Activism Discussion: The Culture War On Facts

The Culture War On Facts
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Dan Clore
2007-10-11 02:24:24 EST
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

[Like the work of Stirner, Korzybski, Robert Anton Wilson, George
Lakoff, and many others, this presents insight into how the human mind
forms beliefs and maintains them in the face of contrary facts and
evidence ("what the thinker thinks, the prover proves", as RAW put it).
It carries potentially very useful information, both in monitoring one's
own mental activity and helping one avoid falling into errors, but also
in debating effectively and framing arguments in a manner that one's
audience will find convincing. It is especially noteworthy that it is
possible to present evidence for one's claims in a manner that makes
some others more, rather than less, likely to reject them.

I wish there was more explanation of the two axes -- hierarchical vs
egalitarian and individualist vs communitarian, as well as where
particular political viewpoints fall on them. As an anarchist, it seems
a sure thing that I would fall very far to the egalitarian end of the
first, but I don't have a very good idea about the second -- I'm
guessing that I personally would fall somewhere near the middle.

--DC]

http://www.reason.com/news/show/122892.html
Reason Magazine
The Culture War on Facts
Are you entitled to your own truth?
Ronald Bailey
October 9, 2007

"There is a culture war in America, but it is about facts, not values,"
declare the researchers at the Yale Cultural Cognition Project in a new
study called "The Second National Risk and Culture Study: Making Sense
of-and Making Progress In-the American Culture War of Fact" (full study
not yet available online). Contrary to the late New York Sen. Daniel
Patrick Moynihan's famous maxim, the study finds that most Americans
believe they're more than entitled to their own opinions; they believe
that they are entitled to their own facts. Obviously, this complicates
public policy debates.

The chief aim of the Yale Cultural Cognition Project is to show how
cultural values shape the public's risk perceptions and related policy
beliefs. Project scholars define "cultural cognition" as "the tendency
of individuals to conform their beliefs about disputed matters of fact
to values that define their cultural identities." Their research found
that cultural identity values "exert substantially more influence over
risk perceptions than does any other individual characteristic,
including gender, race, socioeconomic status, education, political
ideology and party affiliation."

This is intuitive to most of us. Ask nearly any American a couple of
questions about what they think of a list of policy issues: the death
penalty, abortion, gay rights, the minimum wage, school choice, nuclear
power, public health, gun control, climate change, the propriety of
Christmas crèches in town squares, and affirmative action. You will
quickly get a pretty good idea of what they think about all of the
issues on the list. But why do the ways people think about policy issues
tend to cluster together? The answer turns on how people feel about
societal risks and the policies aimed at reducing those risks. And how
people feel about risk is shaped by their core values.

The Project usefully classifies cultural values on two cross-cutting
axes: hierarchy-egalitarianism and individualism-communitarianism.
Hierarchs think that rights, duties, goods and offices should be
differentially distributed on the basis of clearly defined and stable
social characteristics (e.g., gender, wealth, ethnicity). Egalitarians
believe that rights, duties, goods and offices should be distributed
equally without regard to such characteristics. Individualists think
that people should secure the conditions of their own flourishing
without collective interference or assistance. Communitarians believe
that societal interests trump individual ones and that society should be
responsible for securing the conditions for individual flourishing.

To see how these cultural values affect people's policy views, the
Project has conducted a number of opinion surveys on various issues. A
2004 survey found that egalitarians and communitarians worry about
environmental risks and favor regulating commercial activities to abate
those risks. Individualists were skeptical of environmental risks
because they cherish markets and private orderings which regulation
threatens. And hierarchs worried about the risks of illicit drug use and
promiscuous sex because they challenge traditional social norms and
roles. So far, so good. The research basically replicated what most of
us already intuit about how cultural values affect (distort) policy
judgments.

In the new study, the Project researchers conducted one survey of 1700
subjects about their attitudes about the risks of climate change. As the
researchers expected the egalitarians and communitarians were worried
about global warming and the hierarchs and individualists were
skeptical. In one part of the survey some subjects read one of two
newspaper stories about a study by a group of climate change experts.
The stories were identical with regard to the facts about global
warming, e.g., the earth's temperature is increasing, humans are causing
it, and that it would likely cause dire environmental and economic
damage if unabated. The only difference was the policy solution. In one
story the experts called for "increased anti-pollution regulation" and
in the other they recommended the "revitalization of the nuclear power
industry."

The subjects who read the nuclear power version were less culturally
polarized than the ones who read the anti-pollution version. Why?
Because the individualists and the hierarchs who read the nuclear
version were less inclined to dismiss the facts about global warming
than the individualists and hierarchs who read the anti-pollution
version were, even though the factual information and the source were
identical in both stories. Interestingly, the individualists and
hierarchs who read the anti-pollution version were more skeptical of
global warming than those in a control group that did not read either
version of the newspaper story. This suggests that a real-world
consequence might be that media reporting on scientific evidence coupled
with calls for interventionist policies such as the Kyoto Protocol
hardens individualist and hierarchal skepticism on global warming.

The Project researchers see this response of the individualists and
hierarchs to the newspaper stories as an example of "identity
protective" cognition in which people subconsciously resist factual
information that threatens their defining values. The nuclear power
version tended to affirm the individualist and hierarchal value
commitments to technological progress, thus mitigating their skepticism
of the dangers posed by global warming. "When policies are framed in
ways that affirm rather than threaten citizens' cultural beliefs, people
are less likely to dismiss information that runs contrary to their prior
beliefs," notes the study.

The new study also reports the results of the Project's first survey in
2004. That survey focused on how cultural values shaped how people feel
about the risks of new technologies about which they know little, in
this case, nanotechnology. Some 80 percent of the subjects surveyed had
previously not heard much about nanotechnology. As part of the survey, a
subset of 300 subjects was given identical factual statements about the
risks and benefits of nanotechnology.

Unfortunately, more factual information about nanotechnology led to more
polarization on its risks and benefits. The study found that after
reading the factual information that "egalitarians and communitarians
were significantly more concerned with risks of nanotechnology relative
to its benefits than were hierarchs and individualists." Why? Because of
"biased assimilation." This is the predisposition of people to
selectively notice and credit information that affirms their values.
"When this dynamic is at work, individuals of diverse values don't
converge but instead polarize when exposed to a common body of
information on some disputed factual issue," say the researchers. (I
earlier reported on this particular Project study here.)

Press relations gurus have long known the value of credible
spokespersons when an issue arises. For example, if a company wants to
assure the public that its products are safe, they more or less
automatically trot out a woman expert who is also a mother to say so. If
an environmental lobby group wants to claim that a company's product is
killing people, they too more or less automatically trot out a woman
expert who is a mother to say so. The Project researchers confirmed this
insight with a survey about attitudes toward proposals for the mandatory
vaccination of teenage girls with the new human papillomavirus (HPV)
vaccine to prevent cervical cancer. In this case they exposed subjects
to culturally identifiable advocates, e.g., some men in suits and others
without ties and with facial hair.

In this case, when culturally identifiable hierarchal and individualist
experts argued unexpectedly in favor mandatory vaccination against
communitarian and egalitarian experts who unexpectedly opposed it,
polarization declined as expected. In fact, individualists and
communitarians actually swapped places, with communitarians worrying
more about the risks of vaccination than the individualists did
(although the difference between the two groups did not achieve
statistical significance). So perhaps when a well-known environmentalist
such as Stewart Brand comes out in favor of nuclear power and
genetically enhanced crops, egalitarians and communitarians may be
prompted to reevaluate the risks and benefits of those technologies.

One additional survey dealt with the risks of terrorism and national
security. Both hierarchs and egalitarians are very concerned about the
risk of terrorism, but differ radically on the source of the risk and
what how to deal with it. According to the survey egalitarians believe
that war in Iraq has increased the risk of a terrorist attack while
hierarchs don't. Individualists also split with hierarchs on how best to
handle the risk of terrorist attacks. Individualists see great risk in
endowing the government with more authority and thus oppose proposals
such as reintroducing the draft and allowing warrantless wiretaps.

In their earlier nanotechnology study, the Project researchers concluded
that that "mere dissemination of scientifically sound information is not
by itself sufficient to overcome the divisive tendencies of cultural
cognition." In the new study, the researchers note that when policies
are framed so that they affirm rather than threaten citizens' cultural
values, people are less likely to dismiss information that runs contrary
to their prior beliefs. In their conclusion, they hold out the prospect
of scholars someday "identifying [a] deliberative process that make[s]
it possible to fashion regulatory policies that are both consistent with
sound scientific data and congenial to persons with diverse cultural
outlooks."

Hoping to devise such a deliberative process basically ignores the fact
that politics is often a zero sum game in which some actors necessarily
win and others must lose. The facts is that the best solution to the
culture war is to shift more decision-making to the win/win dynamic of
markets which offers greater scope for citizens to act on and express
their diverse values. But of course, I would say that since I culturally
identify as an individualist.

So is the proper framing of public policy issues really enough to bring
an end to the culture war? I doubt it. After all, just who is going to
make polluters, green scaremongers, Republicans, gun control nuts,
neocons, fetus fetishists, Democrats, drug warriors, neo-luddites,
global warming catastrophists, climate change deniers and the like stop
distorting, I mean, framing the facts to fit their cultural values?

Ronald Bailey is Reason's science correspondent. His most recent book,
Liberation Biology: The Scientific and Moral Case for the Biotech
Revolution, is available from Prometheus Books.

--
Dan Clore

My collected fiction: _The Unspeakable and Others_
http://tinyurl.com/3akhhr
Lord Weÿrdgliffe & Necronomicon Page:
http://www.geocities.com/clorebeast/
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

"Don't just question authority,
Don't forget to question me."
-- Jello Biafra























Gary Childress
2007-10-11 06:44:09 EST
On Oct 11, 2:24 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
> News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo
>
> [Like the work of Stirner, Korzybski, Robert Anton Wilson, George
> Lakoff, and many others, this presents insight into how the human mind
> forms beliefs and maintains them in the face of contrary facts and
> evidence ("what the thinker thinks, the prover proves", as RAW put it).
> It carries potentially very useful information, both in monitoring one's
> own mental activity and helping one avoid falling into errors, but also
> in debating effectively and framing arguments in a manner that one's
> audience will find convincing. It is especially noteworthy that it is
> possible to present evidence for one's claims in a manner that makes
> some others more, rather than less, likely to reject them.
>
> I wish there was more explanation of the two axes -- hierarchical vs
> egalitarian and individualist vs communitarian, as well as where
> particular political viewpoints fall on them. As an anarchist, it seems
> a sure thing that I would fall very far to the egalitarian end of the
> first, but I don't have a very good idea about the second -- I'm
> guessing that I personally would fall somewhere near the middle.
>
> --DC]
>
> http://www.reason.com/news/show/122892.html
> Reason Magazine
> The Culture War on Facts
> Are you entitled to your own truth?
> Ronald Bailey
> October 9, 2007
>
> "There is a culture war in America, but it is about facts, not values,"
> declare the researchers at the Yale Cultural Cognition Project in a new
> study called "The Second National Risk and Culture Study: Making Sense
> of-and Making Progress In-the American Culture War of Fact" (full study
> not yet available online). Contrary to the late New York Sen. Daniel
> Patrick Moynihan's famous maxim, the study finds that most Americans
> believe they're more than entitled to their own opinions; they believe
> that they are entitled to their own facts. Obviously, this complicates
> public policy debates.
>
> The chief aim of the Yale Cultural Cognition Project is to show how
> cultural values shape the public's risk perceptions and related policy
> beliefs. Project scholars define "cultural cognition" as "the tendency
> of individuals to conform their beliefs about disputed matters of fact
> to values that define their cultural identities." Their research found
> that cultural identity values "exert substantially more influence over
> risk perceptions than does any other individual characteristic,
> including gender, race, socioeconomic status, education, political
> ideology and party affiliation."
>
> This is intuitive to most of us. Ask nearly any American a couple of
> questions about what they think of a list of policy issues: the death
> penalty, abortion, gay rights, the minimum wage, school choice, nuclear
> power, public health, gun control, climate change, the propriety of
> Christmas crèches in town squares, and affirmative action. You will
> quickly get a pretty good idea of what they think about all of the
> issues on the list. But why do the ways people think about policy issues
> tend to cluster together? The answer turns on how people feel about
> societal risks and the policies aimed at reducing those risks. And how
> people feel about risk is shaped by their core values.
>
> The Project usefully classifies cultural values on two cross-cutting
> axes: hierarchy-egalitarianism and individualism-communitarianism.
> Hierarchs think that rights, duties, goods and offices should be
> differentially distributed on the basis of clearly defined and stable
> social characteristics (e.g., gender, wealth, ethnicity). Egalitarians
> believe that rights, duties, goods and offices should be distributed
> equally without regard to such characteristics. Individualists think
> that people should secure the conditions of their own flourishing
> without collective interference or assistance. Communitarians believe
> that societal interests trump individual ones and that society should be
> responsible for securing the conditions for individual flourishing.
>
> To see how these cultural values affect people's policy views, the
> Project has conducted a number of opinion surveys on various issues. A
> 2004 survey found that egalitarians and communitarians worry about
> environmental risks and favor regulating commercial activities to abate
> those risks. Individualists were skeptical of environmental risks
> because they cherish markets and private orderings which regulation
> threatens. And hierarchs worried about the risks of illicit drug use and
> promiscuous sex because they challenge traditional social norms and
> roles. So far, so good. The research basically replicated what most of
> us already intuit about how cultural values affect (distort) policy
> judgments.
>
> In the new study, the Project researchers conducted one survey of 1700
> subjects about their attitudes about the risks of climate change. As the
> researchers expected the egalitarians and communitarians were worried
> about global warming and the hierarchs and individualists were
> skeptical. In one part of the survey some subjects read one of two
> newspaper stories about a study by a group of climate change experts.
> The stories were identical with regard to the facts about global
> warming, e.g., the earth's temperature is increasing, humans are causing
> it, and that it would likely cause dire environmental and economic
> damage if unabated. The only difference was the policy solution. In one
> story the experts called for "increased anti-pollution regulation" and
> in the other they recommended the "revitalization of the nuclear power
> industry."
>
> The subjects who read the nuclear power version were less culturally
> polarized than the ones who read the anti-pollution version. Why?
> Because the individualists and the hierarchs who read the nuclear
> version were less inclined to dismiss the facts about global warming
> than the individualists and hierarchs who read the anti-pollution
> version were, even though the factual information and the source were
> identical in both stories. Interestingly, the individualists and
> hierarchs who read the anti-pollution version were more skeptical of
> global warming than those in a control group that did not read either
> version of the newspaper story. This suggests that a real-world
> consequence might be that media reporting on scientific evidence coupled
> with calls for interventionist policies such as the Kyoto Protocol
> hardens individualist and hierarchal skepticism on global warming.
>
> The Project researchers see this response of the individualists and
> hierarchs to the newspaper stories as an example of "identity
> protective" cognition in which people subconsciously resist factual
> information that threatens their defining values. The nuclear power
> version tended to affirm the individualist and hierarchal value
> commitments to technological progress, thus mitigating their skepticism
> of the dangers posed by global warming. "When policies are framed in
> ways that affirm rather than threaten citizens' cultural beliefs, people
> are less likely to dismiss information that runs contrary to their prior
> beliefs," notes the study.
>
> The new study also reports the results of the Project's first survey in
> 2004. That survey focused on how cultural values shaped how people feel
> about the risks of new technologies about which they know little, in
> this case, nanotechnology. Some 80 percent of the subjects surveyed had
> previously not heard much about nanotechnology. As part of the survey, a
> subset of 300 subjects was given identical factual statements about the
> risks and benefits of nanotechnology.
>
> Unfortunately, more factual information about nanotechnology led to more
> polarization on its risks and benefits. The study found that after
> reading the factual information that "egalitarians and communitarians
> were significantly more concerned with risks of nanotechnology relative
> to its benefits than were hierarchs and individualists." Why? Because of
> "biased assimilation." This is the predisposition of people to
> selectively notice and credit information that affirms their values.
> "When this dynamic is at work, individuals of diverse values don't
> converge but instead polarize when exposed to a common body of
> information on some disputed factual issue," say the researchers. (I
> earlier reported on this particular Project study here.)
>
> Press relations gurus have long known the value of credible
> spokespersons when an issue arises. For example, if a company wants to
> assure the public that its products are safe, they more or less
> automatically trot out a woman expert who is also a mother to say so. If
> an environmental lobby group wants to claim that a company's product is
> killing people, they too more or less automatically trot out a woman
> expert who is a mother to say so. The Project researchers confirmed this
> insight with a survey about attitudes toward proposals for the mandatory
> vaccination of teenage girls with the new human papillomavirus (HPV)
> vaccine to prevent cervical cancer. In this case they exposed subjects
> to culturally identifiable advocates, e.g., some men in suits and others
> without ties and with facial hair.
>
> In this case, when culturally identifiable hierarchal and individualist
> experts argued unexpectedly in favor mandatory vaccination against
> communitarian and egalitarian experts who unexpectedly opposed it,
> polarization declined as expected. In fact, individualists and
> communitarians actually swapped places, with communitarians worrying
> more about the risks of vaccination than the individualists did
> (although the difference between the two groups did not achieve
> statistical significance). So perhaps when a well-known environmentalist
> such as Stewart Brand comes out in favor of nuclear power and
> genetically enhanced crops, egalitarians and communitarians may be
> prompted to reevaluate the risks and benefits of those technologies.
>
> One additional survey dealt with the risks of terrorism and national
> security. Both hierarchs and egalitarians are very concerned about the
> risk of terrorism, but differ radically on the source of the risk and
> what how to deal with it. According to the survey egalitarians believe
> that war in Iraq has increased the risk of a terrorist attack while
> hierarchs don't. Individualists also split with hierarchs on how best to
> handle the risk of terrorist attacks. Individualists see great risk in
> endowing the government with more authority and thus oppose proposals
> such as reintroducing the draft and allowing warrantless wiretaps.
>
> In their earlier nanotechnology study, the Project researchers concluded
> that that "mere dissemination of scientifically sound information is not
> by itself sufficient to overcome the divisive tendencies of cultural
> cognition." In the new study, the researchers note that when policies
> are framed so that they affirm rather than threaten citizens' cultural
> values, people are less likely to dismiss information that runs contrary
> to their prior beliefs. In their conclusion, they hold out the prospect
> of scholars someday "identifying [a] deliberative process that make[s]
> it possible to fashion regulatory policies that are both consistent with
> sound scientific data and congenial to persons with diverse cultural
> outlooks."
>
> Hoping to devise such a deliberative process basically ignores the fact
> that politics is often a zero sum game in which some actors necessarily
> win and others must lose. The facts is that the best solution to the
> culture war is to shift more decision-making to the win/win dynamic of
> markets which offers greater scope for citizens to act on and express
> their diverse values. But of course, I would say that since I culturally
> identify as an individualist.
>
> So is the proper framing of public policy issues really enough to bring
> an end to the culture war? I doubt it. After all, just who is going to
> make polluters, green scaremongers, Republicans, gun control nuts,
> neocons, fetus fetishists, Democrats, drug warriors, neo-luddites,
> global warming catastrophists, climate change deniers and the like stop
> distorting, I mean, framing the facts to fit their cultural values?
>
> Ronald Bailey is Reason's science correspondent. His most recent book,
> Liberation Biology: The Scientific and Moral Case for the Biotech
> Revolution, is available from Prometheus Books.
>
> --
> Dan Clore
>
> My collected fiction: _The Unspeakable and Others_http://tinyurl.com/3akhhr
> Lord Weÿrdgliffe & Necronomicon Page:http://www.geocities.com/clorebeast/
> News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo
>
> "Don't just question authority,
> Don't forget to question me."
> -- Jello Biafra

Great, dividing the world into two types of people. Even the paltry
Myers-Briggs sounds more sophisticated in comparison. Political
psychology has come so, so far since the dark ages of good people
versus evil people.


Dan Clore
2007-10-11 09:17:13 EST
Gary Childress wrote:

> Great, dividing the world into two types of people. Even the paltry
> Myers-Briggs sounds more sophisticated in comparison. Political
> psychology has come so, so far since the dark ages of good people
> versus evil people.

Actually, with the two axes, there would be at least four types.

--
Dan Clore

My collected fiction, _The Unspeakable and Others_:
http://tinyurl.com/3akhhr
Lord Weÿrdgliffe & Necronomicon Page:
http://www.geocities.com/clorebeast/
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

Strange pleasures are known to him who flaunts the
immarcescible purple of poetry before the color-blind.
-- Clark Ashton Smith, "Epigrams and Apothegms"

P*@gmail.com
2007-10-11 09:30:13 EST
On Oct 11, 2:24 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
> In this case they exposed subjects
> to culturally identifiable advocates, e.g., some men in suits and others
> without ties and with facial hair.
>
> In this case, when culturally identifiable hierarchal and individualist
> experts argued unexpectedly in favor mandatory vaccination against
> communitarian and egalitarian experts who unexpectedly opposed it,
> polarization declined as expected. In fact, individualists and
> communitarians actually swapped places, with communitarians worrying
> more about the risks of vaccination than the individualists did

So one group believed whatever men in suits said, while the other
group believed bearded men.


Dan Clore
2007-10-11 10:46:26 EST
p*s@gmail.com wrote:
> On Oct 11, 2:24 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:

>> In this case they exposed subjects
>> to culturally identifiable advocates, e.g., some men in suits and others
>> without ties and with facial hair.
>>
>> In this case, when culturally identifiable hierarchal and individualist
>> experts argued unexpectedly in favor mandatory vaccination against
>> communitarian and egalitarian experts who unexpectedly opposed it,
>> polarization declined as expected. In fact, individualists and
>> communitarians actually swapped places, with communitarians worrying
>> more about the risks of vaccination than the individualists did
>
> So one group believed whatever men in suits said, while the other
> group believed bearded men.

You have to wonder what would happen if they added men in suits with
beards and suitless, shaven men. Or women--

--
Dan Clore

My collected fiction, _The Unspeakable and Others_:
http://tinyurl.com/3akhhr
Lord Weÿrdgliffe & Necronomicon Page:
http://www.geocities.com/clorebeast/
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

Strange pleasures are known to him who flaunts the
immarcescible purple of poetry before the color-blind.
-- Clark Ashton Smith, "Epigrams and Apothegms"

*Anarcissie*
2007-10-11 11:52:31 EST
On Oct 11, 9:17 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
> Gary Childress wrote:
> > Great, dividing the world into two types of people. Even the paltry
> > Myers-Briggs sounds more sophisticated in comparison. Political
> > psychology has come so, so far since the dark ages of good people
> > versus evil people.
>
> Actually, with the two axes, there would be at least four types.

If the axes were continuous, there would be an infinity of types,
and it would be an uncountable infinity, too.




Dan Clore
2007-10-11 13:11:44 EST
*Anarcissie* wrote:
> On Oct 11, 9:17 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
>> Gary Childress wrote:
>>> Great, dividing the world into two types of people. Even the paltry
>>> Myers-Briggs sounds more sophisticated in comparison. Political
>>> psychology has come so, so far since the dark ages of good people
>>> versus evil people.
>> Actually, with the two axes, there would be at least four types.
>
> If the axes were continuous, there would be an infinity of types,
> and it would be an uncountable infinity, too.

Yeah. I'm thinking this is something like the Nolan chart.

--
Dan Clore

My collected fiction, _The Unspeakable and Others_:
http://tinyurl.com/3akhhr
Lord Weÿrdgliffe & Necronomicon Page:
http://www.geocities.com/clorebeast/
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

Strange pleasures are known to him who flaunts the
immarcescible purple of poetry before the color-blind.
-- Clark Ashton Smith, "Epigrams and Apothegms"

P*@gmail.com
2007-10-11 14:44:30 EST
On Oct 11, 10:46 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
> patmpow...@gmail.com wrote:
> > On Oct 11, 2:24 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
> >> In this case they exposed subjects
> >> to culturally identifiable advocates, e.g., some men in suits and others
> >> without ties and with facial hair.
>
> >> In this case, when culturally identifiable hierarchal and individualist
> >> experts argued unexpectedly in favor mandatory vaccination against
> >> communitarian and egalitarian experts who unexpectedly opposed it,
> >> polarization declined as expected. In fact, individualists and
> >> communitarians actually swapped places, with communitarians worrying
> >> more about the risks of vaccination than the individualists did
>
> > So one group believed whatever men in suits said, while the other
> > group believed bearded men.
>
> You have to wonder what would happen if they added men in suits with
> beards and suitless, shaven men. Or women--
>
> --

Then no one would believe anything they said. Bearded women have no
credibility whatsoever.


Gary Childress
2007-10-11 21:27:51 EST
On Oct 11, 11:52 am, *Anarcissie* <anarcis...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Oct 11, 9:17 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
>
> > Gary Childress wrote:
> > > Great, dividing the world into two types of people. Even the paltry
> > > Myers-Briggs sounds more sophisticated in comparison. Political
> > > psychology has come so, so far since the dark ages of good people
> > > versus evil people.
>
> > Actually, with the two axes, there would be at least four types.
>
> If the axes were continuous, there would be an infinity of types,
> and it would be an uncountable infinity, too.

Indubitably.


T*@yahoo.com
2007-10-11 23:16:33 EST
On Oct 11, 9:27 pm, Gary Childress <grchild...@aol.com> wrote:
> On Oct 11, 11:52 am, *Anarcissie* <anarcis...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On Oct 11, 9:17 am, Dan Clore <cl...@columbia-center.org> wrote:
>
> > > Gary Childress wrote:
> > > > Great, dividing the world into two types of people. Even the paltry
> > > > Myers-Briggs sounds more sophisticated in comparison. Political
> > > > psychology has come so, so far since the dark ages of good people
> > > > versus evil people.
>
> > > Actually, with the two axes, there would be at least four types.
>
> > If the axes were continuous, there would be an infinity of types,
> > and it would be an uncountable infinity, too.
>
> Indubitably.

There are two types of people in the world: the infinity of types who
divide people into an infinity of types, and the infinity of types who
don't. In accord with the maxim that the extreme left (egalitarian
communitarians so fervent that they advocate a violent, coercive
State) bleeds into the extreme Right (hierarchical indivitualists so
fervent that they advocate a violent, coercive State), the two
infinities of personality types are graphed on the surface of a
Moebius strip. This graph may easily be read and understood by any
paranoid schizophrenic.

Tom Buckner

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