Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Outliers and Joe Wilson

Once again I'm too tired from having worked all night to do an actual piece, not even the one I have planned and already written, most of all.

For a truly condensed version, here's a heavily-edited version of a comment I left on another blog:
If I hadn't misplaced my copy of Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers for a few weeks after I got it, I wouldn't just have read the chapter called "Harlan, Kentucky" today. I think the culturally-determined behavior Gladwell describes there may help to explain WIlson's allegedly spontaneous outburst. Here's an excerpt:

In light of what Gladwell says here, I have changed my opinion of Joe Wilson.

And another comment I've left in two places on Facebook:
Wilson called Obama out, challenged him in public in a no-lose situation. Malcom Gladwell has a chapter in "Outliers" on this behavior.

Unfortunately, the only appropriate response within the paradigm in which Wilson is operating would be for Obama to respond the way that Keyser Söze responded to the men who had attacked his family. Since that's not going to happen, Wilson wins. And the Repugnicants look even more Repugnant as a result.
Eventually you'll get to see the whole thing...maybe.

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