Observations on politics and related matters - a discursive scrapbook

Solutions to many, though not all, problems in only 30,000 words

Carl Schurz: My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right. Tony Blair: At the heart of this [new policy agenda] has to be an alliance between those driving the technological revolution, in Silicon Valley and elsewhere, and those responsible for public policy in government. At present, there is a chasm of understanding between the two. First Warning: Reading about politics might depress you! Second Warning: Reading about politics might make you sick! W. Kahan: It's a lot easier to prepare a long talk than a short one. J. Varah: In the next 45 minutes, Prof. Kahan will proceed to deliver a 90 minute talk.

After the 2016 election there was a lot of despair in California, so I wrote some observations on politics and the Hamilton Electors, for the encouragement of some despondent friends.

Since then the despondent have become energized by events like

Many veteran and first-time political enthusiasts are now actively working toward the 2018 election, and can easily find many sources of encouragement.

But once I started reading and writing about politics, it was not so easy to stop, so I kept going, mostly for the benefit of my children. What follows is a scrapbook of ideas and references.

Third Warning:

Authority matters. 
Readers will look to authors who have standing, either because they have expertise in their field or unique experience of a subject. 
If you can offer neither on a given topic you should not write about it.

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool 
than to click Publish and remove all doubt.

Lao Tzu:
Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.

These observations might be no more prescient than my writings about the Hamilton Electors, since I have no credentials whatever in politics, journalism, law, history, economics, or theology. I'm a technologist but I prepare my own income taxes so I know more about that than most legislators. But since the next few years are going to be amateur hour for American political hobbyism, here's my amateur take on the essential Democratic program for the next four years:

Democrats gained the House in 2018, but may lose it in 2022. Gerrymandering is as strong as ever.

Start with some current events -

Hot Topics

These started out as Facebook postings, then I tried to convert them to paid Facebook advertising. This is complicated - no links to Washington Post are allowed and there are numerous other restrictions on content. So I ended up converting them to pages on my website and advertising links to them.

Related Sites

Some hot topics got separate focused websites:

Specific improvements in democratic processes:

Not offended yet? Perhaps one of these discussions of controversial issues will fix that:

Consider some political theory:

But what can we do now about Trump? - 2017 version

What about journalism?

Social Media Adventures

Isn't there more to life than politics?

Site contents:

Hot topics from impeachment:


Related websites:

Acknowledgements: none of the problems posed or solutions proposed here are new; my interest in some of these topics was engendered in large and small ways by many people, none of whom can be blamed for the result. A chronological list of some of these people:

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