Inroads into Taleb

Mentioned in my previous post that I was actively catching-up on reading Nicholas Nassim Taleb whose best-selling Black Swan I already felt I knew from secondary references, and whose later (Antifragile) arguments (and the person) I was coming to know through social media and blogging links. As mentioned, I had received Antifragile first, but had … Continue reading “Inroads into Taleb”

Taking Care with Taleb

Skimming my blog dashboard I find I have several, a handful, of draft pieces with reference to Nassim Nicholas Taleb and things he’s published or linked to, that I’ve not quite had the courage to post yet. Like many, I find his argumentation style is so ruthless, he suffers no fools gladly, that even short supportive responses … Continue reading “Taking Care with Taleb”

Baloney Generator #2 – The Most Stunning Result.

I first mentioned “the baloney generator” back in May 2003 – actually in this hand-crafted-html (!) review of Steven Pinker’s Blank Slate in December 2002. “The conscious mind — the self or soul — is a spin doctor, not the commander in chief.” The accusation being that the rational mind generates narratives – any old … Continue reading “Baloney Generator #2 – The Most Stunning Result.”


I’ve been using parts of the verb “moderate” in ambiguous contexts recently, but deliberately because, whatever its etymology, its different uses are surely related at root. Everything in moderation is a kind of plea for moderation, a middle-way between extremes – a good example here on dietary “fads” from Julian Baggini. He concludes – in … Continue reading “Moderation”

Poisoning the Environment

Just a quickie, a hold-that-thought post (prompted by the US Glyphosate court verdict, but not specifically about that): Two things – herbicides and pesticides, and controlling vermin. Humans are an intelligent evolved species. We didn’t get where we are by allowing the environment to take over our lives – we legitimately manage our environment in … Continue reading “Poisoning the Environment”

Changing Your Mind

A pet hate of mine is “rational” people who see the point of a rational argument as being to change someone’s mind, to convince someone of something. A bonkers idea at any time, not to mention a complete waste of time if you think the person you are trying to convince isn’t being rational anyway. … Continue reading “Changing Your Mind”