World-Changing Ideas. Do they pass the absurdity test, per Albert Einstein?

World-Changing Ideas. Do they pass the absurdity test, per Albert Einstein?

| February 22, 2018

Albert Einstein is famous for having said, “If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it.” In recent weeks, Fast Company has reported on some “world-changing ideas,” including:
• Teaching happiness in school. The mandate of a school being built in India will be teaching children how to be happy. One of the co-founders said, “It’s our view that happiness – or emotional intelligence, or balance, or confidence, or self-esteem, or any other word for feeling good about ourselves and our place in the world – is the foundation on which great lives and great achievements
are built.”
• Cancelling student debt. “Collectively, [Americans] owe nearly $1.4 trillion on outstanding student loan debt. Research shows that this level of debt hurts the U.S. economy in a variety of ways,  holding back everything from small business formation to new home buying, and even marriage and
reproduction,” according to a February report from the Levy Economics Institute at Bard College.
The research estimates if the U.S. government purchased and cancelled student loan debt the U.S. economy would increase real gross domestic product – the value of all goods and services produced – by $861 billion to $1,083 billion over 10 years. Also, the step could lead to the creation of more than a million new jobs every year.
• Revitalizing Haiti with blockchain. The details are still being hammered out, but the Blockchain Cotton Project hopes to use distributed digital ledgers (blockchain) to manage supply chains, making it easier and less expensive to source organic cotton. One member of the project said, “We’re still figuring out how the farmers do the live reporting. But we hope it will replace the normal organic or fair trade certification through a radical transparency approach.”
What do you think? Do they pass the absurdity test, ? Or are these ideas too tame?

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Weekly Commentary for February 20, 2018

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