[ExI] article highly recommended

spike at rainier66.com spike at rainier66.com
Sun Sep 2 21:03:31 UTC 2018



From: extropy-chat <extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org> On Behalf Of William Flynn Wallace
Sent: Sunday, September 2, 2018 1:11 PM
To: ExI chat list <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org>
Subject: [ExI] article highly recommended


Coincidentally, I have been reading Jane Austen, where the word 'condescension' is used in the original sense of treating an inferior like an equal - a desired act.  





bill w


Thanks for that BillW.


Jane Austen had so much fun with how the old timers got so tangled up with the notion of there being different classes of people, and that this was determined by how much property one owned.


Think of the irony: in Austen’s day there was the common assumption that there were different classes of people.  To treat someone of lower rank as an equal was a compliment to the lower ranking person and a kindness on the part of with higher social rank.  Today we reject the notion of social rank, so to act condescending is to imply that one is higher ranking but one is reaching down to treat a lower-ranking person as an equal.


Oh that is a fun paradox, but consider for a moment those who follow the big-name scientists and such.  We go to a schmooze with them, work up the courage, go up and introduce oneself.  In the science world (and math (and really every technical field)) there durn sure is something very much equivalent to the old social rank, but now you have to earn it rather than being born into it.  Nobody gives a hoot about Richard Feynman’s son or Isaac Asimov’s son (both of whom are nice guys but they aren’t their fathers.)  When we go to a science schmooze and meet a science god, a lot of them will treat me like their equal.  This is a perfect example of a great form of condescension, for they really are my superior in every way I care about, and oh that feels good.  I thank those who do that.


Two excellent recent examples: Frank Drake and Sal Khan.  Both of those guys do justly, live smartly and walk humbly.



-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.extropy.org/pipermail/extropy-chat/attachments/20180902/31963694/attachment.html>

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list