Thursday, September 27, 2018

In Praise of Irresponsibility, Part II

Our task is to define the praiseworthy aspects of irresponsibility, and to do so we have to first define irresponsibility itself. And here we immediately come upon several possibilities. There is irresponsibility of commission, which is to be irresponsible by committing irresponsible acts. There is also the irresponsibility of omission, which is to be irresponsible by failing to act in a responsible manner. And let us not neglect to mention willful irresponsibility, which is to refuse to accept or acknowledge one’s responsibilities. Finally, there is meta-irresponsibility, which is to consider the question of responsibility in an irresponsible manner, as in “Your discussion of responsibility has grown tiresome, feh!”

But such a compendium of irresponsibility appears to shed little light on the question of what is praiseworthy about any of it. Let us therefore backtrack a bit. First, we will define responsibility. Then we will expose its numerous deplorable, detestable, reprehensible aspects. And then, finally, through the simple trick of negation, we will get at irresponsibility and its laudable, praiseworthy aspects. Let’s get cracking!