Saturday, January 19, 2019
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Your philosophical search for wisdom, truth, reality, and the facts cannot succeed if you do not make a serious effort to inform yourself about what's actually happening in the world, day by day. For that, you must identify credible sources of information that also make an effort to discover truth and the facts as independent from "spin" and bias as humanly possible. The New York Times, for instance, separates editorializing from news gathering. Fox News misleadingly, with a cynical wink, boasts of being "fair and balanced" while most of its audience understands the joke. And most social media venues like Snapchat don't even make a pretense of pursuing journalistic standards of credibility.
One of the most important reasons for coming to college is to learn how to learn, for the rest of your life. Indispensable to life-long learning is an active and curious interest in what's really going on, fed by regular consumption of credible information and provocative reflection. Form the habit of reading good journalism now, so you won't be a dolt later.
Collect bases and runs in our course by sharing and commenting on news stories and opinion pieces in the Times and elsewhere that capture your interest. Try to "connect the dots" and you'll be a better philosopher.