I’ve been working on the same theme for months now and your article kicked me in the butt — I’ve just published, even though it feels like WIP still. It’s the cultural problem of our time, this “post truth” concept: it makes a mockery of all the better bits of the Enlightenment.

When I was young I saw a poster that read: Those Who Do Not Read Have No Advantage Over Those Who Cannot Read. I think we can now say with some certainty that those who do not value facts have no advantage over those who are deprived of facts. If we lose our appetite for evidence, fact, and proof, then we are no better off than people who had almost no evidence or facts to draw upon. The most ignorant isolated illiterate peasant in the farthest valley of mediaeval Europe was not more clueless or superstitious than the modern person with an entire Internet of research at their fingertips, who gives credence to none of it (or selective credence to what strokes his/her prejudices).

Dogged, plodding empiricism is not a colourful or stylish banner to wave, but it’s the only one I’ve got in the face of this onslaught on our collective intelligence.

Retired; ex-software engineer. Paleo-feminist. Sailor. Arduino tinkerer. Enviro. Libertarian Socialist (Anarcho-Syndicalist, kinda). Writer. Altermondialiste.

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