Showing all posts tagged democracy:
It's almost like you can feel it in the air, if you listen. The will of a people toward freedom -- listing this way and that. Maybe someday stumbling onto it.
But then, how to keep it...
The current legislative extremism of the ruling GOP majority is already legendary. And over and over again I hear from the far-left the repeated mantra that Democrats need to move further left to win elections.
The graph above illustrates why -- you don't gain any new supporters by doubling down on the territory you already have. You have to find ways to accommodate something from the center to gain ground. This is the essence of the Median Voter Theorem.
"Ah, but wait!" you say -- "the Median Voter Theorem is so fraught with assumptions. In the real world, these conditions are rarely all true!"
True, true, my astute friend. However, statistics sees to that as well. It allows us to ask what we should expect to see given many many trials and sets of conditions, such that we get an even truer, richer, weighted average than we would from simply measuring a single empirical event. The central limit theorem tells us that with sample sizes large enough, the distribution o...
There's something those of us in marginalized groups know instinctively, having lived lives long in opposition to a dizzying continuum of Absurd Moral Authority: from outright violence, to secretive "technical" manipulations of statutes designed to erode or remove rights, to vague and carefully unstated "wink wink nudge nudge" moments from individuals of authority who had some power to constrain us -- whether it's a boss (or potential boss), a teacher, a community figure, and/or perhaps most guttingly a family member.
We know the sting of being scolded for even daring an attempt at upsetting the Tautological Supremacist Meritocracy: "If you weren't worthless, you'd already be here by now!"
The British thought we would just roll over too
But we should remember one of the primary reasons that we as a nation even won our independence in the first place:
We were underestimated.
Lord North offered tax relief to the colonies that would help "defend the motherland" in February, 1775 -...
Missed in the hubbub about the (rightly) criticized PR gaffe of George Lucas is the kernel of truth in his statement: that whether you're being paid $4 billion or $0.00 to SHOO! go away, you're going to resent being shown the door. Even when you knew it was coming -- and especially when you didn't. And/or expected the opposite.
Now imagine if you didn't feel like you had any agency whatsoever in the transaction. People resist what they do not choose.
Yet resistance to being dictated to is a good thing. It's how we know we still live in a civil society -- which, frankly, can no longer be taken for granted these days. Ask yourself the question now and then. Ask it of others. Ask it of people from different walks of life. Remember the melting pot? Once that was our pride and joy. The strength of a nation.
Places still we believe it. Many states still it's gospel... others anathema.
Some days I'm a believer -- others, apostate.