30 April 2007

Understanding As Noise (by G--rge G-ld-r)

[I received a very interesting piece taking issue with my objections to the concept of belief without understanding. It seems that I am not au courant with information theory as it is presently practiced. So today’s guest Rational Ranter is Dr. G--rge G-ld-r, technoguru of universal bandwidth and the “P. T. Barnum of modern information theory.”]

Your sophis and tries amount to nothing more than an argumentum ad consequentiam informed by anti-epistemic materialist cant. Cautionary fables from the Mah Jong aside, information is archetypical and precedes its decryption. Just as the automobile, a phenomenon decried by the most eminent biologists of the nineteenth century, demonstrates empirically that the cart precedes the horse, so belief precedes understanding. An archetypical formation may be addressed by superpositional prestidigitation. Consequently misunderstanding may be avoided only by a process of noetic myopia focused exclusively on the information in question.

In this sense the medieval Bogomils were entirely correct in asserting that the meaning of scripture is only evident to the eye of faith. Attempts to decrypt information without the key of noesis simply introduce noise into the mix. The mathematical theory of misinformation shows that corruption and gibberish both increase exponentially, diagonally in a simple oblique direction. This makes all the difference.

Just as the medieval warm period establishes the preconditions for the feudal state, so the little ice age that follows creates the foundation for capitalism. In each case belief in the system precedes its implementation. Even the reductionist absurdities of Karl Marx’s diacritical materialism precede its implementation in the gas chambers of Nuremburg and the Gulag. Tides and times may come and go, but the substrate of ideas in a text remains eternal. Faith, or something like it, is the key to true interactive realization of a text. This is in no way a matter of Biblical literalism, but if the shoe fits—so be it.

[The rest of the piece involves a proposal for investment in a structure spanning the East River in New York, a project beyond my financial means at this time. sbh]

3 comments:

daveawayfromhome said...

Was that real? Seriously, I dont know when the last time I saw that much jargon in one rather small place. I have a hard time believing anything said by anybody who cannot speak in relatively plain english, which for some would probably include myself, admittedly.

sbh said...

No, I was just having a little fun at George Gilder's expense. Or maybe at my own expense; it's hard to tell sometimes. I had just read some stuff of his about Intelligent Design (quoted at Pharyngula ) that even I could see was bullshit, and my background is in religious history--Christianity, Judaism, and other Greco-Roman cults as one book-title has it. Gilder's style is actually more lucid and graceful than my imitation, but what irritated me was the way he slung jargon around, either to impress the reader or maybe to baffle him. The jargon, the non-sequiturs, and the historical errors got to me. There was at least one word--superpositional, maybe--that I could not see for the life of me why it was there at all. So I amused myself by imagining how Gilder might reply to something I wrote, borrowing his sentence-structures but substituting my own gibberish for his. It was supposed to be amusing, but whether I succeeded in that or not, at least I relieved my own feelings somewhat.

S. Holster said...

WOW, I mean WOW, that was hard to get through, reminds me of 99% of the 'artist statements' I've read. WOW. Good to see that I'm not the only one who finds that level of linguistic obfiscation agitating.

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