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View Diary: Understanding the Bubble: A Non-Election Diary. (Updated with thanks.) (43 comments)

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  •  I can't tell you how many times (8+ / 0-)

    I've had wingnuts link me to other wingnuts' opinions as "proof" of their own purported "facts." It's enough that someone else thinks [X] to "prove" that [X] is true, and more importantly that [X] is a "fact."

    When I was a high school English teacher, I found that one of the biggest problems students had in writing literary essays was supporting their conclusions with textual evidence, and drawing reasonable conclusions from textual evidence. In other words, they had a hard time connecting conclusions with evidence in both directions. I think this is a problem for a lot of people. They can't distinguish objective facts from interpretations and characterizations of those facts, or conclusions purportedly based on those facts; they can't determine with any consistency or reliability whether and how certain facts support or refute certain conclusions.

    Once I made a comment that it's hard to have a conversation with someone who knows that 2+2=5. I got a very interesting response: 2+2 does =5 ... for sufficiently large approximations of 2. If you think about it, that makes a lot of sense. Where one's "facts" are mere approximations of reality, they can lead to very, very wrong conclusions.

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