NEH grants for developing Philosophy courses

by Harry on September 18, 2008

Via Leiter: the NEH is offering substantial grants for faculty to develop courses on “Enduring Questions”:

The [new grant] program, which goes public today, will grant up to $25,000 each for “pre-disciplinary” pilot courses designed to tackle “the most fundamental concerns of the humanities.”

Among the “enduring questions” the endowment hopes the courses will ask: What is the good life? What is justice? Is there such a thing as right and wrong? Is there a human nature and, if so, what is it?

The endowment expects to make up to 20 awards, and $15,000 of each $25,000 grant will be a stipend for the faculty member who designs and teaches the course.

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Leiter says this is “quite bizarre”; being less expressive I’d just say that it’s distinctly odd.

[click to continue…]

The end of global deregulatory reform

by Henry on September 18, 2008

“Tyler Cowen”:http://www.marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2008/09/ive-always-want.html points to this “NYT article”:http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/18/business/worldbusiness/18rescue.html on the international fallout from the current market crisis in the US.

Is the United States no longer the global beacon of unfettered, free-market capitalism? In extending a last-minute $85 billion lifeline to American International Group, the troubled insurer, Washington has not only turned away from decades of rhetoric about the virtues of the free market and the dangers of government intervention, but it has also probably undercut future American efforts to promote such policies abroad. [click to continue…]

Farewell to the PDs

by Henry on September 18, 2008

So it looks as though the PDs, Ireland’s neo-liberal party, are on the “way to the chopping block”:http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/frontpage/2008/0917/1221599424850.html?via=mr. While I disagreed vigorously with most of their policies, I have mildly mixed feelings about this, if only because an uncle of mine was a founding member (and the person who led them up until the disastrous election that precipitated their current state of disrepair). But mostly, I’m posting so that I can link to this wonderful extract from the current leader’s public statement on their future.

Mr Cannon said it was “far from me to pre-empt what that decision might be”. In his opinion, the party had two choices. It could “limp on” into an uncertain future, while elected members were “picked off the edge of the herd like wounded animals”. The other choice was to dissolve so that the party could say: “We have triumphed and in our triumph we are leaving the field with a degree of grace and dignity.”

Far from pre-empting, indeed …