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Še enkrat poudarjamo: absurdno poigravanje z mislijo, da je bil Balantič, da so bili številni drugi uporniki zoper revolucijo sokrivi in celo sostorilci zlasti nemškega kulturnega pogroma nad Slovenci, ki se je med drugim odrazil v barbarskem uničenju velikanskega števila knjig, nima nič opraviti z razmerami na Slovenskem med drugo svetovno vojno, pač pa služi samo podaljševanju neke, za razmeroma ozek krog rentnikov zelo donosne iluzije.

France Balantič sodi v javni spomin slovenskega naroda – Skupina podpisnikov

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Po ocenah strokovnjakov je bilo pobitih nekaj sto tisoč ljudi, ki so bili krivi le tega, da so bili ideološki in vojaško nasprotni komunizmu in njegovi revoluciji. Regularna okupirana država se je borila proti boljševiški revoluciji in ostalim, ki so čakali, da bodo to državo lahko dokončno uničili (ustaši, balisti, separatisti in vsi nasprotniki Kraljevine).

Poslednji dom sinov Črne gore – Uroš Šušterič, Časnik

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Skratka, Resolucija 1096 je dve desetletji po sprejemu nujno branje za vsakdanjo slovensko rabo. Svet Evrope nam ne ukazuje, z resolucijo le prijazno svetuje, kaj nam je treba narediti, da bi se skobacali iz teh smrdljivih cunj preteklosti. Tega v dveh desetletjih nismo uspeli in vse bolj se zdi, da tudi prihodnjih dvajset let ne bo dovolj.

Lustracija ob predpostavki – Miro Petek, Slomedia.it

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Dokler bomo imeli tako politiko, v najširšem smislu, vključno s tisto v pravu, nimamo pogojev za ustvarjanje pravne države. Dokler bomo imeli to isto politiko, vključno s tisto v gospodarstvu, ni nikakršnih obetov za bolj konkurenčno ekonomijo, s katero lahko preživimo v globalni tekmi. Dokler bomo imeli tako politiko v najširšem možnem smislu bo ta država umirala na obroke in večina bo živela slabše. 

Dovolj je bilo – Matej Avbelj, IUS-INFO

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Koalicija Združena levica je v nedavni javnomnenjski anketi, skupaj s SDS, dosegla prvo mesto na lestvici podpore slovenske javnosti. To je bil zagotovo velik uspeh za koalicijo, ki združuje politično levico, a tudi trenutek za premislek in zaskrbljenost tistih sil, ki se zavzemajo za demokratični razvoj države. Luka Mesec in njegovi namreč žalujejo za propadlo Jugoslavijo, poveličujejo njene simbole in domnevne vrednote, hvalijo Tita, socializem in se zavzemajo za obnovitev močne države. Vanjo naj bi se vrnili Slovenci, saj bi po zatrjevanju Združene levice samo močna država lahko odpravila slovenske težave in z vrednotami ter simboli iz preteklosti upravljala z državljani in njihovim življenjem.

V Sloveniji skrajna levica za izhod iz težav ponuja socializem – Marijan Drobež, Novi glas

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To figure out whether a policy is good or bad, you have to first figure out what effects it would have. And while ideologues like to treat this as obvious, it rarely is.

Consider the minimum wage, one of the topics covered in the survey Roberts cites. Much of the debate over the minimum wage focuses on the empirical question of how a higher minimum wage would affect low-wage workers. Some economists believe a higher minimum wage will eliminate low-wage jobs; others believe this effect is negligible.

And crucially, this depends on the details. It’s plausible that today’s relatively low federal minimum wage costs few jobs, and that higher minimum wages in wealthy urban areas won’t cause much unemployment. But in areas where wages are lower, minimum wages can cause a lot of harm.

Sorry, liberals, liking free markets doesn’t make someone a jerk – Timothy B. Lee, Vox

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Conservatives, for their part, wanted to know why we are now expected to accept, if not celebrate, those who choose their own gender identities, in defiance of hard chromosomal and anatomical facts, but are forbidden from extending an equally tolerant welcome to those who choose their own racial identities. After all, liberals tend to be the ones who insist that race is a “social construction”. So why not roll out the red carpet for Ms Dolezal?

Rachel Dolezal and race: Blurred lines – The Economist

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The current definitions advanced by social liberalism do not make individual autonomy the measure ofall things; they do not simply instantiate a will to power or self-fulfillment. But they do treat adult autonomy as a morally-elevated good, and rate other possible rights and harm claims considerably lower as a consequence. Linker is right that today’s social liberalism does not simply preach an individualism unbound. But it preaches an individualism in which many bonds and rules and constraints are thinned to filaments, and waiting for the knife.

The Liberalism of Adult Autonomy – Ross Douthat, The New York Times

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The concept of “micro-aggression” is just one of many tactics used to stifle differences of opinion by declaring some opinions to be “hate speech,” instead of debating those differences in a marketplace of ideas. To accuse people of aggression for not marching in lockstep with political correctness is to set the stage for justifying real aggression against them.

Micro-totalitarianism – Thomas Sowell, The New American

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Hyperbole is part of politics. But there seems to be a fairly large disconnect between the criticism of Laudato Si (much of it made prior to the release of the actual text) and the encyclical itself. Theactual document is a more measured affair. For one thing, it’s not even really accurate to call it a “climate encyclical.” Most of the document is devoted to other environmental issues (ranging from clean drinking water to biodiversity) or to the proper Christian perspective on the environment generally. Only a small portion of the lengthy encyclical is devoted to climate change per se, and much of what the encyclical does say about climate change is in keeping with the prior statements of John Paul II and Benedict XVI on the issue.

(…)

It’s not progress but “irrational faith in progress” that he opposes; not technology but “blind confidence in technical solutions.” And Francis elsewhere praises specific new technologies that are going to be needed if we are going to reduce carbon emissions without hurting the poor.

Let’s Listen to the Pope on Climate – Josiah Neeley, First Things

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Although Levin acclaims the thinking of the 18th-century Anglo-Irish statesman Burke with fewer reservations than Fisichella approaches his more controversial object of study, both authors believe that their subjects have much to teach the present age. They try to make their ideas relevant to the present, although in the case of the second figure in Levin’s book—Thomas Paine, who was a critic of Burke, an enthusiast for the French Revolution, and an advocate of the “rights of man”—we are given a counterexample to what Levin considers to be sound political and social views.

Inventing the Right – Paul Gottfried, The American Conservative

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“I wouldn’t call myself a conservative, but neither would I own to liberal. I’ll take just plain old “Catholic,” thanks” – writes with the following thought experiment:

Imagine a gay male couple who have been together for 20 years. They live nearby. You know them well, having a friendly non-political neighborly relationship. You borrow the odd egg, watch each other’s pets when somebody is on vacation, maybe chat at the annual 4th of July party. You are an orthodox Christian who runs a bakery business. Now apply the following scenarios:

A) One of the gay guys has a birthday. His partner asks you to bake the cake. Would you?

B) One of the gay guys dies. His partner asks you to bake the cake for the reception after the funeral. Would you?

C) Marriage is suddenly legalized in your state. They marry and ask you to bake the cake. Would you?

Seems to me that if the answer is no, no, and no, then you ought to examine yourself for homophobia.

But if the answer is yes, yes and no – that’s my answer – then you are arguably simply being principled. I can say “yes” to A and B because I can honor their friendship and loyalty to each other, their faithful service to each other over years. However, I say “no” to C because marriage is not an institution that can be defined entirely in terms of affection, loyalty and service. Or even eros or heartfelt private romantic feelings. Marriage includes all those things, but it exists is a social institution because the fertility of male and female potentially creates uniquely public consequences (children).

The left disputes my premise for saying no to C. Fine, let’s have that debate. People of goodwill can disagree.

But we are not even allowed to have that debate. My side’s case is dismissed by the liberal elite because they think people like me are haters.

Given that I want to say yes to situations A and B, I think it’s demonstrable that I’m not a hater or homophobe. I am not frightened of gay people and I do not hate them. I just do not think that what they are doing is marriage, and I think calling what they’re doing “marriage” will obscure what marriage is.

Cake and Cosmology – Rod Dreher, The American Conservative

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The only clear biblical meta-narrative is about male and female. Sex is an area of Jewish law that Jesus explicitly makes stricter. What we now call the “traditional” view of sexuality was a then-radical idea separating the early church from Roman culture, and it’s remained basic in every branch of Christianity until very recently. Jettisoning it requires repudiating scripture, history and tradition (…)

I take a different view of what they could have known. But yes, the evidence that homosexuality isn’t chosen — along with basic humanity — should inspire repentance for cruelties visited on gay people by their churches. But at Christianity’s bedrock is the idea that we are all in the grip of an unchosen condition, an “original” problem that our wills alone cannot overcome. So homosexuality’s deep origin is not a trump card against Christian teaching.

Interview With a Christian – Ross Douthat, The New York Times

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I was raised by a lesbian couple and had to build bridges to my estranged father in my late twenties. Much of the connection to my father and the benefits of growing up with him were irreparably lost by the time I was a grown man—but at least, I knew who my father was and where to find him. I could salvage my ancestry.

A new generation of children will not even have that consolation I had. Conceived in loveless fertility clinics, gestated in the wombs of women they will never meet, trafficked from poor biological families with the help of complicit governments, “adopted” through a social services system corrupted by money and political pressure, or torn from their birth parents by family court judges who are desperate to please the gay lobby, the new generation of children will be far worse off than I was.

When the debate over gay marriage has receded, when their gay guardians are dead and buried, when the world has moved on, these children will still never be able to recover their heritage.

After Indiana, Gay-Marriage Supporters Should Look in the Mirror – Robert Oscar Lopez, Ethika Politika

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Ni problem idejna sorodnost nekaterih političnih strank in Cerkve. Taka sorodnost je dobrodošla. Tudi ni problem, če Cerkev kdaj nakaže, katera stranka ji je po krščanskih etičnih merilih in družbenem nauku bližja. Na tem mestu bi celo predlagal, da bi se kdaj kak organ pri SŠK, denimo Komisija za pravičnost in mir, oglasil z (pol)uradno (a nezavezujočo) oceno strankarskih programov jasno in glasno imenovavši stranke – pa naj „cerkvena učiteljica“ Ranka Ivelja še tako zavija z očmi. Bolje jasno povedana beseda nad pultom kot šepetajoča hipnoza volivca pod pultom.
Problem je, ko politično poškoduje eklezialno. Ko politika v cerkveno občestvo vnese svoje kriterije razločevanja, kdo je in kdo ni na pravi poti. Naj ponazorim s svežim primerom dveh duhovniških imen. Revija Reporter, 23. marec 2015: pišoči duhovnik Janez Turinek na strani 55, s strani Boštjana M. Turka komentirani duhovnik Milan Knep na strani 35. Turinekovim antikomunističnim erupcijam je dana cela Reporterjeva plahta, Knepovi dialogi z zakoncema Hribar so hudo okrcani. Turinek lahko zapiše, kar se mu zljubi, za Knepa je med vrsticami sugerirano, da ni primeren za odgovornega za katehezo v ljubljanski nadškofiji. Uredniško sporočilo revije je moč dešifrirati takole: militantni duhovniki (t,j, katoličani) à la Janez Turinek so okej, mostograditeljski duhovniki (t.j. katoličani) à la Milan Knep niso okej!
V času Udbe se je temu reklo diferenciacija klera (prim. isti Reporter, str. 19). Cilj diferenciacije? Nič drugega kot nadzor politike nad religijo.
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Here’s the thing: Having been advertised to our whole lives, we millennials have highly sensitive BS meters, and we’re not easily impressed with consumerism or performances.

In fact, I would argue that church-as-performance is just one more thing driving us away from the church, and evangelicalism in particular.

Many of us, myself included, are finding ourselves increasingly drawn to high church traditions Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, the Episcopal Church, etc. precisely because the ancient forms of liturgy seem so unpretentious, so unconcerned with being “cool,” and we find that refreshingly authentic.

What millennials really want from the church is not a change in style but a change in substance.

We want an end to the culture wars. We want a truce between science and faith. We want to be known for what we stand for, not what we are against.

We want to ask questions that don’t have predetermined answers.

We want churches that emphasize an allegiance to the kingdom of God over an allegiance to a single political party or a single nation.

Why Millenials are Leaving the Church – Rachel Held Evans, CNN blogs

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Nemtsov had been preparing for an anti-Kremlin march scheduled for this Sunday. Hours before he was killed, he did a radio interview urging people to attend the march, and connecting the country’s economic woes to Putin’s policy in Ukraine. “The most important reason for the crisis is aggression, which led to sanctions and, in turn, isolation,” he said. Nemtsov understood that he, along with everyone else involved in anti-Putin politics, was being pushed to the fringes, having less of a voice and a foothold in Russian society than ever before. “Three years ago, we were an opposition. Now we are no more than dissidents,” he told the Financial Times earlier this week.

Then why was he killed? Without knowing who gave the orders, it’s possible to understand that the current political environment allowed for this to happen.

Assassination in Moscow – Joshua Jaffa, The New Yorker

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What must one take for granted in order for same-sex marriage to be intelligible? (This is not a question about the motives or beliefs—which can seem quite humane—of those who support same-sex marriage.) It is commonly argued that marriage is no longer principally about the procreation and the rearing of children but that it centers instead on the companionship of the couple and the building of a household. The courts have repeatedly accepted this reasoning. And yet, if same-sex marriage is to be truly equal to natural marriage in the eyes of society and the law, then all the rights and privileges of marriage—including those involving the procreation and rearing of children—must in principle belong to both kinds of marriage, irrespective of the motives impelling a couple toward marriage or whether, once married, they exercise these rights and privileges.

With same-sex couples this can be achieved only by technological means. And so the case for companionate marriage has been supplemented again and again by the argument that we must endorse reproductive technologies that eliminate any relevant difference between a male–female couple and a same-sex couple. This elevates these technologies from a remedy for infertility, what they principally have been, to a normative form of reproduction equivalent and perhaps even superior to natural procreation. But if there is no meaningful difference between a male–female couple conceiving a child naturally and same-sex couples conceiving children through surrogates and various technological means, then it follows that nothing of ontological significance attaches to natural motherhood and fatherhood or to having a father and a mother. These roles and relations are not fundamentally natural phenomena integral to human identity and social welfare but are mere accidents of biology overlaid with social conventions that can be replaced by functionally equivalent roles without loss. The implications are enormousexistential changes to the relation between kinship and personal identity, legal redefinitions of the relation between natural kinship and parental rights, and practical, biotechnical innovations that are only beginning to emerge into view and will be defended as necessary for a liberal society.

(…)

Whether this is the logical outworking of the metaphysical and anthropological premises of liberalism or a radically new thing (…), it marks a point of no return in American public philosophy. And it effectively brings the civic project of American Christianity to an end.

The Civil Project of American Christianity – Micheal Hanby, First Things

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Everybody who is on the Internet is subject to insult, trolling, hating and cruelty. Most of these online assaults are dominance plays. They are attempts by the insulter to assert his or her own superior status through displays of gratuitous cruelty toward a target.

(…)

Clearly, the best way to respond is to step out of the game.

(…)

Historically, we reserve special admiration for those who can quiet the self even in the heat of conflict. Abraham Lincoln was caught in the middle of a horrific civil war. It would have been natural for him to live with his instincts aflame — filled with indignation toward those who started the war, enmity toward those who killed his men and who would end up killing him. But his second inaugural is a masterpiece of rising above the natural urge toward animosity and instead adopting an elevated stance.

Conflict and Ego – David Brooks, The New York Times

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Tehnologija nam je omogočila, da stojimo sredi dvorane zrcal in povsod vidimo samo sebe. V resnici pa nas internetni algoritmi delajo osamljene in nevarne, ker večajo naš narcisizem s tem, da odstranijo ves svet, ki ni kot mi. Okrepijo lastnosti, ki jih imamo. In ker se v osami in anonimnosti interneta prej pokažejo slabe lastnosti, okrepijo njih.

Drugačno mnenje je šok. V svetu, ki je ves kot jaz, nenadoma zagledamo košček nejaza in srd je strahoten, treba ga je odstraniti, takoj! Grožnje in trolanje postajajo norma. Sodobna komunikacija ni več pogovor, marveč je postala eksorcizem.

Dvorana zrcal – Miha Mazzini, Siol.net

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There’s much to the view of Punxsutawney as purgatory: Connors goes to his own version of hell, but since he’s not evil it turns out to be purgatory, from which he is released by shedding his selfishness and committing to acts of love.

(…)

Ultimately, the story is one of redemption, so it should surprise no one that it speaks to those in search of the same. But there is also a secular, even conservative, point to be made here. Connors’s metamorphosis contradicts almost everything postmodernity teaches. He doesn’t find paradise or liberation by becoming more “authentic,” by acting on his whims and urges and listening to his inner voices. That behavior is soul-killing. He does exactly the opposite: He learns to appreciate the crowd, the community, even the bourgeois hicks and their values. He determines to make himself better by reading poetry and the classics and by learning to sculpt ice and make music, and most of all by shedding his ironic detachment from the world.

A Movie for All Time. Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow, Growdhog Day Scores – Jonah Goldberg, National Review

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For conservatism is about national identity. It is only in the context of a first-person plural that the questions – economic questions included – make sense, or open themselves to democratic argument.

Such was the idea that Edmund Burke tried to spell out 200 years ago. (…) Political wisdom, Burke argued, is not contained in a single head. It does not reside in the plans and schemes of the political class, and can never be reduced to a system. It resides in the social organism as a whole, in the myriad small compromises, in the local negotiations and trusts, through which people adjust to the presence of their neighbours and co-operate in safeguarding what they share. People must be free to associate, to form “little platoons”, to dispose of their labour, their property and their affections, according to their own desires and needs.

But no freedom is absolute, and all must be qualified for the common good. Until subject to a rule of law, freedom is merely “the dust and powder of individuality”. But a rule of law requires a shared allegiance, by which people entrust their collective destiny to sovereign institutions that can speak and decide in their name. This shared allegiance is not, as Rousseau and others argued, a contract among the living. It is a partnership between the living, the unborn and the dead

(…)

In other matters, too, it is not the economic cost that concerns the conservative voter but the nation and our attachment to it. Not understanding this, the government has embarked on a politically disastrous environmental programme. For two centuries the English countryside has been an icon of national identity and the loved reminder of our island home. Yet the government is bent on littering the hills with wind turbines and the valleys with high speed railways. Conservative voters tend to believe that the “climate change” agenda has been foisted upon us by an unaccountable lobby of politicised intellectuals. But the government has yet to agree with them, and meanwhile is prepared to sacrifice the landscape if that helps to keep the lobbyists quiet.

Identity, family, marriage: our core conservative values have been betrayed – Roger Scruton, The Guardian

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I write because I am one of many children with gay parents who believe we should protect marriage. I believe you were right when, during the Proposition 8 deliberations, you said “the voice of those children [of same-sex parents] is important.” I’d like to explain why I think redefining marriage would actually serve to strip these children of their most fundamental rights.

(…)

The definition of marriage should have nothing to do with lessening emotional suffering within the homosexual community. If the Supreme Court were able to make rulings to affect feelings, racism would have ended fifty years ago. Nor is this issue primarily about the florist, the baker, or the candlestick-maker, though the very real impact on those private citizens is well-publicized. The Supreme Court has no business involving itself in romance or interpersonal relationships. I hope very much that your ruling in June will be devoid of any such consideration.

Dear Justice Kennedy: An Open Letter from a Child of a Loving Gay Parent – Katy Faust, Public Discourse

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Right after the French Revolution, France abrogated its old laws making blasphemy a crime—and so Charlie Hebdo’s blasphemous depictions of Muhammad are not a crime. At the same time, France’s press laws, which date to the late nineteenth century, make it a crime to “provoke discrimination, hatred, or violence toward a person or group of persons because of their origin or belonging to a particular ethnicity, nation, race, or religion.” In other words, you can ridicule the prophet, but you cannot incite hatred toward his followers.

(…)

This complex distinction reflects modern France’s anti-clerical roots: individuals are protected, but churches and their doctrines are not. There was a powerful desire among the French Republicans to destroy the hegemony of the Catholic Church after the Republic was definitively reëstablished in 1871. This desire did not, however, extend to the creation of something akin to a First Amendment in France. Freedom of expression is mentioned prominently in the Rights of Man, but in practice it is far more restricted than in the U.S., and contains many confusing exceptions.

(…)

These kinds of exceptions, selective restrictions, and ambiguities in France’s freedom-of-expression laws have left the country vulnerable to charges of political favoritism. France might consider either a broader conception of free speech—the notion that the answer to bad speech is more speech—or doing a better job of clarifying what is allowed, and why. That it does not relates, once more, to France’s anti-clerical roots.

Why French Law Treats Dieudonné and Charlie Hebdo Differently – Alexander Stille, The New Yorker

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Last Thursday, the day after the massacre at Charlie Hebdo and the day before the killings at a kosher supermarket, teachers in many suburban classrooms were unable to impose a moment of silence in tribute to the dead. They had insulted the Prophet, the kids said, and the Gauls are not our ancestors—to parody the famous slogan “nos ancêtres les Gaulois” which has traditionally guided the teaching of history in the French education system.

When the slogan, “Not in my name!”, appeared in Britain in May 2013 in protest against the attempted decapitation of the soldier Lee Rigby  in full view of passersby, there was criticism in France: Muslims should not appropriate the phrase. Why? Because they are French—religion should not become an identifying label.

All European countries, whatever their approach to immigration, are confronted today with the intricacies of multi-culturalism and the rise of populism. All European countries have to face the threat of al Qaeda and IS converting desperate youths to their cause, training them in Yemen or in Syria, before some of them go back home and vanish in to the depths of our free societies. There is no easy solution to this new phase of terrorist strategies against our democracies.

Charlie Hebdo: the emotional hangover begins for France – Christine Ockrent, Prospect Magazine

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There are also the religious traditions, ones that meld with awe and wonder to make the holiday both beautiful and holy. Advent, brimming over with both theology and beauty, helps us refocus on the meaning beyond the temporal. It takes the material and makes it transcendent. It turns the simple—candles, words, songs, prayers—into timeless moments. Christmas hymns, sweet and haunting, transform our normal cadences of worship into something new, yet incredibly old: they transform our patterns of praise into timely yet timeless reverence. These are the most important traditions of the Christmas season.

Considering Tradition – Gracy Olmstead, The American Conservative

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Država za normalno delovanje potrebuje sposobne in profesionalne uradnike ter državnike. Pri nas se zdi, da prevladujejo apartčiki, birokrati in ne ravno bleščeči politiki.

Aparatčik se odlikuje po preprosti veri in zvestobi sistemu. To je vera, ki najbolje uspeva v odsotnosti razsodnosti in razuma: res je tisto, kar reče šef, toliko bolj, če enako govori tudi Šef. Šef z veliko in oni z malo začetnico seveda dobro vesta, da zvestoba ni zastonj, zato poskrbita za svojega vernika. Državni aparat v socializmu je deloval po tem načelu in glede na slovenski model demokratizacije (smo za spremembo, ampak tako, da se razen imena ne bo nič spremenilo) ne more presenečati, da javni sektor povečini še vedno deluje po tem načelu.

Lubi Slouenci – Peter Lah, Planet Siol

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Vse skupaj je tako absurdno, da nam kot argumente nasprotniki privatizacije navajajo že to, da se oni slabo počutijo, ker na Brniku zdaj pristanejo na nemškem letališču, kot je pred dnevi potožila Violeta Tomič. Pa čakajte malo, bi mar morali sodržavljani gospe plačati letališče, da bo njej prihranjen nek iracionalen občutek?! A takšna je ta družba enakih in enakopravnih, da so preference tistih pri koritu vsiljene vsem? No, saj v resnici to ne preseneča – gre za sestavni del družbenopolitičnega sistema, ki ga gospa zagovarja. Tudi njen strankarski kolega Luka Mesec razkriva podobne tendence, ko vzklika, da je državno lastništvo v podjetjih še zadnji vzvod [centralnoplanske politike], ki ga imajo. In odgovarjam mu: saj! Natanko zato je privatizacija nujna.

Za boljše leto 2015 – Rok Novak, Finance

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The depravity and barbarism of a movement such as the Islamic State can obscure the disturbing reality: namely, that the politicisation of culture, and its intolerant consequences, is gaining strength across the world. It has certainly contributed to the hardening of the rivalry between the West and Russia.

(…)

The problem with international cultural crusades is not the actual values – many of the sentiments promoted by Western institutions are worthy and enlightened ones. No, the problem is that such crusades assume that Western states possess the moral authority to question, undermine and change the laws and values of communities throughout the world. When diplomacy and geopolitics become entwined with the attempt to affirm the moral superiority of a way of life, the outcome is always unpredictable.

The real danger with the globalisation of the Culture Wars is that it threatens to confuse diplomatic problems with existential questions that touch on a people’s way of life.

The Year the Culture Wars Went Global – Frank Furedi, Spiked

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Nobene težave nimam z uvrščanjem ljudi na levo, na desno in na sredino. Nekateri so konservativni, drugi progresivni, nekateri so etatisti, drugi liberalci. Razlike morajo biti, razlike so dobre, razlike delajo polemike zanimive, v polemikah se brusijo ideje.

Ne sprejemam pa ločevanja duhov, tega, da med nami gradijo čedalje višji zid. Za ta zid si želim, da leta 2015 pade. To ni tisti naš domači berlinski zid iz leta 1945, o katerem prava desnica trdi, da ga vzdržuje udbomafija. To je zid, ki ga gradijo skupaj in ki preprečuje, da bi se razumno pogovarjali o tem, kako našo državo spet spraviti v gibanje.

Ločitev duhov 2015? Ne, hvala – Žiga Turk, Planet Siol

Tedenski izbor

FolioCarols

Če nič od tega ne bo razkritega, pričakujemo vsaj en pošten medijski umor Bojana Petana. Saj veste, Dnevnik je v tej panogi v samem svetovnem vrhu. Dajte jim Dalajlamo pa kak teden dni časa in iz njega bodo naredili mešanico Al Capona, Radovana Karadžića ter Bernarda Madoffa. Njihova prepričljivost, angažiranost in posvečenost medijskim umorom je tako iskrena in silna, da jim je za to res potrebno dati posebno priznanje. Nobena novica za Dnevnik ni tako pozitivna, da iz nje ne bi mogli narediti negativnega spina in nobena informacija ni tako kredibilna, da je ne bi mogli popolnoma relativizirati. Zato vas, sužnje Petana, najlepše prosim, da raztrgate svoje okove in temu trpečemu narodu omogočite vsaj en pošten (čeprav ojdipovski) resničnostni šov letos, in sicer “Dnevnik uniči svojega gospodarja”.

Končno! Vukovićeva in Ranka bosta v Dnevniku raztrgali lastnika Petana! – Kizo, Portal Plus

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By running on a single issue, anticorruption candidates often avoid taking positions on the long list of problems their countries face: stagnant economies, a need for foreign investment, a lackluster civil service. And getting things done often requires knowing how to deal with the people and practices of a corrupt system.

In Slovenia, for instance, Cerar has already faced two serious obstacles in his fight to eliminate corruption. First, many of his nominees to high positions in his new government come from the political establishment he campaigned against. This raises serious doubts about the credibility of Cerar’s electoral promises. Second, a majority of legal institutions continue to do a poor job of upholding the rule of law. The Slovenian judiciary, for example, remains among the least trusted institutions in Slovenia. In a recent high-profile case, the Ljubljana county court sentenced Janez Jansa, the leader of the main opposition party, to two years in prison for accepting bribes in a public procurement case. According to a former justice of the country’s constitutional court, the case was based on insufficient, largely circumstantial evidence. But with the backing of Cerar’s own party, Jansa was also stripped of his seat in parliament, underscoring the political nature of the prosecution and suggesting that Cerar might not be as independent as voters believed him to be.

Put simply, eliminating corruption is difficult, if not nearly impossible—especially from the outside. Yet eastern Europeans hope for deliverance. In Romania, Slovenia, and Ukraine, a silent majority has rejected right-wing nationalists in favor of unassuming, pro-European reformers. Liberal-minded parties throughout eastern Europe should take note and seek renewal themselves, drawing to their ranks antiestablishment outsiders with moral backbone.

 The Eastern European Spring. Voters Tilt Toward Pro-EU, Anti-Corruption Candidates – Mitchell A. Orenstein, Bojan Bugarič, Foreign Affairs

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Tedenski izbor

calvarlist

 

Moraliziranje ima tako na moralizirajočega posameznika nasprotne učinke od pričakovanih. Je kontraproduktivno. Bolj, kot si pripovedujem, kako moralen in integriteten da sem, bolj se bom v to zaciklano prepričal, manj bom tako ravnal. In, ko mi bo okolica nastavila, kot se spodobi, ogledalo, ga bom razbil, ker mi ne bo všeč podoba v njem. Pa čeprav, kot je najbrž vsem jasno, ni in ne more biti krivo ogledalo, ampak le tisti, ki se v njem ogleduje.

Še slabše pa se nam godi, ko moraliziranje z nivoja posameznika potegnemo na raven javnega diskurza in ga celo spremenimo v njegovo paradigmo kot merilo javnega ravnanja. To lahko sproži dve, po svoje znova paradoksalni, reakciji: popolno relativizacijo standardov ravnanja in zavestno, sistematično zavračanje kakršnekoli odgovornosti za svoja javna ravnanja.

Konec moraliziranja – Matej Avbelj, Ius Info

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In tako se je še enkrat izkazalo, da je poglavitni smisel Zavoda Republike Slovenije za zaposlovanje ta, da nudi delovna mesta uradnikom, ki so tam zaposleni. Včasih se vprašam, zakaj skoraj nobeno svetovanje, ukrep, mehanizem, spodbuda ali delavnica ne služi svojemu dejanskemu namenu, marveč samo kot krmilo za občutek, da nekje neka vladna služba nekaj počenja. Pogosto se vprašam, kaj bi veljalo storiti, da bi bilo drugače. Odgovore še čakam.

Kraj, kjer se končajo sanje – Katja Perat, Delo

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In our day, prejudice against gays is just a very faint shadow of what it once was. But the abolition of prejudice against gays does not necessarily mean that same-sex marriage is inevitable or optimal. There are other avenues available, none of which demands immediate, sweeping, transformational legislation or court judgements.

We are in the middle of a fierce battle that is no longer about rights. It is about a single word, “marriage.”

Two men or two women together is, in truth, nothing like a man and a woman creating a life and a family together. Same-sex relationships are certainly very legitimate, rewarding pursuits, leading to happiness for many, but they are wholly different in experience and nature.

Gay and lesbian activists, and more importantly, the progressives urging them on, seek to redefine marriage in order to achieve an ideological agenda that ultimately seeks to undefine families as nothing more than one of an array of equally desirable “social units,” and thus open the door to the increase of government’s role in our lives.

I’m Gay and I Oppose Same-Sex Marriage – Doug Mainwaring, Public Discourse

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In recent years, progressive politics has been known for its pursuit of social change in the moral realm, with LGBTQ causes at the forefront of its crusade. But the poor have been left behind. In ironic fact, progressives have given up equality for the sake of also giving up virtue.

With old-fashioned virtue, there might be a chance at equality. But “progress” has been determined to consist in the final dismantling of all moral structures that once lent backbone to the demands of the virtuous poor. Without meaningful work, there can be no working class. Another way of saying this is that without the kind of work that imparts a working-class identity, the working class can have no class-consciousness.

People need work. The poor—and all of us—are made virtuous in part by the need to labor; to struggle, not with one another in the sense of “class struggle,” but with our bodies and within our souls; to practice the virtues of diligence and self-denial; to have something to show for ourselves. If the “virtuous poor” are virtuous, it is because work has made them so. Take away work, and you take away humanity. That goes for the elite, too.

Are We Proving Marx Right? – The Hipster Conservative

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The current trends in America, Wall Street getting richer, everyone else getting poorer, politicians of both parties feeding brazenly at Wall Street’s trough, the party of the Left in full blown attack gear not on inequality, which it has done nothing to address, but picking at and rubbing raw the scabs of identity politics—this can’t keep going on indefinitely without something really bad happening.

Abandoned by the Left – Scott McConnell, The American Conservative

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Increasingly the divides in American life are not between those who defend equality of opportunity versus those who demand equality of result, as Nisbet argued. Rather they are between whether freedom and voluntary association on a more local level can win out over coercion and bureaucracy at an ever more distant national level. Kunkel’s desire for sustainable production by worker-owned businesses and grassroots democratic decision-making seems to envision a new kind of politics, more local and left-libertarian in nature, that transcends easy categorization. And if there is a genuine mood rising among Americans, particularly the young, toward a return to smallness and democratic self-control throughout American society, then the argument now should revolve around means.

What’s Left After Marx – Matthew Hartwood, The American Conservative

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Conservatives should embrace him /Foucault/ and his work. From a conservative perspective, the great thing about Foucault’s writing is that it is more plastic than Marx, and far less economically subversive. Academics rooted in Foucauldian thought are far more compatible with neoliberalism than the old Marxist academics.

In some ways, Zamora’s book is an effort by some on the left to try to “discipline” Foucault’s flirtation with the right. It will be interesting to see the academic left’s response to the book. But Zamora also reveals why free-marketeers might want to give Foucault another read and not just dismiss him with the “post-modern” epithet.

Why Michel Foucault is the libertarian’s best friend – Daniel W. Dresner, The Washington Post

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Given Chesterton and Burke, there exists a liberalism consistent with right reason and revelation. Extension of economic and political liberalism into all-encompassing worldviews would be an American heresy. But one can take them to be prudent means—of negative liberty for the sake of trade and civic liberties under the rule of law—when rightly ordered toward proper ends known by natural reason and revelation. As Chesterton writes in What I Saw in America: “The unconscious democracy of America is a very fine thing. It is a true and deep and instinctive assumption of the equality of citizens, which even voting and elections have not destroyed.”

Different Kinds of Liberalism – Ryan Schinkel, Ethika Politika

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Havlu je Srednja Evropa je omogočala vizijo neke drugačne, demokratične Češke (oziroma Češkoslovaške). Njegova osebnost je bila zato tudi za druge srednjeevropske države monumentalnega pomena. Na prvi pogled se morda res zdi, da je ideja o Srednji Evropi nek romantičen in nostalgičen pojem, ki se navzven lepo sliši, znotraj pa je votel. Ali kot piše Jančar: »Kaj nas resnično druži v srednjeevropskem prostoru, je precej nedorečeno. Zdaj se naenkrat kaže, da nas je bolj združeval odpor do njegove razdeljenosti kot pa sorodna kulturna vprašanja.« Svobodna demokratična družba, pluralizem, spoštovanje temeljnih človekovih pravic, odprtost in prevzemanje odgovornosti pa vendarle ostajajo nekatere skupne vrednote srednjeevropskega prostora, ki povezujejo, če že ne vladajoče strukture, pa predvsem ljudi, ki živijo na tem prostoru. To pa so prav vrednote, ki jih pooseblja Havlovo življenje.

Srednja Evropa Václava Havla – Jernej Letnar Černič, Razpotja

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Ne glede na dejanske in objektivno ugotovljive razloge za kršitve in napake, ki so se zgodile v sodni kalvariji, znani kot afera Patria, se bo za dobršen del prebivalstva ta zgodba kazala kot zadnja etapa te izključevalne prakse.
Posledice bodo vsaj dvojne.

Prvič, Janševi podporniki bodo za kršitve človekovih pravic v zadevi Patria klicali na odgovornost ne le dejanskih in objektivnih krivcev, temveč celotni slovenski mainstream; to se pravi vse tiste, ki ne spadajo v njihov krog.

Drugič: če živiš v okolju, kjer ti še pri najbolj očitnih in eklatantnih kršitvah tvojih osnovnih pravic na pomoč priskočijo skoraj izključno le podporniki in kjer se politična kritika takoj pretvori v podporo politični izločitvi, potem je logično, da lahko računaš le na podpornike. In če lahko računaš le na podpornike in če od tistih, ki ne spadajo mednje, ne moreš pričakovati niti osnovne državljanske in človeške empatije, potem je logično, da postane lojalnost glavni, celo edini kriterij selekcije.

Družba, ki se začne organizirati po teh principih – ki so, povejmo jasno, principi klanovstva –, se začenja nevarno oddaljevati od razmer demokratičnega sobivanja.

Kako je Janez Janša postal državni sovražnik številka ena – Luka Lisjak Gabrijelčič, Planet Siol.net

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As these examples of democratic regression into various forms of ‘illiberal democracy’ in Central and Eastern Europe show, democratic consolidation is still far from complete. The most disturbing detail is the vulnerability of ‘consolidated democracies’ such as Hungary or Slovenia to ‘democratic regression’, which reminds us that democracies are inherently unable of being ‘definitely established’. While significant progress in the development of ‘electoral democracy’ in the region has been achieved, ‘liberal democracy’ still remains fragile and weak. Moreover, the legal institutions of liberal democracy in Central and Eastern European countries significantly differ from those of their Western European counterparts. Behind a façade of harmonised legal rules transposed from various EU legal sources, several cracks have begun to appear, exposing the fragility of constitutional democracy in these countries.

As a consequence, Central and Eastern European countries are once again displaying certain features of “lands in between” which call attention to their constantly precarious and indeterminate location on the political map of Europe. Zwischen-Europa, as some interwar German writers called it, lies in the territory between the West and the Russian East and is said to have been the “unfinished part of Europe” for most of the 20th century. Its political and legal institutions were similarly “caught” in between the democratic West and the authoritarian East.

Academics should be careful not to exaggerate the progress made by Central and Eastern Europe since the fall of the Berlin Wall – Ivan T. Berend, Bojan Bugarič, LSE Blog

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Skeptics have been planning the EU’s funeral for decades, but time and again, the union has refused to die. During the EU’s latest and most profound crisis, national governments once more chose to reaffirm and deepen their commitments. This rapid growth of EU power, however, has given rise to a number of misguided and counterproductive policies that have undercut public support and left the EU in a deep malaise. European citizens today largely ignore the EU’s many achievements or take them for granted, instead equating the organization with economic pain and feckless leadership. The union endures, but it has lost its mojo.

The EU has worn out its default strategy of muddling through crises. Lurching from one calamity to the next has damaged the credibility of Brussels and national governments alike. It is time for a bold and far-reaching agenda. To see a Europe truly reborn and fit for the twenty-first century, EU leaders must reassert with confidence—on the economy, on security, and on democracy—that Europe is stronger when it stands united.

Europe Reborn. How to Save the European Union from Irrelevance – Matthias Matthijs & R. Daniel Kelemen, Foreign Affairs

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Narodno identiteto bomo zgubili zaradi ležernosti, neaktivnosti, ne-ljubezni do domovine, ne pa zato, ker bi v stiski priskočili na pomoč ljudem, ki nas potrebujejo. Najlažje je ljubiti svoje. A Kristus nas poziva, da ljubimo tujce. »Tujec sem bil in ste me sprejeli.« (Mt 25, 35).

Če že ne moremo začeti ljubiti, ker smo to najčistejše čustvo umazali in pocukrali, se sklicujmo vsaj na pravičnost in mir.

Tujec sem bil in me niste sprejeli – Irena Vadnjal, Časnik

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During the Korean War, alarmed by the shocking rapidity of American POWs’ breakdowns and indoctrination by their communist captors, the CIA began investing in mind-control research. In 1953, the CIA established the MK-ULTRA program, whose earliest phase involved hypnosis, electroshock and hallucinogenic drugs. The program evolved into experiments in psychological torture that adapted elements of Soviet and Chinese models, including longtime standing, protracted isolation, sleep deprivation and humiliation. Those lessons soon became an applied “science” in the Cold War.

During the Vietnam War, the CIA developed the Phoenix program, which combined psychological torture with brutal interrogations, human experimentation and extrajudicial executions. In 1963, the CIA produced a manual titled “Kubark Counterintelligence Interrogation” to guide agents in the art of extracting information from “resistant” sources by combining techniques to produce “debility, disorientation and dread.” Like the communists, the CIA largely eschewed tactics that violently target the body in favor of those that target the mind by systematically attacking all human senses in order to produce the desired state of compliance.

(…)

(B)ecause the concept of torture has been so muddled and disputed, I suggest that accountability would be more publicly palatable if we reframed the CIA’s program as one of human experimentation. If we did so, it would be more difficult to laud or excuse perpetrators as “patriots” who “acted in good faith.” Although torture has become a Rorschach test among political elites playing to public opinion on the Sunday morning talk shows, human experimentation has no such community of advocates and apologists.

The CIA Didn’t Just Torture, It Experimented on Human Beings – Lisa Hajjar, The Nation

Tedenski izbor

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Če je pomembno le število znakov, naštempljane ure, potem bodo uredniki hitro ugotovili, da so v idealni deželi: člankov jim še brati ni treba, kaj šele komentirati in se komu zameriti. Tudi novinarji se bodo hitro prilagodili. Kdor odda raziskan in temeljito pripravljen članek, je idiot – mar bi skopiral nekje od nekod, izpolnil normo glede znakov, poštempljal odmerjeno število ur, od tega pol na kavici s predstavnikom lastnika, kjer bi se mu prilizoval.

(…)

Omeniti moram še element novinarskega dela, ki pa je zunaj poklica in del nezavednih družbenih pravil: jamranje, pasivnost, letargija, fatalizem. Tudi če objavite še tako raziskano in šokantno novico, recimo lopovščino kakega politika, bodo ljudje le zavzdihnili “Takle mamo” in to bo to. Politik seveda ne bo odstopil, le zameril bo.

Skratka, javno mnenje, ki bi moralo biti največji zaveznik novinarstva, pri nas ne obstaja.

Obstaja le javno jamranje. To pa se lahko najbolj naslaja ravno pri zgodbah o lačnih čistilkah in tako je krog sklenjen.

Mučno potovanje v nepomembnost – Miha Mazzini, Planet Siol

 

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Mariboru je šlo slabo že takrat, ko se je še zdelo, da gre Sloveniji dobro. Poudarjam: zdelo! Danes je vsakomur jasno, da se kriza v Sloveniji ni začela 15. septembra 2008 z bankrotom Lehman Brothersov. To nas je kvečjemu pahnilo v spiralo, na katero pa že prej nismo bili pripravljeni.

Razlogi za slovensko zavoženost so starejši. Če bi bili pametnejši, bi jih videli v Mariboru. Namesto da bi v njihovih težavah videli resne, splošne, vseslovenske napake – ekonomske, politične, socialne, kulturne napake, celo zmote -, smo videli zanemarljive probleme lokalnih ljudi, ki da se ne znajdejo in pričakujejo pomoč drugih.

Maribor je bil vseh teh dvajset in več let ogledalo Slovenije, ki nam je kazalo prihodnost. Našo skupno prihodnost. Mi pa smo gledali stran.

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Nihče ni v Mariboru videl splošnih slovenskih problemov. Ne ti ne jaz, ne profesorji ne komentatorji in ne politiki – ne Kučan ne Drnovšek, ne vsi tisti vmes med njunimi časi in današnjim Cerarjem.

Maribor je veliki poraz slovenskega ekonomskega in političnega modela. Sram nas je lahko.

Maribor je Slovenija : samo bolj fejst nor – Marko Crnkovič, Primorske novice

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V Sloveniji se je plačna enakost povečala, ugotavlja urad za makroekonomske analize in razvoj. Kot so pojasnili, so se plače nižje izobraženih v krizi najbolj zvišale (nominalno za več kot 16 odstotkov), plače višje izobraženih pa so se znižale.

(…)

Res se je enakost torej povečala, a na žalost tako, da smo vsi revnejši.

Čedalje bolj enaki, čedalje bolj revni – Rok Pikon, Finance

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Zelo nizek obisk /kinodvoran/ po Sloveniji pomeni, da se, ne glede na to, da smo praktično v vseh večjih mestih v zadnjih desetih letih dobili kinosredišča (te imajo Koper, Kranj, Ljubljana, Celje, Novo mesto, Maribor in Murska Sobota), vseeno srečujemo z nekakšno deurbanizacijo mladega resnejšega aktivnega prebivalstva, ki kulturne vsebine preprosto vse manj spremlja na tak način, da se odpravi od doma. (…) Če (in kako) mladi filmske vsebine spremljajo doma, pa je že drugo, morda malce bolj filozofsko vprašanje.

Nadaljnji strahovit padec kinooobiska v letošnjem letu kaže, da je erozija resnejšega filmskega občinstva vse večja in večja in da je ta ostala relativno čvrsta zgolj še v jasno določenih nišah filmske kulture, ki jo recimo v Ljubljani tvorita Kinodvor in Liffe.

V zgolj dvanajstih letih se je Slovenija iz dežele, kjer je film, tudi slovenski (v obdobju 1998–2003), relativno dobro cvetel, spremenila v urbano puščavo iz poapokaliptičnih filmov, kjer se mladi ljudje najraje zadržujejo doma, od koder jih sem ter tja spravijo zgolj še razvpiti filmi. Ti seveda niso sinonim za mestno življenje, kjer naj bi se rojevale družbene pobude in nove ideje.

Slovenija, dežela brez mestnega življenja? – Samo Rugelj, Planet Siol

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Homosexual marriage is primarily a creation of the judiciary, a fact which is especially evident right now as the lower federal courts go about using the United States Supreme Court’s 2013 Windsor decision to nullify the marriage laws of state after state.

In this essay, we deal with the decisions of the Massachusetts Supreme Court in 2003 and a federal district court in California in 2010 holding man-and-woman marriage deficient and, indeed, unconstitutional. But how and on what basis did they do that? There were no written laws, constitutions, or case precedents in either state or federal constitutional law to which to refer. Marriage had existed in the form of a relationship of a man and a woman with a primary purpose of procreation for all human history. Before the homosexual rights movement, no one had ever thought to sue marriage. Marriage was not considered to be a subject for “equal protection” analysis in either state or federal constitutional law. It was not a civil rights issue, much less an “issue.”

The Courts Invent Homosexual Marriage – Erasmus More, The Imaginative Conservative

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The book contains numerous examples to illustrate the deleterious effect boycotts have upon academic freedom. We’re told of authors who refuse to have their books translated into Hebrew, Israeli academics pulled from the editorial boards of journals, PhD students prevented from taking up scholarships, as well as many more mundane examples of academics not being able to speak at conferences or take part in collaborative research projects.

The Boycott-Israel Brigade Undermines the University – Joanna Williams, Spiked

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Pero el problema es que la palabra liberal la quiere todo el mundo. Todos son liberales y conservadores, o socialistas a fuer de liberal. Es una palabra manipulada por todo el mundo. Por eso los que de verdad somos liberales tenemos que tener clara una cosa: si eres liberal tienes que serlo en todas las manifestaciones. La palabra liberalismo no solamente habla de libertades, también de liberación. El liberalismo habla de que el ser humano no puede estar oprimido por los poderes financieros, ni por el poder de los medios de comunicación, ni por el eclesiástico. En este mundo la tendencia a la concentración de poder es tremenda. Este es el problema del liberalismo y tarda uno mucho en entenderlo.

[Težava je, da si besedo liberalizem želijo prisvojiti vsi. Vsi so liberalci in konservativci ali pa so socialisti, ker so liberalci. Gre za besedo, ki jo vsi manipulirajo. Zato nam mora resničnim liberalcem biti jasno nekaj: če si liberalec, moraš biti liberalec v vseh pogledih. Beseda liberalizem ne govori le o svoboščinah, temveč tudi o osvoboditvi. Liberalizem pravi, da človek ne sme biti zatiran niti s strani finančnih moči niti s strani medijskih moči niti strani moči cerkvenih institucij. V našem svetu obstaja grozljiva koncentracija moči. To je problem, s katerim se sooča liberalizem, in zelo zamuja z njegovim dojemanjem.]

Antonio Garrigues Walker: “El auge de Podemos es absoluta y radicalmente lógico y positivo” – Guillermo de Haro & Álvaro Corazón Rural, Jot Down Magazine

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The full horror of the CIA interrogation and detention programmes launched in the wake of the September 11 terror attack was laid bare in the long-awaited Senate report released on Tuesday.

While parts of the programme had been known – and much more will never be revealed – the catalogue of abuse is nightmarish and reads like something invented by the Marquis de Sade or Hieronymous Bosch.

Detainees were forced to stand on broken limbs for hours, kept in complete darkness, deprived of sleep for up to 180 hours, sometimes standing, sometimes with their arms shackled above their heads.

Prisoners were subjected to “rectal feeding” without medical necessity. Rectal exams were conducted with “excessive force”. The report highlights one prisoner later diagnosed with anal fissures, chronic hemorrhoids and “symptomatic rectal prolapse”.

The report mentions mock executions, Russian roulette. US agents threatened to slit the throat of a detainee’s mother, sexually abuse another and threatened prisoners’ children. One prisoner died of hypothermia brought on in part by being forced to sit on a bare concrete floor without pants.

Rectal rehydration and waterboarding: the CIA torture report’s grisliest findings – Dominic Rushe & al, The Guardian

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Torture is absolutely wrong and absolutely useless, and demonstrating the truth of both statements will make clear how completely bankrupt its defenders’ arguments really are. Proving that torture achieves nothing except the cruel degradation of human beings takes away the only argument its defenders have left. It would obviously be better if no one were willing to offer a defense for something as abhorrent as torture, but we know very well that quite a few people are prepared to do that so long as they can dress up what they’re defending in euphemisms and false claims about its efficacy. The point of insisting on torture’s uselessness is to strip away the remaining falsehoods that its defenders use to conceal the ugly reality of what they are defending.

Torture Is Wrong and Useless – Daniel Larison, The American Conservative

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There is, however, another prism through which to examine these grim stories: the use of excessive violence by the state (see article). It, too, has complex origins, but quite a lot of them may be susceptible to reform. In many cases Americans simply do not realise how capricious and violent their law-enforcement system is compared with those of other rich countries. It could be changed in ways that would make America safer, and fairer to both blacks and whites.

Bits of America’s criminal-justice system are exemplary—New York’s cops pioneered data-driven policing, for instance—but overall the country is an outlier for all the wrong reasons. It jails nearly 1% of its adult population, more than five times the rich-country average. A black American man has, by one estimate, a one in three chance of spending time behind bars. Sentences are harsh. Some American states impose life without parole for persistent but non-violent offenders; no other rich nation does. America’s police are motivated to be rapacious: laws allow them to seize assets they merely suspect are linked to a crime and then spend the proceeds on equipment. And, while other nations have focused on community policing, some American police have become paramilitary, equipping themselves with grenade launchers and armoured cars. The number of raids by heavily armed SWAT teams has risen from 3,000 a year in 1980 to 50,000 today, by one estimate.

Above all, American law enforcement is unusually lethal: even the partial numbers show that the police shot and killed at least 458 people last year. By comparison, those in England and Wales shot and killed no one.

America’s Police on Trial – The Economist

 ***

Votre ouvrage, en rendant Foucault compatible avec le néolibéralisme, risque de faire grincer un paquet de dents!

J’espère ! C’est un peu le but du livre. Je voulais clairement rompre avec l’image bien trop consensuelle d’un Foucault en opposition complète avec le néolibéralisme sur la fin de sa vie. De ce point de vue, je pense que les interprétations traditionnelles de ces derniers travaux sont erronées, ou évitent du moins une partie du problème. Il est devenu aujourd’hui une sorte de figure intouchable dans une partie de la gauche radicale. Les critiques à son encontre sont pour le moins timides. Cet aveuglement est d’autant plus étonnant que j’ai moi même été surpris de l’indulgence dont fait part Foucault vis-à-vis du néolibéralisme lorsque je me suis plongé dans les textes. Ce n’est pas uniquement son cours aux Collège France qui pose question (Naissance de la biopolitique) mais de nombreux articles et interviews, qui sont pourtant accessibles. Foucault était très attiré par le libéralisme économique : il voyait dans celui-ci la possibilité d’une forme de gouvernementalité beaucoup moins normative et autoritaire que la gauche socialiste et communiste qu’il trouvait totalement dépassée. Il percevait notamment dans le néolibéralisme une politique « beaucoup moins bureaucratique » et « beaucoup moins disciplinariste » que celle proposée par l’État social d’après guerre. Il semble imaginer un néolibéralisme qui ne projetterait pas ses modèles anthropologiques sur les individus et leur offrirait une autonomie plus grande face à l’État.

Peut-on critiquer Foucault? – Daniel Zamora, Ballast

***

Slovenija je bila že pred letošnjim letom na nehvaležnem prvem mestu držav po številu sodb ESČP na število prebivalstva z ugotovljenim kršitvami Evropske konvencije. Zdi se, da je v iztekajočem se letu svoj položaj le še utrdila. Statistični podatki so več kot alarmantni, zaradi česar zahtevajo skrbno ter resno obravnavo. Dosegli so že takšno stopnjo resnosti, da jih nosilci državnih oblasti ne morejo več kar tako pometati pod preprogo, če jim je seveda kaj mar za izboljšanje stanja na področju varovanja človekovih pravic.

Najprej se bo potrebno vprašati zakaj smo dosegli tolikšno število obsodilnih sodb Evropskega sodišča in zakaj se varovanje človekovih pravic prav nič ne izboljšuje. Več kot očitno je, da težave nastajajo ne le zaradi pomanjkljivega znanja o Evropski konvenciji, ampak morda tudi zaradi premajhnega zavedanja resnosti problema. Odsotnost resnega obravnavanja takšnih sistematičnih in vsesplošnih težav izhaja iz vseh vej oblasti v Sloveniji, pa tudi od organov, ki naj bi delovali na področju varovanja človekovih pravic. Denimo, letno poročilourada Varuhinje človekovih pravic za leto 2013 obravnava le posamezna drevesa – navaja denimo le dve sodbi Evropskega sodišča zoper Slovenijo, ne vidi pa celotnega gozda, torej sistematičnih in vsesplošnih težav slovenske države, prvič, pri uresničevanju Evropske konvencije, in drugič, pri izvrševanju sodb Evropskega sodišča v slovenskem pravnem redu.

Tristo – Jernej Letnar Černič, Ius Info

***

Po raziskavah zgodovinarjev, ki se ukvarjajo z genocidom nad Romi, je bilo med drugo svetovno vojno v Evropi pobitih okrog pol milijona Romov in Sintov. Nekateri raziskovalci to številko sicer močno povečujejo. Romi so bili, tako kot Judje, žrtev genocida, ki so ga izvajali nacisti in ga strokovno imenujemo porrajmos. Heinrich Himmler je namreč sredi novembra 1943 tudi uradno izenačil položaj Romov z žalostno usodo evropskih Judov.
(…)
Omenjene poboje, ki so jih zakrivili pripadniki partizanskega gibanja, moramo prišteti med vojne zločine nad Romi. Resda ni šlo za genocid, saj slovenske partizanske oblasti niso nikoli ukazale njihovega načrtnega ubijanja. Ampak, ali to spremeni dejstvo, da so več kot polovico vsega romskega prebivalstva v t. i. Ljubljanski pokrajini med drugo svetovno vojno pobili pripadniki partizanskega gibanja?

Sprenevedanje po slovensko – Renato Podbersič ml., Časnik

 

***

Most protesters said Thursday morning that they had returned to the camp not to resist the clearance, but to witness what they called the beginning of another era in a long-term democratic movement.

“This is definitely not the end of the movement,” lawmaker Leong told TIME just hours before his arrest. “With this awakening of the Hong Kong people, we have sown the seeds for the next wave of the democratization movement.”

Hong Kong’s Main Democracy Protest Camp Falls With Leading Protest Figures Arrested – Elizabeth Barber, Time

Tedenski izbor

Churchill-reading

 

Yet [Greece’s] recent comeback masks deep structural problems. To tidy its books, Athens levied crippling taxes on the middle class and made sharp cuts to government salaries, pensions, and health-care coverage. While ordinary citizens suffered under the weight of austerity, the government stalled on meaningful reforms: the Greek economy remains one of the least open in Europe and consequently one of the least competitive. It is also one of the most unequal.

Greece has failed to address such problems because the country’s elites have a vested interest in keeping things as they are. Since the early 1990s, a handful of wealthy families — an oligarchy in all but name — has dominated Greek politics. These elites have preserved their positions through control of the media and through old-fashioned favoritism, sharing the spoils of power with the country’s politicians. Greek legislators, in turn, have held on to power by rewarding a small number of professional associations and public-sector unions that support the status quo. Even as European lenders have put the country’s finances under a microscope, this arrangement has held.

The fundamental problem facing Greece is not economic growth but political inequality.

Misrule of the Few: How the Oligarchs Ruined Greece – Pavlos Eleftheriadis, Foreign Affairs

***

I agree entirely with Ryan that libertarianism (“rugged individualism”) is hard to reconcile with Christianity and the history of Christian political thought. His comment, though, highlights two ideas I’m trying to work out within my own thinking on religion and politics.

First, to say that Republicans, especially Christian conservatives, have “given up on America” because they no longer have Tocquevillian ideals is, I think, sort of true — but then, is it not the case that America has given up on itself in that regard? Who really believes in the common good anymore? We have become an atomized nation of individual consumers who believe our preferences must be indulged no matter what. It’s true of the Right as well as the Left. The main reason it’s so hard to talk about the common good is that so few people are willing to recognize an independent authoritative standard for determining that good.

Has the GOP Given Up on America? – Rod Dreher, The American Conservative

 ***

This updated conservative tradition consists of several complementary propositions:

As human beings, our first responsibility lies in stewardship, preserving our common inheritance and protecting that which possesses lasting value. This implies an ability to discriminate between what is permanent and what is transient, between what ought to endure and what is rightly destined for the trash heap. Please note this does not signify opposition to all change—no standing athwart history, yelling Stop—but fostering change that enhances rather than undermines that which qualifies as true.

Conservatives, therefore, are skeptical of anything that smacks of utopianism. They resist seduction by charlatans peddling the latest Big Idea That Explains Everything.

Counterculture Conservatism: the Right Needs Less Ayn Rand, More Flannery O’Connor – Andrew Bacevich, The American Conservative

 ***

Zgodba o vlačenju Anuške Delić po sodišču postaja bizarna in se spreminja v institucionalni spin, ki je mogoč zgolj zaradi tega, ker je to politično mogoče. Da ne bo pomote: Delićeva, ki, kot smo razkrili na našem portalu, pridobiva informacije kar pri Pristopu in z njimi obdeluje bivše Pristopove poslovne stranke, je v primeru desnih ekstremistov naredila tisto, kar bi vsak novinar moral in k čemur je zavezan – objavila je vse zgodbe.

In bodimo iskreni, objavila jih je še z večjim veseljem, ker je šlo za informacije, ki so neposredno škodile volilni mobilizaciji SDS. Problem pa, institucionalno gledano, ni v Delićevi, ampak v viru, ki je informacije s točno določeno agendo (ki je lahko samo politična) odcurljal do Dela.

Ali je Sova ušla izpod kontrole? – Kizo, Portal Plus

***

Potrebujemo iniciativi Reset in Gremo na volitve na steroidih. Takšni, ki se ekipirata skrbneje in dlje časa od izvirnika in ne ponovita začetniških napak Državljanske liste. Potrebujemo kritično maso razumnih ljudi, ki bi skupaj z ranjeno desno-sredinsko opozicijo, brez Desusa, na volitvah lahko dosegli 51 odstotkov  ter izvedli trajne spremembe. Nemogoče? Sploh ne.  Naj brez posebnega vrstnega reda in brez vedenja oseb, ki jih bom namočil, naštejem nekaj posameznikov, ki bi jim kot ekipi zaupal svojo podporo in glas: Romani Jordan, Janezu Šušteršiču, Marjanu Batagelju, Blažu Vodopivcu, Bojanu Travnu, Igorju Mastenu, Žigu Turku in Igorju Akrapoviču Bi jim tudi vi? Ne pravim, da se bo takšna politična opcija pojavila. Pravim le, da bi tudi apatični volivci in volivke prišli na volitve in podprli spremembe, če bi zanje ustrezno ponudbo. In da torej ni res, da je vse izgubljeno!

Reset na steroidih – Tomaž Štih, Reporter

***

The Putin personality cult appears to be rising. Vyacheslav Volodin, first deputy chief of staff to the president, told the conference Wednesday that Western “attacks against Putin are attacks against Russia.”

He went on to say that Russia’s people understand “that if there is no Putin, there is no Russia.” (…)

Mr. Volodin’s remarks spurred political pundit Stanislav Belkovskiy, a Putin critic, to tell the independent Ekho Moskvy radio station: “The search for Russia’s national idea, which began after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, is finally over. Now it is obvious that Russia’s national idea is Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin as an individual.”

It is hard to imagine that identification between state and ruler being made in the U.S. or Western Europe, in private or in public. It is another illustration of how those in power in Russia think differently from their counterparts in the West.

Russia and West Grapple with Alternate Realities – Allan Cullison, The Wall Street Journal

***

The collapse of Ukraine would be a tremendous loss for NATO, the European Union, and the United States. A victorious Russia would become much more influential within the EU and pose a potent threat to the Baltic states with their large ethnic Russian populations. Instead of supporting Ukraine, NATO would have to defend itself on its own soil. This would expose both the EU and the US to the danger they have been so eager to avoid: a direct military confrontation with Russia. The European Union would become even more divided and ungovernable. Why should the US and other NATO nations allow this to happen?

The argument that has prevailed in both Europe and the United States is that Putin is no Hitler; by giving him everything he can reasonably ask for, he can be prevented from resorting to further use of force. In the meantime, the sanctions against Russia—which include, for example, restrictions on business transactions, finance, and trade—will have their effect and in the long run Russia will have to retreat in order to earn some relief from them.

These are false hopes derived from a false argument with no factual evidence to support it. Putin has repeatedly resorted to force and he is liable to do so again unless he faces strong resistance. Even if it is possible that the hypothesis could turn out to be valid, it is extremely irresponsible not to prepare a Plan B.

Wake Up, Europe – George Soros, The New York Review of Books

***

Tisto, kar je bilo včasih samoumevno in potem izgnano iz narodovega spomina, počasi a vztrajno spet dobiva prostor pod soncem. Hvala Bogu, očitno postajamo normalni.

Pred par meseci sem slišal osebno pričevanje nekdanjega partizanskega borca iz manjšega kraja v zamejstvu na Goriškem. Pripovedoval je o svojih izkušnjah v partizanskih vrstah, ko se je kot mobiliziran mladoletnik septembra 1943 udeležil bojev na t. i. goriški fronti. Samo za osvežitev spomina: Partizanske enote na Primorskem so želele sredi septembra 1943 zadržati nemški prodor pred Gorico. Toda bile so nepripravljene in preslabo vodene, tako da so nemški okupatorji, ki so zamenjali Italijane, kmalu krvavo zatrli partizanski odpor ter povzročili velike in nepotrebne žrtve.

No, omenjeni možakar je pripovedoval, kako so se nič kaj junaško skrivali v Trnovskem gozdu, tam pri Rijavcih, ko so pač videli silno nemško premoč. In tam, v skalni votlini, je dvanajst primorskih mož in fantov ždelo nekaj dni. Lačni, žejni, prestrašeni. Na dan vseh svetih, 1. novembra popoldne, je eden izmed njih rekel: »Sedaj so naši domači zbrani na domačem pokopališču na grobovih rajnih in molijo, dajmo tudi mi kaj zmoliti za naše rajne.« Iz žepa je najmlajši med njimi potegnil rožni venec, in vsi, prav vsi, so v en glas molili s priprošnjo k Svetogorski Kraljici za rajne.

Pravica do normalnosti – Renato Podbersič ml, Časnik

***

Treba je začeti znova in projekt narediti na civilizacijski normi, da ima vsak človek pravico do groba, kar izhaja iz pietete in dostojanstva človeka. Obuditi je potrebno sočutje, ki je izraz dobronamernosti človeka in preprečuje zlo, ki ustvarja sovraštvo, da se zadeve ponavljajo. Tu smo na mestu, kjer so se dogajali nasilje in zločini, materam so jemali otroke in ljudi odvažali na morišča v razne jarke in Hude jame. Tu so ljudje umirali in bili tudi ubiti in zakopani. Torej to je kraj, kjer se mora človek zjokati in to dvakrat: prvič zaradi zločinov in drugič zaradi neetičnega odnosa do trupel in neresnega urejanja okolja za prikrivanje resnice.

Nedokončan park, nedokončana demokratična prenova – Franc Zabukošek, Časnik

***

Se torej splača študirati?

Prepričan sem, da ja. Za take razmisleke ni dovolj analizirati, kako je zdaj, ampak se je treba ozreti v prihodnost. Slovenija bo morala doživeti svojo katarzo in prav zato, ker smo tukaj, namenoma nisem omenil možnosti odhoda v tujino. V Sloveniji radi živimo in samo skupaj jo bomo lahko premaknili z mrtve točke. Vseh stvari se preprosto ne da znanstveno dokazati, kaj šele napovedati. V nekatere stvari je treba preprosto verjeti. In glagol »splačati se« nima zgolj finančnega pomena.

Ali se splača študirati? – Jaka Vadnjal, Finance

Tedenski izbor

reading2

 

Mass clientelism, Fukuyama writes, is different from outright corruption. It creates a primitive (but economically highly damaging) form of democratic accountability. Citizens, after all, can say that they’ll only keep casting their ballot for a politician who actually delivers that plum job in Athens.

Fukuyama argues that the real division in Europe is not between a disciplined, hard-working north and a dolce far niente south, or between countries with generous welfare states and those harder on the needy. The real opposition is between what he calls a clientelistic Europe and a nonclientelistic Europe.

Francis Fukuyama’s ‘Political Order and Political Decay’ – Jan-Werner Mueller, The Irish Times

***

Miti so vsegliharska poceni promocija različnih interesnih grupacij, ki se prolongirajo z mediji samo zaradi tega, ker obstoj mitov garantira donos. Če ne bi bilo mita o zlati dobi Janeza Drnovška, bi se slovenska levica referirala zgolj na Tita, kar pa je slaba popotnica za zajemanje sredinskega volilnega telesa. Če ne bi obstajal mit o racionalnosti in progresivnosti levice, bi se levičarji razgalili kot vsebinsko prazni blebetači, požrtni hohštaplerji, homofobi in odurni nacionalisti. Če ne bi bilo mita o reformatorski desnici, bi desnica morala sama reformirati. To so slovenske kosovske bitke.

Trije najbolj odurni miti o slovenski politiki in ekonomiji – Kizo, Portalplus

***

Bergant, Starič, druščina, dobro jutro. Pred dobrim letom je bil vaš kolega na TV Slovenija suspendiran, ker je povedal, da Bratuškova v svojem govoru v Mariboru ni povedala nič. Takrat neke velike zaskrbljenosti glede kratenja novinarske svobode niste pokazali. Je mogoče zdaj, ko je njeno vsebinsko praznost uradno potrdila tudi Evropa, trenutek za katarzo? Boste na odgovornost pozvali odgovorno urednico, ki je odgovorna za tisto? In še pomembneje, boste končno odložili rožnata očala in pogledali svet v njegovih pravih barvah? Je mogoče bruseljska blamaža Bratuškove priložnost, da postanete neodvisna, nepri­stranska in neobrzdana četrta veja oblasti in se resno lotite resnih zgodb?

Levo. Priden. Piškotek – Blaž Vodopivec, Finance

***

Seveda niso vsi novinarji neprofesionalni, manipulativni, kupljeni, pokvarjeni ali preprosto butasti. O številnih bi lahko napisal veliko pohvalnega. Toda večina teh ob vsem skupaj tiho gleda stran in se ne zgane. Čeprav splošno nezaupanje v medije, ki ga opisane slabe prakse povzročajo, najbolj škodi prav tistim, ki odstopajo od povprečja.

(…)
Tako kot niso vsi novinarji slabi, tudi vsi mediji niso enako neprofesionalni ali manipulativni. Nikakor pa zapisano ne velja samo za tiste, ki jim običajno pravimo levičarski ali dominantni mediji. Če uporabim duhovito domislico Blaža Vodopivca, piškotke za novinarje pečejo tako na levici kot na desnici in tudi v zasebnem sektorju. Sam zato za medije in roke, ki jih hranijo, že nekaj časa uporabljam izraz “krotilci javnega mnenja”

Sedem razlogov, zakaj bi morali novinarji razkriti svoje vire – Janez Šušteršič, Planet Siol

***

Ker se torej vračamo tja, od koder smo prišli, pravzaprav z dvojno plebiscitarno večino pobegnili, javna intelektualna vest narekuje, da je nekaj treba storiti. V nasprotju z Lukacsem menim, da alternative niso samomor, dekadenca in revolucija, temveč aktivna, javno-intelektualna državljanska zavzetost za evropsko Slovenijo. Pri čemer se je treba zavedati, da tu ne gre za ad hoc politični, ekonomski ali katerikoli kratkoročni interesni izziv, temveč za jedrno civilizacijsko vprašanje o tem, kakšna družba ali država bomo. Oblikovati je treba široko, vključujočo koalicijo razmišljujočih ljudi, zares vseh, »ki dobro v srcu mislijo«, da bodo s svojim delom in imenom aktivno branili tisti vrednostni civilizacijski minimum, ki nam ga zapoveduje slovenska ustava. Demokratično in pravno, ekonomsko odprto in socialno prijazno slovensko državo, utemeljeno na človekovem dostojanstvu, zasidrano v vsebinskem liberalizmu, ki naj nas popelje v svetovljansko smer zahodnega sveta, ne pa v provincialno samozadostnost semidespotskih režimov na obronku Evrope.

Samomor, dekadenca ali revolucija – Matej Avbelj, Časnik

***

Zakaj imamo torej takšne težave z zavračanjem smejočih županov, ki so v resnici navadni kriminalci? Zakaj vsi po malem goljufamo in utajujemo davke? Zakaj imamo problem s sprejemanjem lastne države in spoštovanjem njenih institucij? Zakaj dvomimo v pravno državo in enakost pred zakonom, zakaj smo prepričani, da sta klientelizem in korupcija osrednja problema naše državljanske eksistence?

Odgovori se skrivajo v intimnem dojemanju države kot slabe, nepravične in nefunkcionalne. Umanjkanje normativne integracije se stopnjuje do tiste skrajnosti, onkraj katere je prostor za vse in kjer je tudi dovoljeno vse. To je tisti pravi Balkan, katerega smo ponotranjili približno tako, kot so naši politični zaporniki in pošteni župani obtoženca Josipa Broza Tita, ki se je v bombaškem procesu leta 1928 drl iz zatožni klopi: »Ne priznajem buržoaski sud, jer se smatram odgovornim samo svojoj komunističkoj partiji!«

Banditi, Balkanci, titoisti – Dejan Steinbuch, Finance

***

Most of Mrs Merkel’s predecessors stood for at least one big, controversial project. Konrad Adenauer after 1949 bound the new republic to the West at the cost of making reunification seem impossible. Willy Brandt recognised East Germany. Helmut Schmidt allowed American Pershing missiles in West Germany to deter a Soviet attack. Helmut Kohl made the Germans give up the D-mark for the euro. Gerhard Schröder liberalised the labour market.

Nobody in Germany today considers Angela Merkel capable of a similar level of leadership. Her power is immense but mainly potential. “She has not tried out how much power she has. For that she would have to dare to do something, to go against polls and the Zeitgeist,” concludes Mr Kurbjuweit. “In a certain way, Merkel is thus a powerless chancellor.” She uses her power to block, not to promote. It is power amassed but unused. If she goes on this way, that will be her main legacy.

Sedating, not leading – The Economist

***

Russia has attempted to involve Poland in the invasion of Ukraine, just as if it were a post-modern re-run of the historic partitions of Poland. “He wanted us to become participants in this partition of Ukraine,” says Sikorski. “Putin wants Poland to commit troops to Ukraine. These were the signals they sent us. … We have known how they think for years. We have known this is what they think for years. This was one of the first things that Putin said to my prime minister, Donald Tusk, [soon to be President of the European Council] when he visited Moscow. He went on to say Ukraine is an artificial country and that Lwow is a Polish city and why don’t we just sort it out together. Luckily Tusk didn’t answer. He knew he was being recorded.”

Putin’s Coup – Ben Judah, Politico Magazine

***

Kiev feels like a Russian city, architecturally and linguistically. Check into a hotel, signal a waiter, enter a shop, and chances are you will be addressed in Russian. Television talk shows are bilingual — guests speak the language in which they are most comfortable. Taxi drivers still listen to “Russky Chanson,” Russian prison ballads that are something of a cross between gangsta rap and country and western music.

But recent months brought subtle changes. The young consider speaking Ukrainian cool. Some older Ukrainians have adopted the attitude that Russia does not own the culture.

“Some of my friends think that real patriots of Ukraine should not speak Russian because they are enemies,” said Irina Bekeshkina, a sociologist who specializes in political polling. “Why should we identify Putin with the Russian language? Russian language and culture has been around a lot longer than Putin.”

Conflict Uncovers a Ukrainian Identity Crisis Over Deep Russian Roots – Neil McFarquhar, The New York Times

***

I wrote a piece for the New Republic soon afterward about the Obamacon phenomenon—prominent conservatives and Republicans who were openly supporting Obama. Many saw in him a classic conservative temperament: someone who avoided lofty rhetoric, an ambitious agenda, and a Utopian vision that would conflict with human nature, real-world barriers to radical reform, and the American system of government. (…)

In my opinion, Obama has governed as a moderate conservative—essentially as what used to be called a liberal Republican before all such people disappeared from the GOP. He has been conservative to exactly the same degree that Richard Nixon basically governed as a moderate liberal, something no conservative would deny today. (Ultra-leftist Noam Chomsky recently called Nixon “the last liberal president.”)

Obama Is a Republican: He’s the Heir to Richard Nixon, Not Saul Alinsky – Bruce Bartlett, The American Conservative

***

Vatican II sought to respond to the changing circumstances of modernity.  Council Fathers wanted to discover how the Holy Spirit was moving the Church to present the teachings of her faith to a new world.  The Council Fathers sought to discover how to follow Our Lord’s great commission to “go and make disciples of all nations” (Mt. 28:19) in the cultures of modernity.  The attempts by the Council Fathers to answer these questions and to present the fruits of their deliberations, however, were hindered by a media contingent attempting to explain the conciliar debates in terms alien to the council and divorced from a deeply historical and nuanced understanding of the faith.  Thus, many misleading and false interpretations of council spread quickly. If nothing else, it allowed for the so-called “hermeneutic of rupture,” which saw Vatican II as a clear split with the tradition of the faith, to survive and take root. Those who were not already well catechized and firm in their faith were unable to differentiate the true faith from that presented to them by a largely secular media.

The Dangers of Transparency – John Macias, Ethika Politika

***

One exception to the generally positive religion-marriage link is Latin America, as the figure above indicates. In many countries in this region, cohabitation, single parenthood, and family instability are high, according to data from the World Family Map. And, yet, so too are forms of the Catholic and Protestant faith. Marriage is comparatively weak, and religion is comparatively strong, in countries like Colombia, Peru, and Ecuador. In these countries, religious faith may be a lifeline for women, children, and families in communities where the family is weak and poverty is common, places where—as political scientists Pippa Norris and Ronald Inglehart have argued—“existential insecurity” is high.

So, perhaps it’s no accident that Pope Francis has been making waves with his untraditional approach to tackling the issue of marriage. He may be less likely to associate strong families with strong faith, and more likely to see the ways in which religious faith can be a balm for fragile families. After all, in Francis’s native Latin America, the ties between hearth and altar are attenuated at best.

Religion and Family around the Globe – Bradford Wilcox, First Things

***

The central message, after all, of the New Atheism — the message that divides it from earlier forms of skepticism — is that it’s perfectly obvious that God and the supernatural don’t exist, and the only reason you might think otherwise is because you’re either a fool or a charlatan. Dawkins doesn’t know theology and is proud he doesn’t; P.Z. Meyers will happily tell you that the religious emperor obviously has no clothes, and any argument to the contrary is merely the courtier’s reply. It’s obvious, they’ll tell you, that the supernatural doesn’t exist, because science hasn’t found it, and we know that science is the only valid method of inquiry, because the supernatural doesn’t exist.

Duh. Obviously.

The mix of self-congratulation and playground taunts that defines the movement is, in essence, merely the flipside of the defining characteristic of religious fundamentalism: a refusal to acknowledge the intellectual experiences of others. Never mind that plenty of thoughtful, sincere people believe in God due to varying mixes of personal experience and ontological argument; it’s just so obvious that scientific rationalism is the only valid means of interpreting the world that the experiences of others can simply be dismissed out of hand.

Rape Culture, Fundamentalism, and the New Atheism – Luke T. Harrington, Presbylutheranism

***

Italijanski filozof Gianni Vatimo razume današnji čas kot »mnoštvo«. S tem hoče povedati, da se sodobni človek ne počuti več povsem vključenega v delo institucij, ki so se oblikovale v 19. in 20. stoletju. Korporativni model, kjer je vsaka panoga ali skupina reprezentirana s strani višjih, ponekod javnih institucij, danes ne deluje več tako organsko kot nekoč. Zato se v sodobnem mnoštvu nenehno rojevajo nove in nove oblike združevanja in delovanja, ki hočejo iz posameznikov ustvarjati javno: pobude, društva, zadruge, kolektive, gibanja, iniciative … Vendar ta združevanja, čeprav izhajajo iz zasebne pobude (s strani posameznikov ali skupin), niso nujno usmerjena le v zasebno dobrobit, temveč želijo doseči neko javno dobro.

Ta premik se je zgodil v vseh segmentih družbe, vendar je najrazločneje opazen prav na področju kulture. Zanjo ne moremo več reči, da je najboljše, najsodobnejše, najkvalitetnejše zaobseženo v javnih ustanovah. Konkretno: ne moremo reči, da so vsi interesi ustvarjalcev in odjemalcev kulture zaobseženi znotraj tradicionalnih kulturnih institucij, kot so kulturni domovi, knjižnice in gledališča. Mesta, ki so znana po svojem živahnem kulturnem življenju, to še dodatno dokazujejo. Berlin, Praga, Krakov, Varšava, Gradec, Gent, pa tudi Pordenone ali Ljubljana ne uživajo ugleda zanimivih in živahnih kulturnih središč zaradi svojih javnih kulturnih zavodov, pač pa ravno zaradi omogočanja spodbud od spodaj, da kulturna združenja bolj optimalno delujejo in s tem ustvarjajo svojo razpoznavnost.

Goriški kulturi naproti – Miha Kosolel, Anja Medved, Gorazd Božič, Goriška.si

Tedenski izbor

lettura

 

Kako to, da ji v Sloveniji nihče nikoli ni postavil težkih vprašanj? Kako to, da na Univerzi v Ljubljani lahko zagovarjaš znanstveni magisterij, čigar mentor je “akademski profesor”, naziv, ki ne obstaja? Kako to, da je v Sloveniji gladko prišla na najvišji položaj? Kako to, da v Sloveniji nihče ni opazil tega, kar so v prvi uri opazili evropski poslanci?

A predsednik slovenske vlade je pa lahko kar vsak? Za razliko od ministrov predsednika vlade niti domači parlamentarni odbori ne izprašajo. Pri čemer so slovenski parlamentarci praviloma vsaj taki začetniki kot bodoči ministri in debata na zaslišanjih ne dosega nivoja evropskega parlamenta. Ker imamo nestrankarsko demokracijo brez pravih politikov.

Kako to, da njenih omejitev niso opazili mediji? Z izjemo tistih, katerih fokus je bila Bandiera rossa. Kako to, da naš politični sistem na najvišje položaje pripelje ljudi, ki v mednarodnem okolju, torej zunaj akvarija, popolnoma pogorijo? Mimogrede, kakšne so pravzaprav mednarodne reference trenutnega političnega vrha? (…)

Komisarka Alenka Bratušek je rezultat akvarija, ki smo si ga naredili, ki ga vzdržujemo. Pretvarjamo se in nas pretvarjajo, da je ta akvarij vse, kar obstaja. Do so najboljši v akvariju najboljši na svetu. Na nek način je Alenka Bratušek njegova žrtev.

Nevidni akvarij Alenke Bratušek – Žiga Turk, Časnik

***

Es gibt eine Menge Dinge, die eine angehende EU-Kommissarin können muss, um das grilling zu überstehen – jene Anhörung im Europa-Parlament, bei der Kandidatinnen und Kandidaten ihre Kompetenz für das hohe Amt beweisen sollen. Über glühende Kohlen laufen zu können, gehört normalerweise nicht dazu.

Doch genau diese Qualifikation bringt Violeta Bulc mit, soeben von der slowenischen Regierung als neue EU-Kommissarin nominiert. Sie soll Sloweniens ehemalige Regierungschefin Alenka Bratusek ersetzen, der das Europaparlament die Zustimmung verweigert hatte.

Die 50 Jahre alte Bulc ist nicht bloß Eigentümerin der Beratungsfirma “Vibacom”, sondern auch begeisterte Anhängerin von Esoterik und New Age. Auf ihrem Firmen-Blog erklärt sie, an die “Kraft von Netzwerken, das holistische Individuum und positive Energie” zu glauben.

Umstrittene EU-Kandidatin Bulc: Komissarin für positive Energie – Gregor Peter Schmitz, Der Spiegel

***

Temelje negativne kadrovske selekcije je slovenska politika postavila že na začetku samostojne Slovenije. Razkril jih je Ivan Oman, ko je javno rekel: “Ni važno, da je pismen, važno, da je naš!”

Slovensko politiko tudi danes poganja vodilo: ni važno, kaj znaš, važno je, da si naš.

Zato ostaja blokovska delitev na naše in vaše, zato v slovenski politiki ni mogoče uspeti sposobnim, ki bi smeli razmišljati s svojo glavo, zato predsedniki strank nimajo dostojnih naslednikov, imajo zgolj svoje kopije. A vsaka kopija je le še slabša od originala.

V slovenski politiki so lahko uspešni samo luzerji – Uroš Urbas, Planet Siol

***

Kdaj in kako bo drugače? Takole smo zapisali v zborniku Evropska Slovenija:

»Z uveljavitvijo liberalne misli bo na prvo mesto spet stopil posameznik: svoboden, odgovoren in ustvarjalen. Iz množice takih posameznikov bodo ob ustrezni, spodbudni družbeni klimi zrasle meritorne elite z znanjem, ki bodo zagotovile človeške vire za delovanje institucij. Na drugi strani bodo ti isti posamezniki res uveljavili svojo svobodno gospodarsko pobudo in na njeni osnovi ustvarjali zasebni kapital.

Iz tega se bodo pobirali davki za delovanje institucij demokratične in pravne države, za socialne transferje najšibkejšim v družbi, presežki pa se bodo lahko namenjali za investicije v novo gospodarsko rast, kakor tudi za delovanje civilne družbe. Vse to se bo odražalo v močnih zasebnih, civilnodružbenih in državnih institucijah. Te bodo predstavljale prostor za uveljavljanje idej in bodo hkrati njihova valilnica. Večja kot bo možnost za uresničitev idej, večja bo spodbuda posameznikov za njihovo proizvodnjo. In to bo gonilo svobodomiselnega napredka.

Spoštovanje vsakega posameznika, njihova ekonomska okrepitev, razcvet civilne družbe in s tem pravega družbenega pluralizma bodo Slovenijo odprli tudi navzven in jo spremenili v svetovljansko družbo. Kot taka, odprta za pretočnost dobrih idej, ne glede na njihov izvor, bo sama po sebi pritegnila tudi številne posameznike iz sveta, ki bodo s seboj prinesli nove ideje, nov kapital in nove spodbude za nadaljnji družbeni razvoj, obenem pa bodo Slovenijo vpeli tudi v globalne okvire.«

Tako se bodo postopoma vzpostavile predpostavke Slovenije kot normalne evropske države. Tedaj ne bomo več kulturni šok za druge, temveč bomo – sebi in drugim – v iskren, a skromen ponos.

Kulturni šok v Bruslju – Matej Avbelj, Ius Info

***

Orbán exerts fascination on international commentators because he is an Anakin Skywalker-like figure who walked from the light side (democratic, liberal, anti-communist) to the dark side (illiberal and pro-Russian). But this response suggests that Orbán’s story is unique, which is unfortunately not true. Orbán is not the only opportunist populist politician who lost his enthusiasm for western-type democracies. The Turkish president Erdogan for example – who began his career as a religious hardliner – surprised many at the beginning of his political career with his moderate, reformist line of governance. Erdogan established good relations with the US, the EU, and even Israel, and made steps to calm relations with Greece. But he gradually shifted away from this political line and became a populist, nationalist conservative leader, turning against western values and allies, who now wants Turkey to walk its own way instead of belonging to a western alliance. It is symbolic that Erdogan, formerly a good ally of Israel, has just returned the award he received from the Jewish World Congress a decade ago.

This should be a wake-up call for the west: the political attractiveness of the western model is eroding, and populist politicians who have made many efforts to gain the support of the west one or two decades ago are now abandoning the western path.

More Hungarys in Eastern Europe – Péter Krekó, Open Democracy 

***

The question of a double standard on equal rights has much to do with the left’s longstanding devotion to multiculturalism and cultural relativism: that we must respect the value systems of cultures different from our own, and that, since we are all morally compromised, we shouldn’t cast stones. As Azlan points out in his CNN interview, Saudi Arabia may be the most extreme Muslim country in the Middle East, and still it’s the United States’ closest Arab ally. Too often we have funded extremist regimes in the region at the expense of fostering democracy, creating an environment for radical Islam to thrive.

But this doesn’t negate the argument that there is a double standard. Even if we admit complicity in the rise of militant Islam, we have every right to condemn the values of Islamic fundamentalists. Fears of cultural imperiousness cannot allow us to ignore or, worse, justify beliefs and behavior in other cultures that we would never accept here at home.

Yes, Bill Maher Is Boorsih. But We Shouldn’t Be Afraid to Criticize Islam – Eric Sasson, The New Republic

***

Na simbolni ravni za Stranko Mira Cerarja ni najhujše to, da je bilo za njenega županskega kandidata nedosegljivih že pet odstotkov glasov in da je v mestnem svetu šele na tretjem mestu. Ne, bistvena je njena vnaprejšnja prepustitev terena Zoranu Jankoviću. Niti za resen izziv niso imeli volje. S tem pa se SMC dokončno odmika od predstave o domnevno sredinski stranki, drugačni od predhodnic, ki so jo z njo povezovali nekateri komentatorji po volitvah.  S svojo ljubljansko kapitulacijo so Cerarjevi dokazali, da so povsem običajni nasledniki LDS in Pozitivne Slovenije,  stranka brez lastne volje v službi svojega bloka.

Majhen obliž na veliki rani – Aleš Maver, Časnik

***

Several of the traits that Dawkins displays in his campaign against religion are on show here. There is his equation of superiority with cleverness: the visiting aliens are more advanced creatures than humans because they are smarter and know more than humans do. The theory of evolution by natural selection is treated not as a fallible theorythe best account we have so far of how life emerged and developedbut as an unalterable truth, which has been revealed to a single individual of transcendent genius. There cannot be much doubt that Dawkins sees himself as a Darwin-like figure, propagating the revelation that came to the Victorian naturalist.

Among these traits, it is Dawkins’s identification with Darwin that is most incongruous. No two minds could be less alike than those of the great nineteenth-century scientist and the latter-day evangelist for atheism. Hesitant, doubtful, and often painfully perplexed, Darwin understood science as an empirical investigation in which truth is never self-evident and theories are always provisional. If science, for Darwin, was a method of inquiry that enabled him to edge tentatively and humbly toward the truth, for Dawkins, science is an unquestioned view of the world.

The Closed Mind of Richard Dawkins – John Gray, The New Republic

***

Novi nadškof ima tako vse pogoje za neodvisnost in distanco do dosedanjih škofijskih in medškofijskih upravljavskih struktur in mrež, do katerih se je zaradi toliko bolečih dogodkov v zadnjem času pojavilo veliko nezaupanja.

To bo verjetno eden od temeljnih preizkusnih kamnov novega vodenja – na eni strani graditi na vsem dobrem in v spoštovanju in pravilnem vrednotenju prispevka vsakega doslej odgovornega posameznika, po drugem pa odločnost za spremembe ter imenovanje, priznanje in odpravo nepravilnosti, napak ali celo zlorab.

Ta distanca in neodvisnost mu bosta lahko pomagali pri uvajanju potrebnih sprememb, če bo želel in če se bo na to prednost seveda tudi naslonil.

Prvi vtisi o novem ljubljanskem nadškofu – Štefan Kržišnik, Iskreni.net

***

Caring for your corner, making the world a better place, one square foot at a time: this is localism, and conservatism, at root. Supporting the foundations, heritage, and traditions that one has inherited. Using one’s talents and gifts to build a better street, a better neighborhood, a better town or city.

Why Cities Need Localists – Gracy Olmstead, The American Conservative

***

An atemporal victory of masculinity over the principle of femininity is no victory. A life without history, without children, without season, without going back, without produce besides money, without a fixed vision of “the other side of the river,” just the daily, masturbatory existence of constant acquisition and forward-plowing line without end — this over-masculization is as much a source of impotence, rage and violence as it is of millionaires, and could as easily end in prolonged video-gaming as becoming a CEO. Women, by the very mystery of their form, embody a conception of time that teaches men to rise to the fullness of their humanity — to resist the temptation to violence which is a foremost perversion of masculinity.

It is far more difficult to speak of what the masculinity offers to femininity, for while I daily receive an education from the latter, marvel at the fact, and can attest to its reality — women are awfully quiet about whether men are doing them any good. But if I were to venture a guess, I would say that the masculine form is an education in teleology — in achieving an end. It is written in the very muscular structure of the male form — to accomplish the task, to complete the mission, to do and do well, to use strength.

Masculine and Feminine Time – Marc Barnes, Bad Catholic

***

Razsežnost vojne je pomenila, da je kruto realnost jarkov na svoji koži izkusil marsikateri slikar, pesnik in pisatelj. Med slovenskimi ustvarjalci je bil v takih kritikah šaljivo oster prav Hinko Smrekar, ki je v svojih podobah in zapisih obsojal vojno, opozarjal na njen nesmisel in razgalil brutalnost avtoritarnega vojaškega sistema. S svojim begom v zaigrano blaznost pa postal “simbol usode malega človeka v spopadu z represivnim militarizmom”. Žal je v drugem velikem svetovnem spopadu sam postal del tragike in nesmisla, na katerega je opozarjal. Na prvi oktobrski dan leta 1942 so ga po brutalnem zaslišanju v Gramozni jami ustrelili fašisti. Če je pogreb minil brez prisotnosti znancev, pa je bil drugi dan Smrekarjev grob ves pokrit s cvetjem.

Zaigrana blaznost Hinka Smrekarja – Maja Kač, MMC RTVSLO

***

Starejši občani so, kot je znano, pogosto tarča raznih vsiljivcev. Ker neprijetni pripetljaj, ki se je zgodil Mesečevim starim staršem tudi ni edini, v bodoče malce več pozornosti ne bo odveč.

Pozor starejši: vsiljivi novinarji revije Reporter na vratih! – Uroš Abram, Spletna Mladina

***

Državnega monopolista niso še nikoli prisilili v učinkovitost s tem, da so mu dali več denarja. Ukrotiš ga lahko le, če ga izpostaviš odprti konkurenci ali pa ga preprosto ukineš.

Konkurenca pri avtomobilskem zavarovanju deluje, prav tako deluje ločitev na obvezni in prostovoljni del zavarovanja (na primer kasko). Na podoben način bi lahko delovala tudi pri zdravstvenem zavarovanju in tudi deluje v številnih državah, po katerih se sicer radi zgledujemo, na primer v Nemčiji, Avstriji ali na Nizozemskem.

Če bi konkurenco dopustili, bi jo ZZZS najprej skušal onemogočiti, podobno, kot je Telekom nekoč onemogočal konkurenčne ponudnike storitev. Tako kot se agenciji za varstvo konkurence in za telekomunikacije dolgo nista hoteli spraviti nad Telekom, se verjetno tudi agencija za zavarovalni nadzor ne bi lahkega srca spravila nad ZZZS. Ko bi se, bi se moral ta končno prilagoditi. Morda bi kar sam predlagal spremembo upravljavske strukture, se trše pogajal z dobavitelji in z lastnimi močmi preganjal korupcijo.

Ukinitev dopolnilnega zavarovanja je slepilni manever – Janez Šušteršič, Planet Siol

***

Wealth inequality is generated not by intrinsic features of capitalism—the most important of which, in Taleb’s view, is that every participant is exposed to the losses that go hand in hand with risk—but from specific state and central-bank policies that reward leveraged speculation and enable financiers to play with no skin in the game. In Taleb’s trenchant phrase, financial inequalities are “one crash away from reallocation.”

This suggests that one way to address both wealth inequality and speculative excesses is to rewrite the rules so that participants must have skin in the game. Whether this is possible in an era of regulatory capture by the very financiers the rules aim to corral is an open question. Wallerstein’s school, like Piketty, also overlooks the transformative power of the factors Giovanni Arrighi—another disciple of Braudel and author of The Long Twentieth Century—identifies as the key drivers of capital accumulation: attracting entrepreneurs and mobile capital.

What could replace the current iteration of global state-capitalism? If we assemble these three potentially transformative dynamics—degrowth, the recoupling of risk and loss, and entrepreneurial mobile capital—we discern a new and potentially productive teleological arc to global capitalism, one that moves from a capitalism based on financial hyper-centralization and obsession with rising consumption to one focused on more efficient use of resources and capital via decentralization and localized innovation.

Is There Capitalism After Cronysm? – Charles Hugh Smith, The American Conservative

Tedenski izbor

 

According to a recent study conducted by Bond University in Australia, sharks are nine times as likely to attack and kill men than they are women. If sinister motivation is attributed for this disparity, as is done in the cases of sex and racial disparities, we can only conclude that sharks are sexist. Another sex disparity is despite the fact that men are 50 percent of the population and so are women, men are struck by lightning six times as often as women. I wonder what whoever is in charge of lightning has against men.

Another gross statistical disparity is despite the fact that Jews are less than 3 percent of the U.S. population and a mere 0.2 percent of the world’s population, between 1901 and 2010, Jews were 35 percent of American and 22 percent of the world’s Nobel Prize winners.

/…/

If America’s diversity worshippers see underrepresentation as “probative” of racial discrimination, what do they propose be done about overrepresentation? After all, overrepresentation and underrepresentation are simply different sides of injustice. If those in one race are overrepresented, it might mean they’re taking away what rightfully belongs to another race. For example, is it possible that Jews are doing things that sabotage the chances of a potential Indian, Alaska Native or Mexican Nobel Prize winner? What about the disgraceful lack of diversity in professional basketball and ice hockey? There’s not even geographical diversity in professional ice hockey; not a single player can boast of having been born and raised in Hawaii, Louisiana or Mississippi.

Do Statistical Disparities Mean Injustice? – Walter E. Williams, The New American

***

Political correctness thus results as a confusion of political word for political action—so saying the wrong words is doing the wrong action. If I say something that disagrees with your position or lifestyle, it may be taken as an actual assault on you, the person.

/…/

Virtues, however, cannot be gained by “identifying” with others psychologically—a virtue is the skill of an action performed repeatedly over time. As Aristotle said, since we are what we repeatedly do, character is a habit and not an attitude. To fight this decadent culture in the academy, pointing it out and criticizing it is not sufficient. As Roger Kimball notes, “those who want to retake the university must devote themselves [to] cultivating those virtues” of candidness and courage, “and perhaps even more to cultivating the virtue of patience, capitalizing wherever possible on whatever local opportunities present themselves” in exercising them (Tenured Radicals, xlvii).

Political Correctness and the University’s Pink Police State – Ryan Shinkel, Ethika Politika

***

We must give up on the hope of restoring the past in this culture. It’s not that some aspects of the past shouldn’t be reclaimed, but rather that doing so, at least at a society-wide level, is not feasible at this point in time. The more we act as if it were so, the greater our losses will be once we definitively lose an unwinnable battle. This “take back America” stuff is self-deluding nostalgia, and the more conservatives believe it, the worse off they will be.

Roger Scruton’s Big Question for the Right – Rod Dreher, The American Conservative

***

Ne razumem, zakaj so sicer inteligentni ljudje pripravljeni vedno znova ponavljati ene in iste neumnosti oziroma laži, ko gre denimo za razliko med zasebnim in državnim lastništvom podjetij? Jih ideologija povsem zaslepi? Ali gre morda za kako drugačno dojemanje tega, kaj je dobro, uspešno in za regijo pomembno podjetje?

Marcel Štefančič, jr. je danes v Studiu City izjavil:

“V Sloveniji imamo dva farmacevtska giganta, eden je Krka drugi je Lek. Krke nismo prodali, Lek smo prodali. Ali opazite kakšno razliko med njima? Vam jaz povem: od Krke živi kompletna regija, od Leka nima nihče nič.” (RTV 4D – Studio City, 22. sept. 2014)

Ampak že če preberete samo prve zadetke za geslo “Lek in Krka” v spletnem iskalniku, dobite povsem drugačno sliko.

***

Dr. Cerar, ko ste leta 1990 s skupino študentov raziskovali te umore, ste pogumno in odločno predlagali, da bi zoper storilce vložili ovadbo, saj je jasno, »da sodijo ustrelitve na meji bolj pod opis dejanja v 46. členu KZ RS, kot pa v izvrševanju ustave in zakonov. Omenjeni 46. člen namreč povsem nedvoumno določa: ‘Kdor komu vzame življenje, se kaznuje z zaporom najmanj petih let.’« Vaš predlog je prav tako naletel na gluha ušesa. Vendar časi se spreminjajo in zdaj imate lepo priložnost, da kot odrasel moški na visokem položaju uresničite zamisli skromnega, a drznega in prodornega mladeniča …

Glede na vaše odlično stališče iz leta 1990 vas, dr. Cerar, prosim, da bi spodbudili g. Maslešo, da bi le našel dovolj moči in spoznal, da je bilo njegovo zanikanje zločinov na meji nadvse sporno dejanje in da naj zoper sebe in druge sodelujoče pri ubojih na meji napiše ovadbo (npr. s temi zločini se je še pred leti javno hvalil general Marijan Kranjc).

Predvsem pa naj novo državno vodstvo ponovno presodi, ali lahko človek, ki zanika zločine, pri katerih je sodeloval, še vodi Vrhovno sodišče RS.

Odprto pismo Miru Cerarju – Jože Dežman, Časnik

***

If Orwell stands as the model leftist who exposed the horrors his own side was willing to commit, Herzen stands as one who went along even though he knew better. More than a limousine liberal, he was a sapphire socialist. In spite of all his natural skepticism, he was willing to overcome it—heroically, he thought—rather than be seen agreeing with the wrong people.

That said, it is no less true that Herzen was aware of this very weakness. “I hate phrases to which we [radicals] have grown used, like Christians to the Creed. They appear moral and good on the surface but they bind thought.”

The Minister of Paradox – Gary Saul Morson, The New Criterion

***

Ali se je raznoterim činom vseh vrst italijanskih vojaških sil, ki so si tako strastno želele prihod svetega očeta na kostnico v Redipulji in si preko vojaškega ordinariata obdržale organizacijo dogodka tudi ob tihem nasprotovanju vernikov krajevne nadškofije, morda papeževo razmišljanje zdelo izzivalno?
Odgovora nimamo. Ostal pa nam je globok vtis, da je papež s svojimi besedami, pa tudi s samim potekom svojega sobotnega obiska, ko je pred osrednjo svečanostjo v Redipulji obiskal še avstro-ogrsko pokopališče v Foljanu, kjer dejansko počivajo ‘naši predniki’ (kdo izmed naših se je vojskoval v italijanskih vrstah!), pospravil z vsako ceneno nacionalno-vojaško retoriko. “Vojna je norost”… “in zdaj je čas joka”. In pika. Najbrž se je papež Frančišek zaradi istih razlogov izognil tudi običajni toplini do vernikov, saj se ni podal mednje niti ob prihodu niti ob odhodu: to ni bila ne vojaška parada ne praznik, česar tudi marsikateri vernik resnici na ljubo ni dojel.

To ni bila ne vojaška parada ne praznik – Igor Gregori, Novi glas

***

Osnovna šola (in seveda celotna vzgojno-izobraževalna vertikala) je bolj ščitenje privilegija toplih malic in vožnje na delo, dopusta in povsem zagotovljenega delovnega mesta, njegovega lastništva, kakor realizacija tega, kar potrebuje družba in mladi ljudje: dobre izobrazbe in vzgoje.

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Zato je slovenska osnovna šola je podobna razvajenemu in z boleznijo zaznamovanemu otroku: imamo brez dvoma najbolj bogat predmetnik, najbolj obsežne učne načrte in najbolj centralizirano osnovno šolo v Evropi. Težko je našteti vse njene posebnosti, dejstvo pa je, da bi ob ostri redukciji vseh dobrot, ki jih uživa zdaj, brez dvoma padla v komo. Zato bo potrebna dolgotrajna dieta, da se bo vzpostavilo stanje, ki ne bo več ogrožalo normalnega vzgojno-izobraževalnega sistema.

Kriza blagostanja – Dušan Merc, Pogledi

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Doesn’t “progressive” reflect the spirit of the Progressive Era a century ago, when the country benefited from the righteous efforts of muckrakers and others who fought big-city political bosses, attacked business monopolies and promoted Good Government?

The era was partly about that. But philosophically, the progressive movement at the turn of the 20th century had roots in German philosophy (Hegel and Nietzsche were big favorites) and German public administration (Woodrow Wilson’s open reverence for Bismarck was typical among progressives). To simplify, progressive intellectuals were passionate advocates of rule by disinterested experts led by a strong unifying leader. They were in favor of using the state to mold social institutions in the interests of the collective. They thought that individualism and the Constitution were both outmoded.

It is that core philosophy extolling the urge to mold society that still animates progressives today—a mind-set that produces the shutdown of debate and growing intolerance that we are witnessing in today’s America.

The Trouble Isn’t Liberals. It’s Progressives – Charles Murray, The Wall Street Journal

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Predvsem pa se politika z etiko nima kaj ukvarjati. Naloga politike je, da poskrbi za pravno državo, ki bo pravočasno in pošteno kaznovala ljudi, ki prestopijo meje razumljivo napisanih in logičnih zakonov. Ko pa politiki začnejo govoriti, da morajo ljudje postati bolj etični, pa to pomeni, da želijo s svojimi instrumenti – ki so po definiciji instrumenti oblasti in prisile – spreminjati ljudi same.

Politik, ki si za cilj postavi spreminjati naravo ljudi, slej ko prej postane bodisi dalajlama bodisi stalinist.

Učna leta izumitelja Mirka – Janez Šušteršič, Siol.net

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Words you probably never thought you’d read in the Telegraph. Words which, as a Gladstonian Liberal, I never thought I’d write.

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This sort of utterly amoral screw-everyone capitalism has become much more prevalent in the last 15 years. Our financial elite is now totally out of control. They learned nothing from the crisis, except that the rest of us were stupid enough to give them a second chance. And, now, having plucked all the “low hanging fruit,” they’re destroying the middle classes for profit.

Our current problems have their roots in the early 80s. While much of what Reagan and Thatcher did was necessary, the trouble is that they set a deregulatory train in motion which, over the last couple of decades has dismantled so much of the legal framework that protected us from greedy scuzzballs.

The middle classes went along with it. We were sick of the Left, tired of powerful unions and, besides, very few us could remember the inequality of the 1920s that gave rise to many of these regulations in the first place. Also, vain fools that we were, we identified upwards. We thought the elite had our interests at heart. The 0.1% must have found this pretty cute. They knew the truth. We weren’t their pals, we were just at the end of the line for the financial blood-letting.

Why aren’t the British middle classes staging a revolution? – Alex Proud, The Telegraph

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I’d like to remind you of Alasdair MacIntyre’s definition of emotivism in After Virtue:

“What is the key to the social content of emotivism? It is the fact that emotivism entails the obliteration of any genuine distinction between manipulative and non-manipulative social relations. Consider the contrast between, for example, Kantian ethics and emotivism on this point. For Kant–and a parallel point could be made about many earlier moral philosophers–the difference between a human relationship uninformed by morality and one so informed is precisely the difference between one in which each person treat the other primarily as a means to his or her ends and one in which one treats each other as an end.”

Walsh almost exclusively uses others as means to his own end of scoring points in the culture wars (and boosting internet traffic). This is why his writing is so banal. It does not challenge anyone to drop their defenses.

In the end Walsh becomes like his enemies, because in his rivalries he plays a zero-sum cultural warrior game of ‘either me or the other’ (I just clicked on a link to an interview with him some random site and the popup ad predictably read “fight the liberal media”). Perhaps the only heuristic value of Walsh’s writing lies in the way that it suggests an overlap between MacIntyre‘s discussion of emotivism and Girard‘s discussion of mimetic rivalry.

On Not Fighting Matt Walsh’s Cultural Warrior Contagion – Artur Rosman, Cosmos in the Lost

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Za konec pa še naravnost genialni zapis Carla Truemana v First Things, ki ga zaradi kratkosti objavljamo kar v celoti:

Britain’s Daily Telegraph reports that anti-incest laws in Germany could be struck down on the grounds that they constitute an unacceptable intrusion into the right to sexual self-determination. The narrow context is the case of a brother and sister who have lived together for years and have four children. The wider context is the very meager basis upon which laws relating to sexual ethics are now built.

In a world where consent provides the only de facto limit to acceptable sexual ethics, this legal move has a certain obvious legal and cultural logic. If the brother and sister are in love, why should they not live together in a sexual partnership? Even the pragmatic argument from the risk of congenital defects in children is irrelevant: birth control and abortion are the obvious answers which this present age would give.

In fact, it is not so much the legitimation of incest in itself as it is the collapse of the boundaries of sexual taboos given our current ethical logic which makes the case significant. The question of consent is itself surely a complex one when it comes to sexual morality and even this might soon be faced with a serious challenge. Take, for example, bestiality (or, to use the more anodyne modern term, zoophilia). I regularly eat cows, pigs, sheep and chickens whose consent to be part of my diet is (I assume) rarely if ever sought before they arrive on my dinner plate. The law as it stands clearly does not recognize the need for a cow to give permission before it is slaughtered and turned into a hamburger. One assumes that it would not require its consent for a less drastic fate.

A thought thus comes to mind if any notion of sexual ethics is not to vanish in its entirety: Either consent is not a sufficient basis for a sexual ethic, or eating meat needs to be outlawed as soon as possible.