The Philosophy Fad: Quoting Marcus Aurelius Doesn't Make You a Stoic

Tere’s a strange irony that these ancient philosophers are hitting it big in an affluent place like Silicon Valley. As the BBC article notes, “the Stoics generally took a dim view of huge wealth.” 

My intention here is not to criticize anyone trying to take to heart Socrates’s wise maxim that the “unexamined life is not worth living,” but I can’t help but think this self-help fad is a first cousin to the “mindfulness” craze that swept Silicon Valley in the early 2010s.

Johnny Cash's Gospel versus the Temptations of Nationalism

When you think of the music of the Man in Black, you mostly think of the music where Cash speaks up for the poor, the struggling and the disenfranchised, songs that “beat with the rhythm of love and social justice." But Cash was an outspoken patriot and he loved America, and his patriotism often made the gospel messages found in his music vulnerable to distortion and misappropriation, in exactly the same way that patriotism and nationalism of all sorts can distort and twist the gospel.

What's Wrong with the Weed Biz? It Harms People

Promoting entrepreneurship in struggling communities is a laudable goal, but you have to question the wisdom of infusing a community already “disproportionately impacted” by the war on drugs with state-subsidized drug dealers. Encouraging and incentivizing residents to use marijuana is the last thing these communities need, particularly from the state.