FYI April 26, 2019

On This Day

 
 
1956 – SS Ideal X, the world’s first successful container ship, leaves Port Newark, New Jersey for Houston, Texas.
SS Ideal X, a converted World War II T-2 oil tanker, was the first commercially successful container ship.

Built by The Marinship Corporation during World War II as Potrero Hills, she was later purchased by Malcom McLean’s Pan-Atlantic Steamship Company.[5][6][7] In 1955, the ship was modified to carry shipping containers and rechristened Ideal X. During her first voyage in her new configuration, on April 26, 1956,[8] the Ideal X carried 58 containers from Port Newark, New Jersey, to Port of Houston, Texas, where 58 trucks were waiting to be loaded with the containers.[9] It was not the first container ship, however. The Clifford J. Rodgers, operated by the White Pass and Yukon Route, made its debut in 1955.

In 1959, the vessel was acquired by Bulgarian owners, who rechristened her Elemir. The Elemir suffered extensive damage during heavy weather on February 8, 1964, and was sold in turn to Japanese breakers. She was finally scrapped on October 20, 1964, in Hirao, Japan.

 
 

Born On This Day

 
 
1710 – Thomas Reid, Scottish philosopher and academic (d. 1796)
Thomas Reid FRSE (/riːd/; 7 May (O.S. 26 April) 1710 – 7 October 1796) was a religiously trained Scottish philosopher. He was the founder of the Scottish School of Common Sense and played an integral role in the Scottish Enlightenment. In 1783 he was a joint founder of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. A contemporary of David Hume, Reid was also “Hume’s earliest and fiercest critic”.[6]

Life
He was born in the manse at Strachan, Aberdeenshire, on 26 April 1710 O.S., the son of Lewis Reid (1676–1762) and his wife Margaret Gregory, first cousin to James Gregory. He was educated at Kincardine Parish School then the O’Neil Grammar School in Kincardine.[7]

He went to the University of Aberdeen in 1723 and graduated MA in 1726 (the young age was normal at that time). He was licensed to preach by the Church of Scotland in 1731, when he came of age. He began his career as a minister of the Church of Scotland but ceased to be a minister when he was given a professorship at King’s College, Aberdeen, in 1752. He obtained his doctorate and wrote An Inquiry Into the Human Mind on the Principles of Common Sense (published in 1764). He and his colleagues founded the ‘Aberdeen Philosophical Society’ which was popularly known as the ‘Wise Club’ (a literary-philosophical association).[8] Shortly after the publication of his first book, he was given the prestigious Professorship of Moral Philosophy at the University of Glasgow when he was called to replace Adam Smith. He resigned from this position in 1781, after which he prepared his university lectures for publication in two books: Essays on the Intellectual Powers of Man (1785) and Essays on the Active Powers of the Human Mind (1788). Reid was buried at Blackfriars Church in the grounds of Glasgow College and when the university moved to Gilmorehill in the west of Glasgow, his tombstone was inserted in the main building. See separate article on Thomas Reid’s tombstone.

Philosophical work
Overview

Reid believed that common sense (in a special philosophical sense of sensus communis) is, or at least should be, at the foundation of all philosophical inquiry.[9] He disagreed with Hume, who asserted that we can never know what an external world consists of as our knowledge is limited to the ideas in the mind, and George Berkeley, who asserted that the external world is merely ideas in the mind. By contrast, Reid claimed that the foundations upon which our sensus communis are built justify our belief that there is an external world.

In his day and for some years into the 19th century, he was regarded as more important than Hume.[10] He advocated direct realism, or common sense realism, and argued strongly against the Theory of Ideas advocated by John Locke, René Descartes, and (in varying forms) nearly all Early Modern philosophers who came after them. He had a great admiration for Hume and had a mutual friend send Hume an early manuscript of Reid’s Inquiry. Hume responded that the “deeply philosophical” work “is wrote in a lively and entertaining matter,” but that “there seems to be some defect in method,” and criticized Reid for implying the presence of innate ideas.[11]

Thomas Reid’s theory of common sense
His theory of knowledge had a strong influence on his theory of morals. He thought epistemology was an introductory part to practical ethics: When we are confirmed in our common beliefs by philosophy, all we have to do is to act according to them, because we know what is right. His moral philosophy is reminiscent of Roman stoicism in its emphasis on the agency of the subject and self-control. He often quotes Cicero, from whom he adopted the term “sensus communis”. Reid’s answer to Hume’s sceptical and naturalist arguments was to enumerate a set of principles of common sense (sensus communis) which constitute the foundations of rational thought. Anyone who undertakes a philosophical argument, for example, must implicitly presuppose certain beliefs like, “I am talking to a real person,” and “There is an external world whose laws do not change,” among many other positive, substantive claims. For Reid, the belief in the truth of these principles is not rational; rather, reason itself demands these principles as prerequisites, as does the innate “constitution” of the human mind. It is for this reason (and possibly a mocking attitude toward Hume and Berkeley) that Reid sees belief in the principles of common sense as a litmus test for sanity. For example, in The Intellectual Powers of Man he states, “For, before men can reason together, they must agree in first principles; and it is impossible to reason with a man who has no principles in common with you.” One of the first principles he goes on to list is that “qualities must necessarily be in something that is figured, coloured, hard or soft, that moves or resists. It is not to these qualities, but to that which is the subject of them, that we give the name body. If any man should think fit to deny that these things are qualities, or that they require any subject, I leave him to enjoy his opinion as a man who denies first principles, and is not fit to be reasoned with.”

Reid also made positive arguments based in phenomenological insight to put forth a novel mixture of direct realism and ordinary language philosophy. In a typical passage in the Intellectual Powers he asserts that when he has a conception of a centaur, the thing he conceives is an animal, and no idea is an animal; therefore, the thing he conceives is not an idea, but a centaur. This point relies both on an account of the subjective experience of conceiving an object and also on an account of what we mean when we use words. Because Reid saw his philosophy as publicly accessible knowledge, available both through introspection and the proper understanding of how language is used, he saw it as the philosophy of common sense.

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FYI

 
 

John Joseph “Hondo” Havlicek (/ˈhævlɪtʃɛk/ HAV-li-chek; April 8, 1940 – April 25, 2019)[1] was an American professional basketball player who competed for 16 seasons with the Boston Celtics, winning eight NBA championships, four of them coming in his first four seasons.

In the National Basketball Association, only teammates Bill Russell and Sam Jones won more championships during their playing careers, and Havlicek is one of three NBA players with an unsurpassed 8–0 record in NBA Finals series outcomes.[2] Havlicek is widely considered to have been one of the greatest players in the history of the game and was inducted as a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1984. He was a three-sport athlete at Bridgeport High School in Bridgeport, Ohio.

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