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« : April 02, 2012, 08:01:28 PM »

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/philosophicalfragments/2012/03/30/want-to-end-rapid-partisanship-reform-american-academia/

Download the PDF of the study linked in the article.


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« #1 : April 02, 2012, 08:11:54 PM »

a sample:

...The results were striking.  As Kristof puts it: “Moderates and conservatives were adept at guessing how liberals would answer questions. Liberals, especially those who described themselves as ‘very liberal,’ were least able to put themselves in the minds of their adversaries and guess how conservatives would answer.”  Tom Chivers at the Telegraph goes on to say that the “very liberal” were “especially bad at guessing what conservatives would say about issues of care or fairness. For example, most thought that conservatives would disagree with statements like ‘One of the worst things a person could do is hurt a defenceless animal’ or ‘Justice is the most important requirement for a society.’”

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« #2 : April 02, 2012, 08:42:02 PM »

It would explain a lot if it is correct.

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« #3 : April 02, 2012, 08:45:11 PM »

Even though I actually agree that there is hyperpartisanship these days, did you know that many political historians would disagree, at least to the extent that it is claimed to be worse now then in the past?

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« #4 : April 02, 2012, 09:31:45 PM »

do you mean worse in the past than it is now?

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« #5 : April 02, 2012, 09:43:59 PM »

Interesting read, and it's hard to argue with the findings, but I think it's a leap to suggest that the sole reason for uncivil partisan discourse is because liberals just don't understand conservatives. If conservatives have a better understanding of liberals, and they are no less partisan than liberals, then how would a better liberal understanding of conservatives lead to such a conclusion?

There are also more logical explanations for the partisan shift in academia other than a premeditated liberal takeover. One thing that comes to mind is that the Republican party has shifted towards the right so much in recent years, that now someone who would have voted for Richard Nixon in the 70's would be hard pressed to find a similar candidate that they could support in the current field.


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« #6 : April 02, 2012, 09:44:21 PM »

Even though I actually agree that there is hyperpartisanship these days, did you know that many political historians would disagree, at least to the extent that it is claimed to be worse now then in the past?

I would agree with you on that to some extent, but it is more saturated now.  There have always been hardcore elements on the extremes but I think it is pretty much everyone now.  I don't think there are many true moderates now,

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« #7 : April 02, 2012, 09:50:53 PM »

Interesting read, and it's hard to argue with the findings, but I think it's a leap to suggest that the sole reason for uncivil partisan discourse is because liberals just don't understand conservatives. If conservatives have a better understanding of liberals, and they are no less partisan than liberals, then how would a better liberal understanding of conservatives lead to such a conclusion?

There are also more logical explanations for the partisan shift in academia other than a premeditated liberal takeover. One thing that comes to mind is that the Republican party has shifted towards the right so much in recent years, that now someone who would have voted for Richard Nixon in the 70's would be hard pressed to find a similar candidate that they could support in the current field.

It's not a sole cause, but a big part of it.  There's an old saying, Liberals think conservatives are evil, conservatives just think liberals are wrong" and it's pretty accurate.  There is MUCH more bile and venom on the left.  And I'm not sure where liberals come up with this "Conservatives moved more right" junk.  They've moved more toward a libertarian point  more than anything else.  It just seems like they moved because liberals are essentially going full on communist now.  And with cpontrol of the press they can make even the most mundane opinions seem bigoted.

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« #8 : April 02, 2012, 10:22:19 PM »

Interesting read, and it's hard to argue with the findings, but I think it's a leap to suggest that the sole reason for uncivil partisan discourse is because liberals just don't understand conservatives. If conservatives have a better understanding of liberals, and they are no less partisan than liberals, then how would a better liberal understanding of conservatives lead to such a conclusion?

There are also more logical explanations for the partisan shift in academia other than a premeditated liberal takeover. One thing that comes to mind is that the Republican party has shifted towards the right so much in recent years, that now someone who would have voted for Richard Nixon in the 70's would be hard pressed to find a similar candidate that they could support in the current field.

It's not a sole cause, but a big part of it.  There's an old saying, Liberals think conservatives are evil, conservatives just think liberals are wrong" and it's pretty accurate.  There is MUCH more bile and venom on the left.  And I'm not sure where liberals come up with this "Conservatives moved more right" junk.  They've moved more toward a libertarian point  more than anything else.  It just seems like they moved because liberals are essentially going full on communist now.  And with cpontrol of the press they can make even the most mundane opinions seem bigoted.

I would suggest listening to some Rush Limbaugh if you really want to hear some bile and venom. I think it's a bit disingenuous to suggest that liberals are primarily to blame for this partisan divide. The over the top rhetoric and demonization of positions exist on both sides. For example, you just accused liberals of going full on communist. I know a lot of liberals, and I don't know any communists.

As to conservatives not moving further to the right, if your statement were true, why is Ron Paul never a serious candidate? The truth is that the libertarian wing of the Republican party is still in the minority. The party has significantly moved to the right from where it used to be, even as recently as the 90's. If you looked at some of the legislation proposed by Nixon or Eisenhower, both would be labeled unelectable RINO's were they running today.


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« #9 : April 02, 2012, 10:30:02 PM »

do you mean worse in the past than it is now?

yes, I think that is the historian's perspective, Hard for me to imagine, frankly

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« #10 : April 02, 2012, 11:07:45 PM »

There are probably many explanations but one obvious reason is the rise of party politics.  Moderates are marginalized instead of celebrated because the party is so essential to election/re-election

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« #11 : April 03, 2012, 02:51:41 AM »

Interesting read, and it's hard to argue with the findings, but I think it's a leap to suggest that the sole reason for uncivil partisan discourse is because liberals just don't understand conservatives. If conservatives have a better understanding of liberals, and they are no less partisan than liberals, then how would a better liberal understanding of conservatives lead to such a conclusion?

There are also more logical explanations for the partisan shift in academia other than a premeditated liberal takeover. One thing that comes to mind is that the Republican party has shifted towards the right so much in recent years, that now someone who would have voted for Richard Nixon in the 70's would be hard pressed to find a similar candidate that they could support in the current field.

It's not a sole cause, but a big part of it.  There's an old saying, Liberals think conservatives are evil, conservatives just think liberals are wrong" and it's pretty accurate.  There is MUCH more bile and venom on the left.  And I'm not sure where liberals come up with this "Conservatives moved more right" junk.  They've moved more toward a libertarian point  more than anything else.  It just seems like they moved because liberals are essentially going full on communist now.  And with control of the press they can make even the most mundane opinions seem bigoted.

I would suggest listening to some Rush Limbaugh if you really want to hear some bile and venom. I think it's a bit disingenuous to suggest that liberals are primarily to blame for this partisan divide. The over the top rhetoric and demonization of positions exist on both sides. For example, you just accused liberals of going full on communist. I know a lot of liberals, and I don't know any communists.  As to conservatives not moving further to the right, if your statement were true, why is Ron Paul never a serious candidate? The truth is that the libertarian wing of the Republican party is still in the minority. The party has significantly moved to the right from where it used to be, even as recently as the 90's. If you looked at some of the legislation proposed by Nixon or Eisenhower, both would be labeled unelectable RINO's were they running today.

I know it's probably a waste of my time, as you appear to be exactly the person this article is about, but I'm going to take the time to go over your responses and try to explain some things where you do what is talked about there. 

In another thread today (non-political) I used the phrase "Intentionally obtuse".  Conservatives/anyone not liberal often simply give up trying to explain themselves to liberals because they seem to deliberately misinterpret what you say to them.  The point of the article was a charitable explanation as to why this happens; that you aren't deliberately twisting things, but are predisposed and pre-programmed to not understand the arguments made to you, to immediately assume the worst possible interpretation.  One good example of this would be the whole Palin-Fey "I can see Russia" thing.  To liberals this was instant proof of her stupidity, rather than a figure of speech indicating that it was a topic that was a bigger issue for Alaska than perhaps Nebraska as they were on the "front lines" so to speak.  Or how so many liberals insinuated she caused the Giffords shooting because she had that district "targeted" that district.  I wonder if Walt Disney wants to kill little girls who are the "Target" audience for their princess films.

As to your responses:
I think it's a leap to suggest that the sole reason for uncivil partisan discourse is because liberals just don't understand conservatives
This is from the first sentence of your response and it is either intentionally misinterpreting or is evidence of how the article is right, that you can't accept that someone arguing a "conservative" thought could have a rational response.  You set up a strawman and proceed to argue with it.  The article in NO WAY stated that this was the sole reason for the partisanship upswing.  But that's the point you assume it was making in your response.  Intentional or accidental?  Can't say for sure, but it happens with amazing frequency when liberals respond to anyone not parroting their points. 

If conservatives have a better understanding of liberals, and they are no less partisan than liberals, then how would a better liberal understanding of conservatives lead to such a conclusion?
Another part you pull from thin air.  You state as a fact that conservatives are "no less partisan" and then build a logical conclusion out of your own assertion.  I would respond that IMO conservatives ARE actually less partisan.  Not immune to partisanship, as I'm sure would be your reflexive strawman interpretation of this response, but LESS.  And why do I think you would strawman that?  It shows in your later response, you'll see.


There are also more logical explanations for the partisan shift in academia other than a premeditated liberal takeover
While I can actually see why you would think the author is declaring a planned takeover, the reality on the general not-liberal thought on this is that it wasn't completely that. Bu tof course you still assume the worst.  And while there actually is evidence that there was some deliberate maneuvering towards that end in the early days, much of it also had to do with personal preference.  But either way it has become a fact, and is now a self-perpetuating cycle that deliberately pushes any non-liberals away from education.  This is the main point of that topic in the article, which you conveniently avoid. 

From the article :
"They may know the conservative argument superficially, and they are armed with their own objections, but they are ignorant of how conservatives would respond to their objections. This is worse than knowing nothing at all, as it gives liberals the false impression that they have addressed and defeated conservatism."

And that is just what you did -- you rebutted a small portion of a larger argument and declared victory over the whole.

One thing that comes to mind is that the Republican party has shifted towards the right so much in recent years, that now someone who would have voted for Richard Nixon in the 70's would be hard pressed to find a similar candidate that they could support in the current field.

This is another standard liberal trope that keeps coming up, and I see no legs to it.  While Nixon was more of a "Big-Government" guy, the mid 20th century was a unique time and it is not unusual for conservatives to favor a strong response to threats, it's part of why the nation tends to prefer republicans in times of threat as they are generally favoring a stronger position as opposed to conciliatory or submissive.  In times considered "emergency", as the Cold War certainly qualified as, yes, a strong government is accepted by the right. But on the whole, Big government republicans are more of an aberration than the rule.  And the "socially" conservative positions haven't gone rightward, they've moved dramatically "leftward".  An example of this would be gay rights, the right as a whole is much more open to these than in the past.

I would suggest listening to some Rush Limbaugh if you really want to hear some bile and venom
I'm not a Rush listener, although I have heard his show in the past.  He definitely is a bit over the top.  I've tried to explain my position on his as this:  He's a guy who get the right idea, runs with it and makes sense, but then keeps running and goes a step or two too far into the place where it doesn't work.  JMHO on Rush.  But Rush (and another favorite liberal demon FOX) is/are just islands in a sea of liberal bile.  Olberman, Maher, the mass media accusations of Palin suborning Giffords' shooting, the lies about spitting and racist remarks on the "Kill the bill" liberal photo-op setup, on and on.  There is one Rush, and one fox, versus PBS, NBC, CBA, ABC, CNN, BBC, MSNBC, ALL of Hollywood, essentially ever major print paper and magazine, and I'm sure I'm missing a bunch.  Let's also talk about the response to the recent "Slit" remarks.  Yes, not appropriate by Rush at all.  Media Matters has bragged they had a planned action plan for just this mistake by him since 2009.  Think about that.  3 years before they can implement it.  Maybe he's not as venomous as people portray?  What was the response from libs when Maher called Palin a cu** ?

I think it's a bit disingenuous to suggest that liberals are primarily to blame for this partisan divide. The over the top rhetoric and demonization of positions exist on both sides.
Remember where I predicted your strawman above?  This is why.  I NEVER said it didn't exist on both sides.  But again you imply I did and proceed to beat up a strawman.  Don't you feel big and tough.  As noted in the paragraph above, there is much more bile from more sources coming from the left.  Even if the right wanted to, they don't have enough of a media presence to match the venom-count of the left.  Take an honest look at it and you'll see it.  Most of what liberals call "hate speech" or "uncivil discourse" is just people disagreeing with them, because the "Hate" when you do that.

For example, you just accused liberals of going full on communist. I know a lot of liberals, and I don't know any communists.

Again you decide to take the low road and read this as an insult rather that try and understand what I was saying.  First though, let me show you a couple of things.  From the article again: '
Liberals in general get their views of “conservatism” second-hand through liberal caricatures, and this has made them better able to demonize conservatives than understand them.

Essentially what you are accusing me of there, "demonizing".  For a real example though, lets look at this:
I just hope you guys don't all become doomsday preppers (although I know some of you did the day the black man won the white house).

This is the THIRD response in DBucs' thread http://www.pewterreport.com/Boards/index.php/topic,1293693.0.html

This is standard liberal instant caricaturization of any differing viewpoint.  On the other hand, I said "ESSENTIALLY gone full on communist".  Communism is a real and existing political and economic ideology.  There is no "demonizing" in saying someone holds that viewpoint or viewpoints which are ESSENTIALLY the same.  Communism economically focuses on distribution of wealth rather than creation of it, that it is more important that everyone gets their "fair share" rather than accepting some inequality so that in the end everyone gets more.  The current assaults by liberals on "Bankers" "the rich" "corporations" "businessmen" and the "failures of capitalism" are pretty much 100% in line with the USSR propaganda book.  Another basic tenet of communism is a powerful, essentially all powerful, central government running things for our own good.  If you can't see the parallels between that and the ever increasing nanny state, Obamacare, EPA "regulating" CO2, then I can't help you.  Fact is liberals are pushing ever larger government both in scope and authority. Of course your friends don't call themselves communist.  But they most likely DO do hold essentially the same viewpoints on a lot of key matters. 

As to conservatives not moving further to the right, if your statement were true, why is Ron Paul never a serious candidate?
This one is downright bizarre.  Ron Paul? Really?  That is your rebuttal to my statement?  You seriously know nothing about the right.  Another perfect example of how the article is right.  First, saying MORE libertarian is not the same as saying "Has become a purist hardcore libertarian" party.  Second, you are really missing some things about Paul.  First, his lack of "serious candidate" status comes from a few different places.  First he has some very odd political positions, like his foreign policy and fed stances which are not accepted among the right in general.  Second, he comes off as a bit of a nutter in a tinfoil-hatter kind of way, which has not much to do with small government essentials of libertarianism.  Third, the media has well and thoroughly "Palin'ed" him so that everyone knows he couldn't survive a general election.  But one thing you do miss is he is getting MUCH more influential even as he is certainly non-viable in an election, as he is drawing lots of younger voters. 

The truth is that the libertarian wing of the Republican party is still in the minority.
As bizarre as the last one was, this really makes me boggle.  Have you been living under a rock the last three years?  There has not been a stronger libertarian movement in the right since 1773.  It's called the Tea Party.  That's the libertarian wing of the right, advocating a small government and avoiding to it's best any "social" issues.

The party has significantly moved to the right from where it used to be, even as recently as the 90's. If you looked at some of the legislation proposed by Nixon or Eisenhower, both would be labeled unelectable RINO's were they running today

Any semblance of logical cohesion you had breaks down here.  You make the unsubstantiated claim (again) that the party moved to the right even "Compared to the 90's", and then proceed to try and back that up saying that we wouldn't elect those well known 1990's politicians Dwight EISENHOWER and Richard NIXON ????? On what planet is that logical???



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« #12 : April 03, 2012, 09:44:26 AM »


*serious pwnage*

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« #13 : April 03, 2012, 09:56:11 AM »

There are also more logical explanations for the partisan shift in academia other than a premeditated liberal takeover
While I can actually see why you would think the author is declaring a planned takeover, the reality on the general not-liberal thought on this is that it wasn't completely that. Bu tof course you still assume the worst.  And while there actually is evidence that there was some deliberate maneuvering towards that end in the early days, much of it also had to do with personal preference.  But either way it has become a fact, and is now a self-perpetuating cycle that deliberately pushes any non-liberals away from education.  This is the main point of that topic in the article, which you conveniently avoid. 

This statement makes no sense. You can see how I would think the author was asserting this, but because I'm a liberal, I falsely though he was asserting it? Here is what was said...

"The liberalization of the American educational establishment has been a colossal failure.  Liberals overtook the universities because (reasonably) they saw them as the way to shape a more progressive society in the long term."

That doesn't speak to a consorted tactical effort on the part of liberals to take over academia?  ???

As to your responses:
I think it's a leap to suggest that the sole reason for uncivil partisan discourse is because liberals just don't understand conservatives
This is from the first sentence of your response and it is either intentionally misinterpreting or is evidence of how the article is right, that you can't accept that someone arguing a "conservative" thought could have a rational response.  You set up a strawman and proceed to argue with it.  The article in NO WAY stated that this was the sole reason for the partisanship upswing.  But that's the point you assume it was making in your response.  Intentional or accidental?  Can't say for sure, but it happens with amazing frequency when liberals respond to anyone not parroting their points.

cardoc, the name of the freaking article is "Want to End Rabid Partisanship? Reform American Academia" for crying out loud. In otherwords, Academia has lead to a misunderstanding from liberals of conservatives, and this misunderstanding is the reason for the divide. My statement was not a straw man. It was a response to the entire premise of the guy's piece.

If conservatives have a better understanding of liberals, and they are no less partisan than liberals, then how would a better liberal understanding of conservatives lead to such a conclusion?
Another part you pull from thin air.  You state as a fact that conservatives are "no less partisan" and then build a logical conclusion out of your own assertion.  I would respond that IMO conservatives ARE actually less partisan.  Not immune to partisanship, as I'm sure would be your reflexive strawman interpretation of this response, but LESS.  And why do I think you would strawman that?  It shows in your later response, you'll see.

You have a congress that was elected on the sole promise to say no to every piece of legislation that the President puts forward. You have them voting against issues that have historically been non-partisan. You can make any assertion you want to, but anyone with half a brain can see that it isn't just one party that is refusing to work with the other.

I think it's a bit disingenuous to suggest that liberals are primarily to blame for this partisan divide. The over the top rhetoric and demonization of positions exist on both sides.
Remember where I predicted your strawman above?  This is why.  I NEVER said it didn't exist on both sides.  But again you imply I did and proceed to beat up a strawman.  Don't you feel big and tough.  As noted in the paragraph above, there is much more bile from more sources coming from the left.  Even if the right wanted to, they don't have enough of a media presence to match the venom-count of the left.  Take an honest look at it and you'll see it.  Most of what liberals call "hate speech" or "uncivil discourse" is just people disagreeing with them, because the "Hate" when you do that.

Dude, you have Republican presidential candidates, not media figures, but actual candidates questioning the president's legal status as an American and whether or not he is a secret Muslim. You really want to pretend that Republicans are spewing less bile than liberals?

As to conservatives not moving further to the right, if your statement were true, why is Ron Paul never a serious candidate?
This one is downright bizarre.  Ron Paul? Really?  That is your rebuttal to my statement?  You seriously know nothing about the right.  Another perfect example of how the article is right.  First, saying MORE libertarian is not the same as saying "Has become a purist hardcore libertarian" party.  Second, you are really missing some things about Paul.  First, his lack of "serious candidate" status comes from a few different places.  First he has some very odd political positions, like his foreign policy and fed stances which are not accepted among the right in general.  Second, he comes off as a bit of a nutter in a tinfoil-hatter kind of way, which has not much to do with small government essentials of libertarianism.  Third, the media has well and thoroughly "Palin'ed" him so that everyone knows he couldn't survive a general election.  But one thing you do miss is he is getting MUCH more influential even as he is certainly non-viable in an election, as he is drawing lots of younger voters. 

So we agree that libertarians make up a minority in the party. What about the majority view? You said that my statement was incorrect, and brought up a minority movement to illustrate that it was incorrect. Here's an idea, why don't you explain to me how the platforms that Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are running on are less conservative than past candidacies? Do you even remember what issues George W. Bush ran on in 2000?

The truth is that the libertarian wing of the Republican party is still in the minority.
As bizarre as the last one was, this really makes me boggle.  Have you been living under a rock the last three years?  There has not been a stronger libertarian movement in the right since 1773.  It's called the Tea Party.  That's the libertarian wing of the right, advocating a small government and avoiding to it's best any "social" issues.

If this is correct, then in your view, is the Tea Party more conservative or less conservative than the general party? The answer to this question will explain a lot, I suspect.

The party has significantly moved to the right from where it used to be, even as recently as the 90's. If you looked at some of the legislation proposed by Nixon or Eisenhower, both would be labeled unelectable RINO's were they running today

Any semblance of logical cohesion you had breaks down here.  You make the unsubstantiated claim (again) that the party moved to the right even "Compared to the 90's", and then proceed to try and back that up saying that we wouldn't elect those well known 1990's politicians Dwight EISENHOWER and Richard NIXON ????? On what planet is that logical???

I initially brought up Nixon as an example of why the author's statement was incorrect. I brought up the 90's as an example of how your statement was incorrect. Sorry for jumbling my examples, but if you need proof of the shift since the 90's, perhaps you should look at some of the legislation proposed by Bob Dole and Newt Gingrich in that decade.

On the Nixon issue,

This is another standard liberal trope that keeps coming up, and I see no legs to it.  While Nixon was more of a "Big-Government" guy, the mid 20th century was a unique time and it is not unusual for conservatives to favor a strong response to threats, it's part of why the nation tends to prefer republicans in times of threat as they are generally favoring a stronger position as opposed to conciliatory or submissive.  In times considered "emergency", as the Cold War certainly qualified as, yes, a strong government is accepted by the right. But on the whole, Big government republicans are more of an aberration than the rule.  And the "socially" conservative positions haven't gone rightward, they've moved dramatically "leftward".  An example of this would be gay rights, the right as a whole is much more open to these than in the past.

This entire segment is ridiculous. You are operating on the illusion that the conservative persona is a static one, immune to societal shifts sans a few minor exceptions. That is nonsense. The reason that conservatives in the mid 20th century shifted left is because the country as a whole had shifted left in the post-New Deal era. Nixon is viewed as a big government conservative by today's standards, not by the standards of his own time.

It's the same reason that Democrats now are far less liberal than they were in the mid-20th century. The country has shifted back to the right. Democrats and liberals are NOT marching towards communism, as you seem to believe. Bill Clinton would have been a moderate Republican had he ran in the early 70's, and Richard Nixon could easily run as a Democrat nowadays, but would have little chance even earning the nomination in a Republican primary.

As to the social issues, they have always trended leftward in American society. Conservatives moving to the left on social issues isn't the sign of a colossal trend leftward by conservatives. It's a sign of the times. No different than how the majority of Americans, both conservatives and liberals, believed that interracial marriage should remain illegal at the time it was deemed unconstitutional for it to be so in 1967, and now the predominant view on both sides are in support of that decision.


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« #14 : April 03, 2012, 09:59:48 AM »

There is MUCH more bile and venom on the left.

ROFL ... You have got to be freaking kidding me ... Limbaugh, Beck, Savage, Levin, Hannity, Coulter, et al join me in laughing at that ultimate example of hyperpartisanship.
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