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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the category “Society”

The Population Bust

For most of human history, the world’s population grew so slowly that for most people alive, it would have felt static. Between the year 1 and 1700, the human population went from about 200 million to about 600 million; by 1800, it had barely hit one billion. Then, the population exploded, first in the United Kingdom and the United States, next in much of the rest of Europe, and eventually in Asia.

Read Here – Foreign Affairs

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Beijing, Moscow, And Shades Of The ‘80s

In the early 1980s, there was, of course, no internet, no e-mail, no cell phones (much less smartphones), and not even many fax machines. Rebellions against dictatorship depended on age-old mechanisms to communicate the word of the opposition: leaflets, word of mouth, and secret meetings in cellars.

Read Here – The Bulwark

What Happens When The World’s Population Stops Growing?

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash

Based on the latest figures from the United Nations, demographers’ best guess for when this will happen is about 2100. By then, the global population is projected to have risen to just shy of 11 billion.Africa will be the most populous continent. Islam will be the most popular religion. And there are going to be a lot more old people.

The Terrifying Rise Of Authoritarian Populism

Governments described as populist are now in power in Poland, Hungary, Mexico, and Turkey. Italy and Greece are governed by multiparty populist coalitions, while populists of the left or right are partners in coalition governments in seven other European Union countries. Venezuela is in free fall thanks to the confiscationist policies of a populist government. Brazil has an outspoken populist president. And the ongoing Trumpist takeover of the Republican Party isn’t just a populist spectacle in itself; it has also helped fuel a surge of left-wing populism among the Democrats. Those movements espouse a variety of programs across a wide range of political landscapes. What do they have in common?

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Why Nationalism Works

Nationalism has a bad reputation today. It is, in the minds of many educated Westerners, a dangerous ideology. Some acknowledge the virtues of patriotism, understood as the benign affection for one’s homeland; at the same time, they see nationalism as narrow-minded and immoral, promoting blind loyalty to a country over deeper commitments to justice and humanity.

Read Here – Foreign Affairs

Huntington’s Legacy

Since Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations has been contrasted with my own End of History in countless introductory International Relations classes over the past two decades, I might as well begin by tackling at the outset the issue of how we’re doing vis-à-vis one another. At the moment, it looks like Huntington is winning, writes Francis Fukuyama.

Read Here – The American Interest

Transient Triumphs

Most historical triumphs, we know, are transient. Only recently globalisation appeared an inexorable climax of history. Now it looks to have collapsed. So, it seems, has globalisation’s apparent twin, celebrating diversity within nations. Two other prestigious values, democracy in the polity and equality in society, have also been hit hard.

Read Here- The Indian Express

Obama Beats Trump On Twitter With More Than Double The Following

President Donald Trump prides himself on being able to communicate with the American people directly through his Twitter account, but when it comes to resonating on that platform, former President Barack Obama still had an edge in 2017. Three of Obama’s tweets were among the 10 most retweeted this year, while none of Trump’s made the list, according to Twitter’s year-end analysis.

Read Here – Bloomberg

Our New Culture Of Cruelty

The logic in these arguments, whether derived from Newtonian physics or the national interest, is always as impeccable as it is morally numb. This is why around the world we confront a bigger crisis than the one commonly linked to political and economic dysfunction. Demagogues are mere symptoms of an ethical breakdown. The more disturbing pathology is of people entrenched in different value systems, viciously hostile to each other.

Read Here – BloombergView

The Anger-Fuelled, Social-Media-Driven World Of Humour In The Trump Age

It’s no coincidence this evolution has coincided with the rise of social media. The only thing that can accelerate a topic online better than outrage is humour—combine the two and you have a potent tool for reaching millions. (Hell, even protest signs—“We shall overcomb”—spawn top-10 lists.)

Read Here – Wired

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