Neoteny wrote: BigBallinStalin wrote:
*sigh* I'll be less subtle. I thought using the phrase "Cyber Communications" would hint at "The Holy Trinity of Internet Communications," and that the false equivalance argument was obvious enough.
But you do bring up some great points. Yes, people presume knowledge over which they don't know (e.g. economics, BBS). However, there's several ways to address this problem. Two of which are: (1) Encourage people to use different analytical frameworks for understanding causal relationships, or (2) try to shut down the inquiry while labeling people racist.
I opt for #1 by using the econometric way of thinking. You've regrettably opted for #2, which in my opinion is not at all productive/useful because it still leaves people wondering about those causal relationships. At least with the #1 approach, I provide some people the means for framing such questions in order to become more skeptical about their personal observations and the conclusions which they ponder.
Hopefully, that clears up the confusion. RE: your last sentence, Sure, many scientists don't view inquiries about race as decent, but that in no way contributes to the public discourse. Many (even scientists) adhere to th pretense of knowledge, but at least many are willing to understand through questions and argument. Side-stepping and/or undercuttnig the entire debate fails to undermine the sources of racism through idea creation in the non-scientific spheres. I'm tackling this problem, and you're essentially calling people racists (which isn't nearly as useful). It's almost as useless as Symmetry's approach of calling people idiots
You're very correct in that assessment. Indeed, my original proposal comes across as somewhat non-sequitur for a reason. Not many people in this thread have discussed their motivations for joining this fracas. But I've played in these trenches. I've seen things you wouldn't believe, man. I know who holds the perspective I'm criticizing. And some of them are here. Now, I'm as sad as you are that these younger whippersnappers are maybe missing out on having some 98.5% reagent grade knowledge dropped on they asses, but I'm just a man. I have an ATP reserve comparable to that of your average black man. Or white man. Or purple man. I'm here to enjoy myself. Sometimes that involves talking science. But it's hard work. It's difficult to spend time putting an argument together to have Scotty play the race card card and scamper away. It's exhausting trying to explain to Gabon what a peer-reviewed source is, much less to get him to post one. Sometimes its more fun to feed into their paranoia that I just think everyone in the world is a racist. I won't be able to change their mind anyway. I think you know that sometimes taking the high road feels frustrating. Ineffective. Pointless. But you have to ask yourself: are you having fun? You can spend hours of your life explaining the minutiae of the work you love, and then have to stare at the ceiling before you sleep wondering whether addressing these racists legitimizes them. Whether it is really going to make a difference to them. Whether letting them know they kept you up for two minutes one night will just encourage them. I'll let you decide where you draw your line. But if you want to criticize my methods and motivations, then I'll, well, let you have cake.
Like I hinted at above, you and I are very likely in agreement on this.
As long as my cake comes loaded with ATP, I'm happy.
As far as the High Road Crusade goes, it seems to be the best choice. By analogy, if I took your approach with economics, I'd turn into an 70-year-old white man calling these clowns a bunch of idiots for buying into the political hype and the well-intended nonsense of disastrous socialist policies. But, would that approach be better? Maybe. I'll consider it.