The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

I am sure of it

While happily esconced here in San Diego, I have been contemplating a few things. Since "contemplating" is merely a fancy way of saying "musing on", I am just doing what I have always done.

One of the things which intrigues me is the confidence one feels about his knowledge. Especially the knowledge he gained from his teachers while growing up. Most of us still believe the things we were taught in elementary school.  But beyond how to spell and string a sentence together (something way too many of us have not mastered) and do simple math, much of the knowledge turns out to be false. Our teachers did not know this would be the case, of course, but knowledge evolves and expands. Those of us who continue to study often find this out; that things they were taught were only true because of the perceptions of the time.

As we gain new knowledge and test the old with it, our perceptions change. And our understanding changes. Things which were "true" 50 years ago are now "wrong" or "untrue."

I like to use the example of what a healthy breakfast of the 1950's was compared to a healthy breakfast of today. But here's another one: Andy Pettite now testifies (in cross examination) that he may have "misunderstood" Roger Clemens about Clemens saying he used HGH (Human Growth Hormone).

Andy Pettite may have misunderstood Roger Clemens on HGH comment

Not long ago, I posted a piece about how we have learned how inaccurate our memories are. We've actually known this for a very long time. Think about that little game you may have played in school where you sit or stand in a line and the teacher whispers a sentence to the first student who then whispers it to the second and so on until the last student repeats out loud what he was told. Of course, it is completely different. That lesson was supposed to be about rumors and how they are often false because of how they change as they are retold. But it was also about memory, how it works, and how quickly it gets distorted. Though no one told us that at the time and, I think, few (if any) realized.

Well, just something to think about. Maybe you will agree with me, maybe not. Maybe you will find I am right about this and maybe I will learn I am wrong... sometime in the future.

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