1. Thomas Cahill; “Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea”; Doubleday; New York, 2003; p.p. 145-146.
2. Ian Shapiro; “The Moral Foundations of Politics”; Yale University Press; New Haven, 2003; p.p. 224-225.
3. Michael Nelson; “Statistics in Nutrition and Dietetics”; Wiley Blackwell; Oxford, UK; 2020; p.4.
4. The modern scientific environment is highly international. Leading universities draw the world’s best students and researchers from all over the world.
This lucid discussion of “Numbers” was produced by Koreans with staff from many countries. This first season, fifth episode, is available on Amazon Prime. We really recommend it.
5. Anthony Pagden, “The Enlightenment, And Why It Still Matters”; Random House; New York; 2013; p. 27.
6. Shapiro, p.p. 229-230.
7. U.S. social problems, of course, predate Trump. In the 2020 election, 74MM (nearly 47%) of the electorate voted for Trump, an incredibly large number of people are losing faith in the U.S. democratic system. We have no direct experience in this: but what if a right-wing rural Trump supporter had been asked to dismantle his factory to be shipped abroad, what if he then sees his community deteriorate as the younger generations seeks better opportunity on the coasts, what if what remains is increasingly impoverished - wouldn’t he start looking for someone to blame? What if there is now a large practical inconsistency between the operation of impersonal free markets and the ethos of American self-reliance?
According to the 5/23/21 CNN, “Denying the scientific facts of climate change no longer suffices. House Republicans have made honesty a disqualification for party leadership.
Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt are professors of government at Harvard. In their book, “How Democracies Die ”, they note, “The strength of the American political system, it has often been said, rests on…the American Creed, the principles of individual freedom and egalitarianism. Written into our founding documents and repeated in the classrooms, speeches and editorial pages, freedom and equality are self-justifying values.” (We think these universal values are the “objective” characteristics of the American system.) But they are not self-executing. Mutual toleration and institutional forbearance are procedural principles – they tell politicians how to in an behave beyond the bounds of law, to make our institutions function…” *
In a May, 2021 CNN interview with Anderson Cooper: Has there been any other point in American history where Democracy was as threatened as it is potentially now?
Steven Levitsky: The Civil War. Beyond the Civil War, no….We are now convinced there is a serious chance the Republican party tries to steal the 2024 election…. 2020 ended up a dress rehearsal.
To ensure the continued rule of their minority, the GOP is now trying to change voter registration rules in their states. Another major consideration in favor of this idea is what happened to Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court in 2016, 293 days before the next president. Mitch McConnell, then Senate majority leader, refused to schedule a vote on his nomination, thereby opening the way for Trump to appoint his own person.
The Republican Party has become a party divorced from the objective fact that in a real democracy, the people get to choose who, and for how long, one holds power. The GOP, as presently constituted, is now the high-handed anti-democracy party, out of plans and ideas for the future.
* Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt; “How Democracies Die”; Crown; New York; 2018; p. 213.
8. International Energy Agency; Press Release and Report (note Chapter 4); “A Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector ”; May, 2021. There is a lot of detail in this report, usually a sign of a credibility.
9. This outlined consultation process also applies to U.S. cybersecurity. Recent threats to U.S. infrastructure originate from within in the United States; because the CIA and the NSA are enjoined by Congress from acting within U.S. borders. An excellent 3/14/21 NYT article chronicles how, “White House Weighs New Cybersecurity Security Approach After Failure to Detect Hacks.”
The first order of business is to detect system attacks. Biden administration officials. “…said they would seek a deeper partnership with the private sector, tapping the knowledge of emerging hacking threats gathered by technology companies and cybersecurity firms. The hope (also using A.I.)…is to set a real-time threat sharing arrangement whereby private companies would send threat data to a central repository where the government could pair it with intelligence from the National Security Agency, the C.I.A and other spy shops, to provide, a far earlier warning than is possible today.”
The world is complicated, requiring consultation. To pretend it isn’t, will not lead to good results.