Category Philosophy

Black Widow, the Girl Scouts and the Fonts of Corruption

There were several places in the new Black Widow movie where the director intended to shock us. There’s a missile strike out of nowhere and a main heroic character attempting to murder a child. However, the moment that shocked me the most is the scene where Black Widow mocks a male character for failing to […]

Why It’s So Hard to Combine Goodness and Honesty

I was reading Bertrand Russell’s “History of Western Philosophy” and got to his analysis of Socrates. Russell has a number of amusing insights into the man, but my favorite is this idea that Socrates’ primary value was as perhaps the first systematic philosopher of bullshit-detection. The Socratic Method, though of limited use in formal, mathematical […]

Freeberation, the Logically Tortured History of “Freedom” and “Liberation”

Some words are flexible. Love, for example, might encompass your feelings for ice cream, the relationship you have with a grandparent and the things you do at night with your spouse. Some words are even more flexible, encompassing not just diverse concepts but diametrically opposed concepts. For example, you might organize a protest for freedom […]

Two Agricultural Analogies and the Nature of Optimism

Throughout history, you will find countless rulers, philosophers, historians, artists and critics who claim humans are naturally wicked. In my opinion, Saint Augustine of Hippo is the most influential of their number. Likewise, you will find many who argue people are naturally good. The most enduring and influential of these, by my estimation, is the […]

Ozio

I’m reading Machiavelli for a project and came across a concept that I think deserves more attention – ozio. Ozio is the term Machiavelli uses to describe idleness, luxury, and physical comfort. So far so common. However, the interesting thing is that Machiavelli doesn’t characterize ozio as leading to corruption, he characterizes it as being corruption. Put another way, […]

Nietzsche’s Fascinating Little Quote

“If you regard as deserving of annihilation, any suffering and pain generally as evil, as detestable, and as blots on existence, well, you have then, besides your religion of compassion, yet another religion in your heart (and this perhaps the mother of the former) – the religion of smug ease. Ah, how little you know […]

Just a Tool Kit?

Before my first semester of high school an as-yet unknown English teacher sent me a message commanding that I should read four books during vacation and prepare detailed reports on each, due on the first day of class. At the time, I thought this was a pretty intense increase of difficulty compared to middle school. […]

Why NFAC May Be Good

I like this picture. I consider the existence of this armed militia a cause for hope not because I hate white people and certainly not because I want to express white guilt, but because I think it represents a real, sustainable basis for respect. I think it represents a genuine respect because, in my experience, […]

The Homely Gangsters, Episode 11

Immigrants are good for the economy, slightly good for unemployment rates, they commit way fewer crimes and their kids are better students and more upwardly mobile than similar SES natives. And this is all a problem. You see, most people would rather have social status than a slightly more efficient economy or a safer neighborhood […]

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 […]