Monday, 18 January 2021
Ideas Are Too Exciting; Arguments Are Too Hard
Thursday, 14 January 2021
How Is It No One's Job To Defend Democracy?
Why did it take until now for a critical mass of key players to take a stand against Trump's assault on democracy? Why wasn't it already enough when he pointedly declined to promise to accept the results of the election if he lost, during the 2016 presidential debates?
Saturday, 9 January 2021
Politics Would Be Less Crazy If Voting Were Compulsory
Before politicians can do anything else, they must win election by getting more votes than their opponents. This is supposed to ensure that only those politicians whose ideas and values are most agreeable to the most people have the chance to rule. One might naively suppose that democratic competitions would therefore focus on clearly communicating those ideas and values so that the voters can tell which candidate they most prefer. In practise that is not what happens. This is because voters must choose not only which politician they prefer but also whether to formally register that preference by voting. The politicians' challenge is that while forming a political opinion is effectively free, voting is a mildly inconvenient task that it is entirely rational for most people not to bother with.