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Showing posts from August, 2017

The story and the teller

Anders Ericsson gave the world "deliberate practice". Malcolm Gladwell took the idea and ran with it, developing it into a full-fledged guidebook on achieving excellence.

An entire nation starved, and the uber-rich and famous Voltaire was moved to tears at their plight. Candide moved the populace to revolution.

The industrial revolution came and brought untold misery to many, many societies. Karl Marx liberated several from the clutches of capitalism.

Why is it that society needed these individuals for these specific tasks? None of the ideas each of the above people brought out was anything outstandingly clever. If anything, they merely solidified common knowledge: viz. "practice makes perfect", "this is not the best of all possible worlds, or even the seventeenth" and "when the oppressors and the oppressed clash, something needs to give". So, why were these not gradual things, built up over time and over several martyrs' graves? Why did th…