Description : Americans have long recognized the central importance of the nineteenth-century Republican party in preserving the Union, ending slavery, and opening the way for industrial capitalism. On the surface, the story seems straightforward -- the party's “free labor” ethos, embracing the opportunity that free soil presented for social and economic mobility, and condemning the danger that slavery in the territories posed for that mobility, foreshadowed the GOP's later devotion to unfettered enterprise and industrial capitalism. In reality, however, the narrative thread is not so linear. This work examines the contradiction that lay at the heart of the supremely influential ideology of the early Republican party. The Paradox of Progress explores one of the most profound changes in American history -- the transition from the anti-market, anti-monopoly, and democratic ideology of Jacksonian America to the business-dominated politics and unregulated excesses of Gilded Age capitalism. Guiding this transformation was the nineteenth-century Republican party. Drawing heavily from both the pro-market commitments of the early Whig party and the anti-capitalist culture of Jackson's Democratic party, the early Republican party found itself torn between these competing values. Nowhere was this contested process more obvious or more absorbing than in Civil War-era Michigan, the birthplace of the Republican party. In The Paradox of Progress, a fascinating look at the central factors underlying the history of the GOP, Martin Hershock reveals how in their determination to resolve their ideological dilemma, Republicans of the Civil War era struggled to contrive a formula that wo uld enable them to win popular elections and to model America's acceptance of Gilded Age capitalism.
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Description : This edition of Global Trends revolves around a core argument about how the changing nature of power is increasing stress both within countries and between countries, and bearing on vexing transnational issues. The main section lays out the key trends, explores their implications, and offers up three scenarios to help readers imagine how different choices and developments could play out in very different ways over the next several decades. Two annexes lay out more detail. The first lays out five-year forecasts for each region of the world. The second provides more context on the key global trends in train.
Description : Rekindles the spirit that some have lost and explores the problem retaining respect for human values in an increasingly systemized world.
Description : Why the news about the global decline of infectious diseases is not all good. Plagues and parasites have played a central role in world affairs, shaping the evolution of the modern state, the growth of cities, and the disparate fortunes of national economies. This book tells that story, but it is not about the resurgence of pestilence. It is the story of its decline. For the first time in recorded history, virus, bacteria, and other infectious diseases are not the leading cause of death or disability in any region of the world. People are living longer, and fewer mothers are giving birth to many children in the hopes that some might survive. And yet, the news is not all good. Recent reductions in infectious disease have not been accompanied by the same improvements in income, job opportunities, and governance that occurred with these changes in wealthier countries decades ago. There have also been unintended consequences. In this book, Thomas Bollyky explores the paradox in our fight against infectious disease: the world is getting healthier in ways that should make us worry. Bollyky interweaves a grand historical narrative about the rise and fall of plagues in human societies with contemporary case studies of the consequences. Bollyky visits Dhaka—one of the most densely populated places on the planet—to show how low-cost health tools helped enable the phenomenon of poor world megacities. He visits China and Kenya to illustrate how dramatic declines in plagues have affected national economies. Bollyky traces the role of infectious disease in the migrations from Ireland before the potato famine and to Europe from Africa and elsewhere today. Historic health achievements are remaking a world that is both worrisome and full of opportunities. Whether the peril or promise of that progress prevails, Bollyky explains, depends on what we do next. A Council on Foreign Relations Book
Description : This book aims to shift the limited and often negative popular understanding of the Middle East’s place in the world by chronicling the region’s contributions to the international order rather than disorder, and to the development of the international human rights system. It elucidates the many paradoxes that make the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region both a troubling place and also a region brimming with great potential for peace, prosperity and progress. By demonstrating the paradox of human rights progress amid regress, the book tells a radically new and more hopeful side of the story of the region that has largely been obfuscated and omitted from the chronicles of history. In so doing, it shows that fostering a human rights culture is not only possible for all universally, it is inevitable.
Description : For acclaimed historian William Jelani Cobb, the historic election of Barack Obama to the presidency is not the most remarkable development of the 2008 election; even more so is the fact that Obama won some 90 percent of the black vote in the primaries across America despite the fact that the established black leadership since the civil rights era-men like Jesse Jackson, John Lewis, Andrew Young, who paved the way for his candidacy-all openly supported Hillary Clinton. Clearly a sea change has occurred among black voters, ironically pushing the architects of the civil rights movement toward the periphery at the moment when their political dreams were most fully realized. How this has happened, and the powerful implications it holds for America's politics and social landscape, is the focus of The Substance of Hope, a deeply insightful, paradigm-shifting examination of a new generation of voters that has not been shaped by the raw memory of Jim Crow and has a different range of imperatives. Cobb sees Obama's ascendancy as "a reality that has been taking shape in tiny increments for the past four decades," and examines thorny issues such as the paradox and contradictions embodied in race and patriotism, identity and citizenship; how the civil rights leadership became a political machine; why the term "postracial" is as iniquitous as it is inaccurate; and whether our society has really changed with Obama's election. Elegantly written and powerfully argued, The Substance of Hope challenges conventional wisdom as it offers original insight into America's future.
Description : The story of the Eric Canal is the story of industrial and economic progress between the War of 1812 and the Civil War. The Artificial River reveals the human dimension of the story of the Erie Canal. Carol Sheriff's extensive, innovative archival research shows the varied responses of ordinary people-farmers, businessmen, government officials, tourists, workers-to this major environmental, social, and cultural transformation in the early life of the Republic. Winner of Best Manuscript Award from the New York State Historical Association “The Artificial River is deeply researched, its arguments are both subtle and clear, and it is written with grace and an engagingly light touch. The book merits a wide readership.” —Paul Johnson, The Journal of American History
Description : This edition of Global Trends - issued in early 2017 - revolves around a core argument about how the changing nature of power is increasing stress both within countries and between countries, and bearing on vexing transnational issues. The main section lays out the key trends, explores their implications, and offers up three scenarios to help readers imagine how different choices and developments could play out in very different ways over the next several decades. Two annexes lay out more detail. The first lays out five-year forecasts for each region of the world. The second provides more context on the key global trends in train. Contents: 1. The Future Summarized * 2. The Map of the Future * 3. Trends Transforming the Global Landscape * 4. Near Future: Tensions Are Rising * 5. Three Scenarios for the Distant Future: Islands, Orbits, Communities * 6. What the Scenarios Teach Us: Fostering Opportunities Through Resilience * 7. Annex: The Next Five Years by Region * 8. Annex: Key Global Trends Thinking about the future is vital but hard. Crises keep intruding, making it all but impossible to look beyond daily headlines to what lies over the horizon. In those circumstances, thinking "outside the box," to use the cliche, too often loses out to keeping up with the inbox. That is why every four years the National Intelligence Council (NIC) undertakes a major assessment of the forces and choices shaping the world before us over the next two decades. This version, the sixth in the series, is titled, "Global Trends: The Paradox of Progress," and we are proud of it. It may look like a report, but it is really an invitation, an invitation to discuss, debate and inquire further about how the future could unfold. Certainly, we do not pretend to have the definitive "answer." Long-term thinking is critical to framing strategy. The Global Trends series pushes us to reexamine key assumptions, expectations, and uncertainties about the future. In a very messy and interconnected world, a longer perspective requires us to ask hard questions about which issues and choices will be most consequential in the decades ahead-even if they don't necessarily generate the biggest headlines. A longer view also is essential because issues like terrorism, cyberattacks, biotechnology, and climate change invoke high stakes and will require sustained collaboration to address. Peering into the future can be scary and surely is humbling. Events unfold in complex ways for which our brains are not naturally wired. Economic, political, social, technological, and cultural forces collide in dizzying ways, so we can be led to confuse recent, dramatic events with the more important ones. It is tempting, and usually fair, to assume people act "rationally," but leaders, groups, mobs, and masses can behave very differently-and unexpectedly-under similar circumstances. For instance, we had known for decades how brittle most regimes in the Middle East were, yet some erupted in the Arab Spring in 2011 and others did not. Experience teaches us how much history unfolds through cycles and shifts, and still human nature commonly expects tomorrow to be pretty much like today-which is usually the safest bet on the future until it is not. I always remind myself that between Mr. Reagan's "evil empire" speech and the demise of that empire, the Soviet Union, was only a scant decade, a relatively short time even in a human life.