Tag Archives: politics

Political Polarization: Seek First to Understand

America is now more politically polarized than at any point in the last 20 years. This isn’t just Congress – this is the American people. That polarization shows up in beliefs about politics, about everyday life, and even in where … Continue reading

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Is the US an Oligarchy? Not So Fast.

There’s a new study out which, press outlets are telling me, shows that the United States is now an oligarchy, ruled by the rich and powerful, and perhaps that the US has been sliding in this direction for decades. You … Continue reading

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My WFS2011 Talk: The Infinite Resource: Growing Prosperity While Reducing Impact on the Earth

I gave at talk this morning at the World Future Society 2011 Conference in Vancouver.   The talk was entitled The Infinite Resource:  Growing Prosperity While Reducing Impact on the Earth, and it looks at what the ultimate limits of growth … Continue reading

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Persuading Climate Skeptics – Why We Need Republican Experts

New Scientist has an interesting article on research into what persuades people on scientific issues.  The key finding is that there’s a major impact of hearing the evidence from someone who has similar political and social outlooks.  Experts who are … Continue reading

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From Printing Press to Twitter: What Makes a Technology Pro-Democracy?

We’ve heard a lot about the role of social media, text messaging, and mobile phones in the uprising in Egypt.   A lot has been said to credit them with fueling or at least organizing the protests and with getting … Continue reading

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Lessons From Egypt : Encouraging Saudi Democracy & Beyond

I posted recently that the situation in Egypt provides important lessons for US foreign policy.  Specifically, the US should have been pressing for democracy in Egypt decades ago, and making US military aid to Egypt contingent on steps towards a … Continue reading

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Egypt, Twitter, and the Collapse of Top-Heavy Societies

Watching the news about Egypt and the debate as to whether Twitter, Facebook, etc.. are inherently pro-democracy, I’m struck by a connection to Joseph Tainter’s 1988 classic, The Collapse of Complex Societies. Tainter speculates that societies ultimately face two problems. … Continue reading

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Egypt: Is Mandatory Conscription Pro-Democracy?

Watching the situation in Egypt, I’ve been struck repeatedly by how the Army has behaved. Today the Egyptian Army announced that it won’t use force against protesters.  Earlier in the protests, we saw reports of Egyptian soldiers shaking hands with … Continue reading

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Turmoil in Egypt Shows Shortsightedness of US Foreign Policy

Over the last few days, Egyptians have taken to the streets, demanding that Egyptian president and dictator Hosni Mubarak step down. The protests so far haven’t had a religious or anti-American bent. They’re not Islamist. They are a wave of … Continue reading

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