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Comment: Re:What exactly is the middle ground? (Score 1) 300

by don_bear_wilkinson (#33818158) Attached to: Top Reason for Facebook Unfriending Is Too Many Useless Posts

Thank you for expressing this so articulately.

You are, of course, right about our cultural norm.

I had written out a long response, but I've decided to not waste so much of 'our' time. It's a complex, philosophical topic and we will not conquer it here.

Suffice to say, that I hold the opinion that not only are our cultural norms fairly absurd in many cases, but I think what you suggest leans a bit far towards the 'permission' end of the 'you can ask for permission or you can ask for forgiveness' spectrum for what I think would promote a well-adjusted and emotionally developed society. :)

Comment: Re:What exactly is the middle ground? (Score 1) 300

by don_bear_wilkinson (#33817230) Attached to: Top Reason for Facebook Unfriending Is Too Many Useless Posts

Unfortunately, for those who are ill-equipped or disinclined (by disposition) to debate, an attempt to engage in rational and or critical analysis and discussion can be treated as if it were offensive. People who don't 'get' debate and or who do very poorly at it (against those who have the faculties and abilities) often get pretty steamed when you (perhaps) inadvertently make it clear how baseless and or ill-informed their positions are. :)

Comment: Re:Just when you think... (Score 1) 531

by don_bear_wilkinson (#33365250) Attached to: Toyota Adds External Speakers To Warn Pedestrians

Is it? I don't think you can say that empirically.

I happen to think I would be perfectly content to have a nice quiet neighborhood wherein some of the very few sounds would include the sound of a distracted texter or inattentive daydreamer yelping in pain as they bounce to the tarmac.

Putting aside the considerations for blind persons, which is a topic I have not resolved in my own mind so I have no opinion, I am SICK AND TIRED of dumbing down everything in existence to the lowest common denominator. We do too much to protect that tiny fraction of people who would otherwise deservedly suffer the wrath of natural selection -or- fulfill a statistical probability. Shit happens. Don't turn my world into a freakin' idiot-proof padded room to save a *few* lives. We have too many people as it is. I'll take days and days of quiet for the infinitesimal chance of one person having a bad day. Even if it's me.

Sheesh.

Comment: Re:Of course it can... (Score 1) 282

by don_bear_wilkinson (#32470650) Attached to: Does the Internet Make Humanity Smarter Or Dumber?

I disagree that "nearly everybody LEARNS" from having fallen for one hoax. There are plenty of people who might come to recognize one kind of deception, only to fall prey to another. It's healthy skepticism combined with the faculty for critical thinking that reduces that probability. While I can agree that the internet is a good source of information or fact that a person can avail themselves of for debunking things, and that a person can develop their thinking skills by using internet resources, there is something more fundamental about a society-wide disinterest in doing such that I am on about.

I was not trying to beat you up about anything. I was making a point about how learning happens. Just being exposed to knowledge is not enough for learning, especially deeper levels of learning. If you can't appreciate that, then's there not much more to be said here.

As to the rest of your response, which amounts to undeserved personal attack and or threat, you do yourself a disservice. You seem to condone social pressure or violence against people who voice views and opinions that make you feel an unpleasant emotion.

That whole notion of 'you're only saying that because you're hiding behind your computer' thing? That's kind of funny. In a sad way. You're trotting out a tired, half-assed taunt that is intended to suggest that I am a coward. You have no idea who I am or how I conduct myself.

As for 'rejection', I don't fear being rejected by people who can't have a rational discussion, including disagreement and critical analysis, such that their statements or opinions might come to question or disproof, without acting as you have done here.

As for 'physical insult' part, wow. So, would you like to punch me in the face because you are feeling ouchy inside? Impressive.

For the record; it's true I don't have a lot of friends. The friends I do have are of a caliber that suits my sensibilities. They don't tend to get all pissy when we disagree or critique each others' ideas or positions. They can hold their own in conversations and discussions without slinging arrows.

Comment: Re:Neither (Score 1) 282

by don_bear_wilkinson (#32470316) Attached to: Does the Internet Make Humanity Smarter Or Dumber?

With my spotty memory faculties, I also see/use the 'net as a source of information that I might otherwise retain in my head.

I, too, am constantly humbled by the real genius out there. And then, 2 minutes later, I am lifted so high by the idiocy out there. :)

I also think that the 'net can lead to intellectual laziness. People who are already predisposed to not caring about deeper levels of knowledge and understanding, of the kind that lead to the ability to extrapolate from what they already know to new ideas for example, will continue to acquire and regurgitate mere information, leaving real thought and exploration behind.

Comment: Re:Intelligence is tweaked not obtained. (Score 1) 282

by don_bear_wilkinson (#32470282) Attached to: Does the Internet Make Humanity Smarter Or Dumber?

If I give you a nail gun and wood and tell you to build a house but instead you discover that shooting at cans with the nail gun and burning the wood in a bonfire is more entertaining than shelter ... who's fault is that?

I just had to say; I really liked this illustration. I've met people who would shoot the cans and have a fire. The real crime in our modern world? That we prop these people up and help them survive - subverting natural selection. ;-\

Comment: Re:Of course it can... (Score 3, Insightful) 282

by don_bear_wilkinson (#32470250) Attached to: Does the Internet Make Humanity Smarter Or Dumber?

"The net teaches us to be very good at discerning bullshit from true facts"

No, the 'net doesn't teach us anything. We teach ourselves, as and if we choose to expose ourselves to knowledge and choose to incorporate it into how we experience and process our existence.

More specifically, while "the 'Net" can be used to debunk falsehoods, it doesn't *teach* discernment. That still involves a capacity for critical thought and an interest in not being easily susceptible to bullshit. Just because the 'Net offers information and or facts, does not mean people will magically be shown how to good use of them, when they might. You still need a person to think, even a little, on their own.

You can lead a horse to drink but he can still be a gullible ignoramus.

Comment: Re:I will punish comcast.... (Score 1) 128

by don_bear_wilkinson (#31883774) Attached to: Comcast Customers Urged To Opt-Out of Settlement

I will punish comcast by never signing up for their service.

If only that were possible where I live.

It is always possible to no sign up for Comcast. Simply don't do it. Of course, you may be too addicted or otherwise obsessed with LOLCATZ or whatever to *want* to do without what Comcast gives you. :)

I've got all the money I'll ever need if I die by 4 o'clock. -- Henny Youngman

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