How much more of this are xkcd readers going to have put up with this? Are math and physics people really so simpleminded that they seek the affirmation of a stick figure, gently caressing their minds while saying "there there, it's ok, philosopher will never be as clever as you, don't worry. don't worry." ? I doubt it. And of course, anyone else read this comic would probably just be offended. Quite frankly, as far as I can tell, the only people who should like this comic - besides physicists with low self esteem - are philosophers who can laugh at themselves.
It's the same irritating elitism that we saw here and here and I worry that Randall loves it so much it's not going to stop.
More people than usual were irritated enough to e-mail me about it, and I had two guest posts in my inbox and some offers for more. I'll quote a little, just to give a flavor of what is pissing people off:
I am sick and tired of this bullshit that Randall thinks he can attack any degree that isn't in the oh-so-wonderful sciences. What has clearly happened here is that Randall has spoken to someone who has half a brain in their head, and this person has taken a critical eye to a generally accepted, most likely true, scientific theory.
A. K. writes:
Xkcd fanboys will read this comic, and their shrieking snorts of hysteria will punctuate dorm-rooms worldwide. As they wipe tears from glee from their puffy eyes, they’ll rejoice at how Randall has once again put those Pesky Philosophy majors In Their Place.
Some will even print out the comic, smudging the ink with their cheeto-greasy fingers in a rush to staple the comic to the noticeboard of their communal kitchen. They’ll take a step back, and for a second, admire their passive-aggressiveness as a dog admires itself as it pisses against a tree.
But hey, whatever makes you feel better. Just remember: You aren't a physicist either, Randall, you sell t shirts with pictures of stick figures for a living. And even I - a crazy blogger with a first-grade education - can look down on that.
update: clearly, when I wrote a post accusing Randall of being elitist, I had no idea that the next comic would end with him saying "I am a god."