Saturday, November 13, 2010

Links I Partly Disagree With

Writing in another context today, I observed that giving airtime or linkspace to those one fully disagrees with is seldom as fairminded as one hopes. We will seldom choose the best ones. We will choose those examples which make our opponents look like fools, or at least those we think we can refute. At best, we will find alternate viewpoints that are away from the center of our general opposition's main argument, because we don't quite get it. NPR does this, and bless them for trying, but whenever they try to give Another Side, I find myself thinking "what the hell was that about?"

We are much more likely to be persuaded to another POV by someone we have agreement with in other areas. That is the better approach to fairness, then, to give space to those we don't fully agree with, but grasp their point more accurately. With that in mind, I looked for articles of that nature today. I started at First Things and never got far from there. A narrow band of partial agree-ers, but the best I could manage today.

These are pieces I agree with 50-90% of. I just pulled those numbers out of the air, but they seem right.

David B. Hart, as previously, writing about Tolkien and Anarcho-Monarchism.

Wynne Perry at Live Science notes research showing that women's brains get better after giving birth. Somehow, they neglected to test Dads. Hmm.

Family Scholars summarises what research shows about why marriage matters to society. References to the research behind this document are here.

Prospect (UK) has "moral philosopher" Alasdair MacIntyre's critique of global capitalism. (This may go below 50%, but it's interesting.)

Matt Anderson at Mere Orthodoxy writes about elitism in young evangelicals. It applies quite nicely to old evangelicals, too, Matt.

Tom Jacobs at Miller-McCune (British journo site) comments on the research showing that as people's belief in God wanes, they tend to favor larger government.

1 comment:

Ymar said...

A lot of interesting things come when people start at different places and come to the same conclusion. But what is also interesting is when people start from the same place but come with Diametrically different conclusions.

Let's take intel analysis. Get the same satellite picture dump. Get the same set of regurgitated foreign intelligence summaries. Get the same desk clerk profiles of enemy military commanders. Take two intel analysts.

Result of the first finding is, "we should be friend with Iran and lower our nuclear deterrence and missile guard".

Result of the second, is opposite of the first.

However, usually you can't get something so diametrically opposed, unless you have an unaccounted for third factor that is influencing the perception of the same data. In other words, an ulterior motive. For two people that are honestly looking at the same data and trying to find the truth, their results will vary but not on a 180 degree variance. However, if you get a patriot vs a traitor's analysis of the same data, you will NOT get something you will recognize as having come from the same original data point.

Most people would look at the conclusions and think we were talking about some Russian analyst vs a Chinese/Japanese/American analyst.

The Tea Party is an example of when people from disparate environments and beginnings, end up in the same place. That speaks for itself.