What working in the wine trade taught me:
Humility produces an unlimited return and is non zero-sum.
This is why any phrasing which compares or measures humility is so deeply suspicious. As a signal of virtue it gains nothing and only obscures corruption.
On another subject (not really) – try replacing the phrase “conspiracy theory” with “convergence of interests.” What is the effect on meaning?
Much energy comes from the contrast of words “theory” and “interest.”
“Theory” has an axis of value. “It’s just a theory,” exemplifies one end, and the more strictly scientific usage exemplifies the other – Heliocentrism, Evolution, etc.
And yet, the word “interest” might be more interesting even than “theory.”
“Interest” is shrouded with a shallow semantic equivalence to “curiosity.” And it is stained with the vulgarity implied by the phrase “special interest.” Interest in this sense, unlike humility, is a zero-sum set.
An ideological framework which positions democracy as virtue implies that special interest is illegitimate. But even in such systems, it must be stitched into the fabric. I suppose the data demands it.
Is it a conspiracy or a convergence of interests that causes an insured warehouse full of trophy wines to burn down?
I know I said not to measure humility, but is this sentence legit?:
“I’d like to see at least as many conversational resources devoted to the humble disclosure of interests as to the declaration of virtue.”
In passing I’d say that doesn’t sound like it was phrased after drinking a bottle of wine.
Of course none of this has to apply only to the subject of wine and its appreciation.
(care to map the sarcasm, if any, in the above?)