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Comment by eamon on Pretending to be Wise · 2009-02-22T05:26:31.000Z · LW · GW

Q: But then how can we avoid the (related but distinct) pseudo-rationalist behavior of signaling your unbiased impartiality by falsely claiming that the current balance of evidence is neutral?

1a. If it is possible to be neutral, state that you have no opinion, and leave it at that. 1b. If it is not possible to neutral, state your bias, as completely as is possible.

Consider what motivates "false claims" of neutrality.

It is essentially a hedge against the risk/cost of bias.

Why is such a hedge necessary? It is an artifact of a "nuanced" or counter balanced situation. (The rope, essentially.)

What is pseudo-rationalist behavior, and why is it undesirable? This is the first I've heard the term, but I am assuming that refers to that noxious brand of fakery, which purports to be reason, when in fact, it is not.

To apply all this to the Israel-Palestinian conflict. The neutral position of "human rights" is inferior to the nuanced position of "political desire for reconciliation", which is actually a status quo position. This can be determined simply by the relative sums of money towards each effort. The nuanced position presumes not to take sides on the big picture. The human rights approach would have to 1) take one side, for the people and 2) be empowered enough to compete with alternate dynamics present in the region.

A: I assert that an "authentically wise" position, would assert radical non-neutrality.

By analogy, radical non-neutrality, would be to assert a position, drawn from first principles, that automatically requires concessions from both sides to accommodate the viewpoint. (The alternative is both sides would assert that part be non-involved.)

Iff, the United States wanted to adopt this viewpoint, (Which is unlikely, since it's budget for FY 2008 for Israel was 2.42B), it would have to assert some viewpoint, which undermines both or supports both in some sort of fashion. Something like, free health care, education and retirement for everyone in the region, and ask Palestinian supported nations to contribute, and then have the fund distribute the resources on an equal level to individuals.

If the straw man that resolving the Israel/Palestine conflict were valid, we would have adopted a grass roots strategy in support of Palestine long ago, it is the obvious tipping point.

Solomon cutting the baby in half.