THE DEBATE BETWEEN THE NEO-MATHEMATICIANS AND THE NEO-LITERATI
Mathematicians and literati have never had much to say about each other until the recent advent of the Neo-mathematician and Neo-Literati utopian movements, which has become the breeding ground for a bitter rivalry. Here’s what they have to say:
THE NEO-MATHEMATICIANS’ ARGUMENT: The literati are mostly, if not all, shameless liars. As every librarian knows, most literature is fiction, and even a lot of non-fiction is not really the truth. Mathematics, on the other hand, is an exact science, and numbers don’t lie. Literature is not exact, and there are so many different ways of looking at things that it’s hard to know for sure which ideas are right or wrong. Literature too, with its flowery language, is susceptible to misinterpretations and lies. The written word is often used for propaganda and other deceitful purposes, which often leads to such calamities as war. Wars are never started by mathematicians --we do not engage in such irrational behaviors. If the world could be rid of the scourge of literature, there would finally be peace and prosperity for all. Everything in the universe, including the origin of the universe, can be explained by mathematical formulas, and if the world was ruled by Neo-mathematicians, not only would all wars end, but a perfect world would ensue, because Neo-mathematicians have the solutions to all the world’s problems. The world’s problems are all due to the illusions the literati have created, and we would all be better off if we could get rid of all the literati. If you analyze literature, you can only come to the conclusion that it is really just a superstitious belief, and the idea that literature even exists must be called into question, because you can’t prove literature. If we could rid the world of literature, all men would be equal, because life is a zero-sum game.
THE NEO-LITERATI’S REBUTTAL: We’ve all heard the term “numbers racket”. It’s not called a numbers racket for nothing—all mathematicians are racketeers. They claim that mathematics does away with superstition and irrationality, but they are hiding the fact that there is an infinite number of irrational numbers, and there’s no rational explanation for this. The Neo-mathematicians say that numbers don’t lie, but numbers are used all the time to “prove” lies, for example, politicians quoting phony statistics.
To claim that a world ruled by mathematicians would lead to world peace is also absurd. The nuclear arms race is proof of their obsession with quantity. The United States is always bragging about how they have enough nuclear weapons to kill everyone in the world ten times. Those with the biggest stash of cash rule the world, and they always want more, no matter how much they have. Mathematicians are often so concerned about quantity that they don’t pay enough attention to quality, and that’s why the world is full of useless junk.
Neo-mathematicians criticize literature for having different ways of looking at things. That is because they are narrow-minded and think their way of looking at things is the only way that counts. Talk about flowery language! How about those mysterious mathematical formulas that the mathematicians like to write on blackboards that only they can understand (or pretend to understand)—if all those mathematical formulas aren’t bogus, why can’t they be understood by the rest of us? And what’s all this nonsense about the Big Bang Theory? Talk about superstition! They not only try to tell us that the universe was somehow created from this infinitesimally small particle that somehow blew up and created all the stars and planets and whatever, but also that there is a mathematical formula that “proves” this. The only thing that mathematics proves is that numbers relate to each other in certain predictable ways. Then they try to tell us that the universe is infinite. How can you have a mathematical formula for something that is infinite? If that isn’t irrational, then what is? To claim that mathematics proves that literature doesn’t exist is as absurd as saying that the empirical scientific method proves that the supernatural doesn’t exist.
They claim that all of the world’s problems are caused by literature, but the idea that literature is the cause of many of the world’s problems just doesn’t add up. If people weren’t multiplying all the time, there wouldn’t be overpopulation. If a nation divided cannot stand, the same must be true of the world. Their claim that mathematics makes everyone equal is something you really can’t count on.