Dreaming of Deliberate Reason

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I dreamt last night of Bertrand Russell. The furniture was outdoors. We spoke of the uselessness of war. A good dream, without the false neo-liberal moue of disgust at positivism. 

 

“In America everybody is of the opinion that he has no social superiors, since all men are equal, but he does not admit that he has no social inferiors, for, from the time of Jefferson onward, the doctrine that all men are equal applies only upwards, not downwards.”

With no social inferiors in the public’s imagination the Cato Institute would be out of business. 

Nowadays America is the land of expert marginalization. Perhaps we could call it the marginalization-industrial-complex. Academics contribute to this by sanctioning separatist nomenclatures, usually in the name of identity politics. This is the principle failure of neo-liberalism in higher education. Meanwhile the poor get poorer and medicare dependent cancer patients are deprived of treatments under sequestration. Make no mistake: sequestration is a policy and not a bargaining chip. The politics of all men are created equal applies only upwards. 

“The man who has no tincture of philosophy goes through life imprisoned in the prejudices derived from common sense, from the habitual beliefs of his age or his nation, and from convictions which have grown up in his mind without the co-operation or consent of his deliberate reason. To such a man the world tends to become definite, finite, obvious; common objects rouse no questions, and unfamiliar possibilities are contemptuously rejected.”