Tuesday, March 16, 2010

FLG Wonders

FLG knows to whom David Brooks was referring here:
To help us in this social world, God, nature and culture have equipped us with a spirit of sympathy. We instinctively feel a tinge of pain when we observe another in pain (at least most of us do). We instinctively mimic, even to a small extent, the mood, manners, yawns and actions of the people around us.

The first sentence of the next paragraph gives it away completely:
To help us bond and commit, we have been equipped with a suite of moral sentiments.

The answer is Adam Smith and his work, The Theory of Moral Sentiments. FLG felt a small tinge of self-satisfaction in making that connection, but he almost immediately asked himself why he felt it? Does it help him in any way to understand that article better? Not particularly. Does it make him feel superior to the unwashed masses for whom the reference by Brooks went uncomprehended? Perhaps, but that's pretty shitty and not very FLG-esque. Plus, as FLG just pointed out, having read The Theory of Moral Sentiments doesn't provide any tangible benefit when reading the article. Brooks summarizes nicely and then moves on to develop his argument.

So, FLG felt superior for a moment before checkity-checking himself, before he wrecked himself. Also, while I'm on the Walken theme, him reading Lady Gaga's Poker Face is fucking hilarious:

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