Friday, September 03, 2021

Dashed Off XIX

 Aggressive engagement in politics either subserves negotiation or it is corrupt.

Every state implies at least a fragmentary account of human dignity.

Failure is just the state of learning enough to succeed.

the extremely common phenomenon, despite diversity across cultures, of treating marriage as sacred or religious -- thus either its nature, or its origin, or both, is suggestive of the divine

the holy as the oath-protected

We need not only to read but also to hear Scripture, for we do not always receive in the same way by reading as we do by hearing.

liberty of school
(1) right of parents and church to establish their own means of education, including schools and similar institutions;
(2) provision of ways in which credentials of such schools may be certified equivalent to schools and institutions of the state;
(3) just distribution of educational subsidies.

Respect for the dignity of the person requires respect for the dignity of the family or household.

Advertisement and polling create an artificial public opinion, one whose connection to real opinions of the public may become very loose.

Extensions can only be identified intensionally.

the Agrippan taxonomy of skeptical arguments: (1) disagreement (2) infinite regress (3) relativity (4) mere assumption (5) circularity

The subjective self-evidence of modern philosophy (e.g., Cartesian clear and distinct perception) is aesthetic; it identifies a form of beauty which is (as Plato says, Phaedrus 250d) the most clearly seen and most lovely of them all.

jussive, hortative, optative good

'Banana republic' was coined by O. Henry, Cabbages and Kings.

"To feel beauty is a better thing than to understand how we come to feel it." Santayana

wonder as openness to being

"Without careful investigation of the nature of deity, you cannot know that of man; just as you cannot manage civic affairs successfully without some knowledge of the wider world-society of men." Minucius Felix

the connection between nostalgia and friendship

relevance, thoroughness, strength, and balance of argument

parity argument as argument squared; parity of parity arguments as argument cubed; etc.
-- one could do this with a fortiori, as well

creation as protosemiosis
semiosis as having creation and/or subcreation as preconditions
the creation as sign of God
primary and secondary semiosis

Catholic : Church as correspondence network :: Apostolic : Church as hierarchy

Christ's Ascension -> Christ as King of Angels
(cp. Mary's Assumption -> Mary as Queen of Angels)

frameworks for virtue, honor, profit, and freedom

Each argument for the existence of God suggests a particular kind of apologetics.

Sign, object, and interpretant may be more or less tightly unified.

presential self-knowledge as pre-semiotic (on which point it differs from reflective introspection, which is semiotic)

using phantasms as indexical signs, using phantasms as iconic signs, using phantasms as symbolic signs

phantasm as
rhemic iconic qualisign -- as felt content
rhemic iconic sinsign -- as model
rhemic indexical sinsign -- as felt effect
dicentic indexical sinsign -- as effected by world
rhemic iconic legisign -- as model-type, model-family
rhemic indexical legisign -- as imaginative quasi-gesture at something
dicentic indexical legisign -- as articulated quasi-gesture capturing relations
rhemic symbolic legisign, dicentic symbolic legisign, delomic symbolic legisign -- as linguistic

intellect as immediate, dynamic, or final interpretant

Voting should be seen less as a purely additive matter and more as a political-temperature-taking, complicated by density.

hagiography as building a vocabulary for devotion

To hope is to dwell on that wherein one does not yet dwell.

sacra doctrina as the seed of sacra patiens

'we must often remain silent / we lack a sacred language -- hearts beat / but speech does not emerge'

language as orientation vs language as equipment

the burning bush unburned as symbol of the unmoved mover

The proper ultimate end of the family, like the proper ultimate end of the individual person, is the beatific vision.

legal justice : civil society :: moral justice : human society
-- but of course, the sense of 'society' here is analogical, not univocal

rights of the family
(1) to what is required for procreation
(2) to what is required for education of children
(3) to what is required for mutual aid of spouses
(4) to what is required for remedy of concupiscence
(5) to what is required for indissolubility
(6) to what is required for unity
(7) to relative self-governance

Every legitimate transfer of property presupposes some prior common good.

Property exists to subserve life and virtue.

just strikes and just war criteria

the sola fide view of self-esteem

If you exhaust people with your demands for justice, they will in defense begin embracing injustice.

consequentialism + partisan politics -> reinterpretation of opponents as victimizers
-- consequentialist justification for partisan positions in a manner usable in practical politics requirs simplification; one simplifies consequentialist discourse by focusing on grave harms and on impediments to massive benefits

retorsion-testing of arguments

possible results of retorsion test
(1) self-defeat
(2) self-conformity
(3) neutrality -- requires assessment in combination with additional assumptions

Love of money can corrupt anything because it easily inverts ends and means.

It is better to have teaching historians than history teachers.

rhetoric & the art of argument abbreviation

A battle by its nature involves continually deteriorating conditions for all parties.

Best not to boast of your martyrdom before you've even faced the lions.

A successful code of professional ethics will necessarily be fairly forgiving.

hierarchy as structured reflection of light

People only very rarely steal from desire of money/possessions alone. That is a reason to be greedy, but theft requires crossing a boundary. Some cross that boundary due to some obsessive craving for some particular kind of thing; some for the thrill of transgression; but most from a will to take advantage of someone, which might result from any number of motives -- envy, resentment, anger, contempt, or anything else that might lead us to take advantage of another.

Irrational decisions are, in general, defectively reasoned, not reasonless.

defective causes and irrationality
(1) prejudicial assumptions
(2) fallacious habits
(3) passional motives distorting means and ends
(4) biological failure (e.g., brain disorder)
(5) external disruption (e.g., drugs)

causes of irrationality
(1) external
(2) internal
-- -- (a) physical
-- -- (b) mental
-- -- -- -- (i) occasional
-- -- -- -- (ii) enduring
-- -- -- -- -- -- (a) bad assumption/principle
-- -- -- -- -- -- (b) bad reasoning

assets & liabilities analysis of philosophical positions, systems, etc.
(Every position includes resources for solving problems and raises questions and problems that require resources from outside.)

"Every nation should think only of its own duty, not paying any attention to other peoples, and not demanding or expecting anything of them. It is not in our power to make others fulfill their duty, but we can and must fulfill our own." Soloviev

Encouraging sex and discouraging having children is not a sustainable policy under any conditions.

Philosophy by its nature posits the falsehood of consequentialism. 

The problem with judicial review is primarily the lack of adequate constraint on erroneous tribunal.

What would normally be venial sin becomes mortal sin when
(1) subordinated to a mortally sinful end; or
(2) pursued in such a way  that one would commit mortal sin for it; or
(3) done in contempt of precept as precept; or
(4) done in a manner actively scandalous; or
(5) done so as to disregard known danger of mortal sin, without just cause

the n-evidence problem for Bayesianism

substantive inexhaustibility of inquiry --> existence of God as infinite intelligible

Protesting is a collapse of politics; it is a retreat, a local failure to advance. Like a retreat, it can have strategic purpose, but only within a broader plan.

evening and morning knowledge with respect to moral truths

Any serious causal modeling requires making judgments about what is important, what is essential or nonessential, etc. These are ultimately based on assessments of final causes.

consequentialist, deontological, and virtue-ethical accounts of freedom

wars // industrial accidents

emergency parasociality vs infrastructural parasociality

apparent miracles and the intersection of the sense of novelty and the sense of the sublime
novelties that open up on infinities

the unintelligible foreign is common trope in horror, but rare elsewhere, although you do find it in comedy (e.g., Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy)

the bene esse of a republic requires
(1) respect for conscientiousness
(2) vigilance
(3) neighborliness
(4) civic pride

"In love of neighbor, love of God is included, just like a cause in its effect." Aquinas

torque, torsion, torture, tortuous, torturous

the juridicality of communication (obvious in privileged communications, shared secrets, private conversations)

translation as an act of linguistic hospitality (Ricoeur, Pope Francis)

We don't so much act on desire as within desire.

You can only vote for that which you can articulate.

modes of failure of argument
(1) unexcluded alternate interpretation of premise-evidence
(2) failure to clarify dispute
(3) arbitrary assumption
(4) circularity
(5) infinition (infinite deferral)

The typeface 'Perpetua' is named after St. Perpetua.

Every concept of rationality requires a concept of perversity.

dignitates (axioms), first principles, immediate propositions, common notions

rights as endowed

Persons personify; the capacity for a natural person to 'spin off' multiple moral, juridical, etc., persons is inherent in what it is to be a person.

Political violence does not just harm those at whom it is directed but the whole polity.

Kantian ethics arguably makes more sense if you understand it as capturing the ethics of the *juridical* person.

a faith that will not fail, a hope that will not falter, a love that will not die

Progressivism has a tendency toward treating everything, even fundamental things, as a means; conservatism toward treating anything (even things that have value almost entirely as means) as an end.

Liberalism all too often prepares the way for totalitarianism by tearing down the bulkheads that normally make totalitarianism impossible, and then not replacing them with anything.

Voltaire's Principle: God as bulwark against tyranny, a principle of civil theology

moral order as a precondition for friendship between states

People use politics as a substitute for doing good to those around them, and this is corrupting.

the imp of the perverse

baptism as the pool of truth

trance shamanism, ritual shamanism, omen shamanism

Collective ownership is always only a legal fiction.

ownership vs. ownership-on-behalf-of

All scarcity is in part a scarcity of time.

rosary as catechesis

Beauty is what ties us to things.

Every salience is a form of goodness for something.

Either there is a just Governor of the World, or all is just an imposition of power.

difficulty vs hassle
-- Notice that people will often take a harder route to avoid one with more hassle, at least up to a point

Much of propaganda consists of planting a flag on something.

Ethical views inevitably degenerate into collections of wax-nose slogans.

cogency as argumentative aptitude for persuasion
-- structural (logos), relative to passions (pathos), relative to character of one putting it forward (ethos)

Transience is always against a background of endurance; endurance is either per accidens or per se.

conversive vs aversive passions

possible positions on hell
(1) hell is incoherent
(2) hell does not exist due to some defect/wrongness
(3) impeded hell: hell is only a hypothetical, it could exist, but it is prevented
(4) hell exists

the magisterial, ministerial, and regal aspects of motherhood

levels of mechanism
(1) agglomeration (Democritean)
(2) collision (Cartesian)
(3) attraction and repulsion
(4) computation

mechanisms vs mathematicisms

Seek virtue first and maximizing happiness will be given unto you.

Treating humanity with dignity requires treating the human race as a whole with dignity.

scientism as a usury of scientific authority

To make a hypothesis always presupposes something to make a hypothesis about.

"Satan, trying to make a new start and gain new triumphs, borrows the language of victims." Girard

Men have a tendency to confuse pusillanimity with niceness or tolerance.

coexistence, convivium, co-cogitation

The distinction between rational and irrational inference presupposes alternative possibilities and free decision among them.

metaphor, conceit, myth