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I, Andis Kaulins of Germany & the USA, am not knowingly related to Andis Kaulins domiciled in China or Andis Kaulins domiciled in the Baltic, although I do have relatives in Latvia. Our oldest family birth records write Kaulins as "Kaulin". Collins in English may be a common distantly related differently spelled surname.
The blood line of the British monarchy traces back to the broader family of the early Anglo-Saxon Wessex king Ceawlin viz. Ceaulin. Ceaulin was the 2nd Bretwalda ("ruler of Britain").
The Indo-European word root *wal- and its variant forms mean "to rule": e.g. my mother's name was Valda. Wikipedia:
"When the line of Ceol finally became extinct, first Caedwalla of Wessex and then Ine of Wessex became king; both great-grandsons of Cuthwine. Egbert of Wessex, ancestor of the later Kings of England, descends from Ine's brother and hence also from Cuthwine [the son of Ceawlin, grandson of Cynric, son of Cerdic, the first of the Saxons to come across the sea from Germany]." Given modern genetics and new knowledge about DNA, mtDNA and haplotypes, we all know today, of course, that if you go back far enough in time, everyone is related to everyone else, so that unexpected distant relations should surprise no one.

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Andis Kaulins

Andis Kaulins
Fore!

Law Pundit  and Golf
Golf Champion
at 61 3/4


My Most Recent Book
Ancient Signs
The Alphabet
& The Origins of Writing


Ancient Signs

is a print & ebook,
which shows that
modern alphabets are products of ancient alphabets
that themselves are derived
from even more ancient
syllabic scripts
as found in
Sumer, Egypt, Persia (Elam), Anatolia, Crete, and Cyprus.

Stars
Stones
and Scholars:
The Decipherment
of the Megaliths

(2003 softcover)
(2006 hardcover)

stars stones scholars



How do you know?

What are your sources?


Personal Experience

Secondary Experience


Personal Experience

How do you know that something is so? When we are children, our parents tell us that we will burn our fingers if we touch something hot, but almost everyone first has to burn a finger on something hot to truly "know" what this really means. We call this "learning by personal experience". We know what "hot" means and we know that we can burn our fingers on something hot because we have experienced that feeling on our own person. Much of our knowledge is "experience" and we share such knowledge with our fellow humans.

Personal Experience can also be Subjective

Personal experience can also be subjective. Scientific studies show that two spectators sitting side by side in a stadium at a sports event - but rooting for opposing teams - will favor their own team by two-thirds on disputed calls made by the referees. But what did they really see or know? Was the ball out or in? Our so-called knowledge of what is true (based on what we "see") depends upon our allegiance and loyalty to a given team - it is not objective, but colored by our personal subjective prejudices. "Close calls" therefore do not go the way of truth but the way of allegiance. This is not just so in sports, but in many facets of life, including science. In assessing our personal experience, we side with "our" team, even though - in fact - we may be wrong in our conclusions. Mothers of accused criminals, for example, almost always state that "my son is not guilty", even though their statement is generally not true.


Secondary Experience

Much of what we know is not based on our own personal experience but on secondary or vicarious experience. We know through the experience of persons other than ourselves. For example, most of what we know about current world events is secondary experience. We have not experienced most current events in the world personally, but have read about such events in the newspaper or on the internet, or have seen or heard them on television or radio, as reported to us by others. This knowledge may or may not be true.

Secondary Experience is Less Reliable

Secondary experience is less reliable than first-hand personal experience. One of the most famous examples of this is a Halloween night radio broadcast in 1938 by actor Orson Welles and the Mercury Theatre presenting a fictional "War of the Worlds" in which Martians invaded the Earth. The theater radio presentation was so well done that many listeners - who tuned in to the program late and who did not hear at the start of the program that it was "just a story" - thought that the Martian invasion was real. This led to a mass panic in the populace, especially among those people who wished to believe in UFOs and extraterrestrials anyway. Non-believers were more sceptical and at least called in to the radio station to get more information. Especially hearsay experience, that is, something we "heard said" from others, can be notoriously unreliable. Just because we were told something is true, does not make it true.



Who
Says?

The Professional Principle


Knowledge and Authority

Institutionalized Knowledge


Knowledge and Authority

When parents tell children not to touch a hot candle or they will burn their fingers - and they still touch the candle and burn their fingers - the authority of the parents then increases. They have made a clear predictive statement which turns out to be true. The next time that they warn their children not to do something for a specific reason, their children will think twice about doing it, because the parents knew what they were saying - at least in the case of the hot candle. Indeed, as such cases multiply in childhood, the authority of the parents rises proportionately. Someone who demonstrates knowledge about one thing has higher credibility on the next thing. We see this for example in our view of Nobel Prize winners, who we view as "knowing" persons after their winning of the prize. A good "track record" makes a person knowledgeable in the eyes of others. Such a person has authority. It is for this reason that 50 percent of all Nobel Prize winners labored under Nobel Prize winners. Apprenticeship to a master shoemaker is seen more likely to make another master shoemaker. Knowledge thus runs the risk of becoming institutionalized and reduced to "who you know" and not "what you know".





Institutionalized Knowledge

Much of knowledge is institutionalized. You have to have a piece of paper saying you know something. To get such a paper, you have to read what other knowers knew before - a process which reaches back quite some time into history and often leads to absolutely outdated knowledge. One of the rules of academia in fact is "publish or perish". What this means in the academic world is that an academic career is not dependent on teaching skills but rather on the ability to publish materials in so-called peer-reviewed (crony tested) journals - the more footnoted citations the better. Academia does not live from new ideas but rather from copious citation to the previous alleged knowledge of others. Indeed, the standard for knowing in academia, as judged by peer-reviewed journals, is quantitative - as opposed to qualitative - reference in published articles. The more an article is "cited" by others, the more important the article is regarded to be, even if it is rubbish. The content is secondary. Search engines are now applying this principle even to the internet. In this manner much nonsense has been made fashionable. Just because something is popular or accepted by the majority or supported by experts does not make it true.






How reliable is citation?

Who decides what is true?


Go to the ORIGINAL Sources

There are no "courts of truth"


As a student at Stanford Law School, my mentor, the late Professor John Kaplan wrote a book on drug abuse laws and asked me to research the major cited sources in this political and legal conflict. He predicted that few of these citations, when traced back to the ORIGINAL SOURCE, would say what people claimed it said. This turned out to be just as Kaplan, one of the nation's experts on evidence, predicted. Over time, people had bent and twisted the original sources to suit THEIR purposes. It was a bit like the party game in which a sentence is whispered into the ear of one listener, who whispers it further to the ear of the next listener, etc. After many such listeners, the last person repeats the original sentence - and this often is a completely garbled version of the original sentence. So, we should not be surprised to find the same phenomenon for citations over time. Remember, one usually cites to other sources not for the TRUTH of what others write, but because these sources support THEIR position. At the same time, opposing sources may not be cited. Hence, citation of sources is SELECTIVE and SUBJECTIVE.
.


There are very few "absolute" truths agreed upon by everyone. In the days of the communist rule of the Soviet Union, the communist party newspaper was called Pravda, which means "truth" in Russian. But as many a capitalist Russian will tell you today, Pravda in fact also contained a great many lies. But this is no different in the West. When I worked as an associate for a large law firm in New York City, I was involved with several projects which were reported in major daily newspapers across the United States. As an insider I was amazed at the substantial errors and subjectivisms found in the newspaper articles. What could you really believe? Just as in the courts, the process of fact-finding in everyday life was a complex and difficult one. Ultimately, the final arbiter is YOU. Everyone has to analyze the facts and evidence on their own and decide for themselves what is true and what is not true and who they wish to believe and who not. Often, we decide in favor of "authority", but as the famed Judge Learned Hand wrote, "20 Bishops swearing on a Bible that something is true does not make it true, if the evidence shows otherwise." 


What do people really know?

Belief is not Fact


Knowledge and Authority

Institutionalized Knowledge


Almost everyone has an opinion on affairs in the Middle East and yet almost no one knows the first thing about the ACTUAL history of this region - yet, hostile wars and conflagrations abound, all evidence of the mass ignorance of humanity. Modern political events are guided by idiocy, not by knowledge. One of the critical questions is - who were the Jews? In fact, the famous Roman historian Tacitus, writing shortly after Christ in ca. 70 A.D., gives us the oldest known account about the Jews as follows (Brodribb Translation): "Some say that the Jews were fugitives from the island of Crete.... Others assert that ... the overflowing population of Egypt ... discharged itself into the neighboring countries. Many ... say that they were a race of Ethiopian origin ... Others describe them as an Assyrian horde. Others ... assign a very distinguished origin to the Jews, alleging that they were the Solymi, a nation celebrated in the poems of Homer, who called the city which they founded Hierosolyma after their own name."
So what if this latter were actually true?






I find that I belong to a very small minority of people who truly want to know "what really happened in the past". Most people dealing with ancient eras seem to have vested nterests or are digging for buried treasures. They also may be protecting their job or salary. Or they may be following some political agenda. Or they may be working on establishing their academic reputation by dutifully citing their predecessors. Still others simply believe what they want to believe, out of ignorance, laziness, prejudice or malice or by reason of nation of origin. Most people simply adopt the views of their parents and their country and take no time to study original sources or to make intelligent decisions on important historical matters. The result is that we have a world full of billions of people who are historical illiterates and who know next to nothing about what actually occurred in the world before them. They follow false prophets and idols of every description and serve the devils of primitive sects and religions rather than seeking the objective truth about things.
Belief is not fact. It is the absence of fact.










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The owner and webmaster of AndisKaulins.com is Andis Kaulins
B.A. University of Nebraska; J.D. Stanford University Law School
Former Lecturer in Anglo-American Law, FFA, Trier Law School
Alumnus Associate of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, NYC

This page was last updated on February 19, 2013.



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