The scene is a riot, on the first day of May, 1517. It would later be known as Evil May Day,or Ill May Day. An angry mob, mostly comprised of apprentices, marched through the streets of London, their passion inflamed … Continue reading →
I would recommend adding this to your reading lists, I’m only a third of the way though, but it has been a detailed and interesting account of genesis and growth of the large mean streak of anti-intellectualism that is currently dominating the zeitgeist of American society. Jacoby was interviewed by Bill Moyers and thus, allow me to wet your whistle with an excerpt from the transcript.
SUSAN JACOBY: Now, this was not always the case in our country. In the 19th century Robert Ingersoll, whom we’ve talked, who is known as the great agnostic, had audiences full of (Read more…)
Great visualization of the now-famous response from evolutionary biologist, author, and well-known atheist, Richard Dawkins, when asked in 2006 about his argument that there is no god, “What if you’re wrong?” “Anybody could be wrong, ” he replies. “We could all be … Continue reading →
Creationism (and it’s dressed-up-in-drag younger brother, “intelligent” design) is the black mold of education. It’s an insidious infection of the mind, an intellectual parasite. And like real-life black mold, it creates a toxic environment – for learning and critical thinking. … Continue reading →
Health Canada has allowed an increasing number of useless “alternative” healthcare (alternative TO healthcare in most cases) products to be sold in Canada over the last decade, despite the lack of proper (or in some cases, any) research data to … Continue reading →
What is the best way to learn?
Usually by screwing up in a spectacular fashion. Search your memories (Luke) and I bet you can find a lesson painfully learned, but painfully learned well in your past.
Fast forward to school and the increasing focus on tests and testing. Everyone wants to do well on the tests, but how does photocopying facts improve your critical thinking? It doesn’t. Lawrence Davidson in Scientific American comments on the lack of critical thinking skills being taught in school:
“Informal learning environments tolerate failure better than schools. Perhaps many (Read more…)
I don’t dream very much, Susan once said to me. We were having a talk about some crazy dream I was recalling. They’re always crazy, of course. But the conversation was about whether we dream – all of us – … Continue reading →
Back in the late 1990s, I wrote an essay about the “controversy” over who actually wrote the works of Shakespeare. I wrote, then, Not everyone agrees that Shakespeare wrote Shakespeare. The challenge to his authorship isn’t new: for the last … Continue reading →
Can the dead speak to us from beyond the grave? No, of course not. But that doesn’t stop literally millions of superstitious people from believing they do. And some think they can use technology to facilitate the conversation. Of course, … Continue reading →
Lobbyist. For some, the word conjures frightening images of nefarious trolls and ogres in Armani suits lurking under the bridges and in the woods in the dark night, snatching unwary politicians and dragging them down to whatever hell the gullible … Continue reading →
My left-wing, pro-union friends would be amused to hear me called a “leftie.” They generally think of me as right as Steven Harper. The only difference to them, I suppose, is my unwillingness to sell Canada to the highest corporate … Continue reading →
There’s a truly great moment in Shakespeare’s play, Macbeth, when Macbeth voices his last, and perhaps most moving, soliloquy about the fleetingness of life, and the meaning of what we do on this mortal coil. Life is devoid of meaning, … Continue reading →
What is propaganda? The word gets thrown around easily by people who obviously mean “anything we dislike or don’t agree with.” It’s a pejorative often used by a small group to describe anything official that any level of government puts … Continue reading →
In the middle of a video parody on YouTube that skewers council on our new rec facilities, there’s a comment about “the mushroom farm debacle.” It then goes on, rather erratically, to rail about “two yanks” and mushrooms growing in … Continue reading →
I was looking outside today as the snow fell in Collingwood (-11C when we awoke, -10C when I first walked my dog…) and thinking of my brother-in-law in England, where they are getting walloped by a Canadian-style winter. He must … Continue reading →
When the books stacked beside the bed get tall enough to hold not only a cup of tea at easy reach, but a plate of toast with no threat of falling, then perhaps it’s time to cull the pile and put aside those … Continue reading →
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