10 FEB 2018 by ideonexus

 The Volumetric Approach to History

You will be thinking that we are coming to the end of this book: we’ve dealt with eight centuries, so there are only two to go. You may be surprised to learn, therefore, that in historical terms we are not even halfway. The reason for this discrepancy is that history is not time, and time is not history. History is not the study of the past per se; it is about people in the past. Time, separated from humanity, is purely a matter for scientists and star-gazers. If a previously unknown uninha...
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12 DEC 2017 by ideonexus

 Modern Industrial Farming and the Atlantic Slave Trade

Even plants and animals were mechanised. Around the time that Homo sapiens was elevated to divine status by humanist religions, farm animals stopped being viewed as living creatures that could feel pain and distress, and instead came to be treated as machines. Today these animals are often mass-produced in factorylike facilities, their bodies shaped in accordance with industrial needs. They pass their entire lives as cogs in a giant production line, and the length and quality of their existen...
Folksonomies: perspective exploitation
Folksonomies: perspective exploitation
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21 APR 2017 by ideonexus

 How Our Grandparents Perceive the World as Unchanging

Men can know a thing and yet know it quite ineffectively if it contradicts the general traditions and habits in which they live. [...] ONE of the most striking differences between the outlook of our grandparents and that of a modern intelligence today is the modification of time values that has occurred. By the measure of our knowledge their time-scale was extremely shallow. They had scarcely any historical perspective at all. They looked back to a past of a few thousand years and at the v...
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08 JUL 2016 by ideonexus

 Perspectives of History

The trouble I think is that historians dont actually agree on much about those processes. The post-marxist school of thought sees history as a process of struggles over resources between interest groups. Foucaultians see history as a process born of the "techniques" of power the elites wield over the non elites, Traditional liberalism saw history as a Hegelian (Not to be confused with marxisms very different view) process of gradual movements towards technological, social and cultural perfec...
Folksonomies: history perspective
Folksonomies: history perspective
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15 JUN 2016 by ideonexus

 Metaphysical Knowledge is Passive, Science Proactive

What science actually does is to show that any natural object we please may be treated in terms of relations upon which its occurrence depends, or as an event, and that by so treating it we are enabled to get behind, as it were, the immediate qualities the object of direct experience presents, and to regulate their happening, instead of having to wait for conditions beyond our control to bring it about. Reduction of experienced objects to the form of relations, which are neutral as respects q...
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31 MAY 2015 by ideonexus

 The Point

Behold yon miserable creature. That Point is a Being like ourselves, but confined to the non-dimensional Gulf. He is himself his own World, his own Universe; of any other than himself he can form no conception; he knows not Length, nor Breadth, nor Height, for he has had no experience of them; he has no cognizance even of the number Two; nor has he a thought of Plurality, for he is himself his One and All, being really Nothing. Yet mark his perfect self-contentment, and hence learn this lesso...
Folksonomies: perspective dimensions
Folksonomies: perspective dimensions
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31 MAY 2015 by ideonexus

 Anthropologization

. 'Anthropologization' is the great internal threat to knowledge in our day. We are inclined to believe that man has emancipated himself from himself since his discovery that he is not at the centre of creation, nor in the middle of space, nor even, perhaps, the summit and culmination of life; but though man is no longer sovereign in the kingdom of the world, though he no longer reigns at the centre of being, the 'human sciences' are dangerous intermediaries in the space of knowledge. The tru...
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30 MAY 2015 by ideonexus

 Risk of Childhood Kidnapping are Very Low

A generation ago 70 percent of children played outside; today the rate is down to 30 percent.209 In 2008 the nine-year-old son of the journalist Lenore Skenazy begged her to let him go home by himself on the New York subway. She agreed, and he made it home without incident. When she wrote about the vignette in a New York Sun column, she found herself at the center of a media frenzy in which she was dubbed “America’s Worst Mom.” (Sample headline: “Mom Lets 9-Year-Old Take Subway Home A...
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30 MAY 2015 by ideonexus

 Pessimism in Predictions and the False Sense of Insecurity

You would think that the disappearance of the gravest threat in the history of humanity would bring a sigh of relief among commentators on world affairs. Contrary to expert predictions, there was no invasion of Western Europe by Soviet tanks, no escalation of a crisis in Cuba or Berlin or the Middle East to a nuclear holocaust.1 The cities of the world were not vaporized; the atmosphere was not poisoned by radioactive fallout or choked with debris that blacked out the sun and sent Homo sapien...
Folksonomies: perspective pessimism
Folksonomies: perspective pessimism
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25 MAY 2015 by ideonexus

 Buddhini Samarasinghe: Scientists Should Stick to Science

It is a statistical fact that you are more likely to die while horseback riding (1 serious adverse event every ~350 exposures) than from taking Ecstasy (1 serious adverse event every ~10,000 exposures). Yet, in 2009, the scientist who said this was fired from his position as the chairman of the UK's Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs. Professor David Nutt's remit was to make scientific recommendations to government ministers on the classification of illegal drugs based on the harm they c...
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