Sunday, January 16, 2005

Colourless Green Ideas Sleep Furiously

The linguistic mind tricks of the Chomskians at dinner failed to induce the Spring Court ("since 1929") manager to present us with free dessert.

Chomsky's theory of universal grammar, that humans are hardwired with the ability to communicate with language (such capacity not being a product of natural selection); that grammatical principles underlying languages are innate and fixed, and that the differences among the world's languages can merely be characterised in terms of parameter settings in the brain, is interesting in the light of the Genesis account of Babel. He draws his much-criticised theory from the apparent fact that children make certain distinctive errors as they learn a language, whereas other logical mistakes do not occur.

Yet, Chomsky is adamant that the "religious" are intellectually inferior members of the human race. Despite his intellect, he seems blind to the simple logical questions a child would ask of origin of the species and the universe, and in view of his profuse writings and talks on political-moral issues, of the authoritative determination of right and wrong.

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