Truism


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Jackie Avery

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Apparently as a result of the sinking of the Titanic a 'tru-ism' from Captain Smith has been recognised. I would like to know what that tru-ism is. Can someone give me advice on this. I am considering using this comment with regard to 'Risk' issues.
 

Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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A truism (not usually hyphenated) - noun - is a self-evident truth, Jackie. What's the context in which the word was used?
 
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Jackie Avery

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It was something along the lines that Captain Smith apparently had said the Titanic was 'unsinkable'. I want to use the statement within the context of assessing 'Risks' & not just take it for granted that nothing could 'possibly happen'.
 

Dave Gittins

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Mar 16, 2000
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There are some rather silly statements attributed to Captain Smith, mostly after the disaster. One that is more authentic is this one.

"I cannot imagine any condition which would cause a ship to founder. I cannot conceive of any vital disaster happening to this vessel. Modern shipbuilding has gone beyond that."

Captain Smith was referring to Adriatic and it's in the US press. Smith was plainly thinking of the usual hazards of storms, or collisions with other ships.
 
Jun 11, 2000
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What might have seemed a "truism" in 1912 may not be one in 2006, or even post-April 1912. Perhaps a word best avoided in research, no matter what its context, unless clearly put into a time reference.

Poor EJ - bitten by the press, after the event, by an innocent observation made from his own experiences. Lesson? Say nothing.
 
Oct 28, 2000
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Given that steel does not get stronger as ships grow larger...and that Adriatic was a slower vessel than Titanic...it is probable that Captain Smith's comments about modern shipbuilding were more true when they were said than when Titanic left the Harland & Wolff yard.

It is unfair to Smith to think of his comments as looking forward forever. He was speaking of what existed then compared to what existed prior to Adriatic. Times change. Ships change. The past does not always predict the future.

-- David G. Brown
 
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