Nihilism Gets a Bad Wrap:
Cool, I always thought that more programmers should be interested in philosophy, but here I am discovering that there are actually many of us...
@borko Thanks! The current philosophy section on BattlePenguin use to be a separate site I started on spirituality (see the previous post I have up).
My interest in philosophy recently has come from odd places, the Drunk Philosophy meetup when I lived in Seattle, Wisecrack videos (philosophy in pop culture), Žižek's debate with Peterson & podcasts like Owls at Dawn (which I found via Wisecrack) The only stuff I've really read are Camus, Oliver Burkeman's The Antidote, and lots of random papers.
Don't say "the only", reading a philosophical work and understanding it is a big deal.
Otherwise, my case with philosophy is similar, the things that got me into it were the podcast 'Partially-examined life" and the Existential Comics (the author of which is also a programmer).
I also have a blog: http://boris-marinov.github.io/blog/
Who do you think won the Zizek - Peterson debate?
@borko Cool. I read your post on the novel; look forward to reading more.
For the debate, I don't think anyone "won." They both gained insights from each other. I don't think Zizek was aware of the neo-Marxist movements in current academia in North America and I think Peterson learned how far removed those ideas were from Zizek's idea of Marxism. I think they both made very good points. I like Peterson's argument of what separates the proletariat/bourgeois; What happens if the hierarchy flips?
@djsumdog His argument is good, but contains a hidden assumption which is, we may say, at the core of the left-right debate - that the establishment of a hierarchy is inevitable.
The thing with that assumption, though, is that there is nothing much to say about it, you either believe in it or you don't ;)
@borko Can you show a counter-example? I realize it's empirical, but things tend to follow the Orwellian Animal Farm model. The revolution in Animal Farm was good; things were better for all animals at first. But over time, the pigs convinced everyone else they should guide things. I feel like real communism works in only very small groups (like the first church in the Christian Book of Acts), but in every case, someone(s) convinces others to follow them as leaders.
@borko I would be genuinely curious to see examples of larg(er) scale communal societies with flat or near flat hierarchies that don't turn into cults, and how that would be possible and how it works.
You can have the same thing under capitalism though (and you largely do, for example in the US where policies are dictated by the ruling class). In general, Animal Farm is a critic of authoritarian states, not of socialism. And I don't agree that socialism is related to authoritarian states - would you say that Donald Trump is socialist, for example?
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