Re: 40 LexiLine Newsletter How Old are the Baltic Languages?
> From Anne Beidler:
> I love your answers, but sometimes I weary of your condescending
> tone. Thanks anyway for all the great work you do.
I am sorry for the sometimes condescending tone, but it derives from my constantly facing the vast ignorance and stupidity of mainstream scholarship.
To understand my attitudes, one has to have some short knowledge of my background:
1) I could read and write at age 3
2) I skipped the first grade of school because I had already read all the textbooks required in elementary school up to the sixth grade - the teachers often did not know what to do with me - when the other kids wanted to know the answers to homework questions, they came to me - not the other way around
3) Stanford is the toughest college to get into today in America, I went to law school there
4) Upon graduation I was an associate at what I considered to be the best law firm in America, brain by brain, Paul, Weiss, et al. (see
5) My mentors were, inter alia:
- the late John Kaplan, Prof. of Law, Stanford Law School, a legend
for his brilliance at Harvard who roomed with Derek Bok (later
President of Harvard) - we were good friends until he passed away in
1989 see http://www.andiskaulins.com/selecttops/johnkaplan.htm
- the late Professor Dr. Dr. h.c. Dietrich Andre Loeber of the Kiel Law School whose father was a Supreme Court Justice on the Latvian Supreme Court - we were good friends and stayed in touch until his passing just one week ago
- Peter Haje, Counselor of AOL TIme Warner and former General Counsel and Executive Vice-President of AOL Time Warner, the world's largest communications company
I have been surrounded by brilliant people all of my life and count many as my friends - these are MY peers.
This does not mean I am infallible, but anyone who does not recognize my intellectual capability - as many other brilliant men have - is in my eyes, due to this inability - which is also a function of the level of brainpower available - of lesser rank. With respect to these persons, I am, yes, "a snob".
So what I am I to say about what I face in academica today on the subjects that I write about. My question truly is - who are these people? What is the actual extent of their knowledge and their abilities? How much do they really know? And how much of what they write in their journals is just repetition from their mentors?
Who are the people in academia out there who feel competent to judge my work and ideas? What special competence do they bring to the subjects that I study? What analytical powers mark their work, if any?
I find that many quite normal students have "lernt their lessons well" (i.e. they have learned to regurgitate that which they have been taught in their schooling, without ever thinking for themselves) and I find further that many of these persons - being blessed of no particular abilities or talents - have then struggled up the career ladder and have somehow, somewhere managed to obtain a professorship at some institution (or have inherited their father's business) and now think that these achievements have given them an intellect which they previously never had when they were younger. [I should add that I have friends who have inherited their father's business who are BRILLIANT besides. The one does not exclude the other.]
The same people who were once no match for me in school now suddenly think that their acquired positions have made them smarter. I am now to come to THEM for the answers. Hah! It is a joke, nothing more.
As in the Wizard of Oz, the world seems to operate under the principle that you need a "paper" (documents - or paper money - will do) attesting to your capabilities - but issued by whom? Without such a paper, your thoughts are not worth discussing - that is the modern world.
It is not the case that anyone in academia has ever proven the fundamentals of what I write to be wrong - rather, they think that what they are doing is "right" and that any contrary theory must necessarily be bunk by consequence. That is an attitude of mainstream scholarship which I equate with ignorance and stupidity of the first rank. How can I refrain from being condescending to a group of people whom I simply regard to be intellectually inferior?
A brain of equal intellect you see would look at the IDEAS and discuss the EVIDENCE for or against any theory. WHO you were and WHAT POSITION you had would play no role, since these matters are irrelevant to the truth of any matter in question. But that is not the way the world works. Rather, "authority" is the name of the game. People look to "titles", "academic standing", "connections", etc.
But, in spite of that, a higher intelligence never bows to a weaker one and so much of what I write appears condescending because I simply do not acknowledge the intellect of most of my detractors. They simply do not have the brainpower necessary to judge my work.