Cultural

The Logic of Conflict and Hatred

Conflict is the failure of strategy. Good strategy creates positions that are difficult to attack and are easy to advance. People who do not understand strategy are those who want to fight and beat their enemies. The conflict mindset is expensive in a number of ways. The most devastating is how it undermines your position rather than building it up.

New Wedge Issues

Strategiclaly, the most interesting places are always the new, unexplored territories. People's get set in their thinking in frozen in their position because the fail to see beyond existing battle lines. The whole purpose of the strategic process of "listen, aim, move, claim" is to recognize and explore new areas as they open up.

Sacrificing People for Causes

Strategy teaches you to look constantly for deception. What is visible is never as dangerous as what is hidden. For example, tyranny has killing millions of more people through starvation than through war. Starvation is the preferred method of tyrants maintaining their power because it is inexpensive and, just as importantly, because it can be hidden or disguised as something else rather than the abuse of power.

Only Transparent Democracies Can Govern

Strategy teaches that all power is based on the use of information. Sun Tzu's revelation was that information, not physical force, was the source of all power. What happens to the world where the average person gets increasing access to the free flow of information? We are seeing the answer in China. This article begins:
China’s rulers face an ongoing crisis of legitimacy. There is abundant evidence that very substantial discontent exists among its population.
It ends:

Philosophy, the Environment, and Conspiracies

In thinking about this earlier post on philosophy being the core of every strategy position, it occurs to me that the sudden popularity of conspiracy theories in literature (first, the Da Vinci Code and now, The Traveler - no links provided because I hate conspiracy theories) may well arise because people are looking for meaning in the world in the absence of religious faith. The general line of thinking is that, if God doesn't control the world, someone must, therefore there must be shadowy groups operating in the background.

Positions of Slow-Motion Suicide

Lately I have been corresponding with a reader who thinks that the Muslim birthrate is the real issue in the War on Terror because of Europe's declining birthrate. I don't agree because Muslims will be welcome immigrants only as long as they don't support terror. Europe will find willing workers from Asia, especially India, and Latin America and stop Muslim immigration if they perceive Muslims as a threat.

Unity, not Size Is the Source of Strength

The recent breakup of America's largest union demostrates a fundemental idea in strategy: that unity is the source of strength and that unity falls apart after repeated failure. Of course, the decline of labor unions has been going on for a long time, since the beginning of the eighties when, interestingly enough, unionization started forcusing on the public sector (see chart).

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