Happy New Year, everybody. I hope your 2013 was a good one. 2014 is sure to be just as full of wars, state surveillance, religious tension, global power games, political shenanigans, corporate tomfoolery, society-altering technological innovation, and issues which give rise to exceptionally complex questions about gender, sexuality, race, and class - so a good year for those of us who like to argue about what's wrong with the world and how it could be different!
Speaking of different, I'm going to try something out this year (or at least for the first few months of this year, or until I decide it's a bad idea). In addition to the usual free-form discussions, I would like to have one table which is devoted to a specific topic/question. As usual, anyone is welcome to join in (or bow out) whenever they want, and there won't be any assigned readings or other formalities (although there might be a moderator of some kind), but the issue being discussed will remain somewhere within a certain ballpark.
For this upcoming event, I'd like to discuss the question of punishment. Why are people punished? What does it mean to deserve punishment? Who decides which punishments are appropriate, and who carries out the punishment? If you're interested in talking about this, come join me when I show up (I might be a little late).
Boilerplate: For anyone totally new - For the most part the group doesn't have any specific topic or moderation, it's just a bunch of drunk, very smart people talking about random philosophical stuff, so it basically runs itself. Just show up, sit down wherever there's a free seat, and join in (Also, feel free to move around over the course of the evening. There tend to be five or six different conversations going on at once, and it can often be interesting to see what other people are talking about). I made a reservation under the name Michael S, as usual. Just ask the waitstaff to direct you to us.