FAKTA 101 – Berpikir Kritis Tentang Fakta

Written by Mariani Ng Posted in Mariani Ng on Friday, 04 February 2022.

(Tulisan ini ditulis sebagai review dan diskusi atas artikel Michael Hall di mailist Neurons, tanggal 25 Oktober 2021 berjudul 'Critical Thinking About Facts', atau bisa dibaca di https://meta-mind.com/article/item/critical-thinking-about-facts.html ).

Pagi ini ada badai salju di tempat saya berada beberapa bulan ini, Burlington - Ontario Kanada. Saya baru saja bangun, dan saat berjalan ke kamar mandi, mata melayang ke arah jendela di depan sana melihat hujan salju dengan salju tebal menutupi mobil dan jalanan di luar. Wow..!! Serta merta saya melangkah balik ke kamar, buka lemari mengambil sweater dan langsung memakainya, baru kembali ke kamar mandi. Refleks. 1 jam kemudian, saya mulai merasa gerah dan tersadar, saya tadi langsung samber sweater begitu melihat salju tebal, padahal suhu di dalam ruangan 22⁰C. Jadi pakai sweater ini adalah respon atas fakta yang mana?

Dalam tulisannya yang satu ini, Michael menjelaskan terperinci beberapa tingkat/level pemikiran kita tentang 'fakta' yang kita katakan sebagai fakta selama ini, dengan contoh apa yang saya alami pagi tadi.

Kita selalu mengganggap fakta itu solid, serius ada dan nyata, padahal belum tentu senyata apa yang kita pikirkan. Beliau menjelaskan bahwa ada langkah-langkah yang terjadi dalam pemikiran kita menanggapi sebuah ‘fakta’, yang saya jabarkan kembali dengan contoh di atas sebagai berikut:

More Problem With Facts

Written by L. Michael Hall, Ph.D Posted in L. Michael Hall, Ph.D. on Thursday, 06 January 2022.

From: L. Michael Hall
2021 Neurons #83
December 31, 2021
Facts #11

With this article, I am concluding this series on Critical Thinking about Facts.  With the new year, there will be a new series.  In the last post I noted that facts become really problematic when—

  • They are out of context so that there’s no way to evaluate them.
  • They are partial and many things which need to be said about them are not said, but left out.
  • They are anonymous and not owned by whoever identified or created the fact.
  • They are coded in vague, abstract, evaluative terminology rather than descriptive empirical language (sensory-based language)

Another problem concerns the fluidity versus immutability of a given fact.  Generally, the word fact carries an unstated implication, namely, that it is immutable.  “This is the way it is, it is a fact.”  Yet while some facts are immutable (they don’t change), many are fluid.  They change.  And they are facts which are more likely to change over time.

Sometimes a factual statement asserts something that just is, something that is immutable.  It is something that you cannot change or alter, something that is a given.  “Like what?” you may ask. Well, like the old joke, “There are two inevitables in life—death and taxes.”  Factually, you and I are going to die.  Factually, every person who has ever been born before the last generation has died.  That’s an immutable fact that you cannot gainsay.   Argue against it all you will, rage against it, protest by raising your fist to the heavens—and the fact remains.

The Problem With Facts

Written by L. Michael Hall, Ph.D Posted in L. Michael Hall, Ph.D. on Thursday, 06 January 2022.

From: L. Michael Hall
2021 Neurons #82
December 27, 2021
Facts #10


In this series on Critical Thinking about Facts, we have seen that there are lots of problems with facts.  While facts are essential to our well-being and sanity, they are not so easy to access or determine.  What’s clear is that merely calling something a “fact,” does not make it so.  And there’s a great many ways to distort a “fact” so that it is not factual.

The next time someone quotes a “fact” to you to make a point be sure to ask these questions: What is the context and background of the fact?  What are you not saying about the fact?

Recent Biden went on the campaign trail declaring that the new three trillion bill “will cost nothing,zero.”  “It’s all paid for already.”  He repeated that so-called “fact” over and over.  But it seemed fishy to me from the beginning.  If it costs nothing and if it’s already paid for, why all the opposition?  Why did Joe Manchin worry about the cost and did the Congressional Budget Office estimate it would cost three trillion?  How could the government aim to spend 3 to 5 trillion dollars when it has a deficient of 21 trillion and it “cost nothing.”

Every news channel these days lead out on their evening news about Covid.  They state “with the new variant omicron, cases of covid are rising.”  But what are they not saying?  Without more context, a fact like that is not actually a fact, but mere propaganda.  So let’s get some more facts. Here’s one from the CDC:

Why METAMIND?  read