What is the Limit of Knowledge?

In my London childhood, a horse-drawn wagon delivered milk each day in glass bottles with the cream risen to the top in a visible layer. Sparrows had learned to peck through the foil caps and gorge on the prize. My first computer used magnets the shape of a doughnut and smaller than an apple pip […]

How the Populist Movements Compare to the Hippies

The right-wing populist movements here and in the UK are driven by anger. They justify disruption of the present system because it is seen as not working for people. They do not respect law and tradition when they stand in the way of their goals. The end justifies the means. I never thought I would […]

Why Do We Believe What We Believe?

Why do we believe what we believe, and how is it possible that we differ so much? Our beliefs comes from our senses, culture, in-group, experts, feelings and thinking. Of these, only thinking and expertise can make a defensible case. (This is a major rewrite of the original 5/19/19 post.)

What We Have Here is a Failure to Communicate

I offer this Reddit discussion about the FOX News article Honduran man charged with raping, killing jogger in New Jersey had been deported twice as an example of how hard it is to discuss politics. I am posting as PhilAndMaude. Person-A: A-fucking-nother one. How many illegals have killed American citizens this year. We should compare it to […]

The Four Forces Driving Political Conflict

Years ago, I thought I was going to die. The streets were dark and slick with rain. I was getting a ride back from a weekend encounter group where all our emotions had been laid bare, and the driver and the other passenger entered into such a screaming match over politics I thought a car […]

Why There is a Crisis of Fake News

Call it the law of unintended consequences. The internet is a disruptive technology comparable to the Gutenberg press. Initially it was seen as a global encyclopedia, making all human knowledge available to everyone. Then social media arose, and I saw this as revolutionary for two reasons: It allows people around the world to see each […]

You Only Have Six Original Thoughts in Your Life

By an original thought, I mean putting together existing ideas and observations and coming up with a new thought or product or process that you’ve never met before. All developments are constructed from the raw materials of our present knowledge, and new discoveries are often made independently by a number of people. There are many […]

Welcome to the New World of Perpetual War

It’s a New World of Perpetual War: US has been at war in Afghanistan for 17+ years Taliban still holds around half the country US has bombing campaigns in 8 countries US has troop presence in 177 countries (out of 193 total) Main reason given for terrorist attacks is US troop presence All this for […]

Censorship on Conservative Sites

I have long had the experience of being censored on conservative sites, despite making a point of being meticulously respectful. On reddit, I have been blocked from the subreddits conservative, askaconservative and The_Donald, but they are famous for being hyper-sensitive. I did not anticipate censorship from a prestigious publication like the National Review. David French […]

Identity

The entire canon of Western thought, from Aristotelian logic to George Boole (he of boolean arithmetic) to the divide-and-conquer approach of science, invites us to view and categorize the world according to its differences, not its similarities. A table is a table and a chair is a chair. Language is the tool we use for […]