And how to have more meaningful conversations

There are so many different ways to live life, each with its own set of trade-offs. It’s what makes humans fascinating and why it’s worthwhile having exposure to people of different backgrounds. Not all ways of life are compatible, though, and this can create tension that we find difficult to process. This can be true on an individual or societal level. Because most people seek harmonious lives, we sometimes avoid conflict because it’s stressful and unpleasant. We falsely equate harmony with an absence of disagreement. …

And why we’re disincentivized from staying informed

There’s an unspoken rule that it’s impolite to talk about politics, money or religion. Even until recently, I struggled to keep that advice, although my discussions were mostly limited to friends and family. Lately, however, I’ve been writing a series of articles on the current political climate and the philosophies that underpin contemporary movements. I’ve subsequently wondered whether such a public display of my views makes me especially impolite.

The more I try to inform myself, the more I agree that maybe we would be better off keeping politics to ourselves. I cannot wrap my head around some of the…

Why cost-efficiency and compassion are not mutually exclusive

On my mission for political compromise, I’ve previously suggested that we have many misconceptions, made worse by media bias to the point where we can’t even agree on basic facts. My ultimate goal is to encourage more productive conversations. In my mostly liberal circles, in times where even a moderate stance can be the dissenting opinion, I believe conservative viewpoints are the ones that need exploring. But I’m not just playing devil’s advocate — I genuinely do not believe, for example, that conservative economics is fundamentally selfish. …

How Modernism and Postmodernism shape our political discussions


Cognitive dissonance in modern politics

I think I’m a good person. At least I used to think so. I’m bombarded with messaging that if I don’t agree with a certain viewpoint I must be a monster. Taking the issues in isolation, I can understand how that would be the case. But here’s the thing: In order to care about the environment, inequality, racism, the pursuit of happiness, and individual freedoms, I have to believe a wide set of contradictions. They tend to play out like this:

  • Authoritarianism is bad but causes I believe in should be implemented top-down.
  • Depending on the current “Establishment,” activists challenging…

So you should definitely read this.

Source: Freepik

Personality and politics

Most reasonable people agree that we need change and that healthy societies evolve. Most reasonable people also agree that certain traditions and a framework of rules to ensure fairness and stability are equally important. We know that certain personality traits predict political attitudes. For example, openness correlates with liberalism and conscientiousness predicts conservativism. Note that I’m not saying only liberals are open-minded and only conservatives are reliable, but that certain personality traits can predict political preferences.

Both openness and conscientiousness are essential and both are fundamentally rooted in compassion. We want to be inclusive and we want people to be…

I have a confession: I don’t feel particularly uplifted or hopeful.

As of publishing this article, Biden is projected to win but there’s still no clear result. International perception of America tends to be more stable under Democratic presidents, which would be a welcome relief. But regardless of the result I have many serious concerns about the political state of America that have trickled into every day interactions and discussions. In light of so many people being shocked about Trump’s turnout, and to prepare for the inevitable conversations that will follow in the coming months, I feel compelled to speak up.

Our family immigrated to the US from Hungary in…

Dora Donaldson

Fascinated by human behavior and decision making

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