May 11, 2008

Remember this for next year

On Mother's Day, it's hard to get a brunch reservation; and on Father's Day, it's hard to get a tee time. So, just switch days and celebrate Father's Day in May and Mother's Day in June.

Interestingly, doing that violates Kant's Categorical Imperative, which is a sort of Teutonic philosopher's version of the Golden Rule ("Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law"). Yet, if everybody switched months, then we'd be right back where we started. But if you switch, then you're a lot better off and everybody else is a tiny bit better off.

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer


Graham said...

To satisfy the Golden Rule, toss a coin and switch if it's heads.

TGGP said...

I never thought much of Kant. He said that if you know person A is going to murder person B and A asks you where B is, you have to tell the truth. Screw that, crazy German dude.

Anonymous said...

Yet if you generalize the rule (like this, e.g.: "Prioritize and schedule your activities such that the opportunity costs you perceive to be inherent in your plans will not outweigh the gratification you derive from those activities"), it is perfectly compatible with the categorical imperative and indeed illustrates why the categorical imperative is without a sound alternative. The categorical imperative only breaks down if you do insist on treating others in ways you would not want to be treated yourself. It only says that it is probably a good thing if the mother and father in this example both share the same kind of flexibility (or inflexibility, as the case may be), as otherwise they might get into too many conflicts for a partnership to endure.

Darwin's Sh*tlist said...

It'll never work. Fathers would go for it wholeheartedly. Mothers, never.

Anonymous said...

The mothers in our group picked a deserted place at half the cost.

Kent Gatewood

Argent Paladin said...

That's why I am considering celebrating Orthodox Christmas. A week later lets you take advantage of lots of after Christmas sales, and you have a week longer to procrastinate.

Reff said...

re anonymous - but prioritizing the rule according to both a) your local perception of cost, and b) a maximin utility metric pretty much defeases the idea that you are using the categorical imperative at all, right? not universal (local); not ontological (consequentialist).

i'm not saying that the categorical imperative is a viable meta-ethical framework, but your solution is a straightforward utilitarian collapse.

Anonymous said...

Darwin is right. You've never read, "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" have you, Steve? Of course, you've been married a long time...

Michael said...

When I was a kid, my family had Xmas celebration on Xmas day itself. All those pains in the ass: shopping for a tree, presents, etc, alongside everyone else ... Anyway, once I hit about 15 (youngest kid in the family) we started celebrating Xmas in mid-January. Much nicer. No crowds, fun and private ... We got to skip the brouhaha around Dec. 25 ... Nice! Recommended! Obviously you can't be too sentimental about dates ... said...

Please visit
and consider signing the petition re: Vargas
Monday, 12 May 2008
Sign this petition

In the 2007, the 'artist' Guillermo Vargas Habacuc, took a dog from the street, he tied him to a rope in an art gallery, starving him to death. For several days, the 'artist' and the visitors of the exhibition have watched emotionless the shameful 'masterpiece' based on the dog's agony, until eventually he died!

Does it look like art to you?

But this is not all ... the prestigious Visual Arts Biennial of the Central American decided that the 'installation' was actually art, so that Guillermo Vargas Habacuc has been invited to repeat his cruel action for the biennial of 2008.

Lets Stop him!
Please sign the following petition:

Boycott to the presence of Guillermo Vargas "Habacuc" at the Bienal Centroamericana Honduras 2008
Sign here

Sean said...

I got the really great pancake recipe from a local restaurant and cooked brunch for my mother at home, thereby avoiding all the crowds. As I don't have a backyard, I don't think it will be so easy to pull off a similar feat for father's day.