Category: This Week’s Special

  • What the [Bleep] Can we Know? Montaigne and the “Apology for Raymond Sebond.”

    By Kevin Currie-Knight ___ [The following is a transcript of the video linked at the end.] My sense is that the world today is too full of confidence in belief. It seems like today, it is imperative not only to have a belief about everything – the right politics, the right stance toward religion, what […]

  • STARTUPS: BREAKING THROUGH THREE CULTURES, BY ALEXANDER KAUFMAN

    Part Three ___ From AMERICA ___ July 13, 1954 was a sizzling, humid, hot boiling day when I walked down the gangplank off the Queen Elizabeth and onto the West Side highway where Tom Friedman welcomed me to New York. Tom had acted as my agent in Israel selling my cartoons to newspapers and magazines, […]

  • STARTUPS: BREAKING THROUGH THREE CULTURES, BY ALEXANDER KAUFMAN

    Part Two ___ From MANDATORY PALESTINE ___ When he picked us up at the port upon our arrival, my uncle Max brought his daughter Ruth along, and she became my first playmate. She was my cousin, born in Mannheim too, but her family had moved to Stuttgart where I once visited and where we rode […]

  • StartUps: Breaking Through Three Cultures, by Alexander Kaufman

    Part One ___ Alexander Kaufman’s Startups: Breaking Through Three Cultures may look like a biography at first glance, but it really is the story of a distinctively 20th century man, and in that sense it is also a story of the 20th century itself. It is the tale of the trip that my father took […]

  • Three New Books: Three — How to Keep an Open Mind, edited by Richard Bett

    by Kevin Currie-Knight ____ A friend  of mine posted a meme about how vegans are cultural elitists because they do not take seriously the fact that many societies are dependent on eating animals. Against my better judgment, I chimed in. I pointed out that it isn’t necessarily cultural elitism to see something another culture does […]

  • THREE NEW BOOKS: tWO — jULIA GALEF’S “THE SCOUT MINDSET”

    By Kevin Currie-Knight ____ Early in her book, The Scout Mindset: Why Some People See Things Clearly and Others Don’t (Portfolio, 2021), Julia Galef comes right out and says: “Motivated reasoning is so fundamental to the way our minds work that it’s almost strange to have a special name for it; perhaps it should just […]

  • three new books: One – jesse singal’s, “The Quick Fix”

    by Kevin Currie-Knight ____ Three new books came out in April 2021 that I have been eager to read (Jesse Singal’s The Quick Fix; Julia Galef’s The Scout Mindset; and How to Keep an Open Mind, Richard Bett’s abridged/annotated translation of the works of Sextus Empiricus) Upon having read them, it occurred to me that […]

  • This Week’s Special: On a Metaphor in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics

    by Daniel A. Kaufman I want to talk about a certain metaphor in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics.  It appears in a lone sentence in Book III, Ch. 3., and while mentioned only briefly, it is significant, not just in understanding the Ethics, but in grasping a crucial point about the limits of reason and deliberation more […]

  • This Week’s Special: George Orwell’s, “Politics and the English Language”

    by Daniel A. Kaufman Orwell’s influential essay, published in 1946, when considered alongside his “The Prevention of Literature” (1946) and the Appendix to 1984, “The Principles of Newspeak” (1949), offers a powerful picture of language and its abuse, especially in the arena of politics.  It is one of those essays that seems more prescient with […]

  • This Week’s Special: John Stuart Mill’s “Utilitarianism.”

    by Daniel A. Kaufman http://socserv.mcmaster.ca/econ/ugcm/3ll3/mill/utilitarianism.pdf One of the two most well-known, most influential works in moral philosophy – the other is Kant’s Groundwork  for the Metaphysics of Morals – Utilitarianism has the virtue of being highly readable, intuitively plausible (at least on first glance), and blissfully short.  Moral philosophy done at its very best. The […]