To those of us in the universities, the Left’s animus to Catholicism revealed by Wikileaks this past week is not news. What Podesta and the Clinton circle said might have been exposed, but such slights about Catholicism are heard around universities all the time. As the Wall Street Journal points out, if such things were said about Islam they would be denounced as bigotry.
It was Milton Friedman who said: “a corporation’s responsibility is to make as much money for the stockholders as possible.” Despite his Nobel Prize, Friedman definitely hasn’t persuaded our business schools of that. In fact much of the literature on the social responsibilities of business was produced as a retort to that 1962 assertion of his.
Teaching philosophy isn’t usually thought to go with an interest in fashion. For one thing, philosophers are hardly legendary for their sartorial flair. For another, someone might question why the philosopher would consider fashion an important subject to think or write about. Fashion and the ethics of the fashion industry do preoccupy me, though. I have my reasons, not least of which is the thought of the German phenomenologist, Max Scheler (1874-1928). Scheler speaks of the “natural outlook,” by which phrase he tries to capture the idea that some phenomena are so close to us, so everyday, that we lose sight…
Middle-earth is, in one sense, the story of struggle against inevitable decline. While the Ring is destroyed and a new age of peace is ushered in, there is nevertheless the palpable sense that it is a reprieve as much as a victory—that decline has been temporarily arrested but not halted. After all, Gondor in its replenished splendor under the King is still only an imitation of Númenor; the Elves, wise teachers of Men and lovers of beauty, must depart to the havens and sail westward, never to return. In the midst of triumphant joy there is deep and poignant sorrow.