Noticing the 5-second mindkill

I’ve been read­ing news and a head­line popped out at me:

Some Con­ser­va­tive back­benchers stirred up con­tro­versy in the House of Com­mons Tues­day when they ac­cused their own party of pre­vent­ing them from speak­ing out in Par­li­a­ment.

(For the US au­di­ence, the Cana­dian (and Bri­tish) House of Com­mons is like the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, only with less democ­racy.)

My first thought: how dare the Prime Minister muz­zles demo­crat­i­cally elected MPs!

(For the US au­di­ence, the Prime Minister in a ma­jor­ity gov­ern­ment has the power of the Pres­i­dent and the ma­jor­ity lead­ers in both cham­bers com­bined, and much much more. “MP” (Mem­ber of Par­li­a­ment) is the equiv­a­lent of a “Rep.” Back­benchers are the reps who don’t get a port­fo­lio in the ad­minis­tra­tion. In­deed, ba­si­cally no sep­a­ra­tion of the leg­is­la­tive power from the ex­ec­u­tive. As I said, less democ­racy. Blame the Brits.)

Then I keep read­ing:

Warawa [the MP in ques­tion] did not spec­ify the topic, but it’s widely be­lieved that he wanted to bring up his mo­tion call­ing on par­li­a­men­tar­i­ans to con­demn sex-se­lec­tive abor­tion.

My next thought: oh, good on the Prime Minister to pre­vent that crazy lu­natic from push­ing his pro-life agenda!

And fi­nally, my third thought: WTF did just hap­pen? I changed my mind 180 de­grees in­stantly be­cause I dis­agree with the per­son’s opinion, even though the origi­nal is­sue didn’t go away. Mind­kill in ac­tion. Had he been try­ing to pro­mote, say, le­gal­iza­tion of mar­ijuana in­stead, I would have been twice as in­dig­nant about the evil PM.

Now, I do no­tice this some­times (of­ten when read­ing some­thing on LW), but prob­a­bly not ev­ery time it hap­pens to me. I want to no­tice it more of­ten.

So, I’m ask­ing peo­ple to give your own (hope­fully non-poli­ti­cal) ex­am­ples of notic­ing your in­stant about-face and hope­fully some ex­pe­rience in rec­og­niz­ing it more re­li­ably.