Saturday, November 21, 2020

Ben Franklin Opined on Harvard in 1722

By Chuck Marshall

Some Things Never Change

Dear Wise Readers- 

These days I'm reading a biography of Ben Franklin- actually listening to- and came across his opinion of Harvard when he was a teenager and still living in Boston. He was considering to enter a trade rather than attend Harvard as some of his peers were planning. It was written, as Franklin often did, under a pen name- in this case a middle aged woman named "Silence Dogood". If you have the time it's quite a read, hard to believe he was around 16 when he wrote it ! (Mind you, this would have been written in the early 1720's) He's basically calling Harvard students spoiled, simple minded brats who learn nothing but how to think more of themselves.

"I fancy'd I was travelling back thither, I reflected in my Mind on the extream Folly of those Parents, who, blind to their Childrens Dulness, and insensible of the Solidity of their Skulls, because they think their Purses can afford it, will needs send them to the Temple of Learning, where, for want of a suitable Genius, they learn little more than how to carry themselves handsomely, and enter a Room genteely, (which might as well be acquir'd at a Dancing-School,) and from whence they return, after Abundance of Trouble and Charge, as great Blockheads as ever, only more proud and self-conceited."

All I can say is, some things never change.

Friday, November 13, 2020

Conspiracy Theories from the Middle

 By Chuck Marshall 

I'm politically moderate, but I tend to lean to the right - at least this year. I CANNOT stand what I see as unfairness, no matter who the victim is. I have a few questions that the corporate media doesn't ask or answer-- maybe some of you can ?

1) Why were the opinion polls so far off ? From a 14 point deficit the week before to dead even results in Wisconsin alone. I won't waste your time but it's a long list of "wrong" opinion polls.
2) The election was clearly breaking in the direction of Trump the evening of the elections until several states had to "stop counting". Why was it ok to take a year of our time over the Democrat's Russia-gate theory of "collusion" but any question from the Republicans this year- after a few hours - is the stuff of "conspiracy theories" ?
3) Why is Russia so much more worrisome than China ? One is a neutered old world power that can barely influence their neighbor Ukraine. The the other manufactures everything we own and has enormous influence and power world wide.

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Polls Got it Wrong-- Again

 By Chuck Marshall 

Dear Wise Readers---

Hello fellow Americans-- a few thoughts on opinion polls.
1) Why are they so wrong AGAIN ? They had Biden up by 14% last month, and up by 8% over this past weekend. Statistics is a science, so is the science now wrong ?
2) Why is there no "undecided" category anymore in most polls ? We should believe everyone has made up their mind when called by pollsters?
3) Much like a court argument, survey questions can be very easily manipulated. That's why "leading the witness" is grounds for an argument to be overturned by a judge. If I'm to believe polls I'd like to hear exactly what questions are asked., not "the President's approval rating is down" with no explanation as to how the question was worded.
4) Who are they asking ? Some of these polls seem to have been asked at a the Democratic national convention. We hear "1500 likely voters across the US", but what's the mix ? How many R's, D's and I's ?
5) Most likely, surveys are being manipulated. Remember this isn't your local newspaper bloviating, these are massive, international conglomerates that want things to go a certain way. The truth is a quaint concept that they care about only as long as it's good for their profits and power. Scrutinize, scrutinize, scrutinize and don't be gullible to their narrative.
6) What can you do about it ? Ignore the opinion polls. They are a steaming pile of bullshit. Picture Mr. Burns from the Simpsons when you hear the talking heads blabbing on about what "the American people are thinking". Blah, blah, blah.

In my humble opinion.....