Review for exam 1 fl 2015 - 1 Critical Thinking We are...

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1) Critical Thinking : We are living in a time of rapid and accelerating technological and social change in which we must begin to prepare ourselves to direct that change and adapt to the consequences if we are to prosper as individuals and insure our survival as a species. a) The first principle of critical thinking is to embrace the concept of HUMILITY : we need to understand that we may be wrong intellectually and morally and that the ideas and values of others may have merit. b) Even in the hard sciences in which we have considerable confidence in our current theories, an excellent scientist must recognize that extent of her ignorance. c) The most enlightened critical thinkers are those who recognize the extent of their own ignorance. d) Change is inevitable: SHIFT HAPPENS! We must learn to deal with it. i) Individually, we may be psychologically predisposed to embrace change, moderate change, or resist change. (1) We must not, however, deny change, if we are to prosper. e) Effective reason requires recognizing that there are a variety of constraints on our thinking so we can reduce their impact and get closer to the “truth”. i) Jonathan Haidt: our righteous minds lead us to form groups, set our groups in opposition to other groups, and BLIND US TO THE TRUTH. (1) The point of his work is to enable us to develop moral humility so that we can cooperate. (2) Moral humility allows us to recognize that the values and ideas of others have value. (a) Moral humility allows us to use all the tools in the toolbox to create a better society & seek “truth”. (3) Haidt posits five and possibly six foundations of morality and suggests that political liberals and conservatives embrace these to different extents but that each contributes value. (a) Political conservatives have five channel moral minds that include in-group loyalty, respect for authority, and purity and sanctity and speak for stability and tradition. (b) Political liberals reject these three channels and instead embrace diversity, challenge authority, resist the imposition of controls to insure purity and sanctity and speak for the weak and oppressed. (c) Haidt argues that many of the problems we face require us to cooperate which moral humility. ii) Antonio Gramsci: CULTURAL HEGEMONY ; elites manipulate culture so that non-elites adopt elite values and the elite world view which presents the status quo is natural, inevitable, and beneficial to all rather than a constructed situation designed primarily to benefit elites. (1) Neoliberalism: The dominant ideology in political economy of the capitalist countries today (a) Reliance on private markets; Market Fundamentalism (b) Limited role for government; maintain order and protect private property (i) Deregulation (ii) Privatization of public resources, institutions, and programs 1. Tragedy of the Commons often given as rationale (iii) Supply side economics: cut taxes to encourage investment (c) Reduce power of labor unions (d) Globalization (i) Free movement of capital (and to a lesser extent people) across national borders.
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  • Summer '13
  • Pereira

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