Sponsored Content
ę When Friends Attack | Main | "New" Campaign Materials Ľ
April 13, 2008

Engineers Tend To Become Radicals?

Mark Devlin at Industrial Equipment News easily disembowels a 90-page paper written by a couple of Oxford academics.

The authors suppose an interesting direction: engineers radicalize. On the other hand, I donít see the authors trying to prove the reverse: that itís handy and serves many of their purposes for radicals to become engineers.

The following is just incredible (Page 19 if youíre following along). Here, I thought Iíve made some leaps of thought in my timeÖ

Before attempting to explain whatís Ďwrongí with engineers, we must consider the further question of whether they are overrepresented also among a different group of violent Islamic extremists from the ones we considered in the first sample, namely those born in or residents of Western countries who became active in recent times, mostly after 9/11.

Whatís wrong with engineers? How could seemingly intelligent, highly educated (characteristics that arenít necessarily associated) authors (of real books, apparently) begin ANY related thought process in such a way as to assume that thereís something wrong with engineers, and seemingly ignore the radical-TO-engineer direction so very consistently? Anyone care to comment on whatís wrong with sociologists?

The whole column is a joy to read. First, because the excerpts from the paper demonstrate that possession of a PhD is no talisman against profound goofiness. Secondly, because Mr. Devlin disposes of their arduous pap with alacrity.

Savor the difference in the intellectual competence of academics vs. a person who actually has to think for a living.

Please enjoy with my compliments, darling puddin' heads.

Thanks to Tom M.

Just Wondering... [ace] Okay, I know a lot of engineers read this blog and I don't want to piss them off, especially because they can make kickass letter bombs and shit.

I'm just brain-noodling here.

Question: Do any engineers believe their profession is overrepresented by those who are either strongly apolitical -- as in not just apathetic, but anti-political as a matter of considered principle -- or else strong ideological partisans for one party or the other or a fringe group like Libertarians?

Stop. Building. That Letter Bomb.

I'm asking because the engineer's mindset -- and likely then the personality type most strongly attracted to the profession -- is much concerned with streamlining, simplifying, cutting through bullshit, cutting down on wasteful steps, etc. And I wonder if then doesn't result in a tendency towards rejection of politics entirely as simply irrelevant to one's day-to-day life or else a strong identification with one political faction due to identifying one of any key factors (freedom, security, what have you) as primary and discarding most others as secondary at best.

I'm not talking extremists or radicals, necessarily. Just wondering. I really don't know myself; I just think it's an interesting question I'd pose to the engineers... and their girlfriends or boyfriends. (The latter would probably know better.)

I don't know many engineers but a friend of mine seems to me to have the personality type and brain type of engineers. His philosophy of life seems to be reduce all bullshit and all nonproductive/nonpleasurable distractions to zero, sometimes a bit further than I would. (Most guys are like this, anyway, of course; that's why, seriously, we hate holidays and sending cards and crap. It's all artificial nonsense and we rate it all as having low utility. Even though we know our moms and girlfriends like getting cards and thinking-of-you notes, we can't help being annoyed that you guys shouldn't derive any pleasure from that stuff. But I'm thinking engineers might tend to be uber-guys on this score.)

Again, I'm not knocking any engineers and I don't even have much of an anecdotal reason for asking this question at all. I know one dude who isn't even an engineer, he just seems to me to think like an engineer.

I'm just curious about human personality types. I have a pretty good idea what sorts of people are attracted to writing, for obvious reasons. And law. Just based on general lore I have an idea of what types of people become musicians.

I'm just wondering if anyone who actually knows notices any correlations between the engineering profession and personality type and political bent.

digg this
posted by Laura. at 12:29 PM

| Access Comments

Recent Comments
GWB: "And, Weasel, next week will not only be "First Wee ..."

sven: "18 Posted by: Anti doesn't matter at June 26, 2022 ..."

mallfly the Peach of Hoboken: "I wonder how the Sup Ct ruling on NY's gun law wil ..."

Pete Bog: "Hello Gun Threaders. Weasel thank you for another ..."

Former Gun Owner A.H. Lloyd: "Ah guns, the .380ACP is plenty of power. Posted ..."

sven: "15 Posted by: Eromero at June 26, 2022 07:09 PM (0 ..."

GWB: "Made it! ..."

Anti doesn't matter: "Posted by: sven at June 26, 2022 07:06 PM (Lzpvj) ..."

[/i][/s][/b][/u]blaster: "I read the content. Big American Pistol in God's ..."

TeeRoy Jenkins : "For the shooter with the banged up finger. I'd sug ..."

Eromero: "I'm so glad that GOD Willed John Moses Browning be ..."

sven: "7 Posted by: mallfly the Peach of Hoboken at June ..."

Recent Entries

Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64