All posts in category Politics

Things Are Not OK

Once upon a time I was talking to an old German man. “The government is blaming foreigners for everything,” he told me. “All these politicians, they’re completely corrupt! Taking money from corporations, doing whatever they’re told by the rich. They don’t care about ordinary people anymore. They don’t care about jobs or healthcare. They just […]

On Punching Nazis

There’s been a lot of debate about the use of violence to oppose various manifestations of the far right lately. Both sides of the argument are frequently indignant. How can it be OK to punch anyone? How can it not be OK to punch a Nazi? What’s missing from most of these debates, I think, […]

We Are Not A Virus

In recent decades, there has been a growing tendency in the politics and philosophy of ecology that can only be described as anti-humanist. While this doesn’t constitute a coherent movement as such, there are several ideological assertions that crop up repeatedly across the entire spectrum of anti-humanist thought. The anti-humanist argument tends to include the […]

Human Nature

We can’t create a better economic system. We can’t beat cancer. We can’t achieve interstellar travel. We can’t overthrow the Czar. We can’t beat the plague. We can’t create machines that fly. We can’t overthrow the kings. We can’t prevent the infants from dying. We can’t cross the oceans. We can’t work together with the […]

Voting, Democracy, and the People

Whenever another election nears, the world fills up with paeans to the power of voting and doom-filled laments about people failing to do their democratic duty. Whenever someone suggests that people should actively avoid voting, no matter how they arrived at this conclusion, they are immediately hit by an immense amount of outrage, usually expressed […]

An Authentic Opinion

In online debates, the idea will frequently show up that people who don’t belong to a particular (ethnic, sexual, cultural) group are not only ethically wrong to express an opinion on that group’s political situation, but are in fact incapable of doing so accurately due to being somehow essentially different from people belonging to that […]

Error and Sin

It is not because angels are holier than men or devils that makes them angels, but because they do not expect holiness from one another, but from God alone. – William Blake One of the major issues any social group has to figure out how to deal with is disagreement. Disagreement is inevitable, a natural […]

Austerity Ecology

I’ve been struggling to articulate just why this book is so tremendously important – not because it’s hard to talk about, but because it’s just so full of utterly vital ideas and arguments. I want to see this book in every library and on every political reading list. If you have even the slightest interest […]

Cancer and Capitalism

Lately, as friends, relatives, and celebrities have had encounters with cancer, I have spoken out several times about how I think the cause of this suffering and death is, in many ways, systemic. I’ve had a variety of responses to this that I find irritating: “You’re politicizing a tragedy!” “It’s just how it is.” “You’re […]

What Europe means for SYRIZA

Watching last week’s Eurogroup meeting has been fascinating. With SYRIZA replacing the servile ND/PASOK governments, which consented to every measure without debate, the fundamental character of the EU was revealed: it is an organization controlled by the German capitalist classes, steeped in an ideology of racism and nationalist contempt, and aimed purely and solely at […]