Sunday, May 10, 2009

Tags: Philosophy, Culture, Determinism,

Chris Bertram: Justice, ethos, and parliamentary expenses

More examples of liberals coming to terms with the fact that rules are not enough. Less the return of this understanding to the broader public, which never forgot, than to the narrower academic one that did.
The study of the world does not begin with the study of externalities but in the study of our relationship to them.
The study of the world begins in the study of out relationship to it.
The slow painful process of accepting the obvious.

Religion is a system for maintaining social stability, it is not a system of truth production. The Bible is no more true than the Constitution, which is why Platonists are opposed to democracy, as relativism.

I'm always faintly disgusted by discussions of what is or is not now constitutional. Question of whether or not Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act 'is constitutional' can not be compared to a question of whether the table I'm sitting at 'is aluminum.'
The Constitution -the words on the page- is unchanging and as such, inert. We change. Our relations, to each other and to the words, change.

It amazes me that arch rationalists who see themselves as liberal are so unaware of how their logic reads when transposed to questions of judicial philosophy.

Rationalists who argue with the faithful feel compelled to do so because their philosophy requires them to see humans as computational actors, and when someone answers their logic with myth and allegory -defended as computation- they howl rather than responding with curiosity and questions. 'New Atheists' respond irrationally to the presence of computational illogic rather than trying to understand the patterns behind it. Those patterns serve a function, otherwise they wouldn't exist.
The new atheists are old-fashioned utopians. Given that utopianism is illogical what function does it serve for those who maintain it?
"Valid reasoning from pretty well-accepted psychological premises would surely 'dictate' the exact contrary." [also see below May 6th on this page]
So the fact that we understand we have to compensate for human weakness means we're strong. Now that we understand that power corrupts, we're incorruptible.

I've said it before: Isaac Asimov as a writer is only slightly better than Ayn Rand, and Hari Seldon is no better a model of philosopher king than John Galt. But liberals have posited freedom as truth, so therefore the world can be reduced to a philosophical and moral essence: a non-contradictory essence. That's how debate about ourselves and our desires becomes a debate about externalities, since truths must be externalities.

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