Category Archives: philosophy

Old Tom Hobbes

A man of the secular right, I feel. Writing in the TLS David Runciman explains: But between the political parts [of Leviathan] – the first two sections and the final one – come parts three and four, which are concerned … Continue reading

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Old Nick, Dead Right

Isaiah Berlin on Machiavelli: Machiavelli’s cardinal achievement is his uncovering of an insoluble dilemma, the planting of a permanent question mark in the path of posterity. It stems from his de facto recognition that ends equally ultimate, equally sacred, may … Continue reading

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On the fifth day of Christmas . . .

. . . My true love gave to me a book on pop metaphysics. Yes, I read Jim Holt’s Why Does the World Exist? over the weekend.  It’s light stuff: A journalist ─ though a more-than-usually intelligent one ─ talks to … Continue reading

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Living by the Book

Whether that book is the Koran, the Bible, or Das Kapital, engineering societies based on books of principles can lead to ludicrous ‘solutions.’ Rationalism gone amok can seem hilarious, if not tragic. Saudi Arabia is organized around the theories of … Continue reading

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One must sometimes be wrong to ever be right

National Review has a piece up, The Party of Civil Rights. In it Kevin D. Williamson makes the case that everything you thought you knew about the relationship of the Democrats and Republicans to Civil Rights is wrong. There is … Continue reading

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Secular Humanism, Trashed

My thanks to Polichinello for highlighting this rather good Salon article by Michael Lind on secular humanism. I thought it made a useful supplement to an earlier Corner contribution by Derb/Bradlaugh, and posted accordingly: Derb, in some respects Michael Lind’s … Continue reading

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Satanic Versus: Ayn Rand as Scarecrow (4)

Here’s Joe Carter writing in the theocon journal, First Things: Devotees of Rand may object to my outlining the association between [Rand and vintage Satanist Anton La Vey]. They will say I am proposing “guilt by association,” a form of … Continue reading

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The Dalai Lama, Again

Via USA Today: Usually what we hear from the Dalai Lama is an insistant yet soothing voice for compassion and peace. So Tsering Namgyal, a journalist based in Minneapolis, was jolted by the Dalai Lama’s talk to 150 Chinese students … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Mr Hume!

The Great Empiricist was born 300 years ago this weekend (May 7, 1711, N.S.)

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Your Ancestors Were Zombies

At a gathering the other day I mentioned Julian Jaynes, who caused a stir back in the 1970s with a very odd book about religion and human consciousness. Roger Kimball was present.  He later forwarded to me an essay on … Continue reading

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