John Schwenkler

John Schwenkler is an assistant professor in the Department of Philosophy at Florida State University.

By this author

"Military Metaphysics"

Today is (was?) the 50th anniversary of Dwight D. Eisenhower's Presidential farewell address, in which he coined the famous phrase "military-industrial complex" in warning of the "economic, political, even spiritual" consequences of the "total influence" of America's rapidly growing military establishment and arms industry.

Failing America

Writes Joe Klein, on today's news concerning the black-white achievement gap in reading, where 12% of black fourth-grade boys and 38% of white fourth-grade boys are designated as proficient:

Oh, my - ctd.

I called attention the other day to a couple of startlingly - though by no means atypically - offensive posts by the conservative blogger Jim Hoft, whose blog "Gateway Pundit" has been hosted at First Things for quite some time now. Now comes this comment from Joe Carter, FT's Web editor, explaining that Hoft's blog is about to leave FT's Web site.

Oh, my

The big, bloggy news today concerns a supporter of Rand Paul, the Republican candidate for Kentucky's Senate seat, who reacted badly when a female MoveOn.org volunteer went in for a harmless prank. (For the record, I too am a Paul supporter.) Writes the Louisville Courier-Journal (boldface emphasis mine):

"A corruption of the Church"

Via Ross Douthat, I see that Jody Bottum has a truly courageous piece in the new issue of First Things calling for Cardinal Sodano (whose see-no-evil antics were blogged about earlier here and here) to step down from his position as dean of the College of Cardinals over his role in covering up case

Democrats and the Pro-Life Movement

Ross Douthat has written an honest, charitable post that is the most thoughtful contribution I've so far seen a conservative commentator make to the debate over Bart Stupak's stance on health care reform.

A Conversion Story

The great English philosopher Michael Dummett recounts his journey to Catholicism in an intellectual autobiography in a recent volume of essays on his philosophy:

Leszek Kołakowski, 1927-2009

Leszek Koakowski, the philosopher and communist dissident who spent most of his career at Oxford after leaving Poland in 1968, died this Friday afternoon in an Oxford hospital. Reuters has a brief obituary here, and here is a short account of his life I wrote for this magazine back in April 2008, when I reviewed his Why Is There Something Rather Than Nothing?