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You Will Never Be #MAGA Enough

Fox News Channel has been cancelled. It is pretty obvious that Fox News has done more to boost Donald Trump and carry water for him than any other institution. But that isn’t enough to save them. Only the most unblinkingly slavish devotion, with never a hint of even accidental criticism, will do. And so the […]

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Donald Trump Shoots 100,000 People on Fifth Avenue

No, Donald Trump didn’t literally shoot anybody, nor did he do it on Fifth Avenue. But soon more than 100,000 Americans will be dead from COVID-19, and making good on his boast that he could get away with murder in broad daylight, his supporters are working their way toward accepting and excusing this disastrous outcome. […]

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Butterfield Epidemiology

We all knew this was going to happen. At the very beginning of our vast national social-distancing experiment, we said that we would know it was working if it all seemed like an overreaction. This is the great paradox of any preventive measure. If it works, it prevents the danger that makes it necessary—which, in […]

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Time for the “Shoe-Leather Epidemiologists”

Social distancing has worked—so far. We are past the peak in deaths from COVID-19, both nationally and in most states, though we’ve still got a few weeks before we go down the other side of the curve. It’s natural for people to be restless and to be eager for re-opening. But the question isn’t “Should […]

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The Esthetics of the Coronavirus Pandemic

I recently completed a long piece looking at the coronavirus pandemic from a philosophical perspective, starting with metaphysics and going through epistemology, ethics, and politics. That leaves us with one more major branch of philosophy: esthetics. So what are the esthetics of the coronavirus pandemic? First, we have to define what that question means. Are […]

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The Philosophy of the Coronavirus Pandemic

Published April 7 through April 16. Part 1: The Metaphysics of Abnormal Life Part of the response to the coronavirus pandemic, like the response to everything else, has been to draft it as another player in our normal, everyday political battles. So we’ve seen the claim that “there are no libertarians in a pandemic,” the […]

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WTF Happened to The Federalist?

Coronavirus Truthers are now a thing, and I regret to inform you that a publication I used to work for has taken the lead in spinning crazy Infowars-style conspiracy theories about how the virus is all being hyped up by the Deep State. Ben Domenech, publisher of The Federalist, recently took to Twitter to explain […]

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Are We All Paul Krugman Now?

Cast your mind back to the heady days of the giant Obama-era “stimulus package” following the financial crisis of 2008. New York Times columnist Paul Krugman—the great advocate of ultra-Keynesian big-government spending—assured us that the only problem with the nearly trillion dollars of pork-barrel spending was that it wasn’t big enough. What we really needed […]

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Libertarians in a Pandemic

In a moment of crisis, people like to assert a sense of control, no matter how illusory, by reverting to well-worn habits. In the case of COVID-19, that means using it as a vessel for whatever political hobbyhorses they had before the pandemic. So it’s no surprise to see the headline, “There Are No Libertarians […]

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How to Work from Home As If You Actually Want to Enjoy It

Now that everyone is stuck at home during the Time of Coronavirus, you may be getting a lot of advice on how to telecommute. It usually runs somewhere along these lines: make a separate and closed-off space just for work, keep a regular 9-to-5 work schedule, and get dressed and ready in the morning the […]

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