Jayary 350

We are easily seduced by language. It's the easiest thing in the world to sign over your inheritance to a predatory company or advisor and then be forced to hand over our wealth when they point out our contractual obligations.

For example, consider software engineers. If you work for a software company, you've probably signed over all your intellectual production to the company, even if you're working on a side project at night on your home computer. They may choose to look the other way as you submit an award winning game to the app store, but in principle they own the IP to your late night labours.

It's not just a question of owning the engineer's intellectual labour: it's also about having that engineer be at her best when she shows up to work at 9:00 AM. An engineer who's up until 2:00 AM coding her side project is not as fresh at 9:00 AM as one who tucked herself in at 10 PM.

Discrete truth does a great job of hitting the bull's eye once but it's terrible at accounting for interests and power relations; much like a dead clock that shows the right time twice a day. Like that dead clock, discrete truth is unstable: it's awfully wrong much of the time.

Wasn't that the crux of Draupadi's complaint when she was dragged into the sabha: who gave this man the authority over my body? When did truth shade into power?

Rajesh Kasturirangan

Rajesh Kasturirangan

I think. I write. I meditate. I agitate.