Sickening ignorance

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  • #26
loseyourname
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Nereid said:
Those eucalypts in CA, they're native to the US, right? And Al Gore invented the internet, right (or maybe it was Bill Gates or Steve Jobs)? The first stock market in the world is Wall Street, OK? Columbus discovered America, yeah? Baseball and basketball were invented in the good ol' USofA, of course!
Baseball was invented in Hoboken, NJ, birthplace of Frank Sinatra. One square mile of Miller Time, according to the billboard coming off the 3.
 
  • #27
Nereid
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I learned of this only yesterday .. did knowledge kill Iris Chang? If she had chosen to remain ignorant, would she be still alive today?
 
  • #28
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Les Sleeth said:
It's not the best idea, Hitler already tried that. Don't forget, even stupid people are fellow human beings. Sometimes they haven't had much of an opportunity to learn, and sometimes they don't have the mental skills to attain what comes so easy to others. Besides, being well-educated doesn't mean one is intelligent.

How do we teach people to think? I am not an educator, so I can't do anything about this, but I would love to design courses, starting in grade school, meant to teach people how to think. Not WHAT to think, just the rules of evidence, logic, and reason.

I can't see how it helps the situation to just condescend. If we are so smart, then let's figure out a way to improve things.
I enver said anytihng about being educated, i was talking about stupidity. I've met plenty of 'educated' morons.

You can't teach people how to think, thats the problem. Because when you teach them to think your way, then they are bound to draw your conclusions.

Example, a story about Niels Bohr:

Sir Ernest Rutherford, President of the Royal Academy, and recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physics, related the following story.

Some time ago I received a call from a colleague. He was about to give a student a zero for his answer to a physics question, while the student claimed a perfect score. The instructor and the student agreed to an impartial arbiter, and I was selected.

I read the examination question: "Show how it is possible to determine the height of a tall building with the aid of a barometer." The student had answered: "Take the barometer to the top of the building, attach a long rope to it, lower it to the street, and then bring it up, measuring the length of the rope. The length of the rope is the height of the building."

The student really had a strong case for full credit since he had really answered the question completely and correctly! On the other hand, if full credit were given, it could well contribute to a high grade in his physics course and certify competence in physics, but the answer did not confirm this.

I suggested that the student have another try.

I gave the student six minutes to answer the question with the warning that the answer should show some knowledge of physics. At the end of five minutes, he hadn't written anything. I asked if he wished to give up, but he said he had many answers to this problem; he was just thinking of the best one. I excused myself for interrupting him and asked him to please go on.

In the next minute, he dashed off his answer, which read: "Take the barometer to the top of the building and lean over the edge of the roof. Drop the barometer, timing its fall with a stopwatch. Then, using the formula x=0.5*a*t^2, calculate the height of the building." At this point, I asked my colleague if he would give up. He conceded, and gave the student almost full credit.

While leaving my colleague's office, I recalled that the student had said that he had other answers to the problem, so I asked him what they were.

"Well," said the student, "there are many ways of getting the height of a tall building with the aid of a barometer.

For example, you could take the barometer out on a sunny day and measure the height of the barometer, the length of its shadow, and the length of the shadow of the building, and by the use of simple proportion, determine the height of the building."

"Fine," I said, "and others?"

"Yes," said the student, "there is a very basic measurement method you will like.

In this method, you take the barometer and begin to walk up the stairs. As you climb the stairs, you mark off the length of the barometer along the wall. You then count the number of marks, and this will give you the height of the building in barometer units." "A very direct method."

"Of course. If you want a more sophisticated method, you can tie the barometer to the end of a string, swing it as a pendulum, and determine the value of g [gravity] at the street level and at the top of the building. From the difference between the two values of g, the height of the building, in principle, can be calculated."

"On this same tack, you could take the barometer to the top of the building, attach a long rope to it, lower it to just above the street, and then swing it as a pendulum. You could then calculate the height of the building by the period of the precession".

"Finally," he concluded, "there are many other ways of solving the problem. Probably the best," he said, "is to take the barometer to the basement and knock on the superintendent's door. When the superintendent answers, you speak to him as follows: 'Mr. Superintendent, here is a fine barometer. If you will tell me the height of the building, I will give you this barometer."

At this point, I asked the student if he really did not know the conventional answer to this question. He admitted that he did, but said that he was fed up with high school and college instructors trying to teach him how to think.

The name of the student was Niels Bohr." (1885-1962) Danish Physicist; Nobel Prize 1922; best known for proposing the first 'model' of the atom with protons & neutrons, and various energy state of the surrounding electrons -- the familiar icon of the small nucleus circled by three elliptical orbits ... but more significantly, an innovator in Quantum Theory.
The point being you can't teach people how to think. They're born the way they are, and we're stuck with them. For better or worse, usually worse.
 
  • #29
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I did not know where yoga was invented, and personally I don't care. Just call me one of those ingnorant Americans who agrees that everything originated in the US.
 
  • #30
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mattmns said:
I did not know where yoga was invented, and personally I don't care. Just call me one of those ingnorant Americans who agrees that everything originated in the US.

Ignorant American!!
 
  • #31
Les Sleeth
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franznietzsche said:
You can't teach people how to think, thats the problem. Because when you teach them to think your way, then they are bound to draw your conclusions.

Example, a story about Niels Bohr:



The point being you can't teach people how to think. They're born the way they are, and we're stuck with them. For better or worse, usually worse.
You are quite wrong about this. People can be taught to think with the right program and the right teacher. Your Niels Bohr story doesn't prove anything except that ONE SINGLE PERSON wasn't willing to think. Why do you think there are schools? Is it because we just want to waste our time trying to teach all the morons to think?

Who do you believe is most at fault for why education fails to teach people to think? Aside from the fact that there are no courses teaching it early on, it couldn't be because all the genius thinkers who design education courses haven't figured out that people don't learn very much through rote memory, competition, and test taking could it?

It's easy to act superior. It takes a lot more intelligence to understand the human condition in relation to human potential, and then design a solution to make things better.
 
  • #32
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I knew yoga was from in India. Geronimo was it's inventor.
 
  • #33
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Les Sleeth said:
You are quite wrong about this. People can be taught to think with the right program and the right teacher. Your Niels Bohr story doesn't prove anything except that ONE SINGLE PERSON wasn't willing to think. Why do you think there are schools? Is it because we just want to waste our time trying to teach all the morons to think?

Who do you believe is most at fault for why education fails to teach people to think? Aside from the fact that there are no courses teaching it early on, it couldn't be because all the genius thinkers who design education courses haven't figured out that people don't learn very much through rote memory, competition, and test taking could it?

It's easy to act superior. It takes a lot more intelligence to understand the human condition in relation to human potential, and then design a solution to make things better.

Actually Bohr was the one who was thinking. So your comment there makes no sense.

Schools are there to impart information. However the schools in this country are a systematic failure. They are assembly line style education that tries tofit everyone into one model, and in so doing fails almost everyone. It fails the people who are too stupid to get it, because they just fall farther and farther behind, and it fails the people who are smart enough because it holds them back (i've got a real anger issue with that right now since high school was a complete waste of my time, much ranting and ravinglately).

Schools are not designed to teach us to think, they are designed to cram information down our throats, and they fail at even that. The fact of the matter is there are incredibly few teachers qualified to be teaching despite whatever standards they do meet,mostof them are not any good. This is simply because the people teaching are the ones who enjoy not, and those arenot necessarily the ones who are good at it.

You cannot take a class in 'thinking.' The only to learn that is by example. Notice how the best phycisists learned from the best physicists. Feynman was a student of Wheeler. Nash was at princeton with einstein. The best minds learn from the best minds by example. The average teacher isno where near being the best mind, and is not qualified to teach people how to think. The education system is not oriented to teach people how to think, only to teach them information, and as i have said it is a failure at that.

A complete reform of the education system would be necessary for it to be even worth half of the money that is wasted on it. but the problem would remain that there virtually no qualified teachers in this country. Every school has one or two out of 30. And those are of the schools i've seen, which were all in middle/upper class suburbs. in the inner cities, there are even fewer good teachers. The educational system, asdictated by politicians is a failure, and always will be as long as it is dictated by politicians.

There are too many people from the leve intellectual mediocrity who are unqualified to understand what they're talking about running the educational system. Add to that problem the liberal idea of progress by limiting disciplinary power of teachers, talking control away from the ground level and giving it too administrations, and there is no hope of even the faintest light at the end of the tunnel.
 
  • #34
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klusener
I suppose you all know yoga, well I went to a local class just to see how Americans do it, being Indian myself, and the "teacher" starts by saying "you all should be glad, because you are going to learn an All-american exercise technique today" at that moment, I was really weighing the pros and cons of going to the front and punching that guy in the face. But i restrained myself and asked him what he meant by all-american, he responds that yoga is american and made by americans .. holy ****, i was thinking at that moment, how stupid can this guy be...
To me this "teacher" sounds more arrogantly racist, with an inferiority complex, than ignorant. He does not represent the majority of Americans. I offer that violence is the antithesis to yoga.

Be glad that you did not react with base instinct. What would the world be with everyone lashing out physically when just a knowing smile and fixed gaze can suffice?
 
  • #35
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Loren Booda said:
klusenerTo me this "teacher" sounds more arrogantly racist, with an inferiority complex, than ignorant. He does not represent the majority of Americans. I offer that violence is the antithesis to yoga.

Be glad that you did not react with base instinct. What would the world be with everyone lashing out physically when just a knowing smile and fixed gaze can suffice?

Actually Loren, he really does represent the majorityof Americans. I'm sad to say it, but even in universities, people are really like that. Its sickening.

However, its possible that he just represents the majority of people, and people in tohercountries are equally ignorant, but i can't speak for them, but i can say, that the majority of americans are that bad, though not all about the same things.
 
  • #36
mattmns said:
I did not know where yoga was invented, and personally I don't care.
Good point, well argued. Anyway, ignorance is more fun than knowledge - any idiot knows that.

mattmns said:
...everything originated in the US.
I think you'll find that was Pandora's box. In any case, the US itself was invented by the Italians (Columbus), English (founding fathers), and French (Liberty etc).
 
  • #37
Loren Booda said:
klusenerTo me this "teacher" sounds more arrogantly racist, with an inferiority complex, than ignorant. He does not represent the majority of Americans. I offer that violence is the antithesis to yoga.
That feller can teach me yoga or politics or whatever he likes any day of the week. In fact he should have his own show on telly. Hell, why isn't he running for office?

Loren Booda said:
Be glad that you did not react with base instinct.
Don't diss baser instincts. Hell, I love that bit where she crosses her legs :rolleyes:

Loren Booda said:
What would the world be with everyone lashing out physically when just a knowing smile and fixed gaze can suffice?
You mean like this: :smile: ?
 

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