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RE: importance of motivation

At 5:00 AM -0400 on 10/3/98, Blanc wrote about Tim's troll:

> : We've had some nutballs and losers (luser spelling: loosers) on this list.
> : People who claim the reason they can't make a coherent argument or hold a
> : steady job is because of something some psychobabbler told them was their
> : excuse.
> .............................................................................
> You're just a bit subtle, Tim.

Nah. Tim is about as subtle as a loud fart in a Volkswagen.

Or a "troll" under a bridge.

But then, of course, there's actual neuroscience.

I'm pretty epistemological about these things. I for one think that
"talking therapy" is half next to witchcraft, and that that, and other
"biological" approaches to knowlege, where you categorize and catalog
things subjectively and then deduce the world accordingly without benefit
of mathematics, or physics, or chemistry is, frequently, a "luser's"
paradise. Phrenology and astrology come to mind, along with, oddly enough,
people who study lightning without physics, and, of course, so-called
"technical" stock market analysts. ("Fibbronacci retracement", my ass...)

However, I *do* know that when I take ritalin, I can do boring stuff much
easier. I'm a very grouchy bastard, but the boring stuff gets done. And, a
very large percentage of people with the DSM-V "diagnosis" of ADHD (H, for
"hyperactive", is Tim's lost initial there, probably a Freudian slip ;-)),
also focus better with ritalin or dexedrine in their bloodstreams, at least
in clinical trials. I also know that when you run PET scans of people who
have ADD (I'm not as hyperactive as I was as a kid...) their brains look
markedly different from those of  "normal" people when they try to
concentrate on something too long.

I expect that, fairly shortly, neuroscience and psychopharmacology will
tell us all sorts of things about things formerly attributed to mysticism,
ethics, poor mental hygeine, and, of course, motivation.

Scientific determinism may be a bitch, but she's sure an elegant one.

Hell, maybe even "losers" will be curable, someday, if they want to be.

Or even cyphertrolls, for that matter.

Yours in dereliction and lassitude,
Bob Hettinga
Robert A. Hettinga <mailto: [email protected]>
Philodox Financial Technology Evangelism <http://www.philodox.com/>
44 Farquhar Street, Boston, MA 02131 USA
"... however it may deserve respect for its usefulness and antiquity,
[predicting the end of the world] has not been found agreeable to
experience." -- Edward Gibbon, 'Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire'