I have a suggestion for all people who like life: be very critical of any information you are told is true.
First, if it’s true, it will be logically consistent and you don’t need to be told it. If you need to be told it, it may be that you’re underconfident in your views and want information to bolster them.
Second, every piece of information has a source; every source is at least one human being; and we know of no single better source of corrupted reasoning than humans. Dogs don’t lie; they run when you notice the missing steak. Humans rationalize, justify, modify and fake their way to a “truth” that benefits them. I’m told monkeys do the same thing.
Here’s a roundup of bad truth designed to pander to audiences who will pay for having their bias confirmed:
The United States’ standing in the world declined in the past decade to below Cold War levels, according to a leading group of political scientists.
Twenty political scientists worked on the report for more than a year. Two of them dissented from the conclusions, saying that “political bias affects perceptions” and that “the academic community, unbalanced as it is between self-identified Republicans and Democrats, is not immune to such bias.”
The study’s own authors basically announced that it is politically biased. Why? Internal conflict. Most wanted to say Bush = bad, Obama = good, but then realized that they’re just asking other nations whether they agree with the USA. The fact remains that US standing — in terms of power, prestige and might — is assessed by its actions, and is probably an entirely different index.
While Obama has raised American esteem, he has not produced more European troops for Afghanistan, secured concessions from North Korea nor made any headway with Iran, the academics said.
This is closer to the real index, but they spun it as a flight of fancy in the article.
As a candidate for president, Barack Obama decried the financial toll that the Iraq war was taking on the economy, but Obamaâ€™s proposed spending on welfare through 2010 will eclipse Bushâ€™s war spending by more than $260 billion.
During the entire administration of George W. Bush, the Iraq war cost a total of $622 billion, according to the Congressional Research Service.
President Obamaâ€™s welfare spending will reach $888 billion in a single fiscal year–2010–more than the Bush administration spent on war in Iraq from the first â€œshock and aweâ€ attack in 2003 until Bush left office in January.
You don’t see this much. Why? It’s unpopular. Wars are foreign and seem like they easily can be cut. If we criticize welfare, we might anger our fellow citizens.
HIV prevalence among black Americans continues to far exceed rates among whites, despite billions of dollars in government and private spending to combat the disease, according to researchers with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The researchers wrote in a new report appearing in the November issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine that black HIV rates are 10 times higher than white Americans.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 45 percent of new HIV infections in the United States in 2006 occurred among non-Hispanic blacks. Among 13,184 adolescents and young adults in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, HIV rates among young black Americans were 20 times higher than those among their white peers.
Why would we not see much of this in the news, which is a passive form of telling us it’s not true? I don’t think this article is about race so much as it is about an ugly truth: spending billions of government dollars on optional and voluntarily programs doesn’t help anything. HIV, alcoholism, you name it. But if we admit that, we’re suddenly out of one of the easy solutions that voters love. “Just throw money and some hippie programs at it!”
Margarito Martinez says he was fired from the eastern Washington dairy that employed him for more than a year because he tried to unionize the company. Nine co-workers say they also were let go for affiliations with the budding union.
The United Farm Workers of America, the nation’s biggest farm worker union, has filed a lawsuit on the workers’ behalf â€” the latest action from a union looking to increase its ranks among the tens of thousands of farm workers in Northwest agriculture.
The men, all immigrants from rural Mexico, have been working in the state’s agricultural industry, in orchards and dairies, for years. Ruby Ridge’s 24-hour operation required graveyard shifts and workers say they were expected to toil with little rest.
Looks like the free ride with illegals and quasi-legals — low wages, no insurance or benefits, and long hours — is over. They now want the same rights as granted to American workers. That means… they are no longer lower cost. This will have profound effects for all those people who were gung-ho about immigration because it brought us cheap products and more competitiveness. Those two things are not at all true now. Our fond notion was that we could use these people to make cheap consumer goods and there would be no consequences; in reality, we only got a little time before they started demanding to be brought up to our standards. It probably would have been cheaper, and would definitely have been less politically divisive, to simply work with our extant workforce.
Beyonc says Kanye West was “standing up for art” when he swiped the mic from Taylor Swift at the MTV VMAs.
“I knew his intentions and I knew he was standing up for art,” Beyonc told King. “When they didn’t call my name, he was completely shocked. When he walked on the stage, I was like ‘No, no, no!’ He spoke and I’m like, ‘Oh, no, no, no!'”
Actually, it’s just tribalism — members of one group standing up for their own. Imagine if the races had been reversed. Taylor Swift would have been accused of joining the Klan! That’s because whites are perceived as being the favored race. However, the broader principle here is that we’re seeing the true future of diversity: people are going to stand up for others of the same ethnicity, religion, race or values system without caring if their acts are “fair” to all or not.
In our fond theory, if we pander to every group and include everyone, we all get along because of the goodwill offered. As history shows us, this isn’t the case — this just leads everyone to rush in and raid the collective for their own groups. And instead of making discourse between races, religions, etc. more polite and logical, it makes it less logical and more rabidly insistent upon tribalism.
Nearly $1 million in Homeland Security funding typically earmarked for fire departments has been awarded to ACORN, despite a clear signal from Congress that it intends to cut off federal funding to the embattled group.
The grant to ACORN’s Louisiana office became public on Oct. 2, less than three weeks after the House and Senate voted to cut off ACORN funding after employees were caught on video advising a fake prostitute and pimp on scams.
Corruption of a sleight-of-hand sort: we’ll find some way to get our buddies the cash. In theory, a law was made and should be followed; in actuality, this is a giant bureaucratic pile and we’ll find some way to declare some monies legit for the purpose. Aren’t we clever?
Russia sees a redrafted U.S. anti-missile shield plan as less of a security threat than the previously proposed project, Russian agencies said Wednesday, which should ease tensions between the two powers.
Russia strongly opposed the original U.S. plans made under President Barack Obama’s predecessor George W. Bush because of concerns Iran was trying to develop nuclear missiles. Moscow saw the scheme as a threat to its own missile defenses and to its overall security.
Old plan was effective at blocking Russian missiles, new plan is not. Obama traded power for pander. No wonder he’s seen as weak worldwide. We were spun this story as Obama backing down from a dangerous confrontation, and lots of people who should have known better wrote articles assuring us of this case, but really it’s Obama backing down from confronting Russia in the hope of appeasement.
In the latest study to suggest an association between the plastics chemical bisphenol A (BPA) and adverse effects on humans, researchers report that BPA may affect the behavior of little girls.
Girls exposed to higher levels of BPA displayed more “externalizing” behaviors, such as aggression and hyperactivity, according to the study, which is published in the Oct. 6 online edition of Environmental Health Perspectives.
Now that one sheep broke from the herd to complain about BPA, the rest have followed, and are finding out all sorts of helpful bad things. Where were they before? And instead of following the herd, are they testing other common food-contact chemicals introduced to our lives after 1900? Probably not. We like to fondly think our researchers are looking out for us, but really they’re just more sheep trying to offer us a product we’d like to buy.
US-based toy retailer Toys”R”Us has been reprimanded for gender discrimination following a complaint filed by a group of Swedish sixth graders about the storeâ€™s 2008 Christmas catalogue.
According to the youngsters, the Toys”R”Us Christmas catalogue featured â€œoutdated gender roles because boys and girls were shown playing with different types of toys, whereby the boys were portrayed as active and the girls as passiveâ€, according to a statement from Ro.
Teach children political propaganda that redefines “good” and “evil,” and they’ll try to fight evil with good. Only later do they realize it was a lie and feel burned out and empty. In the meantime, most young parents want to raise their kids the traditional way only because it is the most natural and causes the fewest problems, hence Toys R Us is selling gender-role-based toys.
It’s an amusing lineup of political denial. For every “truth,” there’s an underlying reason, but we prefer static “truths” that make us feel like everything’s going to be alright.