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  1. Last 7 days
    1. The historian Peter Turchin coined the phrase elite overproduction to describe this phenomenon. He found that a constant source of instability and violence in previous eras of history, such as the late Roman empire and the French Wars of Religion, was the frustration of social elites for whom there were not enough jobs. Turchin expects this country to undergo a similar breakdown in the coming decade.
    2. The incontestable principle of inclusion drove the changes, which smuggled in more threatening features that have come to characterize identity politics and social justice: monolithic group thought, hostility to open debate, and a taste for moral coercion.
    3. But in identity politics, equality refers to groups, not individuals, and demands action to redress disparate outcomes among groups—in other words, equity, which often amounts to new forms of discrimination. In practice, identity politics inverts the old hierarchy of power into a new one: bottom rail on top. The fixed lens of power makes true equality, based on common humanity, impossible.
    4. With identity politics, the demand became different—not just to enlarge the institutions, but to change them profoundly.

      change these institutions how?

    5. The statement helped set in motion a way of thinking that places the struggle for justice within the self. This thinking appeals not to reason or universal values but to the authority of identity, the “lived experience” of the oppressed. The self is not a rational being that can persuade and be persuaded by other selves, because reason is another form of power.

      The struggle for justice can be found within the self (rather than the group).

      Reason is another form of power.

      How does the idea of justice and self in the first connect (or not) to the Woodard's idea of self with respect to God in the Protestant evangelical America?

    6. The term identity politics was born in 1977, when a group of Black lesbian feminists called the Combahee River Collective released a statement defining their work as self-liberation from the racism and sexism of “white male rule”:
    7. Among white people, 38 percent of college graduates voted for Trump, compared with 64 percent without college degrees. This margin—the great gap between Smart America and Real America—was the decisive one. It made 2016 different from previous elections, and the trend only intensified in 2020.

      Trumps margin.

      How can this gap be closed in the future?

    8. If we mutually exclusively split America into these four classifications, what would be the proportion of people within each?

      What do the overlaps of these four groups look like with respect to Colin Woodard's eleven American Nations?

    9. The overwhelmingly white crowds that lined up to hear Palin speak were nothing new. Real America has always been a country of white people. Jackson himself was a slaver and an Indian-killer, and his “farmers, mechanics, and laborers” were the all-white forebears of William Jennings Bryan’s “producing masses,” Huey Long’s “little man,” George Wallace’s “rednecks,” Patrick Buchanan’s “pitchfork brigade,” and Palin’s “hardworking patriots.”

      An interesting way of tying together some groups of voters over time here. They do have a very common thread in their whiteness.

      What other things do they have in common?

    10. Since then, the two parties have just about traded places. By the turn of the millennium, the Democrats were becoming the home of affluent professionals, while the Republicans were starting to sound like populist insurgents. We have to understand this exchange in order to grasp how we got to where we are.

      I'm definitely curious about how this about face occurred.

    1. or Jonas, one of the questions we must face is this“What force shall represent the future in the present?”

      This is a pressing question which our governments pay far too little attention to.

  2. Jul 2021
    1. Trump had led the country to the brink of its own “Reichstag moment,” viewing him as a potential threat to American democracy.

      -- Gen. Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

    1. Nine of 10 of House Republicans will be white men, calculates David Wasserman of the Cook Political Report, compared to just over one-third of House Democrats.

      117th Congress

    2. The 2016 presidential race had signaled as much. Donald Trump carried 2,584 counties across the country, but calculations by scholars at the Brookings Institution showed that the 472 counties Hillary Clinton carried accounted for nearly two-thirds of U.S. economic output.

      Hillary Clinton: 472 counties = 64% US GDP

      Donald Trump: 2584 counties = 36% US GDP

      Source

    3. districts won by Democrats account for 61 percent of America's gross domestic product, districts won by Republicans 38 percent.
    4. Residents of districts won by Democrats generate 22% more output per worker, and have a 15% higher median household income.
    5. In Democratic districts, 35 percent of residents have college degrees, compared to 28 percent in Republican districts.
    6. Employees are less likely to work in manufacturing (7.2 percent in blue districts, 11 percent in red districts) and more likely to work in digital services (2.5 percent compared to 1.1 percent).
    7. Blue districts have attracted the expanding segments of the U.S. population and workforce; half their residents are non-white. Red districts are 27 percent non-white.
    1. Juan: As a community, we always do wrong. When I was in the US, we had Bernie. I love Bernie, I wish he would have been president, but they chose Hillary instead, and Hillary lost against Trump. Then I come to Mexico, and we had all hopes that this new government was going to do positive things. He is making a change, but it's going downhill right now. My long-term goal is to be able to change the way people view things, because Mexicans can be selfish, they can be ignorant.Juan: That's because that's how they were taught since they were little. What I want to do is change Mexico and take out all the potential that we have, because we have so much potential, we just don't do it, so does the US. The US has so much potential, one of the top ones with the potential, but because of right now with the leaders that we have, we're not able to provide it. Then again, I guess that's overall as a society. We want to change this, let's change this or change that, but we can't, because the person who is ruling is not going to … They have other things in priority.Anne: Maybe you'll be a president.Juan: I want to be president, but I want to make a change [Chuckles].Anne: That's great. Well, thank you very much.Juan: Yeah, no problem.

      Reflections, The United States, Mexico; Feelings, Dreams

  3. Jun 2021
    1. many Democrats had hoped to overwhelm Mr. Trump with a surge in turnout among young and nonwhite voters

      Well, those voters told you who they wanted and it wasn't Biden.

    1. The viciousness of church politics can rival pretty much any other politics you can name; the difference is that the viciousness within churches is often cloaked in lofty spiritual language and euphemisms.

      It would be interesting to examine some of this language and these euphemisms to uncover the change over time.

    2. One of the more incisive comments about the gap we often see between faith and works sticks with me today: that for too many people of the Christian faith, Jesus is a “hood ornament.”

      Jesus is a "hood ornament."

      searing...

    3. “‘Evangelical’ used to denote people who claimed the high moral ground; now, in popular usage, the word is nearly synonymous with ‘hypocrite,’” Timothy Keller, one of the most influential evangelicals in the world, wrote in The New Yorker in 2017.

      Interesting.

      I've found myself looking at statements from Republicans over the past several years and tagging them as "hypocrisy".

      I wonder what the actual overlap of the two groups is?

    4. “In American pop-culture parlance, ‘evangelical’ now basically means whites who consider themselves religious and who vote Republican,” according to the Baylor University historian Thomas Kidd.

      I feel like this is the general case...

    5. Partisan, cultural, and regional identities tend to shape religious identities.

      How?

      Why?

    1. As of 4 September 2020[update], 98 out of 193 (51%) United Nations (UN) member states, 22 out of 27 (81%) European Union (EU) member states, 26 out of 30 (87%) NATO member states, and 31 out of 57 (54%) Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) member states have recognised Kosovo. The government of Serbia does not recognise it as a sovereign state.
  4. May 2021
    1. Stephan Lewandowsky. (2021, May 16). An update to the ‘politics’ page of our COVID-19 vaccination communication handbook. Thanks to @kostas_exarhia for his diligent and constant work on this 1/n https://t.co/ezztaLMEBG [Tweet]. @STWorg. https://twitter.com/STWorg/status/1393996441966858242

    1. the mood music of the hard right from the past two centuries: the people in thrall to deceitful elites, awaiting deliverance by those who know and tell the truth

      an idea equally exploited by Hitler and Trump

    1. Examples of this sort of non-logical behaviour used to represent identity can be found in fiction in:

      • Dr. Seuss' The Butter Battle Book (Random House,1984) which is based on
      • the war between Lilliput and Blefuscu in Jonathan Swift's 1726 satire Gulliver's Travels, which was based on an argument over the correct end to crack an egg once soft-boiled.

      It almost seems related to creating identity politics as bike-shedding because the real issues are so complex that most people can't grasp all the nuances, so it's easier to choose sides based on some completely other heuristic. Changing sides later on causes too much cognitive dissonance, so once on a path, one must stick to it.

    2. Here's a link to the penultimate draft (not for citation): https://www.academia.edu/46814693/The_Signaling_Function_of_Sharing_Fake_Stories

      This broad thesis sounds to me like something I've read before, perhaps in George Lakoff about people signaling group membership or perhaps people with respect to their voting tendencies. The question isn't who should I vote for specifically, but who would someone like me (ie. who would my group, my tribe) vote for?

      This sort of phenomena is likely easier to see/show in sports fans who will tell blatant untruths or delude themselves about the teams of which they are fans.The team winning at all costs will cause them to put on blinders.

      A particular recent example of something like this with relation to what might otherwise be a logical business decision is seen in incoming Amazon CEO Andy Jassy nixing the idea of building in Philadelphia due to his own NFL fandom https://www.phillyvoice.com/amazon-hq2-philly-eagles-giants-rivalry-andy-jassy-jeff-bezos-amazon-unbound/

      Why would someone make a potential multi-million dollar decision over their sports preference?

    1. Beltran, D. G., Isch, C., Ayers, J. D., Alcock, J., Brinkworth, J. F., Cronk, L., Hurmuz-Sklias, H., Tidball, K. G., Horn, A. V., Todd, P. M., & Aktipis, A. (2021). Mask wearing behavior across routine and leisure activities during COVID-19. PsyArXiv. https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/2qya8

  5. Apr 2021
    1. Coinbase's CEO declared his company "apolitical." He says that he thinks of his company as a professional sports team. Paying no attention, it seems, to how actual professional sports teams have responded to social justice issues. He gave people a week to take severance if they disagree.
    1. Sensitivities are at 11, and every discussion remotely related to politics, advocacy, or society at large quickly spins away from pleasant. You shouldn't have to wonder if staying out of it means you're complicit, or wading into it means you're a target.

      This is something that even pre-Socratic philosophers discussed. Not saying something is also saying something.

      Most of what is done by and in a capitalist company is supported by a certain rationale: to make as much money as possible for your shareholders.

      If you care about making money, you speak out against injustices; These injustices could be logical, moral, ethical, or a mixture.

      The phrase 'It's become too much' is a bit vague from Fried, who has written books that advocate speaking out, e.g. 'It Doesn't Have To Be Crazy At Work'.

    1. Political solutions are also only partial because our interregnum has an emotional side, one best explored by writing about art.

      Something about this is reminiscent of the left's reliance on logic and the rights reliance on gut reaction and appeal to emotion. Rational versus emotional.

      How are we to bring the two together?

  6. Mar 2021
    1. His answer was that nature had endowed humans with reason (“logos”) and that, hence, the function of humans is to think and, more specifically, to participate — by way of thinking — in the divine thought that organizes the cosmos.

      F*** you aristotle.

    1. Mitch McConnell, who was accused of laying waste to bipartisan co-operation in the Senate when he blocked a supreme court pick by Barack Obama then changed the rules to hurry through three picks for Donald Trump, has said that if Democrats do away with the filibuster, they will “turn the Senate into a sort of nuclear winter”.

      Guardian, getting the big-long-truth out of the way up front. Woohoo! Exactly the right context. Persistently malignant force in America, that we have been unreceptive & unmoving in every way my entire living life. Bad people.

    1. Democrat Chicago to allow the economy to open up less than a week after Biden's inauguration...it's all planned to make Biden appear successful! Democrats allowed millions of people to suffer and lose businesses all for their own greed and power!
    1. System architects: equivalents to architecture and planning for a world of knowledge and data Both government and business need new skills to do this work well. At present the capabilities described in this paper are divided up. Parts sit within data teams; others in knowledge management, product development, research, policy analysis or strategy teams, or in the various professions dotted around government, from economists to statisticians. In governments, for example, the main emphasis of digital teams in recent years has been very much on service design and delivery, not intelligence. This may be one reason why some aspects of government intelligence appear to have declined in recent years – notably the organisation of memory.57 What we need is a skill set analogous to architects. Good architects learn to think in multiple ways – combining engineering, aesthetics, attention to place and politics. Their work necessitates linking awareness of building materials, planning contexts, psychology and design. Architecture sits alongside urban planning which was also created as an integrative discipline, combining awareness of physical design with finance, strategy and law. So we have two very well-developed integrative skills for the material world. But there is very little comparable for the intangibles of data, knowledge and intelligence. What’s needed now is a profession with skills straddling engineering, data and social science – who are adept at understanding, designing and improving intelligent systems that are transparent and self-aware58. Some should also specialise in processes that engage stakeholders in the task of systems mapping and design, and make the most of collective intelligence. As with architecture and urban planning supply and demand need to evolve in tandem, with governments and other funders seeking to recruit ‘systems architects’ or ‘intelligence architects’ while universities put in place new courses to develop them.
    1. As well as the discussion about what is really meant by a ‘domain of one’s own‘

      Societies have been inexorably been moving toward interdependence. More and more people specialize and sub-specialize into smaller fragments of the work that we do. As a result, we become more interdependent on the work of others to underpin our own. This makes the worry about renting a domain seem somewhat disingenuous, particularly when we can reasonably rely on the underlying structures to work to keep our domains in place.

      Perhaps re-framing this idea may be worthwhile. While it may seem that we own our bodies (at least in modern liberal democracies, for the moment), a large portion of our bodies are comprised of bacteria which are simultaneously both separate and a part of us and who we are. The symbiosis between people and their bacteria has been going on so long and generally so consistently we don't realize that the interdependence even exists anymore. No one walks around talking about how they're renting their bacteria.

      Eventually we'll get to a point where our interdependence on domain registrars and hosts becomes the same sort of symbiotic interdependence.

      Another useful analogy is to look at our interdependence on all the other pieces in our lives which we don't own or directly control, but which still allow us to live and exist.

      People only tend to notice the major breakdowns of these bits of our interdependence. Recently there has been a lot of political turmoil and strife in the United States because politicians have become more self-centered and focused on their own needs, wants, and desire for power that they aren't serving the majority of people. When our representatives don't do their best work at representing their constituencies, major breakdowns in our interdependence occur. We need to be able to rely on scientists to do their best work to inform politicians who we need to be able to trust to do their best work to improve our lives and the general welfare. When the breakdown happens it creates issues to the individual bodies that make up the society as well as the body of the society itself.

      Who's renting who in this scenario?

  7. Feb 2021
    1. Those who are responsible for upholding this system profess to want to fight crime, but they do so by destroying communities.

      This is an obviously emotional appeal that would affect anyone in the audience since most everyone has a sense of community somewhere. This statement also boldly shades those who uphold the system; including judges, cops, lawyers, and politicians.

    1. He is seriously concerned – as many of us are – about the destructive repercussions of identity politics, the censorship of dissenting opinion, and the rewriting of American history.

      A lot of inflammatory dog whistle rhetoric here (not to mention the poor use of en dashes posing as em dashes).

      He calls out destructive repercussions of identity politics, but fails to notice that everyone wants to feel safe in their identity, not just cis-gendered white male Republicans.

      He calls out censorship of dissenting opinion while writing on his own website. When did the government censor his opinions or any other opinions? Republicans are so pro-corporation and pro-enterprise, but then get upset when those same great companies enforce basic social norms?

      And then, in the same breath: "rewriting American history?!" Perhaps we just taking a more nuanced perspective of the actual truths? Maybe we're hearing the stories and perspectives of those who's dissenting opinions have been not only been censored out of the media, but never allowed in for almost 250 years?