No, you don’t have a right to your Opinion.

Via on Jun 5, 2012

Quote of the Day: Isaac Asimov.

“I have a right to my Opinion (re Climate Change, say) no matter what the Facts say.”

~ Many Fellow Americans

~

Truthiness is tearing apart our country, and I don’t mean the argument over who came up with the word…

It used to be, everyone was entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts. But that’s not the case anymore. Facts matter not at all. Perception is everything. It’s certainty. People love the President [Bush, at the time] because he’s certain of his choices as a leader, even if the facts that back him up don’t seem to exist. It’s the fact that he’s certain that is very appealing to a certain section of the country. I really feel a dichotomy in the American populace. What is important? What you want to be true, or what is true?…

Truthiness is ‘What I say is right, and [nothing] anyone else says could possibly be true.’ It’s not only that I feel it to be true, but that I feel it to be true. There’s not only an emotional quality, but there’s a selfish quality.

~ Stephen Colbert

~

Remember when Obama was called elitist (by Rick Santorum) for suggesting that it was a good thing to try and make higher education accessible to all Americans?

Remember, well, just about everything Sarah Palin’s ever said?

Opinions may be interesting. They may be loud, and eloquent. But that doesn’t make them valid, necessarily. The truth is a quiet thing, sometimes, but it’s worth listening to nevertheless:

About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | facebook.com/elephantjournal | twitter.com/elephantjournal | facebook.com/waylonhlewis | twitter.com/waylonlewis | Google+ For more: publisherelephantjournalcom

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10 Responses to “No, you don’t have a right to your Opinion.”

  1. MRC says:

    suggested reading: "The Age of American Unreason" by Susan Jacoby.

  2. Mamaste says:

    Just intro's on FB to: Culture, Enlightened & WOW of the Day.
    ~Mamaste

  3. oz_ says:

    Yes, Republicans demonstrate a lot of ignorance and denial. For that matter, so do Democrats, and to the same degree. Funny – you wouldn't know that from this posting.

    21st century American politics – a study in selection bias.

  4. Jenny says:

    WOW! This is called independent journalism?
    Let me just say – the "facts" have not been proven. Climate Change is still just a theory but we're all supposed to believe very well paid scientists to say what they are being paid to try to prove (even though the "facts" don't add up) without questioning it… Is that me being "Anti-intellectual", because I question why the proof doesn't make sense? I've done my own research. I know I shouldn't and I should just believe what scientists (people who obviously know so much more than me so I should just lap up every word) say, but shock and horror – I actually looked at the charts and "evidence" they were claiming and noticed many things that did not add up. I know… it's so wrong of me to think for myself – and be like the obviously ignorant Americans who don't believe it either… but heck… I am actually not going along with "what's cool to believe in at the time" and thinking for a change! but you're right… it's so ignorant of me to think that my own independent thoughts are worth something – after all – scientists know everything!

    • guest says:

      well, gravity is just a theory Jenny. And scientists are not paid (most of them) to prove something. Scientist all over the world are coming to the same result. And if you ever have been to an academic meeting, you'd know that there is no conspiracy. First of all, science tries to test hypothesis (not prove or disprove, test. If your hypothesis stands up to all tests and hasn't been falsified, it'll be a theory.Science rarely calls anything a fact. That's how people get confused, a scientific theory is not the same as a every day theory) and secondly, scientists are always out to disprove each others studies.
      there is no "proof", so I'm not sure what you are not believing. There are tons of small studies that all support the same theory (it's called bigger picture) No credible scientist so far has come to the opposite result.
      If you say you've done your own research, I assume google'd "climate change". Make sure you evaluate the sources you are using (and what sources they are using..for example Fox News is not really journalism. and many pages can be traced back to one conspiracy theory page) If you really wanted to "evaluate" scientific results, go look up the original articles. This is helpful because journalists get it wrong a lot or omit facts. Compare the original results and their methods. look up who funded their research.
      Most likely, your research, if carried out objectively and with good sources, will come to the result that everything right now suggests climate change is real and at least partially caused by humans.
      Last but not least, no..scientists don't know everything. And they are the first to acknowledge. I've never seen so many insecure people, a lot of them very bright. So no, your independent thought it worth thinking about it, but you need to be careful with your sources.

      sorry, long comment. good luck!

  5. Mark Ledbetter says:

    Personally I don't see much difference between Dems and Reps on the issue of devotion to convenient 'facts'. But, as Oz and Jenny point out, you sure wouldn't know it from this article. If someone says one party is ignorant, you can bet he is a true believer in the other party. No question about this guy's party, is there?

    (Yeah yeah, I know, I'm using a masculine pronoun. And I agree it's a minor crime. But using unnatural artifices in writing is, IMO, a greater crime. A nice flow works a lot better for me than unreproachable PCness.)

  6. guest says:

    yes, everyone is still entitled to their own opinion, just not their own fact. And they are not entitled to never hear they are wrong or feel insulted.
    I would love to work in the US for a while but after all I am reading right now, I am worried. I think I'll sit this one out.

  7. shibumimanagementcanada says:

    Ah – post-modernism. Everyone is right. There are no standards, principles, shared values that guide us (i.e. everyone). What we have is a hive without commonality – a sea of lemmings each of whom seeks his and her own ocean to throw themselves into. Woe betide the teacher who wades into this morass – for – what do they know? This e-age phenomenon makes history as a discipline utterly worthless, and workplace "lessons learned" sort of a scrap book of "My Last Trip To Europe." "How interesting," one says, and moves on. The "Sage on the Mountaintop" is assumed to be a must-have condiment for one's favourite pasta dish.

  8. Hegenate says:

    Perhaps my ignorance may be just as good as your knowledge in the context of approaching something with a fresh perspective. I don't think ignorance is a problem- perhaps arrogant ignorance that pretends to be knowledge is a problem. Then again, arrogant knowledge isn't very useful in general…

  9. [...] And, here’s some more facts, re: Romney’s track record, for those of us who want more than truthiness: [...]

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