What’s truly exceptional about our predicament is how the state of exception has escaped the confines of the detention centre and occupied Main Street. For the first time in human history, the entire world is in a universal state of exception for exactly the same reason.
If nations were programming languages, what language would they be?
We need an account of the redistribution – and decentralization – of power that’s commensurate with a multi-scale idea of citizenship, one that adapts to the hyper local as well as it does to the planetary.
The COVID crisis is a layer on top of a turn towards authoritarianism coming out of the 2008 economic crisis. At the same time, new opportunities for national and global solidarity are emerging. What might those solidarities look like?
In Buddhism, skillful means train adepts to act and respond creatively in a context. Replacing the religious concerns of Buddhism with the secular concerns of collective existence – can we be trained to be skillful in how we approach public problems?
Crisis needs community, or as the old saying goes: we hang together or we’ll surely hang separately. Whether it’s a viral epidemic or climate change, the quality of our response to a societal crisis depends on the strength and depth of our communities: their capacity for compassion, for adaptive leadership and the resources they bring to the problem.
A couple of days ago, the UN released a report saying the COVID19 crisis is the worst crisis the world has faced since World War II. Now more people will be willing to listen to alternatives to the entire system, not just one piece of it.
The ongoing pandemic is an example of a planetary failure, i.e., the simultaneous failure of social and technical systems across the world. It’s the new normal. Just this past year alone we have had worries about climate change induced fires and floods in both hemispheres, now we have a pandemic.