So, those who have seen my (Alan’s) “debates” in the comments sections of some of my posts, will no doubt be aware of The Independent Whig, a person with whom I often have profound disagreements. I think that these disagreements are mostly because he wants to paint me as wrong, because I’m a liberal who dares to argue against elements of Jonathan Haidt’s work. What’s odd is that he often ends up saying the same things as me about quite a lot of Haidt’s theory. We seem to have at least some of the same complaints about Haidt, too. As such we actually seem to disagree on relatively little, at the level of theory, but we nevertheless have big arguments on the implications of that theory.
So, it’s nice to be able to say that here is a post on The Independent Whig’s blog about which I broadly agree. Indeed, the only thing I really disagree with is the over-simplification of “Left, Liberal/ Progressive” & “Right, Conservative” that he has a in handy little table about two-thirds to three-quarters of the way in.
Indeed, I think the opening sentence characterises our stoushes quite well
“Just as arguments between married couples are often not really about the particular issue that triggered them but rather about some deeper concept, so too are the conflicts between the political left and right. “
I have known for some time that the arguments are not about what we want from life, we’re human, we want broadly the same things; what differs is the way in which we think it is appropriate to go about getting them.
Check out his piece:
Left and Right are Arguing About the Argument Rather Than About the Real Issues