Thursday, June 25, 2015

WTF, Marc and The President

It took me some time to get around to listening to this, but on the dog walk tonight I listened to the episode of Marc Maron's WTF podcast in which he spends an hour chatting with President Obama.

I know people got all excited about a word or two the President said, but man, are they missing the point.

This podcast is phenomenal, and I get to say that here because the two of them devote several minutes to discussing how we argue.

I cannot recommend the episode enough.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Borowitz's Thoughts about Idiots

The New Yorker published this gem from Andy Borowitz today.
According to the poll, conducted by the University of Minnesota’s Opinion Research Institute, while millions have been vexed for some time by their failure to explain incredibly basic information to dolts, that frustration has now reached a breaking point.
Of the many obvious things that people are sick and tired of trying to get through the skulls of stupid people, the fact that climate change will cause catastrophic habitat destruction and devastating extinctions tops the list, with a majority saying that they will no longer bother trying to explain this to cretins.
It goes on to list a few other things people don't want to have to explain again.

And yeah, it is frustrating (and exhausting) when overwhelming evidence fails to convince people of an argument's validity, but that just means we haven't put together the right argument yet.

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Finding a Level Playing Field

In the New York Times yesterday there were two columns that are best read together.

Taken together, these two columns call on readers to work towards the utopian vision of a political landscape where people critically examine their own views and listen to ideas from across the aisle without yelling or the rolling of eyes.

Coming at it from the left, Paul Krugman writes about people beating the same political drum no matter how many times they've been proven wrong.

Coming at it from the right, Arthur C. Brooks writes about how, despite our protests, the public clearly enjoys hateful political rhetoric.

Both writers call on readers to recognize their own biases and--even if it makes like-minded people a bit uncomfortable--stop to examine the political arguments that seem too good to be true.

Would that it were so.

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Printouts for most occassions - Album on Imgur

You should visit Imgur and read through all of these printouts for most occasions.

They are brilliant.

Ad Libs meets tax forms meets social niceties.