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February 12, 2012


Luis Enrique

"When what matters is getting a cheer from our own side rather than persuading others, standards of factual accuracy decline."

Actually I think standards of accuracy slip when it comes to scoring points fo your own team, when to trying to persuade others too. Campaigners and activists are always at it. I think it happens when people are convinced of their own righteousness.


Given that your own beef around QE scores a point (bank lending is the wrong measure) but obscures an important point (QE in the proposed volumes isn't providing the needed stimulus - and so alternatives should be explored) I'm not sure that your proposed definition of "factual accuracy" is as useful as you claim.

Account Deleted

Luis makes a good point. When you are opposed by someone who does not share your views at all, you are obliged (if you want to convince, rather than just posture) to tackle him either by highlighting the contradictions in his own philosophy or by reference to some neutral domain that is not in dispute (like maths).

When you are opposed by someone on the "same side", the tendency is to question their bona fides, suggest they don't know what they're talking about (because you obviously do), or just ignore them as a distraction from the notional party line.

I think a large part of the problem of the modern Left is nostalgia for a party line.

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