Politics & Economics 101 – “Satisficing” May 11, 2016Posted by Chris Mark in Politics, Uncategorized.
Tags: 2nd amendment, bias, Decision Making, Herbert Simon, Heuristic, politics, Satisficing
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As we are well into this latest political cycle I thought it prudent to introduce or remind everyone of an important political (and decision making) concept. In his seminal 1947 work Administrative Behavior the esteemed Political Scientist, Economist and Nobel Prize Laureate Herbert Simon referenced a concept he called Satisficing. The concept was formally put forth in 1965. So what exactly is Satisficing? First it is a portmanteu which combines “satisfy” and “success”. According to Wikipedia Satisficing is: “Satisficing is a decision-making strategy or cognitive heuristic that entails searching through the available alternatives until an acceptability threshold is met.” The term satisficing, a combination of satisfy and suffice.”
We all Satisfice every day. Consider the last car you bought. (more…)
Autocracy, Anocracy, & Democracy – “Verbal Masterba(bleep!)…” January 25, 2016Posted by Chris Mark in Laws and Leglslation, Politics.
Tags: anocracy, autocracy, Chris Mark, democracy, Dr. Heather Mark, facebook, mark consulting group, politics
Election season in the US is always interesting. Passions run high and people are quick to proclaim their positions on government and politics. Unfortunately, as many will likely agree, election season also gives voice to many who should probably remain silent.
Recently I was taken to task on Facebook and lectured on the concept of governance and democracy by a particularly obtuse and offensive individual. When I attempted to explain that democracy should NOT be considered a strictly binary proposition and that the US was indeed a democracy, his attacks became personal and I was accused of (among other things) “verbal masturbation”. According to this master of the English language: “Most folks like me would call your ideas verbal masturbation. They sound good from the outside but are really kinda stupid”…he actually wrote: “Kinda”…somehow this person drew a line between my comments on democracy and his belief that the federal government would force parents to stand by while their 12 year old daughters got abortions without consent. I am at a loss as to the logic… But…I digress. Back to democracy! (more…)
New Political Blog! (Dr. Heather Mark and her ‘help’)… June 16, 2015Posted by Chris Mark in Uncategorized.
Tags: Democrat, politics, Pundit, Republican, TheMarkTank
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Election season gets people interested in politics. For this reason we (Dr. Heather Mark) and I decided to create a new blog TheMarkTank specifically focused on educating people on various political topics! In truth, Heather will do the heavy lifting and I will try to keep up and sound smart by ‘borrowing’ some of her work!…Either way..please send questions and comments our way. Heather has a PhD in Public Policy and Public Administration and a BA and MA in Political Science. In short..she knows politics!…We would love to hear from you. Check out the site!
Tags: Assassination, Iran, iraq, MEK, Mujahedin-e Khalq, Peoples Muhajadin of Iran, politics, terrorism
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If asked to name a terrorist organization most Americans could likely name Al Qaeda, Al Shabbab, and a few others. Few are probably familiar with the Mujahedin-e Khalq or Peoples Mujaheddin of Iran known by its initials MEK. Accused of killing American servicemen and contractors in the 1970s and supporting the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran before breaking with the Iranian mullahs in 1980 the MEK has been designated a terrorist group by the US State Department since 1995. The MEK, however do not simply attack Americans. According to The American Muslim: “The M.E.K. are terrorists. They were driven out of Iran and given a home at a place called Camp Ashraf in Iraq by Saddam Hussein, who they supported. Saddam Hussein used the M.E.K. to carry out terrorist acts in Iran.” In 2001, the MEK “renounced” terrorism. Irrespective of this renunciation, a 2004 FBI report on the MEK which was revealed in June 2011 states that the MEK The long and short is that the MEK are current terrorists not former terrorists. So why would the US consider removing the designation from the group?
Many people are likely familiar with some of the more recent activities of the MEK. The MEK is responsible for assassination of 5 Iranian nuclear scientists since 2007 and possibly destroyed a missile site. Trained, financed and supported by Isreal, the MEK has been used to disrupt the Iranian nuclear operations causing a delay of years to Iran’s objective of creating a nuclear weapon. In March 2012 Richard Engel & Robert Windrem of NBC News reported that:
“Deadly attacks on Iranian nuclear scientists are being carried out by an Iranian dissident group that is financed, trained and armed by Israel’s secret service, U.S. officials tell NBC News, confirming charges leveled by Iran’s leaders.” And then “”… Two senior U.S. officials confirmed for NBC News the MEK’s role in the assassinations, with one senior official saying, “All your inclinations are correct.” A third official would not confirm or deny the relationship, saying only, “It hasn’t been clearly confirmed yet.” All the officials denied any U.S. involvement in the assassinations.””
It is certainly interesting that a terrorist organization that is now taking action which supports the US’ agenda may suddenly be reclassified as not being a terrorist organization. This post is not intended to question the validity of the decision simply educate and highlight the point that in world politics “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”.
Tags: Chris Mark, elections, france, hollande, Iran, politics, sarkozy
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In what is proving to be a very interesting Sunday in the news, France has elected Socialist Francoise Hollande as president and voted out Nicolas Sarkozy. Likely surprising to many American’s, Hollande will be the nation’s first left-wing president since Francois Mitterrand left office in 1995. That being said, one of Hollande’ promises is to tax the “rich” at 75% of income. Sarkozy’s defeat marks the latest — and most significant — of at least half a dozen European leaders swept from office during the eurozone economic crisis, including the Greek and Italian prime minister.
This is an interesting time in Global Politics. While the Arab Spring seemed to signal a change in the Middle East, Europe has been moving, as well. (more…)