Love my substratum: A philosophical note on Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged”

March 6, 2019 by · Comments Off on Love my substratum: A philosophical note on Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged” 

In the history of philosophy, there are at least two famous instances of positing the existence of an entity having no identity: Aristotle’s “prima materia“, and John Locke’s “substratum“.  In her novel Atlas Shrugged, author Ayn Rand concretizes the problem associated with the idea of an entity lacking an identity by way of a passage concerning love. Read more

The Lexicon of Government

January 15, 2019 by · Comments Off on The Lexicon of Government 

{The following are my notes, drafted in preparation for my January 14, 2019 video, The Lexicon of Government, available on my youtube channel, and embedded at the bottom of these notes.}

The other day, I was watching an “Ask Me Anything” Q&A session by Dave Rubin on his youtube channel, The Rubin Report. One of his viewers asked him what he thought about minarchism?  Not having pronounced the word correctly, it seems pretty clear that this was the first time he had come across the concept of minarchism.  Now, if you’ve seen the Rubin Report, you will know that Dave Rubin has been on journey of political development, and that he only recently discovered himself not to be the leftist he used to think himself to be.  In fact the whole purpose of Dave’s show is to challenge one’s beliefs and to improve oneself in the process.  So it’s not all that surprising that he hadn’t heard of minarchy before.

However, the term minarchy is – at the very least – problematic, and the incident on Dave’s show reminded me of a topic that I’ve been meaning to write about for almost two decades.  That topic is: The Forms of Government, and How to Name them.  And that is my topic today. Read more