follow CCP

Recent blog entries
popular papers

Science Curiosity and Political Information Processing

What Is the "Science of Science Communication"?

Climate-Science Communication and the Measurement Problem

Ideology, Motivated Cognition, and Cognitive Reflection: An Experimental Study

'Ideology' or 'Situation Sense'? An Experimental Investigation of Motivated Reasoning and Professional Judgment

A Risky Science Communication Environment for Vaccines

Motivated Numeracy and Enlightened Self-Government

Making Climate Science Communication Evidence-based—All the Way Down 

Neutral Principles, Motivated Cognition, and Some Problems for Constitutional Law 

Cultural Cognition of Scientific Consensus
 

The Tragedy of the Risk-Perception Commons: Science Literacy and Climate Change

"They Saw a Protest": Cognitive Illiberalism and the Speech-Conduct Distinction 

Geoengineering and the Science Communication Environment: a Cross-Cultural Experiment

Fixing the Communications Failure

Why We Are Poles Apart on Climate Change

The Cognitively Illiberal State 

Who Fears the HPV Vaccine, Who Doesn't, and Why? An Experimental Study

Cultural Cognition of the Risks and Benefits of Nanotechnology

Whose Eyes Are You Going to Believe? An Empirical Examination of Scott v. Harris

Cultural Cognition and Public Policy

Culture, Cognition, and Consent: Who Perceives What, and Why, in "Acquaintance Rape" Cases

Culture and Identity-Protective Cognition: Explaining the White Male Effect

Fear of Democracy: A Cultural Evaluation of Sunstein on Risk

Cultural Cognition as a Conception of the Cultural Theory of Risk

« Weekend update: paradox of scientific knowledge dissemination in the liberal state | Main | Where am I?... part 1 »
Friday
Nov172017

Where am I?... Part 2

Ummmm... this is typical view of the podium when I give a talk...

  But you can watch/listen at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktHtLIF8R6Q&feature=youtu.be.

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (29)

Facing a long prison sentence = facing a long sentence projected on a prison.

That slide's first bullet is a cold-blooded (attention span) killer. I can't quite make it out, but its guilt is readily apparent. The third and fourth are obviously complicit to varying degrees. The second is merely guilty by association.

November 17, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

@jonathan-- you may be right. But two things to consdier: (1) these are points that come after the examination of 2 experiments, which supply the motivation to try to figure out what's going on; (2) I use a visual technique in which I "unfurl" the sentence in pieces that fit the sort of speech/comprehension structure of the relevant sentence. You might not change your mind but you could easily find the point at which I do this in the video

November 18, 2017 | Registered CommenterDan Kahan

Dan,

I saw the video, and the unfurling technique. One of the PowerPoint lessons that was drummed into my head was that the bullets should complement and summarize what is said. They shouldn't be what is said. I think I recall the justification for this: that while the speaker is talking, it should be possible for the audience to use the short bullets to remind themselves (keep in working memory?) of the essential points without having to tune out the speaker for too long. However, your unfurling technique may have the ability to hammer a point simultaneously through two senses such that it can't easily be forgotten.

BTW: WTF happened to WTF? (political polarization slide #45) Self censorship?

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

FWIW, I find it very distracting to have someone give an oral explanation at essentially the same time I'm reading the same material on the screen - and that is especially true when the visual is text heavy. It makes me feel like my brain is being cleaved into two parts. One part is reading the material to myself while the other is trying to listen to the speaker.

Better, for someone like me, to provide the oral explanation first so I can concentrate on that, then display a bullet to drive home the "take home" summarizing point through repetition. Of course, other techniques will likely work better for other audience members.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Just stumbled on this:

You are having a debate with an artificial agent. The agent is trying to expose you to alternative perspectives regarding the claim that socialization and bias primarily explain differences between male and female performance in computer science.

http://collectivedebate.mit.edu/

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

YOU'RE DONE!
Thank you for participating.
Please let us know if you have any feedback or questions: collectivedebate@media.mit.edu

That's it? Not even any lame libtard jokes? Well, at least the conservative members of this blog community won't be replaced by robots anytime soon.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

You might find this interesting.

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/nov/16/james-damore-google-memo-interview-autism-regrets?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

It's interesting to me, because at the time of his firing, I wrote something to the effect of that I had a hard time figuring out whether he was thick (with respect to not anticipating the implications to others of what he wrote) or disingenuous. I didn't consider the possibility of autism playing a role. My bad for the false choice.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

I started, but gave up as soon as i saw that I had to select only one of the multiple opposing opinions to continue. That made no sense to me.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Joshua,

"I didn't consider the possibility of autism playing a role."

So, nature/autism is a valid excuse but nurture/chauvinism isn't?

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

I don't quite understand your question.

Here's what I wrote elsewhere (it's a bit harder to search this site effectively) - it was with respect to Damore saying that he didn't anticipate a "lot of negative connotations" from talking about why women are genetically predisposed towards neuroticism, (among other things):

Again, could go either way…. but the depth of cluelessness required may just go over the line between deniability that is plausible to deniability that just ain’t plausible.


Anyway, I wasn't suggesting excuse. It might help to explain why he was clueless as to the impact of what he wrote. It doesn't change the existence of his cluelessness. I was wondering if he was just unaware from an experience based framework, or deliberate in provoking people, and making an overtly political argument (and distributing it in an internal memo) and then denying it after the fact. Autism might help lay out an alternative explanation.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

"So, nature/autism is a valid excuse but nurture/chauvinism isn't?"

In the politically correct 'victimhood culture' that destroyed his career, yes it is. Disability is one of the protected categories that earns privileged treatment and immunity from criticism. Citing the published science on psychological sex differences isn't.

But I do like the way that the sub-heading and introduction to the story is contradicted by the content! That takes chutzpah! (Although it might just be that the journalist writing this article doesn't want to get destroyed too.)

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterNiV

"It might help to explain why he was clueless as to the impact of what he wrote. It doesn't change the existence of his cluelessness. I was wondering if he was just unaware from an experience based framework, or deliberate in provoking people, and making an overtly political argument (and distributing it in an internal memo) and then denying it after the fact."

His problem is explained in the article. He was too honest, and like a lot of honest people, assumed that Google was being honest in setting out its policy on open debate.

The idea that any employee can challenge company orthodoxy is important in Silicon Valley, which eschews the hierarchies that dominate in other parts of corporate America. Nowhere is this more the case than Google, which cultivates open debate on thousands of internal discussion groups and online forums. Google also vigorously promotes a culture of “psychological safety” among its staff, believing it imperative that employees feel empowered to voice ideas without feeling embarrassed or judged.

Company insiders say most employees are savvy enough to know it is unwise to take that mantra too literally. But when the organisers of internal meetings about Google’s policies on diversity and inclusion invited feedback, Damore decided to relay his thoughts.

Dissidents speaking up in other regimes that have also claimed to value open debate have suffered far worse. All he got was fired. Other places, he'd have been sent to Siberia for ten years, or worse. But it's been an object lesson in the true state of affairs that I don't think has been lost on anyone.

Although I think it's also possible that he knew very well what the dangers were, and there was an element of making himself a political martyr to bring it out into the open. A few people truly are brave enough to stick up for their principles. It's hard to tell, though.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterNiV

Lol. Speaking of Godwin.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Joshua,

The Guardian article seems to portray autism as a valid excuse (even if you don't), even though it says Damore doesn't do this himself. The article seems to me to convey the message: "Fellow liberals, you thought you were punching up, but you were really punching down."

I think the question of what confers excuse is a really interesting one in moral psych, as well as in justice. For example, what if Trump/Weinstein/Moore/CK/Cosby came out with an essentialist diagnosis that is seen to at least partially explain their predatory behavior?

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

NiV,

Related to our discussion from last week:
https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/11/18/562912732/to-save-their-water-supply-colorado-farmers-taxed-themselves

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

I didn't really read the article from the angle of how it seemed to portray Damore or what message it was trying to convey; more from a neutral angle of what new information there was to learn. I try to filter the seeming portrayal and message conveying - to the obviously less than complete extent that I'm able from my own biasing filters...

So yeah - I don't see it as an excuse, nor do I think that excuses are really germane. It is what it is, he is what he is. Didn't Tina Turner sing: "What's excuses got to do with it?" I'm more interested in the explanation. And in that sense, autism does seem to offer a possible "explanation" that I hadn't considered for how he could have been surprised by some reading "negative connotations" into being categorized as being generically predisposed to neuroticism by virtue of their gender. From someone autistic, it moves more from to the "just ain't plausible denial" category to the "maybe it is plausible denial" category. I'm less interested in Damore personally than I am in what he represents with regard to societal polarization and lack of meaningful communication across ideology.

That said, I don't know quite what you mean by: "Fellow liberals, you thought you were punching up, but you were really punching down."?

...

I think the question of what confers excuse is a really interesting one in moral psych, as well as in justice. For example, what if Trump/Weinstein/Moore/CK/Cosby came out with an essentialist diagnosis that is seen to at least partially explain their predatory behavior?

Indeed. IMO, the tension between "explanation" and "excuse" is very relevant these days, what with the "dating teenagers was much more common back then/I always asked mothers' permission before I dated their daughters," and "it was just locker room talk," and "I thought it was funny," IMO, in some sense all qualifying as explanations but being completely empty as excuses. Yet the the distinction between excuse and explanation is, obviously, dependent on perspective - as evidence by some who find what I consider to be mere"explanations" to be satisfactory as excuses.

Similarly, I'm interested in the tension between an explanation for why Damore was fired as opposed to an excuse for firing him. Looks like we'll have some court opinions to peruse in that regard.

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Joshua,

That said, I don't know quite what you mean by: "Fellow liberals, you thought you were punching up, but you were really punching down."?

"Punching up" refers to identifying what is believed to be the advantaged group (white men in tech) that is, through a representative (Damore), thought to be continuing to press its advantage (by using scientific findings as a rhetorical device to justify gender outcomes in tech), and attacking that advantaged group. Then Damore's autism is publicized, and suddenly he's more liberally-appropriately identified as representing a disadvantaged group. Hence the attacks on him are no longer justifiable by the standard liberal attack-advantaged-defend-disadvantaged metric.

BTW: Too bad 6'ers couldn't pull it off...

November 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

@Jonathan & @Joshua: you are right; thanks. Actuallly I never use "bullet points"; I usually reserve slides for graphic data reporting

November 19, 2017 | Registered CommenterDan Kahan

"NiV, Related to our discussion from last week:"

Yes, the answer to the 'tragedy of the commons' is to assign ownership of the resource and charge rent for it. Supply and demand then rations the supply properly. That's standard economics.

"what if Trump/Weinstein/Moore/CK/Cosby came out with an essentialist diagnosis that is seen to at least partially explain their predatory behavior?"

I suspect that in a lot of cases the "predatory behaviour" was mutual, going in both directions. But we're selective in our judgements.

"Yet the the distinction between excuse and explanation is, obviously, dependent on perspective - as evidence by some who find what I consider to be mere"explanations" to be satisfactory as excuses."

Yes, you can't reason an 'ought' from an 'is'.

The moral rules depend on context. Taking events out of one cultural context and putting them into another (especially taking events of the distant past and interpreting them in light of more recent changes in morality) can easily turn moral judgements backwards.

It means we have to consider not only our current cultural context when deciding whether to act, but all possible foreign and future ones. Tricky!

It's the same problem as retrospective law. We see a problem happening that is not illegal, so introduce a new law to ban it. Can we then go back and prosecute all the people who did it before the law was passed for their behaviour? There's a legal principle that says no. If law was purely about the morality, then one would argue that if it merits punishment now, then it merited punishment then. But we don't do that, because the point of codifying the law is to give certain prior knowledge about how behaviour will be judged. In most cases, that takes priority over even the morality of the situation.

November 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterNiV

Jonathan -

Thanks for that explanation. I wasn't looking at the situation through an up-down lens, but lens of the right and left punching horizontally w/r/t the question of whether genetics explain various aspects of our society better than bias and cultural influence.

Then Damore's autism is publicized, and suddenly he's more liberally-appropriately identified as representing a disadvantaged group. Hence the attacks on him are no longer justifiable by the standard liberal attack-advantaged-defend-disadvantaged metric.

I wonder about that. Seems to me that much of the response from the left might be more of the "So what does that have to do with the price of tea in China?" variety. Seems to me that people are just as likely to simply discount information that doesn't fit in convenient scenarios as they are to switch orientation on an issue based on previously articulated ideological foundations. Damore could just be the No True Autistic variant on the No True Scotsman gambit.

November 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

And yeah, that 3rd quarter was just brutal. I'm not sure if you're aware of the long-suffering burden of Philadelphia sports fans. That 3rd quarter fit right into the formula. I'm sure that everyone was waiting for the hammer to fall, but probably not even many Philly fans expected it to fall that hard.

November 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

On the subject of psychology finding links between personality traits and other stuff, I recently saw this:

https://www.econjobrumors.com/topic/funniest-retraction-ive-ever-seen-1

I thought Joshua might be amused. :-)

November 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterNiV

NiV,

I'm amused.

November 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Not sure - exactly, why I would find it amusing. I'm pretty skeptical about claims of linkages between personality traits and political ideology: (1) I'm skeptical that they exist (I haven't seen what I consider plausible causal mechanisms explained), and, (2) even if they do exist, my guess is that the intra-group differences would be much greater (and more meaningful) than the inter-group differences.

November 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Joshua,

A good intro/summary on the topic is here:
https://amandafriesen.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/ksiazkiewicz-and-friesen-ch-6.pdf

November 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Peterson interviews Haidt on disgust and other essentialist views (including getting the liberal/neurotic conservative/psychotic link backwards per the retraction NiV sent):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4IBegL_V6AA

November 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

Thanks. That's quite a combo. Not very far through it yet...but I'm looking for an answer to a question and haven't found it .

Say you have sets of twins. One raised in a leftwing family in a leftwing community. Another raised in a rightwing family in a rightwing community.

You look at the personality traits of the individual twins, and you find in each set that one tends towards neatness and order and the other towards novelty and exploration. Which factor would be a better predictor of their voting habits in 18 or so years hence..the level of neatness/attraction to exploration...or the attributes of the family and community in which they're raised? My guess it is the latter offers a better "explanation," and very significantly so. So even if what they are saying is true, I'm still wondering what it has to do with the price of tea in China.

They do seem to discuss some brain architecture stuff, but needless to say I'm dubious about that also, and even still it raises the question as to whether, even if there are associations between attributes of brain architecture and voting preferences, where the direction of causality lies, whether it is genetically or culturally explained, etc. etc. How does one person's brain architecture come to differ from another's? Is it because of their early or even pre-natal experiences? In the end, I'm just can't get past the feeling that these differences they're talking about don't help us to understand much about the real world. Of course, I readily admit that I'm heavily biased. They reference supporting evidence and they each give passing reference to caveats (although they don't seem to ever elaborate on the caveats) - which runs up against my lack of open-mindedness, but I'm still looking for them (well, mostly Haidt actually) to explain the relative strength of a variety of influences.

And thanks for that summary article you linked also. Will def take a look.

November 22, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Joshua,

"Say you have sets of twins. One raised in a leftwing family in a leftwing community. Another raised in a rightwing family in a rightwing community.
You look at the personality traits of the individual twins, and you find in each set that one tends towards neatness and order and the other towards novelty and exploration. Which factor would be a better predictor of their voting habits in 18 or so years hence..the level of neatness/attraction to exploration...or the attributes of the family and community in which they're raised?"

That summary paper explains the ACE model of twin testing. My understanding is that if some behavior has A > C + E, then the expectation is that genetics accounts for more variation in that behavior than the total environment, modulo the confounders mentioned in that paper. However, one could argue that because these studies are done in cases where the twins are raised together, where it's likely that they share most of their environment, that these results might not extend to twins raised apart in very different circumstances. That would be an excellent test case - see if twins raised separately and in very different political circumstances still behave as predicted by this model. Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of instances of twins raised apart to study.

C's finally dig a hole that they can't dig out of.

November 22, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

However, one could argue that because these studies are done in cases where the twins are raised together, where it's likely that they share most of their environment, that these results might not extend to twins raised apart in very different circumstances.

Yah. That. I'm only partly through but that was the first major question that popped into my head, and then I went back to read what you wrote and found that you were pointing to the issue that jumped out at me. Seems to me that it's a bit like an apples to oranges problem - as the environmental differences in different households in different communities is of such a magnitude and scope apart that they'd almost be an entirely different "type" of environmental differences. Of course, I've got other questions as well... will read more to see if they're answered.

Can't say I was exactly all broke up about the C's loss. To be pedantic , they did dig out of the hole... and lost largely because of that shot off the top of the backboard! Meanwhile, Embiid and Simmons both seemed to continue to demonstrate the possibility of being "generational" players in win over Portland (I kept toggling back and forth between the games). November 30th should be fun....like old times.

November 23, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>