Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Social Media Tip: Don't engage people who argue in bad faith

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • CT Social Media Tip: Don't engage people who argue in bad faith

    There are a small number of people who have demonstrated over time that they do not argue in good faith. Learn to recognize that earlier rather than later and save yourself some time and trouble by not repeating patterns of argumentation with the same people.

    Those who argue in bad faith deliberately misrepresent what you say, attempt to inflate their own positions with incorrect or dishonest interpretations of evidence, and return often to previous points that have been refuted in the past. They often appear to be two-faced, like having a nasty ad-hominem toward you on a public site then sending you a private supportive message to attempt to defuse it. Those familiar with sociopathic behaviors often see commonalities with those who argue in bad faith. While everyone might occasionally be a victim of self deception or occasionally respond emotionally, we are talking those who systematically do this over the time such that it appears to be a feature of their approach.

    Now we can't just assume this of others, and you only discover bad faith argumentation after an honest and sincere attempt to engage it. Do that enough times with the same person and they have established a fair track record from which you can make a reasonable judgment.

    I think these folks are worse than more common trolls in that they present a veneer of reasonableness that you only see through after long conversations and an effort on your part to engage the argument fairly. While that is sometimes beneficial to those watching from the sidelines, it became such a chore to do it repeatedly that I eventually had to block a few of these people. I've been having discussions about professional topics since about 2002 and there are only 4 people on my blocked list as of 2016. But wow did those 4 earn it!

    I sometimes arrive at a contentious professional discussion to find people I know repeatedly responding to posts that I can't see, while repeating themselves and covering the same ground repeatedly. That's a good sign that I've used the block or mute function well.

    Recognizing when the other party is arguing in bad faith and disengaging is an important part of keeping your sanity and spending your time where it can best benefit you and others.




    Sent from mobile using Tapatalk
    Jason Silvernail DPT, DSc, FAAOMPT
    Board-Certified in Orthopedic Physical Therapy
    Fellowship-Trained in Orthopedic Manual Therapy

    Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist


    The views expressed in this entry are those of the author alone and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the US Government.

  • #2
    I think my recent exchange with a certain chiro, who shall remain nameless, prompted this thread from Jason. I don't think it was a total waste of time, though, because I was able to once again sharpen my systematic review appraisal skills and hopefully advance the understanding of a few colleagues. However, at a certain point the inane and obtuse argumentation reaches a point of diminishing returns. I haven't engaged with this particular piece of work in a while, so maybe I thought he might have grown up a little bit.

    Then I remembered the strong correlation between sociopathy and chiropractic.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    John Ware, PT
    Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists
    "Nothing can bring a man peace but the triumph of principles." -R.W. Emerson
    “If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot
    be carried on to success.” -The Analects of Confucius, Book 13, Verse 3

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Jason!

      This often happens in the coaching world. In contentious discussions appearing to go nowhere, I often hear this seven word response:

      "What great athlete did you ever coach?"

      As I've gotten older, I more frequently inject these seven:

      "What changes if I assume you're right?"

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Ken,

        One of my favorites: justifying coaching ability with an athlete's talent and genetics....
        I may not be as smart as most people, but I'm sure as hell not as dumb....
        "The views expressed here are my own and do not reflect the views of my employer."

        Comment


        • #5
          "Those familiar with sociopathic behaviors often see commonalities with those who argue in bad faith."

          "Then I remembered the strong correlation between sociopathy and chiropractic."

          It's hard to stop seeing through the lens of pop psych once one starts. I wish I had never learned the terms antisocial, borderline, narcissistic, sociopathic.

          They just help me to dismiss people quicker. I have a hard time using these labels constructively.
          Ryan MB Hoffman, PhD
          Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner

          Comment


          • #6
            The Anatomy of a Bad Faith Argument

            Ryan,
            Let me break down for you the anatomy of a bad faith argument:

            The exchange started with the following quote, which was made after the bad faith arguer (BFA for short; not to be confused with BFF, of course) cited a systematic review on ankle joint mobilization and manipulation following lateral ankle sprain:
            …in my clinical experience and according to the BJSM review, ankle manipulation is beneficial and speeds up functional recovery.
            Struck by the extraordinary magnitude of this claim, I proceeded to critically appraise the review by Loudon et al, which, first of all, only included 3 studies of ankle manipulation. Those manipulation trials also happened to be the three lowest quality studies included in the review, and the remaining 5 studies examined the effects of ankle mobilization. In particular, the mobilization technique was limited to talocrural a-p glides of various types while the manipulation trials included TC distraction and a couple of other techniques. They also mixed acute and sub-acute/chronic populations, which was probably not a good idea since the pain mechanisms involved are likely to vary considerably once pain becomes persistent. So, right out of the gate, we have questionable evidence from this review regarding the efficacy of manipulation following lateral ankle sprain. According to my appraisal, here’s a summary of the issues with the Loudon et al SR:
            • lower quality three trials on manipulation (they ranged in score from 5-7/11),
            • lack of meta-analysis,
            • apparently high degree of heterogeneity (no MA, so can’t quantify that, have to infer from the textual descriptions of the included trials- but safe to say it was high),
            • lack of risk of bias assessment, and the inherent difficulties with blinding in manual therapy studies,
            • very broad and vague definition of “functional,” which the authors didn’t really attempt to operationally define. For instance, one study used a measure of what may marginally be considered a functional outcome, and that was stabiliometry in one of the lower quality trials on manipulation.
            The BFA remained undeterred and started to get a little snarky. He reiterated several times what he found in his “clinical experience”, which I don’t really care about despite it being part of the evidence-based “triad” (I start to throw up a little in my mouth when I hear people talk about the “triad” of evidence as if the evidence is supported equally by a 3-legged stool, placing clinical experience on the same footing with RCTs and SRs). I care about what the study actually found. He then placed the word “bias” in scare quotes, suggesting that my factual observations of heterogeneity and lack of risk of bias assessment were merely my opinions, and then huffed that if I thought the study was so bad I should write a letter to the editor. Since I don’t sit around reading SRs all day long looking for those that don’t follow Cochrane review criteria this suggestion was rather unreasonable. Also, a letter submitted so late after publication would promptly end up in the EOC’s waste basket (this study was first published online in 2013). These are merely weak debating tactics to avoid actually addressing the limitation of this particular SR- nothing more.

            He repeatedly appealed to the conclusion of the abstract, which stated:
            manual joint mobilisation diminished pain and increased dorsiflexion range of motion. For treatment of subacute/chronic lateral ankle sprains, these techniques improved ankle range-of-motion, decreased pain and improved function.
            Note that the authors explicitly did not mention “manipulation” in their conclusion, even though they clearly make this distinction in the review itself. Here’s where the “bad faith” issue starts to most blatantly rears its ugly head. The BFA uses the findings of an SR that attempts to provide a pragmatic, externally valid methodology by including trials of manipulation and mobilization following lateral ankle sprains. Despite the fact the 3 manipulation studies were of poor or marginal quality, they elected to include them in their analysis. I think this was a mistake, but I understand what they were trying to do, i.e. provide as much generalizability of the findings as possible. This is why it’s important to read SRs of manual therapy interventions closely because if you surrender internal validity for more generalizability, you end up with very tenuous results due to the high heterogeneity. I think the authors erred in this regard, and if I would have read this article a couple of years ago, I might have sent that letter.

            The BFA forged ahead. Since I didn’t address his suggestion to write a letter to the editor in my next comment (because it was a dumb idea), I was accused of “more hot air.” In an apparent attempt to expose my bias, he then went on to misrepresent my previously stated position in an entirely different thread on chiropractic manipulation being a scourge within the healthcare system.
            I get it. You think manipulation is ‘scourge’ (exact quote) and are on a fishing expedition trying to show perceived flaws on a supportive review on the effectiveness of ankle manip/mob for lateral ankle sprains? And you want to talk about bias?
            Of course, I never said that “manipulation is scourge.” You see what he’s doing here? This is dishonest. It’s bad faith argumentation. By the way, did you see how he snuck in that slash between manip and mob? Very tricky, this one…

            At this point, the BFA begins to go off the rails completely. He challenged my critique of the very broad definition of “functional” in this study, which, as I mentioned, included in one of the studies a measure of proprioception called “stabilometry.” (Going back now, I see that one of the higher quality trials investigating TC mobs- NOT manipulation- measured gait speed immediately following the intervention and found that the mob group improved their walking speed more than the control group who only got RICE). I stated that “most PTs” use validated patient-centered outcomes assessment tools and that this definition of “functional” was not clinically applicable. A normal, non-BFA would at this point make an argument of how proprioception translates into function, which requires actual thinking and reason and perhaps citing some evidence in support of one’s position. No, that’s not what BFAs do. BFAs shift the focus of the debate onto their opponent’s motives and character, which is precisely what he proceeded to do. He asserted that I must be one of those “who apparently possesses more skill, qualifications and expertise than the editorial board at BJSM.” Yeah, that’s exactly what I’m trying to do- elevate myself to the position of “Grand Poo-Bah Over All Manual Therapy Research.” I wouldn’t dare pretend- as a licensed professional healthcare provider with a post-graduate degree- that I’m able to critically appraise a scientific study all by myself. How presumptuous! He then asked me to provide a reference for my “rampant speculation” that most PTs use patient-centered outcomes tools in their clinical practice, to which I responded that if you don’t use validated outcomes tools in PT, you don’t get paid. Safe to say, most- if not virtually all- PTs use these tools. He remained adamantly obtuse by changing the subject to an entirely different study. I didn’t take that bait since he had not addressed a single substantive point that I had made regarding the Loudon et al review. Not one point of fact did he ever attempt to refute. It was all about me and my bias against manipulation, chiropractors, living in the “echo chamber” of SomaSimple, blah, blah, blah…

            This is where I should have just departed this very bizarre and increasingly unproductive conversation. As I said above, I’m glad I had the opportunity to appraise the Loudon review. I think that particular review is illustrative of the intransigent confusion that has beset PT over the last several decades as we have vainly attempted to apply dated and inaccurate biomechanical models, along with the methods that have derived from them, to our slowly evolving understanding of how pain affects movement. Ever so slow…

            This gem pretty much sums up the BFA’s profound confusion (to use a charitable term to describe his state of mind):
            When an intervention shows benefit beyond natural history, it is deemed to accelerate recovery (beyond natural history).
            The mind-numbing tautology aside, just because an intervention (in an SR with all the issues bulleted above) may show some benefit in the short term, this does NOT mean that the intervention “speeds recovery.“ "Recovery” means a return to prior level of function or, at the very least, a certain benchmark that compares prior level of function to that following treatment. That was NOT determined in any of these trials in such a way that the average therapist would use clinically. The longest term follow up was 1 month- and that was the low quality manipulation trial that assessed proprioception with stabilometry. I've sprained my ankles several times, and I can assure you that I was by no measure "recovered" in a month.

            Finally, after twice using the cutesy little term “ASSumption” in reference to some points that I had made, clearly implying that I’m the “ASS”, I called him on his ad hominem and said I was done talking to him directly in the thread since he had resorted to name-calling. His blatantly dishonest and juvenile response was to claim that I called him “ignorant.” Here’s the context of when I used to the term “ignorant” in that discussion:
            I realize that [the BFA] is not a PT [he’s a chiro, go figure], which might explain why he's ignorant of the widely implemented reimbursement rules requiring PTs to use validated, patient-centered functional outcome instruments to document patient recovery. I feel very confident when I say that "most" PTs use these regularly in clinical practice, otherwise they won't get paid. I don't use stabilometry to document functional recovery after ankle sprain, and I'm not aware of any research on its psychometric properties.
            Yeah, I called him “ignorant.”

            So, Ryan, you be the judge. And if you’re so inclined, feel free to not “dismiss” this guy on social media. That’s your call. Good luck. You'll need it.
            Last edited by John W; 14-02-2016, 11:33 PM.
            John Ware, PT
            Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists
            "Nothing can bring a man peace but the triumph of principles." -R.W. Emerson
            “If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot
            be carried on to success.” -The Analects of Confucius, Book 13, Verse 3

            Comment


            • #7
              Never Complain, Never Explain
              I agree with about 90% of this.
              http://www.artofmanliness.com/2016/0...never-explain/

              "When someone is clearly off their rocker, it’s easy to ignore them as really out there. And when someone has something critical but intelligent to say, engaging them can actually be interesting and instructive. It’s the people who greatly distort who you are/what you did/what you said, but mix together sensible sounding discourse with nuggets of crazy, who prove the most irresistible. They almost sound like someone you can have a reasonable discussion with; it almost seems like you could explain to them why they’re objectively off the mark. But as it invariably turns out (and this is a lesson I have to learn over and over!), if someone’s mindset/mentality is such that they’re able to grossly misinterpret something, no amount of explanation — no matter how thorough and well-reasoned — is going to change their mind. Quite to the contrary — they’ll simply dig in their heels all the more!"


              Sent from mobile using Tapatalk
              Jason Silvernail DPT, DSc, FAAOMPT
              Board-Certified in Orthopedic Physical Therapy
              Fellowship-Trained in Orthopedic Manual Therapy

              Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist


              The views expressed in this entry are those of the author alone and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the US Government.

              Comment


              • #8
                Jason,

                Thanks for this. Belief begets certainty, which makes it extremely difficult to discuss anything.
                Barrett L. Dorko

                Comment


                • #9
                  TLDR...just kidding[emoji12], that was good.


                  Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
                  John Ware, PT
                  Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists
                  "Nothing can bring a man peace but the triumph of principles." -R.W. Emerson
                  “If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot
                  be carried on to success.” -The Analects of Confucius, Book 13, Verse 3

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Wow, John, it sounds like you wrestled with the proverbial pig! Thanks for detailing that episode. Thanks for fighting the good fight.

                    My point (I suppose) was simply that labelling is a tactic of BF arguers. I personally am capable of slipping into this pattern. So I've tried to shift my mental environment away from the pop psych labels.

                    Obviously I would like to help evidence-based (or at minimum, naturalistic) MTs stand on their own feet. And I think SS is a good incubator for strategy/tactics to this end.

                    One excellent strategy is to avoid wrestling with proverbial pigs, hence this thread. I think labelling is also a good tactic to avoid.
                    Ryan MB Hoffman, PhD
                    Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Labeling is a good tactic to avoid if it serves to reinforce partisanship and the accompanying bad reasoning. Labeling is helpful if it's an accurate description of demonstrated behavior as judged by an objective standard.

                      I like Nick Tumminello's guideline for explanations: make one good faith effort at clarifying what you said and then exit the convo as further explanations are not likely to be useful.


                      Sent from mobile using Tapatalk
                      Jason Silvernail DPT, DSc, FAAOMPT
                      Board-Certified in Orthopedic Physical Therapy
                      Fellowship-Trained in Orthopedic Manual Therapy

                      Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist


                      The views expressed in this entry are those of the author alone and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the US Government.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        "Then I remembered the strong correlation between sociopathy and chiropractic."

                        "Labeling is helpful if it's an accurate description of demonstrated behavior as judged by an objective standard."

                        So we're going to apply an objective standard of sociopathy to apply to chiropractic and not to PT? That's a tall order in my opinion.
                        Ryan MB Hoffman, PhD
                        Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Subjective standard. Correlation is patternicity. Yeah, it's a repetitive pattern.
                          Diane
                          www.dermoneuromodulation.com
                          SensibleSolutionsPhysiotherapy
                          HumanAntiGravitySuit blog
                          Neurotonics PT Teamblog
                          Canadian Physiotherapy Pain Science Division (Archived newsletters, paincasts)
                          Canadian Physiotherapy Association Pain Science Division Facebook page
                          @PainPhysiosCan
                          WCPT PhysiotherapyPainNetwork on Facebook
                          @WCPTPTPN
                          Neuroscience and Pain Science for Manual PTs Facebook page

                          @dfjpt
                          SomaSimple on Facebook
                          @somasimple

                          "Rene Descartes was very very smart, but as it turned out, he was wrong." ~Lorimer Moseley

                          “Comment is free, but the facts are sacred.” ~Charles Prestwich Scott, nephew of founder and editor (1872-1929) of The Guardian , in a 1921 Centenary editorial

                          “If you make people think they're thinking, they'll love you, but if you really make them think, they'll hate you." ~Don Marquis

                          "In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists" ~Roland Barth

                          "Doubt is not a pleasant mental state, but certainty is a ridiculous one."~Voltaire

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There really is some truth to this....
                            Attached Files

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Ryan,
                              What category would "proverbial pig" fall in?

                              This isn't a label? It may not be "pop psych", but it nonetheless implies a categorical description of a certain type of person who behaves in predictable ways- you know, like a pig.

                              Labels are heuristics. Some are useful, some aren't.


                              Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
                              John Ware, PT
                              Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists
                              "Nothing can bring a man peace but the triumph of principles." -R.W. Emerson
                              “If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot
                              be carried on to success.” -The Analects of Confucius, Book 13, Verse 3

                              Comment

                              Previously entered content was automatically saved. Restore or Discard.
                              Auto-Saved
                              x
                              Insert: Thumbnail Small Medium Large Fullsize Remove  
                              x
                              x

                              Please enter the six letters or digits that appear in the image below.

                              Registration Image Refresh Image
                              Working...
                              X