On June 29, 2021 Donald Rumslfeld, to the immense benefit of America, Humanity and Mother Earth, passed on to the Known Unknown we call death. Before that he did a bunch of politics, most notably as Secretary of Defense during the first Bush administration. During which time, on February 12 , 2002 he said, in response to increased pressure and pushback and outrage regarding all the many and substantiated reports coming back from Iraq that no Weapons Of Mass Destruction—the only other enjoyable byproduct of the war in Iraq that I’m aware (#39)—had been found because they didn’t exist and he but he was still trying to stall and lie about their fictional-ness.
“’Reports that say that something hasn’t happened are always interesting to me, because as we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns – the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”
In 2002 I was thirty-two years old and while I considered Donald Rumsfeld to be a deplorable monster, I was very very very very stoked on this new phrase-idea he had just introduced to me even though, at the time, I thought he was just making shit up and having fun with the english language in an effort obfuscate.
Turns out Philosophers and Navy Seals have known about Known Knowns, Known Unknowns and Unknown Unknowns for hundreds and hundreds of years because it’s a solid framework and/or way of thinking for stuff like Risk Assessment, Analytical Sciences and Mythical State of Philosophies including but not limited to Line Planning and Product Development.
Speaking of which, here are some products we’re currently working on regarding which we’d love your feedback. Please let us know what you think. Seriously, let’s get this Product Development conversation started.
- A denim hoodie because denim is durable and fashionable and everything should have a hood.
- A flap hat.
- Aftermarket pockets.
2 thoughts on “Thanks Donald, I’m still super glad you’re dead.”
Really dig these product development ideas and really need an “unknown, unknowns” tee, LS tee or maybe a hoodie. Also, thanks for the reminder of the origin story crediting DR with re-introducing the phrase into pop-culture. I was 39 at the time and remember having a nearly identical reaction to the one you describe. Brilliant.
Thanks for the note! We need to put one of these designs into production—you have an opinion regarding the art? And yeah, I have come to really and truly love that expression and the concept behind it so much.