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Opposing views

since synthesis is "a process which combines together two or more pre-existing elements resulting in the formation of something new"[1], i doubt it can be always applied to "opposing views and proposals". i believe they must be complementary to be combined. rustahm 10:59, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Then maybe it should say "seemingly opposing views." My experience has been that when there are two camps who have irreconcilable differences, usually their "opposing views" are merely a lack of a greater viewpoint. Stepping back a little and looking with a broader perspective shows that they aren't really opposite at all.
My favorite example is the abortion debate in the U.S., where one side is "pro-life" (i.e, anti-abortion) and the other is "pro-choice" (i.e., anti-government-control). This is a totally false dichotomy. Almost nobody in the U.S. is actually in favor of abortion, and almost nobody in the U.S. is in favor of totalitarianism. The sometimes-violent struggle between these two sides is brought on by politicians who benefit from setting people against each other. Stepping back a little and trying to accommodate both sides can lead one to come up with numerous solutions to this supposedly intractable debate.— Ed Pastore 16:59, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Suggest reviewing current incarnation to assess whether discussion above has been reconciled and can be marked closed. Marcos 01:16, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Good point - "seemingly opposing views" may often have an elegant solution that encompasses both sides' fundamental desires. However, surely there are those occasional fundamentally opposing views. It may be the case that neither side is willing to give in to the other side but either view is better for the community than nothing. In this case, the community would lose.

My solution for this is at pangaia: use a probability algorithm to display every contribution until the best "settle-in" from natural selection. Marcos 01:19, 1 January 2011 (EST)

This system also seems to assume that both sides have a desire to cooperate because neither can accomplish its goals without synthesis. It seems far too common that a change for the good of the community as a whole will negatively impact some group within the community. That group would have no impetus to cooperate (even if it would actually be possible to come to a synthesis). It will simply hold out as a dissenting view and accomplish its goal of no change by default.

The solution to these kinds of problems is to "bump them up" to the next higher realm that is held in common by both parties until synthesis is reached, or, when time is pressing, to use the above-mentioned method in some form. Marcos 01:19, 1 January 2011 (EST)