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Thread: Does baked-in bias (ideology) always win?

  1. #1 Does baked-in bias (ideology) always win? 
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    Does baked-in bias (ideology) always win?

    Let’s examine one of the most perplexing and potentially dangerous problems that the world now faces.

    Nuclear proliferation is high on the priority list facing Obama. The problem the haves (those who now have nuclear weapons) have is preventing the have-nots from becoming a member of the haves.

    It is apparent to me that any fair-minded individual must recognize as fact that every nation will logically seek to obtain nuclear weapons and that every nation that has such weapons already, will seek to deter such a happening.


    Fair-mindedness is the corner-stone of CT (Critical Thinking). Without fair-mindedness there is no Critical Thinking.

    To be fair-minded one must be vigilant (consciousness plus intention) of the need to treat all viewpoints alike. This demands that we adhere to intellectual standards such as accuracy and sound reasoning, which are unaffected by self-interest.

    A contrast with fair-mindedness is intellectual self-centeredness.

    Fair-mindedness is a challenging task that demands a family of character traits: intellectual humility, courage, empathy, honesty, perseverance, and a confidence in the value of reason.

    Our culture places maximum value not on fair-mindedness but upon self-interest, and maximizing production, and consumption.


    Intellectual humility begins with the recognition that absolute certainty regarding any matter of fact is beyond human capacity. There exists no mind-independent reality that we have the capacity to know. We can know only that which is “colored” by our experiences and historical perspective.

    Our common sense views, coupled with philosophical tradition and religious dogma, all teach us that such is not the case, that we can find absolute certainty. This cultural tradition works aggressively against our goal of intellectual humility thus demanding that we must become more intellectually sophisticated in order to gain the level of intellectual humility required.

    Intellectual courage is a difficult assignment. We all tend to place great value on our own opinion, which is more often than not just something that we grabbed as it flew by. But this is even more of a problem when we are “wedded” to something that we have a strong commitment to, for what ever reason. Our political affiliation is one example.

    Intellectual courage is especially difficult, and even dangerous to our well being when we hold ideas that society considers them to be dangerous; even though we are confident that they are rationally grounded. Society often punishes severely all forms of nonconformity; the execution of Socrates by the citizens of Athens might serve as a good example.

    By developing this character trait of intellectual courage we will often be ostracized from a group or even a large community. Such an experience will give us incentive to recognize that most people live their lives in such a manner as to be secure in the middle of the approval of those about us.

    Intellectual courage ain’t for sissies!

    Intellectual empathy is a consciousness that one must engage the imagination in an effort to intellectually place your self into the shoes of another so as to comprehend that other person as well as possible. To accomplish this transaction we must try to learn as much as possible about the other person’s situation so as to reconstruct that person’s assumptions, premises, and ideas.

    It appears to me that civilization is presently constructed on the firm foundation of baked-in bias, that is to say that religion forms the foundation of today’s civilization. If this is correct one might ask the question ‘can we construct a world on a foundation of reason when we begin with a world where the understanding of and confidence in reason is seldom observed’?

    Many of these ideas were gleaned from the book Critical Thinking: Tools for Taking Charge of Your Professional and Personal Life by Richard Paul and Linda Elder


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  3. #2  
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    "Intellectual humility begins with the recognition that absolute certainty regarding any matter of fact is beyond human capacity. There exists no mind-independent reality that we have the capacity to know. We can know only that which is "colored" by our experiences and historical perspective".

    Are you saying that we must let other developing countries attain the ability to construct and use nuclear weapons? It would be better for us to understand their wants and desires and allow them to learn of the problems of having such weapons? Experiences and historical perspective may allow those who know to influence those who do not know, by explaining to those that do not know the truths that the one's who do know by experience. So is it right for the USA to try and dictate to those who have not traveled the path that we have taken? But I think you mean there is no absolute truth. But if it is a truth, wouldn't that make it absolute. For instance nothing can travel faster than light, is a truth. It is true for everyone, and everything, in the universe. Science has uncovered many truths, and will discover many more. So our knowledge base is growing. Those who live with beliefs that they have clung to for thousands of years, believe that they know truths, but those truths may be contradicted by Fact. Fact should be the basis for truth. Scientific Laws are truth, Absolutely, and apply to everyone.


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  4. #3  
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    Wildstar

    I am saying that it is logical for all nations who do not have the bomb to want it and it is logical for all nations who have the bomb not to want others to get it.
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  5. #4 Re: Does baked-in bias (ideology) always win? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by coberst
    It is apparent to me that any fair-minded individual must recognize as fact that every nation will logically seek to obtain nuclear weapons and that every nation that has such weapons already, will seek to deter such a happening.[/b]
    Well, hi there cobber coberst. I hope you won't take it amiss if I throw a couple of questions at you here.

    Now I think I'm a pretty fair-minded individual. I may hold some views that differ from others, but then who doesn't. If I am, and I'll surely concede you might be able to prove I'm not, but if I am, why then your statement up there in the quote box is wrong. For as a fair minded individual I don't 'recognise as fact that every nation will logically seek to obtain nuclear weapons'.

    Well, for one thing, from what I've read of some of your posts (and I lurk here quite a bit) you don't have too much positive to say about governments, nor much to say about citizens either. So, help me out here, since you seem to think governments don't often act logically, why would they suddenly start to do so in realtion to nuclear weapons? I hope you see my point. By your own arguments every nation will not seek to obtain nuclear weapons.

    Well, lets set that argument to one side for a moment, though I do hope you'll comment on my point. Let's pretend nations will act logically. Well most countries on the planet couldn't afford to develop a nuclear arsenal, most countries on the planet couldn't afford to develop a delivery system. Many countries on the planet, well they just flat out don't seem to need to have nuclear weapons for any logical reason, tactical or strategic.
    In fact, given how long it would take them to develop them, and how their neighbours might get a bit perturbed to the point where they decide a regime change is in order, most countries, even if they did want them, would decide trying to get them was a bad idea.

    Anyway coberst, it just seems we can't really get into the meat of your post without first dealing with that 'wrongness' right there at the beginnning. I hope we can discuss this and reach some sort of a conclusion.

    You take care now.
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  6. #5  
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    True Path

    I do not try to argue that obtaining a bomb and logically desiring a bomb are equal. I suspect that when more countries have the bomb that it will be much less expensive to acquire a bomb than it is now. I suspect that North Korea might try to sell their bombs in mass thus offering quantity discounts.

    The bomb may become just like guns in America where everyone feels safe from guns only when everyone is packing one.
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    Well golly gee whizz coberst, now you are just confusing me. Your opening post was this tightly argued piece about how baked-in-bias, or ideology, was responsible for nuclear proliferation.

    Now it turns out that you just have a couple of opinions about things, like you say "I suspect" and that "the bomb may become just like guns" and those pesky North Koreans might sell them over the supermarket counter.

    Well you know I have opinions about things too, but I generally think the honest thing is to trot them out there as opinions and not dress them up in a bunch of fine verbiage and pretend they are some scholarly conclusion that has somehow been proven. No sir, that just seems a little bit underhand to me - no offence intended, but that's just how it seems to me, though it surely is just an opinion.

    So at the end of the day you think lots of countries - no I think you said all countries - want to have the nuclear bomb and I'm saying you are wrong. And I'll tell you what coberst, that isn't even an opinion, that there is a fact. You take a look at the likes of Switzerland or Sweden or Finland and you'll see that they have no intention of ever being nuclear powers. And - this is an opinion - I think you'll find a bunch of other countries that have non-nuclear attitudes written into their constitution and their laws.

    So it seems to me that you have an opinion here that has been shown to be plain ass wrong by the facts and I'm hoping that you'll maybe change that opinion in the light of those facts, seeing as how I believe you are a big advocate of this critical thinking, which if I understand it right means you start of criticising your own thinking first, especially when its wrong.

    Again, friend, no offence intended, but I guess this is a discussion forum, so I'm just discussing.
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  8. #7  
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    And I'm just sort of bumping this, because it seems like you may have missed my post and I'd certainly be interested in what you think, seeing as how this is a discussion forum and all.
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    I truly hope you moderators will not object to me bumping this again, but it surely seems to me that Mr. coberst has been asked some questions and I can't help thinking he's avoiding answering them, and it just seems to me that maybe that goes against the intent of this here nice little forum. So I hope you'll agree with me and let me give coberst an occassional nudge until he decides to play nice and hold a discussion on a discussion forum.
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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by TruePath
    I truly hope you moderators will not object to me bumping this again, but it surely seems to me that Mr. coberst has been asked some questions and I can't help thinking he's avoiding answering them, and it just seems to me that maybe that goes against the intent of this here nice little forum. So I hope you'll agree with me and let me give coberst an occassional nudge until he decides to play nice and hold a discussion on a discussion forum.
    Mod mode: No more please, particularly as you seem to be targeting Coberst personally - which is not allowed.

    A genuine interest in a response is fair enough, but there is much about the way in which you have phrased your posts that sounds personal.

    No further action from me for now, but be aware I am watching.

    Neither Coberst nor anybody else is obliged to reply, as you will appreciate, even though it might, by forum conventions, be politer to do so.

    shanks
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  11. #10  
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    Well now, I do appreciate that clarification, though I am mightily disappointed by its content.

    I certainly object pretty damn vehemently to your suggestion I am targeting coberst personally. Hell I don't even know the man.

    He made an interesting post that I claimed was logically flawed. I attacked his arguments with a suite of arguments of my own. Nothing personal there.

    He responded with what is demonstrably a bunch of waffle with no meaningful content. I pointed this out. Again nothing personal. I'm dealing with the arguments or rather lack of arguments from coberst, not coberst. Like I say I don't know the man - or the woman. I have no idea what he's like. I just know his ideas in this thread are flawed. I am surprised he doesn't want to defend them, or have the honesty to admit they are flawed.

    But, hey. If the rules here is that it is OK to post nonsense, but it is not OK to challenge it and to ask that such a challenge be answered, well its your forum, so I'll just have to hunker down and let everyone wallow in ignorance.

    (And yeah, the last comment is somewhat of a personal attack, seeing as how I feel I've just been falsely accused of such and I'm being a bit reactive.)
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