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Provocations

by Daniel A. Kaufman Righteous Business Ideological do-goodism has infected American business – or at least some of American business – to the point that I find myself pining for rapacious capitalists. Just this past April, my parents were visiting us, for Pesach, as well as for my daughter’s fourteenth birthday.  (This year, the birthday and first-night Seder were just […]

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On Philosophy and Its Progress (a response — of sorts — to Massimo Pigliucci)

by Daniel A. Kaufman Massimo Pigliucci has just finished publishing his book, The Nature of Philosophy: How Philosophy Makes Progress and Why It Matters, in serial form over at his blog, Plato’s Footnote. (1)  Just the other day, the first of three video-dialogues on the book aired on the Sophia program, over at MeaningofLife.TV.  (2)  Needless to say, I’ve been […]

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Cat People and Dog People

by Mark English What do our attitudes to cats and dogs tell us about ourselves? (If anything.) I’m not a psychologist and generally try to avoid the amateur psychologizing that these sorts of questions tend to encourage. But sketching out some preliminary thoughts on the general matter of attitudes towards cats and dogs and the binary thinking which is so […]

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Socrates in the Weingarten

By Paul So This is a response to a Washington Post article written by Gene Weingarten, which can be found here. We highly recommend you check it out, before reading this dialogue. Socrates: Hello Gene. Gene Weingarten: Wait….is that Socrates? It can’t be….you’re dead! You must be some homeless guy, impersonating Socrates. Where did you get that toga…? Socrates: Oh, […]

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The Blank Slate – It isn’t what Pinker thinks

By Paul So In Steven Pinker’s popular book The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature, Pinker characterizes the Blank State as “the idea that the human mind has no inherent structure and can be inscribed at will by society or ourselves.” Pinker is characterizing the loose set of views, commonly held by today’s humanities and social science intellectuals, […]

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Who’s in the Name?

by E. John Winner Recently, fans of a certain aggressive R&B music found cause to mourn the loss of one of the most prolific songwriters in popular music history. He was christened Prince Rogers Nelson [1], and we already have a problem.  He was not really named after a previous Nelson – he was named after a jazz band, the […]

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Mixing but Not Matching

by Mark English It’s easier to see – and say – what’s not the case than to say what is the case; to see – and say – what’s wrong with other people’s views than to outline one’s own in a coherent and convincing way. In fact, I have doubts that it is possible to achieve the latter at all […]

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