In order to think wisely I need to read wisely. I like to read real Historians, not self-titled. I like to read real Philosophers, Musicologist, and Scientists.
If 98% of the world’s leading Climate Scientists (from 192 countries) agree about the dangers and causes of Global Warming I believe them. I’m sure, especially if I needed huge sums of money to maintain power, I might kowtow to Big Oil and all their allies and don’t allow my brain to read any scientific truth. Or if my ego was so big I figured I know more than 11,000 of the worlds’ leading Climate Scientists I might call Global Warming a hoax.
Things get trickier when we task our brain to dissect Philosophers. They aren’t to be dissected, just thought about.
Philosophers learn to look and write about the world…its problems, people, history and possible future. Philosophy is separated from physical science.
From Aristotle, Plato, Thomas Aquinas, Confucius and John Locke we watch great brains dealing with questions about knowledge, reason, minds, values and language.
Back when we allowed our American banks to bring the world economy to its knees we also lost a great Philosopher. He died in June, 2007.
I decided to get one of his books because after a person dies the press starts talking about their greatness. I wish I knew about Richard Rorty when he wrote the book I purchased. The title is “Achieving our Country.”
Last week I remembered a few lines in this book, written in 1998. Now these lines are also being spread around the internet. I guess we now see the importance of great Philosophers, and reading and absorbing. It might have warned some of us to open our eyes and listen.
This is a paragraph, written in 1998, that you might enjoy.
“members of labor unions, and un-organized unskilled workers, will sooner or later realize that their government is not even trying to prevent wages from sinking or to prevent jobs from being exported. Around the same time, they will realize that suburban white-collar workers – themselves desperately afraid of being downsized – are not going to let themselves be taxed to provide social benefits for anyone else.
At that point, something will crack. The non-suburban electorate will decide that the system has failed and start looking around for a strongman to vote for – someone willing to assure them that once he is elected, the smug bureaucrats, tricky lawyers, overpaid bond salesmen and post modernist professors will no longer be calling the shots…
One thing that is very likely to happen is that the gains made in the past forty years by black and brown Americans, and by homosexuals, will be wiped out. Jocular contempt for women will come back into fashion… All the resentment which badly educated Americans feel about having their manners dictated to them by college graduates will find an outlet
You may now, loudly, blow out your breath.