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Thoughts on political correctness - Nothing to See Here — LiveJournal

Feb. 13th, 2007

09:43 am - Thoughts on political correctness

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From:urox
Date:February 13th, 2007 08:18 pm (UTC)
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I think the problem comes from the varied usage of "articulate". The most common meaning is that one is able to enunciate. Not much praise there at all.

However, the meaning which I think *most* people are associating with Obama is that he is extremely effective with getting his ideas across and communicating sincereness with them as well.

I read an article in the SF Gate about Obama's response mentioning Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton also as articulate. But in my memory Jesse Jackson, he always seemed very religious (probably his history of being a minister ;) ) and when someone comes at me sounding religious rather than logical, it just doesn't have as much strength getting me to accept their ideas.

Obama doesn't hide behind god for his views.
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From:mavjop
Date:February 13th, 2007 10:15 pm (UTC)
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Interesting. I think of the typical/common meaning of the word as being:
      adj 1: expressing yourself easily or characterized by clear
             expressive language; "articulate speech"; "an
             articulate orator"; "articulate beings" [ant: {inarticulate}]

... but I do note that you are correct that it can certainly mean "able to pronounce words", "able to enunciate".

I think that being able to enunciate particularly well certainly can be a compliment ("You have extremely good enunciation."), however is doesn't go so far as my usual usage of the word (and interpretation of what others mean when they use the word) ... of being an exceptionally good orator or exceptionally good at getting your ideas across (doesn't have to be public speaking [oration]; can be 1-to-1).

I definitely don't have to agree with the politics or ideas of someone to think they're a good orator or good at making their point.

One can be perfectly logical while accepting certain things on faith. Mathematics is about as logical as you can get, and lemmas are used all the times in proofs. There is very little difference between a stated matter of faith and a lemma in a logical/philosophical discussion. The one big difference is you may go back and attempt to prove a lemma, whereas you likely won't do so with the matter of faith.

I've known some very intelligent, very logical, and very articulate religious people.

Interesting point though. I had not really thought about the alternative definitions of "articulate".
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From:urox
Date:February 13th, 2007 10:30 pm (UTC)
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"I've known some very intelligent, very logical, and very articulate religious people."

I never said that religious people weren't. I am saying that I am skeptical of religious beliefs as the basis of arguments since you can't argue with a religion.
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From:mavjop
Date:February 13th, 2007 10:40 pm (UTC)
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Oh, totally agree. If you don't share the beliefs of the person making an argument and if those beliefs are the foundation (lemmas) of the argument, then of course you don't have to be swayed by their argument.

That said, you can still listen to them and note have respect for the fact that they explained very well (i.e. being articulate) what their reasoning was for getting from point A (lemmas) to point Z (conclusion), and that their logic was sound, given A, even if you don't accept A as a starting point, and thus do not accept their conclusion, Z.

What I'm trying to do is separate "clarity of expression" along with use of logical argument, and "ability to sway me to their way of thinking". The former is being articulate. The latter may require the former (or may rely on charisma), but is by no means an absolutely necessary product of the latter.
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From:urox
Date:February 13th, 2007 10:56 pm (UTC)
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But I *don't* want to listen to someone where I disagree with the premise or lemma. That's the foundation of a straw man argument.
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From:mavjop
Date:February 13th, 2007 11:54 pm (UTC)
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That is an acceptable attitude. Your not listening doesn't change the fact that their argument may be articulate and/or logical, though.
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From:anemone
Date:February 14th, 2007 11:12 pm (UTC)
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You can't argue with non-religious axioms either. We all have axioms.
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