I’d like to buy the world a Coke. I imagine you would too, though perhaps we’d both make it something a little lower in sugar. Unfortunately, making the world a better place for some people, even for the vast majority of people, cannot but make it a worse one for others, even if only a … Continue reading THE SUMMA POLITICA
Apart from the half dozen things I do care about – and for aught I know I’m the only one who does – I pretty much live in my own little world. My wife, by contrast, researches everything. She even knows, go figure, which Year of Our Lord it happens to be. But she doesn’t … Continue reading AT THE RISK OF SOUNDING TRANSPHOBIC …
Let’s not quibble about whether they came across the Bering Strait or miraculously burst into being sui generis. Let’s just say that those who descended from those who could be found in the Western Hemisphere prior to 1492 shall be its ‘indigenous’ peoples, and those who descended from those who came thereafter, mostly from Europe, … Continue reading AT THE RISK OF SOUNDING RACIST …
I am not going to claim that all of us play host to revenge fantasies, because then I couldn’t deny – which I categorically do – that I certainly do. So everything I say here is prefixed by an I-hear-tell, or an I-have-a-friend-who. When I slip into the first person, plural or singular, or into … Continue reading WHAT DO REVENGE FANTASIES TELL US ABOUT ETHICS?
Much as I’d sometimes like to be, I’m not a knee-jerk civil libertarian. I understand that the maintenance – and before that the promotion – of a civil society sometimes requires limits to freedom of movement, of association, of expression, even of thought. But I want to see if I can draw some lines here, … Continue reading CHALLENGE versus RIDICULE
LESSON 1: NATURAL LAW AND POSITIVE LAW There are, among the Great Unwashed – that’s everybody except me, by the way – some pretty serious misconceptions about law. Some people, including some philosophers, think there’s something called natural law, by which they mean rules that govern how we should behave - and would govern how … Continue reading TWO LECTURES YOU WON’T GET AT LAW SCHOOL
The recent spat – actually it’s turning into a spate of spats - between Donald Trump and the mainstream media, has resurrected a query I’ve had for decades. What exactly justifies freedom of the press? The standard bromide, recall, is that democracy presupposes, and so requires, an informed electorate. But surely that, in turn, presupposes … Continue reading FREEDOM OF THE PRESS AND THE BROMIDE