As one of those who up-voted - I apologize - I was unaware of the disinterest in R questions. I'm a C++ guy and working on a Stat PhD. I up-voted because I saw it as a different perspective on a programming language which I'm still learning. I would've expected the answer to use an option to the function, ordering=less, or something.
Instead, I think the answer was more statistical than the question because -- I think -- knowing the stats, @ucfagls, suggested simply flipping the sign. Something intrinsically obvious to a statistician thinking about rank statistics, but not so much so to low-level programmer thinking about implementation specifics.
Further, I would suggest you encourage R questions here for precisely this reason. Being a language written with statistics in mind, I think the statistician can provide unique insight that a generalist or low-level programmer would miss. However, I don't think all R questions should be moved here because certain interface aspects or databasing backend questions, etc., would probably be better answered by someone who has the generalist / low-level programmer insight who would probably frequent StackOverflow more.
Noise: I forgot to mention, that with voting, once someone has access to it you are probably going to get a bit of noise in the importance of a question/answer: "+1 - Hey I didn't think of it that way", "+1 - That was cooool.", "+1 for use of the word Nefarious.". It's certainly limited because you have a max of 30 -- which I think is the correct limit -- but you're still going to get a few like me who up-voted and didn't know better or up-voted for the wrong reasons... smirk
If the SO/SE gods were willing, we could consider a multivariate rating scale (perhaps one that's only visible above a certain reputation) so as not to confuse the newbies. Then, perhaps like slashdot, you could set a threshold for fodder below which you have no interest in viewing it. Slashdot has +1 funny, +1 insightful, probably don't want to encourage "funny" here, but what about "+1 algorithm", "+1 perspective", "+1 wave to C.R. Rao for me..."