The article I think shares the same frustrations as I do when you come in contact with these types of purists.
So perhaps instead of having a rant against 'clicker training' et al, it would be more helpful if you said you don't agree with 'those types' & why.
Of course there are fanatics in any walk - I could say I believe dressage riders are cruel because I've seen some of them practice hyperflexion.
as some purists really don't believe that horses have the capacity to have bad behavior/aggression, that it is only the handler's fault. But we know this to be untrue, since some lines of horses have hereditary bad natures, especially in some of the cow-horse lines.
My take on the above is that of course horses display 'bad' behaviour, but in the vast majority of cases, it is 'bad' only to *us* because we don't desire it. In the same way that any plant can be a weed if we don't want it in that particular garden. In so many cases humans have inadvertently caused the undesirable behaviour too. With regard to 'hereditary bad natures', of course we need to accept what's possible given 'temperament'(that we've often purposefully bred), you may never make a smoochy puppydog out of a horse that's been bred to be an assertive cow horse any more than out of an Argentinian fighting dog or whatever the guy mentioned, but it's absolutely possible to *improve* the behaviour & responses with operant conditioning.
I personally feel the problem with the fanatical 'fans' is the same as with the fanatical knockers - they've taken a few ideas, disregarded, missed or forgotten the gist and run with those pieces without thinking everything through & considering the whole picture.
I can say the c/ts I know all believe equine bad behavior to be "behavior fallout" on the part of aversive techniques from the rider and cannot be moved otherwise..... Which I just don't agree with. I mean, I could see that happening if you only used negative reinforcement, then yes, you could have a really grumpy horse. But I think for the most part people train from all the quadrants,
I do think a lot of problems people have is 'behavioural fallout' as you put it, from a range of things - IOW they inadvertently, unknowingly train their horse that this behaviour is necessary/works.
Most people I know of use predominantly, if not only negative reinforcement in training their horses. It is the universal main 'tool' of training. I don't for a second believe that it takes solely -R to make a 'grumpy' horse - heck, people even do it with solely +R.
The biggest problems I see are that people confuse -R with positive punishment, that they don't understand what constitutes *actual* +R(as opposed to praise, patting, etc) & don't appreciate the value/importance of it, and don't understand the full effects of their training, whatever 'quadrant' they use or don't. I think learning the principles of behavioural training - clicker training or otherwise - is hugely important & invaluable.
So... basically it sounds like I agree with you oh vair, that perhaps you've only had experience with the 'fringe dwellers' of c/t
. I hope our discussion has helped Pippi understand better what it's all about....(??)