There is a “revolving door” between federal agencies and the industries regulated by them. Often, at the end of their industry tenure, key industry personnel seek employment in government regulatory entities and vice versa. The flow of workers between the two sectors could bring about good. Industry veterans might have specialized knowledge that could be useful to regulatory bodies and former government employees could help businesses become and remain compliant with regulations. But the “revolving door” also poses at least three (...) ethical and policy challenges that have to do with public trust and fair representation. First, the presence of former key industry personnel on review boards could adversely impact the public’s confidence in regulatory decisions about new technology products, including agrifood biotechnologies. Second, the ‘‘revolving door’’ may result in policy decisions about technologies that are biased in favor of industry interests. And third, the ‘‘revolving door’’ virtually guarantees industry a voice in the policy-making process, even though other stakeholders have no assurance that their concerns will be addressed by regulatory agencies. We believe these three problems indicate a failure of regulatory review for new technologies. The review process lacks credibility because, at the very least, it is procedurally biased in favor of industry interests. We argue that prohibiting the flow of personnel between regulatory agencies and industry would not be a satisfactory solution to the three problems of public trust and just representation. To address them, regulatory entities must reject the traditional notion of objectivity. Instead they should adopt the conception of objectivity developed by Sandra Harding and re-configure their regulatory review on the basis of it. That will ensure that a heterogeneous group of stakeholders is at the decision-making table. The fair representation of interests of different constituencies in the review process could do much to inspire warranted public confidence in regulatory protocols and decisions. (shrink)
Kant’s example of lying to the murderer at the door has been a cherished source of scorn for thinkers with little sympathy for Kant’s philosophy and a source of deep puzzlement for those more favorably inclined. The problem is that Kant seems to say that it’s always wrong to lie – even if necessary to prevent a murderer from reaching his victim – and that if one does lie, one becomes partially responsible for the killing of the victim. If this (...) is correct, then Kant’s account seems not only to require us to respect the murderer more than the victim, but also that we somehow can become responsible for the consequences that ultimately result from someone else’s wrongdoing. After World War II our spontaneous negative reaction to this apparently absurd line of argument is brought out even more starkly by making the murderer at the door a Nazi officer looking for Jews hidden in people’s homes. This paper argues that Kant’s discussion of lying to the murderer at the door has been seriously misinterpreted. The suggested root of the problem is that the Doctrine of Right has been given insufficient attention in Kant interpretation. It is in this work we find many of the arguments needed to understand Kant’s analysis of lying to the murderer in “On a Supposed Right to Lie from Philanthropy”. When we interpret this essay in light of Kant’s discussion in the Doctrine of Right, we can make sense of why lying to the murderer isn’t to wrong the murderer, why we nevertheless become responsible for the consequences of the lie and why choosing to lie to do wrong ‘in the highest degree’. Finally, the Doctrine of Right account of rightful relations makes it possible for us to analyze the example when we make the murderer at the door a Nazi officer. (shrink)
In this article, I turn my attention to the figure of the ignorant master, Joseph Jacotot, that is depicted in The Ignorant Schoolmaster. Five Lessons in Intellectual Emancipation (1991). I will show that the voice of Jacotot can actually be read as a reaction against the progressive figure of the teacher which, following Rancière's view, can be seen as effecting a stultification. In some respects, however, Rancière's analysis of the pedagogical order no longer seems to be valid in today's partly (...) reconfigured, pedagogical order that depicts the teacher in terms of facilitation. Yet, the figure of the facilitator can be seen as effecting a stultification as well. Therefore, I will stress that Jacotot's voice is highly relevant today. The most important difference between the figure of the (old and current) figure of the stultifyer and that of the ignorant master is identified in their starting point. The stultifying master starts from the assumption of inequality. S/he transforms taught material (words, text, images, etc.) into objects of knowledge or resources for competence development that open the door to another world. The ignorant master (Jacotot) assumes equal intelligence and draws attention to a thing in common. According to Rancière, the ignorant master keeps the door closed and puts his/her students in the presence of a thing in common. (shrink)
In this essay Troy Richardson works to develop a conceptual framework and set of terms by which a diplomatic reception of different forms of law can be developed in multicultural education. Taking up the trope of the door in multiculturalist discourse as a site in which a welcoming of the difference of others is organized, Richardson interrogates the complex nature of receptivity to Indigenous customary law, in particular. He argues that, within this trope, a metonymic structure operates in relation to (...) the deployment of “policy” that maintains a perspective of customary law as premodern and primitive. This structure leads to an impoverished set of terms and a lack of diplomacy toward difference. Richardson proceeds by considering the notion of extraterritoriality and the metonyms that organize Emmanuel Levinas's discourse of “doors” in conceptualizing a welcoming receptivity. The term “extraterritoriality” anticipates the law of the other as it approaches the door and implies a diplomatic moment of reception of such difference. Richardson concludes by highlighting Jacques Derrida's evaluation of Levinas's discourse of receptivity and by considering the possibilities for a diplomatic engagement with the laws of others toward a mutation in the current geopolitical moment. (shrink)
Using various meanings of ?visit? and ?friend? this essay freely explores connections between Milton's cultivation of fame in Europe, leading to reports in the early lives of visits of scholarly foreigners to his door, and the extraordinary concentration on scenarios of human and divine visitation in the late poems. Social, political and religious strands are followed, from humanist self-presentation in the sonnets through to prophetic isolation in the late poems. Codes of friendship are rehearsed concerning confidentiality and betrayal, and attention (...) is paid to the effect of blindness on the activities of the humanist writer, the need for supporting visits, and an increasing interiority and preoccupation with the responsibilities of those engaged with God's special causes. The proto-humanist visit of Raphael to Adam in Paradise Lost and the many guiding visitations in that poem are contrasted with the situation in Samson Agonistes, where divine guidance is presented as clearer in the past than the present, and the reader is invited to share difficulties of discernment in the Restoration world, prefigured in Judges. The essay ends with the simultaneous publication of Milton's humanist legacy and sale of many of his foreign-language books. (shrink)
Kerry Laird, a literature and composition professor who does not have tenure, is in his first year at Temple. He said that, as a student and instructor, he always enjoyed the way professors use their office doors to reveal bits of their personality and to challenge students with cartoons, artwork, and various phrases. So when he started at Temple, he put a cartoon up showing Smokey the Bear, a girl scout and a boy scout and the tag line: “Kids — (...) don’t fuck with God or bears will eat you.” He received a complaint and decided that he understood why the college “might not want the f word” in the hallway, and so he decided to put up something else. (shrink)
Embarrassed by the apparent rigorism Kant expresses so bluntly in 'On a Supposed Right to Lie,' numerous contemporary Kantians have attempted to show that Kant's ethics can justify lying in specific circumstances, in particular, when lying to a murderer is necessary in order to prevent her from killing another innocent person. My aim is to improve upon these efforts and show that lying to prevent the death of another innocent person could be required in Kantian terms. I argue (1) that (...) our perfect Kantian duty of self-preservation can require our lying to save our own lives when threatened with unjust aggression, and (2) that Kant's understanding of moral duty was that duties are symmetrical , such that if one has a duty to perform a given action on one's own behalf or to protect one's own rational nature, then one also has a duty to perform similar acts on other's behalf or to protect their rational nature. Thus, that the individual protected against aggression by means of deception is not oneself should be of no consequence from a Kantian perspective. Lying to the murderer is thus an extension of the Kantian requirement of self-defense. (shrink)
It is, as Dana Nelkin (2004) says, a rare point of agreement among participants in the free will debate that rational deliberation presupposes a belief in freedom. Of course, the precise content of that belief – and, indeed, the nature of deliberation – is controversial, with some philosophers claiming that deliberation commits us to a belief in libertarian free will (Taylor 1966; Ginet 1966), and others claiming that, on the contrary, deliberation presupposes nothing more than an epistemic openness that is (...) entirely compatible with determinism (Dennett 1984; Kapitan 1986). Since, however, the claim that deliberation presupposes freedom is accepted by all sides in the free will debate, it ought to be possible to frame a minimal version that is neutral between compatibilism and incompatibilism, and which therefore can be accepted by everyone. Peter van Inwagen has advanced the best-known such claim: ‘all philosophers who have thought about deliberation agree on one point: one cannot deliberate about whether to perform a certain act unless one believes it is possible for one to perform it’ (van Inwagen 1983: 154). It is the purpose of this paper to argue that van Inwagen, and the many philosophers who have followed him in this regard, is wrong. (shrink)
Dretske proposes a theory of knowledge in terms of a theory of information, but wishes to deny that empirical knowledge settles the large question of scepticism. This leads him to deny the closure of knowledge under known entailment. In a recent paper Jäger argues that Dretske’s theory of information entails closure for knowledge, ‘at least for the kind of propositions here at issue’ (Jäger 2004:194). If Jäger is right, Dretske is seriously embarrassed and must give something up. In this paper (...) I show that there are two flaws in Jäger’s argument. The principle of informational closure considered by Jäger is incompatible with Dretske’s theory of information, and Jäger’s argument that Dretske is committed to a certain kind of substitution instance of that principle of informational closure is invalid. I propose adequacy conditions on signalled information and use them to motivate a formulation of a general closure principle for signalled information. I show that Dretske’s account of information satisfies the adequacy conditions, but in a way which commits him to an instance of the general closure principle. I argue that Dretske is consequently committed to closure for some cases of knowledge for which he wishes to deny closure. Finally, I sketch how, on the basis of the closure principle to which Dretske is committed, Jäger’s broader argument may yet go through. (shrink)
BAT - the belief in ability thesis - states, roughly, that for an agent to be able rationally to deliberate between two or more alternatives, she must believe that she is metaphysically free to perform each alternative. I show, by way of a counterexample, that BAT is false.
A reading is offered of Carl Hempel’s and Thomas Kuhn’s positions on, and disagreements about, rationality in science that relates these issues to the debate between W.V. Quine and Rudolf Carnap on the analytic/synthetic distinction.
Quantum mechanics has sometimes been taken to be an empiricist (vs. realist) theory. I state the empiricist's argument, then outline a recently noticed type of measurement--protective measurement--that affords a good reply for the realist. This paper is a reply to scientific empiricism (about quantum mechanics), but is neither a refutation of that position, nor an argument in favor of scientific realism. Rather, my aim is to place realism and empiricism on an even score in regards to quantum theory.
Veel Nederlandse woorden (dans, zet, oordeel, assertie, ...) duiden zowel een handeling aan als het resultaat van die handeling. Het fenomeen doet zich in vrijwel alle talen voor en het lijkt erop dat het menselijke cognitieve apparaat er niet zoveel moeite mee heeft te wisselen tussen een statisch perspectief dat resultaten ziet en een dynamisch perspectief dat vooral gericht is op de processen die tot die resultaten geleid hebben. De filosofie heeft meer moeite met het wisselen tussen een statisch en (...) een dynamisch perspectief. Na een veelbelovende start waarbij Heraclites zei dat alles vloeit, maar Zeno en Parmenides bewezen dat alles integendeel stilstaat, lijkt de statische invalshoek toch de overhand te hebben gekregen. Oordelen betreffen statische proposities en redeneren vindt zijn neerslag in statische bewijzen. (shrink)
Since the late 1970s, various attempts have been made to organize the scientific instruments used in research carried out at the University of Toronto into a catalogued, protected, and accessible collection. Unlike other major research universities with which Toronto compares itself, such as Harvard, Yale, Oxford and Cambridge, to name only a few, these efforts have not been successful. The failure to implement even a modest campus-wide program to safeguard the university's material heritage has had unfortunate consequences. Nevertheless, a great (...) deal of material survives. In the following paper, we examine the circumstances of the historical instruments at the University of Toronto. We argue that this university's scientific instruments are an essential piece of its identity and history. Finally, we propose a practical bottom up approach through which the current collection can be stabilized and secured (with new instruments added) so that future students can reflect on today's research with the benefit of a rich and well-documented collection. (shrink)
There is no religion that does not start from the premise that “something is rotten in the Kingdom of Denmark,” to make use of Hamlet’s suggestive expression:mankind has lost its connection with the principle of its being and disharmony has ensued. This state of affairs, that religion claims to remedy, may be deemed toresult from a sense of radical “otherness” symbolized, in the Abrahamic traditions, by the loss of the blissful unity and proximity of terrestrial paradise. In this paper we (...) propose to show that the Islamic concept of ridā, particularly as it has been conceptualized and practiced in Sufism, is none other than both the means and the end of this re-connection with God and human beings as acceptance of “otherness.” The Quranic idea of Divine ridwān provides both the transcendent model and the infinite counterpart of this human virtue of acceptance. (shrink)
Although there is extensive information about why people participate in clinical trials, studies are largely based on quantitative evidence and typically focus on single conditions. Over the last decade investigations into why people volunteer for health research have become increasingly prominent across diverse research settings, offering variable based explanations of participation patterns driven primarily by recruitment concerns. Therapeutic misconception and altruism have emerged as predominant themes in this literature on motivations to participate in health research. This paper contributes to more (...) recent qualitative approaches to understanding how and why people come to participate in various types of health research. We focus on the experience of participating and the meanings research participation has for people within the context of their lives and their health and illness biographies. (shrink)