The War on Smart - Steph's Take
I know I am late to the party on this, but I thought I would throw in my ideas anyway.
I have gone back and read everyone's posts and I agree with points in all of them.
I also agree with a lot of the gist of the original article if not the exact facts. Smart is hard and human beings are notoriously lazy, so we tend to choose the easy road rather than the best road. Is this new, no, but it is true. It is also causing a lot of problems for us and the planet and it will get worse if we don't change. Unfortunately although I think that was her original point but as Lynn said the author kind of wanders around and away from it in the article which ends up being not very coherent.
As Andrew says the internet and social networking and cell phones and so on are creating a 'democratization of information' which means 'average' opinions are heard much more now when we used to just hear mostly from 'experts'. I think this is both good and bad. In some cases it means people are more informed and involved, in other cases it means they are mis-informed, sometimes dangerously so. I know for example there is a lot of bad medical information out there that can cause major problems if followed. I am hoping that overall the good out weights the bad but I don't know if that is true or not.
I do however think there is somewhat of a 'war on smart' in that some people in positions of (apparent) authority are using TV/Internet etc to manipulate the less informed/intelligent in order to further their own agenda and aims and of course to get money. (See Fox News/Pat Roberson/Glen Beck etc) I think some intelligent people have to figure out a way to fight that but I don't know how we would do it yet. It really saddens me to see some of the things that folks with buy into. I hope we can find some way to fix it.
I'm going to end with this from Stephen Colbert which I think defines well what is often being used in the 'war on smart'.
- by steph
- in News