The Journal of Applied Impossibility
Kant has a point worth acknowledging about the function of lying with respect to truth telling. He points out that in order for a lie to work the way its speaker intends, most people have to be telling the truth most of the time.* This is sometimes expressed by saying that lies are parasitic upon truth. Habermas will talk about strategic discourse (i.e. telling you what it takes in order to elicit certain outcomes I prefer) and how it makes use of communicative discourse (i.e. telling you true things for the sake of clear and accurate communication). Strategic discourse (parallel to, but not exactly equivalent to lying) depends on communicative discourse, but the reverse is not the case. If there's something I don't like about "the wokism" it's this: It
One of my problems with the current fad of “specifying one’s pronouns” is that it simply does not use language correctly. Phrases such as “my pronouns” or “I use XYZ pronouns” don’t mean what folks seem to think those phrases mean. First, pronouns are part of a language, and as such, do not belong to you or anyone else. They are not like a name. This is part of
When I first encountered the term “anti-racism” I assumed, as I was meant to assume, that it referred to something used to oppose or combat racism -- much the way antibacterial soap is meant to kill bacteria or anti-itch cream is meant to cure itching. It has since become clear that the “anti” in anti-racism functions much more like anti-clockwise or antimatter. If the hands of the clock start spinning anti-clockwise, they still go round the clock. We use “antimatter” to refer to another kind of matter -- made of antiparticles, each of which has a counterpart in ordinary matter. In this sense, the prefix “anti-” means something like “as seen through a perverse mirror.”
It seems to me that prefix of “Anti-racism” -- like that of “anti-fascism” is meant in this sense.
I was in college for the 2004 presidential race. I should have been for the 2000 race, but I was a dropout. Long story. I remember -- remember in the pit of my stomach -- the rancor of that election. I am ashamed that I was caught up in it. I am ashamed that one of my vices is a tendency toward this nourished bitterness. I bite on nearly every hook that is meant to drag me down and away.
When John Kerry was running for president, I remember that a portion of our national political vitriol was directed against Heinz Ketchup. Man, the aughts were weird. Anyhow, I hate the culture wars. Like everyone, I am swept up in them. But I hate them. If I had to pinpoint the exact moment that civilization collapsed, I would be inclined to say that it happened at my uncle's birthday party in July of 2004.
Here's a boring science fiction story. Like all fiction, it is not based on anything real and you definitely shouldn't attempt to draw any real-world conclusions based on the story. I repeat: it is purely fiction. This sort of thing would never really happen.
On planet Gorolbrax in a neighboring galaxy, there was a race of intelligent aliens with a culture as rich and complex as our own. Something interesting about Gorolbraxians is that about half of all of them were fuchsia and the rest were magenta -- and this ratio held true in every society on Gorolbrax. Among Gorolbraxians, there was some debate over which of the two groups was better at certain things, but everyone agreed that both the fuchsia and the magenta Gorolbraxians were vital parts of their planetary life and culture, and that neither group was inherently superior in terms of moral worth. And neither was hands down better at doing all the things Gorolbraxian society valued.
Then a fun new activity swept Gorolbraxian society by storm! They called it "tarandalation" ...
Note: originally posted on my personal site. Date changed here to reflect original posting date as I migrate my blog here.
I want to discuss politics on this blog, but in order to do so I need to develop a vocabulary. I have a meta-political pet peeve which I believe I can name and explain through a discussion of the parlance of magic. In honor of Penn and Teller, I’m going to try to make the world a slightly better place by giving away a secret to a magic trick. This is a big no-no in some parts of the magic world, and so I’m sorry to magicians everywhere. It’s for the greater good...
I write about all sorts of things. This is one of the places where I do it.