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interfluidity » Authority
More often than not, there is not so much cognitive dissonance. Most of us, most of the time, take a huge variety of conjectural “social facts” as given, condition our behavior as if they were true, and to the degree that we even give them a second thought, we believe them to be true. I log into my bank’s website, and check the balance of my account. Most of the time, I take the number presented as an authoritative representation of how much money I have “there”. I would prefer, quite strongly, that the number be millions larger, and my deposit balance at a bank is nothing more or less than what the bank acknowledges that it owes to me, so it is in a small way extraordinary that the bank and I are so willing to agree, despite diametrically opposed economic interests on the matter. But the miracle of authority is that it quells many disputes so thoroughly that parties don’t even imagine that there is any ambiguity or question to argue about. Authoritative information presents itself as factual, even when it (like a bank balance) has no external, empirical referent and is purely a social construction.
culture  ethics  argument  sociology  politics 
18 hours ago by kmt
The antidote to civilisational collapse - Open Future
I’ve always liked “War and Peace” where the two central figures are Napoleon and a Russian general called Kutuzov. Napoleon thinks you can control the whole world and make it your own. But Kutuzov, who everyone derides in the novel and who is in charge of defending Moscow, says “No, you can’t control the world because it’s chaos—but there are moments within the chaos that you can use for your own purpose”. That’s what politics is about. It’s exciting and dynamic. It’s got a narrative to it and, like good journalism, it responds to what’s happening.
adam-curtis  politics  argument  interview  power  journalism  neoliberalism 
2 days ago by kmt
Josh Gerstein on Twitter: ""Matthew Whitaker is no vice-consul to Siam. And Jeff Sessions did not depart for the other side of the planet by steamship, gravely ill, leaving no other Senate-confirmed official behind."… https://t.c
"Matthew Whitaker is no vice-consul to Siam. And Jeff Sessions did not depart
for the other side of the planet by steamship, gravely ill, leaving no other Senate-confirmed official behind. (..)
This is a court proceeding. Not musical chairs."
trump  whitaker  scotus  argument  lawyer  language 
2 days ago by gohai
The Fallacy of the ‘I Turned Out Fine’ Argument - The New York Times
[W]e fall victim to anecdote, rely on our availability heuristic (thereby dismissing all broader data to the contrary), dismiss alternate views, fail to learn and progress by engaging with a challenging idea.
logicalfallacy  argument 
8 days ago by toastednut
Econ Majors Graduate With a Huge Knowledge Gap - Bloomberg
What's needed is a mandatory course on ethics and the limits of knowledge.
reading  economics  teaching  ethics  academia  argument 
10 days ago by kmt
This Day in Labor History: August 11, 1911 - Lawyers, Guns & Money
On August 11, 1911, workers at the Watertown Arsenal in Watertown, Massachusetts walked off the job as the scientific management ideas of Frederick Winslow Taylor began to be applied to their work. This resistance of corporate micromanagement of work was a last ditch attempt by American industrial workers to remain masters of their own labor, even within the factory system that had already degraded their skills and independence.

Frederick Winslow Taylor was an aristocratic Philadelphian who after a few years working as a manual laborer, chose to dedicate his life to making industrial labor more efficient and streamlined. He began managing some Maine paper mills before starting his own efficiency practice in Philadelphia in 1893. His first big job was with Bethlehem Steel between 1898 and 1901, when he was forced out for clashing with other managers, a frequent problem for the bullheaded Taylor.
history  labour-movement  sources  argument  capitalism  politics 
12 days ago by kmt

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