The Open Lifespan answer to Jonathan Floyd’s political philosophy organising question: how should we live? Tens of arguments

This is the 4th post inspired by Jonathan Floyd’s book, Is political philosophy impossible? that started a new methodology (paradigm, revolution?) called normative behaviourism (NB). The posts so far:

Open Lifespan and Green political philosophy as single-trend approaches; reading Jonathan Floyd

The Open Lifespan answer to Jonathan Floyd’s political philosophy organising question: how should we live? Preparations

Blind spot of academic political philosophy: not recognising health as a political incentive and healthy longevity as a political goal

Floyd has used NB in his book to argue for social-liberal-democracy (SLD) as the (only) convincing and meaningful answer to the organising question of political philosophy: how should we live?

Our post today is the most relevant one concerning Open Lifespan, the main reason I studied Floyd’s book in the first place. Today, I’m going to demonstrate through a series of arguments that Open Lifespan as a political philosophy also picks out social-liberal-democracy as a compelling (convincing) and politically determinate (meaningful) answer to the foundational question of political philosophy, Floyd poses: how should we live?

Briefly put, the Open Lifespan answer to the question of how should we live: We should live indefinitely longer and healthier as by doing so we ‘exponentially’ enhance all the core elements of social-liberal-democracy (SLD): making it more democratic, more liberal, and more social (egalitarian). Continue reading “The Open Lifespan answer to Jonathan Floyd’s political philosophy organising question: how should we live? Tens of arguments”

Blind spot of academic political philosophy: not recognising health as a political incentive and healthy longevity as a political goal

This post is the continuation of The Open Lifespan answer to Jonathan Floyd’s political philosophy organising question: how should we live? Preparations post and takes up the story where the earlier one ended.

On the other hand, the reason I gave it a separate, focused title is that this is also a standalone, and I think quite relevant, piece in terms of the political philosophy Open Lifespan is aspiring for.

Introducing Health as a political incentive NB style, examples

As mentioned earlier, Floyd introduces 2 behaviourist measures to judge, justify success of existing (or past) political systems: plainly put, the more disincentives to political insurgence and crime a system enables the more successful it’s going to be.

‘minimising inequality, by way of a more social or egalitarian set of policies, minimises crime’

p169, Is political philosophy impossible? Jonathan Floyd

So less crime according to Floyd is the behavioural expression of the political preferences of people who do not commit crime due to the egalitarian policies implemented by the institutions of the political system they live in. Notice the negative, indirect aspect here, the inference is that if you do not commit crime it means you approve the system more.

My main suggestion is that ‘public and personal’ health considerations are as much a political incentive (or disincentive, see later) already today and due to increasing life expectancy are increasingly become so in the near future. Continue reading “Blind spot of academic political philosophy: not recognising health as a political incentive and healthy longevity as a political goal”

The Open Lifespan answer to Jonathan Floyd’s political philosophy organising question: how should we live? Preparations

Introduction

This is my second, and far more relevant mini-study, that takes inspiration from Jonathan Floyd’s book ‘Is political philosophy impossible?’. In the first one, called Open Lifespan and Green political philosophy as single-trend approaches; reading Jonathan Floyd I tried to carve out some space within political philosophy to single trend approaches, like the philosophy of longevity and green political philosophy. 

With the current study, I’m going to put Floyd’s study to a much better and more detailed use. My final aim is to demonstrate through a series of arguments that Open Lifespan as a political philosophy picks out and relies on social-liberal-democracy as a compelling (convincing) and politically determinate (meaningful) answer to the foundational question of political philosophy, Floyd poses: how should we live?

Briefly put, the Open Lifespan answer to the question of ‘How should we live?’: indefinitely longer and healthier and an Open Life Society would ‘exponentially’ enhance all the core elements of social-liberal-democracy (SLD): it makes it more democratic, more liberal, and more social (egalitarian).  Continue reading “The Open Lifespan answer to Jonathan Floyd’s political philosophy organising question: how should we live? Preparations”

Mark Johnston’s Surviving Death scenario is like an Anthology Series, unlike Open Lifespan

Earlier I argued that indefinitely long healthy Open Life, ie. Open Lifespan needs an open narrative and that this narrative is already something most of us accustomed to due to TV series as a prevalent form of recreation. 

I have also used the Open Lifespan thought experiment to pinpoint a deficiency in Mark Johnston’s ethical argumentation using the personite concept. Reading Johnston’s Surviving Death last year was a highlight of my philosophy studies last year and my plan is to investigate his deep argumentation to dig out new positions for Open Lifespan. The positions I work out are going to be likely highly critical concerning Surviving Death. 

Today is my first light encounter with Surviving Death in the context of Open Lifespan and it will help us show an analogy to indicate what Open Lifespan is not.  Continue reading “Mark Johnston’s Surviving Death scenario is like an Anthology Series, unlike Open Lifespan”

Ecolongevity: connecting Open Lifespan with Ecological Thought

Interesting thing happened with ecological thought and green political philosophy in the last couple of years: it became mainstream. It might have something to do with all the strange earthly things lots of humans experienced in these years from heat waves to droughts, from floods to smogs. 

Earlier I posted several posts and mini-studies to connect ecological thought to the main study of this book blog, the philosophical investigation of longevity. 

Today I’d like to debut the term ecolongevity to refer to these connections between Open Lifespan philosophy and Ecological Thought and to summarise some of them. The scope of connections is stretching from the theoretical, conceptual, aesthetical level to practical and political philosophy. Since it is  summary, the pointers are brief, some of them not detailed so far will be elaborated later.  Continue reading “Ecolongevity: connecting Open Lifespan with Ecological Thought”

Open Lifespan and Green political philosophy as single-trend approaches; reading Jonathan Floyd

Jonathan Floyd’s book ‘Is political philosophy impossible?’, published in 2017, is trying to break the current, mainstream mentalist deadlock within political philosophy by offering a normative behaviourist approach. No, am not going to tell you now what are these things, as I will deal with Floyd’s study in a series of posts (just like I did with Nussbaum’s First capability). Floyd’s approach is relevant enough for Open Lifespan to criticise it and use its concept, and frame our topic within its thoroughly argumented, well defined and conveniently narrow world.

The book’s starting point is a criticism of ways political philosophy can be defined to make way for Floyds’ own convincing suggestion to define the same topic with 3 well-formed questions. Today I only care about the ways of definitions he offers as mainstream starting points to make a critical remark about another approach missing from this inventory. This is the approach that opens the door for Open Lifespan and Green political philosophy to qualify as political theories. Continue reading “Open Lifespan and Green political philosophy as single-trend approaches; reading Jonathan Floyd”

Towards a Grey New Deal: Longevity World Resolution

Ecological thinking and politics had a long way to go, but longevity thinking and politics has an even longer way to go. The good news is that ecological thinking and action provides a template for longevity thinking and action.

Many of us heard about the Green New Deal proposal by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ed Markey & co., dated back this past February, less than a month ago. I doubt that most of those who heard about it, actually read the foundational document. I read it and you can read it here. Technically (legally), it is a resolution.

This Green New Deal document is a trigger and inspiration for me to start working on a foundational document on World Longevity I call the Grey New Deal.

It’s not just grey as in grey hair but more importantly it is grey as in ‘grey area’. It is currently uncertain how far we are going to be able to push human health- and lifespan with the help of biomedical and any other kind of technology. Continue reading “Towards a Grey New Deal: Longevity World Resolution”

Capabilities and Open Lifespan, an HDCA 2019 Conference submission

The Human Development & Capability Association is the umbrella academic association of the human development and capability approach. This approach has been established by an economist (Amartya Sen) and a philosopher (Martha Nussbaum) and hence it represents a growing body of multi-disciplinary research covering not just the 2 foundational disciplines but other humanities as well. What I especially like about it, is its policy forming focus and political, pro-active attitude, probably coming more from its economic than its philosophical roots. Usually academic philosophical schools of thoughts don’t have such active membership.

I have already used the Capability Approach in my Open Lifespan studies publishing 3 posts here. Generally I’m contacting all the living philosophers whose work I’ve been using in my Open Lifespan studies and so far I detect a state of blissful ignorance with some notable exceptions. The biggest such exception was Martha Nussbaum who got back to me suggesting to submit a paper for the upcoming HDCA conference. Besides this we have also engaged into a quick back and forth correspondence, helping me a great deal. This is exemplary and surprising as Professor Nussbaum is the most famous and probably the busiest out of the philosophers I have contacted so far. So my submission below is honouring her suggestion. Thank you. I’m not holding my breath in terms of acceptance of this submission on part of the conference organisers though, since my topic is stretching the limits of this approach.

Capabilities and Open Lifespan; Martha Nussbaum’s problematic first capability concerning the end of a human life of normal length

Keywords: longevity, aging, technology, lifespan, maximum capabilities Continue reading “Capabilities and Open Lifespan, an HDCA 2019 Conference submission”

Martha Nussbaum’s problematic first capability: Is ‘being alive’ a capability or a functioning? Part 3

In my earlier 2 posts related to the Capabilities approach I tried to interpret ‘normal’ in the phrasing of the first capability:

Life. Being able to live to the end of a human life of normal length;

Martha Nussbaum in Capabilities as fundamental entitlements: Sen and social justice

First using statistical/demographic concepts as ‘average’ or ‘typical’ in

Martha Nussbaum’s problematic first capability: what is ‘the end of a human life of normal length’? Part 1 

then tried ‘acceptable’ in

Martha Nussbaum’s problematic first capability: what is ‘the end of a human life of normal length’? Part 2

and I’ve failed spectacularly in all 3 attempts. So I tend this as a criticism as it seems something is not kosher with the first capability concerning lifespan.

 Today I step back and ask a fundamental question about life and lifespan (the concerns of the ‘first capability’) related to the basic concepts of this approach. These 2 concepts are ‘capabilities’ and ‘functionings’. Continue reading “Martha Nussbaum’s problematic first capability: Is ‘being alive’ a capability or a functioning? Part 3”