cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
This is the definition for intellectual dishonesty found on Wikipedia:
Intellectual dishonesty is dishonesty in performing intellectual activities like thought or communication. Examples are:
- the advocacy of a position which the advocate knows or believes to be false or misleading
- the advocacy of a position which the advocate does not know to be true, and has not performed rigorous due diligence to ensure the truthfulness of the position
- the conscious omission of aspects of the truth known or believed to be relevant in the particular context.
We are, I believe, surrounded by intellectual dishonesty, especially in matters political. We find it difficult to believe what is being said no matter from which side of the aisle it might’ve originated.
Our mainstream media engages in intellectual dishonesty when it poses as the supporter of a person’s political agenda because it is the agenda of that media outlet. Too often one side in the political argument receives a pass when the opponent is excoriated for his or her statement or position.
The process has begun for the coming Congress. On the one hand, there are those who are already taking the Republicans to task while simultaneously extolling the abilities of our President to move to the center. The typical liberal news outlets can be seen engaging in this form of intellectual dishonesty on a regular basis.
On the other side are the conservative outlets that are seen by the liberals as parroting the political line as fed by the Republican Party and the Tea Party.
The flip flops have already begun amongst those who would run for the presidency against President Obama. Previous statements of position are being adroitly, in some cases, put behind the candidate through statements or revisions. And, the President is artfully altering his positions to accommodate the apparent shifts in public opinion.
There are many other forms of intellectual dishonesty. How do we square the physicians who are paid for their statements favoring a particular new product? Are they being honest or dishonest in those position statements?
What about those in religion who seemingly find things in the bible that defy teachings over the centuries? Are they being intellectually dishonest, or have they finally unlocked the truth?
In the midst of this array of intellectual dishonesty are we, who struggle to find the truth and who struggle to find those in whom we can place our hopes. It is a terrible thing when our very basis for belief can be brought into question due to intellectual dishonesty.
All we each can do is to avoid such intellectual dishonesty, as best we are able, in our own communication and our own critical thinking. If we remain aware of the phrase 'intellectual dishonesty', maybe we can be better stewards of the truth. If we can be better stewards of the truth, then maybe we can also be better discerners of intellectual dishonesty when it is encountered in our daily lives.