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Discussion » Questions » Human Behavior » Do you find an argument more credible when research is presented?

Do you find an argument more credible when research is presented?

Posted - December 9, 2018


  • 23458

      I don't know: can you cite anything that backs up the validity of that question, please?
      December 9, 2018 2:14 PM MST

  • 7171
    I'll do you one better. I'll even give you proper APA formatting.

    Asking, Just. (2018). Do you find an argument more credible when research is presented? Retrieved December 9, 2018, from
      December 9, 2018 2:20 PM MST

  • 22721
    One would think that quite obvious. I finally convinced my stepdaughter to research a subject before she spouts off some trivial fact. She is getting quite good at it. This post was edited by Element 99 at December 10, 2018 2:03 AM MST
      December 9, 2018 2:26 PM MST

  • 5686
    Not when it "proves" that I don't exist or that I am not me.   Seems many people on this site are pretty obsessed with "proof" of this or that.  I have lived long enough to see various kinds of "research" "proving" all manner of things, none of which seem to agree.  Also seems we make our own research to "prove" what we want to prove.  Which of course is very human and very imperfect.  When I grew up it was a time not so much of proof but of possibilities and the sky was the limit and the only thing really that bound us was custom.  So rather than giving in to despair and resignation we learned we could make our own lives for ourselves and find our own truths and our own methods.  Whatever was "proven" that we should or should not be doing.  So I don't believe in "proof" at all as long as in any way it discourages and imprisons rather than frees and opens doors for us. 
      December 9, 2018 3:27 PM MST

  • 23458

    "Not when it 'proves' that I don't exist . . . "

    How can anything be proven if it is not a fact or is not correct?  It might be stated, claimed, intimated to, alluded to, etc., but not specifically proven
      December 9, 2018 3:34 PM MST

  • 5686
    My sentiments exactly.  So much seems to be "proven" which are not either facts or correct!
      December 9, 2018 3:50 PM MST

  • 23458

      You're the one who wrote the they've proven you don't exist. It's an illogically-put phrase. 
      December 9, 2018 3:53 PM MST

  • 1688
    I don't see how anybody could "prove" by research that you don't exist or that you are not you.
    The fact that you write here is one proof that you do exist and that you are you.
      December 9, 2018 5:51 PM MST

  • 5686
    That is comforting to know at least. 
      December 10, 2018 4:37 AM MST

  • 5686
    No - what I wrote is that I don't find an argument more "credible" when the research used to substantiate it "proves" I don't exist. 
      December 9, 2018 4:11 PM MST

  • 1688
    Which suggests that you have good sense and sound judgement in practical matters.

    Not all things that claim to be proof are proof.
    That is why thinking skills need to be taught - so that people can examine each other's thinking and thus recognise what is BS.

    Big business companies make bogus claims using bogus research in all sorts of ways.
    For instance, Monsanto claimed that glyphosate was the safest of weedicides. This created a false sense of safety and misrepresented the truth. It was more accurate to say that glyphosate (or Round-Up) was the least unsafe of weedicides.
    Tobacco companies spent decades claiming there was no proof that smoking cause lung cancer and other lethal diseases.
    Petroleum companies knew as early as the 1930's that the CO2 bi-product of burning fossil fuels was starting to cause global warming, but they deliberately created arguments that presented false evidence to ensure that governments would continue to support them. 
    Their unpublished projections from modelling have now proved to accurate in degree and timing, but they ran multiple campaigns to promote their businesses regardless of the long-term consequences.
    This is why we should always mistrust -- and at least independently peer review) the science that comes from privately funded sources which have something to gain from their results.
      December 14, 2018 4:45 PM MST

  • 159

    Some spout off research that is not accurate or taken from only one view, so for the most part I put little credit to most of that.  Show me the Carfax.

      December 9, 2018 4:15 PM MST

  • 1688

    A valid argument requires both sound premises and logic.

    Research provides proof that the facts used are correct - hence the premises are more likely to be sound.

    Then one checks for flaws or fallacies in the logic.

    If both pass, then one has a convincing argument.

    It helps to be open-minded and to be an independent, alert and active thinker.

    Many people regard an argument as nothing more than a futile dispute over opinions, beliefs, and values.
    Some are convinced that their own views must be correct, irrespective of logic or evidence.
    They hold them unquestioningly, for psychological or social reasons, even if the ideas themselves lead to poor relationships and dysfunctional lives.

    I believe the whole world could be happier if more people were willing to learn the skills of thinking and how to use them.

    This post was edited by bookworm at December 14, 2018 4:28 PM MST
      December 9, 2018 5:22 PM MST

  • 5686
    So then "poor relationships and dysfunctional lives" are the indicators of an unconvincing argument?   I'm not sure how those would be defined.  Has any one of us been so fortunate as to always have good relationships?  Or to always function as well as we are able?  And I am just thinking that spending our time "selecting" research and checking for "flaws and fallacies" in our logic - is that what we most enjoy doing with our lives?  If those be the requirements then it seems why bother to engage in argument at all?  Which is why I think best to just state our views and reasons for them and leave the "arguments" to others who most enjoy that. 
      December 10, 2018 4:52 AM MST

  • 1688
    There are different definitions for the word argument.
    Because of the particular way JA worded her question, I chose the meaning most common in places like universities and courts of law.

    My parents' moved in circles of dinner parties with intellectuals. I listened to them when I was growing up. Their egos were not attached to being right - so if one of them found that his or her idea was not correct on the basis of logic or fact, he or she was not offended, but rather, interested and grateful to become better informed, or able to see the flaw in the thinking.
    Today, the same is still true in university and affiliated circles and that is not just some tiny or remote set of people - it probably includes most of the middle classes.
    For such people, to argue is a pleasurable activity -- because they are genuinely interested in which ideas work better than others, including arguments over which values define "better" according to context.

    If talking about the day to day arguments between people in personal relationships, there are many different ways to resolve them.
    Sometimes logic and fact have a crucial role to play in those too, such as when a paranoid partner accuses their innocent partner of having an affair.
    But when the issues are about differences in needs and/or values, the only things that matter in resolving the issues are honesty, empathy and the willingness to find a creative solution which works equally well for both partners ( or all the people affected.)

      December 14, 2018 7:22 AM MST

  • 5686
    Really not sure what any of this has to do with anything I wrote.  I did not go to university though I guess I move in what you are calling "affiliated circles" but what I have found is that most people just want to enjoy their lives and do the best they can with them. Yes people learn but they don't care to have themselves constantly challenged and argued with.  They wish simply to live their lives rather than analyze them and challenge themselves.  
      December 14, 2018 7:48 PM MST

  • 2625
    (IMO) Credible corroborating research would have its merits for belief from a critical thinking person.
      December 9, 2018 5:36 PM MST

  • Some say radiocarbon dating is accurate, some say it's not, both have researched extensively and hold to their claims.  Which is right?
      December 9, 2018 5:51 PM MST

  • 22274
      December 9, 2018 7:32 PM MST

  • 3107
    We have peer review because the best way to "prove" (strengthen) a research conclusion is to try to destroy it.  A good peer-reviewed research study should always make an argument more credible.
      December 9, 2018 8:08 PM MST

  • 691
    To large extent, it depends on who is arguing!!
      December 10, 2018 2:02 AM MST

  • 36314
    I used to, until I saw some of the RESEARCH.

    Just because you have supposed "evidence" of your argument, doesn't mean it necessarily holds water.

      December 10, 2018 2:22 AM MST

  • 5850
    People who argue with me will not tolerate research. They want a link to some famous person who says exactly what I say. That's because it's a nuisance to have to read a research paper and it's so easy to reject a link. For instance they can reject a link just because they don't feel like reading it.
      December 10, 2018 2:06 PM MST

  • 5850
    There was one forum where I remarked that it's a mother's responsibility to teach her kids basic social skills. One member came right back with "Oh, yeah? What's your source?"
      December 15, 2018 8:58 PM MST