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Evgeny Morozov on the Kingdom of Geeks

There is this very bizarre alliance between world-changing geeks on the one hand and pol­i­cy­mak­ers who only care about out­comes. They no longer care about how those out­comes are arrived at. They have stripped pol­i­tics of all mean­ing. All they want is to get peo­ple to do the right thing. They don’t care why they do it.

Roger Scruton on Alternatives to Idealism

The 20th cen­tu­ry was cre­at­ed by ide­al­ism. Communism and fas­cism and Nazism are all based on ide­al­ized sys­tems, what the world should be ide­al­ly, and how it isn’t what it should be, and there­fore we’re enti­tled to change it rad­i­cal­ly and take con­trol of it in order to do so.

Parag Khanna on the Ideal World

For most peo­ple on an indi­vid­ual lev­el most the time, their future still feels very dif­fer­ent from that of oth­er peo­ple. We live in a world, for exam­ple, of enor­mous income inequal­i­ty, right. So even though there is a glob­al econ­o­my, it cer­tain­ly doesn’t feel like one’s sort of day-to-day fate or des­tiny is linked to those of peo­ple around the world, even if it is in very invis­i­ble kinds of ways.

Steven Pinker on Why Doom is not Inevitable

I don’t think that any­thing will save the world in the sense of bring­ing Utopia to Earth. But I think the world could be improved, and that would be the ver­sion of the ques­tion that I’m very much inter­est­ed in.

Margaret Atwood on Fiction, the Future, and the Environment

We have already changed the world a lot, not always for the bet­ter. Some of it’s for the bet­ter, as far as we human beings are con­cerned. But every time we invent a new tech­nol­o­gy, we like to play with that tech­nol­o­gy, and we don’t always fore­see the consequences.

John Gray on Man, Beliefs, and Changes

One of the prob­lems here, of course, is that there’s no we.” Who’s we? I mean, humanity’s composed—the human species is composed—of bil­lions of sep­a­rate indi­vid­u­als with dif­fer­ent goals, dif­fer­ent plans, dif­fer­ent val­ues, and dif­fer­ent ideals.

Steven Pinker on Genetically Re-engineering Human Nature

There are many changes to our insti­tu­tions and our norms and our ideas that can reduce or elim­i­nate the risks of nuclear war with­out what I con­sid­er a rather quixot­ic attempt to change the course of human evolution.

Sean Wilentz on Donald Trump and the Crisis in American Democracy

I don’t think we’ve had any­body quite like Donald Trump before, in terms of the pol­i­tics of celebri­ty, which is what I think he’s real­ly about. It’s not sim­ply that he’s rich. We’ve had rich peo­ple in pol­i­tics before. He’s not sim­ply a busi­ness­man. We’ve had busi­ness­men in pol­i­tics before.

Three Advices for Clinton

I think the inter­est­ing and most dif­fi­cult chal­lenge for Mrs. Clinton if she becomes President is how to bring America together.

Roger Berkowitz on Refiguring American Government

The great dan­ger and fear that I have is that in the last fifty to sev­en­ty years, pow­er has increas­ing­ly con­cen­trat­ed not only in the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment but in the presidency.

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