Friday, March 19, 2004

Intent to Publish 

Here's what you can expect to see on The Bonassus over the next few weeks:

Iraq's new constitution There has been quite a bit of speculation over the past months about what Iraq's new constitution will look like. In particular, the questions of federalism and centralization of power have been discussed on editorial pages, in popular news magazines , in policy journals and in academic roundtables. But a lot of the expertise on constitutional engineering that political scientists have tried to establish in the past few decades has somehow stayed off the radar screen. In a series of brief articles I'll present some of the choices Iraq's constitution's framers have had to make (or ignore) and present the state of the art on the consequences of these decisions.

A Third Party in America? I'll also take a look at why the political system in the U.S. renders the idea of a constructive role for the Green Party a pipe dream, and discuss the likely consequences of various reform proposals that Greenies (and others) hope will remedy this situation. Trust me, folks, it ain't pretty.

Trade, Aid and Private Giving Finally, (and this will likely take up the bulk of the postings on this site for some time to come), I'll address the question of how both we as individuals and the countries we live in can address the question of helping those less fortunate than ourselves. I'll review the resources available to everyday people to help get the most bang for your charitable buck, take a look at where to make donations to political causes to maximize your chance of making a difference, and review various national policy approaches to the international economy to help clarify what role trade and aid have in reducing poverty over the long term.

Well, this is all pretty ambitious. My plan is to post at least weekly on these topics, with smaller, simpler posts in between. I won't bother to start publicizing any of this at all until I've actually started to generate some interesting material, which is possibly a stupid approach, but that's my plan.

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