Three Things, and a Thought

h/t to Don at Zoopraxiscope for links to these two essays: Richard Grenier, “The Gandhi Nobody Knows” Michael Crichton, “Aliens Cause Global Warming” (PDF) I had read years ago about what a creep and weirdo Gandhi was, so this first article just reinforced a vague opinion. The second, though – wow. Regular readers here have … Continue reading “Three Things, and a Thought”

Bloodletting, Lockdowns, and Other Adventures in Medical Theory

The term science as used over the years means two related but distinct and consistently confounded activities. The first and most ancient meaning: Science is an organized, systematic approach to a subject. Under this rubric are such modern fields as Political Science, most of Economics, and Philosophy, as well as Chiropractic Medicine, Astrology, and Scientology. … Continue reading “Bloodletting, Lockdowns, and Other Adventures in Medical Theory”

The Right Experts

This post is partly in response to a post by Malcolm the Cynic. Don’t be cowed by experts. Rather, judge them on results. My auto mechanics are judged by their demonstrated ability to keep my cars running. They are experts. Somebody with a degree in something, but without the track record to back it up, … Continue reading “The Right Experts”

Is There an Aristotelian in the House?

Or a Thomist, certainly. Somebody who could help me out with some basic philosophy. Woke up thinking about a certain epistemological issue, thought the readers of this blog might find this entertaining. Background: a few months ago, at our Chesterton Society Reading group meeting, there was a fun discussion with two people who had dropped … Continue reading “Is There an Aristotelian in the House?”

Science & Humility

Stray thought: In his classic Caltech 1974 commencement address often referred to here, Richard Feynman states the following: But there is one feature I notice that is generally missing in Cargo Cult Science.  That is the idea that we all hope you have learned in studying science in school—we never explicitly say what this is, but just hope that … Continue reading “Science & Humility”

Textbooks: An Unnecessary Evil pt 2

We are discussing textbooks, starting here with some preliminaries and what textbooks are.  The remaining two questions are: 2. Who gets to say what’s in textbooks 3. Why do we need them Who gets to say what’s in textbooks? First, let’s consider a fairly recent and I think representative example. Richard Feynman was once on a … Continue reading “Textbooks: An Unnecessary Evil pt 2”

Actual versus Potential: Aristotle and Quantum Probability

I only understand maybe 50% (and that may be optimistic) of the esteemed William Briggs’ latest post, but must share: Quantum Potency & Probability. Here’s my take on the issue: I’ve heard most of my life about how, at a quantum level, reality is probabilistic. What this seems to mean to people propounding it is that … Continue reading “Actual versus Potential: Aristotle and Quantum Probability”

On Progress and The World as Grass

Two interesting posts from two of my favorite regular blog reads: Mike Flynn says: “We often hear that the rate of progress is accelerating. Change is coming faster and faster. Things that were once pooh-poohed as “slippery slope fallacies” only a few years ago are now spoken of as inevitable and well-established. We are building … Continue reading “On Progress and The World as Grass”