21 August 2013

Secular and Absolute

I co-authored an article with Craig Biddle called, "George Will: A Conservative 'None' in Need of Ayn Rand's Theory of Rights." Check it out on The Objective Standard blog.

On a related topic, also see Harry Binswanger's excellent and crucially important article called "Capitalism Without God: Freedom Is A Secular But Absolute Value" at the Forbes web site.

Coerced Insurance Is Not Insurance

The "adverse-selection" problem that Robert H. Frank describes in a New York Times article would not be a problem at all in a free market. My article on this is posted at The Objective Standard blog. 

Also, Rituparna Basu wrote a good article on Forbes that is related to the topic of coercing insurers.

17 July 2013

Carlotta Nobile Plays Bloch

I just saw the very sad report that the young Italian violinist Carlotta Nobile died yesterday. She was only 24 years old. Apparently, she had been diagnosed with melanoma two years ago, which spread to her brain. How awful.

Below is a video of Carlotta playing the Baal Shem suite of Ernest Bloch.

12 June 2013

Obama Gets Rights Wrong

"The promise of America is not a 'right' to have one’s needs such as health care, education, jobs, and housing provided by the government. . . . When the government attempts to provide citizens with goods and services that have to be produced, it does so by forcing some individuals to produce for the sake of others, thereby violating the rights of those who are forced."

Read my entire post at the TOS Blog.

08 May 2013

Obama's Un-American Call to "Service" and "Duty"

"Hopefully, some of the Ohio State University graduates recognized the deeply un-American meaning of Obama’s address (not to mention his chilling plea to 'reject these voices' that warn of encroaching tyranny). These young Americans should pursue futures not of sacrifice and duty, but of value achievement and personal happiness. That is what America is all about."

Here's the rest of the article on the TOS Blog.

01 May 2013

Die Erste Walpurgisnacht

As an antidote to the socialist/communist/anarchist ideas of International Workers' Day that now infects the original pagan celebration of spring, I recommend listening to Mendelssohn's Die Erste Walpurgisnacht, Op. 60. Enjoy!

26 April 2013

The FCC Gives Ortiz a Free Pass (This Time)

"Although the informal tone and manner of Genachowski’s absolution of Ortiz conveyed support for the city, its underlying message is ominous. The fact that the FCC made an official statement at all serves as a reminder that speech in the United States is broadcast not by right but by permission."

See my article on the TOS Blog.

18 April 2013

The Boston Marathon

The TOS Blog posted my article on Tuesday.



12 January 2013

Review of The DIM Hypothesis

(I submitted the following review of Leonard Peikoff's The DIM Hypothesis to Goodreads and Amazon.)

Apart from Ayn Rand's body of work itself, this is the single most remarkable feat of integration (i.e. of methodical, hierarchical conceptualization from innumerable particulars) I have ever encountered. It will take me years to fully digest it, but my estimate after my first careful reading is that Dr. Peikoff's hypothesis is exactly--profoundly--correct.

Having just read the final chapters in one big gulp, I am astonished to find that my mental state is one of agitation and reeling, exhibiting the persistent, soul-quaking urgency that I have found only in the rare work of literature (or, even more rarely, in certain essays). I hardly expected to find my pulse rate quicken in response to a work of technical philosophy that reads like a university text book. But there it is.

Ironically, having just praised this book, I am led by my grasp of the material to suspect a certain futility in recommending it to a general reader. To use Dr. Peikoff's terminology (and I apologize for having to resort to terms that requires reading the book to understand), only an "I" mentality would accept the task: to a "D" the reasoning is bootless, to an "M" inimical. Despite this sense of futility, though, I wholeheartedly--no, wholemindedly--recommend this to anyone who is even remotely interested in ideas and their role in history. Who knows? Occasionally, sparks ignite what might have seemed to be unlikely tinder.