Giants (in any sense of the word) are not as strong and powerful as they seem

by 1389 on October 1, 2013

in 1389 (blog admin), Bible, Israel, medical

Malcolm Gladwell: The unheard story of David and Goliath

Published on Sep 30, 2013 by TED

It’s a classic underdog tale: David, a young shepherd armed only with a sling, beats Goliath, the mighty warrior. The story has transcended its biblical origins to become a common shorthand for unlikely victory. But, asks Malcolm Gladwell, is that really what the David and Goliath story is about?

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1 Zenster October 3, 2013 at 9:19 am

This is painful. While Gladwell obviously has a tale to tell, clearly he hasn’t spent many hours out at the range. Check in at video time point 08:06, where this narrator talks about how a barium sulphate stone slung by David had “the stopping power of a 45 millimeter handgun”.

Sadly, a “45 millimeter handgun” would have a barrel diameter of almost two inches and a single round from such a weapon could have removed Goliath’s head entirely without recourse by David to any post-impact swordplay. A more commonly available—at least nowadays—.45 caliber handgun is most likely what Gladwell is referring to as the recoil from a hand-held 1.77″ diameter firearm would knock backward any shooter into last week.

To Gladwell’s credit he does identify an almost lost concept—the single combat warrior—something tragically missing in today’s world of tatted up, steroid laced, gangsta thug sports celebrities. The supersonic test pilots and lunar landing astronauts (as recorded in Wolfe’s “The Right Stuff”), were among some of the last individuals who fulfilled such a role for modern civilization.

However, Gladwell goes astray one last time at the end of his story when he discusses probable outcomes. As American newspaperman and author, Damon Runyon, was wont to note:

The race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, but that’s the way to bet.

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