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Showing posts from November, 2015

“Be Yourself”? Part II

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Much as I have enjoyed badmouthing postmodernism in revenge for the years of tedium it inflicted upon me, I have to admit, as I mentioned at the end of Postmodern Shibboleths, I have found discussions of “the subject” to be useful, relevant and meaningful.   Postmodernists will tend to identify challenges to the unity and stability of the ego with Lacan, and the ephemeral nature of the individual self with Derrida’s claim that “the subject is never equivalent to itself”--which is sort of an update of Heraclitus' observation that "you can't step into the same river twice."
It seems pretty obvious that the self, the individual, the person you think of as you is constantly changing.  Every time a new thought enters your head, every time you think a thought about yourself, or you have a new experience, in fact, with every breath you take you are not quite the same person you were an instant ago.  
From a purely physical (and physics) point of view every single molecule of …

“Objects in Mirror Are Closer than They Appear!” Really?

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It's a mirror!? “Objects in mirror are closer than they appear.”  Just to be absolutely clear for the Alice-in-Wonderlanders, there are no objects in your mirror. Duhh, it’s a mirror!
Gamers know Video-gamers familiar with the expression “All your base are belong to us” will immediately recognize “Objects in mirror . . .” as a Japanese translation into English.  This particular example should alert us to the easy, random and illogical fashion in which the English language gets transformed.  

Correct syntax I can’t perceive any advantage in the erroneous “objects in mirror” claim over the correct if telegraphic English of “Objects are closer than they appear in mirror.”  Yet, we would have to assume that any youngster riding shotgun and looking at an automobile’s side mirror will grow up thinking “objects in mirror” is correct English and, in contrast, the appropriate syntax sounds a little strange.
Cut your teacher some slack! This is a plea to all students to cut your English tea…