Saturday, March 8, 2008

Synthesized Happiness, Intellectualism, and the Elite

Watch it.

It'll be interesting to see how many people don't buy it. I do. 100%

In fact, I really love the TED conference. There's so much great stuff going on there, and they really do bring together the foremost minds of our time (as well as some of the most optimistic and proactive). In addition to synthesized happiness, you can see talks on Cheetahs vs Hippos, Spaghetti, sliced bread, and the history of violence. These are just some of those that I have watched and enjoyed, but there are many videos available, and I advise that you browse through them.

The ranty side of this post is brought on by the idea of a gathering of the elite. You may have noticed, as of late, that "elite" has become something of an epithet - particularly in the realm of politics, but in general as well. Somehow, believing that your years of training, thought, and research somehow give you a greater understanding of the intricacies of an issue is not OK. Your opinion couldn't be any more valid than mine, because we're all equal. Well, if you buy the Lockian philosophy that the US of A is founded on, all men were created equal (notice the lack of women...). What those men (or people, as I prefer) do with themselves after that is a matter of circumstance and their own volition - and that's if you accept the premise, which I'm not certain I do.

In other words, when I am getting surgery, I would prefer the surgeon who has been through med school and has years of experience - that is, the elite surgeon. The same thing goes for any other area of human interaction. That surgeon is not an elite mechanic, which is who I would prefer to work on my car. When we get together a lot of elites in fields relating to thought and ideas, I would expect some pretty good ideas to surface, and that is exactly what we see at TED.

No comments: