This week, Joe Biden tweeted about what it means to be middle class. Of course, with all the news swirling around Biden and President Trump recently, you might have glossed over it. But the ratio it received—nearly 4,500 comments to more than 2,400 retweets, at the time of writing—told a different story. “Being middle class isn’t a number,” the tweet read. “It’s a value set.” This didn’t ring true to many people who voiced their frustrations on Twitter. “No, Joe, middle class is not about a set of values,” writer Roxane Gay wrote in response. “That’s what people who are only concerned with one demographic say. This is really frustrating and myopic.” Several research institutes make the case that financial standing alone doesn’t define the middle class, but there are numbers attached to the demographic; in 2016, the Pew Research Center found that middle-income families—in a … [Read more...] about What politicians get wrong about the middle class
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Likeability, relatability, humor, wit, charm, good looks, and a little disregard for convention have always helped candidates win elections. Policy positions, character, and experience in government help, too. But lately, the personality characteristics associated with charisma are seemingly more important to voters than a candidate’s experience or stance on issues. Right now, in the run-up to the 2020 election, Democratic voters are very focused on electability. Charisma is a crucial consideration in discussions about who can beat Donald Trump. The problem is, focusing on charisma is a terrible idea. Charisma matters now more than ever for two reasons. First, politicians are now packaging themselves as Instagram-ready personal brands. And second, people in more individualistic cultures value leaders’ charisma more, and America is becoming increasingly individualistic. This means that charisma, rather than performance, may play an increasing role in how leaders are … [Read more...] about It’s time to stop talking about politicians’ charisma
opinion Bankole Thompson Published 11:00 PM EDT May 26, 2019 Six years ago, at a national leadership breakfast at Bolling Air Force Base in Washington, D.C., to mark the 50th anniversary of the “March on Washington for Jobs and Justice,” the audience was treated to a moving conversation led by civil rights hero C.T. Vivian, who recounted his story of growing up in a nation that once looked down on him. What struck me the most as I listened to Vivian open up about his remarkable barrier-breaking life to a room full of dignitaries was the influence his grandmother, Annie Woods, Tindell had on him. She gave him a book, “The Black Man: His Antecedents, His Genius and His Achievements,” written by William Wells Brown and published in 1863, two years before the abolition of slavery. Vivian in his sagely voice eloquently explained that the book examined the lives of a select group of men, who rose to prominence and positively influenced … [Read more...] about Bankole: Kwame Kenyatta made his mark on Detroit
Kalinga politicians woo voters with foodstuffTABUK CITY: Several residents of this city have taken to social media their experiences, slamming the practice of local politicians to court voters with foodstuff, including rice, culled chicken and groceries, kitchenware and other small household items. Retired Episcopal prime bishop Renato Abibico shared on his Facebook post on May 6 photos of himself holding two small plastic bags with caption informing he just received “some soap, salt, sugar, noodles, vinegar and soy sauce.” In another post, Abibico chided the candidates for their very low regard for voters as manifested in the little and cheap groceries they try to buy votes with. “How to beat vote-buying? Get what they give and vote according to the dictate of your conscience. There is no truth in the ‘butot’ threat. They will not know if you will vote for them or not. Let’s teach this vote-buying politicians a lesson,” he urged voters in one … [Read more...] about Kalinga politicians woo voters with foodstuff
A third of voters would rather AI ran the country than politicians – so should robots move into Downing Street? Takashi Sonoda, chief executive of internet of things company Uhuru, says YES. The idea that an artificial intelligence (AI) device could wholly take over the decision making at the top of the British government is pure dystopian sci-fi, from a technical standpoint as well as a democratic one. That said, Downing Street, like other public and private institutions, should seek to use and adopt machine-learning algorithms as well as other new technologies to help with the governing of the country. The advantages are that decision making – a cornerstone of governance – becomes more accurate and quicker, while fewer resources (which, let’s not forget, are funded by taxpayers) are used. The embrace of AI and the internet of things (IoT) is already underway in the private sector, and the forthcoming 5G roll-out will enhance its effects. Downing Street should … [Read more...] about DEBATE: A third of voters would rather AI ran the country than politicians – so should robots move into Downing Street?