Why Liz Truss’s policies will not promote long-term growth — and the other parties have no good alternatives

Political debates these days are deeply frustrating to me, as they seem to completely miss the point. On the one hand, the so-called ‘left wing’ launches tirades against economic growth, calling out GDP figures by drawing attention to the socio-ecological background against which technological development rests. At least, that is how I imagine the left … Continue reading Why Liz Truss’s policies will not promote long-term growth — and the other parties have no good alternatives

Peace for all time: The enduring insights of Thomas Hobbes

Originally published on 24 September 2022. Seventeenth-century political theorist Thomas Hobbes has a paradoxical attitude to power. On the one hand, he thinks that 'the pursuit of power, after power' is the root and stem of 'Warre', of 'every man, against every man', leaving the 'life of man, solitary, poore, nasty, brutish, and short'. But … Continue reading Peace for all time: The enduring insights of Thomas Hobbes

The Human Rights Act, the varieties of exploitation, and the myth of a purely private economy

Even in our enlightened society, we have a peculiarly narrow view of what torture is. Sometimes we refer to the broader view as noted by the Equality and Human Rights Commission: Article 3 of the HRA protects you from mental or physical torture, and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, including the risk of facing such … Continue reading The Human Rights Act, the varieties of exploitation, and the myth of a purely private economy

Trying my patience: The distinction between philosophy and sophistry

I have recently been confronted with the idea of sophistry, and the weaponisation of this term to attack philosophy. But I do not think this is philosophical. Indeed, to use sophistry to attack philosophy is itself sophistical. Let me explain how sophistry and philosophy differ, by contrasting two ancient Greek individuals: Isocrates, and Socrates. Ludwig … Continue reading Trying my patience: The distinction between philosophy and sophistry

Freedom for all: Why the media’s use of the term ‘modern slavery’ is oddly dehumanising, and downright sinister

I have previously commented on how universities can distract from ongoing workplace exploitation by contrasting our situation with those of our ancestors bound in chattel slavery, from Ancient Greece and Rome (contexts which remain strangely ignored by reports into slavery’s long legacy) to the trans-Saharan (again, an oddly ignored context, seeing as it served as … Continue reading Freedom for all: Why the media’s use of the term ‘modern slavery’ is oddly dehumanising, and downright sinister

Kant do charisma: Why Anthony Fantano is wrong about Kanye West

I have for more times than I can recall drawn a distinction between two pillars of modern music: 1. Technique, and 2. Art. Technique relates to instrumental skill and general musical nous. Think musical theory but also the practical application of this theory. What space, then, does this leave for art? Art relates to a … Continue reading Kant do charisma: Why Anthony Fantano is wrong about Kanye West

Survival, community, and freedom: An accelerationist manifesto for conservative civic socialism

The left and its project of equality can seem to have two enemies: the centrist project of liberty and the right-wing project of community. All these moral positions also seem to miss the realist emphasis on survival. But I think there is a way of having our cake and eating it — building a left-wing … Continue reading Survival, community, and freedom: An accelerationist manifesto for conservative civic socialism

Hiding in plain sight: The resurrection of grand theory through intellectual history

It is often said that grand theory is dead, while intellectual history lives. At the 'end of history' following the Cold War, anticipated by several 'ends' of history since the philosopher Hegel proclaimed Napoleon and himself the ends of political and philosophical history in the early nineteenth century, it became intellectually illegitimate to construct a … Continue reading Hiding in plain sight: The resurrection of grand theory through intellectual history