Rich In Wisdom Dept.


Frank Rich's op-ed reminds me of two conversations I've had recently.

Conversation The First was with a former boss of mine. We were eating lunch together, and when he lamented the above-mention rise of the MBA I agreed completely. It was not that the MBA was a Bad Thing, but that it had become a one-for-one substitute for an education that was, in theory anyway, intended to introduce people to the idea that there might well be other things in life than just making money. (The problem may well be that there is no way to formalize a person's introduction to such concepts.)

Conversation The Second was earlier today, with another friend, about how our education involves all the wrong concepts delivered at the wrong time. I've long felt that it's best to teach logic and skeptical thinking right from the beginning alongside the ABCs and the 123s — not later on as some elective that's maybe a prerequisite to a philosophy or computer science course. Some of the most valuable and important skills we could be teaching people are languishing as third-order exotica.

We don't teach this stuff, and as a result all the things that we could be better aware of because of it — like temporal separations between cause and effect — constantly smack us in the face. What, you didn't think that gambling with derivatives wouldn't eventually blow up in everyone's face and cause financial chaos? Evidently someone was never told about the What If Everyone Did That rule. Or they did hear about it, but were too busy to care since they were working out their newest end-run around the SEC.


Tags: dharma links skepticism




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