Everything ends: Explaining the modern world

The modern world looks increasingly mired in crisis. Why? It’s fashionable to explain today’s world through two prisms: modern politics and modern economics—or the modern state and capitalism. Even the words sound slightly intimidating. So instead of defining them from a dictionary, I would like to begin with a historical account of how these pillars … Continue reading Everything ends: Explaining the modern world

Grounding for the metaphysics of politics and morals

In 1785, Immanuel Kant wrote a treatise entitled Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals, wherein Kant made the case for an ethic of "autonomy", or the individual's responsibility for their own actions as the ultimate moral good. Kant didn't think the physical separation between individuals in the world of experiences, or "the phenomenal realm", was … Continue reading Grounding for the metaphysics of politics and morals

The foundational contradictions of liberalism

Liberalism is an ideology—a system of thought. It has a centrepiece: the individual, defined by liberalism as a free-floating unit, separate from other units. It has two basic contradictions: The politico-moral contradiction; and The public-private contradiction. Meet Immanuel Kant: A founding liberal. These contradictions arise from two factors. Liberalism: Accepts the early-modern separation between politics … Continue reading The foundational contradictions of liberalism