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Writings of J. Todd Ring: Empiricism and Dogmatism

Or, Evidence-based opinion versus ideological fundamentalism There is a major difference between evidence-based opinion and opinion-based evidence. The former is empirical, and sane, the latter, dogmatic, and either insane or dishonest. There are always a few people, many in fact, who adopt an ideology first, then mold the facts to fit their ideology. This is . . . → Read More: Writings of J. Todd Ring: Empiricism and Dogmatism

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Empiricism and Dogmatism

Or, Evidence-based opinion versus ideological fundamentalism There is a major difference between evidence-based opinion and opinion-based evidence. The former is empirical, and sane, the latter, dogmatic, and either insane or dishonest. There are always a few people, many in fact, who adopt an ideology first, then mold the facts to fit their ideology. This is . . . → Read More: Writings of J. Todd Ring: Empiricism and Dogmatism

Scripturient: Fortuna: Why Plans Fail

Niccolo Machiavelli used two words in his book, The Prince, to describe the factors that influenced events. In English these are virtue or character (virtu), fortune or chance (fortuna). Only virtue is internal – our nature – and although it manifests as voluntary action, it can only be somewhat, but not entirely controlled.* The other . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Fortuna: Why Plans Fail

Scripturient: Two New Posts on the Municipal Machiavelli

I added two posts today to my blog about Niccolo Machiavelli, the 16th century political philosopher. These are: Machiavelli: The Graphic Novel – a short piece about the recent publication of Don MacDonald’s exciting new graphic book. and Atheist Machiavelli? A longer piece on the debate about whether Machiavelli was atheist, pagan or Christian. Enjoy! . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Two New Posts on the Municipal Machiavelli

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Reward or Punishment?

Which works best in compelling behaviour of your subordinates: the carrot or the stick? Science has come up with the answer in a new study about how to get results from people. Here’s a little piece I posted about the research on the Municipal Machiavelli today, in part based on a recent article in Science . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Reward or Punishment?

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: The Soviet Machiavelli

I’ve written a new piece for my Municipal Machiavelli blog about the late (1982) Mikhail Suslov, the “Soviet Machiavelli.” You can read it here: www.ianchadwick.com/machiavelli/the-soviet-machiavelli/ Suslov was the power behind the Soviet throne; in fact behind several thrones. From joining the Party in 1921, he rose to the top echelon. He was appointed National Party . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: The Soviet Machiavelli

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Montaigne and Machiavelli

Michel de Montaigne mentioned Machiavelli only twice in his Essays, both in Book Two. This tells us he was aware of the latter, but not whether he was intimately familiar with his works. Nor does it tell us which of Machiavelli’s writings he is referring to (by this date, all of Machiavelli’s major works were . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Montaigne and Machiavelli

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: New post on the Municipal Machiavelli

I’ve written a short post that I trust will serve as an introduction to a longer piece I plan to write. It’s on the letter of Quintus Tullius Cicero to his brother on how to win an election (written circa 64 BCE). You can read it here: ianchadwick.com/machiavelli/quintus-ciceros-letter-on-elections/ I will be working on a more . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: New post on the Municipal Machiavelli

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Machiavelli and the Elizabethans

In 1555, Bishop Stephen Gardiner wrote a treatise to King Phillip II of Spain, in which he borrowed (aka plagiarized) extensively from Machiavelli’s The Prince and The Discourses. Gardiner did not credit Machiavelli or attribute any of his quotes, but rather copied some of Machiavelli’s content verbatim or very closely. This was less than two . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Machiavelli and the Elizabethans

Susan on the Soapbox: The Alberta Energy Board: What the PC Government learned and failed to learn from Machiavelli

On the same day that the Health Minister unceremoniously fired the Alberta Health Services board for refusing to revoke $3.2 million in bonuses, the Energy Minister announced the appointment of the Alberta Energy Board.

Hmmm. I wonder whether in a year or two this newly minted board will find themselves pilloried in the press as . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: The Alberta Energy Board: What the PC Government learned and failed to learn from Machiavelli

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Not the expected blog post, I’m afraid

Sorry to disappoint those readers who expected this to be a blog post on ukuleles, tequila or our beautiful Mexican Sister City, Zihuatanejo (“Zee-hwa” for those in the know). I refer, of course, to comments in the recent parody video, in … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: The Art of Worldly Wisdom

Published in 1637, The Art of Worldly Wisdom is a collection of 300 aphorisms about life, behaviour, politics, morality, faith, philosophy and society. One comment, on Amazon.ca called it, somewhat unfairly to Machiavelli, “Machiavelli with a soul.” I have been … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: The Municipal Machiavelli is online

I’ve spent much of the past few days putting online my book in which I assess and rewrite Niccolo Machiavelli’s famous (or infamous) work, The Prince, in a WordPress format. I wrote this book earlier this year, but was unable to find a publisher … Continue reading →

Alberta Diary: Budget crisis? Civil service raises? Go pop a Valium, Smith!

Hey Marge! Danielle Smith says there’s a budget crisis and this is no time to be giving raises to civil servants! Marge? Typical Albertans may not be exactly as illustrated this summer. Below: Danielle Smith.

It’s hard to imagine all that many Albertans getting their knickers in a twist at the thought of . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Budget crisis? Civil service raises? Go pop a Valium, Smith!