Category: Education

Rhetoric, Politics

Gloria Steinem is an Idiot

Steinem argued in the 1980s that opposing abortion is actually a secret form of Nazism, and she repeats the argument in an interview below: Well, the new generation of reader is instructing me by saying that these essays are still relevant …. on a more serious note, to put it mildly, is why Hitler was …

Culture, Education

Why do Academics believe stupid ideas?

I’ve wondered this for a while. Why do folks with doctoral degrees, who look down on others for their stupidity, nevertheless reject the value of IQ tests? Why do academics who believe in the power of ethnic solidarity and identity politics also believe that human beings are born as blank slates? Why do academics who …

Rhetoric, Dialectic, Culture, Education

Words and Rhetoric

When using rhetoric or dialectic, your currency is words, they’re backed by definitions which reflect concepts or terms, and they’re used to buy emotions and thoughts. When you’re using dialectic, you want to be sure that you and your conversation partners agree about definitions. For instance, I was a part of a classroom management discussion …

Basics, Education

Learning to Read

The abysmal truth is that few read before or during college: “The desire to appeal to incoming students who have rarely if ever read an adult book on their own also leads selection committees to choose low-grade “accessible” works that are presumed to appeal to “book virgins” who will flee actual college-level reading. Since common …

Education, Intellectual Virtues

Four Questions to Instantly Improve Your Reading

Mortimer Adler says that the core of good reading can be expressed in these four questions the reader asks a piece of writing: 1. WHAT IS THE BOOK ABOUT AS A WHOLE? You must try to discover the leading theme of the book, and how the author develops this theme in an orderly way by …

Rhetoric, Writing, Dialectic, Education

Overcome Writer’s Block: The Common Topics

Writer’s Block You’ve had it, I’ve had it. It’s not pleasant. As far as I can tell, there four reasons for writer’s block: Trying to sound profound (This is part of the game in fiction and poetry.) Poor research An inability to make an argument Nothing to actually say Bonus Reason Five: You’re just procrastinating. …

Rhetoric, Education, Philosophy, Politics

Laugh Tracks

I don’t watch the Big Bang Theory and I intentionally don’t watch shows with laugh tracks. BBT has a laugh track and I just decided to watch a bit of it without the laugh track: Very little to none of that is funny. But why are there laugh tracks? Well, they work. People laugh out …

Christianity, Education

The Case of Evolution and Education

Too long won’t read:In my experience, evolutionary theory holds a weird pride of place as the litmus test of a good education in common conversation. When one is discovered to be religious, they are often asked, “but you believe in evolution…don’t you?” Darwinian theory and its modern permutations have their uses, but those uses are …

Basics, Dialectic, Education

On Why We Need Logic

John Henry Newman was talking about his own era, but his thoughts are relevant today: It were well if none remained boys all their lives; but what is more common than the sight of grown men, talking on political or moral or religious subjects, in that offhand, idle way, which we signify by the word …

Ethics, Education, Self-Mastery, Philosophy

Socrates to Critobulus

[37]“It appears, Socrates, that you are the sort of friend to help me if I am in any way qualified to make friends: but if not, you won’t make up a story to help me.”“How do you think I shall help you best, Critobulus, by false praise, or by urging you to try to be …