war may be a recent development
“war is the continuation of politics by other means”
The End of War — John Horgan’s Thesis
o war is declining
o democratic countries cannot fight each other (one of the
strongest points), increasing # of democracies
o war is not deep in our nature— “bad cultural meme”, a
bad idea that caught on
o genetically conditioned to engage in war?
psychologically, we are capable of being peaceful or not
WHAT IS POLITICS?
elections: citizens choose their leaders
demonstrations: protests, eg. Tea Party against Obama
policy decisions: about the environment, about health, education,
etc. eg. to what extent should we be promoting global
conservation?, how much should we be spending on health care?
Politics matter because they affect you. Laws assign rights and duties,
and these rules are enforced by penalties.
Haiti vs. Dominican Republic
different environmental conditions— DR produces 7x more GDP
consequences of what? some say culture, some say geographic
location. consequences of decisions made by institutions.
Some Meanings of Politics
Formal Government Activity, eg. discussions between parliament
dishonestly seeking personal gain (used colloquially: “it’s all
noble pursuit of the public good
who gets what, when, and how?
Primates: humans, apes, monkeys… If politics = who gets what, when,
and how? Then… Chimpanzee Politics:
concerned with power
potential for conflict can lead to alliances or wars
there are winners and losers (alpha male vs. beta male)
gentle and loving
erotic and egalitarian; sensitive to others
conciliatory rather than aggressive
in 2008, shown to hunt and eat other monkeys (but likely due
to environmental issues)
We are as closely related to the Chimp as we are to the Bonobo.
The Elements of Politics (Meaning of Politics by Jones)
a social activity or process in which groups with conflicting interests
reach binding decisions concerning what to do, and then those
decisions are enforced on those who do not cooperate
between love and war
pure conflict = war
pure cooperate = true love
politics = conflict and cooperation (l