Considering skepticism and "debates"

Here’s something I been chewing on . . .

There are two kinds of skeptics, complete skeptic (that includes self-skepticism) and one-directional skeptic (aka contrarian types) There are two kinds of debate, one where learning is the goal, the other debate for debate{and fortune'$}sake. In the first you listen to and weigh your opponent's information and arguments, with the goal being to use opposing arguments to better understand one's own reasoning and justifications. To learn from evidence and arguments... allowing the best to inspire reevaluating our own understanding. That's how we learn, and evolve, how we get better and move forward as we travel through our short lives. Hey and sometimes it hurts and our egos get bruised but that's part of the game of life and growing... know what I mean? The second is all about personal point scoring relying on tricks rather than a serious dialogue it has no interest in learning or truth, only in "winning".
Any thoughts, any one?

I would call the first one “dialogue” and I’m not sure a debate format is conducive. Unless it’s sort of a mock debate where both parties are taking sides that they aren’t convinced are completely true. And I’m not mocking that, it’s a valuable exercise. Debate is better designed for two opposing parties who have considered each others’ arguments and have reached conclusions. The learning then occurs in those who are listening. This is different than learning from a single expert who can present only evidence that supports their conclusion.
Dialogue requires listening and suspending judgment. Each side is asked to consider the other’s argument and only explain why it doesn’t fit with their experience, not why they think the other person is wrong or some probability of error or logical misstep. I watched the Intelligence squared debate on GMO foods for instance. That was the proposition: “GMO foods” for or against. Against it in part was that the GMOs hadn’t delivered on original expectations, instead their primary success has been Round-up ready crops that have encouraged more herbicide use leading to dangers for butterflies and bees. The for argument was, that’s conflating GMO food with other things. Logically the “for” side was absolutely right, but of course that shut down a whole discussion that maybe we should be having.

I would call the first one "dialogue" and I'm not sure a debate format is conducive.
hmmm, I think there might be many scientist who would disagree - there are some quite heated debates that have gone down, that have still adhered to honesty and acknowledging the truth in other's statements and weaknesses in one's own as the differing view points are hammered out. I think you've... and the rest of society, seems to have fixated on the phony political style debates as though that's all there is to confrontational dialogue. But, what's to be expected of a society obsessed with me, me, me to the point they can't even see what's happening outside their comfie shelters (mental as well as physical). Oh and to begin with, isn't a constructive debate a form of dialogue? anyways

From watching Jim Steele’s string of videos where he’s comfortable with taking partial truths then cutting and pasting them onto totally
inappropriate comparisons in order to deceive - well, when not telling one out’n out lies.
But call him out on it and watch the “nice” guy turn vicious and rather than defending his claims,
it’s all about poor Jim being “attacked” because the new Republican/Libertarian standard is that lies are ok when it keeps their agenda moving forward.
Oh, but it’s OK for him to slander hard working ethical professionals…the double standards are astounding.
So here’s how a freakster for more ethical attitudes looks at it, as summed up in my closing paragraph of that Honest Liars documentary

Taking questions, James Randi responded to one with something I'd already jotted down in my notes as the single best line in the documentary, "People need to believe." Later, I had a chance to shake his hand and speak with him. I asked: “OK, people need to believe – what can we do with that? Where do we go from there?" He looked at me with those deep intense eyes, shrugged and shook his head for a beat, then perking up: “Teach the young ones." Then he reminded me of his foundation and invited me to check it out: - James Randi Educational Foundation - in particular After watching the documentary, I came to appreciate that (without knowing it) Randi had given me more than skills to deal with con artists. He'd helped me learn that I was my own toughest challenge – falling in love with my own notions and refusing to acknowledge my own blindspots, being afraid to be proven wrong. Fabricating bubbles of contrived realities in order to justify rejecting contrary evidence no matter how valid it is. Those are each of our worst enemies. And what of our allies? There's the passion to keep learning about this incredible world I inhabit for a short moment. Appreciating that no matter how much I think I may have learned or know, there’s more to learn. Besides, I could be wrong and need to remain willing to honestly listen to and digest new information – then base my belief on the strength of the evidence presented – not on my tender ego or desires. If I’m wrong it’s a learning opportunity and not an excuse to lash out against the bearer of better information.
Won't find any of that ethic alive in the "public debate"

A dialogue is a conversation, formal or informal, between two people about any subject. It can also be a theatrical performance. If a discussion becomes heated with opposing points of view it becomes an argument. A debate is a formal or casual discussion on a particular topic. it can be between two or more people. In a formal debate there is usually a moderator, a premise, a timekeeper and an audience.

Where’e the eye-rolling smilie

Lois you ever read about the history of science
and the personalities and interactions that made revolutions in understanding happen :-S
Oh yea,
I remember you see the world and our days as a clock ticking off time.
never mind
. :blank: