Thursday, May 18, 2006

Now I Understand

If that drunk old high school guidance counselor of mind had done his job, he would have made clear that the reason why you go on to get things like engineering degrees (or law degrees) is because once you do, you are free:

1. Free from the burden of truth
2. Free from the burden of believing anything you don't want to believe
3. Free to be a ignorant time wasting moron.

A recent experience: two out of three structural engineers surveyed said: Rammed Earth Walls cannot be load-bearing
What kind of crap is that?
How is it that a licensed structural engineers in the year of our lord 2006, with computers, fancy wristwatches, business cards, plastic office furniture and the rest of the insipid capitalist accesories, be allowed to continue operations after they say out loud to paying clients "Rammed earth cannot support a roof."


Here. Read this book. Cancel the golf game, put down the OxyContin, hold off on the cocktails till 11am--what ever it takes. Read the book and let's once and for all put to rest the preposterous notion that rammed earth can't hold up a roof.


Albion Rover said...

I am a chartered structural engineer (UK equivalent of licensed engineer) here is my view:

1. Rammed earth is both loadbearing and durable. I live in work in Scotland where "Clay houses" or rammed earth as it is now called, was an alternative to stone building in certain areas in the 18th and 19th C. The three areas noted for clay building were Banff-Buchan (clay and bool construction), Luthermuir-Brechin and Errol in the carse of Gowrie. Clay houses were viewed as high quality (often more extensive) alternative to stone and were popular in the above areas due to abundant availability of suitable materials and limited stone supply. Their loadbearing properties are best illustrated by one clay wall encountered in Brechin, the lower storey of a three storey house - supporting two floors, a roof and two storeys of stonework.

2. It takes more than a degree and a Scottish accent to make an engineer, although one of these helps. What makes the difference is the desire to investigate, understand and create new ideas. These qualities are difficult (or impossible) to teach in University. The best engineers have them. So don't expect all engineers will "get it". Neither should you convict all of us of ignorance.

3. Moron is a word invented by the US eugenics movement to convince large proportions of the US (and world) population that they are sub-human. A flawed concept from a non-science. I suggest you find an alternative word

Rammed Earth said...

Albion, thank you for your well considered comments.

Language is a virus that is always mutating,so I'm inclined to think the common usage of "moron" since the 1800s has broadened the meaning somewhat.

I don't particularily care for the practices of the Johnson&Johnson company, but I still use the word kleenex rather than facial tissue because it gets the point across.

I'm not entirely unconvinced that large proportions of the white, educated, accredited, professional world aren't sub-human.

How long can a culture behave inhumanely towards all life until it is rendered sub-human? I think we're on the verge of finding out.

I suffer from Drapetomania, obviously.

Now howsabout you sending me some photos of these Clay houses?