Reply to Ron Hoeflin on Suggested Changes

Kevin Langdon

In Noesis #155, Ronald K. Hoeflin proposed several changes to established Mega procedures.

(1) The Mega Society has been without an admissions test for more than a year, I believe. I suggest that my Titan Test be utilized as an admissions test as a stopgap until and unless some replacement test is found.

This is totally unworkable. The Titan Test has been compromised for some time. Furthermore, the correct cutoff level is 45 or 46, not 43. See my "On Mega Admissions Standards" in Noesis #140:


We need to change our Mega and Titan cutoff without delay to conform to what is reasonably defensible.

Therefore, I offer the following proposal to be voted on by the Mega membership (but not immediately; this question will be considered in the Journal of Right Tail Psychometrics): "The Mega Society cutoff score on the Mega and Titan tests (taken before 1995) is raised to 45."

(2) The Society's constitution states in Article 1, Section 3 that "The name of the Mega Society's official journal is Noesis." I propose that the journal's name be changed to A Gem. Since this name is "Mega" spelled in reverse, and it simultaneously has an appropriate meaning, it would be a name better suited to the Mega Society than Noesis, which is a somewhat obscure word from phenomenology that has no particular bearing on the nature of this society, which is not a society devoted to phenomenology. For example, "noesis" appears in the Merriam-Webster unabridged dictionary but not in the Merriam-Webster collegiate dictionary--a testimony to the word's obscurity. In The Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy under "noesis" it says simply "See Husserl," and under "Husserl" the relevant definition reads (p. 348): "The noema is the object as described phenomenologically, the noesis is the corresponding mental activity, also as described by phenomenology."

This is also an inadvisable change, in my opinion. In fact, the meaning that Dr. Hoeflin mentions at the end of his remarks is very appropriate for our journal. And Chris Cole made the very good point that changing the name of our journal could weaken our position with regard to our dispute with Chris Langan. Furthermore, I think that name changes are confusing.

(3) Article IV, Section 3 of the Society's constitution states that "If a vacancy should occur during the year [in any of the elective offices], a call for candidates shall be published in the next issue of Noesis.... The officers, by majority vote, may appoint a temporary officer to serve until the results of balloting are known." To this I would add: "The office of Editor shall be deemed to be vacant if, for any reason, the person who holds that office fails to produce an issue of the Society's journal for any period exceeding three (3) calendar months, unless the delay is due to the Publisher's failure to send the Editor sufficient funds for an issue for that period of time, in which case the office of Publisher rather than Editor shall be deemed vacant.

 Point three is a draconian remedy for a problem better solved by adding, rather than removing, Editors and by enlarging our pool of volunteer manpower through incorporation of the Pi Society into Mega.