Articles & blogs on long read articles

Category: long read articles

Private Gain, Public Loss

“The project of selling state or public assets to be owned or run by private businesses has always been controversial. What characterises the controversy, though, is that both advocates and opponents tend to cast it in instrumental terms. That is, the identity of the body or entity doesn’t matter in and of itself; what matters is whether or not they achieve a good outcome or do a better job. […] But that view is shortsighted. We don’t just care about what the decision is and whether a decision is right, just, efficient or good. We also care about who makes the decision.”

Money and Modern Life

“The centrepiece of Simmel’s work is a conceptualisation of exchange, an act between two people that produces value, a ‘third term, an ideal concept which enters into the duality but is not exhausted by it’. This irreducibility is why value can, in the form of money, take on a life of its own, which Simmel describes as ‘the reification of exchange among people, the embodiment of pure function’. Of course, no one said exchange would always be fair: as bandits and medical insurance companies know, one will pay any price to live. Nevertheless, as acts of exchange proliferate, currencies and prices rationalise and standardise value.”

‘Two Hundred Years Back, One Hundred Years Ahead: From One Revolution to Another’

Two hundred years ago, a seemingly megalomaniac and even hopeless project was started in the West: overcoming poverty by creating more prosperity. This project was called “Progress”. Two hundred years later we can only conclude that this project was more successful than we could have anticipated. However, this project also has some serious shadow sides. As humanity we have to start a new, at first sight almost equally megalomaniac project for the next hundred years: making our prosperity sustainable.

Explainer: What Is Surveillance Capitalism and How Does It Shape Our Economy?

Want to know what ‘surveillance capitalism’ is? This article explains!
“Surveillance capitalism describes a market driven process where the commodity for sale is your personal data, and the capture and production of this data relies on mass surveillance of the internet. This activity is often carried out by companies that provide us with free online services, such as search engines (Google) and social media platforms (Facebook).”

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