Monday, January 28, 2008

Intellectual Morons

Daniel J Flynn's subtitle to the book is "How Ideology Makes Smart People Fall For Stupid Ideas." I'm keeping it more as reference than to read through again. Flynn's premise is that a theory or ideology beclouds thinking, so that no amount of contrary evidence can dent the ideologue.

Most of his targets are on the political left, but he whacks at the Straussians and Ayn Randians as well. Do not expect to get a balanced view of any of these theories or their founders - that's not Flynn's intent here. He highlights the weaknesses and idiocies of each thinker, each notable in the academy or the popular scientific imagination. Thinkers skewered include Paul Erlich, Noam Chomsky, Rigoberto Menchu, Peter Singer - the usual suspects, but collected conveniently in one volume.

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