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July 27, 2016




As someone who looks up to you intellectually, I'm a little bit disturbed by this recent turn in your writing. First you throw your lot in with Hillary Clinton, a truly terrible person whose policies fly in the face of everything you've ever stood for. You justify this on the basis of your fear of Donald Trump, whom you fear would be an unparalleled disaster as President (I'm skeptical that he could manage to do more damage than George Bush Jr, but whatever). The upshot of that post appeared to be that from now on you would jettison your principles and do whatever was necessary to sway the election in favour of HRC.

Now you have written two more essays: one accusing Trump of being an actual subversive foreign agent and then, when a very careful and knowledgeable piece appears in the NYRB debunking your earlier claim, a second saying in so many words: "well maybe he isn't an agent of Putin but he might as well be so my point stands".

This is a style of argument that has a very ugly history and it makes me worry that the principles you have let fall by the wayside in your newfound zeal for American electoral politics include intellectual honesty and coherence. Look, we all think Trump is terrible. I'm sure that your readers won't be voting for him, and I'm sure that those who live in swing states and who vote will probably vote for HRC. I'm not sure what you're trying to accomplish, and in any case I don't think it's worth stooping to this level to accomplish it.

A longtime reader


Justin Halldor Smith, please stick to Philosophy. Your Leftist political rant is becoming annoying.

Mike Jablonski

Please continue as you are. I believe that many appreciate your perspective.

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