I have moral obligation to hate everything MH types(actually kidding here... MH is one of my favorite posters here, hahaha), but I routinely pie his posts. doesn't mean I agree with much at all of what he says, but he's pretty funny.
Does it really matter when ultimately it's going to come down to the people you see as authoritative and the people I see as authoritative aren't necessarily the same people?
You can claim your decision process is better than mine, and I can claim the same, and in the end it'll all come down to the same result.
If you want an extended version of "my dad can beat up your dad" feel free. It'll ultimately just be a rehash of what we've already talked about, though.
Yes, it matters. It matters a great deal. It's not really important if I see someone as an authority; recognized authorities, at least in science, are based on their experience and work in the field and not on gut feelings on meeting the person.
In your very post, you highlight that people you respect are those that " Maybe it's because you've demonstrated knowledge on a subject. Maybe it's because people whom I respect respect you." This is, in some ways, the basis of how we develop experts in fields. However, it'd be foolish of me to assume that I know enough about every subject to know if someone is demonstrating adequate knowledge on it, so luckily, there is a system of sorts to help evaluate that. Peer review.
Because I acknowledge my viewpoint, experiences, and acquintances are heavily shaped both by my world view and my place in life, I acknowledge I can not definitively claim to be an expert in a whole many things, and I also can not claim to have many friends that are an expert in a great many things. I remain critical of claims, and read studies with an attempt to find flaws in methods and analysis, as I think most everything deserves a rigorous personal review, as well, but ultimately I acknowledge that I only know so much Thus, I sometimes lean on the expertise of others to form my opinions, after careful consideration of their writings and rationale.
If instead, I treat every published author I've never met, or that my advisor has never met, as being someone that is irrelevant to forming a personal opinion, I would get nowhere in the world, and would be stuck with only my personal experiences, viewpoint, and biases.
I've seen you debate, Phil, and it's pretty common to see you deny the authority of someone who's cited as an expert on something who's in disagreement with your opinion. And it's not their qualifications that matter in those spots. It's their conclusions.
Let's be real. I could go out and find a hundred online articles supporting corporal punishment. It wouldn't matter to you or anyone else in this thread. You probably wouldn't even read them (maybe quote a section and disagree so it looks like you read all of it; that's pretty common practice here).
You can accuse me and 'my generation' of being the only ones that do that, but in reality pretty much everyone does, including the ones who claim to be completely open minded.
Bottom Line: What I've said all along, you gotta have something more than an internet link for me to value your opinion. I listen to people I know and respect, and those people generally aren't found on a message board.
Do you realize the difference between an online article and an article published by an established journal? Are you aware of the peer review process? Do you care to learn about it, if not?
I try to avoid being an ass these days, although sometimes I fail. To be honest, its something I didn't think about. Its been many years since my wife had to take BC pills, so I haven't thought about them in a while. Once again, my apologies to Cat.
Fwiw, I don't believe that politicians should be deciding what should and shouldn't be available over the counter under any circumstances.
It did seem out of recent character for you to be making light of medical conditions, but I can see how you wouldn't know.
I agree re: politicians. The thing is, because of certain moral codes, a lot of people feel that they shouldn't have to participate in an insurance system that provides coverage for things they morally disagree with, as you know. While it's create it's own issues, this is partly why single payer would be nice: would remove the issue of having to provide / receive insurance for something you morally oppose. if you don't want it, don't get it.