Cool-headed deliberation is the job, after all.

by Gina Schouten on October 5, 2018

I’ve been reading that the deliberations over Kavanaugh’s appointment in light of Blasey Ford’s allegations against him are firing up voters on the right in the sense that those voters, like Kavanaugh, find the mere investigation to be crazy, a moral outrage, incomprehensible. I’ve never felt so strongly like I’m living in a completely different reality than those who disagree with me politically. This makes me want to say why I think what I think as plainly as I can, because however wrong it might be, I’m almost certain it isn’t crazy or immoral or incomprehensible. Before the testimony, I thought only that further inquiry was in order. Now, in light of Kavanaugh’s testimony, and independent of Blasey Ford’s, I think Kavanaugh has shown himself to be unfit for appointment to the Supreme Court. Here’s why.

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Hoaxes in general

by Daniel on October 5, 2018

I don’t know much about “grievance studies”, but I do know quite a lot about fraud, having written a book on the subject and spent two years researching it (and now three months more researching some additional bits for the US edition, out in 2019). So just a further observation after Henry’s post on the subject – one thing that I think is underappreciated in a variety of contexts is that the susceptibility of a system to intentional deceit is not by any means a good indicator of the underlying health of that system. In fact, I would even go so far as to say that the equilibrium level of fraud is determined entirely separately from the equilibrium level of quality and output, and that therefore the ease with which X can be faked is irrelevant to your assessment of whether there are severe problems with X.
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The REF: A Modest (and very Tentative) Proposal

by Miriam Ronzoni on October 5, 2018

As many readers may already know, UK Universities will undergo their next round of research evaluation in 2021. This is called REF (Research Excellence Framework); has recently been joined by its teaching equivalent, the TEF; and is seen by many UK academics as part of a general managerialist, bureaucratic trend in UK academia which many deplore, and about which other CT members have already written many interest things.

This post is neither about that general trend, nor about the problems or virtues one might identify within the rules of the current REF compared to past versions. It is, instead, about throwing out there a very simple idea on how to engage in some minimal effort, minimum confrontation resistance to the whole thing. [click to continue…]