Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Recognizing a Difference in What Is Being Talked About

It is nice when the world or the Internet provides a perfect example.

NPR has a podcast and a blog on the economy called Planet Money. In yesterday's podcast, they had a little debate about whether financial innovation over the last twenty-give years has been, on balance, good or bad.

Starting at about the 21:30 mark, the participants start to address the question of what they are talking about. At around 22:25, one of them goes so far as to say that by his opponent's definition he would have to agree. When they begin to address their different understandings of the question at hand, we start to see the real disagreements between them -- and the larger areas of real agreement.

Of course, it's NPR, which has has made its reputation on being more thoughtful.

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