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Upcoming events (4+)

HumanistsMN. D-Squared Questions Capitalism, American-Style

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Following up on the Think! Book Club's discussion of Steven Pearlstein's book "Moral Capitalism," our October D-Squared event will have us looking more broadly at capitalism, American-style. We will consider its virtues and failings as well as how it might be improved. In addition to the concern with extreme economic inequality raised by Pearlstein, we will consider capitalism's planet-threatening focus on economic growth and its impacts on human psychology and culture.

D-Squared (Discussion and Debate) is a monthly gathering sponsored by HumanistsMN and hosted by Jerry Smith and Mark Thoson. Jerry will be moderating this month's discussion.

As usual, we are assigning "homework" in the belief that preparation will help participants contribute to a thoughtful, informed discussion. Please try to read some or all of the following before the event:

Last month's Think! Book Club selection, "Moral Capitalism," provides an in-depth discussion of the extreme economic inequality, and consequent societal dysfunction, created by our capitalistic economy. Those issues are also addressed in this Brookings Institute article.
An even more comprehensive critique of capitalism is provided by Wikipedia.

Other, more specific, concerns with capitalism that we'll discuss include: its planet-threatening reliance on economic growth, the inordinate influence of the financial sector in our economy, and capitalism's effects on American and global cultures.

We will consider various defenses of capitalism, including an argument that we need more capitalists, as well as Yuval Levin's claim that capitalism makes us better people. This BBC piece predicts the "next stage" of capitalism, while a McKinsey article asks us to "rethink its future." Specific prescriptions for change are provided by the experts on this panel.

Assuredly there are many more articles and videos of relevance to our topic. So if you aware of other online resources that would enlighten us, feel free to suggest them by posting links in the "Comments" section below.

Feel free to make a copy of this session's discussion topics and questions, which can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pRJ8szOs-fw_mQ64Ttf1TwRGMR3Hx_IO/edit

This event is sponsored by HumanistsMN. If you are not yet a member, please consider joining to help us cover our costs and build the humanist movement. Not ready to join? Donations are gratefully accepted! Donate or join through our home page.

RAFT Book Club

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The book for October is "Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America" by Barbara Ehrenreich.

RAFT General Meeting

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John Tacinelli, an instructor at Rochester Community and Technical College, will talk to us about the James Webb Space Telescope. Attendance is limited to 20 for this event since that is the capacity of the space we are renting, so please sign up if you plan to come.

HumanistsMN. THINK! Book Club: Ezra Klein, "Why We're Polarized"

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Our October reading for the Think! Book Club will be Ezra Klein's 2021 book, "Why We're Polarized." A cofounder of Vox, Klein is a columnist for the New York Times who previously wrote for the Washington Post. "Why We're Polarized" uses extensive political, historical, and psychological research to explain why Americans are so sharply split into red and blue political camps that encompass other belief, value, and lifestyle differences. Klein argues that our political system is designed to promote polarization and that our media ecosystem has fueled an excessively identity-based politics.

"Why We're Polarized" has 278 pages of text and can be purchased in paperback from Amazon for $12. Truth be told, you're welcome to join us even if you don't read the book but would like to participate or just listen in on a discussion of these matters.

This event is sponsored by HumanistsMN. If you are not yet a member, please consider joining to help us cover our costs and build the humanist movement. Not ready to join? Donations are gratefully accepted. Donate or join here.

Past events (852)

RAFT Happy Hour

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