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Sedition


Amy in NH
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22 minutes ago, historically accurate said:

WTM Politics Group is the place for that discussion. It's a closed group - apply to join. 

I agree, that is probably the place to discuss it.  However, last I was there --- 4yrs ago?? -- it leaned very heavily one way.  I found it to be yet another echo chamber and left.  Perhaps it is more balanced now but just thought I'd give you a heads up.

 

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1 minute ago, PrincessMommy said:

I agree, that is probably the place to discuss it.  However, last I was there --- 4yrs ago?? -- it leaned very heavily one way.  I found it to be yet another echo chamber and left.  Perhaps it is more balanced now but just thought I'd give you a heads up.

 

I agree with you about it's leaning.  I was in a politic discussion group here and left too.

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Here's a link to the group. Hopefully from that link you'll be able to ask to join. If not, post again for help.

We'd be happy to have you join, regardless of your leanings. But in case you're wondering -- yeah, the vast majority of us are firmly against sedition.

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7 minutes ago, TravelingChris said:

Oh I am against sedition too.  But is this group still all people who voted for Trump are idiots group?

I don't think that characterization has ever been anywhere near the truth, although I suspect people who have very right-leaning biases might believe it to be so.

Thankfully, more and more of our topics now can be forward looking, and that means he's much less the major subject of discussion.

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1 hour ago, Amy in NH said:

Is there a Social Group, or someplace, where boardies are discussing the current spate of sedition in the US, and potential consequences?

The Politics group discusses this. I'm a member but agree with PP that it's a bit of an echo chamber. Political issues are rarely discussed. It's very focused on Trump from a centrist perspective. There aren't many right or left POVs there. 

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2 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

The Politics group discusses this. I'm a member but agree with PP that it's a bit of an echo chamber. Political issues are rarely discussed. It's very focused on Trump from a centrist perspective. There aren't many right or left POVs there. 

It sounds like it's changed and that's a good thing. 

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1 hour ago, TravelingChris said:

Oh I am against sedition too.  But is this group still all people who voted for Trump are idiots group?

I would say that the group is generally anti-Trump, but not anti-Republican or anti-conservative. Some of the most active members are life long Republicans. I’d say moderates from both sides make up the majority. 
 

Edited to add that I think country over party would represent the view of many in the group.

Edited by Frances
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5 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

To be clear, some might think it's leftist because it's very anti-Trump and pro-Biden. It's centrist because Biden is centrist. So you might not think that the group has changed. 

I think it’s more anti-Trump than pro-Biden. Opinions were all over the place during the Democratic primaries.

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12 minutes ago, PrincessMommy said:

It sounds like it's changed and that's a good thing. 

I don't think it's changed much. And I think that's a very good thing. As the others have said, most of us are quite moderate politically, and that's mostly always been so. The extremes of either side aren't well represented, although there are a few who dip their toes in occasionally. And that's a good thing. We all want to hear various perspectives even if we continue to "argue" for our moderate view. I suspect anyone who tilts strongly one way or the other, and who isn't intellectually honest enough with themselves to recognize that (and let's be honest--there's a LOT of that going around on all sides), might think it's a biased forum simply because most members won't agree with their POV. To me charges of bias nowadays almost always mean "anything that doesn't agree with me."

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13 minutes ago, Pawz4me said:

I don't think it's changed much. And I think that's a very good thing. As the others have said, most of us are quite moderate politically, and that's mostly always been so. The extremes of either side aren't well represented, although there are a few who dip their toes in occasionally. And that's a good thing. We all want to hear various perspectives even if we continue to "argue" for our moderate view. I suspect anyone who tilts strongly one way or the other, and who isn't intellectually honest enough with themselves to recognize that (and let's be honest--there's a LOT of that going around on all sides), might think it's a biased forum simply because most members won't agree with their POV. To me charges of bias nowadays almost always mean "anything that doesn't agree with me."

Well, moderate is a bias too. Moderate does not mean the absence of bias. It's just a different bias from that of the left or the right. 

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Having been in some very left-leaning spaces, I would say that the politics group is very moderate and quite tolerant. There are points of view that are unpopular in the group, but people are generally willing to engage. 

If you think that the politics group is extremely progressive, you haven't been in any truly progressive spaces 😉 . I tend to have trouble in any kinds of circles where there's only one right point of view (I'm always happy to point out that the emperor has no clothes, whatever party the emperor belongs to), and I have not had this problem in the Politics groups in any way. 

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1 minute ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

Well, moderate is a bias too. Moderate does not mean the absence of bias. It's just a different bias from that of the left or the right. 

I think we're going to need to define "bias" for that statement to make sense. 

I'm moderate because I prefer things to be evidence-based and tested. Sometimes, that actually makes me very radical about certain issues (see: mathematics education), but overall, it often puts me in the center. 

Is this a statement of bias? I think of "bias" as occurring when one's values wind up at tension with actual facts. 

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Just now, kand said:

I think I like this definition. I’m going to have to think for a while if that is the accepted definition of bias, but it’s a good one to ponder.

Thanks 😄 . Given that I just thought of it, I'm willing to be proven wrong 😉 . I just know that I feel like I have some level of bias when I try to explain things away, and I usually try to explain things away when they don't match some internal compass... 

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6 minutes ago, kand said:

Like positivity as a predictor of Covid deaths? 😉 lol, I’m just kidding with you. I actually think it’s a really good metric to track— probably one of the most helpful —but also that you are fiercely protective of it 😉

Yep. Exactly like that. That's actually one of the things I was thinking about. And I currently have the evidence that I was sadly wrong that it's the best statistic at the moment. It was a good statistic for much of the time I've been tracking it, and it's currently not working nearly as well as it used to. 

Edited by Not_a_Number
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40 minutes ago, Pawz4me said:

I don't think it's changed much. And I think that's a very good thing. As the others have said, most of us are quite moderate politically, and that's mostly always been so. The extremes of either side aren't well represented, although there are a few who dip their toes in occasionally. And that's a good thing. We all want to hear various perspectives even if we continue to "argue" for our moderate view. I suspect anyone who tilts strongly one way or the other, and who isn't intellectually honest enough with themselves to recognize that (and let's be honest--there's a LOT of that going around on all sides), might think it's a biased forum simply because most members won't agree with their POV. To me charges of bias nowadays almost always mean "anything that doesn't agree with me."

This, exactly. It seems that there are very few people willing to have open minded discussions any more. If people in a group agree with me, it’s “a group of like-minded individuals.” If they don’t, it’s “simply an echo-chamber for the opposing view.” 

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6 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I think we're going to need to define "bias" for that statement to make sense. 

I'm moderate because I prefer things to be evidence-based and tested. Sometimes, that actually makes me very radical about certain issues (see: mathematics education), but overall, it often puts me in the center. 

Is this a statement of bias? I think of "bias" as occurring when one's values wind up at tension with actual facts. 

Preferring things to be evidence based is not a bias. But what "actual facts" are there in politics? There are facts such as the number of votes cast. That can be measured objectively. But why people voted like they did is much murkier. 

What policies should be followed? Is that driven by evidence? Politics is a game of compromise. These people believe X and these people believe Y and they negotiate and meet somewhere in the middle. Everyone wins something and loses something. That's moderation or centrism. That middle position is probably the least supportable in terms of evidence because it's a compromise. 

I would define bias in a broader way. Our bias is our pre-conceived assumptions about the world. Who you are inclined to believe and who you are inclined to doubt. Everyone is biased. My bias is towards democracy so I believe that policy making is about consensus and compromise. 

How should we be governed? Is there evidence showing the best form of government? How could you even measure that? But yet most of us have an opinion about that. What are our opinions based on? Our biases. 

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1 minute ago, I talk to the trees said:

This, exactly. It seems that there are very few people willing to have open minded discussions any more. If people in a group agree with me, it’s “a group of like-minded individuals.” If they don’t, it’s “simply an echo-chamber for the opposing view.” 

And in some sense, every place is an echo chamber. There are points of view not acceptable in polite society, and that's OK with me. (I'm not going to argue with Holocaust deniers. I'm just not.) 

However, I do think that different spaces allow a different breadth of points of view. 

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4 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

That middle position is probably the least supportable in terms of evidence because it's a compromise. 

It's not obvious to me that all compromises are least evidence-based, although I've certainly seen evidence-based things diluted by silly compromises, so I know what you mean. 

 

4 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I would define bias in a broader way. Our bias is our pre-conceived assumptions about the world. Who you are inclined to believe and who you are inclined to doubt. Everyone is biased. My bias is towards democracy so I believe that policy making is about consensus and compromise. 

How should we be governed? Is there evidence showing the best form of government? How could you even measure that? But yet most of us have an opinion about that. What are our opinions based on? Our biases. 

At the end of the day, the "best" form of government is very hard to discuss. It's not something that you can measure, because "best" is extremely subjective. 

However, you can certainly try to optimize for more measurable things, and that's what I prefer to do. I'm a mathematician, and I prefer to arrange things in logical progressions, so I often try to get people to clarify what their goals are. Because I often don't only disagree with people about their goals: I disagree that their actions lead to their own goals. And that's a much more interesting and fact-based discussion than telling people their goals are wrong. 

Edited by Not_a_Number
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Sometimes “echo chamber” really means “I feel out-debated and would rather talk to people who agree with me because it’s less mentally challenging.” I think interesting discussions are ALWAYS welcome but if it makes you feel insecure or hurt to have your beliefs challenged, then any political discussion group isn’t going to be enjoyable. I say have the courage of your convictions, wade in, and enjoy it. That way everyone can learn more. 

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8 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

Sometimes “echo chamber” really means “I feel out-debated and would rather talk to people who agree with me because it’s less mentally challenging.” I think interesting discussions are ALWAYS welcome but if it makes you feel insecure or hurt to have your beliefs challenged, then any political discussion group isn’t going to be enjoyable. I say have the courage of your convictions, wade in, and enjoy it. That way everyone can learn more. 

What I really want out of a debating group is for there to be a range of acceptable viewpoints. I've absolutely been in spaces where the acceptable range was very narrow, and it didn't really matter if what you were saying was true as long as it didn't fit the narrative. But that wasn't on here 🙂 

Edited by Not_a_Number
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21 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

Sometimes “echo chamber” really means “I feel out-debated and would rather talk to people who agree with me because it’s less mentally challenging.” I think interesting discussions are ALWAYS welcome but if it makes you feel insecure or hurt to have your beliefs challenged, then any political discussion group isn’t going to be enjoyable. I say have the courage of your convictions, wade in, and enjoy it. That way everyone can learn more. 

This exactly. Before the election someone new waded in and had her views challenged. She ended up saying I must consider her a deplorable because she supports Trump. Of course I hadn’t called her any name, let alone a deplorable. But I can imagine having her vote questioned by lots of people from both sides was mentally challenging. New people to the group seem to often be confused about the leanings of the group, especially if they come in with the mistaken assumption that being anti-Trump means being a Democrat and/or anti-conservative or anti-Republican.

Edited by Frances
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The current politics group has had an effective owner. Issues in the past with were dealt with by the owner. Not sure if she is still the owner.

I have not been a member for some time, as I found it to be echo chamber ish, even though my own echoes at the time largely aligned. 

There used to be a cross-party discussion group some time ago which leaned conservative, and there were some enjoyable, if ultimately frustrating conversations there. It is no longer. The other politics group is it. 

I would assume most, if not all, posters here are not fans of sedition, and agree the current politics group is the place to discuss this. Depending on how heterodox you are re other issues, you may or may not find it useful for other political discussions. 

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re defining what "bias" means

9 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

Well, moderate is a bias too. Moderate does not mean the absence of bias. It's just a different bias from that of the left or the right. 

 

6 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I think we're going to need to define "bias" for that statement to make sense. 

I'm moderate because I prefer things to be evidence-based and tested. Sometimes, that actually makes me very radical about certain issues (see: mathematics education), but overall, it often puts me in the center. 

Is this a statement of bias? I think of "bias" as occurring when one's values wind up at tension with actual facts. 

Interesting question.

Personally while I absolutely concur that "moderate" is a point of view/ orientation that drives worldview/ lens through which the world is seen/ approach to public policy/ conduct with people and etc, I would not necessarily see moderation as bias.

Or, as I think about the distinction between "worldview" and "bias" -- I think there IS a distinction -- I do not necessarily see "conservative" or "liberal" worldview as necessarily implying bias either.  "Worldview" and "biased" are to my mind related, but not synonymous. 

So to be more concrete, I would argue that while The Economist and Wall Street Journal both lean a bit more conservative in "worldview," and NYT and Washington post both lean a bit more liberal in "worldview," all four sources are reliable sources, with real live investigative journalists chasing down news stories, with fact-checkers corroborating, with published corrections when inevitable human errors of fact or attribution are made; and with opinion pieces and editorials clearly marked as such.  I would not count the news coverage of any of those sources as "biased."  (Opinion / editorial pages are different which is why they are labeled. ) There is "worldview" that may affect what reporters are hired, what topics are culturally ascendant or de-emphasized, what stories are assigned, style usage and so on. While all that indisputably has an *effect,* I would not, myself, label that effect as "bias."

For me the distinction does get to something like "ability / willingness to permit inconvenient facts, that challenge or irritate the worldview, in."  That, to me, is what "bias" is.  It's not necessarily *qute* the orientation to quantitative data of my friend @Not_a_Number  -- some inconvenient facts are housed in unpleasant closed camera footage, or primary documents, or autopsy reports or court filings or other more narrative forms.  But something along those lines.  To my mind, "bias" amounts to a disinclination or refusal to look at information that does not support the "worldview."  Not the worldview itself. 

Such disinclination/refusal includes the sort of nihilistic, everything is possible and nothing is true position that there are no such things as "facts."  THAT is indeed a bias, a deeply dangerous bias, which, to bring this back around, has to my mind laid groundwork for the current sedition risk.

 

(As an empirical observation: people with very different worldviews can and do engage together. It's not easy, but empirically it does happen; and one of the tools for building the foundation for such engagement is the construction of a commonly-agreed to set of facts.  This is where the river lies, this is the direction the water flows; this is our governing system and our founding document, this is ours; this is the census and etc.)

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4 minutes ago, Pam in CT said:

For me the distinction does get to something like "ability / willingness to permit inconvenient facts, that challenge or irritate the worldview, in."  That, to me, is what "bias" is.  It's not necessarily *qute* the orientation to quantitative data of my friend @Not_a_Number  -- some inconvenient facts are housed in unpleasant closed camera footage, or primary documents, or autopsy reports or court filings or other more narrative forms. 

I agree with your whole post, but just to be clear: I value a lot of the same things you do 🙂 . I'm also a big fan of things that cannot be quantified -- stories, personal myths, philosophy. 

I also really appreciate quantitative data as a way to combat the slippery nature of emotional takes. But there are many, many, many things in this world that cannot be quantified, and they are no less important. 

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1 hour ago, Not_a_Number said:

I think we're going to need to define "bias" for that statement to make sense. 

I'm moderate because I prefer things to be evidence-based and tested. Sometimes, that actually makes me very radical about certain issues (see: mathematics education), but overall, it often puts me in the center. 

Is this a statement of bias? I think of "bias" as occurring when one's values wind up at tension with actual facts. 

One could argue that wanting things to be evidence based is an extreme position compared to the majority of human beings 😉

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And from the point of view of this member of the politics group, I think you're all right wing of varying degrees of scariness, because I'm further left than Bernie Sanders. 😛

There's a rule against using the boards to talk about the boards and the OP's question has been answered, so I'm gonna lock this up.

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