On the Whole

Republished in June 2022. It is common to see the world as fundamentally divided. We think that we are separate from other people, and that people are separate from the natural world. Some philosophers agree. Nature, as early-modern Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza put it, is divided between the properties of thought and matter. Plato thought … Continue reading On the Whole

Neumann’s ‘Behemoth’ and the rebirth of totalitarian-monopoly capitalism

Franz Neumann published one of the earliest books on the totalitarian state, entitled Behemoth. It is a startling representation of the divided state of Nazi Germany, one that challenges established conventions on totalitarianism. According to conventional interpretations both then and now, totalitarianism represents a singular entity, a powerful state echoing the ‘reall Unitie’ of Hobbes’ … Continue reading Neumann’s ‘Behemoth’ and the rebirth of totalitarian-monopoly capitalism

The realist school: An emerging paradigm

First published on 14 June 2022. Sometimes, intellectual thought undergoes a rupture that cannot be stopped. It does not matter how much you resist the conceptual tsunami, or how far you run. It will tear down what you know, and force any remaining ideas to cluster around the victorious Noah’s ark of the God-given intellectual … Continue reading The realist school: An emerging paradigm

How capitalism ends

First published on 14 September 2020. There are several dimensions to the supposed demise of capitalism. There are two developments and two critical contradictions behind the system’s present afflictions. Capitalism may end, however, in two different ways—one of which less an end to capitalism than a return to a different form of capitalism. Lastly, if … Continue reading How capitalism ends

Staying alive: What role does consent play in Hobbes’ Leviathan?

Submitted as a university essay in spring 2020. ‘Consent’ in Hobbes’ Leviathan plays the role of legitimating the state, primarily for the sake of securing survival. Hobbes uses consent as a legitimation story to preserve and pursue (1) the survival of the citizen, sovereign, and Commonwealth, (2) the honour of the citizen, sovereign, and Commonwealth, (3) natural and theological justice, … Continue reading Staying alive: What role does consent play in Hobbes’ Leviathan?

Berkeleyan Platonism: A philosophy of pure ideas

There is an argument by Kurt Gödel that I find fascinating. Gödel argued that his predecessors’ attempt to create a complete set of logical axioms to ground mathematics was doomed to fail. Instead, mathematical ideas must subsist unto themselves (as must, presumably, logical ideas). Ideas cannot complete each other. They are sufficient unto themselves. But … Continue reading Berkeleyan Platonism: A philosophy of pure ideas

Trade makes war: A social theory of violence

War and violence are words that denote extreme forms of social behaviour, even referred to as asocial or antisocial behaviour, in keeping with the immoral and dehumanising acts they accompany. But this was not always the case. War and violence were once seen as far more normal parts of the human conditions than they are … Continue reading Trade makes war: A social theory of violence

#FreeBritney — Britney’s truth: Abuse will lose, and humanity will win

Britney Spears’ latest audio revelations of her years-long abuse at the hands of her father, assisted by her mother and sister, are striking and terrifying. One night, the helicopters flew in, and Britney’s life began to end — or so it seemed. Compelled to continue releasing album after album, Britney’s musical maturation went hand-in-hand with … Continue reading #FreeBritney — Britney’s truth: Abuse will lose, and humanity will win