Benjamin Studebaker

Yet Another Attempt to Make the World a Better Place by Writing Things

Tag: Crisis

National Self-Determination is Overrated

I have a new piece out for Current Affairs about the importance of political unions in the 21st century. Here’s the link:

https://www.currentaffairs.org/2017/11/national-self-determination-is-overrated

The original title was “In Praise of Unionism: What the European Left Can Learn From America,” but we souped it up a bit. It’s a bit longer and more comprehensive than the stuff I usually do here. The folks at CA are delightful to work with. They’re putting out some really terrific long-form pieces that dig into things more deeply than a lot of what we see on the web these days.

How Similar are Trump and Caesar?

Many of President Trump’s supporters are aggrieved about a New York production of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar which features a Caesar that looks rather Trump-like. This has produced some discussion of how far this comparison should really go, and whether having a Trump-like Caesar encourages political violence. Much of the arguments surrounding this are a bit muddled because many folks only have a surface-level understanding of Caesar’s historical role. So let’s unpack it.

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Debt Ceiling Warz Episode II

Once more republicans in congress are planning to fight over the debt ceiling, refusing to raise it unless the president defunds health reform. Barack Obama insists that the debt ceiling is “not a bargaining chip”. Health reform is the primary lasting legislative achievement of his administration, and he insists he will not abandon it. The trouble is that Tea Party republicans don’t believe his threat to starve them out is credible. Why is that? That’s the topic of today’s post.

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