The Inconsistency Of Winning
This article by Jon Miltimore caught my eye while preparing for the radio show today. In it, Miltimore relates a tweet by actor Tim Robbins eviscerating Democrats who threatened Matt Taibbi for reporting on the Twitter Files.
One Virginia lawmaker allegedly sought criminal prosecution against Taibbi who was one of several journalists given access to Twitter's records. Once published, the reports led many to conclude an effort by the federal government was trying to censor information on social media.
While that may or may not be true, I see the problem as something else. It seems to me there was a day that when someone uncovered corruption and misdeeds of government or industry, (think Watergate or the Pentagon Papers) those who brought forth the information were nearly all hailed by the news media as heroic in bringing forth truth and enlightenment.
Now, it seems it's only important as to what the accusations are, and who is being accused. Is the news media even making any effort now to find the leaker of the Supreme Court abortion ruling? The New York Times won a Pulitzer Prize their coverage of the secrets of the Vietnam war as a result of the leaked Pentagon Papers. But the same New York Times was recently instrumental in seeing that accused leaker Jack Teixeira was put behind bars.
So why in one case was the leaking laudable and in the other case despicable? Again, what were the accusations and who were being accused, or who would be effected by the accusations. Put another way, for the sake or winning an argument or a point, we will happily sacrifice consistency. This is the most upsetting thing to me in today's political and media landscape. And it's spreading to the rest of society.
While winning an argument and being consistent may seem related, they are actually two different things that should be approached differently.
Winning an argument is often focused on proving your point and convincing others that you're right. Winning an argument can also sometimes be done through manipulation, intimidation, or using logical fallacies, which can be damaging to the conversation and the relationship.
On the other hand, being consistent is about following through on your actions and words, and maintaining integrity in your behavior. Consistency can be an important trait in building trust and credibility, and it can also help you to achieve your goals more effectively. Being consistent does not mean that you should always insist on being right or winning an argument, but rather that you should strive to behave in a way that is aligned with your values and goals.
In some cases, winning an argument and being consistent may overlap, such as when you are advocating for a position that is consistent with your values and goals. But approach these situations with an open mind and a willingness to listen to others, rather than simply trying to prove your point or win the argument at all costs.
It's important to remember that winning an argument and being consistent are not the same thing. I have ultimate respect, for example, for those few voices that continually say that our national debt is problem that needs to be addressed and make that point all the time. But, in general, most of the time the hand wringing and tragedy waiting to happen as a result of the debt come from the party that is out of power. Only then, does it become a crisis.
Being consistent, by the way, does not mean that one can never change a position or a policy. Self evaluation and challenging one's self indicates to me a healthy exercise of stimulative thought. And if you see a change in position you should be able to explain and point out to yourself and others what led to the change. It should never be for the expediency of the moment in trying to win an argument (although playing devil's advocate can be fun).
I yearn for the day that you can consistently rely on news media and politicians to always bring forth truth. But I fear it will never come, because it might cause some in those vocations to say something that is not in their vocabulary: I was wrong.
Five Michiganians Whose Lives Were Ruined After Winning Big Lottery Jackpots
Gallery Credit: George McIntyre