Silver Lining

Since I retired from my job four years ago I have dedicated myself to philosophy. I have never worked so long and hard. This is a consequence of the freedom afforded by retirement: no more teaching, professional obligations, faculty meetings. That’s the thing about retirement: you can get some work done! Partly it’s a matter of time and energy, but more important it’s because of the lack of distraction. You can focus for weeks on what you are working on without having to worry about professional obligations. I have therefore been able to go deeper and range wider than ever before. I would not have been able to do the work I have if I were still holding down a job. I feel this acutely. I feel that before retirement my work stayed at the surface, but now I feel that I have dug deeper; at any rate, I’m happier with my work. Certainly, the quantity is far greater than I could achieve while working as a professor. Retirement has changed me as a philosopher.

Alternative Facts

I have a new definition of truth: correspondence to the alternative facts. Thus “snow is black” corresponds to the alternative fact that snow is black. I also have a new definition of moral rightness: an action is right if and only if it promotes the alternative good (suffering, injustice, etc). Also logical validity: entailment within an alternative logic (such as one in which every proposition follows from its negation). The alternative Cogito: I think, therefore I don’t exist.

Obamacare=The Affordable Care Act

I was just watching Jimmy Kimmel in which people were asked which of the above they preferred. Some people preferred one, others preferred the other. No one knew they were the same. Sense and reference! Who said analytical philosophy isn’t useful?

Inauguration

This will be a bizarre and uncomfortable event. The coverage will be embarrassed and sheepish. The celebration will be muted to the point of mumbling. It will be hollow and awkward. It will lead to national depression rather than national hope. The reality will finally sink in. By next week things will turn fissile. What fun!

Implicit Bias

The recent collapse of this psychological theory is not even a bit surprising. Five minutes thought could have persuaded anyone that this was yet another rickety psychological concoction. But people are gullible and will believe virtually anything if a psychologist tells them it is so. I gave up psychology over forty years ago because of methodological problems (among other reasons). Philosophers, in particular, should not accept uncritically what psychologists claim to have discovered.