Posted tagged ‘media’

Biased

August 12, 2017

I posted this on my other blog, Both Sides Now, but I’m posting it here because it’s relevant to the purpose of both blogs.   It’s also think it’s a good post and gives me an opportunity to promote my new blog to readers of Older Eyes.  If you are one of the few who already subscribe to both, I apologize.

biasI like to begin my day with a cup of coffee at my side and my tablet in front of me, seeing what is going on in the world from the various news outlets. I have searched for years for a source of unbiased news (a phrase that should be a truism but turns out to be an oxymoron) but have finally settled on reading biased news from a variety of sources, then drawing my own conclusion. Over in the blogosphere or on social media, it is worse. Opinions masquerading as facts may not win the day but they dominate it. It is as if we are pre-programmed to be biased, which we are. The culprit is not some brain-hacker out of The Matrix but a fundamental characteristic of our species known as Confirmation Bias. Our Creator (or Evolution, you choose) has endowed us with a very strong tendency to sort through the array of information available to us at any instant and choose that which supports our currenttiger2 opinions, thus strengthening our belief. Some scientists explain that for our ancestors, dealing with simpler (but more critical) situations (like Is that a Sabre-Toothed Tiger and is it likely to eat me?), reaching a quick decision in the face of sensory overload was a matter of life or death. If this is the case, then Confirmation Bias is strongly linked to our Flight or Fight Response, becoming strongest when the situation seems threatening.

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Diversity and God

March 16, 2014

park sunriseI usually post on something at least lightly related to spirituality on Sundays but I awoke today with little to say and little time to say it.  So I Googled Americans and God, and found a remarkable assortment of headlines.  Here are a few of them:

More Than 9 in 10 Americans Continue to Believe in Godwww.gallup.com, 2011

74% of U.S. adults believe in God, 72% believe in miraclesHarris Interactive Poll, 2013

Half of Americans Say God Plays a Role in Super Bowl WinnerHuffington Post

38% of Americans say that they have done something because God told them towww.yougov.com
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Dumb, Dumber, Dumbest

March 5, 2013

UnKim Jong Un is the thirty year old dictator of North Korea, best known for continuing the development of nuclear weapons with which he threatens to destroy South Korea and the United States, conducting public executions, maintaining prison camps for political prisoners, and starving his people while the elite live lavishly.  Dennis Rodman is a former basketball playerrodman who won five NBA Championships, was Defensive Player of the Year twice, and a member of the NBA Hall of Fame.  He is known as perhaps the greatest rebounder ever to play the game, as well as for his bizarre hair styles, tattoos and body piercing.  He publicized his first autobiography by showing up in wedding dress and his second by appearing in a coffin.  He is a certified headcase and publicity whore.  Last week, Rodman was in North Korea with the staff of Vice Magazine, which is filming a special for HBO.  Rodman and the Vice crew, the first Americans to meet Kim Jong Un, were guests at an exhibition game featuring members of the Harlem Globetrotters and a sumptuous banquet that Rodman described as top tier.  I wonder how the 3.5 million people who’ve starved to death in North Korea since 1995 would feel about that.   Returning home, Rodman said that Kim Jong Un is a great leader.  I love him, Rodman said.   Dumb. (more…)