Fascinating tumblr arguments

I try to keep track of as much of the left as I can. One part of the left that I enjoy observing — although have never really found myself able to engage with — is the social justice tumblr set. Broadly identitarian feminist in its basic orientation, this set has sprawled out a whole… Continue reading Fascinating tumblr arguments

Austerity for the gander

JW Mason relays a pathetic argument for austerity out in the Financial Times. The basic thrust of the argument, as Mason’s title mockingly summarizes, is that austerity is good for the soul. Austerity, which here just means having less, will lead to better health by limiting food access. It will promote “common purpose and comradeship.”… Continue reading Austerity for the gander

How to argue for public goods

Note: I use “public goods” in a general sense here as goods provided by the public, whether non-excludable or not. Arguments about public goods tend to be very sloppy. Advocates for such goods often conflate distributive issues with public provisioning issues, even though the two are conceptually distinct. This is partly what I was getting… Continue reading How to argue for public goods

Fun 1950s capitalist propaganda

The above video is one you see excerpted quite a bit in films and television when points about capitalism or the American economic system are being made. It is a fascinating film on many fronts, but two stand out for me. First, bits of it are completely vacuous. It is one thing to provide arguments… Continue reading Fun 1950s capitalist propaganda

Instead, how about you rely on charity to achieve your distributive goals?

Anyone residing on the left has heard it many times before. We shouldn’t reform our distributive institutions to achieve our distributive goals; instead, we should keep the present distributive institutions in place and try through individual charity to achieve what we want. That is, don’t tax the rich and feed the poor. Let the rich… Continue reading Instead, how about you rely on charity to achieve your distributive goals?