Thursday, January 28, 2010

Help!

Because I took so much time off, and because I have so much on my list, I am going to throw out a bunch of topics and ask for help in prioritizing. So, let me know if any of the below trips your trigger. And, if no one comments, well, I'll feel bad.

-What is "pollution", is the earth "dirty", and various on global warming

-Supreme Court case overturning campaign financing, free speech issues, and political correctness in Fort Hood case

-Brown's election and the Republicans

-The meaning of the political decline of Obama

-What's happening in the economy and why? Also, update on the Federal Reserve.

-Some economic's book reviews

-Discussion of Daniel Gilbert's series on PBS "This Emotional Life" (and his book "Stumbling on Happiness")

-Discussion of Cato philosopher Badhwar's criticism of Objectivism

-The Europeanification of America: Why Are American's taken in by European Intellectuals?

-Some more history of fractional reserve banking, it's role in the current crisis, and the (my) case against it

17 comments:

Galileo Blogs said...

All of them??

Okay, I will settle for my top three:

(1) The meaning of the political decline of Obama

(2) Some more history of fractional reserve banking, it's role in the current crisis, and the (my) case against it

(3) Discussion of Cato philosopher Badhwar's criticism of Objectivism

C. August said...

I've the opposite problem. I have nothing I want to write about. It seems that nothing is new under the sun, and I've commented fully on most topics of interest right now. And taking the time for detailed philosophical posts like my one on Kleist and Kant takes too much time to do it often.

If for no other reason than I'm curious to see where you go with it, I'm interested in "The Europeanification of America: Why Are Americans taken in by European Intellectuals?" It's a process that's been going on since the mid-1800's or earlier, so I wonder where you'll draw the line. I think it has to do with the failure of Enlightenment thinkers to take the next step and fully and openly embrace atheism, and then ground their ethics in the natural world. In other words, they needed Rand. That time gap between the Enlightenment and Rand gave the Socialism-to-Postmodernism trend plenty of time to get a stranglehold on American intellectual life.

Lynne said...

My picks:

1)The Europeanification of America: Why Are American's taken in by European Intellectuals?

2)Supreme Court case overturning campaign financing, free speech issues, and political correctness in Fort Hood case

3)What is "pollution", is the earth "dirty", and various on global warming

Doug Reich said...

C.,

You have given me an idea to try. I would like to throw out a topic and see if I can solicit people's ideas. If you have even a two sentence thought or a lot to say then throw something in.

Let's follow up on C.'s comment. The topic is: "The Europeanification of America: Why American's are taken in by European Intellectuals"

I don't want to tip my hand too much as to what I think. Suffice to say, whereas America was at one a time a dynamic, growing "emerging" market which attracted immigrants from all over the world, especially Europeans seeking to escape either the pre-20th century tyranny of aristocracy or the 20th century tyranny of communism/fascism, now, America resembles the bloated, lethargic bureacratic stagnation of Europe while Asia (China mostly) runs with the torch of the capitalist spirit.

Am I right? Why is this happening? How do we get America back to the 19th century pioneer spirit of individualism and liberty?

Doug Reich said...

Oh, let me underscore a point I just hinted at. European immigrants escaped Europe to come here! Europe has wrought absolute devastation of itself. Consider World I and II, the horrors of Nazi Germany and Communist Russia. Before that, the endless civil and regional bloodbaths, the ethnic genocides, the tyranny of aristocracy and the Papacy, etc.

Yet, we import their ideas on philosophy and political economy!?

Realist Theorist said...

Doug,

Too many Americans fail to see the historical connection between America's relative lack of statism and her relative material success. At least, they do not see it clearly enough.

At bottom, they accept altruism. That is their moral motivation. Add to this the idea that freedom is not what made the U.S. great, and you have people thinking that just a little more statism can be practical.

Beth said...

Here's my wish list....but I am up for anything you choose.
1) Economy and the Fed
2)Economic book reviews

Welcome back!

Burgess Laughlin said...

A note on prioritizing: My experience and observation is that prioritizing is usually straight-forward when one has defined one's hierarchy of purposes, including the purpose that sets the immediate context for the items to be prioritized.

If the list were mine, I would review my purposes, particularly:

1. What is my purpose here.
2. How does my purpose here connect up to my central purpose in life (or other highest purpose)?

(I have been thinking about this approach recently as part of trying where to decide live in the next stage of my life.)

Whatever you decide to write about next, I am looking forward to reading it!

Doug Reich said...

Thanks everyone.

I don't know what the hell I'm going to do...

Allen said...

I'd vote for the last 2.

Sandi Trixx said...

I hope you'll expound on one of my favorite topics - fractional reserve banking.

Jason said...

I vote for The Europeanification of America: Why Are Americans taken in by European Intellectuals?

The idea that productive work is not the central value in life, but rather is inherently miserable and solely a means to the "real" value in life, seems to be central to the culture of Europe. Europeans put anything other than work as their central value in life--i.e. travel and vacation, being with family and friends, watching sports (think of the constant and violent soccer riots) and all other recreation, etc. I can see this attitude creeping into America, but it's pervasive and pretty explicit in Europe. I wonder how European intellectuals are responsible for this malevolent and false view of the role of productive work in life.

Dean Kriegel said...

I can't bear the guilt of being responsible for making you feel bad, so here's my top two:

-The Europeanification of America: Why Are American's taken in by European Intellectuals?

-Discussion of Daniel Gilbert's series on PBS "This Emotional Life" (and his book "Stumbling on Happiness")

STG said...

I find the "European intellectuals" topic the most interesting.

I would ask whether the issue is that Americans have been taken in by European intellectuals, or whether they have never really embraced their own intellectuals.

And I would point out that European intellectuals have been prominent in intellectual circles, not for the last hundred or two hundred years, but for the last 1500 years, at least. Only to say that the European point of view has long been accepted dogma in certain hoity-toity circles---not that it is acceptable or good.

There is a book called The Black Continent that touches on points made in this thread with regard to Europe's bloody history.

Not enough emphasis has been given, in current public discussion, to the difference between American values and "Western values." Notoriously in the context of naming and fighting Islam as an enemy, the counterpoise is almost always "Western values," not American values. This is wrong and dangerous.

As an important American instance of the matter under discussion, how and why did the state of Virginia--or at least the foremost ideas by which it governed itself--change from what it was in 1700 or 1770, to what it was in 1850 or 1910 (or 1950)?

Kevin said...

I'm not a big FRB fan (nor am I a gold fan) so I'd be interested in your take on that.

Doug Reich said...

Thanks to all for commenting. It gave me some great ideas!

Zip said...

I'd like to see the discussion of the Cato Articles.