Beyond Intractability in Context Blog

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Posts ordered from most recent to earliest.

  • As we continue to work hard to make opportunities available for women and girls, a sobering reminder that men and boys need help as well. -- The Crisis of Men and Boys --
  • A worrisome argument that progressives have concluded that today's big issues all fall into the realm of "settled knowledge" where disagreement and debate is no longer appropriate. -- The End of Progressive Intellectual Life --
  • An example of a creative idea that might be able to help us escape today's lose-lose policy options for controlling inflation. We need to cultivate such outside-the-box thinking. -- There Is a Tax That Could Help With Inflation --
  • A rarity in reporting on Ukraine, an authoritative article that explains the complex and dangerous issues surrounding Russian threats to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine (and, perhaps, elsewhere). -- What If Russia Uses Nuclear Weapons in Ukraine? --
  • From Jonathan Haidt, an exploration of the collision between "two incompatible sacred values in American universities" -- truth vs. social justice. -- The Two Fiduciary Duties of Professors --
  • "While people may have been created equal, they are, most certainly, not all alike." A provocative exploration of the nature of equity and equality. -- Misunderstanding Equality --
  • A provocative Substack newsletter that demonstrates that there is a rich diversity of black thought that goes far beyond prevailing orthodoxies. -- Journal of Free Black Thought --
  • An example of the kind of "outside the box" thinking that might help reverse today's dismal political trends. We need to work harder to develop, evaluate, and (where appropriate) implement such ideas. -- What Biden could gain from pardoning Trump --
  • Amid today's political fury, a surprising observation -- the 117th Congress has actually been remarkably functional (often in a bipartisan way). -- A Functional Congress? Yes. --
  • For a world in which we tend to focus on developing our ability to persuade and influence others, a plea, instead, for cultivating our ability to listen to (and be persuaded by) our fellow citizens. -- The art of listening --
  • Because of the rapid rate of social change, differences in the experiences that shape each generation commonly lead to intergenerational tension. To help address this, a reassuring essay about young people. -- The Kids Are Alright --
  • A persuasive argument that the only way in which we can protect ourselves from authoritarian threats (both external and internal) is by recommitting ourselves to working together for the common defense. -- Only Bipartisanship Can Defeat Authoritarian Aggression --
  • For societies to flourish over the long run, they must find ways of assuring that the interests of future generations are protected. -- What We Owe The Future --
  • A persuasive argument for remembering one way in which we can come together, put aside our acrimony, and get about the business of finding mutually beneficial solutions to our common problems. -- Joe Biden should do some boring bipartisan commissions --
  • Perhaps our most deep-rooted instinct is to protect our children. That's why school conflicts are so intense. In this context, a set of essays to help us think things through what matters in education. -- What Is School For? --
  • While there are plenty of things to worry about, we must teach the coming generation to see those concerns in the context of the many things that make life wonderful and our problems surmountable. -- Don’t Teach Your Kids to Fear the World --
  • We all ought to find time to seriously consider thoughtful views from people who deeply disagree with us. This essay, from the Wall Street Journal, offer such a critique of the left. -- The Left Gets Fascism Backward --
  • An interesting exploration of the pros and cons of a new philosophical perspective, "long-termism" -- a set of beliefs focused on what we owe posterity. -- Why ‘longtermism’ isn’t ethically sound --
  • Thoughts on the coming winter and the terrible choice that the Ukrainian war is going to force on Europeans. -- Putin Will Make People Choose Between Heating or Eating This Winter --
  • From Brazil, a look at how frustration and distrust of major social institutions is being amplified and exploited as part of an authoritarian attempt to take over an entire society. -- Bolsonaro Isn’t Preparing for a Coup. He’s Preparing for a Revolution. --
  • A look at the many implications of living in a post-privacy society. -- We’re About to Find Out What Happens When Privacy Is All but Gone --
  • Further insight into the many ways in which China's aggressive, "gray zone" warfare campaign is attacking the fabric of Western society. Our future depends on mounting an effective defense. -- China Is Running Covert Operations That Could Seriously Overwhelm Us --
  • Thought-provoking reflections on how social media is undermining the way in which we think, communicate, and structure our social lives. -- How Social Media Destroys the Things That Matter Most --
  • Reason to believe that we have yet to figure out the set of cultural norms regarding sex, gender, relationships, and family that will reliably lead to rewarding and happy lives. -- Generation Swipe --
  • A look at the way conservative beliefs are evolving in response to the progressive left's ambitious agenda for social change. -- What Is National Conservatism? The movement could be the future of the American right --