Category Archives: Philosophy

Altruism comes from a model – the virtues from life

Models, windows, reductionism and pluralism We’re familiar with the idea that thought creates ‘models’ of reality. So it’s easy to slip into thinking that our task is then to just make our models better and better, i.e. more accurate representations … Continue reading

Posted in Ask Troppo's Love Gods, Cultural Critique, Ethics, Philosophy, Political theory | 25 Comments

The journalist as courtier: COVID19 edition

Well, certainly wearing a mask walking down the streets of Melbourne makes no sense at all Brendan Murphy, Australia’s Chief Medical Officer, March 9.  The philosopher Mary Midgley styles her own writing as that of a critic. She means something … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Democracy, Economics and public policy, Health, Humour, Philosophy | 12 Comments

The Corona Dilemma.

Consider the shown picture where you are the decision maker who can pull the lever of the train tracks to avoid the coming train from going straight. If you do not divert the train, one person, John, will get run … Continue reading

Posted in Death and taxes, Democracy, Economics and public policy, Employment, Health, History, Libertarian Musings, Life, Philosophy, Politics - international, Public and Private Goods, Science, Society | 87 Comments

Conservative, liberal, social democrat 2.0

Hats off to Joseph Walker who’s podcasting up a storm at The Jolly Swagman (Yes, the title gave me the wrong idea too.) Anyway, I often find long-form podcasts rather tedious (except where I’m being interviewed in which case I find them endlessly … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Democracy, Economics and public policy, Philosophy, Political theory, Public and Private Goods | 13 Comments

Vale Dr Homer Rieth

Dr Homer Rieth, the subject of a marvellous profile by Earshot on Radio National has died. It’s an amazing story of a true philosopher, at least as suggested by the etymology of the word as a lover of wisdom. He … Continue reading

Posted in Isegoria, Philosophy | Leave a comment

The ghost of Descartes: Why is economics so uninterested in practical problem solving?

Initially published as Part One. Now with the final two sections added. Minds are not for thinking, traditionally conceived, but for doing, for getting things done in the world in real time Wilson and Foglia, “Embodied Cognition“, Stanford Encyclopedia of … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, Philosophy | 15 Comments

Intellectual authoritarianism: The Golden Age of Female Philosophy Edition

I do think that in normal times a lot of good female thinking is wasted because it simply doesn’t get heard. Mary Midgley I’ve written about the blokey intellectual authoritarianism of economics on numerous occasions, for instance writing here about how it … Continue reading

Posted in Economics and public policy, Education, Gender, History, Philosophy, Political theory | 18 Comments