One of the most salient features of our culture is that there is so
much bullshit. Everyone knows this. Each of us contributes his share.
But we tend to take the situation for granted. Most people are rather
confident of their ability to recognize bullshit and to avoid being
taken in by it. So the phenomenon has not aroused much deliberate
concern, or attracted much sustained inquiry.
In consequence, we have no clear understanding of what bullshit is,
why there is so much of it, or what functions it serves. ... [continued]
Princeton University Press has now
published this magnificent classic in book form (and additionally has a
fascinating video interview with
Mr. Frankfurt on its web site).
We have thus removed the full text formerly available here.
We highly recommend this poignant piece to those intelligent enough
to understand its import to the current time — and no doubt for
centuries to come. Especially if one reads newspapers (or newsgroups),
watches television "news" (or talk-shows), or listens to "experts" (or
politicians) with that pernicious tendency to press the "Mute" button
on the Critical Faculty ...