Creating history: how to succeed in the future of politics

Last time on Soft-Core Sophistry, we talked about Brendan Eich stepping down as the CEO of Mozilla two weeks after being appointed to the position, due to pressure from the internet concerning his 2008 donation in support of California’s Proposition 8.

Today we follow up that story with lessons we can learn about what the future holds.

And then we’ll see if there’s a way we can profit from it. Continue reading

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No half measures

For years now, people have tried to affect change in the world without doing much of anything, such as changing their Facebook profile picture to bring awareness to child abuse, or posting videos of Joseph Kony to bring awareness to the terrors he has inflicted.

This “slacktivism” has done little except make the person feel good about their action, which can lead to less actual positive contributions later.[1]

But now slacktivists have caught their white whale: they forced Mozilla co-founder Brendan Eich to step down as CEO. Continue reading

How to deal with sudden success

Sometimes you work at a small endeavor–perhaps it’s just a hobby–that is not widely seen or known. Then sometimes, that blows up and makes you hugely successful.

Dealing with that sudden success can be a difficult process. This how-to guide (which is based on widely acknowledged principles and not at all to my own initial reactions to this blog suddenly reaching a wider audience) will teach you to handle that new-found success.

For the purposes of this exercise, let’s pick a random scenario that could lead to this kind of guide being necessary. Let’s say you write for a little-known blog with a very small audience that’s been growing quite modestly, and yesterday it gets featured on Freshly Pressed, where editors of your blog’s platform promote posts they like, which causes your readership to grow by leaps and bounds.

I know, it’s a far-fetched idea that would likely never happen, but let’s go with it. Continue reading

Government privilege

Let’s talk about privilege.

If you believe Tumblr,[1] there are many different kinds of privilege, each more serious than the last.[2] There’s white privilege, male privilege, adult privilege, dyadic privilege… all kinds of privilege!

We’re not going to talk about any of those. We’re going to talk about actual privilege, which, by definition, is what people are and aren’t allowed to do. Continue reading