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 […]
What a dreadful dismal year that was. If you started the year with any faith in humanity, you surely didn’t end it that way. The dominant emotion of the year was disbelief and a sense of futility. You felt you were living through a bad dream. Perhaps strangely, I had a productive year philosophically: I […]
It could be argued that philosophy has always had suicidal tendencies. In the age of logical positivism philosophy tried to kill itself. Philosophy is a nuisance, a headache, a source of misery. I don’t think philosophy will ever die of natural causes (though science might). It is too pressing. But I can see that its […]
The recent revelations about the effects of fake news disseminated on the internet suggests that credulity is the main enemy of democracy today. What we need is anti-credulity training: that is, lessons in epistemology. I wish I could say that philosophers are immune to fake news–if it fits their ideological preconceptions.
Every day I wake up and think how bizarre it is that I am not teaching at a university. I feel like Alice–I’ve entered an alternative reality that makes no sense.
I reviewed Peter Godfrey-Smith’s Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness in the Wall Street Journal last Saturday. Nice book, great subject, fascinating animal.
I am going to make a prediction–a possibility not a certainty. The sybaritic businessman will quickly find that he is (a) not up to the job of president and (b) he doesn’t like the job. He doesn’t have the knowledge or the patience or the skills to do it adequately, and he chafes at the […]
Democracy and Desire The essence of democracy is collective decision. Each citizen is accorded equal power to determine the outcome of elections and hence to influence public policy. The simplest version of the democratic principle is majority rule: what the majority wants determines the decisions of the state. There have been criticisms of […]
Why do people pronounce “ing” as “in” in such words as “singing”? This is often called “g”-dropping, though there was never any “g” sound there to start with. One answer is that it is a form of laziness or sloppiness, as if it takes more effort to say “ing” than “in”. But there is a […]
I recommend watching George Stephanopoulos’ interview with Trump and family, aired today on Good Morning America, but likely to be repeated on This Week on Sunday. He really brings out the bluster, paranoia, and delusions of the man.