Uncloaking Economic Terrorists: a Slumlord Empire – The common wisdom is that only big business and government use social network analysis. Yet, there are many individuals and groups that are learning the craft, and solving local problems. Although social network analysis can not be learned by reading a book, it does not require a PhD either. Any intelligent person, under the right guidance, and with the proper tools, can apply the methodology to an appropriate problem and gain enormous insight into what was previously hidden.
7 Tips for Writing About Politics (…When You’re Not a Political Writer) – While it’s an exciting time to write about politics, bloggers who ordinarily don’t write about politics can easily be intimidated by just the thought of it. Can I write authoritatively about the subject? Do I know all sides of the issue? What if my readers know more about the subject than I do? What if I don’t have all the facts? There certainly are some risks involved but if you get it right, the potential rewards can range from sparking a heated debate to informing your readers about something important to testing the waters on going a little off the beaten path in the future.
Newspapers and Thinking the Unthinkable « Clay Shirky – The unthinkable scenario unfolded something like this: The ability to share content wouldn’t shrink, it would grow. Walled gardens would prove unpopular. Digital advertising would reduce inefficiencies, and therefore profits. Dislike of micropayments would prevent widespread use. People would resist being educated to act against their own desires. Old habits of advertisers and readers would not transfer online. Even ferocious litigation would be inadequate to constrain massive, sustained law-breaking. (Prohibition redux.) Hardware and software vendors would not regard copyright holders as allies, nor would they regard customers as enemies. DRM’s requirement that the attacker be allowed to decode the content would be an insuperable flaw. And, per Thompson, suing people who love something so much they want to share it would piss them off.
Could Detroit Trigger a New Global Meltdown? – The Daily Beast – A case study from 30 years ago–one with remarkable resonance for the global financial crises of today–suggests bankruptcy is a risk not worth taking.
If you are of a certain age, you remember the headline: “Ford to City: Drop Dead.” It was from the New York Daily News in October of 1975 after President Gerald R. Ford (not the Ford automobile company) gave a speech rejecting New York City’s request for federal loans to avert a default on city debt. Ford’s speech pleased many at home, but the possibility of a default on billions of dollars in debt sent tremors beyond American shores. The overseas reaction was perhaps the first signof financial globalization and its perils, now grimly familiar in the meltdown of 2008.
This is a little bit of a trick question. It really implies three questions: What are the circumstances that make unrest in a population possible or likely? What circumstances need to occur in order to precipitate expressions of unrest in particular places? And what circumstances are conducive to spreading (or damping out) these local expressions?