Category Archives: History

Elections are all about competition right? (They weren’t way back when)

As part of my recent fascination with competitive and ‘de-competitive’ merit selection, I’ve been looking at the origins of both parliamentary and presidential elections. Intriguingly though we now associate elections with competition between candidates, in both the British parliamentary system … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, History, Sortition and citizens’ juries | 5 Comments

Economic Ideas and Policy Outcomes: Ross Garnaut’s Gruen Lecture

Below is Ross Garnaut’s lecture in honour of my Dad. Economic Ideas and Policy Outcomes: Applications to Climate and Energy Fred Gruen signed up as Professor of Economics in the ANU’s Research School of Social Sciences in 1972, at the … Continue reading

Posted in Economics and public policy, History, Libertarian Musings, Philosophy, Political theory, Social Policy | 3 Comments

An Alt-left?

I What is it with James Burnham? I associate him — via Curtis Yarvin — with the alt-right. And Burnham is the founding text of what I call the Alt-centre (of which I am the founder and which I’m hoping … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, History, Political theory, Sortition and citizens’ juries | Leave a comment

Include and compromise — don’t divide and conquer: Tendrils of Hope from Australia.

I really enjoyed this conversation with my friend Peyton Bowman which celebrates the possibility that Australia might be able to show the world how to push back against the Trumpian madness. We tried to turn Peyton’s lack of inside knowledge … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Democracy, History, Politics - national, Public and Private Goods, Sortition and citizens’ juries | Leave a comment

If we tolerate this, our children will be next … Guest post by Dennis Glover

Question: Given that history repeats, what year is this? Fifteen months ago, when Donald Trump’s rag-tag militias stormed the Capitol building in Washington D.C., I thought for a moment we might be living in 1923, witnessing the rebirth of western … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, History, Political theory, Politics - international, Terror | 8 Comments

How Zelenskyy sent courage viral: the podcast

Another great discussion with my friend Peyton Bowman. We began with a passage from William James on faith. Though the essay does discuss religious faith, I quoted it because it starts more mundanely, speaking of the way faith makes community life possible by … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, History, Politics - international | 1 Comment

Geoff Harcourt: RIP

As many readers will know, Geoff Harcourt one of Australia’s distinguished economists died recently aged 90. Geoff was a good friend of my father’s who occasionally stayed at our farm where he took off before breakfast every morning to run … Continue reading

Posted in Economics and public policy, History | 4 Comments