From economic advantages to military might, alignment with the great powers of the world has its perks. But what about potential implications and advantages in the legal realm?

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UN Office at Geneva, Switzerland (UNOG); headquarters of the UN Human Rights Council. The International Criminal Court — where international tribunals are held — is located elsewhere, in The Hague, Netherlands. Credit: Mathias P.R. Reding

In a World Policy Journal article published in 2003, the current Chair of Political Science at City University of New York, Rajan Menon, boldly declared “The End of Alliances” [1]. After witnessing the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, the ascension of the United States into the role of lone superpower by 2000, and the American shunning of both allies and the U.N. in the run-up to its 2003 invasion of…


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By exploiting the naturally-limited bandwidth and blurry memories of human beings, the GOP continues to peddle the most dangerous of lies — false equivalencies — to stay in power, even after the insurrection attempt on Jan. 6th, 2021.

False equivalency is more than just a “spin,” it is more than just a tactic that masks the fact that you are losing a debate; it is the purposeful weaponization of the natural human propensity for blurry memories. It exploits the relative ease with which an illusion of truth can settle over repeated statements by those in power, even when false.

Innate within the human mind is the tendency to compare. This basic tenet of psychology consistently informs decision-making, inner thought, and social behavior across all humankind, regardless of politics, country, or continent.

Whether we like it or not, we have both performed and been on the receiving end of comparisons all our lives: academic rankings, sporting events, skills competitions, voting, dating, and more — the list goes on. Most of our routine comparisons are benign, at least to a peaceful extent. …

Lucien Wostenholme

Cornell '23 | Political takes informed by economics, psychology, urbanism, and empathy.

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