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Showing posts from July, 2019

So, is Trump a racist?

If anything distinguishes a full-time philosopher from an ordinary civilian, it's the degree of imagination and skepticism a philosopher applies to putative truth-claims.

Let's say, for instance, I test the strongest, most thoughtful representative of the Trump-bashing Democrat/left/"progressive" opposition with the following "offer" of exchange:
I concede that Trump is a racist, and you concede that the Trump-bashing Democrat/left/"progressive" opposition is intellectually bankrupt.
Fair exchange?
I'm not sure, because I'd be "exchanging" a certainty with overwhelming and incontrovertible evidence in its support for a mere probability or likelihood with a contentious body of evidence.
What's more, I don't expect to get such a concession of intellectual bankruptcy from even the "best," most responsive-to-evidence advocate of the Democrat/left/"progressive" segment of the electorate.  If they haven't fig…

#BlackLivesMatter, #EqualPay and the Anthem

The athletes disrespecting the flag and country during the National Anthem should do better than Trump.  Instead of sowing further division and sending all kinds of the wrong message (and Kaepernick and by extension Nike definitely crossed over the line with the Betsy Ross flag thing without even so much as a word of dialogue with flag- and country-lovers - roughly as shameful and disgraceful as Google's rebuttal-by-firing of James Damore[*]), they should use their creative powers to both respect the flag and send their message.

[*] - This particularly ugly episode in "woke social justice" history has me believing with at least 98% confidence that Rectenwald has these anti-dialogue cultists dead to rights.  I cannot abide these aspiring mini-Maos; disgusting creatures.  I won't even touch the trans issue with a ten foot pole given the rampant toxicity/radioactivity there I've seen just on surface inspection.  If an entity like Google fucks up as badly as it did wi…

Make Presidents Great Again

or: What Would Marcus Aurelius Tweet?

The first four presidents of the United States - Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison - were philosophical people.  They loved, cherished, and pursued (and may even have attained to some extent) wisdom.  (The American Philosophical Society [APS] of which they were members was co-founded by Ben Franklin; let's call the aforementioned the Big Five of the American Founding.)  It's not a stretch to say that had America's founding generation not been of the intellectual and moral caliber that they were - had they not been the sort of people who would found or become members of a philosophical society - America probably wouldn't be the great nation it has been.

Unfortunately, their legacy has been squandered, to the point that we have the shitshow of today.  Having an uncouth, unread man as president - elected mainly on the promise of taking on the (intellectually bankrupt and therefore) corrupt swamp that is D.C. - is but a symptom of th…

Answer to Prof. Wolff on inequality

The loathsomeleftistloserLeiterlinks to (Marxist/museum piece) Robert Paul Wolff critiquing what he takes to be standard lines of justification for income/wealth inequality used by defenders of capitalism.  I've addressed the essential point in this blog fairly recently using the example of Amazon/Bezos, but I elaborate on my argument further below.  First, Wolff:
In order to focus our attention and make the argument concrete, let me take as an example the Columbia University Sociology Department in which I shall again be teaching this fall.  There are upwards of forty members of the department, including many distinguished scholars, and a support staff of four.  Since Columbia, unlike UMass, is a private university, it is of course impossible to find out easily how much each of these folks makes [whereas at UMass this is public knowledge], but I think we can assume that there is a considerable pay gap between the senior professors and the departmental secretaries – maybe three hun…

How much of an imbecile is AOC?

The hits just keep on coming with "progressive" Democrat imbeciles.  We have Nancy Peloser using the "Keep America White Again" phrase again, this time in reaction to Trump's wanting to put a citizenship question on the census.  We have Rep. Ilhan Omar calling Tucker Carlson a "racist fool" for saying something not race-related.  (The linked piece by Conor Friedersdorf is all quite fine and good fair comment, but note his refraining from calling Tucker's anti-Omar rant racist.)  We have Bozo O'Rourke saying America was "founded on white supremacy."  (Only on white supremacy?  Predominantly?  Primarily?)  (One seemingly kneejerk rightist rebuttal to this that I heard is that America was founded on Christianity.  How odd; so, like, it took Christianity 1700+ years to found a modern liberal republic and it merely just so happens that this founding took place less than a century after Locke.  Am I the crazy one here in thinking that it h…

A middle finger to "woke" statists

For those who propose that the state "do something" at someone's expense.

Is AOC a head case?

I've already written about how AOC (a.k.a.: Another Obnoxious Commie) is a recklesslyignorant and toxicmoral-blowhard.  But based on the latest info I've seen, I am led to ask: is she also a head case?

Witnesses say that AOC screamed at border patrol agents on her visit to a detention center (where she implausibly claimed that agents told detainees to drink from the toilet - a claim that should be looked into as a litmus test of AOC's credibility on basic facts, much less her warped worldview).  But this particular item caught my attention: A second official said that while she was around agents, Ocasio-Cortez commented at another point about an unofficial Border Patrol Facebook page that was exposed earlier Monday for offensive content about those in custody and lawmakers, including the congresswoman.
“Something under her breath, ‘Oh, all these guys in here are gonna f--k me.’ ..." Now, any epistemically competent thinker knows to discount eyewitness testimony without in…

Independence Day 2019

This day millions of commonsense Americans declare their independence from the would-be tyranny of "politically correct," "woke," sick-puppy leftists who would destroy America, western civilization, capitalism and freedom as we know it - and who thereby helped get our current president elected.  (Can they get any more fucking ridiculous?  They're doubling down on what helped get him elected?  Are they just not very bright?)  And if the following image triggers you - you might have gone mad; seek help! - just remember that the current US flag retains 13 stripes.  (And racist idiots trying to appropriate the U.S. flag need philosophyboot camp as much as the "woke" yet philosophically ignorant leftist idiots do, along with everyone else.)

Newly released letters of Ayn Rand

One of my most favorite books all-time is Letters of Ayn Rand, a peak into this towering genius in her non-public, letter-writing capacity.  Which is why I am delighted to see that the Estate of Ayn Rand has released more letters for one's consumption/admiration.
Some additional Ayn Rand & Objectivism resources:
The Ayn Rand Lexicon (Objectivism unfiltered) Ayn Rand Institute Campus: Lecture Courses (the Peikoff ones are not to be missed) The Ayn Rand Society (an organization of philosophy professors) Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy entry (Rand as discussed by competent interpreters, with lots of bibliographic leads) Ayn Rand & Philosophy: Background timeline/players

Reminder: Leading '20 Dems smeared Kavanaugh

In the polling (not as much the betting markets) the leading 2020 Democratic candidates are: Biden, Harris, Warren and Sanders.

All four of them got in on the act of recklessly smearing Brett Kavanaugh, when the chips were down, when a man's career and reputation were on the line.  It reveals not just an intellectual bankruptcy in the Democrat Party, but also a moral bankruptcy.

I've commented in detail on this before. (the context)  A brief recap:

(1) Biden is quoted by AP (9/28/18) as saying that Dr. Ford, Kavanaugh's accuser, gave credible testimony (9/27/18) and that both he and the country believed her.

(2) Harrisappeared on CNN on 9/18/18, two days after Ford's accusation became public, to say she believed Dr. Ford.  This career prosecutor said this before hearing from both sides.  This is in addition to her almost surreal interrogation of Kavanaugh in the main portion of the confirmation hearings (where it turns out Harris wasn't holding any cards).

(3) Warren on…