Wednesday, October 20, 2010

One day you'll understand.

"No, truly, despair is not something which only occurs in adolescents, something one grows out of with no further ado--'as one outgrows illusion'. Though people don't do that either, even though they are foolish enough to think they do. On the contrary, one quite often comes upon men and women and elderly people who have illusions just as childish as those of any adolescent. But what is ignored is that there are essentially two forms of illusion: that of hope and that of recollection. The adolescent's illusion is that of hope, that of the adult recollection."

-The Sickness unto Death, Søren Kierkegaard

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Shit matters.

"See, I put it this way: for me, philosophy is fundamentally about our finite situation. We can define that in terms of--we're beings toward death. We're featherless, two-legged, linguistically-conscious creatures born between urine and feces whose bodies will one day be the culinary delight of terrestrial worms. That's us. We're beings toward death. At the same time, we have desire, while we are organisms in space and time; and so it's desire in the face of death. And then of course you've got dogmatism, various attempts to hold onto certainty, various forms of idolatry. And you've got dialog in the face of dogmatism, and then of course structurally and institutionally you have domination and you have democracy. You have attempts of people trying to render accountable elites: kings, queens, suzerains, corporate elites, politicians--try to make these elites accountable to everyday people. So philosophy itself becomes a critical disposition of wrestling with desire in the face of death, wrestling with dialog in the face of dogmatism, and wrestling with democracy--trying to keep alive very fragile democratic experiments--in the face of structures of domination."

Cornel West, interviewed in the film Examined Life

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The gift that keeps on giving.

Tea Party darling and Delaware Republican senatorial candidate Christine O'Donnell denies any connection with the occult, which just makes it all the more impressive that she came up with an opening line this magical.