All posts tagged Quotes

“My father was a Freethinker, but died when I was only three years old. Wishing me to be bought up without superstition he appointed two Freethinkers as my guardians. The Courts, however, set aside his will, and had me educated in the Christian faith. I am afraid the result was disappointing, but that was not the fault of the law. If he had directed that I should be educated as a Christadelphian or a Muggletonion or a Seventh-Day Adventist the Courts would not have dreamt of objecting. A parent has the right to ordain that any imaginable superstition shall be installed into his children after his death, but has not the right to say that they shall be kept free from superstition if possible.”

Bertrand Russell – Let the People Think


From the page: “I have often removed myself from the conversation on sites that border on being misogynistic. Reading Slashdot comments, for example, sometimes makes me ill. I have written before about misogyny in the tech world. The attacks on Sierra are an extreme example, but I can tell you that many women experience much more subtle ‘attacks’ as they move through the tech world. Women often perceive that their ideas are not listened to, that they’re not welcome in certain forums, that the men who dominate the tech culture are generally not interested in seeing things from their point of view.”


From the page: “With a hippy’s intuitive generalist overview, however, it’s tempting to think that Gaia is not a freak of nature, rather, it is the freak called nature. Gaia is an improbable congruence of physical imperatives, and life as we know it has survived under Its mantle long enough to invent qwerty keyboards and write this observation down.”


“Evolution as described by Charles Darwin is a scientific theory, abundantly reconfirmed, explaining physical phenomena by physical causes. Intelligent Design is a faith-based initiative in rhetorical argument. Should we teach I.D. in America’s public schools? Yes, let’s do — not as science, but alongside other spiritual beliefs, such as Islam, Zoroastrianism ans the Hindu idea that Earth rests on Chukwa, the giant turtle.”

“If I were not an atheist, I would believe in a God who would choose to save people on the basis of the totality of their lives and not the pattern of their words. I think he would prefer an honest and righteous atheist to a TV preacher whose every word is God, God, God, and whose every deed is foul, foul, foul.” – Isaac Asimov

Fractal wrongness: The state of being wrong at every conceivable scale of resolution. That is, from a distance, a fractally wrong person's worldview is incorrect; and furthermore, if you zoom in on any small part of that person's worldview, that part is just as wrong as the whole worldview.
Debating with a person who is fractally wrong leads to infinite regress, as every refutation you make of that person's opinions will lead to a rejoinder, full of half-truths, leaps of logic, and outright lies, that requires just as much refutation to debunk as the first one. It is as impossible to convince a fractally wrong person of anything as it is to walk around the edge of the Mandelbrot set in finite time.
If you ever get embroiled in a discussion with a fractally wrong person on the Internet–in mailing lists, newsgroups, or website forums–your best bet is to say your piece once and ignore any replies, thus saving yourself time.

– Keunwoo Lee