Plato’s Republic – Book IV: Sheeple

Continued from way back here. It might come as a surprise for us today to think that great political leaders don’t just pop out of thin air. In a time like ours when politics has reached a zenith of perfection, we might assume that excellent political leadership is easy – since our political leaders are […]

Plato’s Republic – Book III: Lies

Continued from about a month ago. Because I’m focusing more on the main images within the Republic rather than the arguments, I’ll spare you the tortuous road whereby Socrates arrives at this conclusion: “Then, it’s appropriate for the rulers, if for anyone at all, to lie for the benefit of the city in cases involving […]

Face Masks, Riots, and Aquinas on the Power of Human Law

In this post, I will not be discussing: How particular laws might need to change for the sake of racial justice and equity. Medical or statistical issues about the spread of COVID-19. Whether the particular laws in any given state are constitutional, or prudent, or the best possible. Instead, I will be addressing a much […]

Plato’s Republic – Book I: Garbage People

I figured since I teach the Republic every year I’ll write something about it. I’m convinced that the book is about the role of media (“poetry”) as much as it’s about politics and ethics, and about images much more than Forms, so what I’ll do is write one post for each of the ten Books […]

Excerpt from My Book

Among other projects, I’m keeping myself occupied during quarantine by writing a book explaining Aristotle’s ethics to non-philosophers. Below is the first section from Book VII. Let me know if you know anyone in publishing. Book VII – Habits Continence and Incontinence: Not Just about Peeing Your Pants  “We must now discuss incontinence and softness, […]

Digital Presence and Online Teaching

Because we’ll all have to be teaching and learning online in the coming weeks, I’ve been thinking about the differences between online learning and in-class learning. My pedagogy is pretty simple in general, and I’ve taught online courses before, so I’m not very occupied with thoughts of that. I’m more curious about a philosophical issue: […]

Not Everyone Deserves an Opinion

One thing I’m dreading with the coronavirus quarantine happening is podcasts. You know what a podcast is, right? It’s where a dude with barely any intelligence and a high opinion of himself allows the world to hear his barely intelligent opinions about things he first heard about that morning. This kind of pollution fills the […]

Open Letter

To the People Next to me at the Red Light Today Blasting Dance Music in Their Car, Symbolizing All of Humanity, I get it. Parties are fun. Being at them makes you feel young and rich and excited and happy. So while you’re driving you put on some dance music to make it feel like […]