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Think!: Why Crucial Decisions Can't Be Made in the Blink of an Eye

Think!: Why Crucial Decisions Can't Be Made in the Blink of an Eye


Think!: Why Crucial Decisions Can't Be Made in the Blink of an Eye

ratings:
3.5/5 (5 ratings)
Length:
6 hours
Released:
Jan 3, 2006
ISBN:
9780743554183
Format:
Audiobook

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Also available as bookBook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook

Description

This isn't the time to Blink. It's time to THINK! -- before it's too late.

Outraged by the downward spiral of American intellect and culture, Michael R. LeGault offers the flip side of Malcolm Gladwell's bestselling phenomenon, Blink, which celebrated impulse thinking over factual knowledge or critical analysis. If bestselling books are advising us to not think, LeGault argues, it comes as no surprise that sharp, incisive reasoning is on the decline, leading our society to incompetence and failure.

Permissive parenting and low standards that have caused an academic crisis among our children -- body weights rise while grades plummet
A culture of image and instant gratification, fed by reality shows and computer games, that has rendered curiosity of the mind and spirit all but obsolete
Stress, aversion to taking risks, and therapy that are replacing the traditional American "can do" mind-set

Far from perpetuating the stereotype of the complacent American, LeGault maintains that Americans are abundantly gifted with the ability to fulfill our nation's greatest potential starting today but we need smart teachers, health care workers, sales representatives, students, mechanics, and leaders to make it happen. A bracing wake-up call to America, THINK! delivers a no-holds-barred prescription for reversing the erosion of American civilization.
Released:
Jan 3, 2006
ISBN:
9780743554183
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook


About the author

Michael R. LeGault is an award-winning editor and writer, and a former columnist for the Washington Times. His reviews, opinion columns, and features have appeared in newspapers, journals, and magazines across North America. An American citizen based in Toronto, LeGault has worked for and been a consultant to major U.S. companies on health, safety, environmental, and quality issues. He received his B.S. from the University of Michigan and his M.S. from the University of Miami, Florida. LeGault is currently an editor at the National Post. He and his wife, Anneli, have two children.


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3.4
5 ratings / 5 Reviews
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  • (5/5)
    I really enjoyed this book. It was, in a lot of ways, a counter-argument to the widely popular book, Blink. Michael R. LeGault brought out the heavy artillary to get the point across that Americans basically need to grow up and start critically thinking again. He touched on subjects such as our parenting styles today, our thinking process when it comes to politics, our seemingly favorite saying we love to use, the "I'm too busy," and how most "stress" is a myth, and the negative effects of information overload. He also talked about the damaging affects of our massive amounts of TV watching, video game playing that our young kids are wasting not only their time with, but their brains as well. Michael R. LeGault talked about so many other topics and he also gives his opinons on how to save American culture and society, one mind at a time.A great read...a must read in my opinion.
  • (4/5)
    This book decries the dumbing down of America and the lack of use of logic and reason and the scientific method to solve problems. An antidote to Malcolm Gladwell's book Blink.
  • (3/5)
    I had not heard of "Blink: How to Think Without Thinking" by Malcolm Gladwell until I had read this book, in which Mr. LeGault is trying to disprove. However, through the interrogation of Mr. LeGault's writing I see there are fine lines that are crossed, in which have no affect on the other side of the dispute. Hey, I'm all up for passion on critical thinking - but his ways of summing it up just didn't make ends meet. I see nothing wrong with thinking things through and truly placing emphasis - but I do believe humans were also designed with gut feelings and nerve endings that share a common denominator. I do believe that America's intellect and culture is much different than how it should be; but not just critical analysis and knowledge will solve that. There are plagues among the twenty-first century that are not all based upon our intellect (although I know it is a major part). The way we've become - they way we are - the way we will be - is apart of our choices. But, daily allurements and such pull us away from critical thinking, and the way the earth has changed from the centuries has the human race changing as well.
  • (3/5)
    This book is marketed as a refute to "Blink: How to Think Without Thinking" by Malcolm Gladwell. As such, it makes frequent mention of "Blinklike moments" or "Blinklike logic". But, this is only clever marketing: Mr. Gladwell doesn't say we SHOULD think without thinking, only that we do. Fact of life. Learn when to trust your gut and when not to.Mr. LeGault argues that the American population is actively discouraged from critical thinking by television, permissive parenting, ideology and the focus on self-esteeem. I'm not convinced. What I do know is that, without the references to "Blink", I wouldn't have bought this book. So, I guess the marketers deserve a star or two. If you think you might like to read this book, do it soon. It is very much about current events and will not stand the test of time.
  • (2/5)
    I wish that people who encourage critical thinking would set a better example. I agree with LeGault on its importance, but his presentations simply don't illustrate it. I will take his discussion of Harvard President Larry Summer's remarks about women in science as an example. (Chapter 5: "The Rise of the Political and Correct, the Fall of the Smart and Quick.") LeGault gives us conflicting statements by "experts", claiming that men's and women's brains are/are not different from one another without demonstrating how the opinion that he agrees with is a better example of clear thinking; it is apparently supposed to be intuitively obvious. His argument is something like this: Premise 1: "Men's and women's brains are nearly as distinct from each other as their bodies are." Premise 2: "... on the basis of decades of test scores and grades ... women appear to have less 'intrinsic aptitude' then men in math and the sciences". Conclusion: "... women are not in fields such as science and math ... [as] a result of choices made by women, or gender differences in cognitive skills". Sound logical? It's actually very shaky reasoning. For the sake of argument, please grant me that the two premises are individually true. It still risks a serious False Cause error to assume that Premise 1 causes Premise 2. (One may read up on this fallacy in LeGault's Chapter 11.) LeGault himself notes: " ... the presence of many high-profile women scientists across all branches of the natural and physical sciences ... ". Oh, there MIGHT be a connection, but no actual evidence is advanced. The fact that some women are scientists and most men are not ought to make one skeptical. Using "men" and "women" in this case is probably a bad choice of categories. Suppose that scientists tend to have a particular bundle of qualities, call it Q. The issue then is Q and non-Q, gender is a pointlessly crude substitute. Further, LeGault gives us no figures, not a meta-analysis nor a range of results for Premise 2. Statistically significant differences are not necessarily practically significant differences. If 30% of all men and 25% of all women were Q, the difference could be real, but would it be important? We can't tell how the supposed differences match up with the distribution of the genders in tenured positions. The most serious problem with his reasoning is that even if Premise 1 causes Premise 2, AND the figures matched up with male/female ratios in math and science, it would be still be irrelevant. Summers was specifically speaking of women who took advanced graduate training, not women in aggregate. These women are not described by gender averages: they wouldn't have made it into advanced training if they didn't have the aptitude and interest. And yet LeGault describes Summer's views as " ... largely grounded in factual evidence and reason." I agree with LeGault about the dangers of political correctness; liberal columnist E. J. Dionne once made similar remarks about "code words" stifling discussion. However, I am 53 having been born in 1953, and I have an inconveniently long memory for "now vs then" arguments. LeGault is ahistorical in his criticisms. He comments that owing to political correctness, we can " ... approach the issue of gender discrepancies ... only on the path marked 'lack of self-esteem and self-confidence' not on the trail designated 'different intrinsic attitudes.'" We have already tried the latter trail: I can remember when there was a public school that specialized in scientific and technical training, for BOYS who had the aptitude. Girls were not admitted, whatever their gifts. Am I willing to assume that we are past all that now? No, I've read way too much history to believe that. Ii is important, at the same time, to realize that this information doesn't disprove what Larry Summers said, either. The most important thing to understand is that it is the wrong information, improperly construed. If Summer's reasoning was based on the evidence that LeGault gives us, he wasn't thinking too clearly, however right or wrong time may show him to be. For critical thinking, I recommend Darrell Huff's classic How to Lie with Statistics. It is both a model for reading and for writing.