Defending the Institutions of Democracy Against the Enemies of Truth 

The bizarre world we currently inhabit—a world about as far removed from “the age of reason” as one could possibly imagine—is a world where “28% of Americans believe that Bill Gates wants to use vaccines to implant microchips in people,” according to a recent YouGov poll. And as if that weren’t cause for concern enough, roughly the same percentage of Americans (26%) believe that the sun revolves around the earth, and not the other way around, according to a 2012 National Science Foundation survey.

Continue reading “Defending the Institutions of Democracy Against the Enemies of Truth “

The Dark Side of Meritocracy

A meritocracy is a political system in which economic goods and political power are vested in individuals on the basis of talent, effort, and achievement, rather than on wealth, social class, or other arbitrary prejudices. 

The principle is simple and easily illustrated with an example. Let’s say you’re hiring someone to perform a job, in this case a mechanic to repair your car. Who should you choose? In the interest of both efficiency (the mechanic’s capacity to quickly make affordable, quality repairs) and fairness (rewarding people for quality work), you would want to select the mechanic with the best reputation and ability—in other words, on the basis of merit.

Continue reading “The Dark Side of Meritocracy”

Karl Popper on Totalitarianism and the Application of Scientific Method to Politics 

Totalitarianism is defined by the Oxford dictionary as “a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state.” Totalitarian governments restrict individual freedoms and rights, prohibit democracy and voting, and maintain strict centralized control over all aspects of public and private life. In a totalitarian government, the collective is prioritized over the individual.

Continue reading “Karl Popper on Totalitarianism and the Application of Scientific Method to Politics “