Author Archives: Santi Tafarella

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.

Miracle, Mystery, and Authority in the Catholic Land of Oz: Edward Feser vs. Pope Francis on the Death Penalty

Pope Francis is changing the Catechism of the Catholic Church–a summary of Christian belief–to declare that the death penalty is now “inadmissable” for Catholics. Here’s The New York Times: Pope Francis has declared the death penalty wrong in all cases, … Continue reading

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Thirteen Climate Atlases Shrug, Departing for France

The flight, because of Trump, of our most precious resource: human brain capital. (Mind wells are far more valuable than oil wells.) Trump has inspired a brain drain of no less than thirteen climate researchers to France. This recalls Einstein’s … Continue reading

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Relativity (A Poem)

RELATIVITY This is whatever can be measured between us. For instance, two birds share one sign, tail feathers touching, heads back in song, a heart of gray sky framed between them. But look again, for each line clocks a difference. One … Continue reading

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Self Calming: 86 Ways To Activate Your Parasympathetic Nervous System

Below is a concise self calming list I recently brainstormed for myself–and I thought it might be helpful for others as well. I keep a copy on a single piece of paper in my pocket and look at it periodically … Continue reading

Posted in aesthetics, atheism, atomism, beauty, Bernie Sanders, david hume, edward feser, God, Lucretius, meditation, philosophy, poetry, science, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

With Stormy Daniels, The Power of Sex–Not the Russians, Not the Majority of Voters–May Finally Achieve Trump’s Unraveling

Did Donald Trump pay Stormy Daniels to help him win the presidency or was he just keeping a secret from his wife? If it’s the former, he has foisted a fraudulent marital persona before the country to achieve election and … Continue reading

Posted in beauty, Bernie Sanders, brexit, donald trump, feminism, hillary clinton, Politics, Ted Cruz, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tariffs Are for Friends of Trump–But Not the Rest of Us

Jeffrey Dorfman’s recent essay for Forbes on Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs is titled, “On Steel Tariffs, the Math Just Doesn’t Add Up.” But the math actually adds up just fine from the vantage of the connected rich. Tariffs are … Continue reading

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If Trump Now Fires Mueller, Collusion with Russia Will Be Happening Every Day in Real Time

Trump is a traitor who won’t defend the integrity of his own country’s election system from Russian election hackers. Think about that. After the indictment of thirteen Russians Friday, Trump is now literally assisting them in a cover-up if he … Continue reading

Posted in Bernie Sanders, donald trump, feminism, hillary clinton, Politics, Uncategorized | 20 Comments

Trump Slurs His Speech–Again

It’s not just the fact that President Trump was put on video yesterday in place of a face-to-face encounter with the press, it’s that, when you actually watch it, the screen cuts suggest the possibility that this was pieced together … Continue reading

Posted in Bernie Sanders, brexit, donald trump, hillary clinton, Politics, Ted Cruz, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Does Trump Have Dementia–And If So, Should It Be Made Public?

We can probably all agree that Trump is a clinical narcissist. He may even be a sociopath. So when Trump has his physical this month, there is no need to test for these–though, in an ideal world, we would. It … Continue reading

Posted in Bernie Sanders, climate change, donald trump, feminism, hillary clinton, philosophy, science, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

A Life-Affirming Talk on Sustainable Community Building

I like this.  

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THE HATE POTATO: Will Trump Hatred Absent Hillary Hatred Prove to Be the Deciding Election Factor in 2018 and 2020?

Something this morning in an analysis of data at The Washington Post by James Hohmann strikes me as extremely hopeful for Democrats. It may prove, in 2018 and 2020, that what holds the Democratic coalition together to beat the fractured Republican … Continue reading

Posted in atheism, Bernie Sanders, climate change, donald trump, feminism, hillary clinton, Politics, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Why Are Some College Students So Lazy?

Maybe it’s an evolution thing. (Of course, everything is an evolution thing.) But what I mean is: all life forms are taking gambles in each moment as to how they’ll expend their energy or conserve it. On the continuum of … Continue reading

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The Poet’s Fictions (A Poem)

THE POET’S FICTIONS   No hurry, no preference; Nothing simple, Nothing personal; one fire, Great Silence.   Bring your rebellion. Bring your solidarity. Imagine. Bent nail. Struggle. Birth. _____

Posted in aesthetics, atheism, atomism, beauty, edward feser, God, Lucretius, meditation, poetry, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Guided Meditation With A Little Help From A Wallace Stevens Poem (“The Plain Sense Of Things”)

If the poet generates a soundtrack to an environment, then the meditator, as poet, generates a meta-soundtrack that goes something like this: In your head, bring the inertial, reactive soundtracks down. Do not desire or avert them, but just let … Continue reading

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On Having No Head: The Headless Squid Bowl, The Flying Spaghetti Monster, And The Cosmos’s Undirected, Mutually Interdependent Arising

The headless squid bowl sometimes served in Japanese restaurants is odd and fascinating. It strikes me as a metaphor for the cosmos: it goes without a head. How strange. In a sense, even conscious beings like ourselves go without a … Continue reading

Posted in atheism, atomism, beauty, climate change, david hume, edward feser, Genesis, God, Lucretius, meditation, origins, poetry, science, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Partially Excited States: An Interview With Charles Hood

Poet, artist, and photographer Charles Hood’s most recent book, Partially Excited States (University of Wisconsin Press 2017), is the winner of the Felix Pollak Prize for this year. I interviewed Hood, a Southern California native, about his new book. __________ … Continue reading

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American Nazis at Jefferson’s Statue: That Image from Charlottesville I Can’t Get Out of My Mind

_____ The hate that dares not speak its name. If this doesn’t look like Nazi Germany in the 1930s, then what is it? And at the University of Virginia. And around a statue of the greatest humanist of the Enlightenment, … Continue reading

Posted in atheism, Bernie Sanders, brexit, climate change, donald trump, edward feser, feminism, hillary clinton, science, Uncategorized | 30 Comments

Distract, Maul, And Dominate: Donald Trump’s CNN Wrestling Video GIF And Hitler’s Reichstag Fire

“There is nothing so fretting and vexatious, nothing so justly terrible to tyrants, and their tools and abettors, as a free press” (Samuel Adams in 1768). However tense we may be with Trump as president, our republic is still functioning … Continue reading

Posted in atheism, Bernie Sanders, brexit, climate change, donald trump, edward feser, feminism, God, Ted Cruz, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

What Does It Mean For God To Exist, Think, And Act?

It’s always comforting to (seemingly) settle hard questions in thirty seconds. But as a matter of logic, if space-time is the condition for existence, and existence is bound up with space-time (as Einstein proposed), then in what sense could God … Continue reading

Posted in atheism, atomism, david hume, edward feser, Genesis, God, God, Lucretius, philosophy, Uncategorized | 8 Comments

Trump and Authoritarianism

Clarity. A must-view, short video from Vox surveying some of the political science data on authoritarianism and its relation to Trump. A really excellent summary.

Posted in atheism, Bernie Sanders, brexit, climate change, donald trump, edward feser, feminism, God, hillary clinton, Politics, science, Ted Cruz, Uncategorized | 4 Comments