Tag: Trust

Can We Trust Anyone?

 

Over a lifetime, the question of trust comes up almost from the moment we are born. Trust is implicit in honorable relationships, in our putting our lives in the hands of others, in taking risks in partnership with others, in simply trying out new things. Unless we came from highly dysfunctional families, our parents tended to us in ways that helped us feel safe in the world. They did their best to feed us and clothe us, to make sure we picked up our rooms and wiped off our muddy feet before we came into the house. We followed their direction because we trusted them to care for us, and they in turn learned to trust us.

In the larger world when we were small children, we were told to look both ways before we crossed the street; the drivers couldn’t be trusted to see our miniature bodies as we stepped into their paths. We were told to honor our teachers who were entrusted to educate us and socialize us with our peers; we learned to trust them when they helped us with our homework or relied on us to complete a classroom chore.

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An internal FBI memo warns there could be armed protests in all 50 state capital cities, including Washington, DC and could happen before, during or after Inauguration Day. Given our cynicism about “unnamed sources” the lack of any back-up information to this leak, how are we, as citizens, supposed to respond? Preview Open

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Do you remember those times when you were willing to give certain people the benefit of the doubt? When you might have questions about what they’ve said or done, but a number of factors would contribute to your putting your doubt aside and taking them at their word? Although raised to be skeptical, even cynical, […]

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Quote of the Day: Dishonorable People

 

“One of the common failings among honorable people is a failure to appreciate how thoroughly dishonorable some other people can be, and how dangerous it is to trust them.” — Thomas Sowell

This statement by Thomas Sowell is almost a truism to many of us; anyone who studies the political scene might roll his or her eyes in response. Can we trust anyone on the political Left?

But if we move beyond the obvious, we realize that our trust of some people that we thought we could trust must, at the very least, be viewed with skepticism. As sincere as Dr. Fauci, Dr. Brix, medical authorities, and model makers may be, we must now question the validity of their statements, challenge the way they interpret the data, and how they communicate their views to the public. Those of us who like to give education, authority, experience their due now must ask, “Are all those credentials enough for us to trust anyone?”

Engaging the Enemy

 

Van is a spitfire. She is a dedicated conservative and she loves this country. She left Vietnam with her family right after the war. She is an entrepreneur, having started several businesses, and now in her senior years runs a nail business (does fingers and toes, as my husband would say) from her home, and does my nails. I’ve known her for more than ten years, so we know each other pretty well. The other day she stunned me with a story of bravery and determination. And it wasn’t about leaving Vietnam.

Van has mostly senior customers from all walks of lives, an assortment of religions or no-religions, and many cultures, ethnicities, and races. I’m going to share her story as she told it to me the other day, in her inimitable style:

So I’m talking to my customer about many things, and I asked her why she calls herself an African-American. Why? She is an American! She isn’t from Africa and she doesn’t have family from Africa, so why doesn’t she just call herself an American? I don’t call myself a Vietnamese-American!

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To all the dermatologists who may be reading this post, please don’t take offense. In fact, I hope you’ll weigh in. Here’s the thing. I know a lot about skin care and the dangers of melanoma. I’m a fair-haired, light-skinned woman, who had some sunburns in my day, but stopped sun-seeking a long time ago. […]

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Do you know anyone who isn’t feeling cynical about politics, politicians and pundits? I was thinking about whom I actually trust in the political sphere, and the list is depressingly short. What does it mean to trust? For a place to start the Cambridge Dictionary defines trust: Preview Open

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The Harris-Klein Debate and Benefit of the Doubt

 

Jacob Falkovich, of PutANumOnIt fame, published a post-mortem on the Harris-Klein debate over IQ and race in Quillette. Not just the Quillette article, but the blog post inspiring it, The Context is the Conflict, are both worth a read. As Falkovich sees it, the Harris-Klein debate was merely one example of conflicting forms of political reasoning, pitting those who see political opponents as mistaken against those who see political opposition as conflict, and also pitting cognitive decoupling against contextualizing. To summarize the story the way Falkovich sees it, Sam Harris tells Ezra Klein, “Ezra, it’s dishonest of you to be so concerned with the social implications of the data that you discount what the data has to say,” and Klein shoots right back, “Sam, it’s dishonest of you to be so concerned with what the data allegedly says that you discount its social implications,” that is, whose interest is served by treating the data in question as reputable, and whose interests are harmed.

Both Klein and Harris have a point. We on the right are fairly open in our mistrust of “scientism,” after all. We know that, no matter how much data might seem to speak for itself, the scientific validity of data can’t be entirely separated from the nonscientific interests of the ones gathering, analyzing, publishing, and popularizing the data. Who funded a study, we wonder? Would funding have biased it? Was one study widely reported on while studies contradicting it were not; reflecting media bias? We aren’t fools for asking these questions, merely fools if we take them to their paranoid extreme: at some point, data must matter, even though it’s collected and interpreted by biased humans. Nonetheless, we suspect, probably rightly, that even good science can’t be wholly divorced from its social implications once it’s fodder for political dispute.

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There are many things that form the mountains in our lives; grief, worry, fear, desolation, disease, pain and anger are just a few of these things. Sometimes we stand at the base of the mountain before us and feel the anguish of defeat, because the mountain stands in the way of our purpose. Some would […]

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Way back when President Ronald Reagan was dealing with the Soviet Union, trying to get them to break down the barriers of communism, he made the statement, “Trust, but verify.” At the time, I was dubious not just about the collapse of the U.S.S.R., but also of the President’s statement. Trust isn’t something to be […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America groan as Aetna announces it will pull out of Virginia and Iowa’s last insurer is leaving most of the state for the individual marketplace. They’re stunned as more Republicans tell pollsters they trust the government to do the right thing more than Democrats do. And they react as an MSNBC contributor declares that anyone who doesn’t rely on government is elitist.

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One of my Facebook interlocutors’ favourite talking points is that Trump is so bad that “we can’t give him the benefit of the doubt”. I was unclear on what that actually meant, in practice. I mean, what did this interlocutor suggest those disappointed by the election results should actually do about it? Preview Open

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One of the striking features of this election has been the talk about the integrity of the process and the integrity of our institutions. Trump keeps making the case that system is “rigged,” that the forces of the political class have conspired and are continuing to conspire to stay in power and consolidate that power […]

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Simple Life

 

wedding ringsI am a monogamous married man. I am not a romantic person, but I do love my wife dearly. I enjoy a simple life with her.

I do not have an ex. No ex-wife, no ex-in-laws, no alimony, no child support, no lawyer. My wife is the mother of my children, which also simplifies their lives. Our kids never had to keep a personal scheduler to know which home to go to after school. They never had to do that blended family thing.

I don’t have any former friends who are now friends of an ex. I never changed church because it was too uncomfortable to attend the church of my ex.

Can Hillary Do Anything Authentically? #DeleteYourBotsHillary

 

It’s Friday, and since that’s another day of the week, it means a further example of Hillary’s deception and deceit. The accumulated never-ending pile of poop emojis fills the massive trust and honesty deficit canyon known as Clinton, Inc. as exhibited in yesterday’s incredible video. Even after President Obama endorses the first female criminally investigated presidential nominee, her campaign continues to fray at its tattered and torn duplicitous edges.

If you spend anytime online beyond the friendly confines of Ricochet you are aware there is a yuge pro-Hillary support group who bounce from site to site and regurgitate similar spew with such vitriolic precision that it even astounds those who dwell under bridges. And yet, surprise … it now turns out that most of her soylent green “fans” are in fact not made of people, but bits and bytes. Yes, Hillary’s campaign is spending its contributors hard earned donations on creating robots to saturate Algore’s invention.

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If there’s one thing I’ve neglected in my perpetually nose-to-the-grindstone life, it’s building alliances. It’s meeting and getting to know others outside my present work associations, cultivating relationships over shared interests, and laying the foundations to jointly pursue worthy goals. Isolation is easy, for those of us with a demanding vocation and/or a restless disposition […]

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