Month: March 2014

A Developmental Perspective on International Politics

Interesting title, right? Well bear with me while I extrapolate. Let’s begin by observing children in a sandbox. Here we have three little children arriving at a sandbox filled with buckets and shovels and strainers and assorted other inviting toys. We watch as the children are drawn to certain toys and begin to shovel and shift and mold the sand around them. At first the children are happy with their own toys and their own section of sand; for the sake of our little analogy let’s call it their ‘territory.’ After a few minutes one of the children decides that another child’s bucket is more desirable. The child grabs for the toy insisting that “It’s Mine!” Again, for the sake of the analogy, let’s assign a masculine gender to this child, as stereotypically boys are reputed to be the more aggressive in our species. The defending child, let’s say, for the same of argument, this is a girl, tugs at her bucket claiming “It’s Mine!” The first child pulls harder and repeats “It’s Mine!” They play tug for a while with loud screams and claims of possession. The third child watches for a while and does nothing. The bucket defender screams that she had it first and therefore it belongs to her. The interloper claims he wants it and pulls even harder. She says again that it belongs to her. The trespasser says he played with it before and therefore it’s his. Thus he claims historic possession and therefore an incontrovertible claim to ownership. The girl refuses to be swayed by this logic and holds on for dear life. The boy decides to up the ante, grabs a plastic shovel and begins to hit the girl. The girl screams for help. The parents, who have been ignoring this dispute thinking the children needed to work it out themselves, rush to the scene of the dispute. They comfort the girl and reprimand the boy for hitting the girl. They try to figure out exactly who did what to whom and what actually ‘belongs’ to whom but are unable to do so. They ask the third child what happened but the child remains mute and refuses to take sides, for the sake of our little analogy, let’s call him Switzerland.



The Psychological And Sociological Implications Of The Digital Revolution!

I’m not opposed to change! Well, let’s say I’m not opposed to most change. Moreover I should say I think it’s important to consider the long range implications of changes and consider how they might impact our social structures and what we as a society of human beings are going to cope with, modify or ameliorate the unintended results of those changes. Take for example, the advent of the smartphone. We submerge ourselves in the details of our cell phone plans, count our minutes and review the pros and cons of our contract’s small print; we obsess over getting the best WIFI connections that will allow instant access to our bank accounts, emails and navigate us from place to place. We focus on buying the newest models, cover designs and multi-device charging stations; we invent and re-invent tiny keyboards in order to perform a multitude of texting options so we can stay in constant contact with each other about the most mundane and innocuous of matters.