Our natural aim is to make for ourselves a true personality that does not know defeat... How immeasurably inferior to such a spirit is the fellow who whines and moanes at every evil twist of fortune. He has no confidence in himself an nothing else to do except confide his woes to all who will listen to his cowardly story of defeat. Such men are least useful in the important work of this world. They are the humdrum hirelings-the dumb followers.Next my friend from Allozyne:
Your posts are emblematic of someone who spends a lot of time complaining and little time actually working to try and make a positive impact a.k.a fighting the good fight. You couch yourself as a "leader" and yet your myopic POV is stark evidence that you have never sat at the "big boy" table nor been an influencer in any strategic decision...
I was in fact a mere hireling. In my defence I am certain that I was hired to be a dumb follower. My attempts to alter that reality was met with great opposition. I turned to a simple blog to cleanse the mind. I've never thought of influencing anyone through this medium. To me this has been fun. Writing about the little things is enjoyable. Why does something like biotech, and scientific research in general, fail so often? It's fun to think that you might have a few thoughts on the subject. You are not just a humdrum hireling/dumb follower. In "Laugh and Live" Douglas Fairbanks offers up all kinds of advice on how to become the kind of fellow that was popular back in the early 1900's. In the Cargo Cult Scientist I offer up thoughts on a different kind of thinking. As Steve Jobs said, "Think differently".
My Allozyne detractor is someone I'd like to hear from again. I've taken his comments to heart. I've had the very same ideas leveled against me by a silent movie actor who died in 1939. I hear what they are saying. Am I a loser? That's rhetorical. In many ways the answer is yes. I am a bad fast thinker and a very slow thinker in general. It takes me a while to grasp the meaning of things.
James Randi once created a fake guru to fool the people of Australia. He trained a young man to get on stage and talk to dead people and bend spoons and so on. At the end of the experiment they told the people that the young man was scamming them. The people didn't care. Many still believed in the young man. They wanted to believe the young man. Randi failed to demonstrate to his audience that they were easily fooled. He failed! I think of my failures in the same way. Perhaps I am right about this cargo cult thing. Maybe I am too harsh and there are degrees of CCS to this business. But this is not what people want to hear. The truth, even in the scientific community, is not as influential as more pleasant explanations.
Whether or not I could explain that the correct answer to the "Thinking Fast and Slow" example above to someone who doesn't think it matters, the fact remains that the answer is five cents. I may fail to convince others but I have a way of getting to the truth. That is what I consider success.