The original Hawks and Handsaws

In my very first entry to this blog, when discussing what led me to start Hawks and Handsaws, I mentioned that I had made a previous attempt at blogging once upon a time.

Some years ago, I actually did start a blog under an anonymous identity, and wrote a total of three posts for an entirely empty room before losing interest. After that, I pretty much gave up on the idea.
Since apparently I've declared summer of 2018 to be Blast From The Past Summer, displaying a good bit of my philosophy-related university writing on here for us all to look back on, I figure why not explain a little more about that first attempt at blogging and put up some of what I wrote there as well. After all, there are a few people out there reading what I write now, which is a few more readers than I had back during my first attempt. Read more...

A second-order confirmation bias

I'm going to begin by diving right into a super current politically charged topic that one hears discussed quite a lot nowadays, although this is far from a motivating example for me and the idea I'm using it to lead into has been in my mind for a long time. This particular political topic feels way overused, but the potential biases involved are so clear to demonstrate that I can't resist. Anyway, let's just start there and get it over with.

So, how 'bout that Trump and his dealings with Russia.

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The good, the bad, and the emergent neutral

During parts of college and early graduate school, I got mildly involved with some atheist/agnostic/some-general-category-of-nonbeliever clubs at my universities, primarily out of an appetite for hanging out with other students who wanted to ponder the kind of controversies that most interested me at the time. At around the tail end of this period, when I was preparing to extricate myself from my second university's atheist society for good, I was befriended by a young evangelical Christian who was about to leave the university and start a full-time career in missionary work. His recent approach had been to reach across the aisle and engaging with his ideological opponents: the campus atheists. Read more...

My evolving views of (American) politics

First, a "meta" note. I'm pleased that I got some substantial ideas down in writing here last year, however imperfectly, but I feel that I went very slightly astray of what I originally envisioned for this blog. Therefore, I've made a resolution to steer my writing in a direction away from posts on mostly-impersonal abstract rationality concepts and towards posts on more concrete and personal issues. Read more...