Mike Pence as a Litmus Test for Your Feelings on Trump

Mike Pence as a Litmus Test for Your Feelings on Trump

I live in Boston, so I get to hear a lot of concerns about Trump as president.

Every president gets flak, often unfair or hyperbolic, from people in the political opposition. 

But there's something unique about opposition to Trump that I haven't heard said about Bush, McCain, Romney, or Rubio/Kasich/Cruz: there is a strong strain of opinion that Trump is fundamentally unfit to be president.

When Mike Pence gets brought up as an alternative, a very important litmus test occurs.

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The Cycles of Government and Civic Virtue

The Cycles of Government and Civic Virtue

Plato wrote about it in Republic; Machiavelli wrote about it in The Prince and Discourses on Livy.

What they saw through the history of governments, and what they predicted in the future, was a cycle. Perhaps an endless one. Fukuyama said history ended. He may be wrong.

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Two-Party System Drowning US Politics; Ireland Offers a Lifeboat

Two-Party System Drowning US Politics; Ireland Offers a Lifeboat

Of the United States’ many political problems, one glaring issue is the fact that we have a two-party system representing a wide array of opinions.

It’s a bigger problem than most people think. But it doesn't have to be this way.

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Nazis, Communists, and Free Speech

Nazis, Communists, and Free Speech

For all their differences, national socialism and communism have one essential similarity: they both justify mass murder by promising utopia. Their versions of utopia differ, but they are believed to be attainable, not theoretical. First, though, society must pass through a period of chaos, anarchy and mass violence. This transition period - the struggle -  is endured since what comes after is expected to be a revolutionary better world.  But the need to endure a time of extreme violence is not a small part of either philosophy - it is a core aspect of both. A better world can be had. But first there must be killing.

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Do Democracies Die Without External Enemies?

Do Democracies Die Without External Enemies?

Do democracies die without external enemies?

The United States has come a long way from its "consensus" period in the cold war. Many people worry that the Republic is falling apart. There are indeed similarities between the United States and the late Roman Republic, and even the late Athenian Democracy, which tore themselves apart internally. There is a growing sense that democracy, even in Europe, is starting to go off the rails. 

Is this due, ironically, to peace in Europe?

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Why Don't International Laws Matter?

Why Don't International Laws Matter?

Imagine: You’re afraid. Fidgeting, you rub your fingers against the palm of your hand and feel the clammy coolness of half-evaporated sweat. You’ve done something wrong, and they’re after you. The penalty for your crime will be forfeiting a great portion of your life spent staring through a tiny window on one side of your claustrophobic hole and the spaces between metal bars on the other. The only freedom from your cell will be spent surrounded by dangerous characters that have done even worse than you.

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We Really Need to Sort Out How Government Works

We Really Need to Sort Out How Government Works

Is running the country like a CEO a really bad idea? That depends on how we understand how government works. 

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A Theory on Trump's Electoral Upset by The Guy That Invented Modern Polling

A Theory on Trump's Electoral Upset by The Guy That Invented Modern Polling

I got to meet Pat Caddell, who has worked in presidential offices and campaigns since the Carter Administration. He has done a combination of personal interviews, polling, and soul-searching to get a sense of why Trump won the election when, in his words, Trump had no real strategy, few solid positions, and very little in the way of a campaign at all. 

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The Atlantic Makes ReConsider Great Again

The Atlantic Makes ReConsider Great Again

In the Atlantic’s April 2017 issue there is a powerful read called “Making Athens Great Again.” It recounts the faltering of Athens with the execution of Socrates then its renewal with Plato’s creation of the Academy. It discusses why a nation with a sense of exceptionalism must include self-criticism and self-questioning to be worthy of itself. It is an article recounting an ancient history that is still relevant.


But it has some problems.

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Please Don't Remove Politicians from Politics

Please Don't Remove Politicians from Politics

"Could Technology Remove Politicians from Politics?" So is the question posed by Motherboard, exploring the idea of a democracy app, where you vote directly on issues. 

There's a strong sense of a major problem and a deep desire for a big shake-up, rather than just another election. And no doubt there are major problems. But please, please do not go with cutting the politicians out of politics as the solution. 

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