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A Nation of Know-It-Alls

Adam's Apple

Senior Member
Apr 25, 2004
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By Heather Robinson, Political Mavens
March 2, 2007

At a recent dinner party, in the aftermath of yet another characterization of President Bush as “arrogant,” “stubborn,” and “stupid,” I started reflecting that we are a nation of know-it-alls.

No wonder we are so quick to perceive arrogance in others, including (supposedly) our President. Raised to cherish our own opinions, we love to spout Â’em, but few of us grasp our infinitesimal smallness against the backdrop of world events or history. Sure, we may look up at the sky on camping trips and ponder the stars, but such exercises in wonder donÂ’t translate into humility when it comes to real life.

Take politics. Heaven forbid we should stop to acknowledge—even to ourselves–the limitations of our own intellect or knowledge. Socrates wrote, “I know nothing except the fact of my own ignorance.”

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