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Philosophy

Then, Now, Us and Them

When I was a child the landscape of downtown Lansing was very different than it is today. There used to be two theaters in the downtown area, the Knapps, JC Penny, and Walgreen stores were thriving businesses, and the Radisson Hotel and Lansing Centers had not yet been built. In many ways the downtown area […]

Protect Us from Ourselves

I’ve championed the ideas of individual rights and the ideas of the founding fathers for years. Many people in the media, however, are declaring that this latest shooting in Colorado is a wake-up call and something must be done to protect the populace now, Constitution be damned. I’m tired of repeating the same arguments all […]

The Problem of Evil (part 2)

I attempted to address this issue before in a limited sense. I will revisit this theme with the intention of providing a fuller, more comprehensive treatment of the view of the subject. My older and brother and I were once having a discussion wherein I described someone or something as evil. My brother replied by […]

Barack Obama and the Muslim Claim

According to polls a growing number of Americans think President Obama is Muslim with key percentage differences between Democrats and Republicans (conservatives are more likely to hold this belief than liberals although the numbers are significant on both sides). When I first heard these claims at the beginning of Obama’s Presidency I chalked it up […]

Atheist v Muslim

An atheist who appeared in a Halloween parade dressed as the Prophet Muhammad while shouting provacative phrases was allegedly assaulted by a Muslim. The case has taken a turn for the controversial when the judge in the case dismissed the charges citing a lack of evidence. In dismissing the case, however, the judge admonished the […]

The Rationality Problem

The philosopher Ayn Rand held as a postulate that the inherent rights of humankind stem in part from the fact that man is by nature a rational animal and can only exist properly by being allowed to use his mind. This is correct in its essence but should come with a caveat. The human psyche […]

Confronting Bias

Back in the ’90s, Bob at work was telling me how he had discovered the writing of Walter Mosley when then President Bill Clinton had answered a reporter’s question on what books he was currently reading. The President had responded with the name of one of Mosley’s books and after that incident, the sales of […]

The Logical Conclusion

In any nation that holds the good of society to be the highest standard, the individual ceases to be seen as a valuable entity worthy of basic rights and protections. We have seen this in theocratic totalitarian regimes like Iran, we have seen it in fascist governments like Hitler’s Nazi Germany, and now we see […]

A New Thought

No I don’t mean a new thought in the history of humankind, I mean something just occurred to me that I had personally never thought of before. One of the most common objections to the concept of evolutionary biology is the hostility to the possibility that personality traits, to some degree, might be innate rather […]

Lies

As a general rule I don’t believe in the benevolent lie. I believe it’s possible to tell the truth judiciously, which is to say tactfully, but I don’t believe in lying for the sake of good, not to people who aren’t your sworn enemies anyway. I remember one day when my two middle kids put […]