•  249
    A new proof for the physical world
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 44 (4): 531-537. 1984.
    A proof is offered according to which if a psychological premise held by many diverse philosophers through the centuries to the effect that any represented physical property will be held to be exemplified unless some conflicting physical property is simultaneously represented is considered to be necessary, then there are physical objects in every possible world.
  •  193
    It is customary to think that Objective List (“OL), Desire-Satisfaction (“D-S”) and Hedonistic (“HED”) theories of prudential value pretty much cover the waterfront, and that those of the three that are “subjective” are naturalistic (in the sense attacked by Moore, Ross and Ewing), while those that are “objective” must be Platonic, Aristotelian or commit the naturalist fallacy. I here argue for a theory that is both naturalistic (because voluntaristic) and objective but neither Platonic, Aristot…Read more
  •  133
    Epistemic Closure, Home Truths, and Easy Philosophy
    Journal of Philosophy 115 (1): 34-51. 2018.
    In spite of the intuitiveness of epistemic closure, there has been a stubborn stalemate regarding whether it is true, largely because some of the “Moorean” things we seem to know easily seem clearly to entail “heavyweight” philosophical things that we apparently cannot know easily—or perhaps even at all. In this paper, I will show that two widely accepted facts about what we do and don’t know—facts with which any minimally acceptable understanding of knowledge must comport—are jointly inconsiste…Read more
  •  125
    American philosopher Everett W. Hall was among the first epistemologists writing in English to have promoted “representationism,” a currently popular explanation of cognition. According to this school, there are no private sense-data or qualia, because the ascription of public properties that are exemplified in the world of common sense is believed to be sufficient to explain mental content. In this timely volume, Walter Horn, perhaps the foremost living expert on Hall’s philosophy, not only pro…Read more
  •  113
    Two arguments Paul Snowdon has brought against the causal theory of perception are examined. One involves the claim that, based on the phenomenology of perceptual situations, it cannot be the case that perception is an essentially causal concept. The other is a reductio , according to which causal theorists’ arguments imply that a proposition Snowdon takes to be obviously non-causal ( A is married to B ) can be analyzed into some sort of indefinite ‘spousal connection’ plus a causal ingredient .…Read more
  •  58
    "Populism" has long been a dirty word. To some, it suggests the tyranny of the mob, to others, a xenophobic nativism. It is sometimes considered conducive to (if not simply identical to) fascism. In this timely book, Walter Horn acquits populism by "distilling" it, in order to finally give the people the power to govern themselves, free from constraints imposed either by conservatives (or libertarians) on the right or liberals (or Marxists) on the left. Beginning with explanations of what it mea…Read more
  •  45
    Reid and Hall on Perceptual Relativity and Error
    Journal of Scottish Philosophy 8 (2): 115-145. 2010.
    Epistemological realists have long struggled to explain perceptual error without introducing a tertium quid between perceivers and physical objects. Two leading realist philosophers, Thomas Reid and Everett Hall, agreed in denying that mental entities are the immediate objects of perceptions of the external world, but each relied upon strange metaphysical entities of his own in the construction of a realist philosophy of perception. Reid added ‘visible figures’ to sensory impressions and specifi…Read more
  •  45
    Tonality, Musical Form, and Aesthetic Value
    Perspectives of New Music 53. 2015.
    It has been claimed by Diana Raffman, that atonal (and in particular serial) music can have no aesthetic value, because it is in an important sense meaningless. This worthlessness is claimed to result from cognitive/psychological facts about human listeners that have been confirmed by empirical investigations such as those conducted by Lerdahl and Jackendoff. Similar assertions about the necessary inferiority of 12-tone music have been made by, among others, Taruskin, Cavell, and Goldman, some o…Read more
  •  44
    The Rise and Fall of Disjunctivism
    Abstracta 7 (1): 1-15. 2013.
    In the direct realist tradition of Reid and Austin, disjunctivism has joined its precursors inproudly trumpeting its allegiance with naïve realism. And the theory gains plausibility, par-ticularly as compared with adverbialism, if one considers a Wittgensteinian line of argumentregarding the use of sensation words. But ‘no common factor’ doctrines can be shown to beinconsistent with the naïve realism that has served as their main support. This does notmean that either disjunctivism or the Wittge…Read more
  •  16
    Libertarianism and Private Property in Land II
    American Journal of Economics and Sociology 44 (1): 67-80. 1985.
    Whether or not we have any natural right to landownership, like life and liberty, the institution of private property is agood. The utility produced by private property in land is overshadowed by the evils produced by the speculative withholding of supramarginal land unless compensatory payments are required of landowners. Such payments should be made to those living in the same “rental area” and should be of an amount that will eliminate all incentive to land speculation. It is not always eithe…Read more
  •  14
    Libertarianism and Private Property in Land I
    American Journal of Economics and Sociology 43 (3): 341-356. 1984.
    The positions on private landownership of two libertarian scholars thought to have a wide following in that movement are examined The libertarians —Murray Rothbard and Robert Nozick—hold positions which are untenable. Rothbard's theory is almost indistinguishable from John Locke's and rests on the labor theory of ownership and the admixture theory of labor; standards which are too vague. Nozick believes that making something valuable gives a right of ownership, but again the standard is too ambi…Read more
  •  11
    The Perennial Solution Center
    Imprint Books. 2003.
    Part play, part breviary, this book of conversations on "transcendence" is interspersed with brief excerpts from a wide variety of works on mysticism, philosophy, and the psychology of religion.
  •  11
    Coase's Theorem and the Speculative Withholding of Land
    Land Economics 61 (2): 208-217. 1985.
    In his classic paper on social costs, social scientist R. H. Coase has argued that in a world without transaction costs in the "buying and selling," of social benefits and damages, resource allocation would be unaffected by a change in the apportioning of liabilities. That is, whether or not a social nuisance-causer must pay damages to those to whom he is a nuisance, will not, in an efficient economy with no transaction costs, have any effect on resource allocation. In this paper, the author int…Read more
  •  6
    A Guide to Allocating Resources Between Mediation and Adjudication
    Justice System Journal 15 (3): 824-841. 1992.
    Mediation is generally considered faster and less expensive than adjudication. However, if cases undergoing mediation cannot be resolved by such means, the time and cost must simply be added to the cost of adjudicating the matter. This paper suggests marks by which particular workers' compensation disputes can be determined to be good candidates for mediation.
  •  5
    Why Radical Democracy is Inconsistent with "Mob Rule"
    The Romanian Journal of Society and Politics 1 (15): 7-22. 2021.
    The word “populism” commonly elicits images of hordes of angry townspeople with pitchforks and torches. That is the classic picture of “the mob,” bolstered by countless movie and television productions, and it is clearly based on such historical events as the English civil wars, the sans-culottes’ terror, the Bolshevik revolution, and the recent genocides in Rwanda and Burundi. Many of the leaders involved in fostering such horrors are seen as radical democrats whose successors today should also…Read more
  •  5
    Review of Drutman, Breaking the Two-Party Doom Loop (review)
    A Hornbook of Democracy Book Reviews, 3:16 AM. 2021.
    This is a review of Lee Drutman's recent book endorsing multi-party democracy in America.
  • Substance and Mode: A Spinozistic Study
    Dissertation, Brown University. 1978.
  • Review of Adam Jentleson, Kill Switch (review)
    A Hornbook of Democracy Book Reviews. 2021.
    Adam Jentleson's book about the U.S. Senate, it's leaders, and mostly its Filibuster is reviewed.