24 February 2008

About 'Where We Make Our Stand'

I feel it necessary to do an actual full explanation of this blog because my first post didn't do a very good job.


The name comes from a line out of a very long quote from Carl Sagan concerning this photo, the pale blue dot. The quote can also be read at the above link or watched right below:

This photo really says a lot to me, and I think Carl echoes my thoughts exactly right at the end there:

"...it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known."


The fact that we as a species have survived ourselves this long is somewhat shocking in itself. Most likely we've lasted thus far because for the majority of our existence we simply haven't had the capacity to utterly and completely destroy ourselves such as we have now. We only get one shot at this, there is no reset button, no mulligans. Today's fast paced high powered world is already accelerating far beyond the bounds of what we are at the evolutionary level to handle. I don't claim to be an expert on the subject, (hopefully one day I can though) but I think it would be safe to assume that we have not as a species undergone any very significant evolutionary change in the last two millennia. Think about where we what society was like when Jesus was "curing lepers" and "walking on water," and then think about what society is like now. We live in a world where the line between man and machine is being blurred incredible advances in nanotechnology and between man and animal by genetic engineering. Our mathematical understand of universe is already far beyond what our brains have evolved to understand. I am not saying this is not a good thing, not at all, but just that we are far past the point where our species can survive by adhering to bronze age superstitions and attempts at philosophy in order to understand the world around us. We must as a global society overcome our evolutionary limitations and work for the betterment of the human condition. That is why this blog will focus primarily on the advocation of reason and rational thought to solve the problems that confront us today. If we don't, and we continue to squabble over our petty differences and attempt to confront our problems with our age old superstitions, we simply will not make it.

This will not be the only function of this blog though, as that would get a little boring, both for me and for you. I'll also focus a great deal on politics, particularly because politics and religion's trespasses against liberal society seem to have become intertwined lately, and on any other random things I find interesting.


My name is Jeremy Jackson Berg. I am a freshman at the University of Wisconsin-Madison pursuing a double major most likely in biology and religious studies. I am a chronic overachiever who has way more goals than are possible to accomplish in one lifetime and also a procrastinator (most likely when I write blog posts, it's because I'm procrastinating), so, as you can imagine, that works out really well. I am very into competitive running, and run cross country and track with the Wisconsin Track Club, because I haven't realized the glory days of high school running are over and was too stubborn to go to a school where I had a legit chance of making the team. I grew up in po-dunk little Marshfield, WI, where there just plain isn't much to do. To be fair, it's a great place to raise a family, but a terrible place to be seventeen years old.

I plan on living out the rest of my life on a college campus (or various ones) somewhere, as there really is no better place to be, learning for probably the next 8 years and eventually teaching at some point. I typically have strong criticisms of the way we do things here in American and a sort of delusion that I may some day just skip the country and head to a more civilized Europe. (It's a good thing I don't plan to run for political office as that would've just about killed any chances there, someone'll dig that up if I ever try.) That'll probably never happen though because there's just something about the familiarity of this mixed up country that would be hard to leave behind.

I think that's enough about me. This post will undoubtedly change in the future as I update it to reflect present conditions.

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