Author Archives: Nicholas Gruen

Doing good: One door at a time

You will no doubt be familiar with a fund-raising technique involving people coming to your door and asking for money for one cause or another. No matter how good the cause or how respected and established the cause, the technique … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, Ethics | 4 Comments

Detoxing democracy 3: Bringing citizen deliberation into government administration

Cross posted at the Mandarin There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order ofthings. Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old order of things, and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new. Niccolò Machiavelli Two forms of representation One can distinguish between two ways … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, Economics and public policy | 3 Comments

Can we attract good political leaders? Hint – yes

Can a democracy attract competent leaders, while attaining broad representation? Economic models suggest that free-riding incentives and lower opportunity costs give the less competent a comparative advantage at entering political life. Moreover, if elites have more human capital, selecting on … Continue reading

Posted in Political theory, Politics - international, Politics - national | 4 Comments

Falling water

Posted in Art and Architecture | Leave a comment

Detoxing democracy 2: A mixed model of democracy for Australia

Crossposted from The Mandarin today where they almost never make comments :( [T]here is an Australia of the spirit, submerged and not very articulate … [b]orn of the lean loins of the country itself, of the dreams of men who came here … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy | 20 Comments

Battle: an article by Vance Palmer, Meanjin, 1942

I happened upon this yesterday and thought it might be of interest to readers here. THE next few months may decide not only whether we are to survive as a nation, but whether we deserve to survive. As yet none … Continue reading

Posted in History, Literature | 5 Comments

On the Origins and Consequences of Racism

We use a novel method to measure racism at both the individual and the country level. We show that our measure of racism has a strong negative and significant impact on economic development, quality of institutions and education. We then … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, Philosophy, Political theory, Politics - international | 3 Comments