George Martin Fell Brown – Marxism and the Philosophy of Science

Link to a review by George Martin Fell Brown of Helena Sheehan’s book Marxism and the Philosophy of Science: A Critical History (1985/2018):

“Book Review: Marxism and the Philosophy of Science”

 

This review does suffer from a bit of a Trotskyist (anti-Stalinist) bias, but it still provides a useful historical overview.

Christine MacDonald – I Went to a Climate Change Denial Conference

Link to an article by Christine MacDonald:

“I Went to a Climate Change Denial Conference. It Made Even Less Sense Than You’d Think.”

 

This article was published on the magazine In These Times’ web site.  The publication is populist, meaning that it constantly strives to demonize its political opponents and construct an enemy.  Aside from that, what the article explains about climate change deniers is that they are engaged in what Jacques Lacan called “university discourse” in order to defend a particular social structureBruce Fink explained this concept of “university discourse” in his book The Lacanian Subject (1995):

“the university is an arm of capitalist production (or of the ‘military-industrial complex,’ as it was called . . . ), suggesting that the truth hidden behind the university discourse is, after all, the master signifier.  Knowledge here interrogates surplus value (the product of capitalist economies, which takes the form of a loss or subtraction of value from the worker) and rationalizes or justifies it.”  (p. 132).

 

“Working in the service of the master signifier, more or less any kind of argument will do, as long as it takes on the guide of reason and rationality.” (p. 133).

 

Populists generally avoid getting into these issues, because to do so would tend to reveal the large degree of agreement between them and the political far right.  But this article is still a good example of how the right doesn’t care about making “good” arguments as long as they serve their desired (if unstated) social arrangement.

Saritha Prabhu – The Coming Civil War in the Democratic Party Won’t Be Pretty

Link to an article by Saritha Prabhu:

“The Coming Civil War in the Democratic Party Won’t Be Pretty”

 

Bonus links: “Was I right to back Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton? Absolutely” (“by the way, the proper name of this ‘civil war’ is class struggle”) and “Democrats and the Politics of Change” (“the Democrat’s aversion to left political programs is more probably stated as deference to existing power. This is the central impediment to democratic action within the Democratic Party. The Democrat’s fear isn’t of losing elections, but of winning them with a mandate to upend the existing order.”) and “CNN’s Attempted Hit Job on Sanders and Warren” (excellent summary of corporate media advocacy for one side in this class war within the Democratic party) and “The Big Lie Democratic Centrists Are Telling About 2018” (the prose is a little hard to follow but this puts context around some tactics of the class war being fought within the Democratic party) and “MSNBC’s Anti-Sanders Bias Makes It Forget How to Do Math” and “Here’s the Evidence Corporate Media Say Is Missing of WaPo Bias Against Sanders” and “Truth Is Many Democrat ‘Moderates’ Prefer Trump to Sanders in 2020 White House Race” and Right Turn: The Decline of the Democrats and the Future of American Politics (1987)

John Molyneux – How Fast is the Climate Changing?

Link to an article by John Molyneux:

“How Fast is the Climate Changing?”

 

Bonus quote:

“That the capitalist class is most interested in protecting its power, position, wealth and way of life means that the struggle to adapt to and mitigate the impacts of global warming is a class struggle. It is a struggle for power — not a struggle over morality or individual consumer choices. The capitalist class holds out the promise of ‘more of the same’ because that is the way that it can continue to accumulate wealth while working people get the same raw deal of exploitation, racism and oppression that they have for centuries.”

Jodi Dean, “Climate Change Is Class War”

See also “Global Warming and U.S. National Security Diplomacy” and “The Discovery and Rediscovery of Metabolic Rift”