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Thread: How much Conventional Wisdom were you taught? page

  1. #1
    wiltondeportes's Avatar
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    How much Conventional Wisdom were you taught?

    "Conventional Wisdom" (now referred to as CW) is a phrase we use to describe wrong knowledge taught in our society, especially relating to recent knowledge (which could be the past 10-50 years, but usually does not refer to anything much older). This goes for politics, philosophies, lifestyle, and nutrition. Nutrition is only a part!

    I wonder which groups might be more affected by this CW. Urban areas are more liberal. The media is mostly liberal. Teachers are liberal more often than not. It seems to me those hit the hardest by CW will be those who grow up without much parental or mentor support, especially if they live in an urban area. Am I right? The rest of their information gathering will be the purest form of CW.

    On the flipside, the least affected by CW would be those growing up in the country with solid parents, a good group of friends, good activities, and solid values. Possibly even homeschooled. Their information gathering is most likely to include experience-based information (such working till your hands bleed versus whining when you don't get your way), passed down values from a pre-cultural Marxism era (baby boomer and older parents/grandparents teaching you how to be a man/woman etc), and a true sense of an independent mind (the modern left LOVES to claim they're different, but they're not).
    Last edited by wiltondeportes; 10-26-2012 at 11:55 PM.

  2. #2
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    I'm uncomfortable by the way you've characterized these groups. Binaries are generally false.

    You may not have even known you set up the binary - what is the "flip side" of rural = solid parents/good friends/good activities/solid values? Do you really want to make the argument that urban = slacker parents/bad friends/bad or no activities/no values? That seems awfully sheltered!

    I do think there are links between liberalism and sciencism (different than science) since liberalism tends to base judgements of truth from what is understood to be confirmable, replicable research. Most practicing scientists hedge their assertions a lot - "this data seems to show a possible correlation between..." and "our findings imply we need to do more about X to understand why this correlation may exist." We do get to confirmation and replication eventually... Unfortunately, media publicizing the findings generally quickly move to "scientists found that X causes Y" and science crusaders perpetuate the misunderstanding. Media happens in both urban and rural places.

    I think the links between urban and conventional wisdom are much more tenuous. For example, many of us rural types (I'm a Kansas farmgirl, btw) were raised on 4-H and taught the epitome of CW through those institutions. Rural churches also tend to be pretty conformist. I think rural schools are also likely to emphasize shop/home ec more than urban schools due to demand and state politics/resource allotments. My grandmother and many other rural women of her time went to the local state university in home ec and was taught CW there. For me, CW has been passed down matriarchally. Homeschooling is also often done primarily by the mother.

    Since, statistically, rural folk tend to be less educated by less of a variety of people, they may not have developed a critical consciousness about the way they were raised. Urbanites tend to be more individualized. However, I would say rural people also tend to be more libertarian - in the "no one can tell me I'm wrong" sense. The binary conservative/rural liberal/urban breaks down very quickly.

  3. #3
    wiltondeportes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarasue624 View Post
    I'm uncomfortable by the way you've characterized these groups. Binaries are generally false.

    You may not have even known you set up the binary - what is the "flip side" of rural = solid parents/good friends/good activities/solid values? Do you really want to make the argument that urban = slacker parents/bad friends/bad or no activities/no values? That seems awfully sheltered!

    I do think there are links between liberalism and sciencism (different than science) since liberalism tends to base judgements of truth from what is understood to be confirmable, replicable research. Most practicing scientists hedge their assertions a lot - "this data seems to show a possible correlation between..." and "our findings imply we need to do more about X to understand why this correlation may exist." We do get to confirmation and replication eventually... Unfortunately, media publicizing the findings generally quickly move to "scientists found that X causes Y" and science crusaders perpetuate the misunderstanding. Media happens in both urban and rural places.

    I think the links between urban and conventional wisdom are much more tenuous. For example, many of us rural types (I'm a Kansas farmgirl, btw) were raised on 4-H and taught the epitome of CW through those institutions. Rural churches also tend to be pretty conformist. I think rural schools are also likely to emphasize shop/home ec more than urban schools due to demand and state politics/resource allotments. My grandmother and many other rural women of her time went to the local state university in home ec and was taught CW there. For me, CW has been passed down matriarchally. Homeschooling is also often done primarily by the mother.

    Since, statistically, rural folk tend to be less educated by less of a variety of people, they may not have developed a critical consciousness about the way they were raised. Urbanites tend to be more individualized. However, I would say rural people also tend to be more libertarian - in the "no one can tell me I'm wrong" sense. The binary conservative/rural liberal/urban breaks down very quickly.
    Quit whining about stereotypes. They generally exist because they are true. The goal is to pinpoint trends here.

    I think you also misunderstood the point I was making. "Liberal" refers to the modern political left, not the classical definition. I think the modern left is the epitome of CW. They are the crowd following idiots.

    And science vs liberals? That's a more difficult argument to make. On one hand, the modern left doesn't understand science or basic economics, but they are non-religious. On the other hand, the modern right make themselves appear to be religious blow-hards, but they are generally more right on topics (especially economics). The party or ideology that has the better parts of both are libertarians, and I feel many align with these beliefs without knowing due to our "two-party" system.

    Your next paragraphs are muddy.

    PS- Your political correctness makes you not want to acknowledge that stereotypes have truth to them, and this is a perfect example of conventional wisdom taking hold.
    Last edited by wiltondeportes; 10-26-2012 at 11:37 PM.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by CelloIsLove View Post
    I grew up in an urban setting (mostly-moved around a lot) with one conservative and one liberal parent. My mom taught me more CW than my dad.

    In school we were taught in health class that leftover pizza made a good breakfast. In history, we were taught a very one-sided northern viewpoint in the civil war (it wasn't until I got to college that I learned there was a lot more to the story and that it wasn't about slavery). In psychology, we were never taught that diet had an effect on behavior, only that the people affected by mental issues could only be helped through prescription drugs. This is especially troubling because rates of depression are rising in teens. They have no idea their lifestyles can have a major impact on their mental health, so they either don't seek help, or they do and become over-medicated robots.

    I was taught in church that being gay was an unforgivable sin. I think one teacher went to far as to say that all non-christians go to Hell, including muslims and jews. I, like many (yes, more than you think) modern Christians love and support the rights of gay people, and support all forms of religion. But that's not CW.

    Of course I was taught by my mom to be smart about my diet. Eat low-fat and all that. She warned me repeatedly about my cholesterol as a teenager since my dad had cholesterol problems. I never had my cholesterol tested, but I'd wager at that time it was low, and not a healthy low.

    When I entered middle school, I had perfect skin. My sister had mild acne (very mild) as a teenager, but my mom had moderate/severe acne when she was young, so she was very adamant we would follow skincare routines. Up until then, I would just rinse my face with water in the shower and I had no problems. If I didn't wash my face at night with more than water, my sister and my mom would yell at me. This was the beginning of my skin problems. Skin isn't meant to be ravaged with cleansers and toners and treatments and whatever else. It's skin. It can take care of itself. I still suffer mild breakouts and lots of scarring from that. I've always been kind of bitter over that. I feel like they forced my hand and made me screw myself over. I suffered a lot of emotional and self-confidence issues because of my skin when I was a teenager, all because of what they thought was best for me.
    Ah church. The original conventional wisdom.

  5. #5
    sarasue624's Avatar
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    Yeah. Muddy was the point.

    And your question was a leading one after all. I was hoping you were actually interested in the topic rather than looking for proof of preconceived notions.

  6. #6
    wiltondeportes's Avatar
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    Of course this scenario sort of says subtly that the urban area is poor while the country area is rich. If you flip the script: the stereotype of the country folks are hillbillies without much common sense and occasionally they do meth. The stereotype of the city folk is still CW! Look at rich people in Hollywood, in New York City, in your nearest city. They suck down CW by the barrel. Those hypothetical country hillbillies may suck down their own version of conventional wisdom, but it's the 1930's version, which is better in my opinion.

  7. #7
    wiltondeportes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarasue624 View Post
    Yeah. Muddy was the point.

    And your question was a leading one after all. I was hoping you were actually interested in the topic rather than looking for proof of preconceived notions.
    Well I am interested in the topic. How can I form a reply to something that says "this, but well that.....but well this.....but well that..." I'm saying you should come up with a point and make your writing more organized.

  8. #8
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    Most of my diet knowledge has come from stuff like magazines and diet books.

    I don't think the whole "low fat/high carb" vs "high fat/low carb" is a political agenda. It's something that works for a lot of people. But at heart, you have to eat something alternative to crap foods. If anything, CW is fueled by food manufacturers, squarely in the conservative camp.

    http://maggiesfeast.wordpress.com/
    Check out my blog. Hope to share lots of great recipes and ideas!

  9. #9
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    CW teaches me that there is a social structure that works, justice, democracy and a place for me in it all if I play by the rules.


    All the above is BS IME and you would describe me as liberal as I'm pretty left of centre politically, though down a differernt side line that most poeple considr freak town
    You know all those pictures of Adam and Eve where they have belly button? Think about it..................... take as long as you need........................

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    OK, could people stop having arguments about political generalisations?

    It's a given that, in any area, the dominant ideology will have more people believing Conventional Wisdom. Why? People are typically lemmings. If your area is largely Liberal, there'll be Liberals who reached their conclusions on their own, Conservatives who reached their conclusions on their own and Liberals who decided to follow the "popular" choice just because it's popular. Ditto for Conservative areas: some people believe it, some don't, some people are copying mommy and daddy or their friends. If we say (random numbers!) 60% of people are undecided and 40% are educated, the educated side with the most people (30% Liberal vs 10% Conservative, for example) will absorb up to 5/6 of those "undecided" people. And OF COURSE the "lemming" people will believe more Conventional Wisdom. Were they raised in Nazi Germany, these people would likely be Nazis. Were they raised in Noth Korea, they'd likely be avid supporters of the Kim-Jongs' Communist regime. And, in a mostly "X" area, they will probably be "X". Hence, in a society which promotes Conventional Wisdom, the lemmings will be in favour of it, giving you a coincidental correlation: in some areas, it will look like Liberals are more CW, in some it will look like Conservatives are, in some Baptists, in some atheists...

    As far as rural areas go: if raised in a rural area, you're more likely to be:
    -physically active and more in tune with your body
    -eating local and seasonal produce
    -watching less TV
    All this will lead to less obsession with "correct" eating and more of a focus on eating what gives you energy, strength and makes you feel happy and good in yourself.
    I once lived in a rather Liberal-minded rural area (admittedly in Spain), where people who had farmer/hunter parents were healthier and ate less grain than your "wannabe city kids" who watched more TV, ate more doughnuts and were generally lazier and more focused on being "skinny".

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