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“My god! They think and do math!”

A profile of libertarian personalities.

7 Responses to ““My god! They think and do math!””

  1. Ish says:

    Someone with better photoshop skills than me ought to make one of those faux British WWII posters. I think a little brass cannon at the top, then the words “Keep calm and Do the Math” at the bottom.

  2. Archer says:

    This comes in on the day I decide to bring my old Calculus textbook into the office so I can spend otherwise idle breaks re-learning what I’ve forgotten.

    Priceless timing!

    • Arnie says:

      Hey Archer, I did that, too! Actually, I was farming at the time and re-learned calculus during the winter months. Retired now, I still work at it a little bit each day, and tutor my friends and their children who are taking on-line college classes.

      Isn’t it a blast? I just love the honesty, order, and discipline of math. Problems are solved using only the facts, not feelings, and by applying principles (equations, functions), not emotions or conjecture. And the solutions are invariably found. No tolerance for sloppy work or inattention to details (those pesky minus signs).

      Oh, if only government operated in like manner!

      Frankly, we need more “geeks” in office! Let the touchy-feel politicians work for non-profit organizations!

      Glad to know I’m not the only math-enthusiast here, Archer. Thanks for posting!!!!

      [BTW, I am just plowing into new ground: second- and higher-order, linear differential equations. Quite a challenge, but fascinating, and VERY rewarding!]

      Joyfully, Arnie

    • Alpheus says:

      As a mathematician, I wouldn’t consider calculus to be “real” math. To get that, you need axioms, definitions, and proofs. But even so, there’s a certain “engineering” mindset that comes with a good healthy understanding of calculus–in which you learn that Real Life has constraints, and that you had better get your decimals and signs right, or Bad Things can happen.

      And as a mathematician, one can understand the importance of assumptions–things can radically change when you alter them, and if one changes from under your feet, bad things can happen, too. In my Master’s Seminar, one of the students taking the class with me presented on a complex method for understanding when to buy and sell options. It worked fantastically…at least, until the market changed in some subtle way. Then it collapsed, and a lot of people started looking for bailouts.

      Sometimes I wish we could live in a world where we could do whatever we want, with no constraints whatsoever. But Reality is one major constraint, and if we don’t take it into consideration, we are bound to run into a world of hurt!

      And mathematics is a fantastic tool for figuring out what those constraints are, and what we could do within the bounds of those constraints that exist. (Among other things, we can fly to the Moon, or send probes to Mars! ;-)

  3. anon says:

    And horror of horrors: they’re often correct!

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