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But neither of those is an example of rational thinking.

I didn't believe that H had nukes because a workable WMD program is almost crippingly expensive, even for a functional economy, and after GW I Country I certainly didn't have a functional economy.

Also, B clearly was a lying windbag too. But that was a suggestive data point, not proof.

Scientists believe critical thinking brings convergence because beliefs are independently checked and verified and supported by abstract reasoning. Every so often this goes horribly wrong, but the system works - within its limits - at least as well as any other kind of intellectual attempt to understand the world.

Religious people and paranoid exploding-earth nutters are swayed almost entirely by their emotions and don't do logic at all. 'I feel it' isn't much of an explanation for anything, which is why you can't argue with it rationally. Meanwhile the paranoid nutters enjoy drama and fear for the sake of it.

The broad split is between people who pay attention to facts outside themselves and people who only pay attention to their feelings. The Pope seems to be one of the latter - he'd rather defend an irrational faith with irrational acts than engage with historical reality.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Fri Jan 23rd, 2009 at 08:28:23 PM EST
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