Allen Paltrow

About Me – All content is © Creative Commons

Jul 28

Jul 23



Jul 20

Jul 19

Open-Government activist Beth Noveck on crowd-sourced inspections

"The olive oil may be honest, but the olive oil you’re eating is made out of cat"

Great conversation, especially around minute 40. 


Lessig Against Transparency

A piece from 2009 in which Lessig considers how government transparency initiatives occasionally increase misunderstandings of the provided data and produce unintended civic consequences. 

Worth a read


Jul 15

Benkler on Wikileaks

Just read Yochai Benkler’s widely cited paper (pdf) on the legal implications of Wikileaks – includes a scathing analysis of NYT’s Bill Keller’s attempts to tarnish Wikileaks’ journalistic status, which indirectly legitimized attempts at government censorship that fly directly against  first amendment doctrine, as in the Pentagon Papers case. 

Best academic paper I’ve read this year, reads like a New Yorker article – highly recommended. 


Mar 10

Nehamas on Norris

"What follows from the ‘historicism’ of Rorty and Gadamer is that we must do more history." (LRB)


Dec 19

Rorty Reviews Williams

"(My preference for the second half of the book may, of course, be due to the fact that it is only in the first half that my own oxen are gored.)"

‘Cultural relativism’ is largely an imaginary bugbear, but to the extent that it actually exists it …  should be resisted. Even if we shall never succeed in seeing ourselves as metaphysicians and epistemologists have hoped to see us, we nevertheless have no reason to doubt that the West is best at acquiring truth. That Eurocentric claim of superiority cannot, pragmatists believe, be defended by non-circular arguments before a tribunal of ahistorical reason, but is none the worse for that.”

Rorty reviews Bernard Williams, discussing the approaches of Pragmatism and Analytic Philosophy in addressing why we ought seek truth, and to what degree we should trust our methods of inquiry as independent of our viewpoint. 


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