A frustrated philosophy student of my acquaintance asks: "Are Philosophers Giving Up On Reason?" and reviews What Philosophers Know by Gary Gutting. (Short version: not much).
Gutting sets out to show “what philosophers know.” But all that he ends up “showing” is that philosophers have become too afraid of radical skepticism to exercise any skepticism at all, too afraid of having their own false beliefs exposed to expose the false beliefs of others, and too distrustful of their own reason to accept it when it leads them counter to their intuition.
I don't know the book, but I do think philosophy must do a better job if it wants to hold on to students who care about the state of the world.
I don’t understand this post. Are you suggesting that Philosophers are not being “rational” enough or that they are being too “rational?” And is the implication that less “rationalist” and more skeptical philosophers don’t care about the state of the world? And if so how do philosophers like Derrida or Rorty fit into this outline?
Well, I’m not suggesting anything really – I posted this as a pointer to Frustrated’s just-getting-started blog. I am sure he (I happen to know he’s a he) would appreciate and reply to your comment if you post it there.
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Thank you for your spammy spam.
In my opinion, the dissonance comes from not recognizing that philosophy has become a discipline concerned with the history of critical thinking rather than the application of it. One does not employ the tools of skepticism when detailing the history of skepticism. Philosophy departments are archives for thought that occur elsewhere. Criticizing the modern day philosopher’s lack of critical thinking is akin to judging the quality of a weaponry museum based on the military skills of the curator.
I switched from philosophy to economics — not because I thought I had better job prospects, but because the answers were more coherent, interesting, and relevant.
Say: comments are closed on a lot of old posts that I want to comment on. Any chance you’ll open the floor up again?
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The problem is that after a few weeks the spam engines get hold of certain titles and even at this little-trafficked place I spend my time cleaning the spam out. One post with “shoes” in the title gets regular comments about where you can buy shoes at great discounts. But maybe I’ll try it for a while again and see how it goes. I’ll open it up this afternoon and leave it for a week or two.
Case in point.
I wonder why spam posts are always so complimentary of the author. I haven’t tried it (though I would if someone paid me to) but I bet you could get a decent comment spam-catcher simply by looking for initial or early words like “great” and “interesting”.
Have you considered a honeypot? You could make a post that concatenates all nouns that appear in your other posts, and mark anyone who comments on it as a spammer. Even free up the robots.txt blocker and let all the crawlers see it, if you want to be obvious about the honeypot. Then submit your findings to Akismet or … I don’t know whom you submit blacklist requests to.
Well thanks for taking on the extra work. I still can’t write on http://whimsley.typepad.com/whimsley/2007/07/the-limitations.html though. Is it just too old?