Posts Tagged ‘democracy’

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Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the Colombian writer and political activist, in Mexico City in 1976.

During all those years I spent working in and on Latin America, reading the works of Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez (along with those of a few others, such as Mário de Andrade, José María Arguedas, and Carlos Fuentes) helped me understand what was going on—from the real effects of colonialism and the wielding of power by corrupt dictators to the magic contained in everyday life.

Now that we are beginning to understand that the United States is an oligarchy, not a democracy, where is our own García Márquez?

 

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This is an extended interview with Nobel Prize winner and MIT Professor Emeritus Robert M. Solow in which, among other things, he supports the view, recently enunciated by Pope Francis, that trickle-down economics “has never been confirmed by the facts.”

I’ll admit I have a soft spot in my heart for Solow, who wrote a letter to the President of the University of Notre Dame back in 2003 opposing the idea of splitting the existing Department of Economics into two separate departments: a Department of Economics and Econometrics (with the doctoral program and all new hires), and a Department of Economics and Policy Studies (with no participation in the doctoral program and no new hires). The latter department was dissolved in 2010.

Solow’s view?

“Economics, like any discipline, ought to welcome unorthodox ideas, and deal with them intellectually as best it can. To conduct a purge, as you are doing, sounds like a confession of incapacity.”

 

 

This is a 1946 film on democracy and despotism [ht: ra] from the Encyclopedia Britannica, featuring political scientist and propaganda theorist Harold Lasswell. The discussion of respect, power, economic distribution, and freedom of information was clearly made after the victory over fascism and before the Red Scare commenced.

N.b., aside from the body hanging from the noose, everyone in the film is white.

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