Alarming News: I like Morgan Freeberg. A lot.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: We were following a trackback and thinking "hmmm... this is a bloody excellent post!", and then we realized that it was just part III of, well, three...Damn. I wish I'd written those.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: ...I just remembered that I found a new blog a short while ago, House of Eratosthenes, that I really like. I like his common sense approach and his curiosity when it comes to why people believe what they believe rather than just what they believe.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is an intriguing guy...[he] asks great questions and answers others with style, flair, reason and wit. On the blogroll he goes. Make him a part of your regular blogospheric reading. I certainly will.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is brilliant.
Common Sense Junction: Misha @ Anti-Idiotarian never ceases to amaze me. He keeps finding other good blogs. I went over to A.I. this morning for my daily Misha fix and he had found this guy named Morgan Freeberg in Fair Oaks, California, that has a blog, House of Eratosthenes. Freeberg says its "The Blog That Nobody Reads" but it may now become the blog that everybody reads.
Jaded Haven: Good God, Morgan, you cover a topic from front to back with a screwy thoroughness I find mind boggling. I'm in awe of your thought proccesses, my friend, you're an exceptional talent. You start by throwing in the kitchen sink, tie in someone's syphilitic uncle, bend around a rip tide of brilliance and bring it all home in a neat, diamond dripping package of an exceptionally readable moment of damn fine wordsmithing. I love reading you.
Mein Blogovault: Make "the Blog that No One Reads" one of your daily reads.
Philmon: When Morgan meanders, stick with him - he's got a point and it'll be worth it in the end. He's not a hit-and-run snarky quip kind of guy. The pieces all fall into place like tumblers in a lock and bang! He's opened a cognative door for you.
Rightlinx: Morgan at House of Eratosthenes is one of the best writers out there. I read him nearly every day because he manages to provide an interesting perspective, even though I don't always agree.
Poetic Justice: Cletus! Ah gots a laiv one fer yew...
It occurs to me that we spend so much energy and time arguing about conclusions of things. We think we’re doing a wonderful job marshaling our critical thinking resources, thinking for ourselves and so forth. But we’re all human, and initial presumptions count for a lot. All who doubt that need only conduct a crude survey, of themselves or of the people they know, it doesn’t matter which — figure out how often it is someone reaches a conclusion wildly at odds with their initial impressions.
If they’re honest, they’ll usually find it doesn’t happen that often. Even in cases where they learn a whole lot between the first impression and the final conclusion. People tend to think what they want to think.
There is nothing new about any of that, in fact. What has changed lately, so far as I can tell anyway, is that we have a smaller and smaller band of puppeteers pulling the strings of a larger and larger population of puppets, when it comes to forming those initial, default presumptions. That last part is significant. If the coterie of puppeteers sought to control conclusions, they’d be less likely to get away with it. And here is the vulnerability. For those of us who put some importance on thinking for ourselves, it is a common flaw for us to guard our final conclusions much more vigilantly than our initial, default presumptions, even though it is very often that the former is determined by the latter. That’s true of both individuals and organizations.
This thing with the Rand Paul filibuster and the drone strikes, falls into this. Sen. Paul is criticized, not for his final or tentative conclusions, but for his default presumptions: President Obama would never do that, you see.
On the other hand, I see there is a bill filed in the Florida legislature requiring anger management classes for people wanting to buy ammunition. See, there is a default presumption there. I see the legislator who came up with the bill is a democrat. I wonder if she supports President Obama, and what opinion she has about the drone thing. I probably don’t need to wonder too much. See how incongruous these get? Default presumption is: President Obama won’t go nuts with drone strikes. But, you might be an angry person who is buying ammunition to shoot someone.
We argue about our final thoughts, but not about our initial ones. Then we wonder why Romney lost.
A compelling, prevailing consensus descends on us quickly with regard to these, since the presumptions are not debated the way the conclusions are. It has not escaped my notice that the prevailing consensus takes on a predictable form: It will be democrat-friendly time after time, and it will say that people who have important jobs in our nation’s capitol — not in the Pentagon, though — can be trusted to make good decisions. And no one else can, unless they’re in another country. We emit too much carbon, we drink too much soda, we eat too much salt, we cling to our guns and our religion.
It has become very fashionable, rhythmic almost, to say “the government does not have a revenue problem, it has a spending problem.” So the syllables go viral. But the sentiment does not. I see it has no discernible effect, none at all. We out here run into revenue problems that really are revenue problems, and we have to cut our spending. Washington gets hit by something called the “sequester” — hits itself with it, is more like it — and goes completely apeshit about it. Again, it doesn’t have to do with bumper sticker slogans going viral and it doesn’t have to do with common sense, it has to do with one default presumption: We need to go without. Washington shouldn’t have to.
We don’t debate this stuff. Not as much as we should.
The most damaging one is the one ultimate lefty-democrat one, the one that says the next revolution is right around the corner and it will, at long last, finally make everything all wonderful and fair for everybody. I’ve noticed it is impervious to time-related evidence, it never buckles or withers under the assault of completely obvious points, like “but we just had a revolution, last year or the year before, this stuff is getting out of control isn’t it?”
I’ve noticed, discussing things with lefties, if you consider your victory to be complete the first time you run into a personal insult, there is one sure shortcut to that: Correctly identifying the exchange as an attempt by the liberal, to convince you — not the other way around — and you, correctly, have the right and the privilege of determining for yourself where the burden of proof should be. That drives them completely up a wall. For the most part, they’re coming at you with a body of experience that is very different from this. You tell them, I’m assuming humans don’t have the capability of emitting pollutants into the atmosphere to cause climate catastrophes, because I think that makes sense, although I’m open to evidence that might say something else, now lay it on me. You get back the biggest bundle of loquacity and garbage. They don’t know how to deal with this.
They don’t know how, because they seldom have to. Our evolving and modern society has become an illustration of the Conquest Rule: People form their default initial presumptions, to suit the liberal agenda, the way you would form a glove to fit a hand. They don’t mean to. They don’t even know they’re doing it. And they do this when they consider themselves moderate, or moderately conservative, or even stridently conservative. We continue to carve out a framework for deciding things, with all of the default thinking formed around liberal orthodoxy, and the burden of proof consistently and systematically positioned upon the other.
What a disaster, and women and minorities are hardest hit.
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