Making Government Suck Less (article at @techcrunch)

Interesting read from a US politician on the use of the Internet in changing government. Estonia gets a mention, as does the US Techcrunch subsite, CrunchGov. America is built on the principle that government at every level should be of the people, by the people and for the people. When elected leaders or career bureaucrats […]

A bit of love for the Living Voters Guide (Washington state)

Via the DO-Wire mailing list, I came across a great little site set up to help voters discuss and learn about the ballot initiatives in the 2011 elections in Washington state. You can take a look here: Your guide to the 2011 Washington Election – The Living Voters Guide. I particularly liked the Wrangl-like “Yes/no” […]

Election year, not just in the US

According to Foreign Policy, in 2012: A third of the world’s nations will be holding local, state, or national elections; a number of Arab Spring countries will be putting their democratic aspirations into action; and four out of the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council — the United States, Russia, China and France […]

Oh for a democratic dictatorship

There’s a slightly odd article by Francis Fukuyama in today’s FT.  His argument is that the checks and balances in the US constitution have hardened (under pressure from more ideological politics) into a situation where nothing can be done due to the presence of unbreakable and increasingly common vetoes like the filibuster rule. Fukuyama compares […]

Uncharted waters

I tweeted about this Robert Gates speech (as reported in the LA Times) earlier in the week, but it’s still worth a read. Gates (who was defence secretary under Bush then kept on by Obama) worries about the state of the US political system in ways that sound quite familiar to Brits. Indiviudally, paragraphs like that below […]

Lunchtime list for June 9th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: Heffer on the EU: Nostradamus he ain’t – One of our own pieces on a hysterical prediction of the future by Simon Heffer, written in 2003. Find out about the gangs of armed EU police who will be roaming the streets attacking […]

Heffer on the EU: Nostradamus he ain’t

It’s always enjoyable to come across a hysterical prophecy that has been disproved by the passage of time. How much more enjoyable it is when the author is as self-righteous and opinionated as Simon Heffer. The prophecy in question comes from the Daily Mail in 2003. In an article entitled without irony, Europe: Who’s telling […]

Lunchtime list for June 2nd

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: Affluent communities cast wider social net – Research from Cornell University shows affluent communities tend to have residents who interact with a diverse group of people while people living in less-advantaged communities only talk within their own neighborhoods. THE REALITIES AND RELEVANCE […]

Lunchtime list for May 28th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: BP Decisions Made Well Vulnerable – The Wall Street Journal considers the background to the Deepwater Horizon oil leak, and how BP's bad decisions under pressure led to the disaster Devolution in Practice 2010 – IPPR have a new study on devolution, […]

Lunchtime list for May 26th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: The collapse of the euro would open the door to democracy – Lots of euro stuff recently, much from a technical perspective, so here's a counterbalance in a traditional UK-Eurosceptic article from Simon Heffer. His thesis: that the end of the Euro, […]