Up here in Canada, there is very little vaccine hesitancy and just about zero political controversy about vaccinations. Ontario, for instance, has a Conservative government, but it’s all in on vaccinations. Almost all hospitalizations are now people who are not vaccinated. Yes, there are some breakthrough cases, more than I expected, but they seem to be almost entirely mild or non-symptomatic. And it’s not just vaccines. You still have to be masked to go into a store. Everyone obeys the rules. I’ll have to look up the numbers, but last time I checked Canada is doing a lot better on fatalities than the US. Canada is just one step away from the US, but the culture in some ways is very different.
I’m waiting to see what the science says. We will know more in a couple of weeks.
That’s why I’ve decided not to run. Otherwise I would have been a shoo-in.
Sanders is too old. So is Biden. I hope he doesn’t run again. Harris would be very low on my list and Buttigieg not much higher. I would happily vote for AOC, but she’s too young, she belongs in Congress, and I don’t believe she could win. I hope there’s someone in the wings who will captivate the voters. We need radical action to deal with climate change and a host of other problems. The Status Quo is not enough.
From the left: everyone who can work, should work, and should get paid enough to live a decent life. Everyone who can’t work should get some kind of social support.
We can ignore him, and I do. This is probably the first time since January that I’ve mentioned him. Unfortunately, his followers will not stop talking about him. The Republican Party needs to find some integrity. Don’t hold your breath waiting.
Isn’t capitalism supposed to solve these problems without government interference?
I’m always amused, if that’s the right word, when people say “socialism has never worked”, as if capitalism works. Well, capitalism does work, to the advantage of a small group of people. Capitalism also has periodic depressions built in; another feature of capitalism is insecurity of employment; capitalism treats workers as a commodities rather than as human beings; and capitalism has no concern about polluting the environment. I don’t say that capitalism is all bad, but it must be properly regulated. The greatest success of capitalism is its resilience.
I haven’t kept up with Fukuyama; I was vaguely aware that he had kind of recanted, but I didn’t read anything after “The End of History”. I certainly know other Straussians who find Trumpism horrifying. Even so, I suspect that my version of democracy is rather different from Fukuyama’s. I was introduced to the Bloomian version of Strauss back in the 60s and I was not impressed. That was during the crisis of civil rights and then the crisis of the War in Vietnam, and the only people I saw who were facing those crises were left radicals. I worked with various pacifist organizations for some years and I found their understanding of political theory more realistic. And today I stand with the climate radicals. We need a political theory and structure that can get us through this crisis.
Since I’ve been kind of badmouthing some Straussians here, I thought I should mention some Straussians whose work I like. In the older generation, there’s Seth Benardete, an excellent classicist, and also Stanley Rosen, whose book on the Symposium is excellent. I remember using it when I took a grad course in Plato. Harry Jaffa wrote an interesting book on Lincoln, “Crisis of the House Divided”, though I think at the end he shows the weakness of the Straussian approach to the Crisis of Civil Rights. A little younger (well, in my generation, not so young any more) is Susan Meld Shell, who is an important Kant scholar. I’m sure there are more; I haven’t done this stuff for decades, so I’m out of touch.