|Reviews for Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality|
| Beyond Hope chapter 38 . 9/20
In a few days I'll be going to my high school reunion and probably see my philosophy teacher again... I swear if I had read this story when I still had mandatory philosophy lessons, he would seriously thow me out of the classroom due to all of my nitpicking and arguing with him about almost everything he said... It was a close call before your Harry, but should I know him before...
| Chicwowwow chapter 38 . 9/8
Despite knowing that it is good for my literary self, I'm just having a really hard time seeing a character being equal too and, in fact, regularly trumping the main character (being Harry). Your story continues to astound.
| Gwen chapter 38 . 6/29
So, I guess that Harry is reading science reviews from the future than, because up until the opening narration I had figured this was set in the mid 2000s (where it feels like a lot of the plot came from) and pinned it to 2006 when they started talking about Carbon Nanotubes and specified that they had been discovered earlier that year, because those were first discovered in that year.
And that is 14 years in the future.
| ack1308 chapter 38 . 4/7
Dialogues with Lucius Malfoy. The guy has style. Even if he might not be a Death Eater.
| Darrk Rabbit chapter 38 . 3/6
My previous comment didn't post for some reason. I'm just testing something woth thos, so ease ignore this comment.
| The Anguished One chapter 38 . 6/16/2016
Love the vendor and Harry's banter together. Very funny. As for Draco, I feel bad for him. He's so torn between fear of his father, wanting to learn more about rationality, and being there for Harry.
| herbsandlemons chapter 38 . 4/4/2016
So Does Lucius think that Harry Potter is actually Voldemort? The conversation doesn't make a lot of sense otherwise... That emphasis he put on Mr. Potter was what caught my interest -and then Lucius' surprise at Harry answer about Draco being his friend, maybe he thinks now that Harry Potter maybe some weird combination of both. And that's what frightens him or maybe its just the thought that Tom Riddle is alive again?
| Montara chapter 38 . 1/22/2016
I know Lucius is a dark wizard so I shouldn't find him fascinating :D But him being so papa-bear was ... I liked that! And his power! No wonder he's feared!
| IsileeTandem chapter 38 . 12/21/2015
Is he using Ender's game as a point of reference for some of his actions? I suddenly realized both the water thing and something else i can't remember are from there.
| WatchingTheWatchman chapter 38 . 12/7/2015
At least Harry has learned something about keeping his mouth shut when he doesn't know what's going on, but apparently not enough. I can't wait to see the fallout from this little encounter
| jackalopian chapter 38 . 11/7/2015
The best part is when as the plots get ever crazier and Harry seems ever deeper entwined... all of a sudden he comes clean and it makes no sense but it works to mess other people up. It's really fantastic to have "coming clean" like that work out so well in the story because how often do we think to ourselves "why don't they just tell someone else" "keeping it all to yourself doesn't actually help your psyche" and then presumably most of us remember that actually coming clean to someone about your ignorance or failure or stupidity is actually really really REALLY hard. It's not easy (even though Harry makes it appear so here sometimes) So the fact that Harry is able to pull it off is a 1 in my books.
| ShadowLDrago chapter 38 . 10/20/2015
Good to know that for all his faults, Lucius truly does care about Draco.
| P. P. P chapter 38 . 9/13/2015
I wish I knew why Draco is flipping out, but I'm of sub-par intelligence at best.
| Rabid fan girl chapter 38 . 8/17/2015
I love u I love u I love u I love u I looooorrrrvvveee uuuuuuuuu I lurve youuuuuuu I love youuuuuuuu I want u to father my babies i luuurrve uuuuu
| Concolor44 chapter 38 . 5/25/2015
Maybe Lucius wasn't the leader of choice. That doesn't mean he isn't FREAKING DANGEROUS.
| PA chapter 38 . 5/20/2015
Eleven year old Draco shrieking ... not sure if it's much more diginified than portrayed in the movies.
| Village-Mystic chapter 38 . 3/23/2015
Meaning that Harry doesn't know all of the political implications and meanings of the discussion - or that he was oblivated?
| LauraDragon chapter 38 . 3/15/2015
And, how many times have you heard Draco shriek in horror, exactly?
| Jillian A.K chapter 38 . 3/12/2015
Ok. Now that the story is wrapping up, can you please provide the decoder ring for what conversation Lucius thought he was having with Harry?
| Guest chapter 38 . 3/1/2015
in hindsight it's amusing that Harry really is 65 years old, the dark lord has returned, Harry really did have a relationship with belattrix and something funny is going on with Sirius and Peter
| Riniko22 chapter 38 . 2/20/2015
Oh, that last was just a blast. And I forgot to add this on the last chapter. I have been worried about what the potion did to Petunia too, as Harry has been. It seems to have kept her from having her own child, unless that was something both of Harry's parents decided against.
| MeiPhantomhive chapter 38 . 9/21/2014
Here, here, Princess Mallie (LUV THAT NICKNAME). Have some cookies. No, they don't contain some of those green sodas you bought. Yes, I'm not fooling you.
| thepkrmgc chapter 38 . 8/2/2014
yay for politiking with the elder malfoy!, now if only i (or harry) had any idea what was really going on...
| Tallman7 chapter 38 . 6/13/2014
Great ending to that one.
| silverrain-shiningsun chapter 38 . 5/20/2014
Neville spoke first, his voice weary. "You're going to try to fix all the changes she approves of, right?"
"Not all of them," Harry said innocently. "I just want to make sure I'm not corrupting you."
| Grizzmon chapter 38 . 1/13/2014
Hahaha, sometimes I wonder, is Harry insane?
| CMVreud chapter 38 . 12/31/2013
And there one thought he learned from the Snape-incident.
| onlytoask chapter 38 . 12/1/2013
I have no idea what Draco's father was talking about with Harry so I am very confused. Still a great chapter though.
| 567zoock67 chapter 38 . 11/28/2013
Ahaha, the last line to this chapter was hilarious! Oh I love the subtle way of describing things in this story. You know, apart from being a purely GENIUS science fiction story, it is also a magnificent piece of literature, and contains all the prose and figurative language, (and executed to a high level too) that a literature piece contains.
I loved Harry explaining things to Draco, as well as Lucius' conversation with Harry. Also, I'm guessing that when Lucius tapped his cane, he was using Neville's magic to fuel that action, as Neville collapsed afterwards. Though that would imply his cane somehow has the ability to use someone else's magic, which is interesting, perhaps his cane is a dark magic artefact? Or maybe he was using a spell in his head, and the spell caused it to happen, using Neville's magic? Gah, so confusing!
| addikhabbo chapter 38 . 8/19/2013
| whenithitsthefan chapter 38 . 7/7/2013
Does Remus Lupin ever come into this story? Just wondering...Imlike his character. I'd expect Harry having a field day trying to figure him out.
| Anon chapter 38 . 7/4/2013
Oh Draco, your horror is so amusing
| L.E chapter 38 . 5/14/2013
Awesome representation of Lucious, and I wonder if he really didn't join the death eaters willingly, maybe he was imperioused. That was a very funny bit at the end also!
| RussianDestruction chapter 38 . 4/28/2013
Poor Draco...and I almost felt bad for Lucius for a while there, too!
| BiblioMatsuri chapter 38 . 1/4/2013
Harry is going to die either a painful, screaming death or a humiliatingly mundane one.
| crazy-n-insane chapter 38 . 1/1/2013
I have to admit something. If the start, and the end are memorable, the whole story certainly is. And that is something that I have to give to you...while your introductions and endings are typically humorous, or strike at the right part, the body is quite impressive. This whole battle, the generals, the plotting, the hat and the cat, quintuple to quadruple agents, that chapter with the acts with act 3 missing...all of it keeps on building in beautiful harmony, with each part falling into place.
There is a suitable mix of innocence, the childish sort and the inexperienced sort. Include Harry's crazy moments of explaining the process of his thinking, and two strong rivals to encourage and challenge him where he is weak, and you've got a wonderful collection of characters. Zabini's traitorism running in the family, Neville becoming a chaos hufflepuff, the discouraging muggle parents and the strange adult wizards (Professors and others) who take 11 year olds with enough seriousness.
And the OC moments! They're lovable! Especially with Draco! 3 3
Meet the next one tomorrow :D
| StrangeoneXD chapter 38 . 12/21/2012
I would have loved to hear that shriek...
| 1000Nachts chapter 38 . 11/8/2012
Did Harry just unintentionally promise to become the next Dark Lord and wield Draco as his follower? That's the vibe I'm getting. This cannot turn out well. Plans will be made now. Lets hope none of the players screw this up to badly.
| voodooqueen126 chapter 38 . 8/2/2012
You know Luna was clever enough to be sorted into Ravenclaw. I have a friend who says that the genes for schizophrenia are linked to creativity, which is depressing.
| Poetheather1 chapter 38 . 7/29/2012
That's awesome... Lucious thinks Harry is Voldemort... perfect... just perfect. What a poltroon! Most excellent. This whole thing was lovely.
| nancyhua chapter 38 . 3/25/2012
I think part of the quibbler article was true, maybe the idea that Harry is 65 years old since lucius seemed to respond to Harry's allusion to age and then talk to him as though he were voldemort reborn, trying to imperious another Malloy to do his bidding. Given wizards live longer than humans, perhaps voldemort or quirrell are 65 so either could be somehow equivalent to potter. We know Harry feels doom near quirrell so my working theory is that they are the same person and quirrell is trying to create an alternate version of himself, perhaps the nondarklord version, or perhaps the version that was any kind of lord at all instead of an unknown teacher? Maybe Harry and quirrell are the same the way black and pettigrew were allegedly the same in the article. Why did Lucius make that comment about Neville? So many questions!
| braindoll chapter 38 . 2/3/2012
| skywiseskychan chapter 38 . 10/11/2011
This story continues to be entertaining. You have things so mired in plots and divisions, divisiveness and disorderly alliances that I am well and truly flumuxed by them. So instead of trying to figure them out I shall for now simply read and enjoy, accepting Harry’s wise thought after his conversation with Lucius on platform nine and three fourths. I shall not just make things up when I don’t know what is going on.
| AR chapter 38 . 9/22/2011
And I'm back reading the moment I woke up D
I wonder what I did before I found this story...ah well..
Nice chapter..moving on
| Megan McAlistair chapter 38 . 9/4/2011
"Bright the sun, bright the air, bright the students and bright their parents, clean the paved ground of Platform 9.75, the winter Sun hanging low in the sky at 9:45AM in the morning"
that is too perfect, who dies?
"before realizing that not being shocked could be just as revealing"
no Comed Tea?
"this is a weapon of deadly power, not I am feeble and leaning on this"
oh but you wouldn't take away an old man's staff, would you?
"and you cannot but expect me to be concerned!"
what a nice innocent concerned father, d'awwwww
"hence the false Mark I bear; though since I did not truly consent, it does not bind me"
what a tragic story, let us call it the Tragedy of Lucius
"There was a long pause, then"
...in which Lucius fought down the dreaded feeling that Harry thought he was old
later that day Narcissa comforted him, reassuring him that she'd get old long before him and that even now all the college girls secretly wanted him and... you know
"and vanished like a soap bubble."
you mean she is now splattered on the ground?
"I don't know, actually,"
neither do I, nothing was really said, except that Lucius was too old for Harry
| Eri chapter 38 . 8/29/2011
I don't think I understood this chapter (
| ironhair chapter 38 . 8/28/2011
well written lucius, though his declaration that his son is the world to him, was strongly done. Not used to that view of L.M.
Didn't quite get why D.M. reacted like that btw...
| shhIwasn'there chapter 38 . 8/18/2011
I understood absolutely nothing of this chapter. WHAT? what just happened? please explain!
| Isa Knightwalker chapter 38 . 7/17/2011
| MouetteHeartsErik chapter 38 . 4/12/2011
Can hardly breathe from laughter at the image of poor Draco shrieking... but ahh, Lucius. Very Vader of you.
| ev chapter 38 . 3/30/2011
With the possibility of Luna being a true seer, I find the Quibbler content alarming. The Quibbler mentioning Hermione, Draco, and Black is surely not an accident.
Lucius's conversation with Harry also makes more sense now that I've read the later chapters. I hope what's wrong with Harry isn't what I think it is.
| ShineX chapter 38 . 3/26/2011
Awesome, lol :)
| Rationally Procrastinative chapter 38 . 2/25/2011
To: Less Wrong
I recently came across your work here and am struggling with what to say, so perhaps something simple:
I have fiction on my bookshelf that I have deliberately kept for its content for over 20 years that I enjoy less than what I am reading now.
Please keep up the good work.
| ARMH chapter 38 . 2/23/2011
This chapter was actually hilarious. I loved the ending.
| falenas108 chapter 38 . 12/27/2010
Ok, finally got one plot element figured out. When the Quibbler says that Sirius and Pettigrew are the same person, it's actually true. This is based on the fact that in the prison cell, one of the prisoners says "I'm not serious, I'm not serious," and fawkes was making a big deal about the person in this door. Conclusion: I'm not serious is actually I'm not Sirius, Sirius is actually Pettigrew, Pettigrew is innocent, and Luna actually is a Seer.
| SecretlySeverus chapter 38 . 11/15/2010
"Ministry's proposed marriage law..."
I don't know if that's a crack at the "Marriage Law Challenge" that exploded in fanfiction a few years ago or not... but if so it's BRILLIANT.
| Guest chapter 38 . 11/8/2010
This chapter mentions the seer for the Quibbler saying that Harry Potter is betrothed to Bellatrix Black, among others (Hermione Granger, Luna Lovegood, Draco Malfoy).
I'm starting to think that there is a very thin slice of truth to the things the seer says, incredibly distorted by the editor.
| Eli Courtwright chapter 38 . 11/6/2010
'"My son is my heart," said the senior Malfoy, "the last worthwhile thing I have left in this world, and this I say to you in a spirit of friendship: if he were to come to harm, I would give my life over to vengeance. But so long as my son does not come to harm, I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors. And as you have asked nothing more of me, I will ask nothing more of you."'
I often describe MoR to people by saying that every character is awesome. Lucius Malfoy is in great form here, this is SUCH a badass thing to say...
it's ESPECIALLY badass if Lucius believes that Harry Potter is Voldemort as many have suggested, which is what I believe. I mean, seriously, he just (thought that he) THREATENED LORD VOLDEMORT to protect his son... that's just too awesome for words.
Wonderful writing, as ever.
| AspergianStoryteller chapter 38 . 11/3/2010
Oh dear. Poor Draco and Lucius. What did Neville do? Also, hey, wouldn't it be amusing (for us at least, not the poor victims and survivors of war) if Muggles used the word "abracadabra" around magical people and freaked them out? it's morbidly funny that Muggles know the Avada kedavra as a silly word so when they said it, magicals would think the silly word was the Killing Curse and the Muggles would think the silly word based off the Killing Curse was funny. That's a tad bit mixed up. And it's not really funny when you think about the people who died or lost others to the Killing Curse but still.
| Indigo Ziona chapter 38 . 10/28/2010
'Neville spoke first, his voice weary. "You're going to try to fix all the changes she approves of, right?"
"Not all of them," Harry said innocently. "I just want to make sure I'm not corrupting you."'
Lucius is nicely done. And scary as hell, which I think is the point :)
| scuttlesworth chapter 38 . 10/28/2010
Ok, dammit, the husband just went to sleep and the last bit of this chapter made me laugh so loud my cat glared at me. And my face hurts from laughing. And I'm supposed to be filing an insurance claim on dental work so I get money back but instead I'm reading fanfic. You, sir, are pure evil.
| Kutta chapter 38 . 10/11/2010
| Bar00n chapter 38 . 10/11/2010
your story is very interesting, all though quite a bit to mad for my liking;) Usually I'm ahead of the plot but here I don't have a clue what's going on:P
| loserthree chapter 38 . 10/9/2010
By all that is unholy, Lucious believes that _Voldemort_ _already_ _possesses_ HPEV!
Suddenly, the entire conversation becomes clear! Lucious is not addressing an 11 year old boy, he's addressing Voldemort himself!
| LunaSlashSea chapter 38 . 10/8/2010
| malimed chapter 38 . 10/3/2010
a) the ender's game references from the battle scenes made my life. i cheered aloud. which likely made my neighbors upstairs very unhappy . . .
b) for the last few chapters, everytime draco says "father" it reminds me creepily of the Delightful Children from Down the Lane of Kids Next Door fame (cartoon network; look it up on youtube). i can't decid if it's amusing, appropriate, creepy, weird, or a combination of the four.
c) this story is rocking my socks off.
as you were.
| DeMarquis chapter 38 . 9/27/2010
Chapter 38: Nice, I especially liked the use of the setting to create tone (the train station is the place where Harry's reality changes) but am I the only one who thinks Lucius Malfoy came off as more ridiculous than threatening? He's almost depicted like a cartoon villain, hyper-paranoid and not very bright. I wonder if EY is going to use this character for comedy relief?
| ejhawman chapter 38 . 9/11/2010
The Quibbler makes a perfect platform for shout-outs and parodies of common fanfic plot elements, as we see here. The exchange with the vendor is more classic scripting in the old tradition.
The exchange with Lucius Malfoy: like a verbal chess game. It's not about what moves you make, but what moves you could make, and where they lead. Both sides are thinking ahead, driving the layering ever deeper. An unsophisticated listener will be confused, or think one person backed off unnecessarily, signalling weakness. Harry, of course, knows he is in a weak position just now; he must bide his time and build his power.
Fortunately, Augusta Longbottom comes along to provide an equal to Lucius. Now we get a taste of what goes on in Wizengamot sessions.
And naturally, it's just a bit above Draco's head. He is truly getting schooled...
| Morbious20 chapter 38 . 9/5/2010
| Muhoshin chapter 38 . 8/24/2010
Alright, so I'm puzzled, as I'm sure most are, of what Malfoy was talking about.
What we know: Malfoy took several days to figure out what he thought Harry's position was, meaning it's either very devious and a deep game, or it's something far outside his normal thought patters. He further thinks it may be dangerous to his son, and the idea actually frightens him.
So, whose side does Lucius think Harry is on?
By process of elimination, we can attempt to figure out whose interest is being served in Lucius's mind.
-muggledom in general
Those are really the only characters in the story, so this should be simple.
On the face of it, as Draco noted, Quirrelmort is clearly backing Potter as the leader of the wizarding world. That Harry would dispute this would indeed be a squirelly path indeed if you think like Lucius or Quirrelmort.
Harry's own side is obvious, and not worth discussing further. Dumbledore is struck out immediately because the conversation predicates on Lucius not believing he's on Dumbledore's side. We know explicitly that Draco is Lucius's weakness, and he is past willing to admit that to Potter. McGonagall is a pawn, and not worth considering. Snape, while not necessarily a pawn, has shown no indication to Lucius of being aligned with Harry at all. Harry's parents are interesting, but really subsumable in the set of muggles in general, so we can set them aside. Quirrel's side seems highly unlikely, as Quirrel had quite an impressive speech and Harry's speech did nothing to strengthen it. Voldemort's side is a strong possibility, but begs the question why Potter would side with someone he's already cast down and defeated. I can't really cast that out, but it's beyond credulity that anyone would believe the Boy-Who-Lived is secretly on Voldemort's side.
Now, Lucius being who he is, there's probably a strong assumption we can make. The assumption is simple, that Harry's maneuvers with Draco are intended to manipulate Lucius, despite all that is said.
This leaves Hermione, Draco, Lucius, and muggledom.
We can group these into two categories since this is Lucius:
Muggledom/Hermione and Draco/Lucius. As a mudblood, serving Hermione's interest would serve muggledom, and vice versa. Serving Lucius's interest would serve Draco's interest, and vice versa.
Muggledom/Hermione makes sense, because the concept of helping Muggles and mudbloods requires mental acrobats for Malfoy. Moreover, what with the whole science angle, helping mudbloods helps Harry who is trying to harness the fusion of science and magic to rule the world.
Draco/Lucius also makes more sense, because it is that kind of twistiness that makes a Slytherin a Slytherin. It also provides impetus for Lucius to speak to Harry now, as he confirms their relative positions.
For both, it would make sense that it frightens Lucius. Muggle power is the antithesis of everything he strives for, and Harry is playing a game with his son, the most important thing in the world to him. Lucius's comment on weakness may tip it towards muggles/Hermione, because allowing fond feelings for either to influence his decision is precisely the sort of weakness Lucius is trained to detect and exploit.
This also makes sense why he's aligning Draco and Hermione. Either way, they're both clearly Harry's allies, and long-term, it is desirable that they can work together if you're Harry Potter.
All told, I would strongly argue for Lucius believing Harry is putting Draco in a position of strength as his Lieutenant, and using this to manipulate Lucius. The act of making Hermione also a lieutenant working with Draco basically destroys the battle lines of the magical world, and is manipulative of Lucius as well, as he must somehow countenance his son working closely with a mudblood. Of course, this makes my stance a false duality, since this would make Hermione/mudbloods and Draco/Lucius the same side, which is completely ludicrous, unless he can make it work. The important bit is that he's trying to leverage the power of the house of Malfoy to the ends of mudbloods/muggles while retaining the power of Malfoys. This is ambitious in the extreme, but not completely implausible. It would be easier to just try to control the purebloods through Draco, but if he succeeds, it forever puts purebloods as subservient to him. And that's why Lucius is frightened. Win or lose, nothing will be the same.
| Heidinanookie chapter 38 . 8/24/2010
- "Of course..." said Lucius slowly. "I do feel the fool now. This whole time you were just pretending to have no idea what we were talking about." -
uhm, hi! *raise hand* Me! I have NO idea what you're talking about.
oh, okay. It's very, very comforting to know that Harry has no idea what they were talking about, either. I bet you expect some elaborate guess now what they might have been talking about but I can't provide one. Sorry. I don't even remember what Quirrel's speach was about, except that it was outrageous.
| Deritine chapter 38 . 8/23/2010
Well I'm glad I'm not the only one confused about what Harry and Lucius were talking about... though it is probably bad that the other person is Harry lol.
| ilikebluepineapples chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
If it turns out that Lucius did think Harry was Voldemort, I TOTALLY CALLED IT FIRST. :P
Because I can't think why the phrase "He is my friend, and I do not betray my friends" would cause Lucius to react with "sheer shock" unless he recognized the phrase- if it were something Voldemort used to say. Unless this is just LessWrong being melodramatic again? Because he does that.
Except for this is probably wishful thinking because Voldemort isn't the same age as Draco and so the "dealing with the part of House Malfoy that's my own age" line wouldn't make sense for him.
| linkhyrule5 chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
Lucius thinks Harry is Voldemort, doesn't he. (Confirm? :p)
Well yippee. That explain his surprise, though I still have no clue what Lucius thought he was really talking about.
| ilikebluepineapples chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
...Does Lucius think Harry is the ~reincarnation of Voldemort?
| w chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
Excellent. Back to the original level after the battles, which were somewhat unnecessary I think.
Note 1: The execution of conversation with Dumbledore was superb, as it is still plausible Dumbledore actually does have reasons to think the way he does about death, just Harry doesn't get to ask the right questions.
Note 2: It's implausible Harry'd tell Draco he didn't know what they were talking about with Lucius. And if this was a part of a higher-level plan, it should have been stated explicitly.
Note 3: Also, Harry _should_ stop being so trustworthy to Quirrell. Why tell him everything? Even when he's his mentor, it still feels a bit too naive for this Harry.
But, really, these 3 new chapters are excellent. Please keep them coming. An intelligent, good fabularized reading is such a rare find. Maybe you could put other suggestions in your profile?
| badkidoh chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
another great chapter.
| KGB chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
I couldn't continue reading for a while after "So you know". It does press the point home that Harry got all his information from books, but even he should realise not to depend on cliches.
The rest the conversation wasn't really all that enlightening, in addition, I can't figure out if Lucius is playing with Harry or not. He's the one that got Draco tutored and undoubtedly had the same schooling in his youth.
So for example the shock Lucius displayed could be because Harry seemed to imply that Harry was friends with Voldemeort and that he denounced Lucius for his betrayal. However it could also be twenty other things.
I'm looking forward to future updates to see if I can divine the true conversation taking place. :p
| Greytune chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
Oh bloody 'ell.
Those exact words were my first thought when I saw you had updated. With three chapters. I'm still kind of in shock.
I think this is how a junkie may feel when he gets his first fix after a month of withdrawal.
| Arkh Cthuul chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
Ah, back with a Vengeance. Another extremely fun read, this one, and you even got some serious implications worked into it. Kudos.
Now onward to the next 2 Chapters, damn, that new way you update is eating even more time of mine than the old one ;)
| gwern chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
"Harry leaned back wearily in the small folding chair that sat at the bottom of his trunk's cavern. "You know, Draco, just as the fundamental question of rationality is 'What do I think I know and how do I think I know it?', there's also a cardinal sin, a way of thinking that's the opposite of that. Like the ancient Greek philosophers. They had no clue what was going on, so they'd go around saying things like 'All is water' or 'All is fire', and they never asked themselves, 'Wait a minute, even if everything is water, how could I possibly know that?' They didn't ask themselves if they had evidence which discriminated that possibility from all the other possibilities you could imagine, evidence they'd be very unlikely to encounter if the theory wasn't true -""
Goddamnit Eliezer! I am quite sick of you and the LWers in general libeling philosophers and the Presocratics in particular. I do what I can, but apparently the lesson still hasn't sunk in. They were *not* stupid people, they were the smartest around, and a little application of the principle of charity would not be remiss.
You know what one of the very first responses to Thales's 'all is water' theory was? If everything is really water, why hasn't it all returned to water? Also, how could water ever become its deadly enemy, fire? If that isn't looking for disconfirmatory evidence, nothing is.
(Also in general: I'd rather multiple small updates every few days than 3 or 4 chapters dumped every couple of weeks.)
| Sarshi chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
Yeah. I have no idea what that conversation was about, either. *squints*
I guess I could squint harder, but I'm caught up in this little piece of irony: "And now do you know what I think? I think she must be mad after all. When ordinary people try to make stuff up, it doesn't come out like this. Something's got to go really wrong with the inside of your head before this is what comes out when you start making stuff up!" So... there's something wrong inside the author's head then? :P
| Loonynamelass chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
It amused me that Harry would fix the approved ones...
And the end made me giggle.
| everetza chapter 38 . 8/22/2010
The last couple paragraphs made this chapter for me. "I don't know actually, so it's very important that I not just make stuff up - " This had me laughing possibly more than any other time in the whole fic. I could just imagine this scene and it had me cracking up so hard! Great job! The rest of the chapter, round average, but this bit was gold!
| kkat5 chapter 38 . 8/21/2010
"I don't know, actually," said Harry, "so it's very important that I not just make stuff up -"
Harry had never heard Draco shriek in horror in quite that high a pitch before.
LOL! I love that Harry has no idea what went down, and that Lucius is freaked out.
| e chapter 38 . 8/21/2010
I can has moar story! Yays!