I had an uncle who believed the moon landing was ‘Hollywood hoax’.
Uncle Mike also buried his cash (didn’t trust banks) in a tobacco can in his garden. I used to think he was crazy. Now, I see him more as eccentric skeptic.
Today, with more information and better information than ever we trust strangers, internet and hypes in many forms which make Trump’s ‘fake news’ protestations seem meager.
Can we trust our own ability to discern, sift-through information, and draw valid conclusions – or are we just kidding ourselves?
Frauds haven’t gone away, nor charlatans. Seems biggest loudest garish voices or caricatures gets attention, and belief to the point a National Inquirer headline seems tamely irrelevant. Examples: FIFA, Volkswagen, Lance Armstrong – high profile, trusted/revered … and later proven to be sham riddled phonies. We understand getting on bandwagons (group-think) or following teachings of parents and educators (ethics, religion, faith, dogma …).
If we can’ trust the ‘big brands’, the famous and noble, mom/dad, church/state, who/what can we trust?
What should we completely toss aside and realize is false?
We should driller deeper, don’t you think?
When we are convinced we’ve made right-headed decisions because of what we’ve always believed, what we’ve always done – then getting disastrous (perhaps predictable) results, something else is going on in how our mind processes data to reach judgements.
Or is it our rational mind at all?
Is our gut-reaction (i.e., as Malcolm Gladwell’s BLINK discusses) or simply failed logic?
How do you pick a tomato, a melon, a friend, a lover, a boss, an employee?
True things appearing false – or false things appearing to be true; this interests me – not because some are ‘urban myths in need of debunking’ but because it seems stupid to be walking around alive with distortions in my thinking (or yours) when better information would be helpful.
For example, dieting works. Or exercise works. Everybody peddling some product, service or book in those fields, in those industries – argues/boasts they work.
Do a column on loneliness. My sister and I talked about this yesterday. Successful, well off people who have left or lost a partner are lonely. People who have lost their jobs are lonely. Retired individuals who have lost a reason to get up in the morning are lonely. Even worse can be people in challenging relationships who feel alone and lonely. When you think about our city, the number of people who are quite simply just "lonely" is staggering. Easy to become lonely, not easy to get out of it. Just some thoughts. My guess is that our little city has more "Lonely" people than anyone realizes. Glorious day, get out and enjoy it, anonymous, Calgary, AB