DaveAgain wrote:For physical objects it would be a distance thing: this one here, that one there. When discussing concepts/opinions/events, your choice might just be phrasing.
I think the same principle generally applies with less concrete examples.
This is ridiculous. -- This situation/conversation that I am in right now is ridiculous.
That is ridiculous. -- Something I just heard about/a situation happening elsewhere is ridiculous.
This is a good song. -- The song that's playing right now is a good song.
That is a good song. -- A song we're talking about is a good song.
Edit: improved one of my examples.