Elections, Partisanship, and the Call for Moderation in Civic Life

Progressive and Moderate - The Motive Spirit

No matter how much we might disagree about one law or policy, that disagreement should not be allowed to destroy the possibility of a future alliance on a different problem. Citizens tempted by partisanship have to find a way to hold their ideas and convictions loosely. They have to preserve civic friendship and reject permanent divisions.

2012 is NOT the Most Expensive Election in History, in GDP-adjusted Terms

Last year, I suggested that liberal objections to Citizens United were partly justified by predictions about its effects that I didn’t see as probable. As the election draws to a close, we can begin to say whether the consensus view or my own views were accurate. Here goes: as a percentage of GDP, this is simply… Continue reading 2012 is NOT the Most Expensive Election in History, in GDP-adjusted Terms

The Fallacy Fallacy [sic] of Mood Affiliation (Workplace Domination Part Two)

In his initial response to the the Crooked Timber bloggers, Cowen also suggests that he doesn’t like the “mood affiliation” of the CT bloggers: I am not comfortable with the mood affiliation of the piece.  How about a simple mention of the massive magnitude of employee theft in the United States, perhaps in the context… Continue reading The Fallacy Fallacy [sic] of Mood Affiliation (Workplace Domination Part Two)

Did the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act “Bend the Cost Curve” on Campaign Spending?

Apparently, it did! On Thursday, I produced a graph and some older papers in economics that made the case that there is a pretty clear trend in campaign spending that was completely unaffected by the 2002 BCRA. However, I’m a philosopher, not an econometrician, so I left off the most important part: comparing growth in… Continue reading Did the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act “Bend the Cost Curve” on Campaign Spending?

Arendtian Natality, Caplan’s Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids, and Antinatalism

Because of my work on Hannah Arendt, I often struggle with the apparent incongruity between her account of natality and my own tendency towards antinatalism. Natality is at the heart of Arendt’s project, a rejection of the Heideggerian obsession with mortality and being-towards-death: “It is in the nature of beginning that something new is started… Continue reading Arendtian Natality, Caplan’s Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids, and Antinatalism