Author Archives: Larry Liu

Schwarzenegger vs. Trump: A Styrian Oak Resisting The Donald

The big news of the week was that James Robart, a Washington federal judge, lifted the travel ban for seven Muslim countries, whose nationals are now allowed to re-enter the US with their visa and green cards. It was a … Continue reading

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Donald Trump Is Neither a Kantian Nor a Normal Politician

The title of the post may be really obvious to many observers of daily political life in America, but it is still worthwhile to flesh out how the election of Trump ushers in an era of illiberal democracy (Zakaria 1997), … Continue reading

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Review of Rodriguez-Franco: Internal Wars, Taxation and State Building

Rodríguez-Franco, Diana. “Internal Wars, Taxation, and State Building.” American Sociological Review (2016), Vol.81 (1): 190-213. I found a fantastic case study of internal wars resulting in state-building in Colombia. The author claims that a patriotic desire and fear for their … Continue reading

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The Executive Reign of Terror

Critics of the imperial presidency are having their heyday. They would warn against the rule-making by fiat of a single powerful president. To some extent, the great presidential power might have been made necessary by the ineptitude of US Congress … Continue reading

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The Politics of Populism: Technology and Inequality

The politics of populism is what marks the contemporary political period. In every single election, where the working class is given the opportunity to punish the establishment with a vote that goes against the ruling view, it happens. Brexit, Trump, … Continue reading

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(Not) Draining the Swamp

Donald Trump had promised his voters that he would drain the swamp, which means that he would ensure that lobbyists and other special interests would not prevail in his administration and that he would place the interests of the whole … Continue reading

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Consumption as a Curse

In a recent video, I argued that economic growth is not always beneficial, because rising economic growth is associated with rising inequality, spiritual unhappiness via the Keeping-up-with-the-Joneses syndrome, and because the environmental effects of endless economic growth are becoming less and … Continue reading

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