George Gilder

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Let there be light, says the Bible. All the firmaments of technology, all our computers and networks, are built with light, and of light, and for light, to hasten its spread around the world.

George Gilder (born November 29, 1939) is an American conservative philosopher, futurologist and author.

Quotes[edit]

From Newton, Maxwell, and Einstein to Richard Feynman and Charles Townes, the more men have gazed at light, the more it turns out to be a phenomenon utterly different from anything else.
First and most important, most of the boys and a good number of the girls are thinking about the opposite sex most of the time. If you do not believe this, you are a dreamer. The only thing about a classroom more important to adolescent boys than whether girls are present is whether or not it is on fire.
  • Futurists falter because they belittle the power of religious paradigms, deeming them either too literal or too fantastic.
    • Telecosm : How Infinite Bandwidth Will Revolutionize Our World (2000), p. 3 ISBN 9780743215947
  • Let there be light, says the Bible. All the firmaments of technology, all our computers and networks, are built with light, and of light, and for light, to hasten its spread around the world. Light glows on the telescom's periphery; it shines as its core; it illuminates its webs and its links. From Newton, Maxwell, and Einstein to Richard Feynman and Charles Townes, the more men have gazed at light, the more it turns out to be a phenomenon utterly different from anything else. And yet everything else — every atom and every molecula — is fraught with its oscillating intensity.
    • Telecosm : How Infinite Bandwidth Will Revolutionize Our World (2000), p. 31
  • I'm not pushing to have [ ID ] taught as an alternative to Darwin, and neither are they... What’s being pushed is to have Darwinism critiqued, to teach there’s a controversy. Intelligent design itself does not have any content... Much of what I've written about has been in reaction to the materialist superstition, the belief that the universe is a purely material phenomenon that can be reduced to physical and chemical laws. It's a concept that's infected the social sciences as well.
    • Replies when he asked the reasons why he supported the Intelligent Design movement, in his interview with the Boston Globe (27 July 2005)
  • The analogy between Shannon and codes in biology isn't something that sprang from my belief in God... except maybe on some deeper or more transcendent level.
    • Interview with the Boston Globe (27 July 2005)
  • Academic scientists of any sort expect to be struck by lightning if they celebrate real creation de novo in the world. One does not expect modern scientists to address creation by God. They have a right to their professional figments such as infinite multiple parallel universes. But it is a strange testimony to our academic life that they also feel it necessary of entrepreneurship to chemistry and cuisine, Romer finally succumbs to the materialist supersition: the idea that human beings and their ideas are ultimately material. Out of the scientistic fog there emerged in the middle of the last century the countervailling ideas if information theory and computer science. The progenitor of information theory, and perhaps the pivotal figure in the recent history of human thought, was Kurt Gödel, the eccentric Austrian genius and intimate of Einstein who drove determinism from its strongest and most indispensable redoubt; the coherence, consistency, and self-sufficiency of mathematics.
    Gödel demonstrated that every logical scheme, including mathematics, is dependent upon axioms that it cannot prove and that cannot be reduced to the scheme itself. In an elegant mathematical proof, introduced to the world by the great mathematician and computer scientist John von Neumann in September 1930, Gödel demonstrated that mathematics was intrinsically incomplete. Gödel was reportedly concerned that he might have inadvertently proved the existence of God, a faux pas in his Viennese and Princeton circle. It was one of the famously paranoid Gödel's more reasonable fears. As the economist Steven Landsberg, an academic atheist, put it, "Mathematics is the only faith-based science that can prove it."
    • Knowledge and Power : The Information Theory of Capitalism and How it is Revolutionizing our World (2013), Ch. 10: Romer's Recipes and Their Limits

Sexual Suicide (1973)[edit]

New York: Quadrangle Books.
  • Nonetheless, a kind of Gresham's law applies. Bad sex drives out the good, and the worst of all- philandering and homosexuality- are exalted. Gay liberation, pornographic glut, and one-night trysts are all indices of sexual frustration; all usually disclose a failure to achieve profound and loving sexuality. When a society deliberately affirms these failures: contemplates legislation of homosexual marriage, celebrates the women who denounce the family, and indulges pornography as a manifestation of sexual health and a release from repression- the culture is promoting a form of erotic suicide. For it is destroying the cultural preconditions of profound love and sexuality; the durable heterosexual relationships necessary to a community of emotional investments and continuities in which children can find a secure place.
    • p. 5
  • In the most elemental sense, the sex drive is the survival instinct: the primal tie to the future. When people lose faith in themselves and their prospects, they also lose their procreative energy. They commit sexual suicide. They just cannot bear the idea of "bringing children into the world." But it is a kind of aimless copulation having little to do with the deeper currents of sexuality and love that carry a community into the future.
    • p. 8
  • Marriage is not simply a ratification of an existing love. It is the conversion of that love into a biological and social continuity transcending any two individuals. The very essence of such continuity is children- now fewer than before but retained far longer within the family bounds. Regardless of whether a particular couple is getting married for the companionship or psychoindustrial energy or sexual massage, one must separate the professed motives of the individuals from deeper sexual and evolutionary propensities. All sorts of superficial deviations and distortions- from homosexual marriage to companionate partnership- can be elaborated on the primal foundations of human life. But the foundations remain. The natural fulfillment of love is a child, and the fantasies and projects of the childless couple may well be considered as surrogate children.
    The essential pattern is clear. Women manipulate male sexual desire in order to teach them the long-term cycles of female sexuality and biology on which civilization is based. When men learn, their view of the woman as an object of their own sexuality succumbs to an image of her as the bearer of a richer and more extended eroticism and as the keeper of the portals of social immorality. She becomes a way to lend elaborate continuity and meaning to the limited erotic compulsions of the male.
    • p. 56-57
  • This intuition of mysterious new realms of sexual and social experience, evoked by the body and spirit of woman, is the source of male love and ultimately of marriage. In evoking marriages love renders the woman transparent: The man sees through her, in a vision freighted with sexual desire, to the child they might have together. For it is a child that he might have only if he performs a role: only if he can offer, in exchange for the intense inner sexual meanings she imparts, an external realm of meaning, sustenance, and protection in which the child could be safely born. Both partners consciously or unconsciously glimpse a future infant- precarious in the womb, vulnerable in the world, and in need of nurture and protection. In the sweat of their bodies together, in the shape and softnesses of the woman, in the protective support of the man, the couple senses the outlines of a realm that can endure and perpetuate their union.
    At the deepest level, therefore, love and marriage are based on this complementary pattern. The man's most profound and indispensable life must be experienced through the woman; she is the master of their sexuality. Meanwhile the woman's external existence will to some extent be sustained and protected by the man; he gives space for their worldly haven. This may be the very essence of a closed marriage but it is the essence of the institution itself.
    • p. 57
  • Let us begin with a few simple, crucial, and apparently unmentionable facts about a typical high school classroom. First and most important, most of the boys and a good number of the girls are thinking about the opposite sex most of the time. If you do not believe this, you are a dreamer. The only thing about a classroom more important to adolescent boys than whether girls are present is whether or not it is on fire.
    Advocates of coeducation will tell you that the boys are learning to regard the girls as "human beings" rather than as sexual objects. These are the kinds of people who imagine that most males anywhere, under any circumstances- short of affliction by senility, homosexuality, or Bella Abzug- ever refrain from regarding females as sexual objects. These are the "imaginative" types of people who run our schools. They tend to think that their sexual interest in budding adolescent girls is their own secret perversion. It happens to be shared by the boys in the school (as well as by all the other male teachers).
    If the educator is particularly creative and imaginative, he will suppose that these young "human beings" are learning a lot about life in their work together. What in fact the boys are learning is that unless they are exceptionally "bright' and obedient, they will be exceeded in their studies by most of the girls. Unless you are imaginative, you will see that this is a further drag on their already faltering attention to Longfellow's Evangeline. Clearly in a losing game in masculine terms, the boys react in two ways: They put on a show for the girls and dominate the class anyway, or they drop out. Enough of them eventually drop out, in fact, to disguise the otherwise decided statistical superiority of female performance in school. But they do not drop out soon enough to suit educators for whom aggressive boys are the leading problem in every high school.
    • p. 207-208

Quotes about Gilder[edit]

  • George F. Gilder has written an important book called Sexual Suicide in which he examines a wealth of anthropological, economic, social, and psychological data. He then proceeds to explain why family breakdown is the chief cause of the problems that have come down with such force upon our country in recent years. The women's-liberation programs- many of them fostered by women with lesbian tendencies- have weakened family ties and worsened these problems. Gilder points to statistics that prove single men are the chief source of crime and social disruption. He argues convincingly that marriage is essential to male socialization in the modern world.
    • Anita Bryant, The Anita Bryant Story: The Survival of Our Nation's Families and the Threat of Militant Homosexuality (1977), p. 53-54
  • He describes homosexuality as a "flight from identity and love," the "gay liberation" movement as an "escape from sexual responsibility and its display a threat to millions of young men who have precarious masculine identities." Women's liberation he looks upon as a destructive fantasy. "There are no human beings; there are just men and women, and when they deny their divergent sexuality, they reject the deepest sources of identity and love. They commit sexual suicide." The More I read, the more sick at heart I became and the fighting spirit within me grew. I had to look up words and terms- this was a whole new area of thinking for me. "Oh, dear Lord, has this been going on all around me? I've been so indifferent, so careless..." Because I knew my Bible I recognized the perils of homosexuality. But even if one did not know or accept the Word of God, common sense indicates that homosexuality is against nature and not normal and therefore not to be encouraged.
    • Anita Bryant, The Anita Bryant Story: The Survival of Our Nation's Families and the Threat of Militant Homosexuality (1977), p. 55
  • Gilder's analysis saddened me considerably. Despite the romantic propaganda about male homosexual relationships, it is, in fact, agonizing for most of its practitioners. Lasting relationships are few and sour. Gratifications are brief and squalid- "gay" bars, street cruises, forlorn personal advertisements. These do not afford the kind of love the homosexual needs. Gilder warns that heterosexual society should not praise or affirm the homosexual alternatives or acquiesce to their propaganda. It is tragic if the cultural surroundings provide more easily for homosexuality than for recovery of normal patterns. Cities like Miami, which would give in to homosexual demands, are doing the homosexuals no favor. It is far better to help an individual recover from his dejection- whatever has led him into such a debased way of life- restore his confidence, and help him return to full heterosexuality. A society that condones homosexual behavior is a society that is uncaring, for it is allowing an individual to fall prey to sexual self-destruction.
    • Anita Bryant, The Anita Bryant Story: The Survival of Our Nation's Families and the Threat of Militant Homosexuality (1977), p. 55-56

External links[edit]

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