Follow the Leader (or not)


On the one hand we’re told that politicians cautiously hold a finger to the wind before acting and lack the courage to get ahead of their constituents. On the other, when politicians step forward—as Obama did on the TPP or ACA or David Cameron did on EU affiliation or Angela Merkel on immigration—their positions are deemed proof of the growing gulf between the governing elite and the masses who would be impacted. Continue reading Follow the Leader (or not)

Why Trump is Velcro, Not Teflon…


Many people vote to send a message of rage and to shake things up, but I suspect just as many vote to maximize the fun of watching all that tumultuousness play out in the media. I include myself; I feel that undertow.

We’re not just voting for a candidate, we’re voting for an experience — the rush of crisis, the thrill of combat, the high of “breaking news,” the squirt of dopamine when something crazy could happen next. The electorate has become the audience, and the audience has become addicted to entertainment.

Continue reading Why Trump is Velcro, Not Teflon…

Attention must be paid (except to climate change)

Mt_Herschel,_Antarctica,_Jan_2006 Think of it: Along all 95,000 miles of American coastline – not to mention coastlines all over the earth – “immense areas will most likely have to be abandoned to the rising sea.” Los Angeles, New York, London, Shanghai, Sydney, you name it: all the coastal cities of the world will be vulnerable to the same fate as Atlantis. Continue reading Attention must be paid (except to climate change)

Delusional Politics Feed Public Frustration

trump and sandersIt would be nice if Jeb Bush could deliver on his promise to make America’s economy grow by 4% annually.

And it would be nice if Bernie Sanders could enact programs estimated to cost $18 trillion over a decade to provide us all with health and higher education without worrying about how to pay the bills, an outcome that would be more achievable if our economy grew 4% a year.
Continue reading Delusional Politics Feed Public Frustration

What is Corruption?

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 7.42.23 PMI’m chronically ending up on the wrong side of debates about many types of corruption, I’ve come to wonder whether there’s any agreement on what non-illegal corruption looks like or whether I’ve simply been so corrupted for so long that I’m devoid of the moral sensitivity displayed by critics. Continue reading What is Corruption?