Re: Ch. 12 - Conclusion: The Next Stage of History
OK, along with Mr. P, I've had it with the intellectual bashing. I'm going to put my responses all in one place. First of all, what is an intellectual? According to Webster: of or relating to the intellect or its use b : developed or chiefly guided by the intellect rather than by emotion or experience : RATIONAL c : requiring use of the intellect
2 a : given to study, reflection, and speculation b : engaged in activity requiring the creative use of the intellect
Sooooooo, instead of people who use their brain and think about things, we should pay attention to those who don't???? It seems to me that Harris is an intellectual. Should we not pay attention to him?????
When the Left-wing intellectual seems to have contempt for everything that the average American holds dear p204
Oh, really??? What is it that the average American holds dear that the 'Left-wing' intellectual holds in contempt???? Tolerance? Diversity? Privacy?
Will the intellectual not instinctively prefer any intellectual system that claims to give certainty about everything...
Well, there are two ways to answer this question 1) Wouldn't EVERYONE prefer certainty? Risk aversion is one of the core principals of corporate finance, but 2) No, I don't thing the intellectual would always prefer such a system, because the claims of certainty may be false. And one would have to intellectualize about it to determine if this was so.
Much of Left-wing ideology is transparently self-serving of the intellectual class .... it is part of one's own way of imaging the world.
The same could be said for any ideology, from the right or left. Ideologies are a way of imagining the world, that is what makes them useful, to the extent that they are a model that accurately reflects the world. Harris then goes on to say that we have to step out of the ideological box in order to reflect reality. I think he has it backwards. Rational persons only get into such a box once they have decided that it accurately reflects the real world. At some point we can have a hight degree of confidence in an ideology and start to use it regularly. This is called the scientific process. When the facts fit the theory, the theory is accepted until it no longer explains the facts. But if all the know facts are explained (evolution), then the theory is accepted. What Harris is doing is confusing the explanatory and predictive benefits of a world view. If a theory works because it explains so much, it can be used as a world view and predict useful things. This is true until it no longer explains facts. Then it must be revised. This is the scientific method. It is NOT fitting the facts to the world view. Harris give an excellent analogy of this with his exploded boxes. The one thing the analogy does not explain well is that sometimes the box can merely be modified, not exploded.