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  1. #51
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post
    1st claim: that's all it is, a claim. You have no evidence to back up what you're saying.

    False.

    I am emotional obviously because I care deeply about how science is being used and regarded and I disagree with people who claim "science says"/"science does" when it does no such thing. You are not responsible for how I feel about this matter; however, I will not sit and let such general claims pass.
    I can understand this (sometimes I've reacted the same way), but it's irrelevant with our discussion.


    You are misrepresenting what I'm saying. A closer analogy to what I'm saying is "there are many reasons why people smoke apart from personal responsibility and we don't know all of them as yet. blaming individuals does not help the situation. Understanding the various factors and coming up with a plan to address a wide swathe of them is better than pinning it on an oversimplified 'people are lazy/bad' explanation". No number of adjectives that you use makes what I say any less untrue.
    It is irresponsible, because if you are correct, then there is no such a concept as "personal responsibility".
    Of course there are several factors that could predispose us to chainsmoking for instance. Of course some of them could be inherited through the DNA methylation patterns of our parents. And there has to be several other factors as well. I've never denied this.

    But tell me: where lies the responsibility of the individual if everything is determined in advance?

    Sometimes, you can make conscious choices (even if you're influenced or predisposed to some of them in particular). Walking more than a mile a day is one of these conscious choices. Banning junk food is another. I'm not claiming it will be enough to instantly solve your particular obesity issue, but according to statistics, it might help. And so far, according to our limited current state of knowledge, lack of proper exercice and lack of nutritional education seem to be the factors the most correlated with the current obesity pandemic. Don't you agree? Can you prove me I'm wrong, or will you stubbornly stay in denial?

    Of course you can repeat like a parrot that correlation doesn't always imply causation. You would be right, but you would not adress the issue nor will you answer my question (and you know it).

    If you have a new radical evidence to show, please do. I'm curious.


    Again misrepresenting what I'm saying. My path of reasoning is that we may not understand everything about something but when our understanding of the situation changes with new data, our attitudes should also shift.
    That's obvious, but that has nothing to do with the logic you are trying to use here.

    No one is objective, obviously. But claiming to know everything about a situation, over-simplifying based on the oldest models of epidemiology and being stubborn despite being confronted with new ideas is just bad science.
    The question is not whether we do not take new ideas into account, everybody does. You're being trivial and defensive.

    You're judging me in terms of morality, with your own emotions. I haven't and I don't care.

    I'm just concerned with your logics and the resulting epistemological model. And to use your own words, bad logic means bad science.

    Once again, if you deny everything, then you can't conclude anything. If you deny the possibility that we can make responsible choices, then why should we continue this discussion?
    So far, you're using the same tactics that the Tobacco industry used in the past, very similar to global warming deniers. It is leading us to nowhere.
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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  2. #52
    Member subwayrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post


    I speak as a member of the minority, though admittedly I'm only on the fringe now. I can't help relating whenever stuff like this comes up. The memories are - like you said - too potent. I feel like I was pressured by society into believing I was fat when I was underweight, and it's taken me over 15 years to heal from the behavioral ramifications of that belief. I'm not blaming society for my struggle, but I'm floored when I see people suggest that society being negative is a good way to solve a problem. It should flip an alarm in people's minds when "acceptance" is being fought against. Acceptance and advocacy are not the same.
    Though I've never been by any means overweight, I've somehow managed to struggle with body issues myself. I was, in fact, too skinny as a child -- so skinny I was made fun of! I suppose both extremes are ridiculed. But, yes, one of my classmates called me "fat" out of the blue one day, and from there it lodged itself in my mind, and like a parasite fed on my thoughts and grew to control them.

    I become very self-absorbed by my Four "suffering," unfortunately, and forget all about the pain of others. I hadn't thought for some time about what it must feel like to be overweight in this society. On the upside (in this context), at least there are many other people in this country who are overweight, so it's not as lonely and degrading as it would otherwise be.

  3. #53
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post
    Funny how "behaving like a religious person" is treated like an insult here.

    Again misrepresenting my position. Already addressed it and not gonna bother further. You obviously have misconceptions about what I believe and think and are somehow attacking a straw man. No matter, I've already made my position clear as to what I object to, and I know that my judgment with regards to scientific study, especially in my own area of expertise, is spot on.
    What I find funny, is how you attack me for something you are exactly doing. For instance, here, look at your own incredible arrogance!
    You're just destroying your argument in the same sentence. You probably know the saying: "Do what I say, not what I do"...

    I may be sarcastic, I enjoy to (gently) tease people sometimes -shame on me-, but if you read me more carefully, I'm way more cautious than you are and use only very, very, very general statistics and obvious (trivial) evidences.
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackmail! View Post
    False.
    Again, claim.

    It is irresponsible, because if you are correct, then there is no such a concept as "personal responsibility".
    Of course there are several factors that could predispose us to chainsmoking for instance. Of course some of them could be inherited through the DNA methylation patterns of our parents. And there have to be several other factors as well. I've never denied this.

    But tell me: where lies the responsibility of the individual if everything is determined in advance?
    Again, where have I ever said that genetics determines everything? You're putting words in my mouth. I say that the situation is complex; there is more than one factor, hence people should be treated with empathy instead of finger-pointing. The choices that individuals make is just that - up to the individual. Giving them information does not mean that they are absolved from personal responsibility, however, it is a professional responsibility to provide ALL POSSIBLE INFORMATION. Realising that you have certain biological tendencies i.e. towards alcoholism, towards heart disease etc. can make people more self-aware about the work that they have to do to keep themselves healthy. If anything, I say that information about biology and genetics increases personal responsibility because you can't claim that you "didn't know" that you had that tendency.

    Sometimes, you can make conscious choices (even if you're influenced or predisposed to some of them in particular). Walking more than a mile a day is one of these conscious choices. Banning junk food is another. I'm not claiming it will be enough to instantly solve your obesity issue, but according to statistics, it might help. And so far, according to our limited current state of knowledge, lack of exercice and lack of nutritional education seem to be the factors the most correlated with the current obesity pandemic. Don't you agree? Can you prove me I'm wrong?
    And I have never said that any of that was wrong. Exercise and changing the way that we eat are two things that I did mention in my original post! What I did also say was that it is important to study the issue further and not do finger-pointing because obesity is in itself complex and beyond just personal responsibility. Not knowing everything does not stop people from taking action, nor does it absolve people from personal responsibility. However, using "scientific studies" to point the finger only at personal responsibility is something that I disagreed with from the start. Our starting positions are not that different, again, I said in my first post that my understanding is just a bit more nuanced.


    That's obvious, but that has nothing to do with the logic you are trying to use here.
    So... my logic is obvious, but has nothing to do with the logic that I use?

    The question is not whether we do not take new ideas into account, everybody does. You're being trivial and defensive.
    Everyone does? And yet who was discounting biological factors and saying that it's irresponsible to inform people about them because they'll use it as an excuse and it's people's own fault if they're fat because they refuse to only walk 1 mile a day? And... ad hominem again because you're being nonsensical again.

    You're judging me in terms of morality, with your own emotions. I haven't and I don't care.
    I am judging you in terms of what you claim. My conclusions are drawn based on your claim, stated over and over agian, that because lots of data shows that factors such as eating badly and driving and not enough exercise are factors in obesity, people are at fault for their obesity and must take personal responsibility and if we mention any other factors, people will jump on it as an excuse to justify current behavior and absolve them of their responsibility. Is that not what you have stated again and again in this thread? I say that it is being biased and unscientific. Nothing to do with morals, simply to do with being accurate about the reality of research.

    I'm just concerned with your logics and the resulting epistemological model. And to use your own words, bad logic means bad science.
    Funny again because you said "my own words" but I've never said that. At this point I doubt your ability to read and comprehend.

    Once again, if you deny everything, then you can't conclude anything. If you deny the possibility that we can make responsible choices, then why should we continue this discussion?
    Never denied that we can make responsible choices. Never denied "everything", simply that what we can see now is "everything". From the very start, I have advocated making responsible choices and increased education. What I have rejected is thinking that irresponsible choice is the ONLY factor in the situation and blaming obese people because it's counter-productive.

    -------------------------------------

    Anyway, it seems pointless to argue with you further since you misrepresent what I say, make up quotes that I didn't say, make personal attacks and think that "because I say so" is a good enough justification in this discussion. I should've gone for a nap 3 hours ago, what a waste of my time.

  5. #55
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    It's irresponsible to attempt to curb an epidemic primarily with shaming tactics.

    I think addressing public policy would be more effective: better education, better access to healthcare, better access to public transportation and walking/biking, agricultural subsidies that support public health instead of big ag, etc.

    IMO, a lot of people are here today because their ancestors were able to store enough fuel in their bodies to survive periodic famine. This is not a functional trait in an environment without major food scarcity and with sedentary lifestyles.

    We can beat up on people all day long and shame them and tell them they are ugly, but until we address the underlying problems, it's not going to get better.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  6. #56
    Senior Member LEGERdeMAIN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post
    It's irresponsible to attempt to curb an epidemic primarily with shaming tactics.

    I think addressing public policy would be more effective: better education, better access to healthcare, better access to public transportation and walking/biking, agricultural subsidies that support public health instead of big ag, et

    IMO, a lot of people are here today because their ancestors were able to store enough fuel in their bodies to survive periodic famine. This is not a functional trait in an environment without major food scarcity and with sedentary lifestyles.

    We can beat up on people all day long and shame them and tell them they are ugly, but until we address the underlying problems, it's not going to get better.
    So addressing the underlying problem (overeating/drinking and a functional trait in an environment without major food scarcity and with sedentary lifestyles) by not addressing the underlying problem (addressing public policy would be more effective: better education, better access to healthcare, better access to public transportation and walking/biking, agricultural subsidies that support public health instead of big ag, et)? Isn't that what we're already doing?
    “Some people will tell you that slow is good – but I’m here to tell you that fast is better. I’ve always believed this, in spite of the trouble it’s caused me. Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba…”


  7. #57
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    @nonsequitur


    OK, you have acknowledged that I was correct and that we broadly agree. The rest is personal attacks again, so I don't care.

    And by the way "if we mention any other factors, people will jump on it as an excuse to justify current behavior and absolve them of their responsibility", it's funny because it is exactly what is happening here and has already happened here countless times. I've witnessed the same phenomena repeated over, and over, and over again over the years. Just give a drug addict an excuse, any excuse in fact, and it will do the trick -most of the times-.

    But believe me, we have tested this situation in many different cultures, in many different cities: you make people walk more or use a bike when they go to work, and statistically, they will miraculously lose weight on average. It's like magic and it works everywhere and everytime. It works in France, it works in China, it works in the US. But there's probably a lot of other specific, undiscovered factors, of course.

    And forgive me once again if I think that we're not that physiologically different from the people who lived during the 80es. If we're more obese now than they were, it may be deeply related with our new lifestyle, or our new environment. Who knows? I understand that you obviously have a huge issue with inductive and probabilistic reasoning, but it's part of science nonetheless, even it's far from being perfect -beware the confirmation bias!-. But without induction, you can't do any hypothesis, and hence you can't test anything.

    Have a nice day.
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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  8. #58
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post

    I think addressing public policy would be more effective: better education, better access to healthcare, better access to public transportation and walking/biking, agricultural subsidies that support public health instead of big ag, etc.
    Absolutely. You're spot on. You listed all the recommendations we do every month to our mayors and politicians.

    You would be a great urban health advisor!
    "A man who only drinks water has a secret to hide from his fellow-men" -Baudelaire

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  9. #59
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LEGERdeMAIN View Post
    So addressing the underlying problem (overeating/drinking and a functional trait in an environment without major food scarcity and with sedentary lifestyles) by not addressing the underlying problem (addressing public policy would be more effective: better education, better access to healthcare, better access to public transportation and walking/biking, agricultural subsidies that support public health instead of big ag, et)? Isn't that what we're already doing?
    Not in any substantial way unless I'm missing something.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  10. #60
    Intriguing.... Quinlan's Avatar
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    I'm about to go to bed but just a quick thought, it is hypothetically possible for substantial changes in the prevalence of certain genes within a few generations; sexual selection (assortive mating), immigration, birth rates in different subsets can all in theory change the genetic makeup of a population quite rapidly.

    Blackmail, what are your thoughts on the very high heritability of overweight/obesity/BMI in general?
    Act your age not your enneagram number.

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