An online friend of mine, L. J. Galleta, recently hosted a meeting on development, broadly defined. Of course, in this meeting the participants expressed differences of opinion on several key issues. Ms. Galleta later reported having encountered some people in the meeting whose positions it seemed she could not sway, regardless of the technical superiority of the content of her arguments. She aired her frustration by saying, "it's a total waste of time arguing with people whose mindsets are not open and flexible enough to allow other 'truth' not aligned with their own."
My answer: "people have entrenched their positions for as long as they have taken positions. After all, for most people, their positions correlate to their hidden, taken-for-granted values; and likewise, to the power they perceive themselves to possess. Additionally, anyone who only includes the technical constructs of truth, without also considering the associated political constructs, will arguably have limited success with their efforts to move people. Regardless of the levels of altruism represented or the objective, transformational value of anyone's proposed solutions; ultimately, all movement (leadership) is transactional. Therefore, the question to answer becomes how do you move those with different perspectives and still allow them to retain or enhance their personal power (regardless of the bases of power they might employ)."
Check Ms. Galleta's blog at: http://drippingmind.wordpress.com/ and follow her on twitter @ljgalleta