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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Veroli the Virtual Philosopher

Posted by on Tue, Feb 22, 2011 at 10:32 AM


The philosopher and professor Nic Veroli (I have collaborated with him on several occasions in the past), has a new blog that deserves more attention. It's called Imagine Politics, and its reason for being is to develop several ideas and themes in and around the concept of a “neo-communism.” Nic Veroli is a Marxist philosopher, and also an activist who has taught at Seattle University, Bard College, and the prison system in New York State. The final comment on his most recent post, The Communist Decision, says it all:
Today, only communists can be properly called philosophers. The name adequate for those who claim to be philosophers but are not communists is very old indeed. It is: sophist.
It's near impossible for a philosopher to be anything but a Marxist. Being a commie is not simply a matter of theory; it is also consistent with the biological truth of the human organism and sociality. And the business of philosophy is to look for and to situate thinking close to what is most true.


Comments (10) RSS

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Canadian Nurse 10
Charles, do you chuckle as you write your posts? That's how I've always imagined you. Even if you believe every one of them to be your closest expression of truth at the time, you've got to be anticipating the reaction in the comments.
Posted by Canadian Nurse on February 22, 2011 at 8:55 PM · Report this
So, "Philosophers study the truth, Marxism is the truth, therefore Philosophers must be Marxists"? Righto.

If you ask me, advancing a hypothesis by selectively "defining" certain words and drawing rhetorical conclusions from those definitions is more sophistry than philosophy. But that's just me.
Posted by Rex Manning Day on February 22, 2011 at 2:39 PM · Report this
Perfectly true, in the same way that "Only objectivists can be rational" is perfectly true.
Posted by RonK, Seattle on February 22, 2011 at 2:17 PM · Report this
The name adequate for those who can't see beyond their own nose is very old indeed. It is: solipsist.
Posted by gavastik on February 22, 2011 at 1:23 PM · Report this
What do you call a communist who is also a sophist?
Posted by Reg on February 22, 2011 at 12:32 PM · Report this
Certainly it is possible to be focused on the material conditions of human life without endorsing Marxist philosophy specifically. Any school of thought that accuses its competitors of sophistry is probably guilty of the same charge. Marxism today is, after all, much closer to an organized religion than a robust philosophy.
Posted by zarathrusta on February 22, 2011 at 12:31 PM · Report this
"Only communists can be properly called philosophers," my ass. Even among left-leaning political philosophies that's preposterous. What is Habermas then? A poet?

That kind of grandiose and normative over-generalization makes the pragmatic wing of Marxism look like an archaic relic of a mode of philosophy that rightly passed out of favor in the nineteenth century - these global theories and systems of the high German variety.

Posted by Gendun on February 22, 2011 at 12:28 PM · Report this
If you accept the premise that Marxism is the most robust interpretation of the world-text of human affairs, then it follows that only Marxists can be called philosophers. This position doesn't deny that the philosophers of previous ages were unimportant, or even wrong, merely that their contributions are, as it were, concluded. In this era, the reasoning goes, any philosopher who isn't focused on the material conditions of human life in this world is focused on how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.
Posted by thursdaydynamo on February 22, 2011 at 12:21 PM · Report this
You should let your buddy know that we can scientifically measure biological truths now. There is no longer any need for philosophy. Or Marxism.
Posted by cliche on February 22, 2011 at 11:49 AM · Report this
So... Descartes, Aristotle, Wittgenstein-all non-philosophers? I can honestly think of no one who misrepresents philosophy more than Charles Mudede. Certainly there is no bigger sophist.
Posted by zarathrusta on February 22, 2011 at 11:44 AM · Report this

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