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A bunch of years ago a professor at the School of Education at a local university called for a public symposium to mark the end of a massive multi-year $50 Million foundation grant to the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) and to examine the results of the project called Learn. For many years banners on Districts school fences announced "We are a Learn school!". People from the District and from the Foundation shared experiences and reluctantly concluded that, honestly, nothing had really changed - the new hoped-for "learning" culture had not arisen and it was pretty much business-as-usual in the classrooms. Why, they wondered. And here's to your point, Seth. The people from the District said they constantly felt hampered by the Foundation's need to see results (test scores) and the Foundation people said they were constantly surprised by the lack of creativity and boldness by the District. There was a moment I will never forget when the leads of both 'sides' looked at each other onstage and said - in essence - Huh, we thought YOU were the problem. Dead silence in the room.

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Wow. This is a striking example, Joan. It also points to the fact that creativity has its own time process, it doesn’t necessarily work with the timelines we give it (and I mean that personally too - I often expect things that I work on to come to fruition at a specific time without giving much thought to their actual organic unfolding). Thanks for sharing it!

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Seth Jordan

Recent article on Pfizer, possibly in the Wall Street Journal or Washington Post, focused on them going against this trend in their research. The result was more rapid development of new products. Even with an a “closed shop” greater freedom to explore the less known has benefits.

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Yeah, there are a number of examples of businesses bucking this trend and giving some amount of pure freedom to their employees. The best known are “20% time” at Google (which gave birth to Gmail) and 15% time at 3M (which gave birth to post-its).

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https://open.substack.com/pub/theoriapress/p/on-the-supposed-dialectic-between?r=hef4u&utm_medium=ios&utm_campaign=post Post by Max Leyf adds to this conversation - he proposes that govt censorship of ‘misinformation’ denied us the pleasure of argumentation to correct I (or confirm earth’s spherical nature)

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Just read it and thought it was quite good. Thanks for passing it along.

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Apr 13, 2023Liked by Seth Jordan

Thanks for this article Seth. Two thoughts came to mind in reading this: firstly, I wonder if computer generated modeling plays into this phenomena. Since scientific research seems to rely on it more and more these days - has it replaced original creative human thinking to some degree? And the second thought is an observation that at the same time disruptive science has been declining, technological advancement [mostly digital tech] has been skyrocketing. I presume this advancement must rely on some amount of new science - nanotech and muons - whatever those things are - yet I suppose the point is that the major theories that made this advancement possible were all laid out by guys like Newton and Leibniz and other dudes that lived a long time ago and who probably had to answer to the church or a king and not some corporate financial backer.

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Yeah, I think the reliance on computers definitely impacts creativity in negative ways unless consciously counterbalanced. Reading about people’s use of chatGPT, a lot of folks are using it to start their writing or creative process for them, and then they’re stepping more into an editing role. That kind of reliance certainly affects one’s inner engagement and the total exercise of one’s creative powers.

At the end you mentioned the king and the church, and it’s interesting to think how patrons have affected these things over the millennia. I think of someone like Goethe doing his experiments on mineralogy and botany and all the rest. At the end of the day, he still has to answer to the Prince, but how much did the prince understand of his work and did he really have any say in its direction? It’s hard to imagine, though I’m sure every situation was different...

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