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OT: He who knows only his own side

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Oct 18, 2005
We have had some real flame wars recently, but this is a very old issue, and here is some historical background. Flame wars are hardly new - just watch the politics anywhere.

A lot of recent discussions are dominated by people talking loudly past one another, and never getting to the core issues, most often the deciding issues. This often appears in the form of asserting low reading comprehension.

And the inability to craft an argument capable of persuading opponents (versus the choir) is a root cause. This is not a new issue, as the following quotes demonstrate.

"He who knows only his own side of the case, knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side; if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion." -- John Stuart Mill, Ch. II: Of the Liberty of Thought and Discussion.

John Stuart Mill - Wikiquote

War story: When I was at the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) in the early 1970s, one lawyer there commented to me that another lawyer that we both knew could not understand an argument that she did not believe in, which was professionally crippling.

And then there is the parallel matter of motivation:

"Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters." --
Daniel Webster

Quote Details: Daniel Webster: Good intentions will always... - The Quotations Page

Roberts Rules of Order were invented to regulate such debates.

What planet are you residing on ?

Post this "Stuff" elsewhere like "Farcebook".
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