All of tim3's Comments + Replies

"Or you're always choosing the right side."

The problem is that if you ever win an argument when you are wrong, subsequent arguments with anyone who has accepted your false conclusion leads to further errors. Furthermore, to avoid this, it is not enough to always choose the right side. You must be right about everything you convince your opponent of. Even the right conclusion can be supported by false evidence. Lastly, you will probably engage in arguments that have no right side or conclusion. Such arguments should not be won or lost - rather, bo... (read more)

I think your post can be boiled down to simply, "If you always win arguments, you are collecting errors."

This part isn't true.

Perhaps. My experience was similar to yours in many respects, but very early on it became clear to me that I was a member of a very small club. We were subject to standardized testing starting in, I believe, third grade, and were delivered results that compared us to hundreds of thousands of other kids across the country. It is hard not to feel "gifted" when you are given a very officious looking document with a government letterhead and the number "99" on it (the primary metric of academic achievement was a perc... (read more)

"Because giftedness is not to be talked about, no one tells high-IQ children explicitly, forcefully and repeatedly that their intellectual talent is a gift. That they are not superior human beings, but lucky ones. That the gift brings with it obligations to be worthy of it."

Thankfully. High-IQ children know they are high-IQ; if they can't figure out how smart they are, they aren't very smart. They don't need to be told they're special, though. We need people who live intelligently rather than live for the purpose of being intelligent.

Telling a... (read more)

I think I'd consider the eponymous hero of Stephen R. Donaldson's Chronicles of Thomas Covenant a rationalist character - at least in the first book, Lord Foul's Bane. Covenant is struck by a car and wakes up in a fantasy world. Accordingly, he refuses to believe it is real, and most of his decisions stem from that, including a rather horrible one that has far-reaching consequences throughout the first series. What compounds the whole situation is his debilitating leprosy. Donaldson created a very plausible depiction of a real person stranded in a fantasti... (read more)

I don't have an argument here; rather, I just want to see if I understand each position taken in the dialogue. After all, it would be a dreadful waste of time to argue one way or the other against our three musketeers while completely misunderstanding some key point. As far as I can tell, these are the essential arguments being made:

Yancy's position: that fairness is a rational (mathematical) system. There is no moral factor; rather than "to each according to his need," it is "to each according to the equation." This presumes fairness i... (read more)