Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Habermas and the global metropolitan lattice



Today, Jürgen Habermas again rightly stresses need for greater German solidarity with the EU Project. Obviously, “the increasing functional interdependence of a more and more integrated world society” causes need for new ways to understand cooperation, coordination, and collaboration.

But he steers away from appeals for more bilateral relations that, in his view, “will drive the European countries even farther apart.” But perhaps arrays of bilateral relations can be coordinated more constructively within the Europe2020 Project than more-centralized coordinations.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

for a humanistic politics of mindful belonging



My early March update turned out to be a two-part sketch (below the line or “Read more”), premised on the coincidence of a theology student’s performance just before I intended to write a note about politics. I don’t mind that a sense of spirituality is thought to background a sense of humanism. That’s fair to a reader not much interested in philosophy or public policy. But it was an improvisation. Presently, I don’t have time to get more insightful or useful; so, I’ve reproduced that two-part thing as two sections of this posting, looking forward to mid-April.


Friday, March 3, 2017

the Trump show in American government



My title here might serve to label a long story to come: Trump playing president within the estate of USAmerican government that overwhelms him, profoundly preceding him, and destined to contain him, if not cause his disappearance from his stage.

That could be a great story of how government successfully constrains tendencies toward authoritarianism.

Friday, February 3, 2017

note to the EU President
—and some philosophical context



Earlier this week, I sent a message to the President of the European Union—seriously. I did it seriously. Of course, it’s comical to think that I reached anyone beyond a clerical screener. But the act will be useful for later discussion online.

I responded to a letter to EU heads of state by Donald Tusk that was posted for public purusal on the EU Council home page (link upcoming). The EU President was expressing very well the spirit of need for EU solidarity in facing immanent challenges. But he was invalidly equating (1) the travesty of Trump playing autocrat and (2) a general threat to U.S.-E.U. relations, as if The Donald has general public support. So, why not share my view of the matter, as a student of European affairs who can speak for the American situation validly?

Friday, January 6, 2017

entertaining the Don daze: the U.S. presidency
as “reality” TV



The point of this is just to summarize my attitude toward the upcoming Trump presidency, if you want my opinion. Then, I want to leave this behind and write online this year about what interests me, which I’m not quite ready to do, but I’m close; another couple of weeks at the most.

To me, the emerging reality of the Trump presidency is more insulting by the day. Trump was not legitimately elected, as I'll detail later here. But I’m reassured by the lucidity of leading journalism about what’s happening (e.g., the NYTimes Editorial Board yesterday).

Persons outside the U.S. shouldn’t worry that Trump will be able to cause international havoc, because he can’t ignore reality putting itself in his face. (If you haven’t seen that video, you must at least see minutes 2:00 through 6:30 about the prospect that The Donald ran for president not because he cared to do anything good for anyone, but because he’s a narcissist who simply sought revenge—and continues to do so, even this day.) As Vice President Biden said yesterday, Trump should “grow up.” And today, no one seems to be blaming Biden for saying that.

Friday, June 24, 2016

the Brexit vote is not legally binding


updated June 25, then at the very end July 2.

Britain has a chance to undo its self-defeating Brexit decision. All of this does not have to actually lead to Britain leaving the EU.

Everything I’ve read about the chaos now of the Brexit vote pertains to coping with the result. I’ve seen nothing in the leading press that indicates that anyone has good reason to believe that the Brexit vote is good for Britain. The Remain vote prevailed in major cities, among highly educated voters, and younger voters—along with all of Scotland. The Leave vote prevailed in English provinces, among the underemployed in metro suburbs, among lower educated voters, and among older voters.

The Bexit vote is not legally binding. If Parliament decided against invoking Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, they would not be ignoring populist will, if such a decision is part of leadership that realistically addresses public needs. To decide differently is not the same as deciding against the populist will. Not invoking Article 50 would be contrary to only 3.6% more of the British population than voted to Remain (and would be congruent with the more-astute plurality of the public).

Saturday, June 18, 2016

What makes one argument better than another?



For a given decision (whether or not I vote for issue “I”), one looks at the arguments for each case and may argue for choosing acceptance (“Yes”) or rejection. I’ll say I do that, but this is not about a choice I have to make. One says or thinks “I look at the arguments...”

If I make an argument for a choice, then that presentation is based in the way I “look at” the arguments for each—how I regard each argument—such that the argument for one option is better than the other (judged better, but maybe as my deliberative recognition that one is better—“simply” is better: more appealing, more compelling, even though I haven’t reconstructed my deliberative process for the sake of self-reassurance or persuasive efficacy).