My Opinion on My Opinion

Vance

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My opinion is free and worth what you pay for it.

It is my observation that there are very few facts discussed on the Rotary Wing Forum.

People take the sum of their flight experience and their interaction with the

FAA and add it to what they have read and offer an opinion to help someone who may have less experience or done less reading.

I try to stay current on the Federal Aviation Regulations and the most current advisory circulars and yet anything I might write even quoting the FAR directly is simply my opinion and there is a room full of lawyers who may interpret the regulations differently.

For example; if someone posts that someone with a Sport Pilot, Gyroplane rating may legally fly a gyroplane at night with the appropriate equipment; I will offer a divergent opinion. Even if I quote the regulation it is still my interpretation of the regulation and is still just my opinion.

As a flight instructor I am cautious about making blanket statements because people may be using the language differently. One pilot’s push over may be another pilot’s reducing back pressure to increase indicated airspeed. I offer my opinion that an aggressive lowering of the nose in a low g situation may not be best practice in most gyroplanes.

The more I learn about gyroplanes the fewer absolutes I have. When someone asks about horizontal stabilizers; in my opinion the total gyroplane system is what is important rather than a single part of the system. I have flown gyroplanes that flew worse for me with a horizontal stabilizer than without. I offer my opinion based on my experience.
 

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Doug Riley

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It's cautious and wise to identify interpretations of regs, and interpretations of one's experiences, as opinions. Your personal ethics are matters of opinion, too.

Still, I do worry that our culture is well on the way to believing that there are no data, only opinions. ("It's just your OPINION that the sun rose in the east this morning...")

Worse, many have come to believe that all such "opinions" are equally valid. (This is a perversion of our Constitution's principle that all of us are CREATED equal. The Founding Fathers were talking about legal justice, not the use/nonuse of one's brains. Sure, Joe has a right to be stupid and illogical, but this right doesn't alter the underlying stupidity.) That kind of thinking, once it gets out of hand, leaves us in a science-free la-la land.

Aircraft fly on science. They often crash on the denial of science.

So I'll risk being over-general when stating observations such as adding a horizontal stabilizer aft of the CM always moves a craft closer to dynamic stability.
 

Brian Jackson

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...Worse, many have come to believe that all such "opinions" are equally valid.
Indeed. It saddens me that microphones and soap boxes are so freely given in the phony attempt to seem "fair and balanced." So we end up muddying the waters by giving equal airtime to anti-vaxxers, anti-maskers, 911 truthers, flat Earthers... Trump. The list is endless. Opinions are malleable but data tends to be hard.
 

Doug Riley

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Well, the mess in our news-distribution system and politics probably is traceable to the blurring of commercial entertainment and news that began decades ago. Entertainers see it as their job to be exciting: "Truth? Not my department! Give me ratings!"

In our little rotorcraft neighborhood, though, our lives depend on an ability to acknowledge universal facts, and to tease out mere opinions.

Igor Bensen wrote a great editorial on this topic in the PRA mag many years ago. He pointed out that, in engineering at least, one way to tell a fact from an opinion is that an engineering fact can be stated in mathematical terms.
 

Brian Jackson

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Regarding facts vs. opinion, I've always liked the phrase:
"Reality is that which continues to exist after you've stopped believing in it."
I'm not sure whom to credit for that, but it's stuck with me.
 

Vance

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Do you think it is "fair and balanced"
My opinions are not intended to be fair and balanced Jeff Tipton.

I don't believe in the concept of fair and I don't know what balanced is.

I look forward to seeing you in a week at Mentone.
 

Vance

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Well, the mess in our news-distribution system and politics probably is traceable to the blurring of commercial entertainment and news that began decades ago. Entertainers see it as their job to be exciting: "Truth? Not my department! Give me ratings!"

In our little rotorcraft neighborhood, though, our lives depend on an ability to acknowledge universal facts, and to tease out mere opinions.

Igor Bensen wrote a great editorial on this topic in the PRA mag many years ago. He pointed out that, in engineering at least, one way to tell a fact from an opinion is that an engineering fact can be stated in mathematical terms.
I do not find joy in politics and I have no affection for the "news".

None of my opinions can be stated in mathematical terms Doug Riley.

My opinions also change from time to time.
 
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Vance

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“There are no facts, only interpretations.” -Friedrich Nietzsche (German philosopher)
I am not a Friedrich Nietzsche enthusiast.

I find too much Nietzsche depressing.

I like Plato because in my opinion he holds happiness in high regard.
 

PW_Plack

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It saddens me that microphones and soap boxes are so freely given in the phony attempt to seem "fair and balanced."
The birth of the channel whose slogan you quote is a predictable reaction to the much more subtle manipulation of media, usually in the opposite political direction, over decades before. As the WWII generation of newscasters aged out and retired, they were gradually replaced by "journalists" who got into the field to change the world. There are few things more dangerous to our freedom than journalists who let their personal biases color objective reporting.

The internet was hailed as an escape from the "gatekeepers" of news. Now, many people can't discern truth among the noise, and want the gatekeepers back. Bias and ratings have always been part of the news business, but we never used to think much about it. Now, we must try to anticipate the biases of any news source we consume, and credibility can vary by topic.

There is no network or publisher I trust as credible on every subject any more. They're all strapped for revenue, and objectivity and ethics are suffering. The biggest effect I see is in reporting of Covid-19 stats. As long as this thing remains a crisis, it allows news departments to plan tomorrow's newscasts today, which saves lots of effort, time and money, and allows politicians to exercise power which exceeds their statutory authority.
 

C. Beaty

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C. Beaty said:
“There are no facts, only interpretations.” -Friedrich Nietzsche (German philosopher)
I am not a Friedrich Nietzsche enthusiast.
I find too much Nietzsche depressing.
Vance, when you say; “In my opinion, water flows downhill” indicates to me that you are in fact a disciple of Nietzsche.
-Perhaps you’re not consciously aware of your Nietzsche-like interpretations.
 
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Vance

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Downhill is all about perspective.

I have been in fun houses where water appeared to be flowing uphill.
 

Philbennett

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Downhill is all about perspective.
unless the altimeter is unwinding? The theorising maybe a lovely way to burn time over a beer and a smoke but if you're a flight instructor teaching a basic flying course students need simple processes that are unambiguous. If indeed that was the point of this increasingly indulgent post.
 

C. Beaty

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Only GPS provides absolute altitude. Altitude based on barometric pressure proves Nietzsche was correct.
 

Vance

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unless the altimeter is unwinding? The theorising maybe a lovely way to burn time over a beer and a smoke but if you're a flight instructor teaching a basic flying course students need simple processes that are unambiguous. If indeed that was the point of this increasingly indulgent post.
For many the forum “off topic” would be sufficiently unambiguous.

The title is the second chance at communication.

I feel most readers with the big picture recognize this thread as a response to a critique of my communication on the Rotary Wing Forum.

In my opinion flight instruction is about the communication of concepts.

It is my observation that a ground perspective is often very different than a pilot’s perspective and it is my job as a flight instructor to move toward an understanding of the concepts.

I have found that communication is improved if I understand the client’s perspective and background.

I teach that there is more than one way to do nearly everything in aviation and try to make a case for what I perceive to be best practice.

I would like to have the client understand the concepts so they have options rather than memorize unambiguous words and procedures.

I feel this is an important part of scenario based flight instruction.

I have not found value in quibbling about semantics.
 

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JEFF TIPTON

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Communications is important, especially when talking about the same item.

Decades ago my instructor was instructing a french student, the student was was instructed to power back for the landing. The student applied full power. To the Frenchman to power back meant to "apply full power:. After landing they pent some time on terminology and meaning.

Another instructor was discussing the proper way way for the student to procedd from downwind to base and the setup. After two hours of arguing one decided to demonstrate what he was discussing. It turns out that they were both saying the same thing but in a diffrent way.
 
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