Message - "The Machine in the Garden"

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Posted by  Paul Malo on October 06, 2002 at 06:33:15:

In Reply to:  stephen posted by The myth of machine on October 05, 2002 at 21:15:28:

Leo Marx called his landmark book of cultural history "The Machine in the Garden." It's concerned with technology and the natural order, and eiyh the cultural dislocations entailed in modern technological change.

We have the popular expression about computers: "Garbage in, garbage out." Tools are just tools--how we use the tools is critical. Science and technology have improved the human condition many ways, but they can be used badly, as Nagaski and Hiroshima told us. We have learned not to put our faith in science and technology to lead us. As you say,however, they have made the modern world complex so that our course does not seem self-evident. But we learn, if slowly and at high cost, from experience. Surely we have learned that to try to "control and organize world (society ) systematically and clearly " can be distasterous. That attempt caused much of the agony of the twentieth century. We seem to be in a period of reaction, when "less is more," in the sense of the American president's observation that "the government that governs best, governs least."

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