Check your privilege

One thing that worries me about our attachment to knowing is that our knowing is outpaced by its impacts.

The systemic complexity of our world seems to be slipping beyond the wit of Homo sapiens to manage. This was evident in the financial crash of 2007, when it was revealed that those in charge of the banks had no understanding of the complex derivatives for which they were responsible. Google and Facebook have no real means to manage the uses of their networks by bad actors. In fact, their incentive to keep enabling malevolent uses of their networks pushes Google and Facebook themselves into the category of bad actors. And in Brexit, the UK Government is managing a process the consequences of which it seems unable to understand, still less contain. We shall see.

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First post

I’m fed up with knowing. There’s too much certainty in our world. I’m not thinking here of the knowing of experts. I respect expertise. I’m thinking of the knowing that solidifies too readily into identity. The knowing on which polarisation feeds.

I’m susceptible to it myself. Over the past years, as the Government pursued an extreme version of Brexit with no effort to secure losers’ consent, I turned from grudgingly accepting Brexit to opposing it. And the more the left proved incapable of addressing its antisemitism, the more I detached from my lifelong affiliation with Labour.

But, broadly speaking, I prefer to wear my certainties lightly.

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