Category: The Explainer ANC

The Explainer: December 26

Tweet That was a scene from the movie, Patton, in which George C. Scott as Patton expresses the warrior’s attitude towards killing: the more efficiently you did, the less remorseful you had to be. But this is the season of the Prince of Peace, and so, it is a time when all political sides lay …

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The Explainer: The power of public opinion

Tweet That was a scene from the film, “Marie Antoinette” where the beginning of the end of the Bourbon dynasty began with citizens who dared to march on the royal palace of Versailles. History is replete with the powerful trembling before the force of public opinion. Over the past week, the power of public opinion …

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The Explainer: Other people’s lives in print

Tweet That was a scene from the movie “Quills” where Napoleon, before the era of libel suits, proposed a bullet as a solution for a troubling author. But an adviser says there are other ways to deal with irritating authors like the Marquis de Sade. Not all of us may read the lives of people, …

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The Explainer: Automated elections and solutions that might work

Tweet That was a scene from the HBO documentary, “Hacking democracy.” California officials discuss how the integrity of companies involved in automation, matters as much as the law. Because of your interest in last week’s episode, we’re going to discuss automating elections some more tonight. This time, having identified the problem, let’s take a look …

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The Explainer: Modernizing elections

Tweet That was a scene from the HBO documentary, “Hacking democracy” where Howard Dean’s shown how election results can be altered by making use of security flaws in counting software. After the Bush versus Gore election, Americans vowed they’d modernize their machines. In this year’s midterms, the new, modernized machines have become mired in controversy. …

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The Explainer: Survey Says

Tweet That was a scene from “The Last Hurrah,” based on one of the most famous political novels of all time. Spencer Tracey asks his flunkies for political intelligence. Today of course, politicians and voters alike prefer a more scientific crystal ball: surveys. What surveys are and how they work, is our task for tonight. …

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The Explainer: Plebiscitary Democracy

Tweet That was from Part I of “Hitler: The Rise of Evil,” where we see Hitler making a mockery of the courts. We’ve been hearing a lot about proposals for plebiscites, yet we forget how plebiscite can be tools for tyranny. What’s our own nation’s experience with plebiscites? And what inspired those plebiscites in the …

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The Explainer: Embalming

Tweet I’m Manolo Quezon. The Explainer.   I. Is that you, Mummy?   You can, salt it, turn it into a jam, pickle it, dehydrate it, or even freeze it: if it’s edible, chances are, it can be preserved for future enjoyment. Now I don’t want to ruin your dinner, but in a few days …

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The Explainer: National Capital

Tweet I. Imperial Manila   IN America, the founding fathers couldn’t decide on a national capital, and the decision threatened to break apart the brand-new republic. In exasperation, even desperation, the competing sides decided they would have their president, George Washington, make the decision. Washington decided on a place near his plantation home. The new …

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The Explainer: North Korea

Tweet That was a scene from Team America: World Police, a tongue-in-cheek look at the War on Terror told with marionettes. Since North Korea claimed to explode an atom bomb on, the world has been frantically figuring out what should be done. President Arroyo in a cabinet meeting rather hysterically said nuclear missiles could rain …

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The Explainer: National Security State

Tweet We often hear the term “national security.” I don’t think many of us knows what it means. We may associate it with Americans and their government, but the doctrine of national security is an American legacy warmly embraced by our home-grown officials. So what’s national security? It’s a powerful idea. What that idea is, …

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The Explainer: Competitiveness as a nation

Tweet That was a scene from “Bridge On the River Kwai.” The Japanese commandant’s speech may have been to the British prisoners of war, but any worker, anywhere, some time or another has had a boss make a similar speech. We all want to work, and we all hope we don’t end up working for …

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