Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Fran Poretto and the Nice Guy Trap

Do you recall how eloquently Milton Friedman responded to a question or challenge on economics (or on anything, for that matter)?  It could be the most profound wisdom, but he always wrapped and delivered it in the simplest package.  Like getting an entire feast in one delicious, tender morsel?  Satisfying, completely, to the worst hunger.

Such is this essay from Francis Poretto, citing this essay from James Delingpole.  Witness...

Compromise is potentially constructive only when it's strictly about means: i.e., when the two sides angling toward a compromise sincerely agree on the end to be sought, and are both willing to allow that they might be wrong about what means would best serve that end. Under those conditions, everyone involved will be watching the outcome and judging the means applied by that standard alone. When the ends are opposed to one another, compromise must disserve one or the other. It cannot be any other way.

As Delingpole, at Breitbart London, says:

It's what I call the 'Dogshit Yoghurt Fallacy'.

On one side of the argument are those of us who think yoghurt works best with a little fruit or maybe just on its own. On the other are those who believe passionately that what yoghurt really needs is the addition of something more earthy, organic, recycled - like maybe a nice scoop of dogshit.

Now you can call me a dangerous extremist if you like, for refusing under any conditions to accommodate the alternative point of view. Or you could call me one of those few remaining brave souls in a cowardly, compromised world still prepared to tell it like it is: that dogshit into yoghurt simply doesn't go, no matter how many expert surveys you cite, nor how eco-friendly it shows you to be, nor how homeopathic the dosage.

Let us all abandon the nonsense of feeling guilty for refusing their dogshit yoghurt.

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