Sunday, May 29, 2005

Memorial Day reflections on Ideas

It's memorial day - a time to remember the sacrifices many have made for our safety and freedom. The daily dispatches from war zones around the world emphasize that the sacrifices are continuing, and will for the forseeable future.

While I was reflecting on the wars and conflicts this country has been involved in during its relatively short life, I ran across an article on the internet that resonated with my thoughts. It is called Why smart people defend bad ideas. Historically most wars start with a bad idea that was defended to the death (usually someone elses death) by some of the smartest people of their age. The seeds of our revolution were fertilized by smart people promoting and defending bad ideas on how to treat colonies. Vietnam had many famously bad ideas defended by the best and brightest. The tradition continues today. On all levels bad ideas are still defended by smart, dedicated people every day.

We should honor the people who made the sacrifices great and small. One of the best ways we can do that is to examine our ideas, especially the ones we are most sure about. Sacrifices should not be made for bad ideas.

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