The trap of false dilemmas
Something in the Florida summer air is impacting the nature of discussions within which I've found myself entangled lately. Arguments presenting false dichotomies, or "false dilemmas," seem as abundant as the dandelion weeds in my yard. Consider this video, which captures the essence of the misguided conclusions that result when we assume there are only two choices. Pay particular attention to the final 30 seconds where the importance of knowing what you're talking about is underscored. My two cents: Policy discussions, such as how to create jobs and preserve the environment, suffer when we stuff our options into politically cast choices of only red or blue.
This is not to say that all solutions can or should be found in the middle. I've always hated the word "compromise" as a solution option, because seeking compromise is often a "feel good" pursuit of those unwilling to really sacrifice when necessary. I posit that solutions to many of our current economic and political dilemmas can be addressed by expanding our knowledge base and looking creatively at the new options emerging as a result.