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LAST CHANCE: BOOK DEDICATION FOR SALE

UPDATE: In just over 24 hours, the silent auction closes. Current high bid is $260.

There’s been some discussion about the metaphysics of dedication, such as whether it’s really possible to dedicate a book by fiat. Without getting into why, let me just announce that my perhaps mistaken belief is that one can dedicate a book by fiat, and I intend to dedicate it on behalf of the high bidder. Peter and I are sincerely grateful to everyone who has helped us commodify our book. (And if someone says that because we are sincerely grateful and aren’t really doing for the money, that this isn’t real commodification, well, we cover that in part II.)

Have you ever wanted to dedicate a book to someone? Now you can!

Markets without Limits’s expected publication date is October 2015. In this book, Peter Jaworski and I defend the thesis that “If you may do it for free, you may do it for money.”  Some excerpts from the first chapter:

We think rumors of the evils of markets have been greatly exaggerated. It is time to give markets a fair hearing.

Our goal in this book is deflationary. We want to show anti-commodification theorists that their complaints about the scope of the market are misplaced. There are, we agree, things that should not be bought and sold, but that’s only because they are things people shouldn’t have or do in the first place. Beyond that, we argue, there are legitimate moral worries about how we buy, trade, and sell, but no legitimate worries about what we buy, trade, and sell…

…to take another example, Michael Sandel complains about parents trying to sell naming rights to their children. He worries children might end up being named “Pepsi Peterson” or “Jamba Juice Jones”.[i] But, in our view and in Sandel’s, the problem here is that these names are humiliating. If so, then parents shouldn’t give their kids these names, period, for free. If so, the market for naming kids Pepsi is wrong because naming kids Pepsi is wrong. The wrongness doesn’t originate in the market. In contrast, Brennan gave his children normal, boring names. Since it was permissible for him to do so for free, it would be, in our view, permissible for him to do so for a fat check from Pepsi.

As part of our effort to commodify our book on commodification (we raised over $600 from selling acknowledgments), we’re selling the dedication page. The dedicate page will read like this:

Insert dedication here.* 

 

*BUYER paid $AMOUNT for this dedication.

 

Here are the rules:

1. You get up to 100 characters, including spaces, for the dedication.

2. We will give the winner a wide degree of freedom in writing the dedication. We won’t publish anything that is in legal sense slanderous/libelous/defamatory, or is likely in some way going to get us in legal trouble. We won’t accept dedications attacking or criticizing our family or friends. We won’t publish something that has strong potential to get us fired. Publishing government secrets? Out. Accusing someone of a crime without evidence? Out. But you can dedicate book to, say, Charles Manson, Ayn Rand, or Karl Marx. You could write something nasty such as, “To Jason Brennan, may he die soon and in pain,” or, “To Nickelback, the best band ever.”

3. You agree to allow us to publish your real name and the amount you paid for the dedication on the dedication page.

4.  We will use a silent auction system to determine the winner. To bid, just reply to this post with a comment. Indicate the amount of your bid in your comment. Make sure to include your email address (which need not be displayed) when filling out the comment form so that we can contact you. You don’t need to choose what your dedication will be now; you can decide that later, after winning.

5. Bidding starts now. Minimum bid is $25. Bidding ends at midnight, February 14. Remember, book dedications make a great Valentine’s Day gift.

 

For what it’s worth, we’re doing it for the money, but we’re not really doing it for the money. It’s important to the integrity of the book that we commodify it a bit, but we aren’t doing this because we need the cash. That said, our intention is spend all the money we raise from commodifying the book on self-gratification, or to invest the money; not a single cent will be donated to charity.

  • Michael Tyburski

    I’ll start the bidding. $25.

  • ZPT205

    Is this the sort of silent auction where the winner pays their bid, or pays the second-highest bid?

    • Jason Brennan

      High bidder pays his or her indicated bid and wins. Losing bidders pay nothing.

  • Will

    $50

  • Pingback: Book Dedication Sale | Daily Nous()

  • Jessica Flanigan

    I love this idea!!!

    • Jason Brennan

      Do you love it more than $50? If so, the page can be yours (for now)!

  • DavidRHenderson

    $100.

  • Fernando Teson

    Brilliant!

  • Chris MacDonald

    I’ll bid $150 (as Editor of the Business Ethics Journal Review — http://www.bejr.org )

    • Guest

      Is it ethical to buy someone else’s dedication?

      • Guest

        Is it possible to buy someone else’s dedication?

  • DavidRHenderson

    $160

    • Chris MacDonald

      $161!

  • Valentine’s Day is coming up… Let’s go $175.

  • Michael Giberson

    I’ll offer $180,

    • DavidRHenderson

      As they say on “Shark Tank,” I’m out. Although, as sometimes rarely happens on Shark Tank, I might come in later.

  • j_m_h

    Thoughts here
    1) Wininer’s Curse
    2) It doesn’t seem like a correct dedication if the authors of the book are not making the dedication — somehow it seems like some type of non-sequitur (in a metaphorical sense not pure logic sense). I’m taking it that’s just me given the bidding.
    3) Related to 2), I can always just by the book and then write my own dedication to whomever I’m planning on providing it to and the cost of the dedication in 0 dollars.
    Humm, It was’t quite specified but is the cost of the dedicaiton per copy?

  • Simon Evnine

    All your rules are like annoying government regulations. The features they govern should really be monetized too. If someone were willing to pay thousands for a possibly libelous dedication, you should confront whether you thought it was a good deal for you. And if someone wanted to pay a premium for not having it stated that they paid for the dedication, why not?

    • Jason Brennan

      I’d rather be up front about it.

  • Irfan Khawaja

    Re rule 2: would you take: “This is no longer a dedication page, except in name”?

    I’m almost tempted to do the Nickelback dedication, but of course in that case, someone would have to pay me, not the other way around.

    • Irfan Khawaja

      Just to be explicit about something that should be patently obvious: the dedication of a book is governed by a series of conventions, among them that the authors are the ones who offering it, and that they’re doing so sincerely to people about whom they feel some sincere emotion, typically love or respect.

      There may be some other conventions governing dedication pages, but those two by themselves entail that you can’t offer a dedication for an ulterior motive, which entails that you can’t offer a dedication as part of an auction or book-marketing stunt, or even to prove that you really, really mean what you say in the book about how markets have no limits (or whatever). Naturally, no one should stop you if you do. But that could be said of a lot of things.

      If the authors insist on using what would normally be the dedication page for a dedication-auction, it’s obvious that the page is no longer a dedication page, but just a place where the authors have decided to pull off a not-terribly-funny stunt to prove a point–the point being that the dedication page can be auctioned out, and can lose its identity as a dedication page in the process. (I don’t think they meant to prove the latter conjunct, but they have.) They can call it a “dedication page,” but it obviously isn’t one because it contains no dedication in relevant sense.

      I find it amusing that this semantic confusion about the meaning of “dedication page” comes from a guy who elsewhere likes to lecture people about the relation between lexicography and conceptual analysis. I guess the next step would be to auction out a whole book, turn it over to the highest bidder, let them write any rubbish they want in it, and call the result a “treatise.” But somehow, I think if you put The Paid-For Treatise on Rubbish on a shelf alongside treatises by, say, Locke, Hume, and Maxwell, people will draw on their knowledge of Sesame Street to figure out that one “treatise” on the shelf “doesn’t belong with the others.” Same here, mutatis mutandis.

      By the way, it would be lame if they auctioned out the dedication page, and then spent the Preface or whatever doing the functional equivalent of what a real dedication page does–thanking their spouses and/or mentors, and telling us how important their support has been, etc. In that case, the “dedication page” would just have gotten moved into the Acknowledgements. I somehow don’t think Brennan will say, “My wife paid me to thank her, and my kids paid me to love them, so here I am, telling you about it.” But you never know.

      So feel free to waste your money, but don’t kid yourself into thinking that you’ve just spent money on a “dedication page.” You’ve spent money (if you win) on an authorial stunt. If you pay money for that, I feel sorry for you. But don’t let me stop you. I wouldn’t. You couldn’t pay me to do something like that.

      • Jason Brennan

        I bet you’d do it for $500K.

        • Perhaps Irfan Khawaja would use the “dedication” knowing it was a joke or disingenuous on the part of the authors (rather than him), so as to point out in the book that it is a joke or disingenuous–if he were paid $500K.
          He already perhaps suggested this in his original post:
          ‘Re rule 2: would you take: “This is no longer a dedication page, except in name”?’
          His major point was that it is impossible make a dedication for merely pecuniary reasons–a point which you have implicitly conceded to above.
          Can we all agree now that this “dedication”–and your taunt above–is basically a joke? Otherwise, in all sincerity, I think that the ongoing evasion and/or insincerity and/or error–whichever it is–will do more harm than good for free market advocacy.

          • Sean II

            “Can we all agree now that this “dedication” is basically a joke?”

            I cannot. An important condition has not been met.

          • You mean, nobody’s laughing? 🙂

        • Irfan Khawaja

          You’re on! I’ll bet you 500K that I wouldn’t do it.

          • Sean II

            Suddenly you made me realize the other problem with this stunt.

            Even if someone buys the dedication, it won’t actually mean that Brennan sold it “for money”.

            On the contrary. Since he’s obviously doing this to make a point, that makes it something done for a reason other than money. The whole gesture is thus oddly self-defeating.

        • Konrad_Lorenz

          Wait, wasn’t he just saying you couldn’t pay him to _stop_ someone else from making this deal?

      • j_m_h

        “If the authors insist on using what would normally be the dedication
        page for a dedication-auction, it’s obvious that the page is no longer a
        dedication page”

        So this seems to raise a philosophical point – if the act of selling what can be done for free means that act is no longer actually performed does the whole underlying thesis hold?

        Clearly in some cases I would say yes but it seem there may be limits to the ability to commercialize actions.

        • Jason Brennan

          “May do it for money” = “not wrong to do it for money”

          If it’s impossible to do it for money, that’s not a counterexample.

          • “If you may do it for free, you may do it for money.”
            I think your thesis might be better phrased as: “If you may do it for free and it is possible to do it for money, then you may do it for money.” Otherwise, you can simply deny the consequent (on the grounds of ought implies can, per your comment above) and thereby deny the antecedent. You get the odd result that if you may not do it for money, you may not do it for free. (Sorry if I’ve insulted your intelligence by making this simple point, but I was frankly surprised by your response above, and so felt inclined to make it.)
            Also, if it is impossible to make a dedication for money, as you have implicitly conceded above, then what exactly are you doing here? Joking? Deceiving?

          • AP²

            The actual thesis should be something closer to “if it’s ethical to do it for free, it’s ethical to do it for money”, which sidesteps all the other reasons why it may not be done for money (legal, physical, emotional, etc).

          • Please reconsider my reply to Jason Brennan above regarding his thesis. It also applies to your rephrasing.

          • j_m_h

            While I understand the distincition you want to make there I think that also glosses over some important and subtle aspect of human actions. As Eric suggests you might do better by rephasing the proposition.

            What bothers me here is that you seem to be following something of the view some hold that economics can explain all human action and interaction. I think that’s a load of crap. Economics can explain some aspects of nearly all such behavior (individual and social) but the degree to which the economic elements are really important will vary and in some cases be either trivial or even misleading– a bit like selling the dedication situation.

            I think this is important given the number of relatively hard-core market libertarians that don’t really understand some of these subtlies or economic beyond the basis 101 level who like to chant “the market will handle it”. Clearly if something cannot be priced no market that is conceived in economics will be able to do much with that aspect of human experience or interaction. Suggestion, as this thread does, that it would be fine to commercialize such aspect of out lives can only go in the wrong direction.

          • Jason Brennan

            j_m_h: No, we don’t make any such arguments. You’ll have to see the book.

            Indeed, it’s much more about anthropology than economics.

          • j_m_h

            Vwey good to hear.

          • Irfan Khawaja

            Oh, and “To Nickelback, the best band ever”: that’s not wrong?

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BB0DU4DoPP4

            It sounds wrong to me. Very wrong.

          • Sean II

            Yes, you’re definitely onto something.

            It’s not wrong for disc jockeys to play music based on their tastes. Thus according to Brennan it should not be wrong for disc jockeys to play music based on payola.

            But payola is what allowed Nickelback to become famous, so it MUST be wrong.

          • Konrad_Lorenz

            But would payola be wrong if radio stations were completely upfront about the payola-backed music being advertisement? Isn’t the wrongness the result of the fact that most people are deceived?

            (Or are we just joking about how bad Nickelback is? Is the true wrong here that such a band exists?)

      • Sean II

        I think you’re onto something, Irf.

        The premise here is supposed to be: “If it’s okay to do for free, it’s okay to do for money.”

        But the first condition hasn’t been met in this example! Most everyone would tell you that it’s wrong to debase a dedication page by letting some guy you don’t know, who had nothing to do with writing or inspiring the book, dedicate it to his goldfish.

        So what we have here is evidently a case of: “Wrong to do for free, wrong and tacky to do for money.”

      • TracyW

        Just to be explicit about something that should be patently obvious: the dedication of a book is governed by a series of conventions, among them that the authors are the ones who offering it, and that they’re doing so sincerely to people about whom they feel some sincere emotion, typically love or respect.

        Historically dedication pages were to the author’s patron, who paid for it. Take for example Shakespeare’s grovelling dedication for the poem Venus and Adonis:

        “TO THE
        RIGHT HONORABLE HENRY WRIOTHESLY,
        EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON, AND BARON OF TICHFIELD.
        RIGHT HONORABLE,

        I KNOW not how I shall offend in dedicating my unpolished lines to your lordship, nor how the world will censure me for choosing so strong a prop to support so weak a burden only, if your honour seem but pleased, I account myself highly praised, and vow to take advantage of all idle hours, till I have honoured you with some graver labour. But if the first heir of my invention prove deformed, I shall be sorry it had so noble a god-father, and never after ear so barren a land, for fear it yield me still so bad a harvest. I leave it to your honourable survey, and your honour to your heart’s content; which I wish may always answer your own wish and the world’s hopeful expectation.”

        And how do you know that Jason Brenan won’t feel at least as sincerely towards whomever wins the bidding, as Shakespeare did towards the Earl of Southampton?

        • Konrad_Lorenz

          You say that as if you think people would be happy that Shakespeare was made to grovel.

          • TracyW

            When I was writing it I was consciously taking pleasure in pointing out how Khawaja’s history was, if not wrong, at least very incomplete.

            It is of course entirely possible that I had some subconscious motives, but consciously, as a reader, I think it a very good thing that audiences are so wide now that authors need not flatter a particular patron.

          • Irfan Khawaja

            I wasn’t making a historical point (and thus can’t have gotten any history either wrong or incomplete). I was making a point about conventions. It’s an obvious fact that conventions change, and an equally obvious fact that this one has. it’s also obvious that given current conventions, it flouts the conventions of a dedication to offer one for money. If Brennan wrote his book by Shakespeare’s grammatical conventions, I think we’d all grasp that he was flouting modern English usage. (“In sooth, I believe markets hath limits….”) If I pointed out that such a Shakespearean book flouted “common usage,” it wouldn’t be a legitimate response to say, “Your history is wrong or incomplete. In Shakepeare’s day….” The conventions of Shakespeare’s day don’t govern in either case.

          • TracyW

            Yes, it’s an obvious fact that conventions change. Very often consciously. For example, for a very long time it was conventional to openly discriminate on the basis of gender or race. To pick a relatively trivial example, for a while it was convention for tennis commentators to refer to “John Smith” as “Smith” but “Jane Smith” as “Miss Smith”. (I’m picking this one as all the other examples that come to mind of struck me as vastly more important than the use of a dedication page).

            From Brennan’s summaries he’s posted here of his book, it’s pretty clear that he thinks that conventions around what you do for money should change. So, in this context, for him to flout the convention that a dedication is not sold is entirely reasonable.

            I brought up the history of dedication pages because you were going beyond current conventions about the use of dedication pages to saying that Brennan’s usage was making something not actually a dedication page. To quote you:

            They can call it a “dedication page,” but it obviously isn’t one because it contains no dedication in relevant sense.

            But clearly historically dedication pages could indeed be very different to what you described, just as what is meant by politeness in addressing men and women can be very different.

            And yes I do sometimes use Shakespeare as partial support when I argue that English does not need to follow a particular asserted grammatical rule, or word meaning.

      • Book dedication snob

  • Dale

    If you really had the courage of your convictions, wouldn’t you be putting a price on co-authorships? 🙂

    • Sean II

      Also: “If it’s not wrong to cite someone in a paper you’re writing, it’s not wrong to cite someone…for money.”

      • Jim

        That sounds right. If it’s permissible to cite Sean II for having said “x, y, z,” then it’s permissible to have Sean pay for your citing him for having said, “x, y, z.”

        • Andrew Pearson

          I don’t know about that. Presumably it would have to be the case that Sean II genuinely had helped them by saying “x, y, z.” or they would be being dishonest. But if he had actually made a contribution to their thought, then he would be owed a citation just for that and it would be impermissible for them to charge for citing him – though he could of course pay them if he wanted to.

          • Konrad_Lorenz

            I would think that this is a general exception which the book will take into account. (You cannot require money from someone for performing what was already obligatory.)

            Note that this is already an operative principle in contract law.

  • Alex Sloat

    We got a group together, and because of the difficulties of coordination, we overshot a bit. So I’ll bid $260.

  • Owlmirror

    This book is dedicated to the Invisible Hand of the Market, giving the finger to everyone.

    I am not willing to pay for this, but I offer it in the hopes that someone who is will find it funny enough to bid for.

  • martinbrock

    Buying the dedication of someone else’s book seems like buying someone else’s trophy or someone else’s university degree (a certificate of the degree). I value trophies that I’ve won because I won them. I might buy someone else’s trophy as a collectible expecting to sell it profitably later, but I wouldn’t buy one only to possess it, because it has no value to me as such.

    Could you sell the authorship of this book? You could sell someone a right to be named the author, even a right to be known as the author in perpetuity, but does the buyer actually become the author by purchasing this right? At some point, saying that anything can be sold abuses the language.

    • TracyW

      I think Brenan’s case is that if it’s ethical to do it for free, it’s ethical to do it for money.

      You can’t ethically “give away” authorship of a book. Otherwise the enemy of a person could intentionally put out a very stupid book in that person’s name. Or the over-confident admirer of a person could unintentionally put out a very stupid book in that person’s name. (Although ghost-writing is a thing.) Ditto for giving away a university degree, you can’t give away your university degree to someone you like so you can’t sell your degree either. You can ethically give a trophy away, but you can’t ethically give away the credit of having won that trophy.

      But a dedication can be given to whomever you want, to give one example “To my wife Marganit and my children Ella Rose and Daniel Adam without whom this book would have been completed two years earlier.”

      • martinbrock

        The intended recipient of a gift need not accept it, but my point is not that an author should not pretend that someone else wrote his book. My point is that an author can only pretend that someone is the author.

        An author is the author of his book, and no one else is, even if the author pretends that someone else is the author, even if every politician on Earth agrees to say that someone else is the author. We don’t call him “the author” because of some alienable, legal entitlement. We call him “the author”, because the book is a product of his creative labor and not someone else’s.

        You can give away a piece of metal with your name on it, but a trophy only symbolizes your merit. You can’t give the merit away.

        The dedication of a book seems similar to me. Sure, I can dedicate my book to anyone I choose, but I can do so because I am the book’s author. The recipient of my dedication appreciates the dedication, because it reflects the author’s sincere appreciation, not because the recipient’s name appears in the book.

        If I sell you the right to put someone else’s name in my book, I owe appreciation to you, not to the person you name, as Brennan’s rule 3 seems to indicate. He isn’t really selling the dedication. He’s dedicating the book to someone, named in the book, who pays him to name someone else in the book. The recipient of the second hand “dedication” knows it too.

        • TracyW

          My point is that an author can only pretend that someone [else] is the author.

          Sure.

          Sure, I can dedicate my book to anyone I choose, but I can do so because I am the book’s author. The recipient of my dedication appreciates the dedication, because it reflects the author’s sincere appreciation, not because the recipient’s name appears in the book.

          Dedications may commonly be a reflection of sincere appreciation, but that doesn’t mean they have to be. Would you describe all these famous dedications as sincere appreciation? Even the P.G. Wodehouse dedication “SUCKS TO YOU, FRISBY.’? Or how about Shakespeare’s grovelling dedication of Venus and Adonis to the Earl of Southampton? Or Jane Austen’s dedication of one of her books to the Prince Regent, whom in all likelihood she disapproved of?

          The recipient of my dedication appreciates the dedication…

          And yet, a search for “dedication to my late…” turns up results, even though the recipent clearly can’t appreciate the dedication what with being dead.

          not because the recipient’s name appears in the book.

          So if the recipient doesn’t actually give two figs about the author’s feelings, but loves the fame, then it’s not a dedication according to you?

          Basically, you seem to be assuming a definition of “dedication” in order to give the answer you want. I think from observing common practice, that, while an author may commonly use the dediction to express sincere appreciation, there’s no such inherent limitation. They can use the dedication to flatter for money from a patron (Shakespeare), to increase their fame and thus sales (Austen) or to amuse the reader (P.G. Wodehouse).

          There’s no obligation for any particular emotion on the part of the author to the recipient, nor any obligation for the recipient to return the emotions. And, anyway, how do you know Brennan doesn’t feel sincere appreciation towards whomever moved the buyer so much as to make the buyer willing to pay money to Brennan?

          • martinbrock

            A list of idiosyncratic book dedications is not relevant to my point. Conventionally, a dedication signals the author’s opinion (typically appreciative) of someone else, not someone else’s opinion of someone unknown to the author.

            I am assuming common usage of the word “dedication”. If Brennan’s usage here were common, we wouldn’t be discussing it.

            You play a game with words here yourself.

          • TracyW

            I am assuming common usage of the word “dedication”.

            Yep. You are assuming. Not checking, not arguing, just assuming.

            If Brennan’s usage here were common, we wouldn’t be discussing it.

            This is not my experience of the Internet.

          • martinbrock

            Of course, I assume. So do you. If you don’t see the accompanying arguments, you willfully ignore them. If you don’t acknowledge your own assumptions, you confuse them with indisputable truth.

            Brennan himself states that his “perhaps mistaken belief is that one can dedicate a book by fiat”. He explicitly acknowledges the idiosyncrasy that I’m discussing right here on the Internet.

          • TracyW

            Of course, I assume. So do you.

            Nope. If you re-read my comments, you’ll see that rather than assuming, I linked to various dedications, and a described list of dedications. Mine is an argument.

            Brennan himself states that his “perhaps mistaken belief is that one can dedicate a book by fiat”. He explicitly acknowledges the idiosyncrasy that I’m discussing right here on the Internet, so you seem to be the one who isn’t checking.

            Yeah, he acknowledges it. But he doesn’t agree with it (“perhaps mistaken” is simply an acknowledgement that he might be wrong).

            And I’m also quite happy to acknowledge that you are discussing this. My point is that you are wrong, as a matter of common usage, not that you don’t exist. It’s entirely possible for someone to make a mistaken argument.

          • martinbrock

            None of the examples you cite express the sentiments of someone other than the author toward someone the author doesn’t know, so none of them contradict my point.

            I earlier used the word “appreciation”, because dedications typically express appreciation, but I conceded this point earlier. An idiosyncratic, hostile dedication is not relative to my point. Every dedication you cite expresses the author’s sentiments toward someone, albeit not an appreciative sentiment, and you ignore this point, while pretending that I make no point or no argument.

            Brennan’s “dedication” is more like advertising space, and he clearly understands this distinction himself; otherwise, he doesn’t need to note the fact that someone pays for the inscription.

          • TracyW

            None of the examples you cite express the sentiments of someone other than the author toward someone the author doesn’t know, so none of them contradict my point.

            Jane Austen’s dedication indeed did express the sentiments of someone other than the author. She suggested a very short dedication of “Dedicated by Permission to H. R. H. The Prince Regent” t to the publisher, who replaced it with more conventional (for the time), fuller, wording. And Jane Austen didn’t know the Prince Regent, though she knew of him.
            To be explicit, the publisher’s wording added “most respectfully dedicated, by …. dutitful and obedient humble servant.” These sentiments were not Jane Austen’s own. And Austen had never met the Prince Regent, although she knew of him.

            Brennan’s “dedication” is more like advertising space, and he clearly understands this distinction himself;

            Sure, but that hardly is sufficient to make Brennan’s dedication not a dedication.

            and you ignore this point, while pretending that I make no point or no argument.

            Wrong again. Not only do I acknowlege that you are discussing this, I also acknowledge that you were making a point, well, several points. My response is merely that your points are wrong, not that your points don’t exist.

            And you yourself said that you were “assuming common usage”, as opposed to arguing it. If you were wrong in that statement there, then I apologise for having made the error of using your own wording to describe your own statements.

          • martinbrock

            Jane Austin’s dedication nonetheless reflects Jane Austin’s opinion of the subject of her dedication, not some third party’s opinion of someone unknown to Jane Austin, except for the intervention by the publisher.

            Brennan’s dedication is unconventional and more closely resembles an advertisement than a conventional dedication, and Brennan himself is aware of this unconventional usage.

            Above you write, ” You are assuming. Not checking, not arguing, just assuming.” This usage of “arguing” seems to accuse me of presenting no argument, but you may use words however you like, of course.

            You win.

  • Chris MacDonald

    I’ll bid $275

    • Alex Sloat

      Wait, which midnight was the deadline – the midnight starting Feb 14, or the midnight ending it? Who won?

      • Chris MacDonald

        I’m pretty sure the plain meaning of the rules suggests end of day on the 14th. Compare: “When do we celebrate New Year’s Eve?” “At midnight, Dec 31”. (i.e., just after 11:59pm, on Dec 31.) But I’ll defer to the judges on this. 🙂

        • Alex Sloat

          But midnight is an actual time – 12:00 AM – and 12:00 AM on Feb 14 was 23 3/4 hours before your post.

          Still, I’ve contacted the authors to get an official ruling, because it could reasonably go either way.

          • RT

            On the 13th, Brennen added an update saying there was just over 24 hours to go before auction closed, so it certainly appears he intended it to be midnight after the 14th (aka, 12 AM on 15th). But, since it was confusing, I’d suggest he give you two a 48 hour “run off” bid time (with an accurate close time, including which time zone).

          • KenB

            Brennen really should’ve just put this up on EBay.

  • Ezhutachan

    What is new here?
    Brennan commodified BHL by trying to sue me for damages, albeit by pretending to be a Jewish Female Attorney.
    I made his life so miserable he issued me a grovelling apology.
    Didn’t sign his name to it though- the boy aint a gentleman- but under continual pressure from me I got the settlement I wanted- scholarships for actual working class Catholics instead of soi disant Marxist elitists- as well as a grudging acceptance, within the Endowing Class, that BHL is just bad Econ and meretricious Frat Boy shite.
    I have a soft spot for you Brennan. You are commodifying idiocy like you always would have done had Education not touched you with its blighting shadow.
    You, my dear, are the Playboy of the Western World.

  • Ezhutachan

    How stupid are the people who leave comments here? Seriously?

    Brennan, babe, I want you to be the first Professor of Ethics to go down under RICO.

    I give you enough rope but Racist malice afore-thought is a noose you invented for yourself.
    Redeem yourself, worthless man.Stop lying. Study something worthwhile.

    You guys missed out on a pretty big bequest. Why? Because you are stupid, parochial and wanna fuck with those who are simply unfuckable for worthless shite like you.

    • RT

      Might I point out you also left a comment here. So seriously, how stupid are such people? I’d say that your post is rather a rambling rant which contains no logical arguments or points of fact, just contempt and possibly malice. I’d say it counts as fairly “stupid” if your goal is try to convince anyone of anything. But maybe that was not your intent. Maybe you just want to troll for trolling sake. In which case, might I suggest you show more wit and less bile.

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