[FoRK] Why Won’t They Listen?,‘The Righteous Mind'

Bill Kearney wkearney99 at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 5 10:21:48 PDT 2012

Change works better gradually, and usually in small quantities. 
Evolution makes that clear.  Changing one or two aspects of anything is 
usually a lot more likely to succeed than trying to jam a dozen of them 
all together at once.  Yes, it can happen that way, but not as often.

This doesn't immediately help someone disenfranchised by the status quo, 
but few things happen fast enough to accomplish that.

One failing a lot of 'rational' folks seem to make is ignoring the 
masses inability to change too many things at one time.  And to resist 
the temptation from using insulting or otherwise destructive rhetoric 
against them in the process.  Calling things painful or pointless does 
more to harm the process of change than to help it.  Sure, the 
underlying premise of pain or pointlessness may be true, but waving the 
red flag in front of the bull doesn't calm it down.  If anything it 
further entrenches bad behaviors.

So it comes as no surprise to read of Haidt's perspective.  There's some 
sense to it, at least from reading that NYT article.

Personally I've met far more conservative people with open minds than 
any professing to be liberal.  Not for lack of exposure, to be sure, as 
I generally dislike participating in anything arrogant enough to call 
itself "conservative".  But many of the more liberally inclined people 
I've dealt with seem fixated on change for it's own sake, with little 
more than thinly disguised contempt for the needs/perspectives of those 
they claim to oppose.  Thus it's no surprise how little traction their 
contempt gets them, or how easily it's exploited.  Not that this is a 
good thing, as the opportunities for gradual change keep getting lost, 
further widening the gulf.


On 4/5/2012 12:26 PM, Stephen Williams wrote:
> The only real question is how painful the pointless struggle is
> going to be.

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