Final Solutions


I think there is a some very unfortunate and distorted thinking taking place, and it concerns two important issues. One is the notion of being right or wrong, and the other is best exemplified by Bruce G’s last post to me.

It seems that the thinking out there is that there are not only right or wrong answers to questions, but that through some genius or authority we can get some final solutions to problems if we can only just find that one ‘right’ answer.

I think this kind of thinking is delusional, and self defeating. This is the kind of thinking best exemplified by pulling the plum out of the pie, or grabbing the golden ring. To me this is equivalent to a belief in magic.

It is not only delusional, but I believe dangerous. It makes us way to comfortable with our own ideas and knowledge, and since most of what each of us walks around with in our heads as it is, is horsebleep, and there is certainly a great deal more that we are ignorant of entirely, I think any time we think we have something down pat, we should have our heads examined for holes.

Bill Powers did a magnificent job of thinking PCT through. But Bill, like us all, is mortal, and does not have at his disposal the truth, nor all the world’s knowledge. No one person does or ever will. He gave it his best shot and for that we all benefited. I am indeed very grateful for the work Bill did. But Bill did not work in vacuum, nor was he the only one who thought about such things in such a fashion. To say and think otherwise is dishonest and misleading.

After all, most of what each of us knows we learned from others. That is not to say we each don’t have our own original ideas, most of us do, but those ideas came from some place, with a way of thinking about things that fostered the ideas we each have come up with.

The trouble is you never, ever know where, or FROM WHOM, the next new idea that gets you moving in a good direction or provides a solution to some long unsolved problem will come from.

Cutting others out because you don’t ‘agree’ with them, is precisely the reason you don’t want to cut them out. In fact these are the people who you want to know about and understand why they differ from you because here is where the real learning takes place. IF YOU HAVE THE STOMACH FOR IT. Not everyone does. It takes a great deal more to be a ‘good’ scientist’ then just brains. You need a very solid tush (i.e. behind) because you are going to be landing on it an awful lot.

Rick yesterday, was largely incomplete in talking about being ‘right’. Being ‘right’ is suitable, significant and important for a single person with a single problem, at a very specific point in time. THAT IS IT. The term has no place in scientific discussion. The cliche; “Success is a fleeting thing”, is said with good cause, as most cliche’s are and come to be in the first place.

I ask those on CSGnet who read my posts to think seriously about this.

I also ask in all seriousness, why I should believe the PCT hierarchy is a more valid and useful construct than the TOTE model?

Does anyone even know of the existence of this? Do you think by not discussing this here on CSGnet that this and other ideas will simply go away?

Bryan, I’ll ask you directly; By denying the work of others, how do you see it benefiting yourself? If I was sitting on your review board and asked you why you felt PCT was superior representation to the TOTE, what would your answer be?

These are difficult questions, and they are intended to be so, but they are not intended to be either contentious, contrary, or destructive.

I am not the only one with these thoughts, believe me.


[From Bruce Gregory (2005.0326.1847)]

I think there is a some _very_ unfortunate and distorted thinking taking place,

I�am _not_ the only one with these thoughts, _believe_ me.

I hope we can deal with these problems without resorting to "The Final Solution."

A true believer knows the solution before he understands the problem.