Tuesday 21 November 2017

My former Cree Teacher Advocates for Cree Street-Signs.

Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCvJuFE0POM
Solomon Ratt was one of my professors at FNU, and I talked about this issue with him (street-signs, no-smoking-signs, etc.) ALL THE TIME.  Part of my argument was to point out that the Canadian government had signage in Chinese for Chinese neighborhoods ("Chinatown" streets)… but why didn't we ever see Cree/Ojibwe on street signs?  I have no idea if my kvetching about this (years ago) at FNU was part of the impetus toward his formally lobbying on the issue, but I would note: he'd been there (as a professor of Cree) for many, many years… and he didn't take this on earlier.

Yes, Aristotle really meant "Election By Lottery".

My recent video titled, "Aristotle's philosophy (in/and my life)" resulted in a few gasps of amazement amongst my Patreon supporters.  Can it be that "election by lot" really means a sort of lottery?  Could it be that I'm misreading something somewhere along the line?

Note the text quoted in the image above, but, also, to quote the lowly Wikipedia: "The Athenians believed sortition to be democratic but not elections and used complex procedures with purpose-built allotment machines (kleroteria) to avoid the corrupt practices used by oligarchs to buy their way into office."  And yes, indeed, you will find, "sortition" is another word for election at random —by lot or lottery.


Both Aristotle and Herodotus (one of the earliest writers on democracy) emphasize selection by lot as a test of democracy, "The rule of the people has the fairest name of all, equality (isonomia), and does none of the things that a monarch does. The lot determines offices, power is held accountable, and deliberation is conducted in public." (Quoting Herodotus)

Thursday 2 November 2017

A Letter to My Next Lawyer (& A Current Summary of My Divorce Case)

Hello, I am in the middle of a divorce (in Nice / Côte d'Azur) and I'm seeking a new lawyer.

1. The current situation of my divorce is really very simple (although the prior history may be complex).  I do not believe there are any special challenges for a law firm (more details below).

The purpose of this message is to communicate a few simple/reassuring things (so that you can decide if you would like to become my lawyer or not).

2. I do not have any unreasonable expectations from my lawyer / law firm (I think that every lawyer is probably concerned about having a fussy / implacable client).  I do not have any unreasonable expectations about the legal process, generally (although I need guidance on some strategic decisions in future, from my lawyers).