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Home >> History, Ideology & Science

Governance & Conspiracies

Blood Money, Neutrality Myth and the Jews
Ellis Washington, J.D. - 11/18/2013
Switzerland stands accused not only of disgracefully abandoning its policy of neutrality but also of clandestinely helping the Nazis during World War II…: thirty thousand Jewish refugees were turned back at the Swiss borders for certain death, and while 28,000 were admitted, the Swiss Jewish community was taxed for their upkeep.

We the People vs. We the Animals
Stone A. Washington - 9/4/2013
All animals are eqval, bvt some animals are more eqval than others.

Lycurgus and proto-fascism
Ellis Washington, J.D. - 8/21/2013
"When a benevolent mind contemplates the republic of Lycurgus, its admiration is mixed with a degree of horror." ~Thomas Day

Taksim Square and Elsewhere: Analyzing The Nature of Revolutions and Protests
Sufyan bin Uzayr - 7/2/2013
Human history has always been a story of reform on one hand and revolution on the other. No matter what the circumstances or conditions be, time and again, humanity has witnessed its share of uprisings and unrest, which in turn have resulted in a change in the social order, be it for good or for worse.

To End Poverty, Overcome Moral Bankruptcy
John Obiechina - 6/9/2013
Many authors and academics, and even tax attorneys, in development studies have in one way or the other questioned the possibility of ending poverty. This possibility of ending poverty has led to several debates. While these debates continue to make headlines in the media, finding lasting solutions becomes a huge challenge. Therefore in examining the theme of this essay, four questions shall be raised and discussed.

America should back Israel's fight against Hamas, Hezbollah
Nicholas M. Guariglia - 2/28/2013
One of the most unusual aspects of the last ten years has been how Hezbollah camps in Lebanon and Hamas camps in Gaza have remained. You would think any serious effort to democratize Lebanon, or to eradicate terrorism, or to discredit undemocratic Islamist dogma would incorporate some semblance of an attempt to disarm, disband, or dissolve the Iranian-backed jihadist organization.

Crime, Corruption And the Political System
Dr. Gary K. Busch - 11/4/2012
The world’s press is full of the terrible problems which a ‘rogue banking system’ has caused. The actions of the banks in the fall of Lehman Brothers and the corrupt fixing of the LIBOR rate in London by Barclays and other banks has been presented by journalists and analysts as a breakdown of the system. This may well be true but corruption and the flouting of rules is hardly a novel or unique event. Much of all international economic life, under capitalist, socialist, communist or despotic systems which utilises the abstraction of currency to express value and as a means of exchange has always been full of variations on the same theme.

Crime, Corruption And the Political System
Dr. Gary K. Busch - 8/30/2012
The world’s press is full of the terrible problems which a ‘rogue banking system’ has caused. The actions of the banks in the fall of Lehman Brothers and the corrupt fixing of the LIBOR rate in London by Barclays and other banks has been presented by journalists and analysts as a breakdown of the system. This may well be true but corruption and the flouting of rules is hardly a novel or unique event. Much of all international economic life, under capitalist, socialist, communist or despotic systems which utilises the abstraction of currency to express value and as a means of exchange has always been full of variations on the same theme.

Britain- Ecuador stand-off over Assange’s extradition
Dr. Sudhanshu Tripathi - 8/22/2012
The asylum granted by Ecuador to the WikiLeaks founder Mr. Julian Assange may result into an unprecedented stand-off as Britain may resort to a possible military option against Ecuador though with Australian involvement into this controversy, the rising temperatures are likely cool down.

Campuses, Concealed Carry and the Right of Self-Defense
David Huntwork - 6/23/2012
A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity. - Sigmund Freud

Breivik and the Death of Multiculturalism
Abid Mustafa - 4/25/2012
Breivik the right-wing Norwegian extremist who admitted killing 77 people used court appearances to demand a “medal of honour” for killing “traitors” who had facilitated "Islamic colonization”. He also vehemently denounced multiculturalism and said,” We, the Norwegian resistance movement, will not just stand by while we are made a minority in our own country.” Breivik is not alone in his rile against multiculturalism.

The Evolution of Revolution
Fathi El-Shihibi - 5/24/2011
"Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek."

The ICANN- gTLD Myth: It will hurt big trademark owners
Naseem Javed - 5/24/2011
When a good name identity is super glazed with a good trademark protection plan there is no reason why it would be hurt by ICANN's gTLD. For example, great names like Google, Sony, Panasonic, Rolex, Microsoft or CNN are not losing their sleep over GTLD while other mega corporations of the world, with names like United, National, Star, Total, Union, Monster, Metro or General are all scrambling and find refuge in declaring gTLD a new major threat.

This is Your Freedom
Ron Coody - 4/29/2011
For five years I lived in southern Kazakstan, walking some of the same places where Alexander Solzhenitsyn lived during his days of exile in the Soviet Gulag Archipelago. The Soviets had a decisive way of dealing with dissidents, they either killed them or locked them up and threw away the key. Having grown up in the height of the Cold War, I well remember the threat of the Soviet Union. Once I got to Kazakstan in 1993 to work with a non-profit environmental company, I could see the threat had not been imaginary. Soviet era factories and massive housing complexes came equipped with gas ma...

The Qualities of a Good Politician in a Democratic Society
Adewale T Akande - 4/4/2011
The first principles of unalienable rights recognises that everyone is naturaly endowed by their Creator with certain rights that cannot be infringed or given away. Amongst these rights are life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.

From Kwame Nkrumah to Mark Zuckerberg
Gustavo Envela - 3/30/2011
"The United States of America, Under the Measured and Deliberative leadership of President Barack Obama Must Be Clear, Precise, Concise and Consistent in its AFRICAN FOREIGN POLICY, as it is with other regions of the world because the 'African Continent and Africans Matter with the natural resources, but especially with the untapped Human Intellectual Resources which, in short, is PRICELESS'"

The Agent-Principal Problem in Politics
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 8/30/2010
The agent-principal problem is rife in politics. In the narrative that is the modern state, politicians are supposed to generate higher returns to citizens by increasing the value of the state's assets and, therefore, of the state. In the context of politics, assets are both of the economic and of the geopolitical varieties. Politicians who fail to do so, goes the morality play, are booted out mercilessly.

The Hitler File: Prologue
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 7/3/2010
Based on hundreds of newly-discovered documents in archives the world over – now …

Aliens ‘R Us: The Ten Errors of Science Fiction
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 6/27/2010
In all works of science fiction, there are ten hidden assumptions regarding alien races. None of these assumptions is a necessity. None of them makes immanent or inevitable sense. Yet, when we read a sci-fi novel or watch a sci-fi movie we tend to accept all of them as inescapable. They amount to a frame of reference and to a language without which we seem to be unable to relate to all manner of exobiology. We evidently believe that life on Earth is a representative sample and that we can extrapolate its properties and mechanisms of action wide and far across the Universe. The principles of sy...

Swine Flu as a Conspiracy
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 11/12/2009
The Internet has rendered global gossip that in previous epochs would have remained local. It also allowed rumour-mongers to leverage traditional and trusted means of communication - texts and images - to lend credence to the most outlandish claims. Some bloggers and posters have not flinched from doctoring photos and video clips. Still, the most efficient method of disseminating disinformation and tall tales in the wild is via text.

Using Data from Nazi Medical Experiments
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 8/2/2009
"Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither [can] a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."

Political Codependence and Cults of Personality
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 4/28/2009
Political personality cults rely on the codependence of their adherents to foster a bond that is hard to sever between the Leader and his followers. It is, therefore, crucial to understand this psychological attachment disorder.

It is Europe's and Asia's Turn Now
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 10/13/2008
The crisis in the United States has little to do with its real economy. Last quarter, GDP there grew by an impressive 3.3%. IBM's profits are up 22% year on year. American commercial banks, though in need of re-capitalization, are sound. Its investment banks - the sources of the current crisis - are gone. The Dow Jones is unlikely to drop below 7100. The end of the crisis is near. The Treasury will semi-nationalize some banks (take equity positions against an injection of capital), buy some toxic debts and that's it. Within 12 to 18 months, the USA will emerge from this crisis, strengthened and Wall Street will be back at 10,000.

Landlocked Countries and Growth
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 8/3/2008
Macedonia has consistently ranked lowest in Europe in a variety of economic dimensions: from FDI to productivity. Its endemic poverty is the inevitable outcome of multiple factors: its corrupt and incompetent political elite; rent-seeking businessmen; primitive banking system; bankrupt education system, and so on. But, one important factor usually goes unmentioned: Macedonia is landlocked, it lacks access to the sea.

Weapons and waste are on rise as food crisis deepens
Iqbal Latif - 7/16/2008
An estimated $1.2 trillion was spent on weapons in 2006 while aid to agriculture fell by more than half, from $8bn in 1984 to $3.4bn in 2004. The FAO is calling for $1.7bn of emergency funding to tackle the shortage in production The recent crisis is believed to have pushed 100 million people into hunger worldwide. Poorer countries are faced with a 40% increase in their food imports bill this year, and experts say some countries' food bills have doubled in the past year.

Problems before Society and Nation and Obligation of Intelligentsia
Dr. Ravindra Kumar - 6/7/2008
It is natural that problems crop up in day-to-day human dealings. This is not a matter of worry or anxiety. It is, however, necessary that problems must be solved per apt thought. Apt thought is necessary so as to avoid facing these problems soon again. It is expected in human world from a being. These problems again appear soon when a person solves them while keeping selfishness at top and does not prune them with apt thought. They are more serious when they appear a 2nd time. Resultantly, human life paces towards a difficult future. Others also come under its effect. A thing in relation...

What is Overpopulation?
Bernard Gilland - 6/1/2008
Many believe that overpopulation is related to a high population density, but this is obviously false. The Republic of Singapore has 6400 inhabitants per square kilometer, 130 times the world average density, but no one holds that Singapore is overpopulated. The only defensible definition of overpopulation is in relation to a country's ability to feed its inhabitants. If a country's agriculture and fisheries, together with its food and feed imports, are insufficient to provide the population with a satisfactory average diet, the country in question should be considered as overpopulated.

Crisis and Response – Part II
Bertil Lintner - 6/1/2008
Burma has at long last agreed to allow foreign medical workers into the country to help the victims of the devastating cyclone that hit the Irrawaddy Delta region and the main city of Rangoon on 2 May – but with a catch. Setting conditions that fall short of what the international community, including the United Nations and its various agencies, had requested, the ruling military junta insists that the foreign medics and other aid workers come from neighboring countries.

Crisis and Response
Ramesh Thakur - 5/20/2008
The “responsibility to protect,” or R2P, endorsed by world leaders at the United Nations in 2005, is a call to action – not the opening lines of a Socratic dialogue by diplomats. Its origins lie in our collective failure to prevent or halt mass killings and ethnic cleansing in Rwanda, the Balkans and East Timor in the 1990s.

The Threat of Global Food Shortages
Mira Kamdar - 5/11/2008
Last month, the wheat fields in the Indian state of Punjab stretched in amber-tinged waves as far as the eye could see, promising bountiful harvests. Nothing hinted at the grave crisis that has gripped the state, driving farmers to suicide and unemployed youth to the comforts of heroin. Dubbed “the breadbasket of India,” Punjab is in the throws of a serious crisis, one that bodes ill for the future of agriculture at a time when the world faces an acute food crisis.

Global Food Crisis: The Tickling Bomb
Bhuwan Thapaliya - 4/29/2008
The poor world, it is said, is being torn apart by a food crisis. According to "Rising Food Prices: Policy Options and World Bank Response," increases in global wheat prices reached 181 percent over the 36 months leading up to February 2008, and overall global food prices increased by 83 percent.

Dictators and Beauties
Sunita Paul - 4/5/2008
Many of my readers must have read novels on the hidden episodes of Wahabi dictators in Saudi Arabia or those Oil Sheikhs in Arab countries. In at least dozens of stories written about those Arab harems, I was astonished to learn that, beauties in many cases, become so influential that they become much stronger than those wives of the Arab kings and sheikhs as well as they start dictating in state policies of the country. If we haven't yet forgotten Saddam Hussein or his sons. The former dictator and his sons were surrounded by beauties, both locals and 'imported', who were in some cases, much powerful than any of the ministers in the cabinet.

Youth and Nation Building
Dr. Ravindra Kumar - 1/21/2008
A nation will add a feather to its cap and process of its development will continue if its ambitious, agile and strong youths are guided on the right direction.

The Esthetic Prosthetic
Aleksandar Dimishkovski - 8/7/2007
The process of transition created several easily recognizable patterns for the malfunctioning of these countries' official institutions. Although mainly mid-term, these malfunctions did severe damage to the further development of the countries in transition. This is especially true because in most cases these countries' institutions are now a reason for the inefficiency that transmitted even to the private sector, through the unwritten rule of the "path of less resistance".

Exclusionary Ideas of Progress
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 7/25/2007
Communism, Fascism, Nazism, and Religious Fundamentalism are as utopian as the classical Idea of Progress, which is most strongly reified by Western science and liberal democracy. All four illiberal ideologies firmly espouse a linear view of history: Man progresses by accumulating knowledge and wealth and by constructing ever-improving polities. Similarly, the classical, all-encompassing, idea of progress is perceived to be a "Law of Nature" with human jurisprudence and institutions as both its manifestations and descriptions. Thus, all ideas of progress are pseudo-scientific.

Geography For Development
Kamala Sarup - 7/23/2007
Geography is important in determining whether a country has any prospects of becoming developed. Countries that have poor transportation facilities must devote much of the acquired technology to improving it. This was done in the formative years in the U.S. Otherwise, supplies cannot reach producers and products cannot reach customers cheaply enough to be bought by those with modest incomes. Mountainous countries and those without access to navigable rivers and oceans are especially disadvantaged in their quest for wealth, since the capital and technologies to "move mountains" and "tame water" are prohibitively expensive.

Who Rules Over Human Destiny?
Iqbal Latif - 7/16/2007
Alone I stand in the autumn cold
On the tip of Orange Island,
I see a thousand hills crimsoned through
By their serried woods deep-dyed,
And a hundred barges vying
Over crystal blue waters.
Eagles cleave the air,
Fish glide under the shallow water;
Under freezing skies a million creatures contend in freedom.
Brooding over this immensity,
I ask, on this bondless land
Who rules over human destiny?
- Mao Zedong (1925)

If Mao would have asked this question from his grave today the answer he would get be China! Exactly the way he wanted. However the pa...

The Improving State of the World
Iqbal Latif - 5/31/2007
"This optimistic view of the impact of economic growth and technological change on human welfare is an antidote to the prophecies of an imminent age of gloom and doom."
–Robert W. Fogel, Nobel Laureate in Economics

"There is much to commend this book. For those interested in countering the pessimism that infects public media, or who wish to understand the different strategies available to tackle climate change, this is an important work."
–London Book Review

Many people believe that globalization and its key components have made matters worse for humanity and the environment. Special...

Nationalization – A Plan for World Domination
David J. Jonsson - 5/25/2007
"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."
-George Orwell

We are witnessing how nation states are increasing using nationalization as a tool for world control of energy production, energy transportation, basic products and financial assets for control. It appears that the actions of Russia and China combined with pawns the Islamist states and the Leftist governments in Latin America are coordinated in their actions. Initially the nationalizations were occurring within the countries, and recently these actions have extended into the EU and the U.S.

The Public Sector in Economies in Transition
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 1/2/2007
In the previous article ("The Public Sector - An Uncertain Future"), we described the various methods developed in the West to cope with the ever-burgeoning public sector.

Deeply Unequal World
Sam Pizzigati - 12/26/2006
Some people, at year's end, like to spread holiday cheer. The world might do better, suggests a landmark new report from the United Nations University in Helsinki, to start spreading wealth.

Corruption and Transparency - Part II
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 12/20/2006
We can classify corrupt and venal behaviors according to their outcomes:

a. Income Supplement - Corrupt actions whose sole outcome is the supplementing of the income of the provider without affecting the "real world" in any manner.

Corruption and Transparency - Part I
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 12/19/2006
I. The Facts

Just days before a much-awaited donor conference, the influential International Crisis Group (ICG) recommended to place all funds pledged to Macedonia under the oversight of a "corruption advisor" appointed by the European Commission. The donors ignored this and other recommendations. To appease the critics, the affable Attorney General of Macedonia charged a former Minister of Defense with abuse of duty for allegedly having channeled millions of DM to his relatives during the recent civil war. Macedonia has belatedly passed an anti-money laundering law recently - but faile...

Capitalism: One Size Does Not Suit All
Prof. Pranab Bardhan - 12/13/2006
BERKELEY: A little over a decade ago the American model of capitalism was triumphant: The Soviet Union had recently collapsed, recession took the shine off the vaunted Japanese model of the 1980’s, the social-democratic models of northern and western Europe languished in high unemployment and low growth, and the so-called East Asian miracle was soon to be engulfed in the Asian financial crisis. For the many developing and transition economies in search of a model, there was only one prescription: Liberalize and privatize, and copy the Anglo-American institutions of legal, financial and corporate governance.

Battles that changed the course of history - Differing views
Iqbal Latif - 12/5/2006
History is a bounded slave of Eurocentric version of mankind's evolution. Unless proper effort is made to understand historical events in their proper context the gap between civilizations cannot be filed, the bridges can only be made if efforts are made to understand the vents that led to present confrontation between radicals and the moderates of the world.

Anger and Society - Part II
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 11/27/2006
Anger in healthy persons is diminished through action. It is an aversive, unpleasant emotion. It is intended to generate action in order to eradicate this uncomfortable sensation. It is coupled with physiological arousal. But it is not clear whether action diminishes anger or anger is used up in action. Similarly, it is not clear whether the consciousness of anger is dependent on a stream of cognition expressed in words? Do we become angry because we say that we are angry (=we identify the anger and capture it) – or do we say that we are angry because we are angry to start with?

Anger and Society - Part I
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 11/26/2006
Anger is a compounded phenomenon. It has dispositional properties, expressive and motivational components, situational and individual variations, cognitive and excitatory interdependent manifestations and psychophysiological (especially neuroendocrine) aspects. From the psychobiological point of view, it probably had its survival utility in early evolution, but it seems to have lost a lot of it in modern societies. Actually, in most cases it is counterproductive, even dangerous. Dysfunctional anger is known to have pathogenic effects (mostly cardiovascular).

Trends for a Not-so-new Millennium
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 7/14/2006
We construct maps of the world around us, using cognitive models, organizational principles, and narratives that we acquire in the process of socialization. These are augmented by an incessant bombardment of conceptual, ideational, and ideological frameworks emanating from the media, from peers and role models, from authority figures, and from the state. We take our universe for granted, an immutable and inevitable entity. It is anything but. Only change and transformation are guaranteed constants - the rest of it is an elaborate and anxiety-reducing illusion.

The Law of Global Development of Human Civilization - The First Consequence
Oleg Kropivnitskiy - 7/6/2006
A human as an intelligent and organized structure has to be familiar with three especially important Elements of Knowledge. The first one is the Knowledge of oneself, of the human. The Second one is the Knowledge of the immediate surroundings of this structure where it carries out its activity. For the human this constitutes the Knowledge of human civilization. The Third one is the Knowledge of the remote surroundings – the Space and the Universe. We have strong grounds to call these important Elements of Knowledge “The Three Great Elements of Knowledge.” Are we, the people, familiar with them...

Human Rights Hypocrisy?
Bhuwan Thapaliya - 5/26/2006
"We set this nation up to make men free, and we did not confine our conception and purpose to America," proclaimed President Woodrow Wilson in 1919. As the new century rose, the Wilsonian idea that it is America's mission to promote freedom abroad retains a powerful grip in his country. Yet, for the boldness of Mr Wilson's words; American policy on human rights is in mess after the Sep 11.

Why Are Politicians Corrupt?
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 5/22/2006
Most politicians bend the laws of the land and steal money or solicit bribes because they need the funds to support networks of patronage. Others do it in order to reward their nearest and dearest or to maintain a lavish lifestyle when their political lives are over.

Almost Independent: The Conclave of Exclaves
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 1/31/2006
Cabinda is a member of the Hague based UNPO - the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization. Among the dozens of other members are Abkhazia, the Albanians in Macedonia, Bashkortostan, Gaguzia, and Iraqi Kurdistan. Some erstwhile members became independent states - including Estonia, East Timor, Armenia, Georgia, and Latvia. The Cabindese Government in Exile (in charge of a little more than a poorly designed Web site and a few badly trained guerillas) thinks it is a good omen and a portent of things to come.

The Benefits of Oligopolies
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 1/24/2006
The Wall Street Journal has recently published an elegiac list:

"Twenty years ago, cable television was dominated by a patchwork of thousands of tiny, family-operated companies. Today, a pending deal would leave three companies in control of nearly two-thirds of the market. In 1990, three big publishers of college textbooks accounted for 35% of industry sales. Today they have 62% ... Five titans dominate the (defense) industry, and one of them, Northrop Grumman ... made a surprise (successful) $5.9 billion bid for (another) TRW ... In 1996, when Congress deregulated telecommunications, there...

The Delicate Art of Balancing the Budget
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 1/23/2006
Government budgets represent between 25% and 50% of he Gross Domestic Product (GDP), depending on the country. The members of the European Union (Germany, France) and the Scandinavian countries represent the apex of this encroachment upon the national resources. Other countries (Great Britain, to name one) fare better. But even the more developed countries in South East Asia do not clear the 25% hurdle.

The Caveman and the Alien
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 12/19/2005
When Chancellor Kohl's party and Edith Cresson are suspected of gross corruption - these are labelled "aberrations" in an otherwise honest West. When NASA in collaboration with its UK counterpart blow a 130 million US dollars spacecraft to smithereens having confused the metric system for its pound/feet archaic predecessor - people nod their head in disapproval: "accidents happen". When President Clinton appoints his wife to suggest an overhaul of the multi-hundred billion dollars US health system - no one thinks it odd. And when the (talented) son of the police investigated, rumoured to be hy...

Government and Corruption
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 12/17/2005
Izetbegovic, the late nominal president of the nominal Bosnian state, the darling of the gullible western media, denied that he and his cronies and his cronies' cronies stole 40% of all civilian aid targeted at Bosnia - a minor matter of 1 billion US dollars and change, in less than 4 years. The tribes of the Balkans stop bleeding each other to death only when they gang up to bleed another. In this, there are no races and no traces - everyone is equal under the sign of the dollar. Serbs, Bosnians and Croats divided the loot with the loftiest of egalitarian instincts. Honour among thieves trans...

Public Procurement and Very Private Benefits
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 12/12/2005
In every national budget, there is a part called "Public Procurement". This is the portion of the budget allocated to purchasing services and goods for the various ministries, authorities and other arms of the executive branch. It was the famous management consultant, Parkinson, who once wrote that government officials are likely to approve a multi-billion dollar nuclear power plant much more speedily that they are likely to authorize a hundred dollar expenditure on a bicycle parking device. This is because everyone came across 100 dollar situations in real life - but precious few had the fortune to expend with billions of USD.

The Law of global development of human civilization
Oleg Kropivnitskiy - 12/2/2005
Following the introduction of the title of this article to the reader, I would like to give the explanations to the first and most probably expected question of the reader – What do you mean by “New Vision”? So, let us give a short explanation with regard to the content and sense of the idea discussed by this article. The new vision of history of our civilization consists in abandoning the most widely known model of human civilization development and adoption of a new classification: Firstly – there was no primitive communal system, slave-owning system, feudal system, capitalism, and socialism...

Anarchy as an Organizing Principle
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 11/6/2005
The recent spate of accounting fraud scandals signals the end of an era. Disillusionment and disenchantment with American capitalism may yet lead to a tectonic ideological shift from laissez faire and self regulation to state intervention and regulation. This would be the reversal of a trend dating back to Thatcher in Britain and Reagan in the USA. It would also cast some fundamental - and way more ancient - tenets of free-marketry in grave doubt.

The Green-Eyed Capitalist
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 10/31/2005
Conservative sociologists self-servingly marvel at the peaceful proximity of abject poverty and ostentatious affluence in American - or, for that matter, Western - cities. Devastating riots do erupt, but these are reactions either to perceived social injustice (Los Angeles 1965) or to political oppression (Paris 1968). The French Revolution may have been the last time the urban sans-culotte raised a fuss against the economically enfranchised.

The Varieties of Corruption
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 10/28/2005
To do the fashionable thing and to hold the moral high ground is rare. Yet, denouncing corruption and fighting it satisfies both conditions. Yet, corruption is not a monolithic practice. Nor are its outcomes universally deplorable or damaging. One would do best to adopt a utilitarian approach to it. The advent of moral relativism has taught us that "right" and "wrong" are flexible, context dependent and culture-sensitive yardsticks. What amounts to venality in one culture is considered no more than gregariousness or hospitality in another.

The Pettifogger Procurators
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 7/24/2005
Four years ago, the most unusual event has gone unnoticed in the international press. A former minister of finance has accused the more prominent members of the diplomatic corps in his country of corruption. He insisted that these paragons of indignant righteousness and hectoring morality have tried to blackmail him into paying them hefty commissions from money allotted to exigent humanitarian aid. This was immediately and from afar - and, therefore, without proper investigation - denied by their superiors in no uncertain terms.

Entertaining the Masses in Transition
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 6/30/2005
A June 2005 IREX report, quoted by the Southeast Europe Times (SE Times), analyzes the media in countries in transition from Communism by measuring parameters like free speech, professional standards of quality, plurality of news sources, business sustainability and supporting institutions. It concludes that "most transition countries in Southeast Europe have made progress in the development of professional independent media". The Media Sustainability Index (MSI) for 2004 begs to differ: "...(F)ully sustainable media have yet to be achieved in any of the countries.

Narcissists in Positions of Authority
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 6/26/2005
"He knows not how to rule a kingdom, that cannot manage a province; nor can he wield a province, that cannot order a city; nor he order a city, that knows not how to regulate a village; nor he a village, that cannot guide a family; nor can that man govern well a family that knows not how to govern himself; neither can any govern himself unless his reason be lord, will and appetite her vassals; nor can reason rule unless herself be ruled by God, and be obedient to Him."
- Hugo Grotius

What Makes a Leader?
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 6/26/2005
How does a leader become a leader?

In this article, we are not interested in the historical process but in the answer to the twin questions: what qualifies one to be a leader and why do people elect someone specific to be a leader.

The immediately evident response would be that the leader addresses or is judged by his voters to be capable of addressing their needs. These could be economic needs, psychological needs, or moral needs. In all these cases, if left unfulfilled, these unrequited needs are judged to be capable of jeopardizing "acceptable (modes of) existence". Except in ...

Economic Management in a State of War
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 5/31/2005
Countries with a non-convertible currency and a developing economy more and more often face low intensity and prolonged guerilla warfare which leads to a gradually worsening economic situation.

Classification of Cultures
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 5/18/2005
Culture is a hot topic. Scholars (Fukoyama, Huntington, to mention but two) disagree about whether this is the end of history or the beginning of a particularly nasty chapter of it. What makes cultures tick and why some of them tick discernibly better than others - is the main bone of contention.

Anarchy (IV) - The Public Choice Idea
Angelique van Engelen - 5/11/2005
Governments -even the most progressive ones- often tend to keep reform minded individuals on the sidelines. Yet reformists can rely on staunch scientific backing, which is not necessarily very much in the public's eye.

The Possibility for Anarchy (III): The Libertarian Alternative
Angelique van Engelen - 5/10/2005
In Moscow, cars are driving around with bumper stickers saying "Thou shalt not steal! The government doesn't like competitors". The thought is likely to speak more to Russians than to most others, but around the globe there are multitudes of people who also believe their governments take their possessions unrightfully.

Healthcare Legislation in Countries in Transition
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 5/3/2005
Healthcare legislation in countries in transition should permit a structural reform of the sector, including its partial privatization.(Click here to learn more.) Private health insurance plans - including franchises of overseas insurance plans - should be allowed. Such competition is bound to shake the inefficient and corrupt state Health Fund and reshape it. If a private company wants to fund, say, garcinia cambogia capsules to attract more clients, it will only benefit these nations.

The Possibilities for Anarchy (Part II)
Angelique van Engelen - 4/29/2005
Any chances for a country to be ruled by alternative rule will always be zero because -as many economists, philosophers and scientists show us- the way the various parts reality consist of interrelate is dominated by forces we won't in a billion years have any chance of controling. An anarchist with aspirations to help build organizational structures not based on governing from above's best bet is to get a clear picture of those areas of science that are leading the way in terms of future progress.

The Possibilities for Anarchy (Part I)
Angelique van Engelen - 4/27/2005
When organising a country or a group of people in need of structuring, people tend to automatically sidestep ideologies that do not take authority imposed from above for granted. Anarchists and other proponents of alternative rule almost by definition are seen as destructive elements in a society. Yet old time and modern thinkers on the subject might have some viable and decent ideas for future state organisation.

Elders of Zion and Other Global Domination Theories
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 4/21/2005
I was shown the same book in Yugoslavia, in Macedonia and in Bulgaria - "The World Conspiracy" - a shabby tome written by an ageing "scholar". The main, unabashedly anti-Semitic, hypothesis (presented as undisputed fact) is that the Jews rule the world supreme - always have, probably always will. Lists of prominent Jews in the world of international finance reprinted with lists of influential Jews in the Soviet communist regime. And it all amounts to a well organized secretive machinery of illicit power, claims the author with all the persuasion of a paranoid. In here, trash magazines dwell endlessly on these and similar themes.

Narcissistic Leaders
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 4/7/2005
The narcissistic leader is the culmination and reification of his period, culture, and civilization. He is likely to rise to prominence in narcissistic societies.

Democratic Ideal and New Colonialism
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 4/7/2005
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful concerned individuals can precipitate change in the world ... indeed, it is the only thing that ever has"
(Margaret Mead)

"Democracy" is not the rule of the people. It is government by periodically vetted representatives of the people. Democracy is not tantamount to a continuous expression of the popular will as it pertains to a range of issues. Functioning and fair democracy is representative and not participatory. Participatory "people power" is mob rule, not democracy.

The Economics of Conspiracy Theories
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 3/20/2005
Barry Chamish is convinced that Shimon Peres, Israel's wily old statesman, ordered the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, back in 1995, in collaboration with the French. He points to apparent tampering with evidence. The blood-stained song sheet in Mr. Rabin's pocket lost its bullet hole between the night of the murder and the present. The murderer, Yigal Amir, should have been immediately recognized by Rabin's bodyguards. He has publicly attacked his query before. Israel's fierce and fearsome internal security service, the Shabak, had moles and agents provocateurs among the plotters. Chamish pub...

Herzl's Butlers: Battle of Nationalists and Internationalists
Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. - 3/8/2005
James Cook misled the British government back home by neglecting to report about the aborigines he spotted on the beaches of New Holland. This convenient omission allowed him to claim the territory for the crown. In the subsequent waves of colonization, the aborigines perished. Modern Australia stands awash in their blood, constructed on their graves, thriving on their confiscated lands. The belated efforts to redress these wrongs meet with hostility and the atavistic fears of the dispossessor.

Community Policing and Wealth Building
John Mangun - 3/1/2005
I am a product of the First World. By education and experience, I exemplify all that the First World created in the last half century. And I am its prodigal son who gladly left to spend that inheritance somewhere else. I am a citizen of the Third World. For nearly half my life as its adopted child and as both an observer and active participant, countries like the Bahamas, Fiji, Morocco, the Philippines are my home.



  



  

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