Sunday, March 30, 2008

Things that I’ve changed my mind about

I don't take this list to be especially significant. It's one of the more annoying points to make in an argument that while I understand where you're coming from - I used to believe the same thing! - I now see where I went wrong. I am not impressed that C. S. Lewis used to be an atheist. But here's a list, roughly in order of personal significance.

  1. Stopped believing in God (I was very religious).
  2. Became a "vegetarian" (some fish and other seafood) and general animal rights nut.
  3. Went from regular lefty to dogmatic libertarian (this meant changing my mind on many other things as part of the deal; most eye openingly, for no particular reason, about the minimum wage. This also leads to no. 4.)
  4. Used to be very anti-gun. Now I think gun laws are too restrictive.
  5. Inexplicably used to be against getting a cell phone.
  6. Hugely revised my worshipful attitude towards modern medicine in general and doctors in particular.
  7. Admitted to myself that I generally hate the type of movies they show at Cinema Nouveau and most plays.
  8. Changed from being Liverpool to Arsenal supporter (situation is still fluid though).

That'll do for now.

Added: Not sure how I forgot this, but very recently I changed my mind about free will. I now think we have it. This is difficult to rank though, because I've spent ages thinking about the question, but I've never been emotionally invested in either position.


Greg Torr said...

Some of mine:
1. Thought a book called The Pursuit of Loneliness was absolutely brilliant. It espoused a lot of lefty community/environment stuff, which I guess meant that I was one of those lefties at the time too (varsity days). I'd be quite interested to read it again.
2. Thought the Police Academy movies were the greatest ever made. No longer do.
3. At various times, thought the following were the greatest band of all time: UB40, Pink Floyd, Queen. No longer do.

Trevor Black said...

hmmm... wrote and lost a response...

Attempt 2 (shorter, more pissed off).

3) Why `Dogmatic'?
I need more reasons for (2),(4),(6)
7) Nouveau is a lucky packet
8) Turncoats aren't cool.


2) Some movies are best left as fond memories (Stu and I learnt this the hard way with Space Balls)

Some of mine:

1. I was very religious. Am no longer. This had a lot of more specific implications.

hmmm... this is harder than I thought.

2. I have to admit to buying the Titanic Soundtrack.

hmm, perhaps I am as stuborn as a donkey. There must be more things.

Stuart said...

I don't actually believe that I'm dogmatic.

Though I guess that my resistance to much government action in the face of compelling cost benefit analyis does appear dogmatic.

I'll add it to my list, I now believ in free will.

sid said...

I used to think that questioning any religious beliefs will land me in hell. I no longer give a sh*t if it does.

Tyler Cowen said...

Dagmaticism should be avoided.

Anonymous said...

Hey, who is this other, fraudulent Tyler Cowen?

The real Tyler Cowen

Tracy said...

This is fun!

The two biggest things I've changed my mind about are

1)religion, i.e. I am no longer religious

2)food, i.e. I don't eat meat any more and am trying hard to only eat organic eggs and milk when possible. Though I should try even harder.

Other things in recent history would be

1) Science isn't as great as I thought and studying complex open systems like ecological and social, using "science" and "models" is really risky business.

Stuart said...

I'm also constantly downgrading my view of science, especially stuff like astrophysics number theory and stuff like that. now i think its pointless

Tracy said...

Yeh, as fascinating as astrophysics and cosmology can be, I am having doubts whether it's a good thing to spend money on. In fact it's probably a very bad thing to spend money on considering how many important things need funding.

But military expenditure is much costly and I would like to (naively) believe that the world would be a better without any military. However, I still don't know what we should to about the possibility of some megalomaniac building up a vast wealth of arms to take over the world!