Context: In his amazing book Zero to One: Notes on Startups, Peter Thiel mentions that he *always* asks this question in job interviews.
I think it’s a great question and am curious to hear anyone and everyone’s answers. : ]
no takers on this so far? okay, well, i’ll start:
many of the most dangerous people are those who try very hard to make the world a better place, without realizing how frequently good intentions backfire. the truth is that improving the world is _really_ hard, and if you think it’s really obvious what we need to do, you’re probably overlooking a lot of complexity. this is why a gradualist, empirical approach to world-improvement—such as that exhibited by the Effective Altruism movement—is so crucial.
You can’t have moral courage if the values you hold are ubiquitous and unquestioningly accepted.
E.g., a Christian in America cannot be considered morally courageous by standing for Christian values, a technologist cannot be considered morally courageous for trying to develop the technology that will shuttle the human race to outer space. Moral courage is exhibited by going against the tide, not by swimming louder faster harder downstream.
Political correctness in all its forms is extremely poinsonous. It’s the worst side of moralism and censorship. Furthermore, it’s not a real belief in a particular set of values. It’s a tribalist fashion statement, and the hardcore followers would be hardcore followers regardless of the beliefs.
When people look at the Soviet union or Nazi Germany and ask “how could people go along with that madness,” they should ask themselves “how can I be going along with this madness here and now.”
The oppressive puritan Christians have been replaced by the very people who fought against their dogma. In the end, they weren’t really against dogma and oppression, they just wanted to implement what they believe to be THEIR dogma and oppression. Now they try to censor people and limit our liberty, and ironically they do it under the guise of liberalism.
I agree that political correctness is extremely dangerous and should be wiped from our society. We can’t revert to tribalism and expect there to be peace and prosperity. The political polarization of the U.S. is a great example of how tribalism can lead to dangerous situations, like cops being shot for being cops, and objective facts being ignored or looked past. The left’s internet mafia runing around silencing anyone with an opinion that might be a little different than their own.
Hey great question, for me it has to be that mathematics is the answer to everything. It’s more a case of people having zero interest in mathematics so they never realize it is the power behind eveything in the universe. Look at fibonacci number and the golden ratio to see a glimse of the ‘hidden’ math running through nature. You have to see that mathematics was not created by humans but discovered by us. The more mathematicians look at our world and reality math is there running in the background like binary code 0’s and 1’s in computer game worlds. Science would be nothing but theory after theory without math. I recently poked my head into the mathematical rabbit hole, (and fell in) where i now see the power and beauty of math far from what i was taught at school. Mathematics is the languge of TRUTH, 1 + 1 = 2, math doesn’t lie, we just need to understand, WE ARE MATHEMATICS.
I have recently blogged about this if anyone would like to check it out and leave some comments i’d love to hear what you think on mathematics and reality.
There is a “right” answer to everything. Every situation, every question, every encounter, there is 1 response that you can do that is 100% perfect.
Sadly, we can never know if what we do is the right thing, the only thing we can do is always strive to be better.