Category Archives: Rationality

Book Review: Square One

Square One: The Foundations of Knowledge by Steve Patterson The first of a series of planned philosophy books by Steve Patterson, who runs the Patterson in Pursuit podcast that I listen to, Square One is about the ultimate grounding of … Continue reading

Posted in Logic, Rationality, Reviews

From a contradiction you can prove anything

Premise: 0. P ∧ P’ Theorem 1. P (simplification from 0) 2. P’ (simplification from 0) 3. P ∨ M (addition from 1) 4. M (disjunctive syllogism from 2 and 3) Q.E.D. Or in words: P and not P are … Continue reading

Posted in Logic, Rationality

Book Review: Doing Good Better

Doing Good Better: How Effective Altruism Can Help You Make a Difference by William MacAskill Effective altruism is a movement dedicated to applying rationality and scientific (particularly economic) thinking to charitable causes. The cynical view of classical charitable giving is that … Continue reading

Posted in Rationality

Book Review: The Myth of the Rational Voter

The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies by Bryan Caplan Given that most voters aren’t well informed on complicated matters like international trade or health economics, why isn’t democracy a total disaster? One answer is that as … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Rationality, Reviews

Book Review: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas Kuhn Any exposure to the philosophy of science will at some point cover Kuhn’s Structure of Scientific Revolutions, somewhere between Popper’s falsificationism and Feyerabend’s methodological anarchism. In part the book is a response to … Continue reading

Posted in Rationality, Reviews, Science (general)

Book Review: The Dictator’s Handbook

The Dictator’s Handbook: Why Bad Behavior is Almost Always Good Politics by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and Alistair Smith In a previous academic book, The Logic of Political Survival, the authors and others presented arguments in favor of a political model called … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Rationality, Reviews

When gods play chess

A few months ago I browsed through a book called Beyond Deep Blue: Chess in the Stratosphere. Now, to put things in perspective, in the past ten years I think I’ve played one game of chess, so I’m probably in … Continue reading

Posted in Rationality, Science (general)