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Books, Literature & Ideas

Books, Literature & Ideas

The Price of Empire ~ Umair Haque


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  • But violence and greed and cruelty cannot lead anyone anymore to prosperity in the 21st century. There is nobody left to colonize and exploit left but yourself, your very own society, in a world which is out of easy frontiers and helpless peoples.
  • The price of empire is a nation's soul.

Robert Gore, Eudaimonia / Straight Line Logic

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January 19, 2019 | It’s a striking fact of today’s world that the two rich societies in shocking, swift, sharp decline are America and Britain. Nowhere else in the world, for example, are real income, life expectancy, happiness, and trust all plummeting, apart from maybe Venezuela (No, “but at least we’re not Venezuela!” is not the bar to aim for, my friends.) Their downfall is, of course, a self-inflicted catastrophe. But the interesting question is: why? And what does it tell us about what it takes to prosper and thrive in the 21st century, which is something that America and Britain clearly aren’t doing, and maybe aren’t capable of doing?

Here’s an equally curious observation. America and Britain aren’t just any countries. They are the former hegemons of the world’s most powerful empires. Britain, until the first half of the 20th century, and America, picking up where Britain left off. Is this just a strange cosmic coincidence — that it is the two greatest empires of the most recent past who are the ones seemingly most incapable of meeting the challenges of the 21st century? There aren’t coincidences that great, my friends. Such tides of history always whisper lessons to be learned. What is this one trying to urgently teach us?

https://cdn-images-1.medium.com/fit/c/100/100/0*lI5-avJvcBbQDmA2.jpeg / Umair Haque, author and one of the world's leading thinkers, is the Director of the London-based Havas Media Lab and heads Bubblegeneration, a strategy lab that helps discover strategic innovation.

Robert Gore is a featured writer on The Savvy Street, and,  although he engages in political commentary, he enthusiastically shuns politics.

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Make sure many more people see this. It's literally a matter of life an death. Imperial lies kill! Share widely.


 

It's Time for Journalism to Stand Up to Trump

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  • Part 1: Trump Is Running Against The Media. Why Does The Media Keep Helping Him?
  • The press should know the name of this game by now.
  • Part 2: It’s Time for Journalism to Stand for Something.
  • Because journalism couldn’t afford to make enemies, it gave up its moral compass. 

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Part 1: Trump Is Running Against The Media. Why Does The Media Keep Helping Him?

https://www.motherjones.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/20181105_trumppress-2000px.jpg?resize=990,556 / Donald J. Trump talks to reporters before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House on November 4, 2018 in Washington, DC.Oliver Contreras/CNP/ZUMA


The press should know the name of this game by now.

Monika Bauerlein, Mother Jones

November 6, 2018 | The “magazine” was mostly laughable with its bad cartoons and red accent fonts that wouldn’t have looked out of place in a fifth-grade Halloween party flyer. But it was also a perfect metaphor for the 2018 election, and the fight that we’re in for the next two years.

The 40-page hunk of glossy paper was campaign literature for Devin Nunes, the Republican congressman now best known for using the House probe of Russian election interference to peddle conspiracy theories about an FBI plot against Donald Trump. Thanks to that notoriety, Nunes—who in 2016 was reelected with 68 percent of the vote—has faced an unusually strong challenge this year. But the campaign he chose to run was not really against the Democrat, Andrew Janz. It was against the hometown newspaper.

Monika Bauerlein is CEO of Mother Jones.

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Part 2: It’s Time for Journalism to Stand for Something.

https://www.motherjones.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/20180918_trump-crown_2000.jpg?resize=990,555 / Mother Jones illustration; Alex Brandon/AP; Getty

Because journalism couldn’t afford to make enemies, it gave up its moral compass. 

Monika Bauerlein, Mother Jones

September 19, 2018 | There are moments when you can tell what they will feel like in retrospect: hitting bottom, a dam cracking. Between Michael Cohen’s guilty plea, Paul Manafort’s conviction, a cascade of semi-mutinous signals from inside the White House, and a slew of polls and election results showing the extraordinary civic energy building for the midterms, the last month had that quality.





Fairness and accuracy are not served by pretending to have no point of view. They are served by acknowledging where you’re coming from and then being rigorous about following the facts where they lead.



It felt like truth breaking, if briefly, through the miasma of lies. Like confirmation that the institutions of democracy cannot be bent at will by an authoritarian impulse, or fully paralyzed by its enablers.

Monika Bauerlein is CEO of Mother Jones.

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Help enlighten others. Be sure to pass this on to friends and kin. We must break the system's  ability to lie with impunity.

Hope and Love in the Time of Trump

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  • Part 1: Hope in the Time of Trump
  • Three excellent speakers--sponsored by Yorkshire Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
  • Part 2: To Love This Broken-Hearted Country
  • I want to love this broken-hearted country, this land of shattered dreams and dashed hopes.

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest
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Part 1: Hope in the Time of Trump, Yorkshire Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND)

From the Hope in the Time of Trump conference three excellent speakers--sponsored by Yorkshire CND.

Matt Fawcett, Yorkshire Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) / Rise Up Times

https://yorkshirecnd.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/CND-AGM-3428-770x513.jpgJanuary 29, 2019 | These talks at the Hope in the Time of Trump conference organized by the Yorkshire Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament include three excellent speakers: Paul Rogers, Current threats to peace and how we respond; Janet Fenton, Progress on the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons; and Fabian Hamilton (MP), Labour’s Peace Doctrine. Each talk is less than 15 minutes.

We had some excellent speakers for our Hope in the Age of Trump meeting in Leeds, for those who weren’t able to be there we’ve included audio or video here <https://riseuptimes.org/2019/02/24/hope-in-the-time-of-trump-yorkshire-c....

Matt Fawcett: Author at Yorkshire Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND)

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Part 2: To Love This Broken-Hearted Country

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1376/4602805654_db8b6569fb_z.jpg / Image by Chris Devers via Flickr

I want to love this broken-hearted country, this land of shattered dreams and dashed hopes. I want to help us rise, together, and embody our visions of equality and respect, caring and connection, justice and transformation. I want to fall in love again … so that we all might heal and live and change.

Rivera Sun, Dandelion Salad

09 Dec 2018 | I want to love this broken-hearted country, this land of shattered dreams and dashed hopes. I want to place my ear to the drumming cadence of our cities and hear the insistent pulse of life. I want to wander the forgotten highways of stories that run like wrinkles through our body politic.

Our nation is more than just our headlines. We are the collective sum of all our people, past and present, and as far into our uncertain future as we dare to imagine. We are our stories, sordid and sublime, humble and extraordinary. We are our conversations as we sit on our porches, or crouch on concrete stoops. We are our tragedies and horrors. We are every newborn hope.

Rivera Sun: Writer, Dandelion Salad

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Clerical cronyism and secrecy shielded McCarrick and others.

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 / Cardinal Theodore McCarrick arrives at a meeting of cardinals in advance of the conclave to elect a new pope at the Vatican in March 2013. (CNS/Reuters/Max Rossi)

Then-Cardinal McCarrick was apparently used to living a double life and thought no one would reveal the truth. And one thing is for sure. His case is not unique.

Peter Daly, National Catholic Reporter

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Oct 22, 2018 | Two months into the sex abuse scandal that forced Theodore McCarrick to renounce his cardinal's red hat and withdraw to a Capuchin friary in Kansas, Catholics are still asking, "How did this happen?" How does someone like McCarrick advance to the pinnacle of Catholic power and stay there for so long when he carries so much baggage of crime and sin? Was there no vetting? Were there no background checks? Was someone protecting him?

If there is any "malpractice" in this scandal, it belongs to the various papal nuncios (Vatican ambassadors) and the members of the Congregation for Bishops in Rome, who are responsible for checking the backgrounds of candidates for the episcopacy. They did not do their jobs. It also belongs to McCarrick's patrons and promoters in America and in Rome, including Cardinals Francis Spellman (archbishop of New York 1939-67) and Terence Cooke (archbishop of New York 1968-83) and Pope John Paul II. All three were enchanted by McCarrick's fundraising skills.

Peter Daly is a retired priest of the Washington Archdiocese and a lawyer. After 31 years of parish service, he now works with Catholic Charities.

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The Controversial Conundrum That Is the Electoral College

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  • Part 1: From the Archives | The Electoral College Was Meant to Stop Men Like Trump From Being President
  • The founders envisioned electors as people who could prevent an irresponsible demagogue from taking office.
  • Part 2: The Electoral College Conundrum
  • There’s no consensus on abolishing the Electoral College, which has countered the popular vote in two of the past five presidential elections.
  • Related: Effort to Abandon Electoral College Gains Steam. Here’s What It Would Ruin for America

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Part 1: From the Archives | The Electoral College Was Meant to Stop Men Like Trump From Being President

https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/mt/2016/11/RTSSEN9-1/lead_720_405.jpg?mod=1533691859 / Mike Segar / Reuters

The founders envisioned electors as people who could prevent an irresponsible demagogue from taking office.

Peter Beinart, the Atlantic

Nov 21, 2016 | Americans talk about democracy like it’s sacred. In public discourse, the more democratic American government is, the better. The people are supposed to rule.

But that’s not the premise that underlies America’s political system. Most of the men who founded the United States feared unfettered majority rule. James Madison wrote in Federalist 10 that systems of government based upon “pure democracy … have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property.” John Adams wrote in 1814 that, “Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself.”

Peter Beinart is a contributing editor at the Atlantic and an associate professor of journalism and political science at the City University of New York.

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Part 2: The Electoral College Conundrum

https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/mt/2018/11/GettyImages_541661822_1/lead_720_405.jpg?mod=1542921364 / Senator Birch Bayh delivers a speech in New Hampshire during his 1976 presidential campaign.Owen Franken / Corbis / Getty

There’s no consensus on abolishing the Electoral College, which has countered the popular vote in two of the past five presidential elections.

Parker Richards,  the Atlantic

Nov 23, 2018 | Even in the pantheon of maligned features of the American republic—gerrymandering, the Senate, first-past-the-post, voter repression—the Electoral College stands out. It’s a chimera, a system that serves as a rubber stamp when it’s working well, and as a massive, semi-automatic check on the popular will when it’s not. Formed as a deliberative body, it now has only a ceremonial semblance of such a function. The position of elector is essentially a sinecure that conveys no real financial or reputational rewards.

Almost half a century before Donald Trump became president, his victory was nearly undone. It was a close thing: The House of Representatives easily passed a constitutional amendment that would have eliminated the electoral college. The Senate was getting closer and closer, just a few votes shy of the required two-thirds majority. Then the midterms came along, and Senator Birch Bayh of Indiana, an auteur of constitutional amendments second only to James Madison, was forced to shelve the proposal.  

Parker Richards is an editorial fellow at the Atlantic.

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Related:

Effort to Abandon Electoral College Gains Steam. Here’s What It Would Ruin for America. Jarrett Stepman, the Daily Signal / Intellectual Takeout

https://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/ito/files/field/image/8202951245_5012303a7c_k.jpgThis misguided attempt to subvert the Constitution (is) partisan and historically ignorant. It overlooks … that the Electoral College has produced … a stable political system that forces politicians to reckon with our nation’s diverse needs.
 

 

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