notes march 2 2009
March 2, 2009 § Leave a comment
In the beginning, when the cities and commerce were new this re-creation of authoritarian hierarchies was not at all obvious. The point is that the democratic and republican impulses from the renaissance until today depended upon a very rich mix of institutions in partial balance with each other. Democracy is in danger of having been a mere phase as the institutional nexus draws tighter in a larger history whose “phase shifts” are more obvious now. The republic – the public thing – res publica – is being privatized.
It is not necessary to look at history, but I think it strengthens us by understanding what a house of cards our legal institutions are built on. Part of an understanding of human nature in relation to society comprehends how a house of cards is the only way to build a society. Our current legal system is the articulation of ideas coming out of human experience which come out of the biological body and its relationship to its circumstances. So I’m not arguing that because it is a house of cards the trick should come down. I am arguing that there is no other way and that we need to think what kind of house of cards we want, what kinds of relationships and laws and regulations. “Law”, despite its confusion with things like “laws of physics”, is articulated out of mere experience in the process of history, and does not rest on any bedrock outside of that experience. The slippery slope from the hard fact of nature to the articulation of human law passes through the dominant institutional interests of each era.
from GardenWorld Politics
“Globalization”mostly refers to finance and control not to spreading quality of life.
and, very attuned to GardenWorld,
By Joseph Stiglitz and Nicholas
Published: March 2 2009 19:16 | Last updated: March 2 2009 19:16
We face two crises: a deep global financial crisis, caused by inadequate management of risk in the financial sector; and an even deeper climate crisis, the effects of which may seem more distant but will be determined by the actions we take now.
The scale of risk from climate change is altogether of a different and greater magnitude, as are the consequences of mismanaging or ignoring it. The US, in particular, has a window of opportunity to act on the financial crisis and, at the same time, lay the foundations for a new wave of growth based on the technologies for a low-carbon economy.