Intellectuals choose correctness over consensus

Related to Identity, IQ, and Incoherence of the Alt-Right Intellectuals care more about correctness (or what they perceive as being correct) than consensus; for collectivist and identity-driven movements, it’s reversed. For example, Francis Fukuyama, considered one of the intellectual ‘founders’ of neoconservatism, went from in 2001 ‘co-signing William Kristol’s September 20, 2001 letter to President… Continue reading Intellectuals choose correctness over consensus

Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, Part 7

Part 6 Nerd mannerisms and appropriations, especially in pop culture and on Instagram, where pretty women donning faux glasses post memes about social isolation, have become the ‘new normal’, and words like ‘normie’ have become pejorative. Nowadays everyone wants to be the ‘smartest person in the room’, not the most outgoing or popular. But ironically,… Continue reading Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, Part 7

Our morally ambiguous times

Years ago in a philosophy class I posed the question of whether it was more virtuous to have never sinned or to have sinned and then reformed. The evidence suggests the latter, as redemption and America’s culture of authenticity have become increasingly intertwined. ‘Authenticity culture’ celebrates individualism, particularity intellectual endeavors (such as stock trading or… Continue reading Our morally ambiguous times

Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, Part 6

In part 5 of the series on Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, I outline the table of contents of the section on intellectualism. Intellectualism is how you become a part of the process and the national debate, rather than merely a spectator. It’s a common misconception that to be ingratiated you must conform, be ordinary, but… Continue reading Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, Part 6

Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, Part 5 (intellectualism)

Continuing on the wealth, individualism, and intellectualism series… Part 1,2,3,4 The final pillar is intellectualism. Thanks to recent economic trends, Web 2.0, ‘nerd culture’, the growing importance of STEM, ‘esoteric celebrities‘, long-form journalism, as well as the elevation and idolization of intellectuals in public life, particularity for STEM fields, and recent groundbreaking discoveries and progress… Continue reading Wealth, Intellectualism, and Individualism, Part 5 (intellectualism)

Intellectualism as a ‘Passport’

In 2015, almost daily, I would check Scott’s blog to see what weird, new social ‘theory’ he had devised but right now, as 2016 winds to a close, it seems things have stagnated to some extent. It’s no one’s fault, really, but even the smartest people will eventually run out of things to say, as… Continue reading Intellectualism as a ‘Passport’

Cambrian explosion’ of intellectualism

One question is: why learn advanced mathematics? This is related to the is-ought problem, as posed by Hume. Problems in differential geometry can be difficult and time-consuming , unlike simple calculus, and are best done by computer, not by hand. A single tensor, as found in general relativity, may have dozens of components…writing them out… Continue reading Cambrian explosion’ of intellectualism

‘Culture Wars’ give way to ‘Shared Narratives’

As I explain in The Genius of Ross Douthat, partisanship and ‘culture wars’ have given way to ‘shared narratives and themes’ (existential matters, the economy, anxiety, distrust of elites, etc.) that cross the political aisle. This was especially evident during the 2016 GOP convention, where in his well-received speech Peter Thiel openly proclaimed being gay… Continue reading ‘Culture Wars’ give way to ‘Shared Narratives’

Intellectualism Signaling

In earlier posts here and here I discuss signaling, but I want expound on this further, specifically ‘intellectualism signaling’. Signaling is actions and mannerisms that are intended to boost one’s social status among like-minded peers. Such mannerisms can include actions (writing, activism, etc.) and aesthetics (physical appearance, materialism, etc.). I define two types of signaling:… Continue reading Intellectualism Signaling