November 21, 2010

"There are many dimensions of opinion, such as people who think opinion is 2-sided and people who do not."

"People who think the previous sentence is a fascinating paradox and people who find it annoying."

64 comments:

William said...

Robert Benchley said that the world is divided into two groups of people: those who divide the world into two groups of people and those who do not.

ark said...

There are actually three kinds of people: Those who think there are three kinds of people, those who don't, and everyone else.

Fen said...

We're programmed to think there is only one correct answer, instead of many.

Mary Beth said...

I expect there to be as many opinions as there are people. Wouldn't it be boring if everyone had the same opinion?

Now, if only everyone could agree on what the facts are.... I want all of my information to be reported by one of Heinlein's fair witnesses.

EDH said...

Denver said...
Yes Ann, you don't feed your Althouse Hillbillies a daily helping of right wing red meat so that they will stay on your porch. And it is beyond me why no sane liberal would not want to get entangled by these well tempered fellows.

That's a "heapin' helpin'" to us Althouse Hillbillies.

You all come back now, yer hear!

Fen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fen said...

I'm still wrapping my mind around the implication that liberals don't want to post here because their fellow liberals have created a toxic environment.

LordSomber said...

As Boortz says, if you and I agree 100% on everything, one of us is redundant.

paul a'barge said...

I'm still trying to find the original comment by Nina.

Sigh (back to you, Perfesser Franklin)

New "Hussein" Ham said...

"We're programmed to think there is only one correct answer, instead of many."

No, we are taught this by Democrats who think we should "spend more on education" ( ... by which of course they mean steal more money from innocent Americans and give it to unionized teachers who are forced to pay union dues against their will).

Ann Althouse said...

@Paul, you have to go back to the first page of comments, here. The specific comment I'm quoting and responding to is here.

Ah Pooh said...

I just love this place, surprises around every corner. First time I ever posted here I was so worried that some one, anyone, would call me names. Eventually someone did, I survived, and now am disappointed if no one, positive OR negative. responds to my comment.

Ann Althouse said...

Blogger starts a new page after the 200th comment.

New "Hussein" Ham said...

"I'm still wrapping my mind around the implication that liberals don't want to post here because their fellow liberals have created a toxic environment."

Liberals don't want to post here because their arguments are so easily batted around by the intelligent readers here.

Why should they do battle here only to lose when there is much more fertile ground (mush-minds) elsewhere.

Liberals are only comfortable around other liberals because their ideas cannot be challenged by other liberals. It is against the laws of their church.

Those who challenge liberal ideas are apostates upon whom jihad must be waged.

New "Hussein" Ham said...

Pooh is such a fraud.

Signed,
Tigger

Ah Pooh said...

Ham -
You made my day!

Ann Althouse said...

@Pooh: Pooh!

edutcher said...

The issue isn't so much that there are many gradations of opinion, it's how many get heard and how many the average Joe (or Jane) can understand. That's when it boils down to two.

Similar to the old gag about Pentium processors: 2 + 2 = 5 for extremely high values of 2.

FormerTucsonan said...

I tend to not post a lot of times because I feel like my comments would get about as much notice as a loud fart at a Metallica concert.

This is largely due to Trooper York's non-sequiturs.

And the fact that Blogger'ss spell check doesn't recognize phrases likes "non-sequiturs" and "Blogger's".

FormerTucsonan said...

And the fact that Blogger'ss spell check doesn't recognize phrases likes "non-sequiturs" and "Blogger's".

Damn! Another example of "what's his name's" Law!

Ah Pooh said...

There I go - right to the front of the class!

New "Hussein" Ham said...

Re Oprah:

What sycophancy looks like:

http://dai.ly/aHt45e

Mary Beth said...

Re: Oprah

I don't watch her and don't understand the appeal of the usual show but those people are excited because they are getting free stuff.

sunsong said...

I like this site - but I'm weird :-)

My views are all over the place. I'm liberal on some issues - conservative on some - middle-of-the-road on some and don't know on others.

There are more right wingers here than left wingers. That's how it looks to me. And there are some who don't do much more than attack those who disagree with them. It's always - you are an idiot, a libtard, an asshole - whatever. They attack the person and don't have much else to say. Those comments are boring to me. There are people I just skip when I see their name - and they are on both sides (if you reduce things to two sides)

And there are people who are clever and funny and interesting.

I am not convinced that there is much value in argument. If I say I prefer chocolate to vanilla - of what value is it to demand that I produce evidence to back up my view or provide a *logical* argument? :-) [And I'm making an absurd analogy on purpose]

If people are not open to changing their mind - what is the purpose of argument? And really, how many people are open?

I do think it is valuable to be aware that there are those out there who don't agree with me - or you. So I like to give an opinion and read others. I think there is value in recognizing that this is a big country and one-size-doesn't-fit-all.

Anyway - that's my five cents.

DADvocate said...

There are 10 kinds of people in the world. Those who know binary and those who don't.

Charlie said...

@sunsong:
"I am not convinced that there is much value in argument. If I say I prefer chocolate to vanilla - of what value is it to demand that I produce evidence to back up my view or provide a *logical* argument? :-) [And I'm making an absurd analogy on purpose]

If people are not open to changing their mind - what is the purpose of argument? And really, how many people are open?"

There is need for argument, or more, when the people with different opinions from yours are are of the opinion that they get to tell you what to do or take your money.

The Crack Emcee said...

The only place I leave room for another opinion on right and wrong is in the arts. I agree with Nazis, gangsta rappers, people who fuck the dead - anyone - in a recording or a painting. But, once we're talking about the real world, you better come correct or I'll persecute you unfairly, shoot you, and then fuck your dead corpse myself.

This ain't no game.

ricpic said...

The fact is that people who claim superiority by saying there are 2 sides to every issue, such people are cop outs. Because even if there are 2 sides to every issue in only the rarest of rare cases are those 2 sides of equal merit. What it boils down to is that a straddler is a won't take a stance coward.

sunsong said...

Charlie,

There is need for argument, or more, when the people with different opinions from yours are are of the opinion that they get to tell you what to do or take your money.

It seems you miss my point - or make it :-)

If I'm not open to changing my mind - you're just wasting your time arguing with me. Better, from my perspective, is to make a good point. Do you see what I mean? I am more apt to try to see what you're saying if you are making a good point than if you are personally attacking me. It's not rocket science here or even social science. It's common sense.


If you perception of reality is interesting or sound or profound or something I haven't thought of myself or read somewhere - I'm much more likely to give it value than if you think there is something wrong with me. I was taught to consider the source when people attack me :-)

And to the argument that some "want to tell you what to do or take your money."

My view is that both sides have their share of wannabe tyrants - whether theocrats or socialists. And my experience with both of them is that they are so in love with their values, their beliefs and their views that they are pretty much unreachable through argument or petty name-calling.

former law student said...

There are many dimensions of opinion, such as people who think opinion is 2-sided and people who do not.

Not to gratuitously bash our gracious hostess, but that sentence does annoy me, because people are not dimensions of opinion.

Let's see: *thinks aloud* People have opinions; opinions have dimensions; people have dimensions (should try to undereat the first few days of this week); opinions don't have people... OK how about this:

Many people realize there are multiple dimensions of opinion, although some people think opinion is two-sided and still others think there is only one side to any issue.

This at least distinguishes opinion holders from the opinions themselves

Ann Althouse said...

"Not to gratuitously bash our gracious hostess, but that sentence does annoy me, because people are not dimensions of opinion."

It annoyed me too, for the same reason. I'd already written in the comments, and putting it here, I saw what you saw. I considered doing something about it and decided the fussiness of that would be worse than leaving it as is. Arguably, it's a figure of speech. Metonymy, perhaps?

Alex said...

I'm a proud Althouse hillbilly. Why prairie shit!

former law student said...

Don't worry, professor. Anything in the comments is first draft stuff at best -- true of what I type, at any rate.

Belkys said...

Well, there are 10 kinds of people those who agree with you and those who are wrong

Ann Althouse said...

"Many people realize there are multiple dimensions of opinion, although some people think opinion is two-sided and still others think there is only one side to any issue."

Well, that's just not spiffy at all. This is why I like blogging. No editors. And if only editors would just tell me the problem they are seeing and then let me rewrite. For example, on this one, I'd make it:

"There are many dimensions of opinion. For example, there's the opinion that opinion is 2-sided and the opinion that it is not.""

See? The better solution is to get the "people" out of there. "People" is a word that often intrudes itself where it doesn't belong. If you start noticing this, the word "people" itself will seem silly. Peeeee pull. Peee pull who need peeeee pull. And yet it's one of the grandest words every. We the People.

Ann Althouse said...

Now, I have to fix the punchline. ("People who think the previous sentence is a fascinating paradox and people who find it annoying.")

I'll say:

And then there's the opinion that the previous sentence is a fascinating paradox and the one that says it's annoying.

ricpic said...

If Yves Tanguy Was Bourgeois His Nightmare Would Be...

Metonymy! Metonymy! Have pity!
Beaten by Washington and Wall Street
Papanymy is wounded!...sometimes by The City, too.

Bob from outside of Detroit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maximum Twine said...

Yes.

There are the hopelessly foolish who think Democrats are the answer. There are the useful idiots who think that the Republicans are the solution. Then there are smart people who see that both parties are one and the same and are going to continue to grow government to benefit corporations (after all they are people too!) and the few that own them. It will be a great laugh to see the useful idiots around here watch over the next two years as Republicans pay back their corporate masters.

Then the many of us will kick over this shame government.

former law student said...

Bloggers
Who don't need pee-pull
Are the happiest bloggers
In the world.

former law student said...

And if the professor had said, "Thanks," I could have said,
"Dimension it."


But that pun is lost and gone forever.

Chip Ahoy said...

Nina, please come back.

NIna expressed her view straightforwardly, then as a group you hastened to prove the point she made. Nina is a lovely person, a reading of the blog she keeps would tell you that, and yet you called her a sock puppet with multiple incarnations. What's the matter with you, can't you take a little constructive criticism? Be good sports now and apologize.

Don't make me come over there and smite you. I've trained many misbehaving dogs, I can handle the likes of you. Here, have a piece of liver.

k*thy said...

Sunsong, I have the same impressions. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the more you identify with them, the less open you are to growth and wisdom from others who don't share them.

And yes, the name calling is a real turn-off.

traditionalguy said...

Flexable people listen to all the talk and opinions of the other side that they can get. There is a chance that a real insight will come, or a hegelian synthesis can emerge. The stubborn folks say one truth rules all decisions known to man, and they refudiate every other speaker...even their own side's speakers that are slightly heretical. They worship their own opinions. This kind of arrogance destroys the stubborn guys in the end because soon no one wants to interact with them if they can be avoided. Listening with respect wins the day. (I have learned all of the above advice the hard way).

Alex said...

Don't make me come over there and smite you. I've trained many misbehaving dogs, I can handle the likes of you. Here, have a piece of liver.

Ah yes poor poor nina, so badly mistreated. Those lefties sure can't take the heat.

Mississippi Truck Driving Man said...

Soory Chip Ahoy, but you are going soft on us. I am with Alex, I also enjoyed the Professor giving Nina a good shellacking.

sunsong said...

k*thy,

I have the same impressions. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the more you identify with them, the less open you are to growth and wisdom from others who don't share them.

And yes, the name calling is a real turn-off.


Thanks for that. I have an unreached goal of being more and more open :-)

A friend is convinced that the Founders used to have quite passionate and heated *debates*. The difference between that and the hostility and name-calling of our time is, my friend is convinced, that though they vehemently disagreed at times, the Founders respected each other as human beings. And, perhaps more than that, they *knew* they were about the busines of something significant - the creation of a fantastic and free new country!

I think about that a lot :-)

sunsong said...

traditionalguy,

Flexable people listen to all the talk and opinions of the other side that they can get. There is a chance that a real insight will come, or a hegelian synthesis can emerge. The stubborn folks say one truth rules all decisions known to man, and they refudiate every other speaker...even their own side's speakers that are slightly heretical. They worship their own opinions. This kind of arrogance destroys the stubborn guys in the end because soon no one wants to interact with them if they can be avoided. Listening with respect wins the day. (I have learned all of the above advice the hard way).

You say a lot there. I know all about learning the hard way :-) That's kind of been my route, too. I've finally come to a place where I want others to have different ideas than I do - because they just might have some ideas that are really helpful, or could be a springboard for others to come up with some creative solutions. It's not like we don't have enough problems to go around :-)

Fen said...

Do you see what I mean? I am more apt to try to see what you're saying if you are making a good point than if you are personally attacking me.

Well sure.

But if you come in here with nonsense like "Bush invaded Iraq to avenge his daddy" then expect to be ridiculed and attacked.

Don't insult our intelligence with propaganda and then expect us to be civil.

Fen said...

Chip: Nina is a lovely person, a reading of the blog she keeps would tell you that, and yet you called her a sock puppet with multiple incarnations.

No. I warned her that we had an infestation of libtard sock puppets with multiple incarnations. I didn't call her one.

If you're talking about the 250+ post thread, you must have just skimmed that part.

Chad said...

You only have to read Althouse's caustic response to Nina to know that Althouse has attracted the crowd and level of discourse (low) that she wants on her blog. She sets the tone of the discussion/debate and the rest just follows.

traditionalguy said...

Chad...You mistake solidly reasoned analysis for a low tone. To keep slamming Ann Althouse for the free speech of her commenters is another mistake. Just blame the commenters. I take plenty of corrections around here because I write as if some issues are black and white. But as Paul Harvey would say there is the rest of the story. Nina is not used to listening to commenters that don't see things her way. That's why the Professor says that she needs to stick around and not run away.

Fen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fen said...

Chad: You only have to read Althouse's caustic response to Nina to know that Althouse has attracted the crowd and level of discourse (low) that she wants on her blog. She sets the tone of the discussion/debate and the rest just follows.

Whats the timestamp of the post you are talking about? Because I am not seeing the "caustic response" that you refer to.

Chad said...

Althouse is being intellectually dishonest here. She frames the discourse on her blog in a way that says liberals are stupid and bad while portraying conservatives as sensible and good. She does this everyday on her blog highlighting news stories that fits her theme and ignoring ones that counter it.

That is her right if that is the kind of blog she wants.

But is intellectually dishonest of her to attack Nina when she points out that fact and states that she as a liberal would not want to subject herself to such an environment.

Daily KOS has a similar MO. Why would the conservatives here want to subject themselves to abuse over there?

Althouse is being either intellectually dishonest or just dishonest with herself when she claims that she has not created a place that is comfortable for conservatives and scalding for liberals. She should also acknowledge that leads to the low quantity/quality of liberal voices here.

It is her choice but she should be honest about it.

Chad said...

Fen, it is her post where she says "bullshit" and claims there is no Althouse "mainstream".

BTW, I see no lack of "gooey self love" among the regular conservative posters here. That is fine. But please don't pretend that you are all that much different than those over at KOS.

traditionalguy said...

Chad...You ignorant slut.By throwing in "bad word" violations to gin up some oh woo woo pretense of being offended, you are showing yourself to be a typical legalistic religious hypocrite from the World Church of Judgementalism. I suppose you proudly don't want to be around anyone who cusses, smokes, drinks or offend Liberals.

Alex said...

Althouse is being intellectually dishonest here. She frames the discourse on her blog in a way that says liberals are stupid and bad while portraying conservatives as sensible and good. She does this everyday on her blog highlighting news stories that fits her theme and ignoring ones that counter it.

What b.s. Ann posts all kinds of threads that bash Republicans for stupidity. It's just that by nature libs are more stupid, thus more material.

Alex said...

But please don't pretend that you are all that much different than those over at KOS.

KOS is a cesspool of vulgarity and hate. I'd like to think we are a bit more light-hearted crowd over here.

k*thy said...

Thanks for that, Chip. I hope she comes back, too.

A ‘s want to right-size liberals is fine – it does us all good, now and then. I empathize with Nina’s frustration, though, in that I have found a couple strategies that tend to work for me – one is to try and remain teachable. The second is to remember the tenants of the Serenity Prayer – and in that to remind myself folks probably aren’t as interested in my opinion as I’d like to think.

Fen said...

Chad: Fen, it is her post where she says "bullshit" and claims there is no Althouse "mainstream".

You mean this:

Nina: But it's not okay for those who may want to say something outside of the Althouse mainstream.

Ann: Oh, bullshit. There is no "Althouse mainstream." You can say whatever you want.

Which you summed up as "You only have to read Althouse's caustic response to Nina to know that Althouse has attracted the crowd and level of discourse (low) that she wants on her blog".

And you have the audacity to speak to intellectual integrity?

Chad said...

Fen, even Althouse cheerleaders are congratulating her for "giving her a good shellacking". I think most fair minded people would recognize me saying her response was "caustic" is not off base. Now some would say appropriately caustic. But caustic none-the-less.

Methadras said...

My opinions are like assholes and everyone gets to see them. Some of you won't like them, some of you will try to fuck them, some of you will probe them, and some of you will say they look just like theirs.

Largo said...

DADvocate said...

There are 10 kinds of people in the world. Those who know binary and those who don't.


There are 10 kinds of people in the world. Those who think in base 101, those who think in base 2, and those who think in ternary.

Intel inside-don't divide!