Three-quarters of the world’s food today comes from just 12 crops and five animal species and this leaves supplies very vulnerable to disease and pests that can sweep through large areas of monocultures.
“Without common ideas, there is no common action, and without common action men still exist, but a social body does not. Thus in order that there be society, and all the more, that this society prosper, it is necessary that all the minds of the citizens always be brought together and held together by some principle ideas”
―Alexis de Tocqueville,
We are at a moment when mobs on the left and the right ignore evidence and destroy scapegoats. That’s when we need good leaders most.
David Brooks via NYT
Donald Trump appears to have a straightforward definition of fake news: Stories that are critical of him or his presidency are “fake,” while those that praise him are “real.”
In my recent research, I’ve been reverse-engineering fabricated news articles from the 19th century to analyze their logic, and I’ve discovered that
fake news is effective because it tells you something about the world that you, in a way, already know.
Oxford English Dictionary crowned its international word of the year: post-truth. The dictionary defined it as “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”
Consider that oldest of cons, the shell game.
George Orwell, the most fearless of commentators, was right to point out that public opinion is no more innately wise than humans are innately kind. People can behave foolishly, recklessly, self-destructively in the aggregate just as they can individually.
“Public opinion is no more innately wise than humans are innately kind”
This is not the first time the Liberal Story has faced a crisis of confidence. Ever since this story gained global influence, in the second half of the nineteenth century, it has endured periodic crises.
The Brexit vote was a triple protest: against surging immigration, City of London bankers, and European Union institutions, in that order.
Read the Full article here on Project syndicate : The Meaning of Brexit