The Measure of A Philosopher: Beneficially Novel, Good, Bad(wrong), And Dangerous

(Discussion on Bleeding Heart Libertarians: The Measure of an Economist or a Philosopher)


[A] good economists provides us with insights into the state of affairs we live in. A novel economists provides us with new general rules (a theory). A good philosopher explains or re-explains the changes in the world to us in current language. A novel philosopher provides us with a new general rule (a theory).

It is not better to be good or novel. It is most important that one not be dangerous.

Freud, Marx and Cantor reintroduced mysticism in the form of obscurantism. Russell compounded that new mysticism. The postmoderns have been terribly damaging to institutions, morality and language. Rothbard did more damage than good. Most of his history is quite good. His ethics were a catastrophe and set us back by decades. A disaster I have been struggling to correct.

So one can be novel, one can be good, one can be wrong and one can be destructive. I don’t care much about the first three. The fourth quadrant is what I worry about most. Because bad and dangerous philosophy turns out to spread far faster than good and beneficially novel philosophy. Just like bad news spreads faster than good.

Curt Doolittle
The Propertarian Institute.

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