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BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance

punkfolkrocker 16 Jan 21 - 11:55 AM
punkfolkrocker 16 Jan 21 - 11:52 AM
Donuel 16 Jan 21 - 10:58 AM
Mrrzy 16 Jan 21 - 10:07 AM
Donuel 16 Jan 21 - 09:56 AM
punkfolkrocker 14 Jan 21 - 12:41 PM
Donuel 14 Jan 21 - 12:19 PM
leeneia 13 Jan 21 - 01:22 PM
Donuel 13 Jan 21 - 07:35 AM
Donuel 13 Jan 21 - 06:42 AM
Donuel 12 Jan 21 - 04:42 PM
punkfolkrocker 12 Jan 21 - 12:30 PM
punkfolkrocker 12 Jan 21 - 12:26 PM
Donuel 12 Jan 21 - 11:04 AM
Donuel 12 Jan 21 - 10:46 AM
robomatic 11 Jan 21 - 08:06 PM
Donuel 11 Jan 21 - 02:23 PM
Bill D 11 Jan 21 - 11:49 AM
punkfolkrocker 11 Jan 21 - 11:35 AM
Charmion 11 Jan 21 - 11:33 AM
Bill D 11 Jan 21 - 11:16 AM
Dave the Gnome 11 Jan 21 - 06:59 AM
robomatic 10 Jan 21 - 08:54 PM
Steve Shaw 10 Jan 21 - 07:33 PM
Bill D 10 Jan 21 - 07:19 PM
Bill D 10 Jan 21 - 07:17 PM
Bill D 10 Jan 21 - 07:06 PM
Mrrzy 10 Jan 21 - 05:28 PM
Donuel 10 Jan 21 - 01:53 PM
Donuel 10 Jan 21 - 08:08 AM
Steve Shaw 10 Jan 21 - 06:14 AM
robomatic 09 Jan 21 - 09:58 PM
Steve Shaw 09 Jan 21 - 09:04 PM
Rain Dog 09 Jan 21 - 07:16 PM
robomatic 09 Jan 21 - 12:02 PM
Thompson 09 Jan 21 - 11:55 AM
robomatic 08 Jan 21 - 04:59 PM
Donuel 08 Jan 21 - 03:21 PM
Bill D 08 Jan 21 - 03:05 PM
robomatic 08 Jan 21 - 02:44 PM
Donuel 08 Jan 21 - 02:27 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 21 - 01:42 PM
Donuel 08 Jan 21 - 01:31 PM
robomatic 08 Jan 21 - 12:48 PM
Bill D 08 Jan 21 - 12:27 PM
Lighter 08 Jan 21 - 12:01 PM
Donuel 08 Jan 21 - 11:39 AM
punkfolkrocker 08 Jan 21 - 10:08 AM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 21 - 09:23 AM
Thompson 08 Jan 21 - 08:20 AM
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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 16 Jan 21 - 11:55 AM

oops.. "sensible rest of society"...


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 16 Jan 21 - 11:52 AM

In the context of this thread and it's relevance to the real world,
I'm regaining an appreciation of the term "Half wit"...

Social media is becoming dominated by basically well educated articulate people, the + half of their wit;

but who have been convinced they are a superior elite of better informed experts than scientists and higher academics.

Their egotistical dogmatic belief in conspiracy theories is the - half of their wit.

These people are easily convinced and manipulated conformists,
who have been deeply programmed with an arrogant conviction
that it is the rest of sensible society who are the brainwashed sheeples..,!!!???


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 16 Jan 21 - 10:58 AM

Chinese translations have their glitches

The most practical way to stop radicalizing the religious and supremacist right is to STOP ALGORHYMICLY REINFORCING USERS OF FACEBOOK and youtube. It creates an echo chamber that people drown in.

The nazi right have had to go to a internet platform telegraph, the same platform used by ISSIS.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 Jan 21 - 10:07 AM

Hippies? Really?


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 16 Jan 21 - 09:56 AM

Rap calls it
camoflage

There are pharmaceutical solutions for the lack of empathy.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 14 Jan 21 - 12:41 PM

We can safely presume any mercenaries being hired as agent provocateurs,
have both antifa and maga costumes in their wardrobe of disguises...

.. though it's entertaining fun and games guessing who is hiring their services...????????????????


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 14 Jan 21 - 12:19 PM

In an effort to further destabilize the US and engrandize their own countries Both Russia and China are publishing that Antifa,'hippies' and BLM stormed the US capitol.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: leeneia
Date: 13 Jan 21 - 01:22 PM

Donuel, thanks for those insights from angelaha. There are some excellent points there.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 13 Jan 21 - 07:35 AM

Aha I found my reading glasses.
No one wants to be deprogramed. People know whats its like to be tricked by a lie, starting with Santa Claus. Change should come with definitions people can more easily understand. Deprogramed is a poor choice of words, although it is true.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 13 Jan 21 - 06:42 AM

Democratsunderstanding th cultlike indoctrinationof trumps bse has asked how do we DEPROGRAM THEM.

Now the repubs object to deprograming llke in the book 1984


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jan 21 - 04:42 PM

fits, were averaging 3,500 deaths everyday.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 Jan 21 - 12:30 PM

oops.. wrong thread..

but.. does highlight lack of good reason in UK govt thinking...


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 Jan 21 - 12:26 PM

So, boris now seems to be competing to kill at least as many British civilians than even h1tler ever did...???

Well done, tories..

Persistently striving to make Britain world beaters...!!!

2020 saw most excess deaths since World War Two


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jan 21 - 11:04 AM

portion

Practice critical thinking. People often believe in conspiracy theories because of “lazy thinking,” says Nadia Brashier, a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University who studies why people fall for fake news and misinformation. “We need to be nudged to consider whether the claims in front of us are accurate. So, slowing down and asking yourself, ‘Is this information biased or unlikely to be true,’ can be really helpful.”

Although many conspiracy-theory believers consider themselves to be critical thinkers, closely examining their evidence might help them see otherwise, Douglas adds. For example, does all the conspiracy-theory-related material come from one type of source, while non-conspiracy-theory information comes from different sources? That can be a clue that something is off.

AD

Change your perspective. Try thinking about a situation that triggers negative feelings in a way that will change its emotional impact. For example, parents might point out to a child who’s struggling with staying at home for an extended period of time that isolation is often part of an adventure; in fact, astronauts train for it. That new perspective can help reframe the experience into something more positive.

This approach is called cognitive reappraisal, says Nicole Giuliani, an assistant professor at the University of Oregon who has expertise in health behaviors, emotions and self-regulation. Research suggests that those who use the technique are more likely to have closer relationships, fewer depression symptoms and greater life satisfaction. It can also diffuse the strong emotions linked with conspiracy theories.

Giuliani has been using cognitive reappraisal often, she says, as she juggles working full time from home with two young kids. Rather than focusing on the difficulties, “I’m trying to remember that they aren’t little for very long, and we’ve had a lot more time together than we would have otherwise,” she says. “I do find that it’s helping me snuggle them closer while we read ‘Jamberry’ for what feels like the millionth time, and that can’t be bad.”

AD
Connect — and consult. Feeling isolated and disconnected — emotions plenty of people have struggled with during the pandemic — are primary reasons people fall for conspiracy theories, Rathus says.

Make an effort to remain connected, and remember that social distancing doesn’t have to mean social isolation. Watch the same movie as a friend, even if you’re in different places, or schedule a Zoom book club meeting. Make plans to meet outdoors — at a park, for example.

If you do become intrigued by a conspiracy theory, talk to others before you decide it’s valid, as TeGrotenhuis’s client did. “Think through all the wise and sound people you know and trust,” TeGrotenhuis says. “Think about your peers and mentors. Are they following this conspiracy theory? Check it out and see if they’re thinking along those lines as well.”

AD

Try guided imagery. Visualizing positive outcomes can help clamp down on the intense emotions that might make you more vulnerable to harmful conspiracy theories. Picture yourself in a happier time — at the beach during a vacation or visiting a relative you haven’t seen in months, Rathus suggests. Or imagine what you’ll do once it’s safe to resume old routines.

Then, challenge your brain to counter all the “what ifs.” Replace, “What if the worst happens?” with something such as, “What if we have a safe, effective vaccine, and life returns to normal?”

“Our brains are wired to pick up threat,” Rathus says. “There’s no incentive to get stuck on what could go well, because evolutionarily, that kept us safe. But in times like this, when there’s so much threat to pick up, it bombards us quite painfully.”

AD

Do one task a day that makes you feel in control. It can be big or small: searching for a new job or washing that days-old tower of dishes. “Keeping in charge of your space and feeling more in control of your life makes you less prone to feeling like other people are pulling the strings,” says Nathaniel Herr, an associate professor of psychology at American University.

Working on a project, such as growing a window herb garden or decluttering your house, can also help decrease feelings of powerlessness. Rathus refers to it as building mastery. Doing something every day that helps us feel more competent and in control of our lives is “an incredible lift to our emotions.”

Take good care of yourself. Eat well, exercise every day, get enough sleep — you’ve heard it before. But “sometimes, it’s the seemingly simple things that are really hard,” Herr says, such as taking medications as prescribed and keeping an eye on alcohol consumption. Just as not getting enough sleep can make us overwhelmed and snappy the next day, it can also leave us with spiraling thoughts. “Trying to keep your equilibrium on that level is a good way of protecting yourself from feeling strong emotions,” Herr says.

AD

Accept the circumstances. “There’s not a lot we can control about the pandemic or wildfires or other major stressors these days, so it can be freeing to stop trying to fight these negative feelings and just accept them,” Giuliani says. Calming strategies such as deep breathing and meditation can help. Or consider acceptance and commitment therapy, she suggests — a therapeutic approach to learning to make peace with your circumstances.

Angela Haupt is a writer and editor based in the District. Follow her on Twitter @angelaha


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jan 21 - 10:46 AM

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/why-uncertain-times-make-us-susceptible-to-conspiracy-theories--and-how-to-pro


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 08:06 PM

Thanks Charmion. That was a big help! Better knowledge of portyankis AND puttees! Now Kipling will make more sense!


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 02:23 PM

pfr I will second your nomination to the NYSFTTS. The licensing is up to you.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 11:49 AM

pfr.. No family recipes for 'long pig'. Many years ago, Max did videos. You'd have to ask him. ;>)


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 11:35 AM

The photo also looks like a poster for a movie
about a nice friendly couple running a rural folksie hotel
where guests mysteriously disappear..

The hotel kitchen serves the tastiest meat pies in the county...

We want to see this film, why aint mudcat in the movie business ...!!!???


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Charmion
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 11:33 AM

Robo, portyanki are not like puttees, except in that they are flat pieces of cloth.

Oblong in shape, portyanki are wrapped around the bare feet and ankles, and are worn inside the soldier's boots and trousers. They work best with the felt-lined knee-high boots that are the Russian equivalent of mukluks. Puttees are long strips of cotton webbing that are wound around the leg on top of the trousers, socks and the top two inches of the British ammo boot. Infantry soldiers wind them from the ankle up to the knee, and gunners and troopers wind from the knee down to the ankle, so they don't come undone from friction against stirrup leathers.

After the invention of knitting machines and the arrival on the Russian market of affordable knitted socks, the true purpose of portyanki -- apart from saving the state money -- was as an initiation experience for recruits. Learning to wrap their feet correctly was one of the first things taught to Soviet soldiers, and the Russian army abandoned them only very recently. Puttees were adapted from clothing worn by tribal fighters in India during the 18th and 19th centuries, and were kept in wear until the 1960s because they provided easily adjustable support to soldiers' legs, they were very distinctively military, and they were cheap.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 11:16 AM

I was unaware that I was in such elite company.. but I have so many ancestors who inhabited various English manors that I'd not know where to claim residence. (Some of them, unfortunately, did not follow the example of the Vicar of Bray)


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 11 Jan 21 - 06:59 AM

Lovely picture, Bill. You would be at home as lord of the manor in any English stately home in that :-) Glad to see that you are keeping Edward V11 company by leaving the bottom button of the waistcoat undone :-D


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 08:54 PM

Mrrzy. I pedal corrected....in athletic socks.

I understand that Russian soldiers wore not socks, but portyanki throughout WWII. These were fabric foot-wraps. Cotton in summer, flannel in winter. The official word to shift to socks came relatively recent according to The New York Times.

Apparently they are similar to what the British call puttees.

I don't know how far back socks go, actually. I've got a recording of George Bernard Shaw stating that he had his socks made left and right, and I ran into that recently in Alaska, but I forget just where.

The town I used to live in in Massachusetts had an underwear factory, and I still think I have some t-shirts made in Needham. Apparently that was so the unwed mothers could have jobs!


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 07:33 PM

Great pic, Bill.

I still have the suit, the shoes and the underpants I got married in 44 years ago. Unfortunately, due to 44 years' good living, there's no way I can get any of them on now. Well, maybe the shoes, but even they look doubtful. And just a bit mildewy ...:-(


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 07:19 PM

Maybe... it shows the file name, but slow loading.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 07:17 PM

Ok folks.. here's me with my wife, when that suit was 'only' about 30 years old.
at a friend's wedding


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 07:06 PM

re:socks....

I spent most of my life in jobs which required shoes.. and often work boots... with good socks, to be both safe and comfortable. In the few years when I might have worn sandals, my feet had no protective callouses. I now, in my 'declining' years, have several pair of sandals and 3 pair of shorts.
It is interesting how people differ so much in their sartorial display. I feel gaudy in a shirt with any red or yellow in it. My favorites, both short and long-sleeved are black & while checked. My 'party' shirt is a green & gray checked thing my wife gave me several years ago. I also have a blue-gray shirt with a small wold embroidered on it. My ONLY suit is a brown corduroy with matching vest I bought for my wedding 40 years ago. I have worn it to a couple of weddings and a few other events since, including my son's wedding 2½ years ago! (I think I always wore the same leaf-green with white outlining tie).

   I think I'll put a link to me in it on my Dropbox or Google drive.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Mrrzy
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 05:28 PM

Robomatic who bought the bike?

Hahaha. Peddled vs Pedaled. Never mind. It has been a long week.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 01:53 PM

The first ammndment has always had lilits. When radio arrived the government got involved, same with TV. The Internet revolution is in its wild west age and has proven toxic in the wrong hands. This technology is too advanced for humans? The next one will be a doozy if unregulaed. Th first ammendment is not as sancrosanct as we mightthink.


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Subject: Is this how to restore reason ?
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 08:08 AM

I have no idea what it must be like to be sock blocked.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Jan 21 - 06:14 AM

One of the reasons I decided to eschew socks for ever was the dreaded phenomenon of sock-slip. I always hated those grooves that normal socks left around the bottom on my calves, so used to wear those loose-top ones. After a short while they generally ended up scrunched under my foot inside my shoe with an unbesocked bare heel to show for it. I found this to be an intensely crippling experience. I regard socks, along with the boob apron, to be among the worst sartorial inventions ever.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 09 Jan 21 - 09:58 PM

OK when I was younger and even more irritating than I remain at present, my parents told me to put my shoes and socks on. I gleefully returned to them with my feet in my shoes, and my socks pressed onto them as far as they'd go.
In more than one way I am lucky to be alive!


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jan 21 - 09:04 PM

I can't bear socks. I wear them for weddings and funerals only, and even then I whip them off in the car afterwards as soon as is decently possible. For thirty years I have had just the one pair of black shoes and they are still in very good condition. All my other footwear is sandals, and I never wear footwear of any kind in the house. So if you knocked on my door and saw me, you'd think I was in a state of honest poverty. Trouble is, I also wear shorts all the time and all my shirts are short-sleeve and extremely colourful, mainly of the Hawaiian type. I wonder if that makes me non-povera...


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Rain Dog
Date: 09 Jan 21 - 07:16 PM

Well I think it would be better to be wearing shoes without socks rather than traipsing around the west of Ireland barefoot.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 09 Jan 21 - 12:02 PM

Thompson:

Great quote!
I peddled a bicycle through the Gaeltacht in the 80s with a kid who was learning Irish Gaelic and we would stop and he'd interpret the signs. Are you fluent?


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Thompson
Date: 09 Jan 21 - 11:55 AM

Irish proverb: Is fearr a bheith coslom ná cosnoctaithe - it is better to be barefoot than in shoes with no socks, ie better honest poverty than a pretence at wealth.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 04:59 PM

According to multiple sources on the internet, that quote pre-dates Mark Twain considerably. And the quote is not socks but shoes. Shoes is what people go halfway around the world in, socks optional.

Mark Twain: "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 03:21 PM

True, and a lie is a swift WMD
Trumps election lies are years old but Mark Twain was also right
"A lie is halfway around the world before the truth gets its socks on".


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 03:05 PM

The word truth can be used several ways, just as 'folk'. But it often involves an equivocation when just tossed about. When capitalized and put in quotes, it is usually meant as dressed up word for 'fact'.

If 'facts' are known in some matter, 'truth' means honestly and accurately acknowledging facts.
A lot of what people like to wave about as truth is merely some subjective opinion on some abstraction. It gets kinda slippery.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 02:44 PM

Your essay on correcting essay tests reminded me of our far simpler method of evaluating job interviewees. On our best days several of us employed persons ran identical questions to the subjects, then scored them personally, then met and decided if we agreed with each other and if not, why not. I think we based our method on how we saw Olympics judges score performance athletics that couldn't be timed. Not a good model now that I rethink about it.

I meant to *explain the SAT
in my previous posting. For those of you not in USA "SAT" is an abbreviation for what used to be "Scholastic Aptitude Test". They were everpresent when I was a high school student. They were given at the end of American elementary education so about when the average student was 17 or 18 and were supposed to indicate how well prepared one was for post-secondary education, but not paid for by the state. Possibly subsidized, but I don't think totally. There were two separate sections to be done, one that verbal and another that was mathematical. Predominantly multiple choice. Possibly there were essays required for the verbal.

It might be a good idea to have some set of standard requirements that can be posed as an exam and must be passed to go into public service, but that would certainly indicate a society prejudice against mental infirmity or personality defects. I doubt that can work in the U.S. because it departs from the 'everyman' nature of our Democracy. Also, I believe the French have a quite elaborate system of schooling their public officials and how has that worked out? (Seriously, I'm asking, how has that worked out? I sure don't know).


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 02:27 PM

Bill, I consider Truth fundamental while nebulus. I do not relegate truth to an adjective status.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 01:42 PM

In my experience (of marking tens of thousands of 'A' Level biology essays, and of assessing the marking standards of examiners in my teams), yes it's grand to be able to demonstrate your skilful martialling of relevant facts, expressing them clearly and in context and putting everything together into a persuasive and well-balanced and well-structured whole. The problem is how to fairly assess those efforts. We would typically mark an essay out of 20. Each tick represented a well-made point which was relevant and in context. But our marking scheme for each question (ironed out for the paper over a whole two days of meetings), which typically covered two sides of A4, contained upwards of forty or fifty potential marking points. Three of the questions selected by the candidate typically had a part A/part B structure requiring long answers, and the other two were of the "Discuss the theories on the origin of life" type. In addition, the essay had to be balanced across that scheme (you couldn't score all 20 points by leaving out a whole area of discussion that you hadn't thought relevant/hadn't revised/had forgotten about). There was the question of overall quality of the answer (which we assessed somewhat subjectively according to several criteria, such as writing in clear and concise English, diagram accuracy, the avoidance of irrelevancies and blatant errors and giving the essay a cohesive structure), to which we allocated a maximum of three "quality" marks out of the 20. No marks were allocated for neatness, nice handwriting or effort, though we were allowed to dock a mark for sheer bloody unreadability, whilst retaining the brief that we somehow still had to process the damn thing...

Now each of the poor souls who did the marking had to carry all those caveats in their heads, as well as effectively "learning" the marking scheme - and have that sorted for all nine essay questions on the paper (the candidate had to choose five to answer). In a typical summer exam, I would personally mark about four or five hundred scripts and each member of the team about half that number. Almost all of us were working teachers, doing the marking in the evening and at weekends in term time, working to an extremely tight deadline. Essay setting is a grand idea, but, as you can see, there is another side to that coin. We have to be fair to candidates, whose careers or university entrance depends on our getting this right. Setting tasks that only superhumans could assess accurately doesn't serve them at all well.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 01:31 PM

How about a required Presidential SAT as a candidate?


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: robomatic
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 12:48 PM

I think there are times when you avoid essay answers. As Steve has mentioned the fair posing, evaluation, and grading of them requires considerable energy and is subject to multiple tiers of correction. And what if the question is technical and the answer is graded on grammar?

My father recalled a math teacher who downmarked you if you didn't put a period at the end of an equation.

Meanwhile multiple choice can be good or bad depending on the nature of the subject and the quality of the test preparer. In school they varied with the teacher. On the SAT* I thought they were pretty good at getting your level of knowledge although it hurt to feel rushed. In the working world one runs into them in proving that you have familiarity with various tasks and licensing criteria. The official ones have been good, the trades ones have been ludicrously easy, because the people who put the tests together were probably not paid to make a good test and the test itself was mainly to show that you showed up for the presentation. I have been surprised on occasion.

As to the larger question of reason and renaissance, the recognition of reason is somewhat elusive. The actual Renaissance may have been a result of plague tearing apart a population that was educated to dark ages standards. Your village started dying, so you prayed, put poultices on the sores, burned a witch or a Jew or two, and possibly went to self-flagellation. I'll never forget a short story I read: "The Plague Comes to Bergamo".

At some point, a critical number of people start saying: "Enough is enough is enough."


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 12:27 PM

Truth is not a road.. it's a feature of a good road.

A sane political system is one way reason can be inserted into education. If dozens of variations of education continue, narrow views of 'truth' will always confuse things. Of course, in order to establish common ways to conduct education, political sanity needs to prevail... but that seems to need common education....

Do I detect a circular flaw in progress?


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Lighter
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 12:01 PM

Multiple-choice exams can be brutal - if the distinctions among the choices are subtle enough.

In my experience, however, a common method is to make one of the four choices intentionally ludicrous, and the other three distinct enough so that someone with only a vague notion of what's required has a good chance of guessing the answer.

But not even the hardest multiple-choice test (which, by the way, even some instructors call "multiple guess," as though that's the proper term) demands the organizational skills and clarity of thought required by essay questions.


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 11:39 AM

Truth, education... what other hiways are there to reason?


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 10:08 AM

Exams are really no more than a test of how young people may cope under pressure and stress...

In that respect it shows how prepared they are for survival and progress in the real adult world..

Also "cheating, and getting away with it".. which is also a respected adult business skill...


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 09:23 AM

For many years I was an examiner with an 'A' level board, rising eventually to the dizzy rank of team leader of a group of assistant examiners. My specialism was marking and moderating the marking of biology essay papers. It is the hardest damn thing on earth. Right up to the time that the results were announced we were in the back room checking each other's marking, and even secretly checking the marking of our own chief examiners. After the results we had to re-mark appealed results too. I saw it all. Many an injustice must have crept through, and I have sympathy with exam boards backing away from essays and embracing both structured and multiple-choice questions. It may sound like a drop in standards, but it can be done and it's fairer all round. People who can get an extensive marking scheme into their heads and objectively mark the infinite variety of long essays to an acceptable standard are like hens' teeth. If we thought we were getting to within five percentage points of the correct mark for a paper with five essay questions we thought we were doing well. Examinations are unfair as it is, so stripping away at least one layer of that unfairness is creditable (in m'humble).


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Subject: RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance
From: Thompson
Date: 08 Jan 21 - 08:20 AM

During my brief exposure to American education I was astonished by tests of knowledge relying on multiple-choice questions rather than essays, and by languages taught (by people who didn't speak them) from tourist phrasebooks. Later, watching from the distance, I watched Phonics (teach children to read words as they sound, before revealing to them the horrid truth that words aren't actually spelled like that…)


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