Monday, June 01, 2015

Posted elsewhere. Typed into a mobile.
I came here via an approving link from an academic philisopher (Leiter) who nonetheless has concerns over the "harm" following Waldron, of hate speech. "I know it when I hear it" seems to be the logic. All I can hear is cognitive dissonance. The author here is known for arguing that some people should do us all the favor and not vote; I doubt he was referring to any members of the Bush family, since even George W is the product not only of one of the most prestigious preparatory academies, Andover, (fellow alumnus David Graeber) but also both Yale and[!] Harvard. And now he's writing on a libertarian website. My favorite bit of libertarian wisdom comes from Peter Thiel, who opines:

"I must confess that over the last two decades, I have changed radically on the question of how to achieve these goals. Most importantly, I no longer believe that freedom and democracy are compatible."

Freedom of speech is the inseparable counterpart to freedom of inquiry. Citizens in a democracy have the obligation to be informed in order that they may govern. The freedom of the individual serves the freedom of the people, the self-governing community of equals. Individualism for its own sake is anathema, though with a wry smile. There's no democracy without irony, just ask a lawyer. Better that than the dictatorship of the self-righteous. And really, is there any other kind?
Fucking idiots. Search for Jason Brennan on my page. [here] I made the same obvious points on his posts at the Princeton Press blog.

Related, on the contemporary academic definition of "knowledge" that would include the above, and so much else. The last comment, by commenter T, on D Davies' absurd post. DD: "Bankers have had their day under scrutiny." He ignores the fact they've come away unscathed.
“Between the 1960s and the early 1980s, higher education began to serve a more diverse population of students, with many students having greater work and family commitments. At the same time, faculty interest in teaching declined as colleges and universities increasingly emphasized their role in producing new knowledge through research and scholarship. We began asking less of our students during this period, and their performance fell to meet our expectations. The good news, such as it is, is that the steep decline arrested itself in the early 1980s.”
Brighouse's indignant defense of Davies is hilarious. Rationalists rationalize.

The confusion of reason and knowledge. Discussion of the number of angels that can fit on the head of a pin is not a discussion of and does not result in knowledge. Political and philosophical formalisms, "I have come to the conclusion that anarchism is true" (Robert Paul Wolff) Jon Elster's claim to be a scientist, Rawlsian liberalism, economic "science" etc. The "research" model of art-making. The poetry of high purpose.

We're all more complex than our ideas. If you don't accept that, you're headed for a fall.

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