Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Last and First Men

There used to be a saying “In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” But as the world became networked first through newspapers, then radio, television, and then the Internet mass neurosis spread more and more rapidly until a generation into the internet the average neurosis level of young adults was the same as mental patients had been in their grandparents time. 

The popular consensus was that knowledge was available for all, but the trade-off had become that intellectual rigour was lost and all knowledge regardless of veracity become regarded as the same worth. What was more, in the West a concept came about that knowledge should be free. This rapidly eliminated the resources which would have allow talented individuals to generate intellectual property rather than be wage slaves. The anti-intellectual trend which stemmed from the origins of universal free education expanded and insulting terms were applied to intellectuals confabulating intelligence and knowledge with poor social skills and inadequate emotional development. 

While this was attractive to the masses who felt that everyone had a right to equal intelligence and that any tests purporting to show differences were by definition false this offset any benefits that broader access to knowledge might have brought deterring many of the more able from high levels of attainment in a purely intellectual sphere. Combined with a belief that internalization of knowledge was no longer necessary – that it was all there on the Internet reduced the possible impact substantially as ideas on an external network could never cross pollinate and form a network of concepts in the minds of those whose primary skill was to search rather than to link concepts already internalized.

No comments:

Post a Comment