Saturday, January 07, 2017

December 30


The hard but just rule is that if the ideas don't work, you must throw them away. -- Carl Sagan

Me and Carl, hanging out on the Group W bench, waiting for a leaky tire to get fixed.

This book is a debunking of non-scientific ideas like "there are demons."

We get a phone book.  Or what looks a lot like a phone book, only smaller.  The print in the tiny phone book is far too small for anyone who might think to use a phone book to be able to read it.  People young enough to read the print in today's phone books are way too young to think of using a phone book.  Ergo -- phone books as they are now produced are a useless waste of paper and other resources.  (OK, there are a few people who have large magnifying glasses, and so can use miniature phone books with that assistance.  I hold my position that so few people can actually use them that delivering such books to everyone is an expensive waste.)

Similarly -- books which debunk demons (etc., etc., etc.........................) are not reaching their intended audience.  As far as I can tell, such books are totally completely NOT of interest to people who believe in demons (etc.................).  I believe the hard cold fact is that they WANT to believe in that stuff.  The LAST thing they want is to have their demons (or whatever) not exist.

Sad, but true, I am convinced.  They don't want facts, and they really DO NOT want facts that contradict their beliefs.  They like believing what they believe, and that's the end of the story.  Period.

So -- I am pretty sure the book above is never going to appeal to the people Carl -- and I -- think would most benefit from it.

Unlike the teeny phone book, it's not a complete waste of space.  It contains excellent quotes, and the baloney-detection toolkit.  But it's never (in my humble) going to have its intended effect with its intended audience.  Alas.

Surprisingly interesting tile in the ladies' room at the tire store.  Perhaps these are meant to be abstractions of tires?

Tire fixed, at last.  If you have a choice, do not plan to spend time at the tire store on the day before a holiday weekend!

Running some errands, now that I'm not wondering if the tire will be flat when I come back out to the car.

Sunlit willows in front of a dark northern sky.

Grocery-store kalanchoes.



Jeanie said...

The books about demons are as effective as the reliable press about Trump -- the people who need to see it won't -- or won't believe it if they do.

Did you see the wonderful Keith Olbermann piece on Huffington Post. I love Keith but sometimes he rants. This time he doesn't and it's really quite spot on. Google Huffington Post and Olbermann -- it says something like sharing with Trump people. About five minutes. Of course, they wouldn't get it... but he's right.

I need orange said...

What has happened is incredibly scary. I can understand why those who have made this choice (for all of us, alas!) don't want to see the appallingness of what has happened..................................... And yet.......................