Most people think here are a lot of bad people running around in the world . . .
Sam has got it half-right . . .
Most people think here are a lot of bad people running around in the world. There aren’t a lot of bad people, there are a lot of bad ideas, and bad ideas are worse than bad people because bad ideas are contagious–bad ideas get good people to do horrible things.
Sam has got it half-right. Actually, I suspect he knows the other half but does not emphasize it. Bad ideas are bad BECAUSE they inflame us emotionally and justify acting out destructively and anti-socially, and with these, bad, inflammatory ideas, we not only inflame ourselves, but inflame others as well, hence the “contagious” part. I would go further than Sam has, however. It is not that bad ideas are worse than bad people. rather there are no such things as “bad people,” only bad-inflammatory ideas.
“Free Will” : I love Sam, and this is an important book, but, personally, I have some serious issues with his thesis, or if not his thesis, with the “semantic environment” in which he frames his argument. Still, I wish everyone would read and discuss and learn from it.
© 2017, Rex Alexander. All rights reserved.
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