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Friday, September 10, 2004

CNN to World Terrorism

Stirling Newberry writes:
"In news the rule is that liberals will watch the news, and conservatives will watch conservative news. A liberal will watch to see what you think, the conservative will watch to see how much you agree with him. This is why the headline world is so far to the right even of the content."

This basically explains the difference between "true believers" and "true skeptics". Any news report showing a shred of skepticism will typically get weighed against other reports that support held beliefs, with the ratings winner getting the nod.

In essence there are two facets explaining why a skeptic enjoys his hobby:
  1. Proving something faulty through logic and reason
  2. Observing the strange, bizzare world of the human condition

So, it is equally likely that the skeptic will watch and listen to, for example, a Peak Oil denier operate as he would the Peak Oil doom-saying prognosticator armed with convincing numbers. On the other hand, the true believer will tune out alternate voices and reflexively listen to only what they already know.
"Tell people something they know already and they will thank you for it. Tell them something new and they will hate you for it." - George Monbiot

And why does this happen? The linguist George Lakoff has been cooking up a theory over the last few years. Thanks to Seeing The Forest for hammering home this point.


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