[ExI] book review

spike at rainier66.com spike at rainier66.com
Sat Jan 8 15:08:53 UTC 2022



…> On Behalf Of William Flynn Wallace via extropy-chat
Subject: Re: [ExI] book review


>…So, Spike, did you find any of Blueprints' ideas objectionable?  bill w



Eh, not really, not so much ideas specifically objectionable, no. In general the author carries a set of assumptions that differ from my own, similar to the guy I met at the hotel who was reading it.  This is perfectly OK, and preferrable, for many, or perhaps most of my favorite writers do.  Reading from another perspective clarifies my own perspective.  It was a little like listening to NPR about 20 years ago.  I liked NPR before they went kinda crazy in the last five to ten years.


Let us take a trivial example please, one which isn’t a book but a film most of us have seen at some point or another.  Consider It’s a Wonderful Life, the Christmas classic with Jimmy Stewart.  One can view it as the stingy old capitalist scrooge character Mr. Potter who wanted to own everything (and did a terrific impersonation of Simon bar Sinister) vs the gentle and kind communist George Bailey, who just wanted everyone to have a piece of the pie, to each according to the Marxist ideal.  Capitalism vs communism story with the commies being the good guys ja?


So… why did I like that one?  Because it promoted the kind of communism which doesn’t involve government.  In Wonderful Life, government never came into the picture at all, other than kind and gentle Bert the cop and the feds who were coming to get George before the community rallied to cover his debt.  If communities find a way to work together to take care of everybody, to supply to each according to their need without compulsion, then you don’t need government involvement.  Then by all means, do go right ahead.  If you get that working, I will move to Bedford Falls and happily live out my life there.  Both Bailey and Potter were capitalists.  I saw the two characters as representing government in a way, and it was libertarianism vs Potter’s totalitarian rule.


So… we see every work of fiction thru our own filters.  This goes for non-fiction such as Blueprint as well.  As I read it, I couldn’t help imagining the conflicted insurance agent I met at the hotel as the author.  That made me smile to imagine  someone a book expressing one’s internal struggle with cognitive dissonance.






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