RE: virus: In defense of heroes and fans

Robin Faichney (
Thu, 4 Dec 1997 22:15:39 -0000

> From: Gifford, Nate
> Its pretty hard to do philosophy when you're
> starving to death ... although Karl Marx seemed to manage it.
If that's true it's highly ironic, as Marx said that material
circumstances are totally deterministic. That was one
of his major contributions, countering the many relatively
idealistic (in the loose sense) ideologies of the time.

> It seems to
> me to be born in a circumstance where you are unable to develop a
> talent is
> equivalent to being born without the talent.
That equation is context dependent. Can you really say
that to be born in a particular circumstance is enough
to preclude that development?

> The point being that the
> majority of people on earth today are simply not literate enough to
> churn
> out mind-blowing stuff.
Not right now, they're not. Maybe. So what?

> Once you have talent, and opportunity, you still need desire.
> For
> instance people tell me that my wife used to be a very talented piano
> player. She certainly has the time an money for lessons, but she says
> she
> got burnt out when she was 18 or so and does not want to play anymore.
> The
> same could be said for whatever other talent you wish to pick to
> generate
> "mind blowing stuff".
The fact that something doesn't happen doesn't mean
it couldn't have done so.

> So to say the people who generate the mind blowing stuff we all
> enjoy ... like Bertrand Russel or Aldous Huxley, or Douglas Hofstadter
> are
> not the vast exceptions to the rule is to <in my book> overvalue the
> great
> amount of pure SHIT we all have to wade through in order to get our
> mind's
> blown.
Sorry, don't understand your point here. But the
Huxley that's been discussed here recently is TH,
not A (though I believe they were related).

> It seems to me Robin, that you've been infected by some kind of
> egalitarian meme that is distorting your vision.
Ah, but is the distortion beneficial or detrimental?

> I suggest that you
> alternate reading Jackie Collins and Willa Cather until you can tell
> the
> difference. Alternatively perhaps there is no reason for me to go to
> the
> Rockies to ski when there is snow and hills here in Ohio.
To say that things are different is not to say that they
could not have been or become similar. Misleading
analogies notwithstanding. To say that people are
potentially equal is not to say that they already are
so (in any particular sphere -- it is an item of faith
for me that, in general terms, everyone is equal --
if that makes me an egalitarian -- well, I've always
thought I was, anyway).