Category Archives: Opening Minds

Where does wisdom live?

David Brooks paints a simple picture of what he proposes as the core philosophical difference between Democrats and Republicans. The parties look in different places  for answers to policy questions.  Do you look to government, or do you look for … Continue reading

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Defending Government

I recently heard a commentary about the struggle between Republicans and Democrats on Vermont Public Radio that seemed counter intuitive, if not totally mistaken. In “Battle of the Titans”,  Bill Schubart argues that the battle in Washington: is not over … Continue reading

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Being Wrong — Overcoming Mistakes Ain’t Easy (part 2)

*note — this is a sequel to an earlier post on Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error by Kathryn Schulz. To pick up where we left off, our problem with “being wrong” is twofold: (1) we are often … Continue reading

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Being Wrong — and Knowing It! (Part 1)

Kathryn Schulz has written an entertaining book (Being Wrong) about a problem that refuses to go away,  which we should be thankful for!  That is, we owe a lot to our capacity to draw accurate conclusions from a few observations … Continue reading

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Resistance to Climate Change Research?

It is far less difficult in the world of research to let the facts stand than in the political world where too often political advantage determines whether results are dismissed or embraced.  Yes, Thomas Kuhn taught us that researchers will … Continue reading

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What Does Civil Discourse Look Like?

President Obama’s  call for “a more civil and honest political discourse” is a challenge we should accept. What does it mean?  What are we called to do? Ann Friedman in the American Prospect ponders a similar question and notes: However, … Continue reading

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Vaccine Requirements — Parental Rights vs. Public Safety

I added an Addendum to this post. Last week a public hearing was held on HB416 which would provide an exemption from required vaccinations for reason of “conscientious belief”.  Such exemptions are not uncommon. A parent or legal guardian objects … Continue reading

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