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Archive for 19. Juli 2019

Is this who we are?

Posted by hkarner - 19. Juli 2019

Date: 18-07-2019
Source: The New York Times David Leonhardt

Last night, the president of the United States stood in front of his supporters while they chanted about expelling a Muslim-American member of Congress from the United States: Send her back! Send her back! Send her back …“

It was an ugly, lawless, racist sentiment, and President Trump loved it. He had worked the crowd into a frenzy by denouncing the congresswoman, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, and three other House Democrats – all women of color, as well.

„No safe, sane, decent country or leader should ever speak of its own citizens this way,“ Jill Filipovic said on Twitter. „And it’s difficult to put into words how profoundly sad this makes me. Is this who we are? Is it who we want to be?“ Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Age of Cynical Voters

Posted by hkarner - 19. Juli 2019

Sławomir Sierakowski, founder of the Krytyka Polityczna movement, is Director of the Institute for Advanced Study in Warsaw and Senior Fellow at the German Council on Foreign Relations.

Voters who support populist parties and leaders are making political choices that they know to be risky because they feel as though they have nothing to lose. As behavioral economists would predict, people become less risk-averse when the perceived choice is between “bad” and “worse.”

WARSAW – We all know that politicians are cunning and cynical, but could the same now be said for the electorate?

Many of those who voted for US President Donald Trump did so knowing that he is a habitual liar with suspicious ties to Russia, just as the rank and file of the Conservatives in the United Kingdom know that Boris Johnson has and cheated his way to the top. In Poland, it is no secret that the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party is packing governing institutions with its lackeys, misusing public media, rewarding cronies, and undermining the independence of the courts. Nonetheless, PiS trounced Poland’s opposition parties in the European Parliament election in May.The fact that Poles, Britons, and Americans have all ushered in morally bankrupt governments is symptomatic of what German philosopher Peter Sloterdijk described in the early 1980s as “cynical reason.” Sloterdijk argued that, in the absence of widely shared narratives of progress, the Western elites had absorbed the lessons of the Enlightenment, but applied them in the service of narrow self-interest rather than the common good.  Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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