Saturday, July 22, 2006

The conundrum of the Kantian Nihilist

The recent stupidity of Muir's comic (no I won't link you- it has to be the only web comic that is so retarded I won't read. And I read ghastly religiously for crissakes) has created a bit of a buzz. But it has me thinking about a bigger issue- that of intellectual fakery.

It is easy enough to appear as an "Expert" with a little bit of knowledge and some strong opinions. We see that all the time in media with "pundits". Get something right one time and be willing to make reckless statements (i.e. good tv)? Welcome to a career as a talkign head. Make up facts to support your position? All the better!

But real intellectualism? That is of no use in the generic sense. I don't pretend that this is in any way new. Richard Hofstadter wrote about this in 1963. But it makes one wonder about the sustainability of such an organizational structure. In a world where true knowledge is more and more valuable, there is more chaff to sift through. And increasingly, that is what we as a species spend our time doing. Why do you think things like google and wikipedia are so popular? Why do we spend so much time creating and optimizing databases? Do we hit a point where the system breaks down?

I don't know but I have a sense we will find out sooner rather than later.

I ponder, as a mere side thought, if this is in a way related to trend of the arm's length attack. By that I mean the use of other's to attack positions or people (e.g. swift boat liars for truth - though that isn't what prompted this paragraph). An attack without sullying one's hands if you will. This isn't new but it seems to be more and more prevelant. In a society where the image of one's intellect is prevalent for creditability, it presents an interesting opportunity to damage another person's creditibilty by mere allegations without the potential for blowback.

Links and such.

This will be a work in progress. Think of it as a blogroll in primative form but for sites that I think more people would benefit by reading.

Personal Blogs

Milo's blog bungojungo also see ty eats cheese.

Martin's blog Ghostlands


Big Picture

Angry Bear

Shopping Stuff

Porto Rico Coffee
See my previous reviews.

Fatwallet forums This is a great to find deals and reviews on things to buy.

Amazon Refund tracker

Package Mapper - appears dead.


Hardball Times