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Richard Epstein on Income Inequality

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Income and wealth inequality is a hot topic in political and economic conversations today. Just recently Thomas Piketty, an economist at the Paris School of Economics, came out with a book, Capital in the Twenty-First Centurywhich has as its main thesis that capitalism as an economic system naturally tends toward extreme income inequality, that, if not checked, will result is catastrophic social consequences. He proposes a world-wide global progressive tax that would levy higher taxes on the rich in order to subsidize the poor. The belief that income inequality is a major problem in society is ubiquitous and ever-increasing. Read the rest of this entry

The Love of Money and the Root of Money

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Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. (ESV)

A Basic Confusion

The above verses are from 1 Tim. 6:6-10. Many people who have read this passage have come away convinced that money is evil and that being rich is wrong. Who would want to fall into such temptation and risk so much? Who wants to face ruin and destruction? Yikes! It’s probably best to just stay away from money altogether, right? Well, no of course not. If we read Paul carefully, we note that he says that the love of money is the root all kinds of evil, not money qua money (and the desire to be rich is wrong, not simply being rich). Hmm, this makes things more complicated doesn’t it? Perhaps money isn’t intrinsically wrong, but we definitely shouldn’t love it. But just what is money anyway and why do we need it? If the love of money is so risky, wouldn’t it be better just to do away with money altogether? Is this possible?

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A Moral Reductio Argument Against Naturalism

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Yesterday while I was making lunch I listened to the latest Reasonable Faith podcast, called “The Real Consequences of Atheism.” One thing that was said got me thinking and it was about how atheists explain the tension between the fact that, on the one hand, naturalism excludes any kind of objective and universal basis for morality, but on the other hand, all humans live as if there are objective moral values and duties that are binding on all people. As of right now, the reason I’ve read and heard given to explain this tension is that humans have developed the (false) belief in objective morality in order to function, even though it’s not really true. So, going off this, I jotted down this argument that attempts to reduce such reasoning to absurdity. Read the rest of this entry

Random Thoughts: St. Augustine, Leadership, & Discrimination

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Sometimes I have random thoughts that I want to write down and develop a little bit, but they aren’t substantial enough to expand them into their own respective posts. So instead I’ve decided to put them together into one post. These do not necessarily relate to each other (unless somehow you, the reader, see some fantastical connection that I don’t). It’s possible that cognitively processing these little issues will help me sort them out so that I can develop them into more substantial articles in the future. Your thoughts or comments are welcome. Enjoy! Read the rest of this entry

What is Truth?

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What is truth?

TruthTruth is a property that adheres to a proposition (the content of a sentence) if and only if the proposition corresponds to reality as it actually is. Propositions, as truth bearers, can be either true or false but they are not facts. Facts are neither true nor false; they just are. Facts are the standards by which the veracity of propositions are adjudicated. Nor are propositions sentences, which one philosopher defines as “a linguistic object consisting in a sense perceptible string of markings formed according to a culturally arbitrary set of syntactical rules, a grammatically well-formed string of spoken or written scratchings/sounds.” [1] Sentences would not be possible without propositions, but the two should not be conflated. Read the rest of this entry

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