Attribution – The Fatal Flaw

Nice article linked by Johnnie Moore. A New Yorker article by James Surowiecki, via Rob May (Business Pundit) whose subscription newsletter I really must read more closely and often.

You can see my comment on Johhnie’s post, but this is another cause vs explanation confusion, where attributing cause looks like reason, but is really just culturally evolved short-hand for more contextual, complex (emergent) reality

7 thoughts on “Attribution – The Fatal Flaw”

  1. I’ve been reading J.S. Mill, particularly “on Liberty”. he might have applauded my little suggestion about the debate between Chompsky and Sowle. I haven’t gotten to the part (and I really hope there is such a part) where he shows just how someone does decide what his beliefs are. It would seem that suspension of belief is a rather unnatural place to alight.

    There is something wonderful about the writing of seventeenth and eighteenth century writers.

  2. ooops that would be eighteenth and nineteenth, but I suppose it all depends on where you start.

  3. Hi Alice,

    You’re ahead of me with Mill Alice. Must get round to him. Currently working my way through Dostoevsky’s “Karamazov Brothers” – 1880. Only got about 25% through at the last attempt, even though I found it witty, the plot and characters get quite complex and hard to follow without “quality time” to devote to it.

    Just spent a long weekend in the Great Smokey Mountains, some great natural country, and did about 10 miles of the Apallachian Trail one day, all above 1 mile altitude. Actually saw Black Bear as well as Deer in the forest. Made a brief mistake and dropped into a hell on earth known as Gatlinburg to fill the car with gas. Talk about Disneyfication. Jaw dropping mock-Alpine naffness. The real thing was good though, only snag is the 99% forestation; means you rarely get to see a view.

  4. Last night we had five deer visit the area just outside our kitchen window. Lots of views here on the eastern side of the Sierra range, as ansel adams called it “the range of light”.

  5. Very good.

    We’ve certainly seen the deer of in the distance at the edge of fields, or looking startled at the road-side, but it was interesting to have a group of them them just step out into the clearing where we were sitting in eating our picnic

  6. They can be pretty fearless. they seem to know there are areas where they are protected. Unfortunately they don’t seem to understand the destruction moving vehicles can cause and at night they just run out in front of them.

    Speaking of disneyfication, did you see my post about my trip to Tintern abbey? There seems to be a vast difference between the Brit’s view of historical sites and ours.

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