Home

I have at least four great passions in life: philosophy, classical music, preservation of the environment, and concern for the welfare of animals—particularly an opposition to factory farms. This web site will be one place I'll share those passions.

Though my main philosophical interest is Ethics, I've also devoted lots of time to Philosophy of Mind, Metaphysics, and Epistemology with one of my first publications called "Foundations Without Certainty". 

As a Harvard undergraduate I focused on the humanities, particularly philosophy, and unlike many current students I had no thoughts about making money. Nevertheless, it turned out that philosophy sharpens your mind for making financial decisions, and though Wittgenstein’s popularity at that time made me worry I wouldn't become a professor, I succeeded, and my wife and I ended up making a lot more money from real estate. We started small, and profited from buying old apartment houses near the UC Berkeley campus, furnishing them and renting them to students. In fact, we've made so much I now believe that owing to the law of diminishing returns we should be paying more taxes, and compensate for this by making charitable donations particularly for opposition to factory farms for animals. 

In the 1970s I became increasingly concerned with the threat of global warming, published Obligations to Future Generations in 1978, and am working now on a follow-up. Back then it served as a turning point. Although Al Gore's Earth in the Balance was far more sophisticated scientifically, it came considerably later. While the threat is more obvious today, the "conservative" party's chief representative wants us to focus instead on creating jobs without noting that they could be devoted to conserving our environment for future generations. Unfortunately, since neither future generations nor animals can speak for themselves we must do so for them.

It is worth adding that while billionaires could contribute a great deal to these causes most of them are governed instead by their desire to exceed the wealth of their rivals. Happiness depends far more on the acquisition of aesthetic tastes, etc. The need to have a meaningful objective in your life is in part to allay the fear of death.

Try to get rid of the disagreeable feeling of anger for your own sake, and from its expression for the sake of others.