In 2017, I started reading a ton of books and other material to educate myself on the world of politics.
Boy was I in for a surprise.
Up until that point, I was so darn sure of myself. So sure of my political opinions. I knew better.
Well, egg on my face.
Turns out, I didn't know much about the reality US politics.
I do now.
Here are some of the books that I recommend the most when it comes to US politics.
It doesn't represent everything I've read, not by a long shot, but it's a great place...
I get it.
It can be quite jarring to see someone like me express myself in such strong terms politically as I do, especially on Twitter.
I get it.
I've been called everything from reactionary, to a conspiracy theorist, to racist, bigot, classist, dangerous, and worse.
I guess it comes with the territory.
It wasn't always like this
I used to be a fan of Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, the New York Times, and the Democrat party.
I watched every episode of The Daily Show from 2003 till the end of...
When you raise the minimum wage, a lot of things are bound to happen, to different degrees.
- Costs go up
- Profits go down
- Fewer people get hired
- People get hired for fewer hours
- People make more money
- People buy more stuff
- Tax revenue goes up
- Welfare payments go down
- People save more
- People have been priced out of the market and can't get a job
- Companies invest more in automation, leading to permanent job loss
- Workers improve their skills because the low-skilled jobs are gone
- Prices go up
I've been trying to figure out what's up and down when it comes to climate change. For years, something's felt off with the religious nature of the people who advocate drastic action against climate change.
The first time this happened was back in 2001 when Bjørn Lomborg had just burst onto the scene with his book The Skeptical Environmentalist. His argument was basically that, sure, the world is heating up, but trying to fight this by reducing CO2 through switching to wind and solar...
My friend and colleague Nick told me about a therapist who'd told him that the first 5-10 sessions, people usually need to just vent and get all their anger out. Only then can we get to the real issues. I'm thinking there might be a point here.
Then this morning, I was listening to a book on the law of attraction, and it mentioned that if you're feeling depressed, moving from depression to anger is actually a step up, a move in the right direction. It's a first step towards joy and bliss...
One of the top one or two biggest issues we have in politics and public life in general right now is the limits to free speech, BAMN being a prime example ("no free speech for fascists"!), though it's much much bigger than them.
What pains me is that it's mostly the left that wants to enforce this taboo on what can be said and what can't be said.
The only limits on free speech should be direct threats of violence. Anything beyond that inevitably leads to authoritarianism, which is where...
I haven't read the book, but I got his main points: Climate change is real, but a lot of the science out there is overstated, and the way we're trying to approach it is costly and ineffective. Let's apply a cost/benefit analysis to how we approach it. Let's invest in innovation, not subsidies or taxes. And let's spend...
If we're having a political conversation, and you’re visibly upset and aggravated, that's okay. It just means that we cannot take your words at face value right now. We have to figure out what's underneath the anger or the defensiveness or the posturing, so we can continue the conversation.
When we're triggered (upset, angry, sad, hurt), we get tunnel vision. We cannot see or think straight. Let’s talk that through, so we can get you back to your full resources.
It's okay to...
A reader was kind enough to engage me in conversation. I love when that happens, and I'm super grateful. Here's the conversation. I'm not revealing the name of the other person, just wanted to share the content.
This was in response to my blog post What if everything that's wrong with politics is wrong with all of us?
Why is there a problem with "all" of us ?
This notion seems awfully politically correct to me. There's a problem with racists and nazis.
I want to organize a series of conversations. Dialogs, even. Two opposing viewpoints, me in the middle.
The idea is to let one party speak, while the other two listen and genuinely try to understand where the other person is coming from, what their fears are, their desires, their values, and their thinking. The goal is not to figure out where they're right or wrong, but only to fully understand their point of view, with an open and curious mind and an open, caring heart. Then we turn to the...