User:Bradford Robert McCormick

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We learn from others. Picture from:

Robbie McClintock was my dissertation sponsor at TC in the late 1980s/early 1990s. I found him to be a deeply erudite scholar, and a nurturing teacher. He introduced me to books including Elizabeth Eisenstein's "The Printing Press as an Agent of Change" and Rabelais' "Gargantua and Pantagruel".

My dissertation is: "Communication: The Social Matrix of Supervision of Psychotherapy" (1994; UMI #9511056). It is grounded in sources including personal experience, Gregory Bateson's book "Communication: The Social Matrix of Psychiatry", and Jurgen Habermas's "discourse ethics".[1]

To earn a living ("pragmatic agenda" ) I worked 40+ years as a computer programmer[2]. My feelings about computer research and social praxis are summed up in a quote from Clifford Stoll:

"Data is not information, information is not knowledge, knowledge is not understanding, and understanding is not wisdom."[3]

My contributions to A place to study:

"Seedcorn scattered to the wind, knowledge for whoever finds." (Norbert Elias)

"What is the truth? Where did it go?" (Bob Dylan) / "What good is it?" (BMcC)


Old Martinus Nijhoff publisher's mark. Things will come to right. For me, the polar opposite of Narrenschiff (Stultifera Navis), translate: Fools stifle you.

I think the heart of philosophy is "we are a conversation".[8] The denouement of Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit also expresses this. Maybe it is what Robbie is getting at with his "Commons". I believe in the to-date unfulfilled promise of high Western culture, as expressed in Edmund Husserl's lecture "Philosophy and the Crisis of European Humanity" ("Vienna lecture", 1935). If learning is not pleasurable, something is wrong with the learning environment. My favorite author is Hermann Broch. I believe in freedom from enterpri$e, not "free enterpri$e". I love house cats (esp.: "the gentle giants", Maine Coons).

(Logorrhea?) May you find some value here, and, although what I write about is largely not happy, also some enjoyment! Start here. Thoughts? (Invenit et fecit)

I do not like "change".[9] Always: Add value!

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  1. Previous education: I graduated from Yale College in 1968, Summa cum Laude → as I describe it: by avoidance. I avoided every course that I thought I might get a bad grade in or which had a long reading list. I also graduated: idiot, because, as a person without preexisting social connections, I did not take advantage of the opportunity to make some. But that is not quite accurate: I was not even aware that I should or could make connections, or perhaps even what connections are. I was always afraid of the "or else" of getting a bad grade, so I did little other than study. Looking back, in 2020, I wish I had tried to get into Scroll and Key, which would have made me a secret society colleague of Fareed Zacharia. Fool, me!
  2. What is being a computer programmer worker or just doing computer programming apart from working like? I've never tried to build a ship model in a bottle but I think it is something that trying to do it would make me want me to smash the whole goddamned thing and that's what computer programming or writing Wiki pages, etc. often feels like to me. It's claustrophobic. And here is the bitterest joke of all on me (BMcC): As a young person I got into doing it because I thought it would be pure reason and logic raised high above material things. Ha! Ha!
  3. Let me give credit to techies where credit is due: In Septenber 2020, it has been over 20 years since HTML 4.01 became a standard in December 1999. I like HTML 4.01 because it gave me the power to produce elegant web pages, but also techno-naive grandmothers could use it to make webpages of their grandchildren to share with their old biddie friends. Current web browsers still render HTML 4.01/3.2 correctly. Most techies never honored SGML. But at least techno-lefties (of whatever political persuasion, including new-feudalism in AI/VR space) still have not yet exterminated HTML 4.01/3.2 in their march to obscurantist new-release topia. If I could afford it, I'd drink a toast of Green Chartreuse V.E.P. to that (and in that way they might learn that such a thing exists)!
  4. A higher education 3 R's: Research recovers the repressed.
  5. Salvatore Ferragamo (fashion house) advertising slogan.
  6. "The party is my vehicle, never my master." (John Kasich)
  7. Hermann Broch: "Raised high above the clamour of the non-existent."
  8. This can be stated more simply: If I do not care about you, I should have no reason to expect you to care about me. If you do not care about me, you should have no reason to expect me to care care about you. Unless all lives matter, those persons who are not part of the subset of lives that do matter are thereby put on notice that they do not matter. They have been warned to look out for themselves, for the persons who think they themselves do matter will, at best, not look out for them, and said persons further may deem it appropriate exploit them, qua objects, for their benefit.
  9. In my now almost 74 years of life, I have generally found that "change" is a code word for: We persons in power are going to take away from you something you like but we don't care about [you] and give you trouble. I am all in favor of change that builds on what I value to add value to it, and/or takes away something/someone that gives me trouble.

BMcC signature seal stamp. Modelled on 17th/18th century messenger's letter box in collection of Suntory Museum, Tokyo. Japanese write poems and prayers on slips of paper which they tie into knots like this shape although with longer legs. Prayers are often tied to branches of trees which can look like they are covered with snow. "Symbol of a symbol, image of an image, emerging from the destiny that is sinking into darkness...." (H. Broch, "The Sleepwalkers", p.648) Do a Google search on "Robert Capa Trotsky in Copenhagen 1932". Always remember. Always add value.
Invenit et fecit