Jacob J. Walker's Blog

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Quote of the Day: “A man who has never gone to school may steal from a freight car; but if he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad.”

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A man who has never gone to school may steal from a freight car; but if he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad.

An interesting quote attributed to Theodore Roosevelt, from my series of 10 quotes….  It does raise a very important point: while optimistic economists think that the more educated we become, the more likely we will solve problems (This is the primary thesis of Steven E. Landsburg), this is not necessarily the case.  Without wisdom in how to use knowledge (see yesterday’s quote, which I apologize for posting late…  and the Dalai Lama quote), we have equal chance of having sociopaths using knowledge to do amazing harm to society.

This goes back to the idea that Einstein had (which is misquoted, but still his basic idea), that we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them (He actually said “A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move toward higher levels.”, but that is for a different quote of the day).  But while Spiral Dynamics suggests that our consciousness is evolving, it also shows that there are still those in more destructive methods of thought, and the second law of thermodynamics is more than just about heat, it also suggests that chaos is far more probable than order.

This does not mean I am a pessimist, as pessimists have already lost; but as a realist, I know that we must think about the probability of our own self-destruction if we want the possibility of continual human survival.

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Written by Jacob Walker

November 19th, 2013 at 11:59 am

Posted in Quotes from Others

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