Since I’ve been pondering Rene Descartes lately, and before reassigning him to the dusty storage bins of my mind, I would like to poke at his famous quote, “I think therefore I am”. Easily one of my favorites.
Descartes began his philosophy by doubting everything in order to figure out what he could know with absolute certainty.
Although he could be wrong about what he was thinking, it was undeniable that he was thinking.
Upon the recognition that “I Think”, Descartes concluded that “I Am”.
On the heels of believing in himself, Descartes asked, “What am I?” His answer: A thinking thing (res cogitans) as opposed to a physical thing extended in three-dimensional space (res extensa).
So, based on this line of reasoning, Descartes knew that he existed, though he wasn’t sure if he had a body.
It’s a philosophical cliff-hanger; You’ll have to read his ‘Meditations’ to see how it ends.
They say Waking up early never killed anyone, but that may not be true.
Rene Descartes never really had an actual job.
After college he traveled Europe, spending much of the time as a gentleman volunteer in the army, a rather cushy gig that required no actual combat.
He retired to the Netherlands in his thirties, but not for the pot and hookers as much as for peace and toleration.
He spent mornings in his bed, philosophizing a little and sleeping a lot.
Descartes enjoyed some successes as a philosopher, scientist, and mathematician. In fact, his works drew the attention of the powerful and the intelligent of his day.
One of these powerful admirers was Queen Christina of Sweden, who often invited him to join her court and instruct her in philosophy, and offer that he repeatedly declined calling Sweden “the land of ice and bears”.
In 1649 however, finding himself flat broke, he grudgingly accepted the queen’s offer.
Upon arriving, Descartes discovered that Queen Christina (who could stand barefoot in the snow) insisted on having her lessons at 5 AM.
Rising at this ungodly hour and trudging through the elements soon killed Descartes.
The formal cause of death was pneumonia, but we all know it was that early wakeup that did him in.
Just tossing out this tester, if you will, to get a feel for any interest in this subject.
Many of you are unaware of the fact that in a past life, I was qualified as a homeschooling teacher by the Baltimore BOE.
This qualification included booster-courses in English, Math, Science, and History.
This is not a big deal, and many parents have undergone such training and testing…but the reason that I mention it is because in the process of these crash-courses in high school-level teacher training, I found a subject that continued to fascinate me for many years: The true history of this United States. The one we were never told about in public school.
The history of ourselves that, for various reasons, was kept a secret because we simply couldn’t handle the truth.
I’m recently feeling the desire to start posting some of this info, in bite-sized pieces of course, for your casual consumption. Mainly, I think I just need to get some of it down in print before Alzheimers begins taking it back.
Naturally, if it turns out that I’m the only “truth geek” around these parts, then the whole idea is naught.
If you would be so kind, please leave a brief comment to indicate any interest on your part in the above subject matter…and at the end of 30 days or 30 comments (whichever comes first), I will either begin posting or simply move on to another idea.
Thank you for taking the time to read this small announcement.
Having (formerly) been customers of Bank of America and using, on a daily basis, their online checking service, we were automatically included in the recent Class Action suit that addressed their often-shady overdraft fees.
On first notice, we were elated.
Seriously; We may get some of the thousand-or-so dollars back that they had scammed us out of by juggling deposit dates and Visa charges to put our account in the red all those countless times over the 5 years that we used them for direct deposit?
We had lost track of the number of times that they had held back a deposited check, and allowed a tiny ($20 or less) charge to cost us $70 in fees.
So, today I got our settlement check…drumroll…$14.
Holy toasted turds, we’re rich!
BOA collected Billion$ in illegally-crafted overdraft fees.
One month that sticks in my mind we had paid over $220 in fees for a $40 overdraft.
Our share of the windfall and fair reimbursement? $14.
Score one for the little guys. (that’s sarcasm, BTW)
The system truly Sucks.
Cob County, GA (The Weekly Vice) – Joseph Rucker McFall, a 30-year-old Georgia man, has been indicted after he allegedly beat his 8-week-old child so severely, the child was left blind and brain damaged.
According to police, McFall brutally beat his infant child between August and October of last year. He was taken into custody in October when the child’s injuries came to light.
Prosecutors say the infant suffered multiple broken bones, subdural hemorrhaging and damaged or detached retinas as a result.
McFall was booked into the Cobb County Jail and charged with two counts of aggravated battery and two counts of first-degree child cruelty. He remains held in lieu of $15,000 bond.
via THE WEEKLY VICE: Joseph McFall Beat His Infant Child Blind And Brain Damaged.