A couple of professors at the University of Washington are offering the class “Calling Bullshit in the Age of Big Data“. It starts soon but you can do the readings now if you want to. I loved reading the essay on this topic by Harry Frankfurt. The biggest takeaway from that article for me was his distinction between the liar and the bullshitter, namely, that the liar is concerned about the truth. The liar specifically wants you to believe the opposite of the truth, so he must know the truth and engage with it. The bullshitter, on the other hand, takes no interest in the truth at all. He just wants to distract you. He might even tell you the truth, or some truth, if it advances his agenda. He just won’t tell you the whole truth in context. It’s sort of like if everyone wants to talk about some kind of Russian scandal and you instead go on a tirade about fake news. Anyway, kudos to UDub. I think every university should teach some version of this class and make it mandatory. If you can graduate from college without being able to tell shit from Shinola, what’s the point?
It turns out that Mexico really is sending us their worst people. Or, at least, they’re sending us back our worst people. Maybe they shouldn’t be so worked up about that wall after all.
And, the world has just lost the only tolerable liberal. I fear the debate may have just ended.