Sign in  |  Register

The New Criterion

America’s leading review of the arts and intellectual life
- Harry Mount, the London Telegraph

Features

January 2013

A social technology

by Kevin D. Williamson

On humility, complexity, and spontaneous order.


Photo by Richard Bartz, Munich Makro Freak & Beemaster Hubert Seibring, Munich.

A well-known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy. He described how the earth orbits around the sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the center of a vast collection of stars called our galaxy. At the end of the lecture, a little old lady at the back of the room got up and said: “What you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise.” The scientist gave a superior smile before replying, “What is the tortoise standing on?” “You’re very clever, young man, very clever,” s ...

This article is available to subscribers and for individual purchase

Subscribe to TNC (Print and Online editions)

Subscribe to TNC (Online only)

Purchase article credit and clip this article

If you already have an account login first

Kevin D. Williamson is the theater critic for The New Criterion and the author of The End Is Near and It's Going to Be Awesome: How Going Broke Will Leave America Richer, Happier, and More Secure (HarperCollins).


more from this author

This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 31 January 2013, on page 16

Copyright © 2014 The New Criterion | www.newcriterion.com

http://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/A-social-technology-7519

E-mail to friend


The New Criterion

By the author

What about Bob?

by Kevin D. Williamson

Reviews of Antony and Cleopatra, Breakfast with Mugabe, London Wall, and After Midnight

Ideas have consequences

by Kevin D. Williamson

Reviews of Machinal , No Man’s Land, and Philosophy for Gangsters

Out of time

by Kevin D. Williamson

Reviews of Betrayal and King Lear.

You might also enjoy

The second assassin

by Edward Jay Epstein

Was JFK killed because America planned to assassinate Castro?

Team players

by Denis Donoghue

On Shakespeare's collaborations with other writers

All in the family

by Bruce Bawer

On the life and work of Marianne Moore

Most popular

view more >

Subscribe to our newsletter!

* indicates required

Webcasts

Introduction to The Kennedy Phenomenon
Roger Kimball introduces The Kennedy Phenomenon, a conference presented by The New Criterion on Tuesday, November 19.


The Kennedy Phenomenon: "Watching the Kennedy Train-Wreck"
Roger Kimball reads Peter Collier’s paper on oft-overlooked unsavory details of the Kennedys' lives. Much of the paper is drawn from Collier’s book, coauthored with David Horowitz, The Kennedys: An American Drama.


The Kennedy Phenomenon: "The Many Misjudgments of Richard Hofstadter"
Fred Siegel discusses his new book The Revolt against the Masses and the myriad oversights of the historian Richard Hofstadter.