551 Matching Annotations
  1. Last 7 days
  2. May 2020
    1. Ultimately, no one really knows who controls the planet. Over time an amalgam of heads of state, bankers, managers, advisers, dictators, mafia, criminals and despots have taken the reins.
    1. Hartman, T. K., Stocks, T. V. A., McKay, R., Gibson Miller, J., Levita, L., Martinez, A. P., Mason, L., McBride, O., Murphy, J., Shevlin, M., bennett, kate m, & Bentall, R. (2020). The Authoritarian Dynamic During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Effects on Nationalism and Anti-Immigrant Sentiment [Preprint]. PsyArXiv. https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/4tcv5

    1. The UK voted to leave the European Union in a referendum on 23 June 2016 (and ceased to be a member state on 31 January 2020). This withdrawal from the EU makes the Republic of Ireland–United Kingdom border on the island of Ireland an external border of the European Union.[36] However, the Irish and UK governments and the President of the European Council have stated that they do not wish for a hard border in Ireland, taking into account the historical and social "sensitivities" that permeate the island.[37] In September 2016 the British Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, David Davis, stated that the UK government would not seek a return to a "hard border" between the UK and Republic of Ireland
    1. Jersey is not part of the United Kingdom,[15] and has an international identity separate from that of the UK,[16] but the UK is constitutionally responsible for the defence of Jersey.[17] The definition of United Kingdom in the British Nationality Act 1981 is interpreted as including the UK and the Islands together.[18]The European Commission confirmed in a written reply to the European Parliament in 2003[19] that Jersey was within the Union as a European Territory for whose external relationships the UK is responsible. Jersey was not fully part of the European Union but had a special relationship with it, notably being treated as within the European Community for the purposes of free trade in goods.
  3. Apr 2020
    1. If paralysis ended once you walked out of the Capitol, we wouldn’t have a housing crisis. We’d have better social insurance infrastructure. We’d have better infrastructure, period. But it doesn’t. Report Advertisement To put the question simply: Why is Penn Station, the flagship rail station in New York City, such a dump? Why can’t the richest city in the richest nation in the world have, at the very least, a train station with seating, some nice restaurants, working elevators, and an absence of human waste falling through the ceiling? Marc Dunkelman spent years cataloging the many failures to revamp Penn Station, a number of which came complete with hefty doses of federal funding. Each time, the story was the same: Plenty of people who wanted to build, and plenty of money with which to build, but too many people with vetoes who simply didn’t want the building to happen.

      "vetocracy"

    1. On October 18, 1948, the flag of the Arab Revlot was adopted by the Palestinian government and the Arab League. The current version, with it’s altered stripe order, was adopted in 1964 by the Palestine Liberation Organization under Yassir Arafat and then in 1988, as the official flag of the State of Palestine (unless you don’t recognize Palestine, that is).
    1. In early 2009, on her first trip to Asia as Barack Obama’s secretary of state, Hillary Clinton thanked Chinese policymakers for their “confidence in United States Treasuries” amid the global financial meltdown, adding that human-rights disagreements shouldn’t “interfere” with crisis-fighting efforts.Then, suddenly, relations started going downhill. China grew more assertive as President Hu Jintao came to the end of his term, moving to assert claims to disputed territory in the South China Sea and the Sea of Japan over strenuous American objections. It was also becoming much more confident in the superiority of its economic model, which had come through the crisis relatively unscathed. When Biden visited Beijing in August 2011—shortly after S&P’s Global Ratings downgraded the U.S.’s credit rating—then-Premier Wen Jiabao gave him a mini-lecture on the importance of fiscal prudence, according to a person familiar with the exchange. Wen, the person said, also delivered a thinly veiled threat, saying he hoped China wouldn’t need to find an alternative to parking its wealth in U.S. bonds. Biden replied that Wen’s government was welcome to sell its holdings—plenty of global investors would be happy to buy them. No one, the person recalled Biden saying, had ever won by betting against the U.S. economy.

      WOW

    1. Anachronisms of the Constitution + consequences of an aging democracy => a legislature/politics built for "show"

      In a provocative June 2018 essay in Commentary, the political scientist Yuval Levin posited that 231 years on, Congress had acquired a problem James Madison never anticipated: a reluctance to compete with the other two branches of government in the exercise of power. Partisanship, he concluded, had displaced ambition to legislate. Senators and representatives, he wrote, now “see themselves as players in a larger political ecosystem the point of which is not legislating or governing but rather engaging in a kind of performative outrage for a partisan audience.” Levin didn’t put it this way, but he seemed to be suggesting that Congress had grown decadent, like fin de siècle Vienna, but without the solace of Sacher tortes.

      The U.S. doesn’t have a Politburo, but if you calculate the median age of the president, the speaker of the House, the majority leader of the Senate, and the three Democrats leading in the presidential polls for 2020, the median age is … uh … 77.

      None of this means a septuagenarian can’t function effectively as a political leader. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell are 79 and 77, respectively, and by all reports they’re operating at peak mental capacity. But to affirm that not all elderly people are impaired cognitively is very different from affirming that none is.

      Wisdom may be more valuable in the digital age than ever before, because the velocity of information and normative judgments on social media, cable news and elsewhere constantly threatens to make glib idiots of us all.

      But here’s the rub: The aging of America’s ruling class does not automatically increase its experience level. In presidential politics, notes Brookings Institution senior fellow Jonathan Rauch, political experience, which “used to be a selling point,” has “become a liability. Voters and the public have come to see experience as inauthenticity.”

      In a November 2015 Atlantic article, Rauch plotted experience level for presidential candidates from 1960 to 2012. His graph showed a clear increase in experience level among the losers and a corresponding decrease among the winners. Gerald Ford lost to Jimmy Carter. George H.W. Bush won with more political experience than Michael Dukakis, but four years later lost to Bill Clinton, who had less. John McCain lost to Barack Obama, who’d been in national politics a mere four years.

      Donald Trump, who is 73, entered the Oval Office with no political experience at all. The single greatest mental compensation that age provides was therefore unavailable to the oldest president in American history.

      Old people really like to vote. In 2016, for instance, 71 percent of eligible elderly voters reported to the Census that they voted. For other age cohorts, the turnout percentages were 67 percent (aged 45-64), 59 percent (aged 30-44) and 46 percent (aged 18-29).

      You often hear older Americans complain that the younger generation, with its fixation on social media, can’t distinguish between fact and opinion, making it difficult for them to apply the critical thinking necessary to consume news and be responsible citizens. A 2018 Pew survey found that Americans do indeed experience great difficulty telling these two things apart: Given five factual statements and five statements of opinion, a majority of Americans couldn’t identify them properly.

      But younger Americans actually scored better on this test than older ones. Thirty-two percent of 18-49 year-olds were able to identify all five factual statements, and 44 percent were able to identify all five statements of opinion. Among the over-50 cohort, only 20 percent identified all five factual statements correctly, and only 26 percent did the same with the statements of opinion.

      The list of the Constitution’s anachronisms and ambiguities is long.

      Article One says Congress may “regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States,” phrasing that strictly limited the regulation of private business at the federal level until the New Deal, when the Supreme Court reversed itself and concluded the federal government’s power to regulate private business was pretty vast. Had the Founders grasped that the modern economy would all but eliminate purely local commerce—and that it could, unchecked, alter the very climate of planet earth—they might have had more to say on the subject. As things stand, the powers of the regulatory state are the subject of endless legal combat.

      Article Two says you must be a “natural born Citizen” to be president, which excludes for no apparent reason Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jennifer Granholm, who previously governed two of the nation’s most populous states. The racist “birther” movement that challenged the legality of Barack Obama’s presidency (and that ushered Donald Trump onto the national political stage) wouldn’t have been possible without Article Two.

      Article Two also established that presidents be elected through the Electoral College, an antique mechanism borrowed from the Holy Roman Empire that twice during the past two decades delivered the presidency to the popular-vote loser. Some people have a problem with that.

      The Second Amendment frames the right to bear arms within the context of “well-regulated” state militias that no longer exist, an ambiguity that the Supreme Court interpreted in 2008 to mean the Constitution protected the right to bear arms, after holding for the preceding seven decades that it did not. Had the Founders known the extent to which the nation would tear itself apart over the regulation of firearms more deadly than they ever imagined, they might have laid down a few broad parameters.

      And so on. None of this would matter much if our government were more amenable to reconsidering first principles, but that’s getting harder, too. The Constitution can be amended, and it has been, 27 times. But growing political polarization in recent years has made that difficult. Only two constitutional amendments were ratified during the past half-century (one giving 18-year-olds the right to vote and another, more anodyne amendment that makes it a little harder for Congress to give itself a raise).

  4. Mar 2020
    1. It’s perhaps a positive sign that, despite how polarized people are worried that society is, people can pull together and try to get things done and support each other and recognize people who are heroes on the front lines fighting this stuff
    1. “Using Twitter to bypass traditional media and directly reach voters is definitely a good thing,” Newt Gingrich said, in 2009.

      Is this because it makes it easier for misdirection and outright lies to reach an audience without being checked and verified? Very likely.

    1. Political Polarization

      And important: the role media plays in political polarization. On this topic, I've found works from the Pew useful, like "U.S. Media Polarization and the 2020 Election: A Nation Divided":

      "As the U.S. enters a heated 2020 presidential election year, a new Pew Research Center report finds that Republicans and Democrats place their trust in two nearly inverse news media environments."

      Also useful are works from Data & Society like "Media, Technology, Politics: six new pieces on the networked public sphere"

      "Although many people are anxious to understand how much influence old and new media had over the US presidential election, the reality is that we will never know comprehensively. We can, though, seek to understand how different cultural and technical factors are shaping the contemporary information landscape."

  5. Feb 2020
    1. an O’Byrne,assistant professor of education at the College of Charleston, wrote, “Power and money ultimately influence decisions made by democratic bodies. With growing unrest,citizens can use social media and current/new digital tools to make themselves heard. Ultimately this will be pushed back again by existing powerholders and nothing may ultimately change. The existing powerholders will continue to exert their influence, and citizens will be left to continue to voice their opinions by shouting into the cyberverse.”

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    Annotators

    1. Declaration of Independence

      We have the right to petition the government for redress of grievances

      That seems impractical these days with our government so big.

      We don't even write to our representatives in Congress. Why not? Maybe most of us don't think it would do any good.

      But if we don't stand up for our rights, they will gradually be taken away.

      Where is our militant faith? We're afraid of it being called hate speech.

      "Bigotry disguised as religious liberty is still bigotry"

      Republicanism is a country without a king. Protestantism is a church without a Pope.

      Pope Francis

      Jesuits

      Protestantism is [religious] racism Well, I don't want to be a racist. I better not speak up. Affects free speech.

      Sunday sacredness is the mark of Catholic church's authority.

      "Ecumenism is not optional"

      The persecution from Catholic Church will return again renewed

  6. Jan 2020
    1. A president with credibility

      Repetition used to emphasize a point he is trying to make. He clearly enjoys using rhetorical strategies in his writing, instead of taking a straight-forward, completely formal voice.

    1. Audiences had strong reactions to the new disturbing themes the horror plays presented. One of the most prevalent themes staged at the Grand-Guignol was the demoralization and corruption of science. The "evil doctor" was a reoccurring trope in the horror shows performed.

      Development idea: Bring back the Grand Guignol, but have evil politicians instead.

    1. Fałszywa świadomość podsuwa ludziom tłumaczenie, że prekariat jest wolnością, czymś ciekawym. Prekariuszem się stajesz, gdy sobie uświadamiasz, że masz za krótką kołdrę. Ale nie zawsze o tym myślisz, bo chcesz być „wolnym specjalistą”, a nie prekariuszem. Co nie zmienia faktu, że lewica na razie pozostaje projektem wielkomiejskim.

      Alienacja. Stara poczciwa alienacja.

    1. Man hade utmålat partiet som ett rasistiskt parti, historien om hur vi bildades stod ju där, säger Per Göransson, distriktsordförande för SD i Norrbotten, till SVT.

      Om sverigedemokraterna verkligen är upprörda över sitt förflutna bör de även rikta kritiken mot sin nuvarande ledning.

    1. Now, Google has to change its practices and prompt users to choose their own default search engine when setting up a European Android device that has the Google Search app built in. Not all countries will have the same options, however, as the choices included in Google’s new prompt all went to the highest bidders.As it turns out, DuckDuckGo must have bid more aggressively than other Google competitors, as it’s being offered as a choice across all countries in the EU.
    1. Publishers are eager to please state policymakers of both parties, during a challenging time for the business. Schools are transitioning to digital materials. And with the ease of internet research, many teachers say they prefer to curate their own primary-source materials online.

      Here's where OER textbooks might help to make some change. If free materials with less input from politicians and more input from educators were available. But then this pushes the onus down to a different level with different political aspirations. I have to think that taking the politicization of these decisions at a state level would have to help.

    1. Robert Wiblin: Yeah. I guess in politics it seems that that brings out people’s tribal instincts, so they tend to group together for practical reasons, if not intellectual reasons, like kind of all sharing the same views or like wanting to fall into line and are particularly incentivized to do that. An interesting thing, I’ll provide a link to a study looking at how ideologically tightly grouped are people in politics, which found that uneducated people just like have views all over the place. Their views on one question don’t really predict their views on another.

      The Ezra Klein take on Donald Kinder and Nathan Kalmoe’s "Neither Liberal nor Conservative: Ideological Innocence in the American Public. "?

      So are you saying that you think political people group together more in politics than philosophers do in philosophy? Hard to make an apples-to-apples comparison here, of course, as most people don't think deeply about these philosophical questions.

  7. Dec 2019
    1. Tilbury Fort

      Tilbury Fort is an artillery fort on the north bank of the River Thames in England, built by King Henry VIII to secure it against France. It was later reinforced over concerns of invasion by the Spanish Armada in 1588.

    2. syndics

      A syndic was the mayor or head of administration of a commune or canton. In Geneva, they were part of a council appointed by the legislature to govern the republic.

    3. Numa

      Numa Pompilius (753–673 BC; reigned 715–673 BC) was the legendary second king of Rome, succeeding Romulus.

    4. No youth could have passed more 049happily than mine. My parents were indulgent, and my companions amiable. Our studies were never forced; and by some means we always had an end placed in view, which excited us to ardour in the prosecution of them. It was by this method

      Mary may be borrowing from her father's work in her account of Victor's childhood. Regarding children, William Godwin's Political Justice recommends that we: "Refer them to reading, to conversation ... but teach them neither creeds nor catechisms, either moral or political ... Speak the language of truth and reason to your child, and be under no apprehension for the result. Show him that what you recommend is valuable and desirable, and fear not but he will desire it. Convince his understanding, and you enlist all his powers animal and intellectual in your service" [Godwin, An Enquiry Concerning Political Justice (London, 1798) I: 43].

    5. Romulus

      Romulus (c. 750 BC) was believed to have founded the city of Rome, its institutions, government, military and religious traditions. He reigned for many years as its first king. He is thought to have killed his twin brother, Remus.

    6. The Greeks wept for joy when they beheld the Mediterranean from the hills of Asia, and hailed with rapture the boundary of their toils

      Victor refers to the Greeks' long retreat from Armenia in Xenophon's Anabasis: "And when all had reached the summit [having made it], then indeed they fell to embracing one another, and generals and captains as well, with tears in their eyes" (4.7).

    7. Lycurgus

      Lycurgus (c. 820 BC) was the legendary reformer of Sparta. He established the military-oriented reformation of Spartan society, and promoted the three Spartan virtues: equality (among citizens, at least), austerity, and military fitness.

    1. I would rather you vote against my position because you had an opposing view than vote with my position because you flipped a coin.
    2. Before each election, I have traditionally written up an analysis of the California ballot measures and send it to my friends. It's not always obvious what the "real" agenda is on each one, and even with clear purposes there are often competing interests at play. These writings are the result of my own analysis, which comes from a libertarian perspective, and I'm not knowingly affiliated with any party behind any ballot measure. I believe that mere lists of "vote yes" or "vote no" are not very helpful except for sheep: it's important to know why one is urged to vote in any given direction. I would rather you vote against my position because you had an opposing view than vote with my position because you flipped a coin.
    1. In 2015, in a series of six studies, he and co-author Matthew Feinberg found that when conservative policies are framed around liberal values like equality or fairness, liberals become more accepting of them. The same was true of liberal policies recast in terms of conservative values like respect for authority.
  8. Nov 2019
    1. talk radio and cable news

      To what degree are talk radio and cable news themselves connected to conversations on social media?

    2. Twitter also surfaced a recent study from academics in France, Canada and the United States

      I am not able to find whether this study has yet been published formally with peer review. You can find the first author, Shelley Boulianne, on Twitter, and the last, Bruce Bimber, but I don't see a Twitter account for the middle author, Karolina Koc-Michalska.

  9. Oct 2019
    1. In fact, only two regional cultures consistently exhibit urban-rural vote splitting, and together they account for just 15 percent of the population. Only in the Midlands has the split been a stark one.
    2. I’ve long argued that United States politics resolves around the tension between advancing individual liberty and promoting the common good. The regional cultures we think of as “blue” today have traditions championing the building and maintenance of free communities, today’s “red” ones on maximizing individual freedom of action. Our presidential contests almost always present a clear choice between the two, and the regions act accordingly.
    1. In case you wanted to be even more skeptical of Mark Zuckerberg and his cohorts, Facebook has now changed its advertising policies to make it easier for politicians to lie in paid ads. Donald Trump is taking full advantage of this policy change, as popular info reports.
    2. The claim in this ad was ruled false by those Facebook-approved third-party fact-checkers, but it is still up and running. Why? Because Facebook changed its policy on what constitutes misinformation in advertising. Prior to last week, Facebook’s rule against “false and misleading content” didn’t leave room for gray areas: “Ads landing pages, and business practices must not contain deceptive, false, or misleading content, including deceptive claims, offers, or methods.”
  10. Sep 2019
    1. while questions like ‘Who gets to make decisions over the management and use of land? And who benefits from those uses?’ must be front and centre in the discussion on how land is used and its benefits distributed, the question of how we construct a normative idea of ‘public interest’ must also figure strongly.
    1. True meritocracy came closest to realization with the rise of standardized tests in the 1950s

      Interesting, I'm ready to buy that the post-WWII period had the biggest opening to education in the USA — tho far from truly open or meritocratic and definitely unevenly distributed in many ways, including between K12 and higher ed — but I'm not sure I'd put standardized tests first in a list of reasons for the opening. I'd want to hear more about that.

    1. Abstract

      Abstract is a sales pitch and a guide; the authors summarize their entire paper into less than 100~200 words to draw you in and guide you throughout the rest of the paper.

      This is a literature review on the relationship between the public opinion and foreign policy. The American public is, largely, regarded as uninterested and unaware of foreign policy. However, here the authors survey the literature and conclude that the public is able to hold a nuanced and coherent view on foreign policy and is able to make a voting decision based on this view.

    1. I’ve long argued that United States politics resolves around the tension between advancing individual liberty and promoting the common good. The regional cultures we think of as “blue” today have traditions championing the building and maintenance of free communities, today’s “red” ones on maximizing individual freedom of action. Our presidential contests almost always present a clear choice between the two, and the regions act accordingly.
    2. In fact, only two regional cultures consistently exhibit urban-rural vote splitting, and together they account for just 15 percent of the population. Only in the Midlands has the split been a stark one.
  11. Aug 2019
    1. “Democrats think it's not progressive enough because it doesn’t put extra burdens on higher-income people, like an income tax does,” Hines says. “And Republicans worry that it's too easy for the government to raise money with one.”
  12. Jul 2019
    1. So the solution for the U.S.’s relatively high poverty rate will probably rely little on personal responsibility and moral rectitude. Instead, the U.S. should look to European countries, or to Australia and Canada, for ideas on how to reduce poverty. There’s just no substitute for a strong social safety net.

      Poverty is not due to individuals, especially when class mobility in the USA does not exist anymore.

    1. When people do inexplicable things, it’s always tempting to project qualities onto them that would offer a more innocuous explanation of their behavior than bad judgment, fecklessness, or stupidity. And this particular bias has infected contemporary political analysis with a virulence that rivals Ebola. Even when the subject’s motives are as transparent as Donald Trump’s, there will always be a class of pundit who insists that Trump is playing 3-D chess, when, as one anonymous staffer put it, “more often than not he’s just eating the pieces.” 
    1. Journalists wanted to turn campaigns into larger narratives, and there was no easier narrative than covering politics as though it were a sport.

      Not the only narrative, of course, but the easiest one, certainly.

    1. Hubert Humphrey

      He was the Democratic Party's nominee in the 1968 presidential election, losing to Republican nominee Richard Nixon.

    1. Without looking forward to an extremity of this kind (which nevertheless ought not to be entirely out of sight), the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.

      This was cited by Justin Amash recently in his decision to leave the Republican party.

    1. Sarah Kendzior likens Trump to dictators in former Soviet republics of Central Asia. This was published in March, 2016, before Trump had won the Republican primaries.

    1. Dodwell is right in one respect; Morrissey still has many fans. Many profess to have no interest in his political views, regarding him solely as a musical content provider, a beat maker, a purveyor of vocals. This is bollocks, of course; they're clearly hugely invested in him. In any case, if you're capable of blithely setting aside his views, then there's something badly missing in you.
  13. May 2019
    1. He is gone to my father already

      The Hardwicke Act for the Prevention of Clandestine Marriages passed in 1754, enforcing couples marrying in England to follow certain rules in order to be legally married. One of these rules was obtaining the consent of the father. Any couple under twenty-one needed the consent of a parent or guardian if the child was legitimate. If a couple married without consent, then by law their marriage was void.

      https://byuprideandprejudice.wordpress.com/2014/01/28/courtship-and-marriage-in-the-regency-period/

      http://www.regencyresearcher.com/pages/marriage.html

    1. executors of my father’s will

      "Before 1858, the executor or executrix would register the will in the relevant ecclesiastical court to obtain a grant of probate, thereby allowing the bequests to be fulfilled" (BBC, https://www.bbc.co.uk/history/trail/familyhistory/journey_life/research_tools_04.shtml).

  14. Apr 2019
    1. This huge spread reflects the difference between two groups of people giving different answers to a highly innocuous question: ‘Is it more important for a child to be considerate or well-mannered?’ The answers sound almost identical, but social psychologists know that ‘considerate’ taps other-directed emotions while ‘well-mannered’ is about respect for authority. People’s answer to this question matters for Trump support because it taps into a cultural worldview sometimes known as Right-Wing Authoritarianism (RWA). Rather than RWA, which is a loaded term, I would prefer to characterise this as the difference between those who prefer order and those who seek novelty. Social psychologist Karen Stenner presciently wrote that diversity and difference tends to alarm right-wing authoritarians, who seek order and stability. This, and not class, is what cuts the electoral pie in many western countries these days. Income and material circumstances, as a recent review of research on immigration attitudes suggests, is not especially important for understanding right-wing populism.
    1. nt colonies teach us self-organization stems from an adaptation that compresses information about the environment. Our economy and political system are similar forms of information compression

      I really like the way information compression is being used as an analytical tool for creating models here. makes a lot of sense

    2. The problem is that political competition can also falter. When it does, politicians have less incentive to promise fair outcomes.

      Our economy suffers from extreme inequality due partly to inadequate competition. The problem is that our parking brake for inequality is politics, and our politics is also noncompetitive

    1. He watched an hour-long lecture by Dr. Joy DeGruy on what she called “Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome.” He listened to the work of Tim Wise, an activist who speaks on college campuses and with corporations on fighting racism. He watched Morgan Freeman’s National Geographic series, The Story of Us. He watched Noam Chomsky’s documentary on American wealth distribution, Requiem for the American Dream. He watched Ava DuVernay’s examination of incarceration, the Netflix documentary, 13th. “13th turned the light bulb on,” Stills says.

      This is lovely to read. Kenny Stills, American-football player, finds his viewing and reading material.

      Everybody should see "Requiem for the American Dream", available on Netflix.

  15. Mar 2019
    1. “Imagery in public space is a reflection of who has the power to tell the story of what happened and what should be remembered,” Bleiberg said. “We are witnessing the empowerment of many groups of people with different opinions of what the proper narrative is.” Perhaps we can learn from the pharaohs; how we choose to rewrite our national stories might just take a few acts of iconoclasm.
    2. The prevalent practice of damaging images of the human form—and the anxiety surrounding the desecration—dates to the beginnings of Egyptian history. Intentionally damaged mummies from the prehistoric period, for example, speak to a “very basic cultural belief that damaging the image damages the person represented,” Bleiberg said. Likewise, how-to hieroglyphics provided instructions for warriors about to enter battle: Make a wax effigy of the enemy, then destroy it. Series of texts describe the anxiety of your own image becoming damaged, and pharaohs regularly issued decrees with terrible punishments for anyone who would dare threaten their likeness.
    1. Living in a media ghetto means less that my views are shaped and improved, much less challenged, than that they are hardened and made more extreme;

      Some of the reasons why views are getting so extreme.

    1. Thanks, SM. I, too, want to emphasise that there are excellent philosophers who are outside the academic system. Publishing in journals, working in a university, etc., is only one way to philosophise; it has many advantages, most obviously that of providing a social and material infrastructure for enquiry. But there are other ways to philosophise, too!
    2. Saying what makes a good philosopher is complex and always arouses disagreement, not least since the characteristics of a good philosopher depend a lot on what one considers to be the aims of philosophising, and those are highly plural. The ancient Indian philosophies regarded metaphysical theorising as crucial to the ‘liberation’ of humans from the ‘wheel of suffering’, a conviction largely rejected by classical Chinese philosophers, for whom abstract theory was a distraction from the spontaneity characteristic of a properly ‘harmonious’ life, something apt to be threatened by self-indulgent ‘cleverness’. Within modern academic philosophy, one finds many different conceptions of the aims of philosophy, ranging from the modest to the momentous. Common candidates may include advancing social justice, enhancing scientific enquiry, informing public policy, or the solution of local intellectual problems or, at the other end, the development of ‘big picture’ accounts of life, the universe, and everything.
    3. Second, success in being good at philosophy often requires a very different set of epistemic, practical, and interpersonal competences, many of which are often classified as vices. ‘Playing the game’, in terms of institutional and disciplinary politics, typically rewards traits such as aggressive ambition, insincerity, and self-interestedness. Not always, for sure, but to play that game is to step into an arena with ever-finer lines between legitimate self-interest, pragmatic acquiescence, and more Machiavellian traits.
    4. A person can be good at this thing called philosophy without also being good at this thing called academic philosophy, which is one historically recent, institutionalised form taken by philosophy. Think of how differently philosophy is conceived and practiced in a medieval Christian monastery, a Zen Buddhist temple, or a 21st century British university.
    1. Some children have it bad. Some are miraculously unaffected. But millions of seven- to 15-year-olds are hooked, especially boys, and it is time someone had the guts to stand up, cross the room and just say no to Nintendo. It is time to garrotte the Game Boy and paralyse the PlayStation, and it is about time, as a society, that we admitted the catastrophic effect these blasted gizmos are having on the literacy and the prospects of young males.

      This is the opposite of what he later said here.