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Thread: Why facts don't change our minds

  1. #1
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Why facts don't change our minds

    With all the discussions about the importance of facts, this article might help achieve some understanding of what influences actually work.
    Source: https://jamesclear.com/why-facts-dont-change-minds

    Quotes:
    "The economist J.K. Galbraith once wrote, “Faced with a choice between changing one’s mind and proving there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy with the proof.”

    Leo Tolstoy was even bolder: “The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.”

    In many circumstances, social connection is actually more helpful to your daily life than understanding the truth of a particular fact or idea. The Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker put it this way, “People are embraced or condemned according to their beliefs, so one function of the mind may be to hold beliefs that bring the belief-holder the greatest number of allies, protectors, or disciples, rather than beliefs that are most likely to be true.”

    We don't always believe things because they are correct. Sometimes we believe things because they make us look good to the people we care about.

    I thought Kevin Simler put it well when he wrote, “If a brain anticipates that it will be rewarded for adopting a particular belief, it's perfectly happy to do so, and doesn't much care where the reward comes from — whether it's pragmatic (better outcomes resulting from better decisions), social (better treatment from one's peers), or some mix of the two.”

    Being part of a tribe or feeling like being a part of a tribe has a huge impact vs feeling at odds with the tribe without a sufficient reward to compensate, it seems.
    “The medium is the message. This is merely to say that the personal and social consequences of any medium – that is, of any extension of ourselves – result from the new scale that is introduced into our affairs by each extension of ourselves, or by any new technology.” (Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, 1964)

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Very interesting. It helps to explain why "facts" that are so obvious to one person are not obvious at all to other people.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

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    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    That's pretty depressing--especially the herd-think aspect.

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    “We choose truth over facts”
    - Joe Biden

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    Quote Originally Posted by LDAHL View Post
    “We choose truth over facts”
    - Joe Biden
    What context was this?

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frugal-one View Post
    What context was this?
    Does it matter? He said it at the Iowa state fair to rubes in flyover country.my countrymen! Love the Iowa State fair!

    If they couldn’t figure out what he meant that’s really on them, isn’t it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by iris lilies View Post
    Does it matter? He said it at the Iowa state fair to rubes in flyover country.my countrymen! Love the Iowa State fair!

    If they couldn’t figure out what he meant that’s really on them, isn’t it?
    Was that during his “No Malarkey” tour?

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    Quote Originally Posted by iris lilies View Post
    Does it matter? He said it at the Iowa state fair to rubes in flyover country.my countrymen! Love the Iowa State fair!

    If they couldn’t figure out what he meant that’s really on them, isn’t it?
    Makes no sense what you wrote.

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    Maybe he was talking about Kellyanne Conway's "alternative facts."

    If that's the biggest gaffe he makes, I'd say he's doing fine. Especially considering the competition, whose verbal blunders are so predictably common that people hardly remark on them anymore. (Although "WTF Donnie?" is a recurring comedy bit on a morning show I listen to.)

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    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    Alternative facts way precedes KellyAnne. Who was the asshole in the bush administration that said that they make up their own facts that became reality? I get it, republicans can’t run on reality, they have to just make crap up wholesale. But the current jerks have taken ‘alternative facts’ to the next level. Kind of like how they scream and gnash their teeth at the idea of Democrats acting as reprehensible as they do on the daily. Whatever. They’ve been losers for a long time and eventually (perhaps now) all the gerrymandering and.voter suppression in the world won’t prevent them from forever being the sad loser party. They could turn this around by actually appealing to voters but that’s not their style. They’d rather rely on the slavery based bias built into the constitution to keep their failed party afloat.

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