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The Dumbing Down of America is Reflected on HP
We say."Is the glass half empty..." "I say is the moon half full/"
This is a political social hub, keep that in mind please.
Far from my writing that reflects what my life is basically about I sometimes need to jump back into the fray of things to keep my wits improving in numerous areas that I study. Let us get that straight first. Achieving an advanced degree does not make you smarter. But it teaches you where to look for knowledge and that that is only the beginning. It teaches you to not scan or gleam but to study. Of course many of our greats simply had the self discipline to do this on their own. The degree is not the important thing, the practice of studying is that thing.
I have been taking on online cooking class from our own Carb Diva. She doesn't know it so mums the word. But instead of just throwing some recipes out there she actually has studied the feature food, this is thinking at it's finest.
I am taking on online writing course. From a great thinker and studier of the art. The course is his passion though he does no call it a course but a Writers Mailbag - Yes Bill Holland. He makes me study not just spoon feeds me. And I dare say he does that for thousands of others.
There are many more. They study the area of interest and never merely repeat what others have said. There are full on experts in their field here and it is marvelous. I have always been intrigued and therefor studied in the area of comparative religions and what I can only call comparative sociology. There are real students and real teachers here in those areas.
Now as you could have surmised I will now address the dumbing down and political discussions. When I was writing policy in the area of ICANN and it's NICs we still called this the World Wide Web and spent much time devising policy which would protect some semblance of copyright and trademark protection while at the same time keeping it net neutral and country sovereign. It was a daunting task to get countries that had no freedom of speech protections to accept at least some or be out of the web entirely. Some in fact at first refused. Vietnam was my country to work with and it was slow and tedious work. Trying to strategically keep an internet connection to the world and yet maintain it as a national resource is a sticky wicket. But we are almost there and basically there unofficially.
The point here being that back in the late nineties and turn of the century we worked hard to make the net available to anyone. And an old friend called me up and lamented, maybe that was not the best idea. People do not take the responsibility along with the power.
The future looks quite bright for him.
Oh Society the Only Thing We Need More Of Is Learning - there is enough love.
Some of HP looks like Facebook.
My 6 year old and I set up and email account and a Facebook account with him punching all the numbers. (not his name thank you very much). And then he did the same with HP. I heard that they taught a chimp to register for stuff online -- I fully believe that - do you?
Now before you get ahead of this remember a good lesson that is learned somewhere every day but well recorded in the Bible. "a prophet is not accepted in their own home town". And as writers we know that we are not automatically accepted by our families. So I temper this notion that I will speak of by saying, sometimes it is in fact our achievements that others simply cannot accept. A big brother at a menial job cannot accept his little brother as a CEO and author. So then the elder only sees the little brother. And this is very dangerous for little brothers who also see themselves as merely the little brother. Self sabotage and low esteem usually follow.
This brings us back to the dumbing down. If you are associated with a group of people that do not study then your input into that group will not be well accepted if you are studying on issues rather than just reading headlines. Likewise if you are in a group that studies you would be well advised not to just parrot something you heard. So where do we stand on FB and HP? Do you feel that you study too much to participate or that you study too little? In fact do you think you may be mocked for being one or the other?
Here is a hint in our two most contentious areas the you are not to discuss at a dinner table. Religion -- Just blatant old quoting of scripture or overly abundant use of citations rather than writing out a concept. Politics -- when references of fact are clearly gleamed from sensational headlines with referencing to YouTube.
We find it very interesting that today more people look up a word's meaning and just accept that definition that pops up by Google. That is the epitome of not studying. Very much of the time that definition is not inline with Merriam Websters. These methods are popular now and studying is not.
This picture of my daughter was not splattered on FB the moment was between us.
Like him or hate him -- at least he studied his art and shared it with us. A great in my mind.
I give this second tribute so we can see beauty in the practice of a craft. From being blind, to dancing to a perfect stallion.
Is the craft of living lost in this day?
It is the reflection of the soul and depth of at least an attempt to understand that speaks in our writing. Even our speech is sometimes not filtered with an effort to learn.
So I was sitting with a group of quite normal people. My friend and I were visitors. And acquaintances of some. There was an expert in the room. She led the discussion on an issue we had come to learn more about. During discussion someone stopped my friend and asked him what he did for a living. Instead of saying I would rather not make this about me, he revealed his profession which requires a great deal of structured studying. It was palpable the immediate ostracism. Just think of that social adjustment in the last 30 years. Where education is held in disdain rather than respect.
If you doubt what I say - pay attention to FB and HB. The most rejected people in social media are those with actual expertise in the area of discussion. If one is so bold to correct a clearly flawed thinking they are actually ridiculed as thinking they are so smart. Wow! We tear down leaders of our country, we tear down doctors as being thiefs, Lawyers as being evil though they just protected the constitution and a woman's rights. Cops are denigrated for their education in public safety. Does the flash opinion sensational accusatory writer actually deserve our "following" or does the learned?
We are shutting down in our prosperous 1st world society search and opting in for headlines. A wonderful example of this is modern religion. Of course we do not have Crusades or indigenous people eradication any more. But we have thought police as rampant as any liberal could accomplish. There is a wonderful saying that helps spur me on often; "contempt prior to investigation is in itself contemptuous".
Maybe we should all take this Rorschach test
Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein (cool name). Was a brilliant 20th century philosopher. Considered the best by his colleagues -- and below that by the general. Within areas of deep consideration like linguistics and how we think, how we think and linguistics, labels he was king.
I reference here labels. If we call a color brown then that color is brown and if everyone agrees then that is what brown is. If we call Eric a bigot and we say it often enough and loud enough and even mean enough then Eric is a bigot. And if everyone agrees that is what Eric is then he is a bigot. Facts are irrelevant. Language does not work on facts it works on commonality of communication. But can this be left to a common bully to lead the masses in changing the language? Me thinks not ;-) I mean what happens if Eric is not a bigot in reality? By the masses it no longer matters and in fact our reality changes by use. Sorry to tell you that a rose by any other name is still a rose, is false. A man who is not a father but takes on the role of a father is still not a father -- until we call him that and generally accept that,, it is not true. It is the old concept of the King having no clothes.
Today false headlines are repeated and repeated ad nauseum. And the problem here is that, let us say that 50/50 accept that as the proper label. We have a problem of communication. You say Eric is good, Joe says Eric is a bigot. So what is Eric and what is a bigot.
Total 80% communication breakdown and destruction of the American English language. Marriage; I got no problem with it being alternative. But now I do not know what marriage is. We changed the definition. I think we can adjust - it only took 50 years of effort - good for us.
But nasty sensational headlines repeated as fact and accepted by only a 3rd or so of our language speaking people is a major problem. I think you are the definition of bigot and you think I am because our sophistry makes us different? I question if even our core beliefs are different.
But what my buddies and I on panels in the UN Commission on Science and Technology failed to get was that the free access would change languages and actually distance people from actually communicating. Sure the sight and hearing is magnified but we have ruined the language that allows us civil discourse. And I apologize for my part therein.