War and violence are words that denote extreme forms of social behaviour, even referred to as asocial or antisocial behaviour, in keeping with the immoral and dehumanising acts they accompany. But this was not always the case. War and violence were once seen as far more normal parts of the human conditions than they are … Continue reading Trade makes war: A social theory of violence
The realist school: An emerging paradigm
First published on 14 June 2022. Sometimes, intellectual thought undergoes a rupture that cannot be stopped. It does not matter how much you resist the conceptual tsunami, or how far you run. It will tear down what you know, and force any remaining ideas to cluster around the victorious Noah’s ark of the God-given intellectual … Continue reading The realist school: An emerging paradigm
Chaos: The energy, evolution, and end of capitalism
The economist Joseph Schumpeter termed the key to technological development under capitalism ‘the gales of creative destruction.’ For Schumpeter, the state plays a role in this market dynamism. This is because states compete with each other very much like corporations and classes do. All competition has the potential for conflict; and all conflict, for war … Continue reading Chaos: The energy, evolution, and end of capitalism
Marx’s madness: Why ‘Parasite’ explains everything, basically
The movie Parasite stands in my mind on the same level as Moonlight. It is a distinctive and cutting portrayal of the modern condition of Homo sapiens. It is ‘terrifying.’ And it is, fundamentally, true. Here is why. ‘Parasite’, directed by Bong Joon-ho. In Parasite, the enduring question is: who is the parasite — the … Continue reading Marx’s madness: Why ‘Parasite’ explains everything, basically
17 Points: How to make the world safe for all people
First published in early autumn 2022. In the view that all people depend on peace for their survival and wellbeing, and in the knowledge that peace is at grave risk of breakdown, there are several points that may be well understood by those wise enough to choose peace over war. To that end, the seventeen … Continue reading 17 Points: How to make the world safe for all people
The tyrant and the totality: Which would win? And how can both lose, and freedom reign?
I would like to consider a paradox. If a tyrant goes to war against a totalitarian regime, in order to destroy it and create a new balanced order, which would win: the temporary tyranny, or the semi-permanent totality? Which would endure — cleansing fire, or watery deluge? The fire is the tyrant’s weapon of choice; … Continue reading The tyrant and the totality: Which would win? And how can both lose, and freedom reign?
Everything ends: Explaining the modern world
First published in spring 2020. It’s fashionable to explain today’s world through two prisms: modern politics and modern economics—or the modern state and capitalism. Even the words sound slightly intimidating. So instead of defining them from a dictionary, I would like to give a historical account of how these pillars of the modern world evolved. … Continue reading Everything ends: Explaining the modern world
Technology: The nuclear DNA of social evolution
First published in August 2022. I would like to propose a sociology which mimics both physics and biology in its emphasis on the molecular code of relational life. Everything is connected to everything else in the web of reality, but certain elements ‘code’ for other elements, like how a recipe ‘codes’ for the food that … Continue reading Technology: The nuclear DNA of social evolution
Charles III will destroy the monarchy. Make me king instead.
Hear me out. The Crown has descended for centuries down a certain bloodline. But jus sanguinis, as it stands, has little truth and even less validity. We are only who we say we are, and who others think of us. I am King. Augustus, first citizen of the Senate and the People of Rome, who … Continue reading Charles III will destroy the monarchy. Make me king instead.
Fear: Why everyone downplays the China crisis
It puzzles me that almost every conversation I have with people about China involves people downplaying a number of aspects of the threat this growing great power poses to world peace: 1. China’s power, 2. The possibility or probability of war between America and China, 3. The potential danger of that war, 4. The ability … Continue reading Fear: Why everyone downplays the China crisis