Unlike my ancient predecessor, this Tullius hasn't had his hands chopped off. With hands attached I offer my thoughts on philosophy, religion, politics, and whatever else I find worth mentioning. I'm conservative religiously and politically (though I have some serious libertarian leanings). I value reason and freedom but also traditions and "Oldthink." I relish being on the wrong side of history when history is wrong--part of a philosopher's job is to be unpopular.
A few weeks ago, I was very much amused by the sight of anti-Wal-Mart protests in Manhattan — where there is no Wal-Mart, and where, if Bill de Blasio et al. have their way, there never will be. Why? Because we’re too enlightened to let our poor neighbors pay lower prices. The head-clutchingly expensive shops up on Fifth and Madison avenues? No protests. Rather, they were bustling with the same class of people behind the protests, people busily accumulating — or at least making like Holly Golightly in the window at Tiffany’s.
Here in Columbia County, Ark., a not-especially-prosperous locale behind the Pine Curtain where the median household income is about half the national average and where a few twists and turns down county roads find you in a world of shacks and chained-up dogs out of a Snuffy Smith cartoon, nobody is boycotting the local Wal-Mart. In fact, the locals seem rather fond of this purported outpost of economic exploitation and wicked capitalist blah-blah-blah. And it is not difficult to understand why: It is an important part of local commerce in a community that is hungry for enterprise.