Thursday, August 05, 2010

No contradiction. As I say, even granting everything else, it seems to me entirely wrong to think that I am entitled to what I would have under justice.
So one is obliged [by objective justice?] to use normative means [objectively just or not?] in this objectively unjust society to obtain outcomes that would be normative in an objectively just society.

Is justice a process or a result? Is it a wave or a particle?

This is where idealist liberalism falls apart. Idealism demands action, so is in effect authoritarian. Liberalism accepts that some things can't be known, demanding only a close reading of cases and continuing debate [Again, this leads to another contradiction that can't be avoided: the role of the military in a democracy.] Liberalism as a form of realism, defined as humanism before the 18th century, doesn't try to solve every problem but tries to foster the ability in people to think clearly and perceptively, not to demand clarity where there is none, but to engage ambiguity without fear.

Seeking the ‘Eye’ for Art.
The article ignores the fact that being able to read and intuit situations and gestures is foundational to social life. Most fans are critics, and good diagnosticians, of any sort, are connoisseurs. The article would be better written without the defense of elitism but the subject is fine art so it's limited to that; no one would ever attack the 'elitism' of the NBA players association.

The problem arises for democracy when there's only one measure of success, when there's only one elite and they alone are claimed to represent a universal value called "truth." It does us all a disservice when assumptions trump perception, but these days schools teach the former more than the latter, teaching what to think not how.

Democracy is founded in structured forms of public argument; justice is due process, not result. Questions of substantive due process come down not to truth or falsity but what we value, and value is a form of high preference. In describing our preferences we describe our relations to one another and the world as we experience it; the external world is something else entirely.

Expertise without connoisseurship is knowledge without understanding, intellectually passive, and passivity in any form undermines democracy.


[As always for the history of the graph click on the "make it idiot-proof" tag.]

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