In yesterday’s posting we mentioned an essay by G. K. Chesterton from an obscure collection published in 1934 that started us on the train of thought that led to this brief series. In the essay, “On Facing Facts,” Chesterton opined that Englishmen of his day tended to live a little too much in the far-distant past, and not enough in the more recent past.
The Just Third Way
A Blog of the Global Justice Movement
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
In the posting of Monday of this week, we mentioned that how we meet our duties to our fellow man is irrelevant as long as the means is ethical and we get the job done. In yesterday’s posting (Tuesday’s, if you’re keeping track), we noted that there is a slight variation on that which ends up being its exact opposite: the means is irrelevant as long as we get what we want.
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Francis Bacon began his essay “On Truth” with, “What is truth? said jesting Pilate, and would not stay for an answer.” An interesting opening, but it assumes that Pilate was joking, when it is evident that he was not. He was simply stating what, for him, was a fact: that truth was of no relevance to what concerned him the most.
Monday, March 3, 2014
As we saw in the previous posting in this series, the point of Catholic or any other religion’s social teaching is not to take care of people directly, except in extreme cases. The same goes for what the State is supposed to be doing.
Friday, February 28, 2014
Here’s how you, too, can make a fortune by speculating in something that doesn’t exist. First, invent a virtual (fictional) commodity that can be generated by a computer program. Next, come up with a snappy name for it, oh, say, a “Wit-coin.”
Thursday, February 27, 2014
|A State Church|
Many people assume that the roles of Church and State can be summed up very easily: meet people’s material needs. Of course, if that orientation is correct, then either organized religion or government is redundant. In the interests of efficiency, organized religion should take over government, or government should take over organized religion, whichever is in the best interests of the common good, or is consistent with the will of the people. And, since the State has a monopoly on the instruments of coercion, you know who is going to win.
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
In yesterday’s posting we saw that the United States could easily go the way of ancient Rome. No, really. If we really understand that Rome didn’t really “fall,” but slowly decayed and transformed into the Medieval world as conventional government spent itself into oblivion trying to meet every need, and then the modern world (where governments are spending themselves into bankruptcy trying to meet every need), it becomes comprehensible.
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
One of the most serious signs of decay of the more or less cohesive classical Roman Empire and its transformation into the more inchoate “Christendom” of the Middle Ages composed of increasingly nationalistic groups was the takeover of State functions by private individuals. Mostly this was the defense of the Empire, and the responsibility for raising and equipping troops (hence the rise of feudalism), but it included maintenance of infrastructure as well. This turned the rich into the real rulers, an aristocracy, as distinct from the nominal rulers, the emperor (when there was one), and the local senate.
Monday, February 24, 2014
Many people are unaware that Woodrow Wilson was a disciple of Walter Bagehot, who derived his theories in part from Thomas Hobbes, the totalitarian political philosopher. Not surprisingly, then, Wilson was an elitist who had a deep suspicion and mistrust of ordinary people, as well as those he seemed to view as demagogues, such as William Jennings Bryan and Theodore Roosevelt. Bryan was someone to be used to counter Roosevelt, a sort of a backfire, or (perhaps more consistent with Wilson’s attitude) a thief to catch a thief.Read more Entry>>
Friday, February 21, 2014
Although the booming stock market has convinced many people that economic recovery is well in hand and progressing more or less on schedule, there are signs of serious problems remaining. Chief among these is the fact that, while the stock market has recovered and more, reaching its highest level ever, there don’t seem to be too many actual people benefiting from this so-called “recovery.”
Thursday, February 20, 2014
Georgist “legend” today has it that James Cardinal Gibbons (1834-1921), “quasi-primate” of the United States, did not put Progress and Poverty (1879) by agrarian socialist Henry George (1839-1897) on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (“List of Prohibited Books”) because the Catholic Church found nothing wrong with George’s theory that individual people cannot own land.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Ultimately, the goal of the Just Third Way (in the short term) is to surface a world leader and present him or her with a possible framework for solving the problems world leaders are faced with, and for that leader to communicate to the world that the principles of economic justice as presented by Louis Kelso and Mortimer Adler, and refined by CESJ.
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Yesterday’s Washington Post (02/17/14) carried two columns related to the growing economic inequities. From Robert Samuelson there was “Economists in the Dark.” From Lawrence Summers there was “How to Curb Inequality.” Both were on page A19.
Monday, February 17, 2014
A lot of people have a lot of problems with the word “absolute.” They absolutely refuse to listen to anything that implies there might be such things as absolutes, moral or otherwise. “There are no absolutes!” they trumpet . . . to which the obvious response is, “Are you absolutely sure of that?”