Thomistic Institute, Summer 2021

After being cancelled last year, the Thomistic Institute is hosting its third philosophy and natural science symposium, entitled “Chance and Indeterminacy in the Natural World.” Please see the link for more information or to register, and please forward it to interested philosophy and natural science graduate students!

Coronalogic

WikiMedia Commons CC (credit) A recent study of mask effectiveness is hailed by two Oxford professors of evidence-based medicine in the following terms: Yesterday marked the publication of a long-delayed trial in Denmark which hopes to answer that very question. The ‘Danmask-19 trial’ was conducted in the spring with over 3,000 participants, when the public were not … Continue reading Coronalogic

On health as a common good

It seems that health is not a common good, because health characterizes an individual. In scholastic terms, it is a qualitative accident of a living substance, an organism. Thus: An individual’s life and health are particular goods, not common goods. It is an obvious metaphysical truth that my health and my life can only be … Continue reading On health as a common good

Silencing the bells of Nagasaki

Funeral Mass near the ruins of the Urakami Cathedral, held on November 23, 1945, for the victims of the atomic bomb. (WikiMedia) Seventy-five years ago today, the USAAF B-29 Bockscar dropped one of the last bombs of the Second World War in the Urakami valley, on the industrial port city of Nagasaki, Japan. Tens of … Continue reading Silencing the bells of Nagasaki

Trying to take the good out of things

Vasily Perov, The Drowned (1867; WikiMedia) In a recent post at The Josias, “The New Natural Law Theory as the Source of Bostock’s Error,” James Berquist analyzes a particular case of the general mistake made by the “new” natural law theory. The core of his philosophical criticism of the jurisprudence of Bostock lies in the … Continue reading Trying to take the good out of things

The insubordination of economics

Caravaggio, Christ Driving the Money-Changers from the Temple (1610; WikiMedia) Paul Oslington’s essay—“Why are Philosophers and Theologians so Hostile to Economics?”—provides a case study of the academic phenomenon of failure to obtain joinder of issue. The essay is an underwhelming and confused mix of agreement and critique. My interest was drawn to reading it through … Continue reading The insubordination of economics

At the Heart of Being

Over at Thomistica.net, one can find my review-essay of Dr. John F. X. Knasas’s recent book, Thomistic Existentialism and Cosmological Reasoning. From the introduction: In the following review-essay, I explore in some detail Knasas’s argumentation and some of its consequences. First, I will look at some of the background to the issues regarding the contemporary … Continue reading At the Heart of Being

The Question of Catholic Integralism: An Internet Genealogy

[N.b.: Updated, 2020 May 31: Future posts about integralism are in the works, so I hope this will be my last update to this one. I’ve added a Public Discourse essay that was overlooked by the first version.] The purpose of this post is to recall the contours of the debate about Catholic integralism that … Continue reading The Question of Catholic Integralism: An Internet Genealogy

Shorting the Market on the Common Good

Over at Public Discourse, an essay by Joseph E. Capizzi and V. Bradley Lewis—entitled “Bullish on the Common Good?”—attempts to put recent conservative discussion about “the common good” in a more realistic and pragmatic light. They refer to C. C. Pecknold’s First Things essay, “False Notions of the Common Good” as well as two other … Continue reading Shorting the Market on the Common Good

The “Perfect” System Would Eliminate Being Human

A recent case heard by the Supreme Court of the Netherlands found that "a doctor had not acted improperly when he euthanized a 74-year-old woman with advanced dementia, even though the woman had to be repeatedly sedated and physically restrained during the procedure." The woman had previously set out in her advanced directives a request … Continue reading The “Perfect” System Would Eliminate Being Human