Archive for the ‘Ipse Dixit’ Category

The theory of everything

4 marzo 2016 Lascia un commento

“Every theory of the world that is at all powerful and covers a large domain of phenomena carries immanent within itself its own caricature. If it is to give a satisfactory explanation of a wide range of events in the world in a wide variety of circumstances, a theory necessarily must contain come logically very powerful element that is flexible enough to be applicable in so many situations. Yet the very logical power of such a system is also its greatest weakness, for a theory that can explain everything explains nothing. It ceases to be a theory of the contingent world and becomes instead a vacuous metaphysics that generates not only all possible worlds, but all conceivable ones. The narrow line that separates a genuinely fruitful and powerful theory from its sterile caricature is crossed over and over again by vulgarizers who seize upon the powerful explanatory element and. by using indiscriminately, destroy its usefulness. In doing so, however, they reveal underlying weakness in the theory themselves, which can lead to their reformulation.

This element of immanent caricature is certainly present in three theoretical structures that have had immense effects on twentieth-century bourgeois thought: Marxism, Freudianism, and Darwinism. Marx’s historical materialism has been caricatured by the vulgar economism that attempts to explain the smallest detail of human history as a direct consequence of economic forces. Freud’s ideas of sublimation, transference, reversal, and repression have been interpreted to explain any form of overt behavior as a direct or transformed manifestation of any arbitrary psycological cause. In Darwinism the element that is both central to the evolutionary world view and yet so powerful that can destroy Darwinism as a testable theory is adaptation.”

Richard Levins and Richard Lewontin, The Dialectical Biologist

Bailout Referendum

29 giugno 2015 Lascia un commento

It is hard to advise Greeks how to vote on 5 July. Neither alternative – approval or rejection of the troika’s terms – will be easy, and both carry huge risks.

A yes vote would mean depression almost without end. Perhaps a depleted country – one that has sold off all of its assets, and whose bright young people have emigrated – might finally get debt forgiveness; perhaps, having shrivelled into a middle-income economy, Greece might finally be able to get assistance from the World Bank. All of this might happen in the next decade, or perhaps in the decade after that.

By contrast, a no vote would at least open the possibility that Greece, with its strong democratic tradition, might grasp its destiny in its own hands. Greeks might gain the opportunity to shape a future that, though perhaps not as prosperous as the past, is far more hopeful than the unconscionable torture of the present.

I know how I would vote.

(Joseph E. Stiglitz, premio Nobel per l’economia)


7 aprile 2015 Lascia un commento

“Questo modello economico ha anche mutato molti di noi come individui, costringendoci ad accellerare, privandoci delle radici e smaterializzandoci proprio come ha fatto col caitale finanziario”.

Naomi Klein

Da pubblico a privato

29 gennaio 2015 Lascia un commento

Proprietà privata: def “Quel dominio unico e dispotico di un uomo sopra una cosa a totale esclusione di tutti gli altri”.

Ugo Grozio

Uomini e maiali

25 novembre 2014 Lascia un commento

” Gli animali da fuori guardavano il maiale e poi l’uomo, poi l’uomo e ancora il maiale: ma era ormai impossibile dire chi era l’uno e chi l’altro”

George Orwell

Abolite l’articolo 18!

18 ottobre 2014 Lascia un commento

“L’Italia è uno splendido paese, a noi farebbe molto piacere fare affari con voi. Purtroppo, avete un altissimo tasso di corruzione, ed è questo che vi rende poco attraenti per il business internazionale”.

Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Emiro del Qatar, in visita di Stato in Italia nell’aprile 2012

Riforme costituzionali

24 luglio 2014 Lascia un commento

“Le epoche di massima oppressione sono quasi sempre epoche in cui si discorre molto di cose grandi ed elevate. In epoche simili ci vuole coraggio per parlare di cose basse e meschine come il vitto e l’alloggio dei lavoratori, mentre tutt’intorno si va strepitando che ciò che conta è lo spirito di sacrificio.”
Bertolt Brecht