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Posted by Don Borchelt on Monday, December 7, 2009

I was reminded of the current "How About that Global Warming" thread, when I saw this in the Boston Globe on-line, yesterday:

"During the first episode of “The Colbert Report,’’ in October 2005, Stephen Colbert coined “truthiness’’ and gave the decade one of its most defining words. Colbert was alluding to the way cable-news bloviators and political figures have gotten used to making big, passionate statements whether or not the data supports them. They assert truth based on gut instinct rather than on fact or logic. The word, so ironic and critical, eventually made it into dictionaries." 

-Matthew Gilbert, Boston Globe (, Dec. 6, 2009

2 comments on “Truthiness”

Laurence Diehl Says:
Monday, December 7, 2009 @8:40:44 AM

Don - I can relate. I think I understand why the "gut instinct" approach can be appealing, but the consequences are not.
Oh - and Mike Humphries wants his hat back.

edavidt Says:
Thursday, December 10, 2009 @6:50:02 AM

Yes, and the challenge is that humans want to be grabbed at the gut level. It is very appealing. In general, they don't want to analyze data.

In fact, I am thinking that when they are grabbed by someone at the gut level, they describe the grabber as "having charisma."

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