Origins of Political Order – Francis Fukuyama
I finally finished this one. It was awesome. I'll definitely have to re-read. It was interesting and dense. In the last few chapters, there were a few things that stood out to me.
The United States today has a lot of parallels to pre-revolution France. The government has proven ineffective at extracting assets from the wealthy and so the burden of taxation falls on the lower and middle class. We also have a government that, although they cannot pass on the office to descendants, they can exploit the system to their advantage.
So far the American people have proven ineffective at getting them to change. Our government continues to be run by elite cliques and powerful corporate interest lobbies. Our government and its various agencies have been captured by corporations. Just look at what happened to the banking industry after the 2008 financial crisis, absolutely nothing. They have been allowed to continue to leverage themselves beyond reason knowing that the American people will bail them out. The FCC and its leader/corporate shill Ajit Pai have just about successfully dismantled net neutrality, something that no one except the misinformed and the Internet Service Providers wanted. It's ridiculous.
At some point, people will get fed up. I think that's why a lot of people voted for Trump. Sadly I haven't seen any of the change people were hoping for. Mostly it seems we've got more of the same. Except our executive branch has turned into a revolving confederacy of ineffective sensationalists. With the POTUS being the foremost.
Hopefully, we've evolved past the point where the Tree of Liberty must be refreshed with the blood of patriots, to paraphrase Thomas Jefferson. Avoiding something like the French Revolution would obviously be ideal. Judging by recent events across the country I'm not sure. Although in spite of the negativity and violence going on across the country I have seen a lot of good come out of the disasters of this hurricane season.
Who knows what the future holds. Hopefully, I can prepare my kids for whatever comes.
Ancillary Sword – Anne Leckie
This is the second book in the series. I really enjoyed it. Once again this was all about the interesting characters. I thought it had some interesting things to say on the topic of artificial intelligence as well as human rights. Overall, I'd highly recommend this one as well. This whole series has been a fun ride. I'll have to reread.