The Properties of Property and the Reality of Reality

I was talking yesterday to a friend about my concerns regarding assertions of absolute private “property rights” over stuff taken out of the public domain. My friend, an architect by training, is vehemently opposed to anything that remotely resembles a restraint on commerce and wealth accumulation. She describes herself as “nearly objectivist.” She says she…

A New Uncertainty Principle: Some Uncertainty In Your Principles Is Good

The world is on the brink of economic – and perhaps ecological – disaster. Instead of looking at the possibilities with some humility, there are people, with real power, raring to push their long-beloved ideologies harder than ever.I want to make a humble plea: stop being so certain about everything. About ten years ago I…

Misplaced Demands: The Bridge Loan and Wage Cuts

Yesterday, I posted an entry questioning whether a bridge loan/ rescue package from the federal taxpayers to the auto industry giants was warranted. Grace from Michigan commented that ordinary people in Michigan, who work for these companies and have essentially been struggling through a recession for several years, really could use a hand. Moreover, she…

Auto-Destruction-Sequence?

It doesn’t matter, ultimately, that the bridge loan failed in the Senate. Looks like the White House will come through for the car makers. But is it a good idea? I know it’s hard to swallow that the finance industry, which caused the economy to crumble while paying its top execs handsomely in the process…

Bailouts and Neo-Feudalism

I know that the failure of the auto-industry bailout will hurt a lot of people. More precisely, it will fail to mitigate (in the short term) the hurt a lot of people will experience as a result of other factors. But can we really save ourselves by simply propping up every company or industry that’s…