ABOUT THE NEWS- LETTER
RADICAL MIDDLE, THE BOOK:
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WHO WE ARE:
"Satin sees what he calls
radical middle politics as an innovation that's ideally suited to 21st
Radical Middle's Board of Directors and I created this vision-and-purpose statement during our first year of existence, 1998, and I still stand by every word. (Okay, maybe not the Tony Blair reference.) - M.S.
Radical Middle Newsletter doesn’t just report on innovative political ideas, books, and national meetings. It expresses an emerging political perspective and sensibility that we like to call “radical middle.
We call it a “sensibility” as well as a perspective because it’s not necessarily positional. Journalist E.J. Dionne expresses it as a series of questions (see Thinkers and Activists Try To Describe the Radical Middle elsewhere on this website). Political philosopher Andrew Schmookler found he could best express it through a fictional e-mail discussion among people of divergent views (Debating the Good Society: A Quest to Bridge America's Moral Divide,1999).
As a political perspective, it’s not a "safe" middle ground between the extremes of left and right. It’s off the traditional left-right spectrum . . . free to gather up ideas from everywhere.
But it's not counter-cultural, either. Some of its spokespeople -- including our editor -- grew up in the alternative culture and learned first-hand the limitations of a utopian politics disconnected from governing.
It’s “radical” because it’s seeking solutions that are holistic and sustainable. It’s “middle” because it accepts that you can’t change people very much. The Biblical vices will always be there . . . in every one of us, in fact.
Although the radical middle perspective can't be summed up in a couple of glib phrases, here are some aspects that Radical Middle Newsletter likes to stress:
One-world citizenship. A commitment to overarching human values and to a cosmopolitan identity as world citizens.
The radical middle infuriates many activists because it’s in love with messy, ambitious, exuberant humanity. It says “YES!” to science and technology, to entrepreneurship, to bringing us all into One (admittedly imperfect) World. And it infuriates many others because it wants to give everyone, and we mean EVERYONE, a fair start in life. Most of its preferred solutions won’t be debated on the floor of the Senate anytime soon.
The best thing about the radical middle perspective, though, is that it’s just beginning to be articulated, examined, refined. YOU can still affect it. And in many different guises, it’s emerging everywhere -- in Silicon Valley, in community groups that don’t just focus on protest, in the words (if not often the deeds) of Vaclav Havel and Tony Blair, in over 100 organizations both prominent and obscure. . . .
Some say it could emerge as the humane governing philosophy of the 21st century (see Thinkers and Activists Try To Describe the Radical Middle).
And many say the best place to watch it emerge is Radical Middle Newsletter.
ABOUT THE RADICAL MIDDLE CONCEPT
GREAT RADICAL MIDDLE GROUPS AND BLOGS:
SOME PRIOR RADICAL MIDDLE INITIATIVES:
SOME RADICAL MIDDLE LESSONS:
SOME PRIOR WRITINGS BY MARK SATIN:
NOT JUST RADICAL MIDDLE: