EQUITY RUN UPDATE: $15,196 | +51.2%
There has been a series of public indictments recently that have killed the old notions of due process, of innocent until proven guilty. The broader trend seems to be an utter lack of an open exchange of ideas. From egregious crimes, to divergent political opinions, it seems that the only thing that matters in our assessment of the validity of one’s position, guilty/innocent, good/bad, valid/invalid, is what the public thinks. Not even the public, really. Just one’s tribe. The people that think like me and vote like me. Expressing a contrarian view or even just raising the question, “are we sure this is right?” or “wait, let’s listen to what he has to say” or “let the justice take its course,” is tantamount to stupidity, bigotry, ignorance, and… guilt. By association.
I’m not even looking for a dissenting voice. I’m just looking for a discourse. A civil civic discourse. It goes in all different directions, politically and socially. It feels like everyone is doing it and we are caught in a war of idea that is spiraling out of control. There was a great opinion piece in the NY Times a few weeks ago, “The Dying Art of Disagreement“. It encapsulates my sentiment very well.
Even bringing up the following list of subjects that I think deserve better discourse, I feel vulnerable to an irate backlash from some tribe, the same way that the Google employee suffered (not arguying for his case, but for the process he of which he was a part):
- Climate change
- Sexual misconduct
- Freedom of religion
- Freedom of speech
- Gun control
I suspect you, the reader, are already trying to pin me into a tribe and see if I am “one of them” or “one of us.” If that’s the case, you have proven my case.
For those who want to trade, learning to be a contrarian is good place to start. When the crowd says, “XYZ is obviously right/good/a given/unquestionable/a no-brainer/duh/”only an idiot still believes ABC”/no doubt,” start preparing your chips to make your trade in the opposite direction. It may take a few tries, but eventually the tide turns and you’ll be on top of the wave that’s about to crash.
Personally, if someone’s best argument for their case is, “well, everyone today believes it…”, I run from it and trade against as fast as I can. Give me a good, well-thought discourse to build your argument. Not just others’ opinions.