September 18th, 2021

Via Twitter

Unlike Karl Popper, I have not read Adorno or Habermas.

Don't know if this is a genuine document, but "intelligence-destroying university education" is an interesting turn of phrase for 1970:

(no subject)

Basically, on the other side of the world we are seeing essentially something where the winners of the 20th century — the US and Western Europe — have gotten, like, one way of thinking about it is civilizational diabetes, you know, so fat and happy at the end of history that they had sort of invent internal conflicts and drama to make things meaningful again, and now they have; they've set out fire and they are burning down the house...

...I think, in many ways the 21st century is a mirror of the 20th. One of them is, you know, if it was about capitalist West and socialist East, it's sort of reversing. Now, in many ways, you could say the new political spectrum of the world is something where the US is at the left, Europe is center-left; India, Israel, they are center-right, and China is far-right.

— Balaji Srinivasan, from a conversation with Sam Harris

Civilizational diabetes is a great metaphor!

(no subject)

A weekend essay in today's Times.

It's rather dull; but what's interesting is how articles of this kind (the subject and the space dedicated to it) are still possible in the Times (probably not in the Guardian); how ignorant of the subject the author thinks his readers to be; and the self-unaware way in which the article is focused on the US, although the American bug has already widely infested Britain.