Category Opinion

The Homely Gangsters Episode 9

This isn’t the first time in history we’ve had celebrity scientists. It’s not the first time these celebrities have used their expertise to tell us how we should live, what values we should have, and how we ought to interpret the world. That history is surprisingly dark.  Are we heading down the same dark path […]

The Homely Gangsters Episode 7

Are men just women with dangly bits? Why is there more pressure on women to make families and more pressure on men to succeed in their careers? Can we blame it all on the white man? Is it the work of the Illuminati? Would the world explode if we talked about gender politics without foaming […]

The Homely Gangsters Episode 6

Do you spend all day watching the news, terrified of gun violence and involuntarily urinating at the thought of armed neighbors? Is your front room filled with assault rifles, NRA posters and shrines to John Rambo? Check out the latest episode for a balanced examination of exactly what the whole gun thing is about. https://www.buzzsprout.com/255212/1093037-guns

The Homely Gangsters Episode 5; Immigrants

https://www.buzzsprout.com/255212/949615-immigrants-are-coming.mp3?download=true The brave Homely Gangsters dive into the immigration debate and find that, basically, it’s b.s. on both sides. What, really, are the pro-immigrant and anti-immigrant people after? Why do the rich and professional classes, in every society from Han Dynasty China to Brexit England, lean pro-immigrant? Why do the poor and laboring classes, in […]

The Homely Gangsters Episode 4; The Paris Agreements

https://www.buzzsprout.com/255212/949605-the-paris-agreement.mp3?download=true As the greenest podcast in the history of podcasting, the Earth-Mothers Mia and Jen team up with primitive survivalists Ben and Jamal to talk global warming, Trump vs. the UN and the largely ignored conflict between fighting climate change and helping poor people in industrializing countries. 

Science Popularizers in the 19th Century

We are, as I’m sure you’re aware, in the middle of a boom for scientific prestige. Never before have we been so impressed with the scientist as a heroic figure and only once before have we been willing to listen seriously when scientists (like Niel De Grasse Tyson, Richard Dawkins and Stephen Hawking) pretend that […]

Threats to Democracy

We tend to think of democracy as an inevitability. Indeed, Violet Brown, the current oldest person alive, was born in 1900, 124 years after the establishment of democracy in the US. Even my host country, South Korea, has been democratic longer than my sister has been alive. However, our current wave of democracy is only […]

The Saturn Five Rocket and Human Suffering

Look upon the Saturn V rocket. It is 110.6 meters tall, taller than the Statue of Liberty. It’s 10 meters in diameter, weighs nearly 3 million kilograms and cost 700 million dollars in today’s money. The first stage of this rocket created more than 3.4 million kilograms of thrust and consumed 2.3 million kilograms of […]

The Aesthetic Case Against Rights

This is an excerpt from my upcoming book “Overcoming Justice.” I’d love any ideas, reactions and thoughts you have regarding this article. I have several reasons for viewing rights with suspicion. I think the epistemology is all messed up and I think that the concept of human rights invalidates huge swaths of history and experience. […]

A Short Meditation on Victim Blaming

Victims deserve pity not blame. It is almost impossible to respect someone you pity. I would rather be blamed. “It is the spirit of our times to honor the victimized. They, the downtrodden, the deliciously injured, the erotically disempowered – how lovely is it to shower our pity down on their bowed shoulders? How fervid […]