Saturday, November 04, 2006

Theme Suggestions

According to the current plan, mid-monthly editions of the carnival will invite entries on a particular issue or "theme", for purposes of focusing the discussion. They should be significant and controversial issues of general interest. Examples might include terrorism and civil liberties, Iraq, abortion, church and state, welfare reform, markets and regulation, media and democracy, crime and punishment, etc.

Any other suggestions? Feel free to add your own two cents (on these or other possibilities) below...


Anonymous Timothy Scriven said...

A first edition that could really capture the spirt of the carnival could be everyone describes an issue or idea about which they deviate from their party line. Mine could be judical originalism, which ( unusually for a leftist) I support. Other examples might be right wingers who don't want to cut taxes if it means borrowing, left wingers who really don't like identity politics etc.

12:24 PM  
Blogger GreenSmile said...

My reaction to the premise of this carnival is relief and delight: this is a nice idea for a carnival, hope it flies. flamewars and cocooning are such a waste of the potential of the net to make better citizens and better civilization.

But we have some research and reasonably sober commentary to the effect that trying to get groups with different positions on an issue to discuss their differences has an undesirable effect: they dig in and may even move farther apart.

One topic then would be an examination of that phenomenon: do we buy the research? do we know exceptions? do any of us think we have a way to avoid the effect, presuming it is real, or at least an understanding of what preconditions of such attempted debates doom conciliation?

Another topic which is a personal quest of mine: there is unnecessary rancor between the faithful and the athiests among progressives [for instance] who otherwise share many political and social objectives. I have my own suggestions for tackling this problem but I'd love to hear what others may have thought about the problem.

1:40 AM  

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