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Tuesday
Jan302018

More glossary entries: pattern recognition, professional judgment & situation sense

Again, complete (or more complete) document here.

Pattern recognition. A cognitive dynamic in which a person recognizes some object or state of affairs by matching it (preconciously) to a rapidly conjured set of prototypes acquired through experience. [Source: Margolis, H. (1987), Patterns, Thinking, and Cognition (Univ. Chicago Press. Date added Jan. 29, 2018.] 

Professional judgment.  Domain specific “habits of mind” (most likely specialized forms of pattern recognition) that guide domain experts (e.g., judges). [Source: Margolis, H. (1996), Dealing with risk : why the public and the experts disagree on environmental issues. (University of Chicago Press.). Date added Jan. 29, 2018.] 

Situation sense. Karl Llewellyn’s description of domain-specific habits of mind, acquired through education and experience, that enable judges and lawyers to rapidly and reliably converge on case outcomes notwithstanding the indeterminacy of formal legal norms. [Source: Llewellyn, K. (1989), The Case Law System in America (M. Ansaldi, Trans.).  Date added Jan. 29, 2018.]

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Reader Comments (26)

First year of college makes students more liberal ... and more conservative:

https://theconversation.com/does-college-turn-people-into-liberals-90905

February 2, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

Clearly, the students who developed more favorable views of liberals were the critics of politically correct post-modernist brainwashing on the part of their Marxist-Leninist professors. Their more favorable views if conservatives, in the other hand, is because of a natural tendency if people to become more open-minded, which in turn causes more skeptical (particularly about climate change) as they get older.

My guess, also, is that most likely that if they controlled for "smartness," the "smarter" students would be much more likely to look at conservatives more favorably and liberals less favorably.

February 2, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

I swear my autocorrect has a Freudian slip algorithm...

Replace "critic" above with "victim"... i.e., the students who became more favorable towards liberals were brainwashed by their teachers...

February 2, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Why develop personal pattern recognition, professional judgment, or situation sense on your own when you can just Google along? Do we need a new system of education focusing on "domain-specific habits of mind, acquired through education and experience"? Analogues to libel laws focusing on algorithmic outcomes?

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/feb/02/how-youtubes-algorithm-distorts-truth

“Watch time was the priority,” “Everything else was considered a distraction.”

“On YouTube, fiction is outperforming reality,”

‘Leading people down hateful rabbit holes’

The article goes on to explain how an algorithm that accentuated the weird and divisive ended up promoting viewing material more likely to favor Trump.

Of course it could be argued that old time street corner newspaper hawkers "Extra, Extra! Read all about it!" were working with much the same metric.

February 2, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterGaythia Weis

An editorial that, IMO, captures an important element of the linkage between cultural cognition and motivated reasoning that is missed if the focus is on ideological or political orientation, or "values": tribalism as represented in "teams" and the zero sum game of scorched earth blood sport mentality.

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2018/02/02/opinion/trumps-blood-sport-politics.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

"An editorial that, IMO, captures an important element of the linkage between cultural cognition and motivated reasoning that is missed if the focus is on ideological or political orientation, or "values": tribalism as represented in "teams" and the zero sum game of scorched earth blood sport mentality."

It's an interesting article - as a view from the partisan democrat side, it's a viewpoint that ought to be considered seriously.

The main think I noticed was this bit:

Like no other president before him, he has abandoned the Jeffersonian ideal of compromise in favor of the zero-sum game. For him to win, the other side must lose.

Yes, this is deliberate. But one also has to consider what partisan republicans would give as their reasons for it. The issue as perceived by many of the republican grass roots was that the Jeffersonian game was being manipulated. Compromise was always demanded from republicans, but democrats did not compromise themselves. This leads to a steady ratcheting of policy in the democrat direction. The kids Alice and Bob are arguing about how to divide a cake between them. Bob says they should have half each. Alice says she should have all of it. Mother comes in, and tells them "How many times have I told you to compromise? Split the difference. Alice should have three quarters, and Bob one quarter." Bob, of course, angrily responds with "Stuff that! In that case, I want it all!"

The republican base see their representatives losing one policy battle after another by compromising to democrat demands for bipartisanship without any reciprocity. They're fed up of it, and angry. They see the demands for compromise and moderation as a dishonest trap, a means for the Establishment via the media to control the political agenda, by labeling positions they oppose as 'controversial', and demanding compromise and moderation. It's a classic negotiating technique - controlling the agenda, setting the Overton window.

Trump is an experienced business negotiator, and recognises what they doing. He's undercut the entire paradigm by simply rejecting their agenda and presenting his own, without apology or compromise. He rejects the legitimacy of their rules, and simply doesn't care what they say about him. If he's attacked verbally, he attacks back. And it's pretty funny seeing democrats complaining about Trump turning the public debate into a blood sport, given what democrats have been saying about Trump for the past couple of years!

The lesson Trump is trying to teach is that Jeffersonian compromise and civil debate depend on reciprocity. He's not going to compromise on policy until you do. He's not going to stop attacking people in Tweets until you do. He's not going to respect your point of view until you respect his. The tactic of 'demanding compromise' isn't going to work any more. And he's made himself incredibly popular with his base by doing so - the more the media attack him for it, the more the public likes him.

So yes, I agree with the article's observation. Trump has radically changed the game. But you have to take the next step, and understand *why* (from his own point of view) he has done so, and why he has got away with it. Whether or not you agree with the republican perception of the situation, it's the perception you have to deal with.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterNiV

It's an interesting article - as a view from the partisan democrat side, it's a viewpoint that ought to be considered seriously.

It's far from being a viewpoint that is limited to partisan Democrats. It's a view on Trump that is very widely shared among many life-long Republicans as well.

Yes, this is deliberate.

I have been trying to decide, for quite a while, whether anything is really different about the age of Trump, and if there is something different, then what is it. From where I am right now in the process, I don't think that there has been some dramatic change of state, it's mostly a continuation of trends, but at the same time the rate of change has, IMO, increased rapidly.

And I don't think it really has to do with being "deliberate," as I think that the blood sport aspect has been "deliberate" to a large degree for a long time. But perhaps, what is different, is the explicitness of Trump's approach. Maybe a semantic splitting of hairs, but I think that the complete disregard for any deeper concern about moderation, and instead an explicitness about being tribal, without any meaningful consideration of countervailing narratives, is what is, perhaps, not exactly unique, but more explicit with Trump.

But one also has to consider what partisan republicans would give as their reasons for it. The issue as perceived by many of the republican grass roots was that the Jeffersonian game was being manipulated. Compromise was always demanded from republicans, but democrats did not compromise themselves.

There is nothing unique about Pubz having this viewpoint, IMO. It's true of all partisans. Strongly aligned Demz have felt exactly the same way about Pubz. Children have the same kind of polarized perspective in their disputes. Hopefully people grow out of such an egocentric frame on disagreement, but unfortunately many people don't, and it seems the lack of perspective-taking is exacerbated when group identification gets mixed in. Not sure why you think anything about that is need of explilcation, but some things don't change much, I guess.

The lesson Trump is trying to teach is that Jeffersonian compromise and civil debate depend on reciprocity.

It's truly amusing to watch your rationalization of Trump. It's the sort of thing that I would expect from a partisan Pub. It's curious to see why you adopt such a comic book version of his motivations and explanation for his actions. If not a partisan Pub identity, what explains it? What would cause you to see him as not only doing the standard kind of juvenile partisan engagement, but to further elevate his engagement as some kind of mature and deliberate strategist who does what he does to affect a more enlightened form of engagement.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Or to effect a more enlightened form of engagement either.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

"It's far from being a viewpoint that is limited to partisan Democrats. It's a view on Trump that is very widely shared among many life-long Republicans as well."

Indeed. I was agreeing with it too. The difference seems to be what people believe about his reasons for doing it.

"But perhaps, what is different, is the explicitness of Trump's approach. Maybe a semantic splitting of hairs, but I think that the complete disregard for any deeper concern about moderation, and instead an explicitness about being tribal, without any meaningful consideration of countervailing narratives, is what is, perhaps, not exactly unique, but more explicit with Trump."

I agree. The contrast illustrates the efforts that they previously went to to be accommodating.

"There is nothing unique about Pubz having this viewpoint, IMO. It's true of all partisans."

It wasn't true of most Republicans until fairly recently. Trump's popularity is fairly recent.

"Children have the same kind of polarized perspective in their disputes. Hopefully people grow out of such an egocentric frame on disagreement"

It's not about it being "egocentric", or "growing out" of it. It's that they learn it's a dangerous tactic.

Young children very often use the tactic of manipulating social norms like compromise, truthfulness, or trust to their own advantage. It often takes the other kids (and even adults) a while to catch on to the appropriate counter-tactics - largely because kids are brought up to be polite and it takes an effort to overcome that conditioning - but those cheating social norms eventually learn that it has major long-term costs and stop doing it. The democrats are about to learn that lesson.

"Not sure why you think anything about that is need of explilcation, but some things don't change much, I guess."

Because you show no signs of understanding, and every sign of misinterpreting. As you say, some things don't change.

I explain that the reason for Trump's behaviour and popularity is that democrats are seen to have been exploiting social norms of compromise and moderation to their own ends, and your response is to reject that explanation and interpret it as a false view of any partisan faced with political opposition. (And to insultingly imply it is childish and ego-centric.)
You remain in denial that there could be any such issue. And then having substituted your own explanation, you ask me why I'm telling you what you already know.

Well no. I'm not telling you what you already know. I'm telling you what you refuse to believe, and refuse to hear. So be it. The consequences are very predictable. Some kids take a lot longer to grow out of such tactics than others, and take a much harder beating in the process.

"It's truly amusing to watch your rationalization of Trump. It's the sort of thing that I would expect from a partisan Pub. It's curious to see why you adopt such a comic book version of his motivations and explanation for his actions. If not a partisan Pub identity, what explains it?"

It's not so much that I have a bias in favour of Trump, as that I don't have such a distorting bias against him. You don't survive long as a billionaire-level businessman if you're an idiot, or don't know how to negotiate. But over the past year or so, a very broad slice of democrats have shown some distinctly comic-book interpretations for his actions - somewhere on the spectrum from 'Dr Evil' to 'Literally Hitler' - and think their behaviour doing so is perfectly normal and sane.

Democrats have form, here. When it was George W who was president, they called it "Bush Derangement Syndrome". He wasn't stupid, either. Bush, however, was far too nice a guy to do anything about it. But I think in the era of Trump, we're in for some "interesting times" in the coming years.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterNiV

I started thinking that the lying might be a good way to explore my concept of the difference between explicit and "deliberate."

Obviously, politicians have been lying since men were living in caves. I recently watched a segment of the Vietnam documentary and was reminded of the "deliberate" lying by Johnson w/r/t troop numbers and the Gulf of Tonkin. There wasn't anything remotely accidental about that lying.

Now is Trump's lying in some way categorically different? I'm still a bit agnostic, but I think there's a lot of good reason to speculate that actually, it is more explicit (if not more deliberate).

I found this article somewhat instructive:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/i-study-liars-ive-never-seen-one-like-president-trump/2017/12/07/4e529efe-da3f-11e7-a841-2066faf731ef_story.html?utm_term=.e050c8fb68e7

Also, recently, I visited FDR's residence in Hyde Park...the docent there spoke about how among tens of thousands of photos of FDR, there are only two known photos of him in a wheel chair. Is that categorically different than Trump?

I think there's some solid evidence that Trump is a bigger liar, on a meaningful scale, than we've seen before - but to me that isn't really a categorical difference. To me, it's the explicitness of his lying, with a complete sense of immunity from the effects. He, in fact, laid out the thinking himself - that he could shoot someone on 5th Avenue and his supporters would still line up. There is an explicitness in his approach that I think takes the blood sport aspect to a new level.

And Trump has something at his disposal that is, also, IMO categorically different, which is, basically, a completely complicit media outlet - first in Brietbart and more recently, and even more powerfully Fox News. Of course, the argument will be made that it's no different than a long history of media support from the "MSM" (as if the designation of Brietbart and Fox as non-"MSM" is anything other than arbitrary (arbitrary in the sense of subjectively determined)....for other presidents. Perhaps an interesting question, but I'm reasonably comfortable that the level of cross-over between Trump and the pro-Trump media is, at different as least a matter of magnitude, but most probably also different as a matter of kind, given the advent of the technology that enables that type of closer coordination, and the direct and explicit linkage between Trump and Ailes and Bannon.

I also try to figure out whether stuff like the pussy grabbing is really a difference in kind or just a difference in flavor. I'm still somewhat agnostic about that, as well - but I'm leaning towards the former.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

But over the past year or so, a very broad slice of democrats have shown some distinctly comic-book interpretations for his actions

One of these days you'll give up this straw man shit, NiV. I look forward to that day.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Just to be clear, that wasn't remotely to suggest that I think there aren't many on the left who have a comic book concept of Trump, but to respond to you trying to burden me with such a perspective (in kind with the rest of the misinterpretation that ran throughout the rest of that comment).

Such burdening me of views that I don't have make fruitful discussion with you impossible.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

It's not so much that I have a bias in favour of Trump, as that I don't have such a distorting bias against him.

Ok. So arguing that he employs the approach that he employs is to "teach" about Jeffersonian compromise isn't displaying a bias? Sorry, but that's just so absurd, IMO, that again, there's no hope of meaningful exchange.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

I explain that the reason for Trump's behaviour and popularity is that democrats are seen to have been exploiting social norms of compromise and moderation to their own ends, and your response is to reject that explanation and interpret it as a false view of any partisan faced with political opposition.

A complete misreading

You remain in denial that there could be any such issue.

A complete misreading.

I could go on, but won't bother.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

Speaking of blood sport...

I hope that you realize that you have an ethical obligation to root for the Iggles:

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/jan/31/philadelphia-eagles-socially-conscious-woke-team

http://www.espn.com/espn/feature/story/_/page/enterpriseCoalition180126/colin-kaepernick-movement-endures-supporters-more-fragmented-ever

http://www.espn.com/espn/feature/story/_/page/enterpriseCoalition180126/colin-kaepernick-movement-endures-supporters-more-fragmented-ever

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

And whatever you do, don't read this:

https://www.thenation.com/article/the-progressive-case-for-the-new-england-patriots-seriously/

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Joshua,

Saw those, as well as:
https://theundefeated.com/features/irreconcilable-differences-why-the-nfl-players-coalition-split-apart/

On your compromise argument with NiV, I have some data, if that would help. I'm pretty sure I posted it before:

https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/8466/b9707c5dcc9bb00d8556e0dc89f5df45a70d.pdf

https://www.vanderbilt.edu/csdi/miller-stokes/08_MillerStokes_BroockmanSkovron.pdf

I know, they're not about compromise - but it's an interesting proxy. Maybe the Pubz reps should consider compromising with their own constituents, or even just learning about them?

As for rooting tomorrow. Well, I really like LG and Chris Long. But, I've got to root for the pro-Trumpian elitist evil empire, in the hope that it's continued unjust domination of the NFL induces a liberal backlash of epic proportions in November. And, maybe for other reasons as well....

BTW - you do know that Putin once stole one of Kraft's Superbowl rings, right? So, each successive Superbowl win by the Pats makes that old ring a little less valuable. Just our way of stickin' it to the man.

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Joshua,

You'll love this:
https://thepulseofthenation.com/#poll-four

February 3, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

You're right! That's fantastic. Thanks.

For the first one, I have no doubt we could construct a similar exercise for Demz with similar results, but it is certainly beautiful nonetheless. For the question about trusting Putin, it would be fun to add the data on changes in attitudes of Trump supporters to compare their views now with their views 5 or 10 years ago. The shift re Russia more generally wouldn't exactly be parallel across the Pub/Dem barrier, IMO, but there would be a (somewhat less) dramatic hypocritical shift nonetheless re fear-mongering about Russia (I still can't quite get used to people on the left red-baiting ala Greenwald's critique). And imagine what that kind of data organizing could produce if we looked longitudinally at how views on the FBI have shifted! Likewise for their attitudes about Jesus supporting Trump (as we've discussed with trends in views of evangelicals in views on the characteristics of politicians). For the inequality one, I've seen similar takes on the data re views on fairness on taxes.

I did read that undefeated.com article - actually meant to link that rather than the ESPN article twice.

I'm not quite getting the connection between compromise articles and the blood sport editorial (not really interested in the argument with NiV aspect because, IMO, his response was so off the wall I find it uninteresting) so maybe you could spell out how your linking the two?

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

... and also how you're linking the two. Sheece.

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonthan -

Apropos...

https://youtu.be/fcziw7helVg

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

link drop - climate change mitigation communication, for kids:
https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/4/16964414/climate-change-children-book-tantrum-that-saved-the-world-megan-herbert

Joshua,

I'm in particular referring to the who's fault is this lack of compromise part of the argument. While I imagine it would be very difficult to operationalize that directly, the links I posted show what may be a contributor to the lack of compromise - how polarization is happening, and in which directions. There's also this oft-reproduced classic that shows when the large movement started (about 1978):

https://www.brookings.edu/interactives/average-ideology-of-the-house-and-senate-1947-2014/

Combining these - the pubz reps are zooming rightward way more than their constituents, and the dems reps are slightly moving leftward (starting 1992 - 14 years later) while staying to the right of their constituents.

We don't see who's fault is the lack of compromise, but we do see who's fault is the increasing difficulty of compromise, based on ideological difference.

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

Thanks for the explanation.

Interesting. I definitely don't think that "fault" for antipathy and/or tribalism is disproportionately distributed across ideological divisions, but it's an interesting question as to whether there might be disproportionate contributions to a lack of compromise in a polarized context (not because of, IMO, but in association with ideological divisions. I'm reluctant to generalize, but it may not be a complete coincidence that a president who features an unwillingness to compromise as a selling point is pandering to the right wing. I mean yes, he was a Dem for a long time, but there may be a "deliberate" strategy to market and leverage his anti-compromise brand when he decided to put in a cloak of rightwing authoritarianism for the sake of political expediency)

My first guess is that two phenomena are inextricable and proportionate to each other. But there's no particular reason that i can think that they should be. With a tendency towards motivated reasoning, I see hard-wired cognitive and psychological features of humans as primarily causal. With lack of willingness to compromise, I see more of a volitional or preferential influence. I have to think about that more.

Meanwhile, this is long, but if you take time to listen to all or part, I'd be curious to hear your take. I think you might find it interesting.

And there's an interesting crossover, as part of the discussion in the clip relates to an internal lefties debate about whether or not an uncompromising positioning is the way to go. Somehow, I don't think that righties would be as likely to have such a debate. Personally, I think that I think (enough hedging there?) that any approach that focuses on oppositional positioning rather than shared interests is doomed to failure. I imagine that Trump would get a good laugh out of someone promoting my approach.


https://soundcloud.com/user-434246752/ep20-david-roberts

I'm going to be chewing on it for a couple of days. It brings up a whole grabbag of mixed thoughts for me.

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Maybe it is all just a framing thing after all:

https://psmag.com/news/the-grand-old-party-longs-for-the-good-old-days

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/320426549

So, maybe we should just say "Remember the good old days when a 90% tax bracket kept the robber barons at bay (which was lowered to 70% by demz!), and pubz like Bob Dole and demz like Pat Moynihan used to meet in smokey DC back rooms over beers and compromise on all sorts of things like welfare and defense spending?".

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Joshua,

Congrats! Hope you survive the celebration.

February 4, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Thanks Jonathan. Not living in Philly anymore significantly increases my chances of surviving the celebration (now living in enemy territory of Hudson Valley in NY).

Great game. Hard to believe that Patriots didn't get that TD and two-point conversion to win in OT. Over 500 yds,. passing and loses? Only one consequential defensive play all game? Bizarre.

I heard on Philly sports talk radio this morning from a fan that "This victory is a miracle from God." That might be stretching it a bit, but I do feel good good the city. Would have been an absolute morgue had they lost.

February 5, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

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