Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Brian Leiter sends us here.
A conversation between a Jewish psychologist (nativist a la Chomsky) and an autistic professor of philosophy ["philosopher"]. The twin poles of modern rationalism trying to come to terms with religion and morality. So stupid. If you have no knowledge of the emotional and narrative ways in which people communicate with and seduce one another, you have no reason to even consider the questions.

Religion is storytelling. We live by stories and our faith in stories. "I love you" "Trust me" "I'll be right back." "Christ died for your sins".

I'd forgotten I wrote about this so long ago.

I've said this before too: Chomsky is on record saying he sees no connection between his political and academic interests, but that's bullshit. His naive faith in the human capacity for reason and his sense not only of our superiority but of our otherness within the animal kingdom are both rooted in Talmudic lore. It's the political naivete that drives men like DeLong nuts. But DeLong can't quite cop to the conservative tragic realism that fosters his contempt for Chomsky, in the same sense that he can't reconcile that realism with his public persona as optimistic futurist and liberal technocrat. All so obvious, and all so stupid.

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