Blackadder’s Lair

The home of many a cunning plan

On Learning to See: What is not Heard

A while back I was talking with a friend of mine and I mentioned that I favored getting rid of the Department of Education. He seemed taken aback. “How could you be against Education!” I explained that I wasn’t against education, just against having a federal Department of Education, and the conversation went on from there.

Now I mention this not because I think the Department of Education is a bad idea (I do, but that’s a separate issue). Rather, I bring the conversation up because it seems emblematic of the way in which our minds play tricks on us when it comes to thinking about social policy. What I said was “I’m against the Department of Education.” But for whatever reason, my friend didn’t hear the words “the Department of.” What he heard was “I’m against education.” Continue reading

February 3, 2008 Posted by | Law, Seeing | Leave a comment