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Thread: Questions for CJ

  1. #481
    Paperback Writer RevForum Administrator Amoeba's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions for CJ

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  2. #482
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    Default Re: Questions for CJ

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  3. #483
    Paperback Writer RevForum Administrator Amoeba's Avatar
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    One of the reasons I like My Back Pages so much is because he gives a pretty decent explanation there of why he decided to move away from his earlier activist persona.

    Joan Baez talks a bit about it here:

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  4. #484
    Paperback Writer RevForum Administrator Amoeba's Avatar
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    Brilliant stuff:

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  5. #485
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    Also, if you have the time to read, check out this brief text by Bourdieu on "thinking about limits": https://eduardogalak.files.wordpress...e-bourdieu.pdf

    Would be curious to know what you think about it.
    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  6. #486
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amoeba View Post
    Also, if you have the time to read, check out this brief text by Bourdieu on "thinking about limits": https://eduardogalak.files.wordpress...e-bourdieu.pdf

    Would be curious to know what you think about it.
    An interesting piece. Reading it, I was reminded of Latour. Although he and Bourdieu are opposed, they seem to address remarkably similar concerns. I may have even read a Bourdieu article and ascribed it to Latour, with whom I am marginally familar.
    Einstein on marxology:
    "In the realm of the seekers after truth there is no human authority.
    Whoever attempts to play the magistrate there founders on the laughter of the Gods."

  7. #487
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    Yeah, there are some similarities, but Bourdieu really didn't like Latour's overall project, considering it to be marred by the scholastic vision of the world that "reduces everything to texts", which he also touches on in the Limit piece regarding postmodernism. I think those are excesses, which you can also find with some dedicated to Bourdieu's programme (which he himself roundly criticized).

    Anyway, this is really good and somewhat oddly filmed:

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  8. #488
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    From the same series:

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  9. #489
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    Default Re: Questions for CJ

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  10. #490
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    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  11. #491
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    Thoughts on Bill Bradley and, specifically his primary run?

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  12. #492
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    Bradley was a great open shooter as they used to say. As a pretender to the throne... well, he was a great open shooter.
    Einstein on marxology:
    "In the realm of the seekers after truth there is no human authority.
    Whoever attempts to play the magistrate there founders on the laughter of the Gods."

  13. #493
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amoeba View Post
    I thought this was a very principled answer to that vile question, which the "journalist" should be eternally ashamed of for asking:

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/20...KgJ/story.html
    Einstein on marxology:
    "In the realm of the seekers after truth there is no human authority.
    Whoever attempts to play the magistrate there founders on the laughter of the Gods."

  14. #494
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    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  15. #495
    Administrator RevForum Administrator CornetJoyce's Avatar
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    I do indeed like that.

    I sometimes think I see that civilizations originate in the disclosure of some mystery, some secret; and expand with the progressive publication of their secret; and end in exhaustion when there is no longer any secret, when the mystery has been divulged, that is to say profaned. The whole story is illustrated in the difference between ideogram and alphabet - Norman O. Brown
    Einstein on marxology:
    "In the realm of the seekers after truth there is no human authority.
    Whoever attempts to play the magistrate there founders on the laughter of the Gods."

  16. #496
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    Any thoughts on Stephen Jay Gould? He seems like a rare natural scientist who also saw the value of the humanities (even wrote a book about bridging the gap between the two!).

    Also:

    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  17. #497
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amoeba View Post
    Any thoughts on Stephen Jay Gould? He seems like a rare natural scientist who also saw the value of the humanities (even wrote a book about bridging the gap between the two!).
    As far as I know, he's never advocated anything I regard as problematical (The IQ video is a pretty good example.), but I haven't read his books, just his articles. I do question his assertion that IQ is "about race." To a progressive, all history is the history of the overweening Race Struggle.

    Long ago, a friend dragged me to a Mensa meeting, trying to sign me up. The members were mostly technical folk and chatted mostly about cars and jobs. Afterward, my friend admitted that his group was boring and propounded a theory of IQ tests in which the score was "a phenomenon related to nothing else."

    What I see in the "iq number" is an exemplification of linear thought, which perhaps reached its zenith in the 1950s when males found "36-22-36" positively sensual and baseball watchers elaborately recorded games. Scientology promised to raise iq scores and clearly regarded each incremental digit as significant. 121 was not 120.

    The Kropotkin piece is interesting and reinforces my prejudices in these matters.
    Einstein on marxology:
    "In the realm of the seekers after truth there is no human authority.
    Whoever attempts to play the magistrate there founders on the laughter of the Gods."

  18. #498
    Paperback Writer RevForum Administrator Amoeba's Avatar
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    Hmm, where does he say IQ is about race? I believe he's quite adamant that it's not, and that the only correlation you may find between certain groups or classes of people and IQ on racial/ethnic lines is due to "nurture" factors like lack of quality education, socio-economic deprivation, etc. That's also the argument he makes in his critique of the Bell Curve and other pseudo-scientific racism in his Mismeasure of Man: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mismeasure_of_Man

    And yeah I agree that the IQ is a ridiculous notion from the beginning. Like Gould says in the interview, the notion that you can capture human intelligence in a number is so absurd it's comical anyone can seriously entertain it, let alone base a research programme on it (like evopsych does).
    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

  19. #499
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    The topic of the video above is the iq racial disparity and the racism that weirdly interprets it. Demolishing that "scientific" rationale is a public service, but "racism" is not the whole picture.

    In the Scopes trial, Darrow called Bryan to the stand and made a fool of him. Bryan wanted to return the favor by calling Darrow to the stand, but Darrow demurred and let Scopes be found guilty. Darrow knew what Bryan would ask him about: the progressive biology textbook Scopes was accused of using in his class- a primer on eugenics. Sure, the book matter- of- factly declared that whites were "the most advanced race" but by no means did it stop there.


    Parasitism and its Cost to Society. – Hundreds of families such as those described above exist today, spreading disease, immorality, and crime to all parts of this country. The cost to society of such families is very severe. Just as certain animals or plants become parasitic on other plants or animals, these families have become parasitic on society. They not only do harm to others by corrupting, stealing, or spreading disease, but they are actually protected and cared for by the state out of public money. Largely for them the poorhouse and the asylum exist. They take from society, but they give nothing in return. They are true parasites.

    The Remedy. – If such people were lower animals, we would probably kill them off to prevent them from spreading. Humanity will not allow this, but we do have the remedy of separating the sexes in asylums or other places and in various ways preventing intermarriage and the possibilities of perpetuating such a low and degenerate race. Remedies of this sort have been tried successfully in Europe and are now meeting with some success in this country.


    Bryan, a good Christian, was a bitter enemy of eugenics, I suppose Darrow was too, and he certainly didn't want to defend it.
    Einstein on marxology:
    "In the realm of the seekers after truth there is no human authority.
    Whoever attempts to play the magistrate there founders on the laughter of the Gods."

  20. #500
    Paperback Writer RevForum Administrator Amoeba's Avatar
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    I think I get your point now. Gould does discuss the broader picture of eugenics in the aforementioned Mismeasure of Man, writing for example:

    "But critiques of biological determinism are also timely at certain moments (including the present) because—and you may now choose your favorite image, from heads of the Lernaean Hydra if your tastes be classical, to bad pennies or returning cats if you prefer familiar proverbs, to crabgrass on suburban lawns if you favor vernacular modernity—the same bad arguments recur every few years with a predictable and depressing regularity. No sooner do we debunk one version than the next chapter of the same bad text emerges to ephemeral prominence. No mystery attends the reason for these recurrences. They are not manifestations of some underlying cyclicity, obeying a natural law that might be captured in a mathematical formula as convenient as IQ; nor do these episodes represent any hot item of new data or some previously unconsidered novel twist in argument, for the theory of unitary, rankable, innate, and effectively unchangeable intelligence never alters very much in each sequential formulation. Each surge to popularity works with the same fallacious logic and flawed information.

    The reasons for recurrence are sociopolitical, and not far to seek: resurgences of biological determinism correlate with episodes of political retrenchment, particularly with campaigns for reduced government spending on social programs, or at times of fear among ruling elites, when disadvantaged groups sow serious social unrest or even threaten to usurp power. What argument against social change could be more chillingly effective than the claim that established orders, with some groups on top and others at the bottom, exist as an accurate reflection of the innate and unchangeable intellectual capacities of people so ranked?

    Why struggle and spend to raise the unboostable IQ of races or social classes at the bottom of the economic ladder; better simply to accept nature's unfortunate dictates and save a passel of federal funds; (we can then more easily sustain tax breaks for the wealthy!)? Why bother yourself about underrepresentation of disadvantaged groups in your honored and remunerative bailiwick if such absence records the diminished ability or general immorality, biologically imposed, of most members in the rejected group, and not the legacy or current reality of social prejudice? (The groups so stigmatized may be races, classes, sexes, behavioral propensities, religions, or national origins. Biological determinism is a general theory, and particular bearers of current disparagement act as surrogates for all others subject to similar prejudice at different times and places. In this sense, calls for solidarity among demeaned groups should not be dismissed as mere political rhetoric, but rather applauded as proper reactions to common reasons for mistreatment.)

    Please note that I am discussing the cyclical surge to popularity of innatist arguments for unitary, rankable intelligence, not the episodic formulation of such claims. The general argument is always present, always available, always published, always exploitable. Episodes of intense public attention therefore record swings in the pendulum of political preferences toward the right position for exploiting this hoary old fallacy with a seriousness based on naive hope or cynical recognition of evident utility. Resurgences of biological determinism correlate with periods of political retrenchment and destruction of social generosity."

    This also pretty nicely explains the whole evopsych/Damore/Jordan Peterson spike in popularity we're seeing now, in the age of Trump.
    To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them.

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