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Corporate Governance Reform - Ideas

by Zwackus Sun Nov 13th, 2011 at 09:47:02 PM EST

ET is excellent at deconstructing events in politics and economics, and at picking apart the dominant narratives that are destroying Western society.  Further, there has been a fair bit of discussion regarding alternative solutions (TINA) to the European financial crisis.

However, I've not seen so much in the way of real discussion of larger reforms that would help fix the mess we're in.  I'm not talking about utopian social reforms so much as legislative-type proposals that could use existing institutions and frameworks to solve various social problems.  Obviously, anything effective would be anathema to the powers that be, but it doesn't hurt to think about and discuss these sorts of things.

So here's an idea for people to mull over - Corporate Governance Reform.

Read more... (31 comments, 618 words in story)

Western Intervention in Libya - a consideration

by Zwackus Thu Aug 25th, 2011 at 09:52:41 AM EST

In the comments of a recent Salon on an article about Libya and its future, I was called to task for being pro-intervention.

I don't think of myself as a rampant militarist, nor as an all-weather defender of "humanitarian" military intervention.  But I suppose I am a bit more supportive of the West's actions in Libya than some here.  I started to write a response on the issue, but it quickly became diary-length.  So here's the diary.

front-paged by afew

Read more... (179 comments, 1416 words in story)

Liberal Interventionism, Human Rights, and Political Philosophy

by Zwackus Tue Apr 5th, 2011 at 05:46:41 AM EST

A few days ago Frank Schnittger posted a very interesting diary on Samantha Power, the Monster, and the Libyan Intervention, inviting a discussion on what I think are fundamental questions and problems in liberal thought and political philosophy in the context of the Libyan Intervention.  Later in that diary, ceebs posted another quite interesting discussion of the origins and evolution of the idea of military humanitarian interventionism from the Adam Curtis Blog, Goodies and Baddies.

However, the diary got hijacked by a discussion of DPU ammunition without really addressing the matters initially presented for discussion.  So, round 2!

front-paged by afew

Read more... (22 comments, 940 words in story)

PNAC and the Bush Legacy - Pathetic Failure?

by Zwackus Tue Sep 14th, 2010 at 02:01:58 AM EST

In a several day old Salon thread, on a thread about the legacy of Bush, Cheney, and the Project for a New American Century, I wrote this.

On another point, could you even say they got lucky?  Sure, they got their "transformative event," and the wars they wanted - which proved what a complete bunch of idiots they were.  The wars have been disastrous failures for everyone except defense contractors, and the people who argued for them are generally agreed to have been either dramatically misguided or idiots.  Their big master plan was shown to be little more than fanboy drooling, as America teeters on the bring of complete collapse.

This prompted a response from generic . . .

But in a lot of ways they succeeded. Constitutional rights are almost gone and a lot of their policies are now locked in.
Unemployment may be disastrously high, but absent a social movement that threatens the hierarchy of property in a big way that will probably only lead to more recruits for the army. The Federal deficit is quite a lot bigger than it would have been, but it is also not all that important. The army may be overstretched, but it also isn't needed to make defiance of US dictates incredible costly.
The point I am trying to make is as follows: The Neocons may have through their actions made most everyone worse off, but I doubt that they brought the US empire much closer to collapse.

It seems like something worth discussing.

Read more... (203 comments, 443 words in story)

Is there a point to saving money?

by Zwackus Wed Dec 30th, 2009 at 02:27:23 AM EST

This is not a terribly substantive diary, nor one which presents new information or arguments.  However, it may be a place for substantive discussion, as the question posed in the title may perhaps be a gateway to a further discussion of one of ET's favorite topics . . . DOOM!!!!

So here it is - is there any point, given where the world economy and the whole of Western Civilization are headed, in saving money?

Read more... (114 comments, 499 words in story)

Insanity in Japan

by Zwackus Fri Apr 24th, 2009 at 05:35:00 PM EST

I had a bizarre encounter yesterday.

I was scurrying around after work, getting stuff ready for a department barbecue we're having after school today.  I had shopping to do, but I wanted to price things at several stores before I shopped, but I had something being delivered at 6:00, but I needed to eat because I knew I'd be likely pinned down until the delivery person arrives, possible not until 8:00. Hustle, bustle, scurry scurry scurry.

Continued after the fold

Read more... (7 comments, 806 words in story)

It's just not worth it anymore

by Zwackus Wed Apr 15th, 2009 at 06:47:34 AM EST

The results of a recent study show what some of us may have intuitively felt for some time now.

Cost of Living Now Outweighs Benefits - America's Finest News Source

ET's always been strong on Doom, but it seems like the gloom side is still alive and kicking.

Read more... (15 comments, 291 words in story)

Help me fill my school's library

by Zwackus Wed Dec 10th, 2008 at 05:51:52 AM EST

As those of you who helped out with my last request, regarding graphs, may remember, I am a teacher at an international school in Japan.  Once again, I'm asking for help, but this time with books.

Read more... (38 comments, 262 words in story)

Sensei, graphu? Graphu?

by Zwackus Fri Jul 11th, 2008 at 03:21:30 AM EST

I have recently switched jobs, and am now a real and proper teacher at a combined middle/high school in a dumpy city on the outskirts of Tokyo.  Follow me below the fold for an amusing tale of teaching, English, woe, and a subject near and dear to the hearts of ET readers everywhere . . . graphs!

Evidence graphs are not boring - Promoted by Migeru

Read more... (44 comments, 819 words in story)

Insane Policy Ideas - An end to advertising

by Zwackus Wed Jan 30th, 2008 at 07:54:36 AM EST

A common theme in the various discussion on this site is that it's important for the left to have alternative ideas ready and waiting, so that when the moment comes it can be seized.  Every so often a discussion of possible policy solutions to the diverse ills of the modern world comes up, but it seems as if it would be a topic worthy of more regular attention.

So, I thought maybe I'd try and help get things started with an idea of my own.  Should this provoke an intriguing discussion, I may post more, and make it a series of sorts.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own policy ideas!

This entry tackles the problem (at least, I think it's a problem!) of advertising, and proposed a rather radical step - its complete abolition.

It's not called "Insane Policy Ideas" for nothing!

Read more... (40 comments, 1042 words in story)

Rural Population Decline

by Zwackus Sat Sep 15th, 2007 at 10:53:31 PM EST

A recent discussion in the daily news forum got me thinking about the issue of rural population decline in developed countries.  I have a sense of the problem in Japan and the US, but I'm curious about the situation in other parts of the world, and I wonder what the community thinks about the issue.

Articles and discussion after the jump.

Read more... (10 comments, 1333 words in story)

Russian "Corruption" in the NYT

by Zwackus Wed Jun 14th, 2006 at 06:34:19 PM EST

I found a somewhat puzzling article in the NYT international pages this morning over coffee.  It's a really quite confusing report about what could either be a trade dispute, a regulatory conflict between the Russian government and transnational capital, or plain old corruption.  So, I thought, maybe somebody here could clarify what exactly is going on.  More on the flip.

Full text of the article should be available here

Read more... (8 comments, 378 words in story)
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