Tag: Epistemic Institutional Design

  • Must we destroy the profession in order to save it?

    Jason Brennan, The Ethics of Voting, 2011, page 5: “The right to vote and the rightness of voting are different things. I do not argue that we should disenfranchise anyone. Though I think many voters are wrong to vote, I will not argue that anyone should prevent them from voting.” (Emphasis mine) Eric Schliesser, New APPS,…

  • Deciding Whether or Not to Tell a Story

    When I was an undergraduate, I took a class called “Truth and Beauty” with the poet Ann Lauterbach. It was basically a class on reading and writing essays, but I took it because I was a philosophy major and I thought it would be about aesthetics, i.e. about whether judgments about beauty can be true…

  • Democracy Means Asking the Right Questions

    Whenever I talk to students about democracy, I like to emphasize that the original term for democratic rule was isonomy. Consider the account Otanes gives in Herodotus’ History: “[T]he rule of the multitude [plêthos de archon] has… the loveliest name of all, equality [isonomiên]…. It determines offices by lot, and holds power accountable, and conducts all deliberating…

  • The Commons: Restore or Build New?

    Most discussions of the Commons assume that common-pool resources are supplied by nature, like the English fields that were available to locals for grazing, cultivation, and hay-cutting until the Inclosure Acts. However, it is equally possible to create new common pool resources for local control. Kojo Nnamdi spent an hour on his radio show yesterday…

  • 23 Things about Capitalism

    In his new book 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism, Ha-Joon Chang offers a progressive explanation for what Tyler Cowen calls “The Great Stagnation,” the slowing growth in public goods available for consumption or redistribution. Between his various jibes at a strawman version of the standard economic model, Chang offers a persuasive analysis…

  • What can small groups do?

    I’ve just returned from two weeks at the Tufts Summer Institute of Civic Studies, which culminated in a conference attended by 117 researchers, practitioners, philanthropists, and public officials interested in expanding the role of citizens in our democracy. Peter Levine summed up the conference here: The Frontiers conference was modeled on No Better Time, a…