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– In Love with Facts

The War on Facts

By Alexander Görlach

This year Mr. Trump and Mr. Farage challenged the Western narrative on what is seen as a fact. Time to teach them a lesson.

Celebrating the holidays, Christmas or Hanukkah, one may realize it is a great moment of the year to talk about facts: what are facts? What do facts mean and how do facts convert into relevance for policymaking and our daily life? The biblical tidings are rather wondrous: oil that would only supply the Tempel’s Menorah for one day lasted for eight days. Angels herald the birth of a child out of a virgin’s womb. Clearly the texts of the holy scriptures to our modern ear and mind do not reflect facts in the way we understand them today.

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For a complex democracy

By Daniel Innerarity

The recent rise in populism is caused by movements that inherently ignore other values of democracy. If populist ideas prove to be so acceptable for increasingly broader sectors of the population, it means there are more people who allow themselves to be convinced that democracy is only that.

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Francis, the Populist

By Alexander Görlach

These days, in speaking of the world’s populists, most forget about one very prominent figure amongst them: Pope Francis. Surely, the Pope acts in a way that most liberal coevals may embrace, the same way they cheered for Bernie Sanders? Yet, in the very sense of the word, the supreme pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church also appeals to a certain spectrum of his flock, neglects some others, and leads the nave of Saint Peter during an age of confrontation.

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“Millennial attitudes are open to the international mindset, but they don’t vocalize their beliefs effectively.”

Joseph Nye interviewed by Alexander Görlach and Constantin Weiss

Joseph Nye is one of our time’s leading political scientists. Former Dean of the Harvard Kennedy School, he is known for having developed the theory of neoliberalism with Robert Keohane in their 1977 book Power and Interdependence. He holds the title of University Distinguished Service Professor, and has served on the Clinton and Obama administration.

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Can Angela Merkel really save the West?

By Alexander Görlach

Angela Merkel, The New York Times claims, is the last remaining sane leader in the West. It is she who is now in charge to save the liberal order. Here is what she needs to embrace to be successful in this recovery.

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A bold policy proposal for curbing human trafficking

by Danilo Mandić

The Syrian refugee crisis has strained our moral intuitions about smugglers. On the one hand, refugee rights have been a staple of the postwar social democratic ethos. From the Vatican to Berlin, forced migrants have been proclaimed the test of European humanism. Even governments with the most egregious migrant policies (at least nominally) uphold refugee rights as human rights. The principles of non-refoulment, freedom of movement, and the right to liberty and safety within refuge countries, continue to be binding. With all its faults, the EU-Turkey deal purports to be in the interests of those fleeing the Syrian civil war.

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“The Internet and the applications arising from it have created the potential for a kind of echo chamber”

Alexander Görlach Speaking with one of the “fathers of the internet”, Vint Cerf gives insights on what he believes will be the repercussions on the Silicon Valley after the election of Donald Trump.

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Pretending Hillary’s defeat was about neo-liberalism, rather than misogyny, provides wrong lessons

By Thomas Weber

As the shock at Donald Trump’s victory amongst Democrats has turned into post-electoral soul-searching, both Naomi Wolf and Naomi Klein declared that Hillary Clinton’s loss was “not a gender defeat”. For the heroines of the Occupy Movement, Clinton lost because she is Hillary of Wall Street. Theirs is a bizarre argument. It is a classic case in which ideology trumps reason and fact-based analysis.

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Don’t Dance on the Grave of Liberalism

By Martin Eiermann

The great achievement of liberalism has been the conceptual severing of ties between values and institutions: We do not have to believe in free speech to enjoy freedom of speech. We can rail against the excesses of the welfare state without being denied social security. We can question the basic legitimacy of the state even as we huddle under its mantle.

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