Tagged: Plato

Democracy Without Reservations

The other day, I had a written exchange with a Korean student about the problems of modern education, and specifically the narrow agenda-driven nature of modern teaching content and methods. Along the way, as one example of the problem, my student noted the gulf between political theory as presented at school and the lessons in political philosophy that she and I had discussed...

The View From the Stars

A student with whom I engage in regular philosophical discussions sent me the following musing, after admiring the night sky during a full moon: A few stars reveal their existence by the tiny but clear sparkle, and I think of how tiny I will be from the point of view of the stars. How short human life will be, and how small some...

The Unjust City On A Hill

U.S. President Joe Biden, always a fountain of wisdom, says that he does not believe there was any way the U.S. military could withdraw from Afghanistan without precipitating the “chaos” we are seeing now.  First: Then the simple solution is, “Do not withdraw.” Second: Stop using the rhetorical masking word “chaos.” What is happening is not chaos; it is a strategic and systematic...

Notes On The Tribunal: Cultural Appropriation

Cultural appropriation is a thoroughly Western notion. Therefore, every non-Western intellectual or activist who declares cultural appropriation in defense of his own society’s exclusive rights to its local customs, fashions, or language is actually committing cultural appropriation in so declaring. For, on the premises of the progressive argument, he is employing ideas to which he has no right, grounded in intellectual concepts and...

Self-Knowledge

Just the way it is.– Our age is subject to normalcy bias on a scale that would be utterly unthinkable and practically impossible without a century of compulsory government schooling designed to indoctrinate every human being to spiritual submission and the matter-of-fact acceptance of bondage.

The Long-Range Outlook

If an elected government can sweep away a nation’s founding principles, pride, and moral essence in three months, then that nation’s principles were already reduced to sand, its pride no better than a dust ball, its moral essence just a bit of dead skin. Joe Biden and his communist puppeteers have achieved nothing, in fact, that was not effectively a fait accompli. That...

Reflections Out of Season

Fast talk usually means weak thought. Speed, as a rule, is superficiality’s colorful mask. In rhetoric, whether political, legal, or academic, the fast talker hopes to mesmerize your senses with how many words he can spew forth without a pause, in lieu of engaging your reason with the profundity of his ideas. The incessant and rapid flow disrupts sober attention and evades hard...

Two Senses of Moderation

Recently, a student asked me whether possessing the virtue of moderation can make a person happy. “What I can be sure about,” she said, “is that not being moderate makes me unhappy.” It does not follow from this, however, she observed, that being moderate actually causes happiness — unless happiness is defined merely as the absence of unhappiness. A Stoic or Epicurean might...

Reflections on Writing and Writers

Anyone who writes for attention is not a real writer. Writing is spiritualized hiding. It is no accident that Shakespeare, the greatest of all writers, is the one about whose life and person we know the least. He wrote dozens of the most magnificent works in literary history, and yet we are not certain who he was — or even whether he was....

On Comfort and Freedom

In my “Impolitic Reflections,” I noted Plato’s antagonism toward democracy, rooted in his presumption that the majority of men will always have appetitive natures, and therefore be unfit to direct a city that wishes to be just and wise. For this reason, I explained, he has his Socrates argue that in founding a good city, “you would never place any of its decision-making...