"The Fourth Turning" - A Must Read

Robin Hanson (hanson@hss.caltech.edu)
Thu, 6 Mar 1997 09:45:50 -0800 (PST)

Reilly Jones writes:
>The fallacy of analysis like this, is that you can start arbitrarily
>anywhere in history, in any given year, and make historical facts fit
>whatever cycle you choose, whether generational, sunspots, comet
>appearances, meteor showers, radioactive decay, climatological, you name

O.K., I name this: start in 1900, and make historical facts fit a 3.4
year cycle based on radioactive decay. I named it, let's see you do it.
Then let's see how plausible folks here think your story it.

Lee Daniel Crocker writes:
>"data" ... "not quantitative" is a contradiction. Data are numbers.
>Measurements. Surveys. Experimental results. If you can't measure
>it, there's no way to know whether your vague feeling of connectedness
>is something real and testable, or if it's just the wanderings of a
>random pattern-matching machine run amok, finding patterns caused by
>pure chance and baselessly extrapolating them into the future.

How do you ever walk into a new building and find room 225? After
all, your eyes and ears aren't giving your numbers, so there is no
way to know if your vague feeling that you should head toward that
thing that looks like up stairs is something real and testable, rather
than pure chance patterns. Do you really start writing down numbers?

Robin D. Hanson hanson@hss.caltech.edu http://hss.caltech.edu/~hanson/