The economic struggle of this country was something that i really never paid a significant amount of attention to. Of course, I read about it, absorbed the information and understood it (mostly, kinda sorta) but the real fact was it wasn't really that important to me at the time. I didn't need to know, because it wasn't affecting me that much, and so I was mostly indifferent. With that smooth segway, lets move on to this weeks politics lecture.
I'm a big fan of Empiricism. I didn't know that the term existed before this week, but certainly I was a big fan of the underlying concept well before I knew the definition. The idea that you don't believe in something unless it is available to you sensually (which sounds dodgy) is one that can fit into a world that intends to progress into the future. Empiricism allows experimentation, an idea that seems to be wildy discouraged among the God fearin' members of society, which sadly, still has a very significant impact on today's world. If we were all to embrace Empiricism, in one form or another, and the red tape were to come down, then there is no measure to what the human species could achieve.
This brings me onto a hugely controversial subject regarding experimentation. During my university interview process, I was asked to discuss, with a group, a certain scenario. The general assumption was that this would weed out the weak and ugly, in order to allow the confident and powerful people progress to higher learning, where they would gather the skills needed to rule the world one day maybe. I still think it was to see who was a dick and who wasn't, but that's just me.
The question posed to us in this little debate-a-thon, was simple: "Do you think a screening process to see if an unborn child has down syndrome would be morally viable?"
Now...lets make one thing perfectly clear. I respect, and am a strong supporter, of the rights of disabled people to live, work, and pretty much do whatever they want in the world without being bothered, but my answer came under a lot of scrutiny, when i took in a deep breath, and unleashed my bombshell. "Of course" I had agreed with pre-birth screening. The main reason being that if we can rid future people of these life altering conditions, then why wouldn't we? Why would we stop progress? The one answer that came amidst the gasps was "Because its morally wrong. God wouldn't like it"
Maybe not, but considering I don't believe in him, i think him and I can call it quits.
This is why I like Empiricism. People are able to use these experiments without some justice force telling us the "big guy won't like it".
Basically, "Empiricism leads to the scientific method and empirical method leads to highly effective technological advance"
A good lecture on Empiricism: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BC6DNdkt0IU.
It also says stuff about Hume, who as we all know thought of a bit of a step up from Empiricism, with a bit more added assumption.
Next up in the batting cages: A Priori. Buh. BUH. It seems non negotiable. Or rather, half of it seems non negotiable. The half which is concordant with Empiricism, that is to say, provisional ideas. As it were. The trancendent part is a little silly. Mainly because I'm an atheist, and the idea that God might exist is laughable. Therefore, it is always laughable. See what I did? That's A priori right? I could later turn into a religious person, which would be...good?
A good example of A priori reasoning in the press lately would be the furthering of the Guantanamo cases. The idea the geoverment seems to have used is that:
Extremist Muslims attack America
Therefore all Muslims are terrorists
That guy looks like a Muslim
Oh, He is a Muslim
Therefore he is a terrorist.
As for Idealists...well some of them are just plain nuts.
In the second part of the lecture, we focused on the ideas behind economics. A large part of the section was devoted to the Karl Marx contradiction to capitalism. I like Karl Marx. Not because of his ideals, but because his name sounds like Groucho Marx, and that makes me laugh.
Karl Marx had a strategy, that I will lovingly copy and paste from the Winchester Journalism site, simply because it is pretty concise. Also funny.
- WORKER GETS PAID £1 TO PRODUCE A WIDGET
- WIDGET SELLS FOR £2 (THE ‘MARKET PRICE’ – ADAM SMITH)
- CAPITALIST MAKES £1 PROFITCAPITALIST SPENDS THIS ON THE STATE
- CAPITALIST WASTES SOME ON PLATED WIDGETS, TOP HATS, ETC
- CAPITALIST INVESTS SOME IN ANOTHER WIDEGET FACTORY
WORKER GOES TO SHOP TO TRY AND BUY A WIDGET
- OH DEAR – WIDGETS COST £2. WORKER ONLY GOT £1 (SEE LINE ONE)
- WIDGET REMAINS UNSOLD – IT’S A WIDGET CRUNCH
- MASS PANICWIDGET FACTORY CLOSES – WIDGET WORKER EVEN MORE ALIENATED
- WIDGET WORKER THROWS OFF DELUSIONS
- VIOLENT REVOLUTION LED BY LOCAL PSYCHOPATH
- CAPITALISTS SHOT DEAD, ETC
- END OF CAPITALIST SYSTEM
- MASSIVE BOOZE UP/TEMPORARY MOMENT OF MISPLACED OPTIMISM
- UNFORTUNATE ANIMAL FARM TYPE SITUATION ENDS BOOZE UP
- CAPITALIST SYSTEM RE-ESTABLISHED UNDER ANOTHER NAME
Now we've all had this friday night.