Underneath the complex clashes of the cultural war are very interesting conundrums which do not yield to superficial criticism. For example, any cost/benefit analysis used to rationalize real harm supports a dry ‘scientism’ unhooked from morality. From the other side, this same problem arises in most presumptions of primary substantive principles. With this, the cost/benefit analysis isn’t often done. Yet, in the clash between liberal social analysis and absolutist ‘guiding, a priori ordination’ both share a terrific insensitivity to real harm. The idea of Justice was once time-honored; it tends to disappear at both extremes.

I take problems like this to be problems of human sentience. The Sentient Times March issue contains an interview with Paul Krugman, yet another presentation from George Lakoff, and, pertinent to this item, an interview with John Perkins, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.

We’re a long way off from a Buddhist politics.

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