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 themadfiddler
Joined: 12/9/2009
Msg: 34
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness? Page 2 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)


Scientist believe in theories that cannot yet be proven~ just to mention one thing. They have faith in the unknown and unproven (trying to prove stuff)~ I just wanted to hear the answer to that question from someone within the scientific community. Call it expanding my creative mind.


Belief does not enter into science. It is a method of observation. First off, remember that "theory" in science does not mean the same thing as it does in typical language. In science, "theory" means an entire modality or way of understanding something, based on entire systems of working hypotheses of repeated evidence. It doesn't mean a "notion" of something that might work. Unfortunately it has been so **stardized as a word, it has come to mean this in common parlance so theory means for most people the same thing as educated guess.

The scientific method is not to allow "belief" to enter into the discussion at at. It is to hypothesize that if you perform certain actions, then certain results will happen repeatedly in accordance with natural laws. If they do not, then you do not have a grasp of the principles at work and must re-hypothesize/re formulate the experiment.

So belief need not enter into this principle at all. If belief enters into the process at all, it's at the level of curiosity, well before the hypothesis takes place...at the stage of "I wonder if..." at the point of human curiousity that we all have. But rather than make the leap of faith, the scientist makes the methodical steps. If one wanted to make any religious comparison, it reminds me more of the Buddhist meditation of Neti, Neti..."not this, not that" where the meditator asks themself "Who am I?" and slowly strips away the titles...I am the one who asks? No not this. I am myself? No not that. Eventually arriving at enlightenment.

Science, as a process, doesn't need belief specifically because it is a methodology of testing.
 xlr8ingmargo
Joined: 7/28/2009
Msg: 35
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 3/8/2010 10:13:11 AM
Once again I thank you all for answering my questions.
It feels good to know you care enough to do so.
 nipoleon
Joined: 12/27/2005
Msg: 36
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 3/8/2010 10:26:52 AM
Is science a religion ?......... NO !
There is a very simple test to prove this.

There is no way to convince a religionist that his beliefs are not true.
A belief is a belief and nothing more. Anyone can believe anything and there's nothing wrong with that.
The religious cling to their beliefs despite all empirical evidence to the contrary.
And......... there's nothing wrong with that.

The true scientist is willing to change his beliefs when given contrary evidence.
If GRAVITY were proven to be untrue.........
Every true scientist would immediately and gladly change their beliefs in the face of solid evidence.

Beliefs are beliefs and nothing more than that.
Knowledge is different from a belief.

I believe GOD exists........ but I have no knowledge to prove it.
That's what makes it a belief.
 LeCutter
Joined: 2/25/2009
Msg: 37
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 3/8/2010 6:57:38 PM

The Republican party not only considers these things unimportant, they act as if they were character flaws.


Zing! It's true. Conservatism by its very definition precludes being open-minded and given to critical-reasoning.
 LeCutter
Joined: 2/25/2009
Msg: 38
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 3/8/2010 6:59:09 PM

As practiced and approved of by Democrats, so-called "critical thinking" and "openmindedness" are character flaws.


Uh huh. And I guess like Dubya you're the "decider" on this are you? LOL!
 itsallinthesoul
Joined: 6/26/2009
Msg: 40
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 3/10/2010 6:19:19 AM
As others have said, one only has to read threads in POF Forums to see the shortage of both. It appears that many are focused on being "right" and rarely acknowledge that perhaps with different information they may come to a different definition of "right" for themselves.

I teach my children that you never stop learning and that they have a responsibility to themselves to "evolve" their opinions/beliefs because what may be true for them today, may not be true to them 20 years from now. Staying "open of mind" to the possibility that they hold a belief based on erroneous information is critical to that "evolution" of who they are.

My son is now almost 16 and he has internalized many of the things I've tried to impart onto him as his mom. I am glad to know that he is "finding himself" even if that means moving away from my beliefs....he internalized the staying "open of mind" thing well. In some ways, the student has become the teacher because he debates with me on issues and brings new things to light that I had not considered.
 aremeself
Joined: 12/31/2008
Msg: 41
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 3/10/2010 11:03:30 AM
star

I pick on evolutions weaknesses, of which there is much.

for example you haven't explained to me how the information for bones came out of thin air in animals, as I am pretty sure it wasn't in the supposed primordial soup.

you pick on me, and my way of thinking.

AND most have 100% faith in scientist as to there reasons to believe in many scientific ideas pertaining to all sorts of perceived biological reasoning to believe in evolutionary ideologies
what I am saying is that they don't have a clue as to why, they just believe because scientist have said so.

I'll be waiting for another personal attack.
 arwen52
Joined: 3/13/2008
Msg: 42
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How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/22/2010 12:28:07 PM

That question (although a very interesting one), can not be answered. Why not? Simply because it all comes down to each person personal belief, way of seeing things etc.. So at best, you will end up finding people who may disagree with each other or of course, agree with each other!

No, critical thinking is not about personal belief, it is about looking at facts. Facts are measurable, observable, repeatable. Beliefs do not have to answer to facts. This is a distinguishing factor between beliefs and facts. Critical thinking is an analysis of facts and adjust when new facts are discovered. Beliefs do not have to answer to facts and do not have to adjust to new information. In fact, beliefs usually resist new information and discourage critical thinking.


The only bad Idea is an idea that was never told

Well, let's apply a little critical thinking to that statement. Was the Holocaust a good idea? Was slavery a good idea? Was intentionally infecting the American Indians with smallpox a good idea? Was the genocide of the Tutsis in Rwanda a good idea? Was the Inquisition a good idea? Was burning women as witches a good idea? People are full of bad ideas. Hardly a day goes by that I or someone around me doesn't come up with a bad idea. So, I would say the statement has no merit. If you want more evidence to support my position, I'll be happy to bore you with it.


As a measure of their importance
I would say their balance is more important than either individual factor

You say that as if they are somehow in opposition to each other. Critical thinking requires open-mindedness. Critical thinking looks at *facts,* not opinions, and adjusts when there is new information. In order to engage in critical thinking, one must be open to change. Open-minded does not mean that you have to accept everything, no matter how ridiculous. It is a willingness to accept new information, new possibilities, but possibilities grounded in reality. Critical thinking requires open mindedness.


I would ask how is critical thinking formed with children? What causes children to be open-minded? How do we encourage more of the above ?

Children are naturally curious, natural scientists. Staying out of their way, letting them explore, and encouraging their inquiring minds is a place to start. Their ability to become critical thinkers is something that develops over time. A two year old does not have the same intellectual capacity of a ten year old. However, by the time a child is in grade school they are beginning to develop some capacity for critical thinking. I remember my first lesson in this while watching a TV commercial for Ivory dish soap. I was only in first grade. It claimed that if you used it, as opposed to the other brands of dish soap, that your hands would be soft and not red and irritated. My mom had been complaining about her hands and I said, "Mom, you should use Ivory!" My mom said, "I have news for you, I *do* use Ivory!" She then explained about advertising claims. It was an early lesson on critical thinking. From then on, I looked at advertising differently.

There are an infinite number of opportunities every day to develop, and teach children to develop, critical thinking.


I am open minded to almost an extreme, sometimes like children can be. I am very creative and usually speak my mind and act almost impulsively when in an enviroment [sic] when I am able to. That spontaneous nature of mine I embrace dearly because in my travels I have made few friends that truly empathize with that character quality.

Speaking without reservation is not the same as being open minded. Maybe listening to someone does. Being impulsive has nothing to do with being open minded. Creativity and open-mindedness are not the same thing. I know some very creative artists who are, in many aspects of their lives, rigid and narrow-minded. Open-mindedness is being open to new thoughts, ideas, possibilities. It does not mean you have to accept every ridiculous notion that comes down the pike. Critical thinking has nothing to do with hiding your true nature. None of this has anything to do with spontaneity.
 arwen52
Joined: 3/13/2008
Msg: 43
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How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/22/2010 12:37:03 PM
Do you then believe that science is a religion?

Science has to do with the natural world and observable, repeatable, measurable facts. Religion has to do with belief and does not have to answer to facts. Science adjusts to new information. Religion does not. Science is based on evidence. Religion is not. Religion addresses the non-material. Science in and of itself is essentially value-neutral, though the ethics of science is a subject to be considered. But ethics addresses our values and how they are applied to science. I.e. can we artificially inseminate a human egg is a scientific question. Should we artificially inseminate a human egg is an ethical question and applies values to whether something is desirable or not. Religion is a lot about values. Religion is a system of beliefs. Science is a system of inquiry. Religion generally discourages critical thinking and inquiry. Science is based on it.

So no, I would not say that science fits the definition of a religion and religion does not fit the definition of science.


Scientist believe in theories that cannot yet be proven~ just to mention one thing. They have faith in the unknown and unproven (trying to prove stuff)~ I just wanted to hear the answer to that question from someone within the scientific community. Call it expanding my creative mind.

Not true. Science, by definition, is based on that which *can* be proven. Religion is based on that which cannot be proven.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 44
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/22/2010 12:40:12 PM

If we live in a world that doesn't push these qualities to the forefront, how might that effect our future?

Look at election campaigns for a real world example of how pandering to the lowest common denominator affects everyone.
 chrono1985
Joined: 11/20/2004
Msg: 46
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/23/2010 8:55:42 PM
I used to think it not a problem to not push the concepts on those that avoid them, but recently I've gotten so sick of tech support lines and chat rooms full of individuals that seem to work from the same steps as tech support that I'm leaning towards it should be enforced as early and often as possible.

It's all to often I will encounter problems and first try tech support or a chat room related to the problem to see if others have had a similar experience. All the while encountering people that don't bother to think about the facts presented, and ignore the concept that because the problem is not found through ordinary means of searching (books, search engines, tech manuals, whatever) that it does in fact exist. No idea why I do that, all it does is waste half hour to an hour before I go and apply the critical thinking myself.

One direct example of failure of critical thinking abilities came from where I least expected it, a website where I learned all the gritty details about a particular software and even further from the person that divulged all those details. I was attempting to automate a boringly repetitive task, the person presented software which did exactly that. The software failed because it was not able to create some intermediate files it needed during the automation process. Long story short I offended him when I gave up on listening to his suggestions, which were nowhere near related to the problem, he would have noticed had he employed any degree of critical thinking. Upon solving the problem I presented the steps I took to him, even posted it up in a how to article on the related website. This guy took it at such great offense that he now treats me like crap, any comment I make now in a conversation gets berated by him no matter how well thought or relevant it is. It was clear to the others in that particular website he just couldn't handle that the solution didn't fit into his closed view on the subject, one guy even got into a long argument with him over how arrogant that was. The worst part is that this wasn't a child behaving like this, but a grown man (that I am sure of).

I imagine those types of occurrences are pretty common when dealing with close-minded people, I can see how it would result in a lot of unneeded grief, even suppression of novel ideas that could bring some much needed insight to a particular concept. The two often go hand in hand from what I've seen, people that tend towards critical thinking are usually open to the idea they do not have all the facts or that what they view as fact is not as true as they believe it is.

I really think this world would be a much better place had critical thinking and open mindedness been preached as much as the bible has.
 Island home
Joined: 7/5/2009
Msg: 47
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/24/2010 2:51:27 AM

I really think this world would be a much better place had critical thinking and open mindedness been preached as much as the bible has.


Amen
 Island home
Joined: 7/5/2009
Msg: 48
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/24/2010 5:01:37 AM
I said

As a measure of their importance
I would say their balance is more important than either individual factor

Arwen52 said

You say that as if they are somehow in opposition to each other. Critical thinking requires open-mindedness. Critical thinking looks at *facts,* not opinions, and adjusts when there is new information. In order to engage in critical thinking, one must be open to change. Open-minded does not mean that you have to accept everything, no matter how ridiculous. It is a willingness to accept new information, new possibilities, but possibilities grounded in reality. Critical thinking requires open mindedness.


I don't believe they are in opposition, but I do believe they are required to work in harmony to work at their optimum.
An open mind can let every thing in. Part of what a critical mind can do is decide what is fact. If the thinking is too critical it will reject fact along with everything else.

I would think a good critical mind would distinguish between facts and opinions and utilise both in their rightful context
 Ubiquitous.
Joined: 11/7/2009
Msg: 50
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/26/2010 12:01:14 AM

The Republican party not only considers these things unimportant, they act as if they were character flaws.

...speaking of open-mindedness
 Ubiquitous.
Joined: 11/7/2009
Msg: 51
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/26/2010 12:37:10 AM

historical events like the housing crisis, the BP oil spill, etc., have shown that regulation of the market is necessary, for myriad valid, economic reasons.

A surface level understanding of these events suggests that. A more complete understanding reveals that these are failures of the regulatory state.

If you actually took the time to engage in civil discussion rather than egotistical bullshi*t, you'd figure this out. In Dukky's thread, I already showed you in great detail how the regulatory state caused the housing bubble. In the BP thread, I challenge you to show me what a failure of a regulatory state looks like if this BP accident isn't one.

The deep water drilling licence was granted by lobbying government agencies. Shallow water drilling licences were rejected via lobbying regulatory agencies. BP was granted a categorical exclusion from liability for economic damages via lobbying the regulatory agencies. The part of the Gulf this accident took place on was, and still is, under the full authority and oversight of the Dept. of the Interior and the Dept. of Energy and de facto ownership of the United States government, and was therefore fully vulnerable to lobbying interests. It was not under the control of private citizens/organizations who actually have a personal incentive to maintain the integrity of their asset.

The Gulf incident could not have been a failure of the free market because it wasn't a free market of any kind. It was and still is an explicitly regulated market. Only complete economic illiterates would blame the free market for the failure of a "market" utterly regulated by the government.

Your solution, "More regulation!" has been tried for decades and has only produced worse results over the years. It's time for the system to be changed.








<div class="quote">disappear for a while
There goes your ego again.

Just because some weeks I have more free time than others doesn't mean I "disappear" to 'hide', as you no doubt are implying. Especially not from intellectual non-threats like yourself. I simply prioritize my time.

I'm finding the intellectual environment here more and more wanting as time goes on. You are a prototypical example of the kind of ageist poster who is more interested in maintaining a pompous image and/or is interested in mocking views rather than one who wants to civilly trade information for the mutual discovery of truth.

It's sickening.
 Ubiquitous.
Joined: 11/7/2009
Msg: 53
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/26/2010 9:38:07 AM

Illogical arguments and shallow, sophomoric, Rush-like entendres usually are.

Yeah, like ageist ad-hominems posing as genuine interest. Quit victimizing yourself and pretending you're not a hypocrite. You've actively attacked my parents, my customers, and myself in posts where all I did was present points. I've attempted, numerous times, to keep discussions with you on-topic. But you refuse to go along and instead attack the messenger while utterly ignoring the message.

"You're not as objective and truth-oriented as you pretend to be"






You showed me, or anyone, nothing in other threads

Ha. I'm pretty darn sure I've shown you quite a bit. Just because you refuse to look doesn't mean something hasn't been shown to you. As for others, that is matter of factly not true as has been revealed to me in several posts and PMs.

But A+ work for making yet more gross generalizations and speaking on the behalf of everyone else rather than letting them do their own talking.








Try more effective, biased-less regulation, as my posts have suggested.

It's truly sad if you honestly think this isn't exactly what has been tried for decades. "More regulation". "Better regulation"." More carefully-planned central government controls". "Now we know what needs to be done."

It. Has. Not. Worked. It has made things worse. The regulatory state has and continues to fail. It turned our middle-class-expanding, poverty-demolishing, rapidly-growing economy on its head and now constricts wealth and encourages businesses to waste enormous amounts of time and resources lobbying, lawyering, and accounting rather than doing business.





In conclusion, you continue to ignore the valid points brought before you. You made the positive claim that the Gulf incident is an example of a failure of "the free market". I showed you how it couldn't have been anything other than a failure of the regulated state using real, factual assertions. But you continue to ignore it - as you ignore every other point that I've made.

You do this and then say I only post "hyperbole".

Actually engage me or ignore me. Pretending that you actually care about these topics, yet refusing to debate them, is ridiculous.

It's depressing, and yet again, ironic, how you are behaving this way in a thread whose subject is critical thinking and open-mindedness.
 Ubiquitous.
Joined: 11/7/2009
Msg: 55
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How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/26/2010 10:05:27 PM
Oh, so you still can't put up a meaningful reply? You still have nothing to say in response to my on-point critiques of your thinking? You still cling onto your fundamentalist notion that this Gulf spill is a failure of free markets?

It's obvious you don't care about the topic. You're not open-minded enough to challenge your views in a civil debate of ideas. Nope. Instead of spending this time actually discussing and analyzing the facts with me - as I have tried to do numerous times with you, peacefully - all you're doing is continuing to attack me in a sad attempt to bate me into frustration. You do this time and time again. It's hilarious how transparent you are.

As I said before, you are about as intellectually stimulating as an eggplant. Instead of giving me relevant points to consider, you engage in ad-hominem bigotry.
 itsallinthesoul
Joined: 6/26/2009
Msg: 56
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/27/2010 7:17:39 AM
What a boring world we would live in if everything thought the same way, did the same things.....

Still though, watching you two go at each other I feel like someone should get in between you two and send you to your rooms!
 desertrhino
Joined: 11/30/2007
Msg: 58
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How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/27/2010 11:13:27 AM
Very important lesson:

Never argue with a fool, for he will drag you down to his level and then bludgeon you with experience.
 Ubiquitous.
Joined: 11/7/2009
Msg: 59
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/27/2010 11:49:21 AM

Easier to ignore a fool than to attempt to discuss with him or her.

I've told you, numerous times, to either enter a civil debate of ideas with me - as I have tried time and time again with you - or to ignore me:


"If you don't want to engage in discussion with me, then ignore me."
"Actually engage me or ignore me."


You refused to do either, deciding instead to continue resorting to bigotry by attacking me rather than my ideas.

Then you victimize yourself like you're doing right now.






I've ignored you. When you post within my proximity in threads I'm involved in, I respond to you, civilly, with my own points. But you won't have it. Despite the fact numerous other posters openly admit that my ideas are compelling and have admitted both in public and in private that I raise valid and interesting point, you still would rather waste time simply calling me names rather than putting forth any ideas to compete with mine. You attack the messenger, not the message. I have enough self-esteem to not let you get away with it. But your ego appears to have such a grip over your psyche that you are genuinely convinced that I start these scuffles. It's sad, really.

No, I don't start them. But I do finish them.







I honestly deplore these retarded fights. They waste time and are intellectually benign. They bore me. So I actually went out of my way and confided in one of the regulars here I respect and asked what more I could do to avoid conflict, specifically with Krebby and with other posters. This was their response:

"Try to enter the discussion with a desire to learn and see where other people are coming from. From what I have seen, you have done this. I think Krebby might still be coming from a place of your posting history, which is a lack of growth on his part.

You should have seen how some posters used to go after ______ and me! Try not to take it personally, or you will lose your cool. When you lose your cool, you lose control over the case you are making and the discussions becomes about emotional content rather than factual claims. Just ignore Krebby's barbs."



The above poster isn't "on my side" by any stretch of the imagination. They're just someone I admire for their ability to avoid this kind of confrontation. That's why I went to them to seek advice. The only reason I'm posting this is so Krebby can actually see a more objective perspective of these situations he and I find ourselves in.









Using empirically questionable "sources"

The majority of my sources come from venerated Ph.Ds, globally-respected research agencies, and from university websites. Even the vast majority of my YouTube links point to acclaimed professors discussing economics and history.

You, on the other hand, rarely post anything to verify what (little) you actually say.

You conveniently detail very few ideas when you respond to me because you commit yourself to ad hominem bigotry rather than friendly debate that leads to mutual intellectual growth. This works well because it gives you little need to post any sources.







In conclusion, I am actively engaging in friendly conversation with several posters in various threads here. I maintain a focus on the ideas put forth because they do the same. We are having a friendly debate of ideas. This kind of discourse is mutually beneficial and leads to intellectual growth on both parts.

These are the kind of discussions I like to have. It's why I'm here.

I've tried, numerous times with Krebby to discuss ideas. I've exhausted myself putting up with his ignorant attacks against my business, my age, and my parents. I've tried to ignore them, hoping he would be intellectually honest enough to lay down the sword. But he hasn't. And I'm fed up with it. The only way anyone is going to get through to this guy is by exposing fire with fire.

Every time he attacks me personally, I will attack him personally.

Maybe then he'll set aside his academic pomp and actually give some respect those who have differing ideas.

Other posters are fully capable of and enjoy having a friendly, civil debate of ideas with me. They don't get offended when I offer a competing perspective. They don't attack me or my age or my business or my parents in such discussions. In fact, several posters here have actually admitted that what I say is persuasive. So why does Krebby refuse to debate my ideas civilly?


That's what I try to do with him. And when he doesn't - when he continues to attack me and not my ideas - I tell him to either ignore me or to stick to the issues..... after exposing fire with fire.


He refuses to play nice. He has demonstrated numerous times that he does not read my posts thoroughly. When he does engage my ideas, he grossly distorts my position and attacks straw men. He makes outlandish claims like Goldman Sachs is my "champion" when, if he actually took the time to discuss these issues with me, he'd know I deplore that state-sucking company. I've said it publicly, here. But he has this caricature of me embedded in his mind. He attacks that, thinking he's bringing up valid points against me.

I hope some day he can calm down and stick to the issues. Or at the very least, ignore me. Believe it or not, I do not enjoy this kind of conversations. I much prefer intellectually stimulating exchanges.
 Technical Buddha
Joined: 3/11/2005
Msg: 60
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/27/2010 5:52:32 PM
When its a matter of life and death for you or a loved one, would you rather be dogmatic or logical and open minded?


A bad example being:

Would you deny your spouse a heart transplant needed in order to live based on your beliefs, the spouse's beliefs, or both...

or

Would you allow the transplant despite that in order to maybe save your spouse's life?

I place a pretty high value of importance on it, as I view it as something necessary to survival in ancient times, in today's society, and in the future.
 itsallinthesoul
Joined: 6/26/2009
Msg: 62
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/28/2010 9:44:48 PM

Critical thinking and open mindedness is all about leaving one's own biases behind and listening to "data" that is most essential to the person affected.


Let's put that to the test....

If your loved one was diagnosed with a terminal illness that was sure to leave their dignity destroyed at the end. If they were told that all they could expect was to waste away to nothing and deal with a lot of pain, could you ask them to accept that fate? If they told you they wanted to kill themselves, how would you react?

Some situations in life make it very difficult to leave one's biases (feelings/values/morals) out of it. There are definately some areas where critical thinking comes easily and some were it doesn't.
 itsallinthesoul
Joined: 6/26/2009
Msg: 64
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/29/2010 7:26:05 PM
Last week, not far from where I live, a 16 year old boy jumped off an overpass and was struck by a car and killed. His funeral was today. What a waste.....

My grandfather passed from cancer at the age of 76 following 3 long months of care in a pallative care unit....wasting away to nothing but a skeleton with skin. Often in pain that required medication, I watched him slowly leave us. As hard as it is, I cannot seem to remember him the way he was, only the way he was in the end. It was sad that in the end, his body was living but who he was just wasn't there. I know I would never want to die the way he did.

If I was diagnosed with terminal cancer, I would want to be allowed to terminate my life before I got to the point that my grandfather did. I would not want my loved ones to see me whither and die and have that image burned into their brain forever.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 65
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 6/29/2010 8:36:09 PM

A surface level understanding of these events suggests that. A more complete understanding reveals that these are failures of the regulatory state.

Your more complete understanding is quite naive. The reality is (and argument that don't account for reality are meaningless), that we have regulations on industries because industries created situations that pissed a lot of people off enough to demand regulations. For example, I don't see anyone imposing a restriction on guitars that requires them to have six strings. Why? Because mislabeling a guitar to make more money probably never occured to a guitar manufacturer as a business model. On the other hand, dumping crap into rivers has occurred to a lot of industries as a business model. Enough to threaten senate and congressional seats if the incumbants didn't do something. Just because the industries are able to influence the regulations and those who are supposed to enforce regulations is not an argument against regulations. It's an argument for putting those people in jail.

I'll be happy to let industries go unregulated if those responsible for running the industries are willing to let me be unregulated so that I can decide to hunt them down if they piss me off. (See the article, Assassination Politics by Jim Bell). That would work for me.
 arwen52
Joined: 3/13/2008
Msg: 67
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History
How important is critical thinking and open-mindedness?
Posted: 7/23/2010 4:02:06 PM

Part of what a critical mind can do is decide what is fact. If the thinking is too critical it will reject fact along with everything else.


Facts are measurable, observable, repeatable.


If the thinking is too critical it will reject fact along with everything else.

No, critical thinking observes *facts*. If you are rejecting facts, you are not engaging in critical thinking. as for "rejecting fact along with everything else," - what else are you referring to?

As for the discussions about terminal illness, what would you do, etc. . . . You are getting into an entirely different area. You are talking about emotion, values, attitudes. A person can look at all the factors involved - what is the prognosis, what are treatment options, what are the probably outcomes, how much pain will I have to endure, what is/will be the quality of life, etc., etc. - rationally but those decisions are not entirely rational. So, can you apply a certain amount of critical thinking to it? Sure. But there are a host of factors to be considered and some of them are not entirely rational.

Here's some interesting (at least to me) definitions and thoughts about critical thinking. Remember, the original question was "How important is critical thinking and open mindedness?" My answer is that they are *very* important and not very common.

http://www.criticalthinking.com/company/articles/critical-thinking-definition.jsp


What is Critical Thinking?
Critical Thinking Definition
September, 2005, by The Critical Thinking Co.™ Staff
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The Critical Thinking Co.™
"Critical thinking is the identification and evaluation of evidence to guide decision making. A critical thinker uses broad in-depth analysis of evidence to make decisions and communicate his/her beliefs clearly and accurately."

Other Definitions of Critical Thinking:

Robert H. Ennis, Author of The Cornell Critical Thinking Tests
"Critical thinking is reasonable, reflective thinking that is focused on deciding what to believe and do."

A SUPER-STREAMLINED CONCEPTION OF CRITICAL THINKING
Robert H. Ennis, 6/20/02

Assuming that critical thinking is reasonable reflective thinking focused on deciding what to believe or do, a critical thinker:

1. Is open-minded and mindful of alternatives
2. Tries to be well-informed
3. Judges well the credibility of sources
4. Identifies conclusions, reasons, and assumptions
5. Judges well the quality of an argument, including the acceptability of its reasons, assumptions, and evidence
6. Can well develop and defend a reasonable position
7. Asks appropriate clarifying questions
8. Formulates plausible hypotheses; plans experiments well
9. Defines terms in a way appropriate for the context
10. Draws conclusions when warranted, but with caution
11. Integrates all items in this list when deciding what to believe or do

Critical Thinkers are disposed to:

1. Care that their beliefs be true, and that their decisions be justified; that is, care to "get it right" to the extent possible. This includes the dispositions to

a. Seek alternative hypotheses, explanations, conclusions, plans, sources, etc., and be open to them
b. Endorse a position to the extent that, but only to the extent that, it is justified by the information that is available
c. Be well informed
d. Consider seriously other points of view than their own

2. Care to present a position honestly and clearly, theirs as well as others'. This includes the dispositions to

a. Be clear about the intended meaning of what is said, written, or otherwise communicated, seeking as much precision as the situation requires
b. Determine, and maintain focus on, the conclusion or question
c. Seek and offer reasons
d. Take into account the total situation
e. Be reflectively aware of their own basic beliefs

3. Care about the dignity and worth of every person (a correlative disposition). This includes the dispositions to

a. Discover and listen to others' view and reasons
b. Avoid intimidating or confusing others with their critical thinking prowess, taking into account others' feelings and level of understanding
c. Be concerned about others' welfare

Critical Thinking Abilities:

Ideal critical thinkers have the ability to
(The first three items involve elementary clarification.)

1. Focus on a question

a. Identify or formulate a question
b. Identify or formulate criteria for judging possible answers
c. Keep the situation in mind

2. Analyze arguments

a. Identify conclusions
b. Identify stated reasons
c. Identify unstated reasons
d. Identify and handle irrelevance
e. See the structure of an argument
f. Summarize

3. Ask and answer questions of clarification and/or challenge, such as,

a. Why?
b. What is your main point?
c. What do you mean by…?
d. What would be an example?
e. What would not be an example (though close to being one)?
f. How does that apply to this case (describe a case, which might well appear to be a counter example)?
g. What difference does it make?
h. What are the facts?
i. Is this what you are saying: ____________?
j. Would you say some more about that?

(The next two involve the basis for the decision.)

4. Judge the credibility of a source. Major criteria (but not necessary conditions):

a. Expertise
b. Lack of conflict of interest
c. Agreement among sources
d. Reputation
e. Use of established procedures
f. Known risk to reputation
g. Ability to give reasons
h. Careful habits

5. Observe, and judge observation reports. Major criteria (but not necessary conditions, except for the first):

a. Minimal inferring involved
b. Short time interval between observation and report
c. Report by the observer, rather than someone else (that is, the report is not hearsay)
d. Provision of records.
e. Corroboration
f. Possibility of corroboration
g. Good access
h. Competent employment of technology, if technology is useful
i. Satisfaction by observer (and reporter, if a different person) of the credibility criteria in Ability # 4 above.

(The next three involve inference.)

6. Deduce, and judge deduction

a. Class logic
b. Conditional logic
c. Interpretation of logical terminology in statements, including
(1) Negation and double negation
(2) Necessary and sufficient condition language
(3) Such words as "only", "if and only if", "or", "some", "unless", "not both".

7. Induce, and judge induction

a. To generalizations. Broad considerations:
(1) Typicality of data, including sampling where appropriate
(2) Breadth of coverage
(3) Acceptability of evidence
b. To explanatory conclusions (including hypotheses)
(1) Major types of explanatory conclusions and hypotheses:
(a) Causal claims
(b) Claims about the beliefs and attitudes of people
(c) Interpretation of authors’ intended meanings
(d) Historical claims that certain things happened (including criminal accusations)
(e) Reported definitions
(f) Claims that some proposition is an unstated reason that the person actually used
(2) Characteristic investigative activities
(a) Designing experiments, including planning to control variables
(b) Seeking evidence and counter-evidence
(c) Seeking other possible explanations
(3) Criteria, the first five being essential, the sixth being desirable
(a) The proposed conclusion would explain the evidence
(b) The proposed conclusion is consistent with all known facts
(c) Competitive alternative explanations are inconsistent with facts
(d) The evidence on which the hypothesis depends is acceptable.
(e) A legitimate effort should have been made to uncover counter-evidence
(f) The proposed conclusion seems plausible

8. Make and judge value judgments: Important factors:

a. Background facts
b. Consequences of accepting or rejecting the judgment
c. Prima facie application of acceptable principles
d. Alternatives
e. Balancing, weighing, deciding

[ . . . some snipped for brevity, you can go to the link above for the entire page]

13. Proceed in an orderly manner appropriate to the situation. For example:

a. Follow problem solving steps
b. Monitor one's own thinking (that is, engage in metacognition)
c. Employ a reasonable critical thinking checklist

14. Be sensitive to the feelings, level of knowledge, and degree of sophistication of others

15. Employ appropriate rhetorical strategies in discussion and presentation (orally and in writing), including employing and reacting to "fallacy" labels in an appropriate manner.

Examples of fallacy labels are "circularity," "bandwagon," "post hoc," "equivocation," "non sequitur," and "straw person."


Dewey, John
Critical thinking is "active, persistent, and careful consideration of any belief or supposed form of knowledge in the light of the grounds that support it and the further conclusions to which it tends (Dewey 1933: 118)."
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