On 07 May 2012, at 19:42, John Clark wrote:
On Sun, May 6, 2012 Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>I'm not an engineer.
>> I know, that's part of the problem.
> I think it's part of the solution. As the saying goes, if all you
have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
It's far easier to get a reputation as a good philosopher than a
good engineer because you can't fake it. If a engineer is full of
shit there is no way to hide it, the bridge falls down or the laptop
catches on fire or the power grid dies and plunges the nation into
darkness and all the world knows he's a idiot, but a philosopher can
hide his ineptitude by saying things that can never be proved or
disproved in his lifetime or expressing platitudes in pretentious
language that sounds much deeper than they really are or by
expressing his personal preferences as if they were universal truths
and not just a matter of taste.
To keep his job a engineer needs to be right, or at least not dead
wrong, nearly 100% of the time because if he is dead wrong people
could quite literally end up dead, but a philosopher can never be
right and still get tenure. When a engineer makes a blunder it's
front page news but when a philosopher makes a blunder few know or
care and he never misses a paycheck. The engineer has by far the
This is because since 1500 years rigor is simply not allowed in
philosophy and theology. It is mainly political. In a part of academy
it seems that results throwing doubt on the Aristotelian dogma are
simply ignored. We are still prehistorical in theology, for reason of
control, not for reason of reason. Enlightenment was half
enlightenment. And it is grave: if an engineer is wrong, problems can
be quickly fixed, but if you are wrong in the human sciences, problems
can last for millennia.
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