The Crime of Reason

And the Closing of the Scientific Mind
Author: Robert B. Laughlin
Publisher: ReadHowYouWant.com
ISBN: 145960816X
Category:
Page: 192
View: 1800
We all agree that the free flow of ideas is essential to creativity. And we like to believe that in our modern, technological world, information is more freely available and flows faster than ever before. But according to Nobel Laureate Robert Laughlin, acquiring information is becoming a danger or even a crime. Increasingly, the really valuable information is private property or a state secret, with the result that it is now easy for a flash of insight, entirely innocently, to infringe a patent or threaten national security. The public pays little attention because this vital information is ''technical'' - but, Laughlin argues, information is often labeled technical so it can be sequestered, not sequestered because it's technical. The increasing restrictions on information in such fields as cryptography, biotechnology, and computer software design are creating a new Dark Age; a time characterized not by light and truth but by disinformation and ignorance. Thus we find ourselves dealing more and more with the Crime of Reason, the antisocial and sometimes outright illegal nature of certain intellectual activities. The Crime of Reason is a reader-friendly jeremiad, On Bullshit for the Slashdot and Creative Commons crowd; a short, fiercely argued essay on a problem of increasing concern to people at the frontiers of new ideas.

    • Science

Powering the Future

How We Will (Eventually) Solve the Energy Crisis and Fuel the Civilization of Tomorrow
Author: Robert B. Laughlin
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 0465027946
Category: Science
Page: 240
View: 3954
In Powering the Future, Nobel laureate Robert B. Laughlin transports us two centuries into the future, when we’ve ceased to use carbon from the ground—either because humans have banned carbon burning or because fuel has simply run out. Boldly, Laughlin predicts no earth-shattering transformations will have taken place. Six generations from now, there will still be soccer moms, shopping malls, and business trips. Firesides will still be snug and warm. How will we do it? Not by discovering a magic bullet to slay our energy problems, but through a slew of fascinating technologies, drawing on wind, water, and fire. Powering the Future is an objective yet optimistic tour through alternative fuel sources, set in a world where we’ve burned every last drop of petroleum and every last shovelful of coal. The Predictable: Fossil fuels will run out. The present flow of crude oil out of the ground equals in one day the average flow of the Mississippi River past New Orleans in thirteen minutes. If you add the energy equivalents of gas and coal, it’s thirty-six minutes. At the present rate of consumption, we’ll be out of fossil fuels in two centuries’ time. We always choose the cheapest gas. From the nineteenth-century consolidation of the oil business to the California energy crisis of 2000-2001, the energy business has shown, time and again, how low prices dominate market share. Market forces—not green technology—will be the driver of energy innovation in the next 200 years. The laws of physics remain fixed. Energy will still be conserved, degrade entropically with use, and have to be disposed of as waste heat into outer space. How much energy a fuel can pack away in a given space is fixed by quantum mechanics—and if we want to keep flying jet planes, we will need carbon-based fuels. The Potential: Animal waste.If dried and burned, the world’s agricultural manure would supply about one-third as much energy as all the coal we presently consume. Trash. The United States disposes of 88 million tons of carbon in its trash per year. While the incineration of waste trash is not enough to contribute meaningfully to the global demand for energy, it will constrain fuel prices by providing a cheap supply of carbon. Solar energy.The power used to light all the cities around the world is only one-millionth of the total power of sunlight pouring down on earth’s daytime side. And the amount of hydropump storage required to store the world’s daily electrical surge is equal to only eight times the volume of Lake Mead. PRAISE FOR ROBERT B. LAUGHLIN “Perhaps the most brilliant theoretical physicist since Richard Feynman”—George Chapline, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory “Powerful but controversial.”— Financial Times “[Laughlin’s] company … is inspirational.” —New Scientist

    • Social Science

Closing of the American Mind


Author: Allan Bloom
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781439126264
Category: Social Science
Page: 400
View: 8679
The Closing of the American Mind, a publishing phenomenon in hardcover, is now a paperback literary event. In this acclaimed number one national best-seller, one of our country's most distinguished political philosophers argues that the social/political crisis of 20th-century America is really an intellectual crisis. Allan Bloom's sweeping analysis is essential to understanding America today. It has fired the imagination of a public ripe for change.

    • Biography & Autobiography

The Closing of the Muslim Mind

How Intellectual Suicide Created the Modern Islamist Crisis
Author: Robert R. Reilly
Publisher: Open Road Media
ISBN: 1497620732
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 288
View: 3160
The book you must read to understand the Islamist crisis—and the threat to us all Robert R. Reilly’s eye-opening book masterfully explains the frightening behavior coming out of the Islamic world. Terrorism, he shows, is only one manifestation of the spiritual pathology of Islamism. Reilly uncovers the root of our contemporary crisis: a pivotal struggle waged within the Muslim world nearly a millennium ago. In a heated battle over the role of reason, the side of irrationality won. The deformed theology that resulted, Reilly reveals, produced the spiritual pathology of Islamism, and a deeply dysfunctional culture. The Closing of the Muslim Mind solves such puzzles as: · Why the Arab world stands near the bottom of every measure of human development · Why scientific inquiry is nearly dead in the Islamic world · Why Spain translates more books in a single year than the entire Arab world has in the past thousand years · Why some people in Saudi Arabia still refuse to believe man has been to the moon

    • Philosophy

Reason in the Balance

The Case Against Naturalism in Science, Law & Education
Author: Phillip E. Johnson
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 9780830819294
Category: Philosophy
Page: 245
View: 4456
A critique of the all-pervasive naturalistic assumptions and presuppositions in American academia, government, and the judiciary, and their effect on education, public policy, and law.

    • Social Science

The Myth of Moral Panics

Sex, Snuff, and Satan
Author: Bill Thompson,Andy Williams
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135083592
Category: Social Science
Page: 340
View: 1008
This study provides a comprehensive critique - forensic, historical, and theoretical - of the moral panic paradigm, using empirically grounded ethnographic research to argue that the panic paradigm suffers from fundamental flaws that make it a myth rather than a viable academic perspective.

    • Psychology

Enlightenment Now

The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0525427570
Category: Psychology
Page: 556
View: 5381
An assessment of the human condition in the twenty-first century presents data demonstrating that life quality, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise throughout the world because of the Enlightenment ideal of using reason and science.

    • Biography & Autobiography

Triumph of Justice

Closing the Book on the O.J. Simpson Saga
Author: Daniel Petrocelli,Peter Knobler
Publisher: Graymalkin Media
ISBN: 1631680773
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 620
View: 1672
After the white Bronco, after the bloody glove, after the media frenzy and the verdict that set O.J. Simpson free, Daniel Petrocelli came to pick up the pieces. Outraged by the disastrous miscarriage of justice, the family of murder victim Ronald Goldman sought justice in civil court—their last chance to go after Simpson. To represent them, they hired Petrocelli, a respected attorney who had never before tried a criminal case. In order to win the case, Petrocelli would have to prove that O.J. Simpson was a killer. The physical evidence connecting Simpson to the murders was rock solid, but in the criminal trial, evidence was not enough. To bring the families justice, Petrocelli would have to do something that the District Attorney had not been able to do: confront O.J. Simpson face-to-face. Called “the best book on the subject” by the San Francisco Chronicle, Triumph of Justice is the definitive account of the Simpson murders and their aftermath. In the long, twisted history of the trial of the century, Daniel Petrocelli has the final word.

    • Education

The Color of Mind

Why the Origins of the Achievement Gap Matter for Justice
Author: Derrick Darby,John L. Rury
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022652549X
Category: Education
Page: 224
View: 675
American students vary in educational achievement, but white students in general typically have better test scores and grades than black students. Why is this the case, and what can school leaders do about it? In The Color of Mind, Derrick Darby and John L. Rury answer these pressing questions and show that we cannot make further progress in closing the achievement gap until we understand its racist origins. Telling the story of what they call the Color of Mind—the idea that there are racial differences in intelligence, character, and behavior—they show how philosophers, such as David Hume and Immanuel Kant, and American statesman Thomas Jefferson, contributed to the construction of this pernicious idea, how it influenced the nature of schooling and student achievement, and how voices of dissent such as Frederick Douglass, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, and W. E. B. Du Bois debunked the Color of Mind and worked to undo its adverse impacts. Rejecting the view that racial differences in educational achievement are a product of innate or cultural differences, Darby and Rury uncover the historical interplay between ideas about race and American schooling, to show clearly that the racial achievement gap has been socially and institutionally constructed. School leaders striving to bring justice and dignity to American schools today must work to root out the systemic manifestations of these ideas within schools, while still doing what they can to mitigate the negative effects of poverty, segregation, inequality, and other external factors that adversely affect student achievement. While we cannot expect schools alone to solve these vexing social problems, we must demand that they address the dignitary injustices associated with how we track, discipline, and deal with special education that reinforce long-standing racist ideas. That is the only way to expel the Color of Mind from schools, close the racial achievement gap, and afford all children the dignity they deserve.

    • Computers

Information Age Tales

From Adam’s Apple to the Apple II and Beyond
Author: Brad Bradford
Publisher: iUniverse
ISBN: 1462030483
Category: Computers
Page: 200
View: 5451
Early in recorded human history, the literacy rate was as low as one percent, and reading materials were available to only the elite. How times have changed! In Information Age Tales, author Brad Bradford chronicles these changes, documenting how technology growth continues to change the world, upsetting the balance of power on almost every continent. Information Age Tales recaps the history of speech, languages, writing, and memory and describes how these revolutions paved the way for today’s age of cyberspace. He shows how history may be repeating itself as knowledge-sharing information technology such as Facebook and Twitter have a global effect. Bradford presents an information technology trail that includes concepts such as the following: • Water monkeys may have been our ancestors. • Fearsome Mongol warriors played a positive role in the rise of Western Civilization. • Hindus in India and the Arabs unveiled long-hidden numerical tools needed for modern science to emerge in the West. • Interchangeable parts appear more than four centuries before Eli Whitney won his historic patent to manufacture muskets with them. Information Age Tales imparts stories revolving around the wonders of the written word and shows the role technology has played in the rise of past civilizations.

    • Philosophy

Reason, Religion, and Democracy


Author: Dennis C. Mueller
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521115019
Category: Philosophy
Page: 450
View: 7057
The rise of religious fundamentalism in different parts of the world in recent years and its association with terrorism has led to renewed interest in the nature of religion and its compatibility with Western institutions. Much of the focus of this new interest has contrasted religion and science as systems of knowledge. This book also emphasizes the difference between religion and science as means for understanding causal relationships, but it focuses much more heavily on the challenge religious extremism poses for liberal democratic institutions. The treatment contains a discussion of human psychology, describes the salient characteristics of all religions, and contrasts religion and science as systems of thought. Historical sketches are used to establish a link between modernity and the use of the human capacity for reasoning to advance human welfare. The book describes the conditions under which democratic institutions can advance human welfare, and the nature of constitutional rights as protectors of individual freedoms. Extremist religions are shown to pose a threat to liberal democracy, a threat that has implications for immigration and education policies and the definition of citizenship.

    • Religion

A Taste of the Classics

Crime & Punishment, PensÇes, The Great Divorce & Christian Perfection
Author: N.A
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 0830859551
Category: Religion
Page: 143
View: 306
In A Taste of the Classics Series, Kenneth Boa encapsulates and discusses the classic works that helped shape Western civilization: books like The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis, The Knowledge of the Holy by A.W. Tozer and The Love of God by Bernard of Clairvaux, giving you a synthesis of the key things you will want to know: The life and times of the author The timeless contribution of the book Key quotations from the book that reveal the power of the book and illustrate its underlying worldview Brief insights after each of the key quotations Compelling applications for our lives

    • Law

The Brain Defense

Murder in Manhattan and the Dawn of Neuroscience in America's Courtrooms
Author: Kevin Davis
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0698183355
Category: Law
Page: 336
View: 5302
Called “the best kind of nonfiction” by Michael Connelly, this riveting new book combines true crime, brain science, and courtroom drama. In 1991, the police were called to East 72nd St. in Manhattan, where a woman's body had fallen from a twelfth-story window. The woman’s husband, Herbert Weinstein, soon confessed to having hit and strangled his wife after an argument, then dropping her body out of their apartment window to make it look like a suicide. The 65-year-old Weinstein, a quiet, unassuming retired advertising executive, had no criminal record, no history of violent behavior—not even a short temper. How, then, to explain this horrific act? Journalist Kevin Davis uses the perplexing story of the Weinstein murder to present a riveting, deeply researched exploration of the intersection of neuroscience and criminal justice. Shortly after Weinstein was arrested, an MRI revealed a cyst the size of an orange on his brain’s frontal lobe, the part of the brain that governs judgment and impulse control. Weinstein’s lawyer seized on that discovery, arguing that the cyst had impaired Weinstein’s judgment and that he should not be held criminally responsible for the murder. It was the first case in the United States in which a judge allowed a scan showing a defendant’s brain activity to be admitted as evidence to support a claim of innocence. The Weinstein case marked the dawn of a new era in America's courtrooms, raising complex and often troubling questions about how we define responsibility and free will, how we view the purpose of punishment, and how strongly we are willing to bring scientific evidence to bear on moral questions. Davis brings to light not only the intricacies of the Weinstein case but also the broader history linking brain injuries and aberrant behavior, from the bizarre stories of Phineas Gage and Charles Whitman, perpetrator of the 1966 Texas Tower massacre, to the role that brain damage may play in violence carried out by football players and troubled veterans of America’s twenty-first century wars. The Weinstein case opened the door for a novel defense that continues to transform the legal system: Criminal lawyers are increasingly turning to neuroscience and introducing the effects of brain injuries—whether caused by trauma or by tumors, cancer, or drug or alcohol abuse—and arguing that such damage should be considered in determining guilt or innocence, the death penalty or years behind bars. As he takes stock of the past, present and future of neuroscience in the courts, Davis offers a powerful account of its potential and its hazards. Thought-provoking and brilliantly crafted, The Brain Defense marries a murder mystery complete with colorful characters and courtroom drama with a sophisticated discussion of how our legal system has changed—and must continue to change—as we broaden our understanding of the human mind.

    • Education

The Opening of the American Mind

Canons, Culture, and History
Author: Lawrence W. Levine
Publisher: Beacon Press
ISBN: 9780807031193
Category: Education
Page: 212
View: 2583
In response to recent books attacking the contemporary university and blaming educators for a decline in American culture, the author argues that the "opening up" of American education and of a changing society are inextricably linked

    • Philosophy

The Defeat of the Mind


Author: Alain Finkielkraut
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231080239
Category: Philosophy
Page: 165
View: 1743
The Defeat of the Mind examines the opposition to Enlightenment thought from the eighteenth century to the present. Finkielkraut asserts that the ostensibly progressive cast of third world anticolonial and anti-Western sentiment, paradoxically, has its antecedent in Eurocentric sources - chiefly the German romantic concept of the Volksgeist, or spirit of the people. Straightforward and succinct, Finkielkraut draws a line between the idea of culture as an expression of the life of the mind and culture as an expression of national spirit. He deplores the appropriation of the concept of the Volksgeist by ethnic nationalists, who employ the notion in justification of such horrors as the Final Solution in Nazi Germany and the current waves of "ethnic cleansing." Equally worrying, he claims, are the seemingly harmless infusions of the Volksgeist into campaigns for ethnic diversity espoused by some social scientists and third world intellectuals. The Defeat of the Mind questions notions of cultural relativism espoused by such intellectual and political leaders as Claude Levi-Strauss and Frantz Fanon. Finkielkraut points to the United Nations and UNESCO - founded to propagate the universalist ideals of Enlightenment Europe, these organizations have co-opted the notion of cultural relativism to a fault, now speaking on behalf of every ethnic prejudice. "The objective remained the same," Finkielkraut maintains of this shift in ideology, "but to achieve its goal, it was no longer a matter of opening others to reason, but of opening ourselves to the reason of others." Defending values that seem absent from many contemporary frames of reference, the book concludes with a chapter challenging post-modernist thought, for Finkielkraut claims that it equates the value of novels by Flaubert with television movies and lacks concern for the survival of culture and reason.

    • Philosophy

The Righteous Mind

Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion
Author: Jonathan Haidt
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307455777
Category: Philosophy
Page: 500
View: 2522
Presents a groundbreaking investigation into the origins of morality at the core of religion and politics, offering scholarly insight into the motivations behind cultural clashes that are polarizing America.

    • Social Science

The Coddling of the American Mind

How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas Are Setting Up a Generation for Failure
Author: Greg Lukianoff,Jonathan Haidt
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0735224900
Category: Social Science
Page: 352
View: 7621
Something is going wrong on many college campuses in the last few years. Rates of anxiety, depression, and suicide are rising. Speakers are shouted down. Students and professors say they are walking on eggshells and afraid to speak honestly. How did this happen? First Amendment expert Greg Lukianoff and social psychologist Jonathan Haidt show how the new problems on campus have their origins in three terrible ideas that have become increasingly woven into American childhood and education: what doesn’t kill you makes you weaker; always trust your feelings; and life is a battle between good people and evil people. These three Great Untruths are incompatible with basic psychological principles, as well as ancient wisdom from many cultures. They interfere with healthy development. Anyone who embraces these untruths—and the resulting culture of safetyism—is less likely to become an autonomous adult able to navigate the bumpy road of life. Lukianoff and Haidt investigate the many social trends that have intersected to produce these untruths. They situate the conflicts on campus in the context of America’s rapidly rising political polarization, including a rise in hate crimes and off-campus provocation. They explore changes in childhood including the rise of fearful parenting, the decline of unsupervised play, and the new world of social media that has engulfed teenagers in the last decade. This is a book for anyone who is confused by what is happening on college campuses today, or has children, or is concerned about the growing inability of Americans to live, work, and cooperate across party lines.

The Literary World


Author: N.A
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: N.A
Category:
Page: N.A
View: 797

    • Fiction

Rapture in Death


Author: J. D. Robb,Nora Roberts
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9780425155189
Category: Fiction
Page: 310
View: 6593
Each murder victim died with a smile on their face. The only one who isn't grinning is Police Lieutenant Eve Dallas-because she's got to find out why.

    • Commercial law

The American Lawyer

A Monthly Journal Serving the Business and Professional Interests of the American Bar
Author: N.A
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: N.A
Category: Commercial law
Page: N.A
View: 6248