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Jon Cogburn
Interests: some
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In which respects? On my end it's been an unrelenting drag, but I'd be happy to find humor in it.
Toggle Commented 16 hours ago on Autopsy for Newapps at Jon Cogburn's Blog
My impression is that really good group blogs need a sense of shared mission such as we had early on in Newapps and such as the Speculative Realism blogosphere did years ago (the various separate blogs might has well have been a group blog). It's no accident that the philosophically richest blogs are pea soup (analytic ethics), prosblogian (analytic philosophy of religion), aesthetics for birds (mostly analytic aesthetics), and m-phi (formal philosophy). There's a real esprit de corps at those blogs that makes for healthy discussions and bravery in people putting themselves out there to share ideas. In continental philosophy, there are an awful lot of pages that mostly show call for papers. I think maybe part of the problem is that too many people at SPEP don't accept that there is a core to continental philosophy (e.g. the three H's). Smart people of good will oppose the idea of a core, but as a result there's a danger of the center not holding and you just have all these disparate conversations that don't hook up. I think for philosophy to work on the internet more is needed. During the heydey of the Speculative Realist blogosphere about six years ago it was pretty cool because you had all these graduate students reading the same stuff hashing things out (France is neat the same way because each class of graduating PhD students all prepare for the same aggregation exam.). I think that Paul Ennis not getting a job and then shutting down "Another Heidegger Blog" was a real blow to that, as well as various descents into acrimony, especially Perverse Egalitarianism, which in its heydey hosted some really nice critical discussions.
Toggle Commented yesterday on Autopsy for Newapps at Jon Cogburn's Blog
Fantastic! We're really hyped about reading it.
Yeah, that would be awesome! I'll get the reading group to read it next week if you don't mind. Please send it either to my academic address or to joncogburn2 at gmail dot com. This is a weird synchronicity, as I just got Jim's fantastic "What Logics Mean" from amazon two weeks ago.
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I'm not going to tell how many novels I have written that have never been published. For one thing, I'd have to think about it and actually count and, also, it's a lot. But I don't regret doing it because I enjoyed the process. And, as Stephen King says in... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Emily's Pretty Cool Blog
Hey, it's great to hear from you. I continue to have fond memories of your part in blogospheric hashing out of speculative realism type issues six or so years ago, as well as your stuff on music. In retrospect I think that that was something of a heydey for philosophically inflected blogging. As far as I can tell, the worry is mostly about the practical consequences of widespread acceptance of the Aristotelian inference that ceteris paribus, it's better to have an ability (at least those that throughout history have been conducive to human flourishing) than to lack it. Via a simple equivocation one can go from that to the view that the disabled are *worse people* in a whole host of morally relevant ways. The person who accepts the Aristotelian premise might also too easily dismiss the Nietzschean point that our weaknesses often end up being inextricably tied to the kinds of strengths that both define us and make our life worth living, which is a major reason for the ceteris paribus clause. These aren't to be sniffed at. Hitler perfected the practice of genocide by a genocide against the disabled which I think worked in part because the equivocation is a natural one for people to make. And I think the Nietzschean point is pretty central for how we find dignity. Nonetheless: (1) the dangers attendant upon holding a view are, all else being equal, irrelevant to whether the view is truth or false, and (2) the normative space is much more complicated than people rejecting the Aristotelian premise admit. I think that Todd May's letter (linked to above) articulates this much more clearly than I was or am able to.
Yeah, it's one of my all time favorites too. This is one of the ones (maybe California Uber Alles is the only other) where they changed the lyrics after Reagen came to power. If they were still all together I know they'd have released another version in light of W and friends' depredations.
Toggle Commented Sep 12, 2014 on Dead Kennedys - Bleed For Me at Jon Cogburn's Blog
That's really interesting. I had seen some statistics where they compared various life outcomes of people who were highly involved in their churches and people who just showed up, and if I remember right the former did better on lots of odd things like how quickly they recovered from surgery. I don't know which way the causation might go though. It's not implausible to think that people who are more involved actually benefit from being more enmeshed in a group of people doing something they find valuable.
Cool. The Samoans always said that their secret weapon was tuning their instruments. Reputedly, Lee Ving of Fear was tasked by other punk bands to have a sit down with one of the Samoans' singers and tell him that he needed to reign in his lyrics because they were too disturbing. That's not quite up there with Kissinger getting the Nobel Prize, but it's pretty close.
Toggle Commented Sep 12, 2014 on Guest post by Todd May at Jon Cogburn's Blog
Yeah, for some reason with moral issues or views that are presupposed by a lot of people's research it becomes very difficult for people to assume that their interlocutor is basically informed and of good will. And the internet seems to exacerbate this.
Toggle Commented Sep 12, 2014 on Guest post by Todd May at Jon Cogburn's Blog
Thanks for the support. I really enjoyed your intervention in the Chomsky/Zizek thing as well as you and Leon's discussions about the heritage of Speculative Realism. I hope to do some posts about these in the next few days.
Maybe there's a de dicto/de re thing and we're talking past one another? I didn't intend to suggest that anyone did posts patting themselves on the back for censoring things. The only connection with de Boer is that that proponents of views about disability that go against a certain consensus are shamed (and silenced by other means) in the way that de Boer finds too typical in liberal social media. [Note: Sorry it took a while for your comment to appear. I'm not moderating comments, but for some reason your post went into the spam box and I didn't check it until today.]
Wow, there's so much great stuff here. . . Last year at my church we did an Adult Christian Education course on Martin Luther King's theology (really just as expressed in the Sermons gathered in the "Strength to Love" course). I would love to go through that material again with your question front and center. It's also clear that it ramifies out far beyond questions of theology. Would it be fair to add your specific worry about redemptive suffering to the canonical set of worries about pacifism? This might not be right though. . . I've always been suspicious of just war theory so I don't know if personal analogues would work to stop the way redemptive suffering is justifying the kind exploitation and violence you are witnessing (sorry to loop this back into a Christian context, but I'm using that word deliberately; I don't think anything in any of the various reformed Books of Confessions speaks to your issue, and it strikes me as so pressing as to constitute a status confessionis). A distinct, but related, problem that occurs to me after reading your comment is the manner in Tolstoy had this belief that the moral regeneration of Russia was going to come through the serfs, because of the redemptive nature of suffering. If history really worked anything like that, we'd live in a much better world. After reading your comment it occurs to me that this is a personal issue as well. I used to think that one could maybe see claims about the redemptive nature of suffering as being normative, along the lines of Nietzsche's "That which does not kill me makes me stronger." That's clearly false. Lot's of stuff can paralyze. But I take Nietzsche to be commending a way to react to your own suffering, even your own paralysis. It's still clearly not always good advice, but likely to be very helpful. I think that one could read Christian claims about redemptive suffering, even Tolstoy's as similarly normative. But part of what's interesting in what is revealed by your account of abuse in Christian homes is that there are systematic kinds of cases where it's really, really, really bad (in fact cruel and destructive) advice. Maybe, just maybe one might argue that conservative Christians just have a mistaken notion of what counts as redemption. The command to make one's suffering redemptive maybe needn't imply submitting to it meekly. This response kind of strikes me as pretty thin gruel though. I mean the fact that your worry applies to King's project as well shows it to be so.
Wow, that's great stuff. I'm going to move it to a top post and then try to do a comment there.
Oops, just remembered that the venue was La Zona Rosa. The place has no wikipedia page* albeit it is still open. It's a great place in part because the management is militant about not letting the mixing people deafen the audience. AT least in my memory, even rockers are forced to put in these really intimate performances. [*There is one for the Coheed and Cambria album "Live at La Zona Rosa" which was recorded there in 2004.]
Toggle Commented Sep 11, 2014 on Mose Allison - Getting There at Jon Cogburn's Blog
Oops, Angry Samoans beat you to it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxS7a7GDqt0 .
Toggle Commented Sep 10, 2014 on Guest post by Todd May at Jon Cogburn's Blog
Ooh, that's fantastic. I'm going to read his piece along with the old Raffman one and try to think this through.
Wow that's a simple line. My old colleague James Taylor (now at the College of New Jersey) always used to be able to stun me with simple, yet ultimately plausible and satisfying, things utilitarians could say about issues where lots of people just assume they can't. I think what you are saying actually reflects a deep and important point about moral psychology (maybe "Love the One You're With" is a much better song than I ever supposed). I guess my first worry about what you propose is going to be that it doesn't face down Dawkins/Singer type slippery slope to infanticide etc. which are at least in the neighborhood of the initial worry. This being said, an argument needs to be made that it should. . . Assuming it should, the thought would be that we make ourselves less miserable as a general rule if agree with them? My second worry is that not dwelling on the ways things could be better might not be sufficient for what is psychologically required in parenthood on the side of loving your kid just the way s/he is. I have an intuition that something more is needed. But I recognize that there might be a utilitarian approach to this as well. It's a real practical thing because so many parents end up communicating to their children that their children are garbage. You are so scared that your kid won't accommodate himself to the world and as a result will end up not self sufficient and hence liable to being victimized (or even victimizing others, especially if there are issues of self-control for boys). But in trying to get the kid to behave better, it's very easy for parents to communicate to the kid that s/he is garbage. The psychology is equivocal here. Having too high self-esteem is actually really bad (prisoners and bullies have the highest self-esteem, at least the way psychologists measure it) as is having abysmally low self-esteem (at the farthest extreme, one commonality among child killers is the way they are made to feel like garbage by their parents, in many cases the parents' religion made this worse). But maybe there is nothing deeper here than messy utilitarian facts here and it's just a matter of trying to follow guidelines that will improve the kid while doing things that hit the sweet spot with respect to their self-esteem. I still think that this is enough to undermine some of the narratives you get in critical disability studies. That is, a crucial part of parenthood is getting your kid to accommodate reality in various ways, not the other way around (this is a crucial part of adulthood with respect to oneself as well). But the narrative from critical disability studies has its place too with respect to this other issue of the necessity of loving your kid just the way s/he is.
Hey, great to hear from you and congratulations on being a new Dad! Your work looks really cool. We should get a beer at the next APA and I can bug you about the nature of evil, free will, and Kant's moral argument for the existence of God (maybe not in that order).
Yeah, what you say tracks my experience pretty well. From the last time I had access to the newapps server, I know you left one or more pretty sensible comments over there that haven't been approved. Was that on Ed Kazarian's post or my own? In any case, I should clarify that I haven't been in charge of moderating my own posts for a few days now and that the ability being taken away from me predates my leaving/being pushed out. I wouldn't point this out publicly except for the fact that the comments policy now falsely states that authors moderate their own posts.
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This is the title of Stephen King's incredible book about fiction writing. I'm not sure how many times I've read it, but it's safe to say a lot. I figured for the first post on this blog, I should talk about how I got here. Here being at the point... Continue reading
Posted Sep 9, 2014 at Emily's Pretty Cool Blog
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My name is Emily Beck Cogburn. I'm a writer of all kinds of stuff--fiction and non-fiction. My novel Louisiana Saves the Library is forthcoming from Kensington Books. Beyond that, I'm a freelance journalist and certified Les Mills instructor with a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy from the University of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 9, 2014 at Emily's Pretty Cool Blog
Thanks so much for sharing this. It's so great. I'm going to put it as a top level post and try to think through a more detailed response there. Thanks again.
Cool. Thanks for the kind words. It can be liberating when one of the things you've been scared about actually happens and you find out it's not that big a deal.