A lot of people see the political struggle between the Left and the Right as a game of capture-the-flag. We battle the other team to set our candidate on that hilltop, and once we do, we win the game. Thinking along these lines, many Bernie Sanders supporters were certain that if they could just get him elected president, everything would change.… [more]
When the Occupy movement was at its peak, I got an idea about supporting it that I wish I had attempted to promulgate. One of the problems with Occupy was that it was such a small and non-mainstream movement. It consisted primarily of a very small demographic slice of the population, and because of this, it was easier for the police to sweep it away without outraging most ordinary Americans.… [more]
I know that many of you donate a lot of money to progressive causes and candidates, but I recently got an idea for another avenue for societal progress you might pursue. The idea is a general one about a kind of action you can take that combines business, philanthropy, and political activism, but in this post, I'll describe it in terms of a specific type of business.… [more]
We need a new progressive third party. It would be a kind of Bizarro progressive third party, in that it would almost always do the opposite from what current progressive parties like the Green Party are doing today.
- It would not oppose the Democratic Party, but rather, serve as a kind of unofficial educational arm, or like a kind of hyper "50 state strategy."
There's a lot of talk in progressive circles about "The Revolution." This was especially prevalent during the Bernie Sanders campaign. Some progressives had the idea that all that stood between us and Paradise was something so artificial that we could break through it with a single presidential victory. Unfortunately, the actual elephant in the room is far more substantial: the inconvenient truth that there are more conservatives than there are liberals in this country.… [more]
In all our declarations and discussions of how terrible Trump is, or how "broken" our democracy is, or how oppressive the "Establishment" is, let's not forget the doubly metaphorical elephant in the room: the fact that roughly half of our fellow voters cast their ballots for Trump, and that even now, after the disaster his presidency has been so far, a significant number of them still support him.… [more]
I saw the movie "Arrival" yesterday — for the second time. I plan to watch it at least once or twice more, depending on how many friends I can compel to join me. Before I saw it for the first time, I had certain preconceptions about what it would be, based on reviews I'd read. The reviews also told me that I would be surprised by what it actually turned out to be.… [more]
To my mind, the most important line from Bernie's email to his delegates yesterday asking them not to protest was, "But that's not what will expand the progressive movement in this country." For Bernie, the goal is to make actual progress in this country, and he realizes that in order to do that, the progressive movement needs to grow, because right now, we just don't have the votes to elect a presidential candidate like him.… [more]
About a month and a half ago, I wrote a post about why Bernie Sanders was losing the Democratic nomination to Hillary Clinton. Since then, Sanders has done much better in various state primaries, and has closed Clinton's delegate lead from 24% to 10%. Nevertheless, his chances of winning are much lower now than they were then, because there aren't many more delegates up for grabs. … [more]
I recently wrote about how to properly understand scientific studies. In this post, I want to discuss three recent pieces of news that might be producing science cynicism. I'll present each item, give examples of how it might be simplistically misconstrued, and then explain its true significance.… [more]