BLATANTLY Contradictory Beliefs Held By the Same People

I once had a co-worker who insisted that the son my brother and his wife adopted was my nephew, but the two daughters my lesbian sister’s partner gave birth to and my sister adopted were not my nieces. I could never get an answer why for this belief.

I doubt that very much. Seems to me that some few feel that everyone should have a gun on their hip (not the bad people of course). Others think that they should all be banned and ground up. I think most probably feel that they shouldn’t be banned but tightly controlled.

Can I get a cite on most Americans believing that Iraqis and Afghans should be disarmed?

I think drinking beer is bad for me. I think I’ll have another beer.

[li]Photons are particles.[/li][li]Photons are waves.[/li][/ul]


Thank you Baraqiyal!

There’s also the whole “You hommasekshuls are immoral because all that stuff you guys do is OUTSIDE MARRIAGE, and that means its sinful and wrong”

“OK, we’ll get married”

Like hell you will!"

The Moon landing thing is full of contradictions.

Why did we fake the Moon landings? To beat the Russians.
Why didn’t the Russians blow the whistle? They were in on it.

The “landings” were actually filmed in the desert.
The bootprints were faked, because desert sand doesn’t hold bootprints.

That’s the one I like best from the idiots who oppose same sex marriage.

A personal non-favorite of mine are the people who loathe anyone who depends on public assistance for sponging off the system, but don’t start looking for a job in earnest until their unemployment runs out.

I know a few people who think that Bush is a drooling idiot, and also masterminding several fiendish plots. Is he some sort of evil savant who can’t tie his shoes, but is adept at multitasking nefarious conspiracies? I say this as a person who does not support Bush’s political agenda. Still, I would like these people to decide whether he is as dumb as a bag of hammers, or the incarnation of Dr. Fu Manchu.

Most likely response: Bush himself is a “drooling idiot” who is being manipulated by Fu Manchu-ian handlers like Cheney and Rove, thus fulfilling both halves of the equation.

Here’s one that includes me personally:

(1) I believe with certainty that physical matter, such as my body, always obeys physical laws.

(2) I believe–also with certainty–that I can, through some sort of non-physical “volition,” control my body, for example by raising my arm when there’s no physical impetus to do so. (To be sure, I just tried it. Yep, it works.)

I can believe either of these at various times, yet they seem inherently contradictory. I suspect this is the central mystery of our existence.

Nor surprisingly, my initial request has been largely ignored. For the most part, posters have used the thread to make simplistic observations that supposedly prove their opponents are hypocrites.

And while that can be fun (and I’ve made similar observations myself on numerous occasions), that’s not what I was referring to.

Almost all of us, however principled we might like to believe we are, are prepared to compromise our principles, at least occasionally. Some of us recognize the compromises we’re making and are uncomfortable about it. Others don’t reflect deeply enough to see the contradictions. Or, sometimes we hold two principles in high esteem, but are prepared to sacrifice one for the other.

In this thread, I’m really not interested in hearing (yet again) “Those liberals think it’s okay to kill babies, but not to kill Ted Bundy.” Or “Those religious maniacs say they oppose activist judges, but they let the Supreme Court determine the election in 2000.”

Such facile arguments have been made a thousand times before, and don’t score points with anybody who doesn’t alreayd agree with the sentiments.

I’ll give a few more examples of what I’m talking about.

  1. To repeat, throughout the Middle East, there are Muslims who assert SIMULTANEOUSLY that Osama Bin Laden didn’t carry out the 9/11 terrorist attacks AND that he’s a hero for carrying them out.

  2. Neo-Nazis regularly assert both that the Holocaust was a noble undertaking AND that it never happened.

  3. Listen to sports talk radio for a while, and you’ll hear loads of San Francisco Giants fans arguing that Barry Bonds never took steroids AND that the steroids didn’t really make him that much better of a ballplayer anyway.
    “Osama is innocent” may be absurd, but it’s a tenable position. “Osama was right to attack the Americans” may be immoral, but it’s tenable. To make BOTH assertions, as many Muslims do, is insane

“The Holocaust was justified” may be a repulsive statement, and “The Holocaust never happened” may be an idiotic statement- but anyone who makes both arguments simultaneously is either nuts or utterly evil.

“Barry Bonds is innocent” may be naive, but it’s tenable. “Barry was already a great player, so steroids didn’t help him that much” is morally obtuse, but it’s tenable. But only an irrational fan can make BOTH arguments in the space of one phone call.

I ask you to pick any of these cases, or offer another similar one you’ve heard, and offer some theory as to how people can bring themselves to accept two positions that are mutually exclusive.

I suspect that there’s fertile ground in the immigration issue, but that could be more along the lines of ordinary hypocrisy - which the OP is excluding - rather than real double thinking. Similarly, the energy issue: gasoline is so darned expensive that I can hardly afford to fill up the SUV anymore. Perhaps we are smart enough to recognize our own double standards - but not necessarily enough to want to do anything about them.

As for me (tongue in cheek), I think the government is spending too much money. What’s worse, the money’s not getting spent on the things I think are important. The gummint could save a lot of money by not spending it on the things I think are wasteful.

You have already been asked to cite this. Can you find evidence of even ONE individual making both statements?

Well, there’s no denying that Nazi’s are both nuts and evil. Havinbg said that, you have somewhat misrepresented their position. Mostly, they don’t deny the holocaust, they revise certain facts about it. They claim things like :

  • it “only” killed about half a million people.
  • They died from disease and starvation, there was no deliberate policy of extermination.

And many revisionists say that it was evil anyway. But even supporters d not neccesarily contradict themselves by saying 1) the holocaust was noble 2) the holocaust has been distorted by Jews.

Nazis are evil and should be opposed, but strawmen like this don’t help the matter.

I don’t follow sport, and I’m not American, so I know nothing of this case, but I don’t see the contradiction here. 1) BB didn’t use drugs 2) BB is so good he doesn’t need to use drugs. Where’s the contradiction.

I think the examples you have selected are poor. That is not to say you are wrong. People do sometimes try to rationalize contradictory beliefs. This is known as Cognitive Dissonance or Doublethink

Employed people pay into unemployment as insurance against being unemployed. Some people live on welfare without ever paying into it. BIG difference.

If someone pays private insurance and then uses it, it’s entirely different from someone who lives on welfare using Medicaid. BIG difference.

I’m amazed at how some religions won’t celebrate holidays because they have pagen origins, yet they use the names for the days of the week and months of the year that have pagen origins, being named after pagen gods.

Employed people pay into unemployment as insurance against being unemployed AND UNABLE TO FIND WORK. Big difference. The premiums are based on the assumption that people will look for a job, not take a 13 week vacation, then look for a job.

As an employee, I don’t pay into SUTA or FUTA. My employer does.

Perhaps it is different in other states.