Today in Goodness

Here’s an early edition of quick hits from the goodness trail…

In this TED presentation, Michael J. Sandel talks about how we can overcome our tendency to turn democratic debates into “ideological food fights.” All of this reminds me that I need to add Sandel’s Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do? to my reading list.

CNN’s Belief Blog hosts a debate between Jim Wallis and Austin Hill over the godliness, or lack of it, of Wall Street.

Wallis’ money quote:

The market now has all the godlike qualities – all-knowing, all-present, all-powerful, even eternal – unable to be resisted or even questioned.

Austin’s money quote:

(T)hese problems have to do with the imperfect nature of human character. People are at times greedy and materialistic, yes, but it makes no sense to claim that “the system” is itself greedy or materialistic.

For what it’s worth, I come down on Wallis’ side, although I think there are other solutions than believing in God. Austin appears to me to be setting up a straw man.

The ethics of the psychologists and physicians who oversaw waterboarding and other “enhanced” interrogation techniques (AKA torture) are called into question.

Finally, goofing around on Wikipedia led me to this entry on Good and Evil.

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