Your idea that if a strategy exists it will be used is quite on the point. The problem is simply with a democratic system, it will lead to political polarisation which is not a new phenomena. It reached unheard levels during WW1 and WW2, it reached very high levels during the Civil War, and compared to those we are now at high but not ridiculous levels of Polarisation. Imagine a system that gives power according to vote gathering, initially you can assume that fair minded people play in the system, try to be reasonable in arguments, try to embrace fair play etc. The system however rewards people who bring out voters, which can easily be done by making a certain political issue existential. This is achieved through heated rhetoric, massive activism and continuous moralising of an issue that merits neither. Over time, only the players who do so would continue to exist in the system, the fair minded people would keep losing and be forced to quit or willingly exit the game. What you will end up with is players on both sides of the spectrum using heated rhetoric, massive moralising, intense no compromise etc. a version of this argument is presented in Public Choice Economic Theory. How does polarisation stop then? History shows us that it only stops when one side convincingly completely dominates the other side, then we will be followed with a period of stability and prosperity till it inevitably begins again. There’s no reason to believe there’s any other solution. However, it does seem like the energy in every subsequent polarisation among the people tends to decrease. An interesting trend is that 1850s polarisation, led to a war with a massive death toll. 1910’s polarisation led to massive workers of the world rallies with death tolls in the 10’s, and generally open shoutouts between sheriffs and protestors. 1960’s polarisation also led to quite a bit of deaths, a bit of underground bombing but avail not as bad as 1910s. 2020 lead to CHAZ and whatnot, clearly the weakest of all. This indicates a steady decline in energy which might be occurring because of a general apathy to the issues or a steady weakness of opposition

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That's a really interesting perspective - thanks for sharing!! I feel part of the reason we feel there's such heights of polarisation is simply because we get to know everything - there's no friction in information dissemination anymore. We have unheard levels of transparency on how govt works, and politics has become a videogame with immediate feedback which makes the feedback loops run faster and reach extreme outcomes quicker. That said, folks breaking into the Capitol kinda makes me feel we have a bit of craziness now too!

Re breaking out, I also think a way for it to fizzle out the tensions it usually helps to have a locus of growth that's orthogonal. The current "stimulus" helps, because people get to refocus on their lives. Same re new tech and a new progress curve. To me that's one of the lessons we should take from the post-war growth era.

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