Ethics

Some Vagaries and Evagaries of Avarice

By |2019-11-06T22:25:47-06:00November 6th, 2019|Categories: American Republic, David Deavel, Economics, Ethics, Morality, Senior Contributors, Virtue|

Avarice brings to mind the image of a hoarder—one who simply wants things for himself. However, while wanting more of something is certainly one side of avarice, it might not be the most important side. The image that always comes to mind for me when thinking about the vice of greed, or avarice, is [...]

Momentary Morality & Extended Ethics

By |2019-03-18T22:32:13-06:00March 18th, 2019|Categories: E.B., Ethics, Eva Brann, In Honor of Eva Brann at 90 Series, Liberal Learning, Morality, St. John's College, Virtue|

Morality requires command-issuing universal law; ethics, on the other hand, demands natural and acquired personal qualities. One human being may indeed live with two moralities, one public, one private, and this duplicity is not always hypocritical; it may simply make life livable and prevent it from becoming worse. You have been reading and talking about [...]

Banning Books and Burning Heretics

By |2019-07-23T11:43:06-06:00January 24th, 2019|Categories: Civil Society, Culture, Culture War, England, Ethics, Free Speech, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Modernity, Poetry, Rights, Senior Contributors, Western Civilization, Western Tradition|

Advocates of the liberal arts include “heretical” books in the great conversation, whereas political liberals seek to silence them as dangerous. As we have seen in Nazi Germany and in communist countries, the banning of “heretical” books ends with the burning of “heretics”… Several years ago, I visited the two-room shack in Tupelo, Mississippi, [...]

What Anti-Semites and Pro-Abortionists Have in Common

By |2019-01-15T11:46:04-06:00January 17th, 2019|Categories: Abortion, Ethics, Government, Joseph Pearce, Morality, Rights, Senior Contributors, Virtue, Western Civilization|

It is not about right and left but about right and wrong, and those who see politics in terms of right and wrong, and not in terms of right and left, will see parallels between the contempt of the anti-Semite towards the dignity of the human person and the contempt of the pro-abortionist towards [...]

The State vs. the Normal Good of Normal People

By |2019-07-11T10:46:37-06:00December 22nd, 2018|Categories: Abortion, Books, Civil Society, Culture War, Ethics, Family, Fr. James Schall, Homosexual Unions, Marriage, Modernity, Morality, Social Institutions|

What happens when our nation’s fundamental principles or standards are rejected? Jennifer Roback Morse’s new book, The Sexual State, is a lively and forceful examination of where we came from, where we are now, and where we ought to be on matters of human life… Genesis tells us that man was created “male and female.” [...]

Systematically Exterminating the Disabled

By |2018-11-21T00:48:20-06:00November 20th, 2018|Categories: Abortion, Ethics, Joseph Pearce, Senior Contributors, Western Civilization|

Back in the dark days of the 1930s and 1940s an evil regime, inspired by the relativist ideas of Friedrich Nietzsche, sought to breed a master race, practicing eugenics to eliminate those it considered subhuman (untermenschen), including the weak and the disabled. Today, many countries have resurrected the dark days of the past, using [...]

“Othello” and the Devil Inside

By |2018-11-17T22:38:30-06:00November 17th, 2018|Categories: Books, Character, Ethics, Evil, Humanities, Liberal Arts, Literature, Tragedy, Virtue, William Shakespeare|

In Othello, William Shakespeare, the philosopher of everyday life, holds up a mirror to us and shows us what human beings are capable of. Beneath our most pleasantly cultivated exterior, there often lurks a serpent… William Hazlitt is widely recognized as one of the greatest of Shakespearean critics. Yes, there is Dr. Johnson; yes, [...]

The Death of Europe: Two Classic Films and the Great War

By |2019-10-15T21:57:31-06:00November 10th, 2018|Categories: Ethics, Europe, Film, Friendship, Mark Malvasi, Nationalism, Senior Contributors, War, Western Civilization, World War II|

So incisive and troubling did the Nazis find Jean Renoir’s indictment of war and his embrace of the shared culture of Europe, that when the Wehrmacht invaded France and occupied Paris in the spring of 1940, Renoir’s film La Grande Illusion was among the first cultural artifacts Nazi officials confiscated… The Great War was a catastrophe for Europe. [...]

Two Kinds of Jesuits

By |2018-11-03T23:58:27-06:00November 3rd, 2018|Categories: Christianity, Culture War, Dwight Longenecker, Ethics, Faith, Religion, Senior Contributors|

Whereas heroic missionary effort and martyrdom seemed the hallmark of the first Jesuits, the second generation moved in a different direction... In the Roman calendar, October is a harvest for militant saints. Kicking off with Saint Therese of Lisieux who proclaimed, “Sanctity! It must be won at the point of a sword!”, the calendar marches [...]

The Saudi Crown Prince Starring in the Role of Henry II

By |2018-10-25T10:26:36-06:00October 21st, 2018|Categories: Ethics, Joseph Mussomeli, Journalism, Middle East, Monarchy, Politics, Tyranny|

We have all seen the scene at least once, although some of us have savored it perhaps dozens of times. The handsome, dynamic, misunderstood, modernizing young king, with his slender physique, slender beard, and even more slender morals, strutting about the banquet hall knocking the plates and goblets off the table in a drunken frenzy. [...]

Conscience in Montaigne’s “Essays” & Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”

By |2018-08-23T10:33:20-06:00August 22nd, 2018|Categories: Ethics, Evil, Mitchell Kalpakgian, Morality, William Shakespeare|

Despite the number of times the witches repeat “Fair is foul, and foul is fair,” Macbeth testifies to the objectivity of natural law and universal knowledge of good and evil known to conscience and written on the heart and mind of all persons... In the culture of sixteenth-century Europe that witnessed revolutions in geography with old [...]

The Right Idea: How West & East Seek the True, Good, & Beautiful

By |2019-07-10T23:21:43-06:00July 6th, 2018|Categories: Aristotle, Beauty, Ethics, George Stanciu, Intelligence, St. Thomas Aquinas, Truth|

Except for mystics, the goal of Western philosophers and theologians has been to find the right ideas, whereas Eastern thinkers seek the direct grasping of the first principles and the inner essences of natural things. I wish to suggest that the Western and Eastern paths to the true, the good, and the beautiful can be [...]

Have We Misjudged Machiavelli?

By |2018-06-28T15:45:06-06:00June 28th, 2018|Categories: Books, Classical Education, Ethics, History, Politics|

Machiavelli can enter public debate not merely as a wicked man concerned only with power and political maneuvering, but as a philosopher with myriad insights to offer modern politics, politicians, and even apolitical members of the public… Be Like the Fox: Machiavelli In His World, by Erica Benner (384 pages, W. W. Norton & [...]