Politics

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Why We’re Polarized

Simon & Schuster

As the trial against Donald Trump enters its final stages, and as the selection of the Democrats’ contender is about to start, this new book offers a sharp lens for understanding the current state of the United States. Ezra Klein, founder of Vox.com, does an excellent job in compiling evidence and forming it into a narrative that is easy to read and easy to understand. His key argument: «America’s political system isn’t broken. The truth is scarier: it’s working exactly as designed.» And while the book focuses on the USA, since it is strongly based on findings from social science, it can be applied to other countries, too. Get it now (you can read and listen to an excerpt on Vox.com)

Published in Weekly Filet #287

Could mega-dams kill the mighty River Nile?

Al Jazeera

Ethiopia is building one of the largest dams in the world, leaving Sudan and Egypt further downstream the Nile at serious risk of water shortages. If Ethiopia fills the dam within three years, Egypt would lose half of its annual water supply. Al Jazeera has produced a compehensive visual piece on the project and its ramifications. (Also, did you know that the Nile flows very slowly? 65 times slower than the Amazon).

Published in Weekly Filet #286

Why Is Putin’s Latest Power Grab So Surprising?

GQ

Vladimir Putin is reshuffling the political system (once again) to secure his power beyond 2024, when term limits force him to step down as president. Julia Ioffe with a good short explanation of what exactly is happening here with Putins latest unsurprisingly surprising move.

Published in Weekly Filet #285

Impeachment.fyi

Impeachment.fyi

The trial against Donald Trump is officially underway. The judge and the jury (all senators) have been sworn in, the actual trial will begin next week. Which makes today the perfect day for subscribing to Impeachment.fyi, the best way to follow the proceedings without getting overwhelmed. For months now, Dan Sinker, journalist and maker of all kinds of great things, has produced a concise daily summary of what one needs to know about the impeachment.

Published in Weekly Filet #285

The Candidates: Elizabeth Warren

The Daily

A profile of a politician like I’ve never heard it before. Michael Barbaro and the team at «The Daily» portray Elizabeth Warren in a wonderful, novel way and explain how she became the woman who is now running for president of the United States (and who would be, as she said yesterday, «the youngest woman ever inaugurated».

Published in Weekly Filet #281

The British are going to miss Europe

The Correspondent

Written before the election, no less applicable right after. An ode to Europe and an explanation why people struggle to feel European. «What makes Europe truly European are all those things that you don’t see when they’re all around and only notice when they’re not.»

Published in Weekly Filet #280

Seniors Are More Conservative Because the Poor Don’t Survive to Become Seniors

New York Magazine

«So it’s not just a matter of people naturally growing more conservative as they grow older. It’s also a matter of the wealthier — and more conservative — people surviving more often, and for longer.» – I have never thought of it from this perspective, but it makes an awful lot of sense. Would love to see a broader study that shows how (or not) this applies to other countries.

Published in Weekly Filet #276 In collection: Think Different

There Is Only One Trump Scandal

The Atlantic

More than a year into his presidency, not a week goes by without a troubling revelation about Trump or without him doing something that has you shake your head in disbelief (often both, actually, and multiple times). Here’s a way to wrap your head around the madness: «There are not many Trump scandals. There is one Trump scandal. Singular: the corruption of the American government by the president and his associates…»

Published in Weekly Filet #275