Back in April 2010, I went to the Tea Party Rally in San Jose out of curiosity (it was a 1 block walk from work). There were a couple loons, but about 1/10th as many as I'm used to at rally's. Most were middle aged (or older) folks that were bipartisan fiscal conservatives - but both social liberals or conservatives (this is cali). The ones I talked to, got a lot more about economics than the majority of the bay area. (I like economics, and asked some probing questions). The media spun the story by finding the one guy that had some racist T-shirt or placard and interviewing him and pretending he was the norm. They first had to get him away from the folks with signs that said, "he's not with us"... and they ignored that the guy was a long time Democrat operative, and being a sock-puppet (a plant to make the opposition look bad).
Mr. Volcano Head and Third Point Systems Jumper), I count two more by proxy. My parents were socialites living in the U.K., when one of their neighbors went from their dinner party to his Garage, where he started his car, and killed himself. Then they moved back to the states, and the neighbor girl directly across the street decided to hang herself in the garage. While my Mom's company can be a bit of an acquired taste, that's kind of an extreme reaction, and a bit of an outlier. Sincerely, most people that met her have not felt the need to end it all immediately afterwards.
There I was, minding my own business, when I see a body fall by my window, and make a slightly wet but very loud, "smack" against the street like Gallagher mallet'ing a side of beef. Well that's not something you see/hear every day.I went down, and talked to the cops, who asked, "did she yell". And to my reply of "nope", they responded, "Good. That means a jumper... if she'd been pushed, she'd have screamed the whole way down". And that ended the investigation into the meeting of the homeless person and the sidewalk.
Everyone is biased, I'm open about mine, so that people can decide if I'm right in spite of them, or where I go wrong (if they disagree). It started in 5th grade when I learned early that the School textbooks and teachers were indoctrinating me with lies (spin). The Italian part of my family was dominant, and that was the normal operating behavior: believe your own lies (self delusion), and repeat them to others until they believe them too (it didn't help that many were in sales). Then I noticed it in movies, TV, books, and Newspapers. The more I looked into everything I was being told, sold or cajoled on, the more bullshit and bias I became aware of. So cynical skepticism (distrust of what I'm told) was ingrained early, often, and imperfect skepticism served me well in most topics I dived into.