News and Announcements

nycpf's picture

Remembering John McCain

In light of the recent passing of Sen. John McCain, we'll spend a couple of hours discussing his legacy.

We'll critically examine various aspects of his public life, including:

- His military service and years of captivity as a POW.

- Congressional Career spanning over three decades.

- Legislative aims and accomplishments, including in the areas of bipartisan bills and laws, such as campaign finance reform, comprehensive immigration reform, and reforms to reduce congressional appropriations and waste.

- His Presidential bids in 2000 and 2008.

- His expertise in the area of foreign policy -- and thereby advocating the aggressive use of military force and defense spending.

- His checkered relations with the members of the Republican Party.

- His checked record on race relations and civil rights.

- His legacy as a "Maverick."

nycpf's picture

Saturday, September 1, 2018 Demystifying the "Deep State"

Premise: The deep level of distrust and disdain in many of our society's institutions are at all time low. Some feel betrayed by these institutions, while others assert that they have simply outlived their usefulness, in this rapidly-changing society. Technology has fueled the widespread of misinformation and conspiracy theories.

Where do we go from here?

*************

Background: For many decades, those on the Left commonly invoked the term "Military Industrial Complex" in criticizing government abuse and lack of transparency. Those on the Right commonly invoked the term "Shadow Government" to describe a similar phenomena. However, in the recent years the term "Deep Sate" has seeped into the public discourse.

*************
For this meeting, we'll evaluate and explore the following concepts in furtherance of demystifying the "Deep State":

- Its origins and prominence, especially in the name of "National Security."

- Other similar terms and phenomena, including "The Police State," "The Security State," "The Permanent State," and "The New World Order."

- Emergence of mainstream appeal of underground conspiracy movements vis-a-vis "QAnon."

- The notion of "entrenched bureaucracy."

- The rise of government secrecy and covert operations.

nycpf's picture

The Moral Roots of Liberals and Conservatives -- a townhall discussion

This discussion will initially start out with the five "moral statements of the righteous minds," as mentioned in the TED Talks.

This discussion will initially start out with the five "moral statements of the righteous minds," as mentioned in the TED Talks.

- harm / care
- fairness / reciprocity
- in-group / loyalty
- authority / respect
- purity / sanctity

We'll then discuss different ways how the liberals and conservatives perceive their own psychology vis-à-vis the psychology of their ideological counterparts. We'll compare and contrast the instinctual, tribal, and steadfast "visceral" views held by both sides, including the following examples:

- On "rational" thinking
- On "progress" and "inequalities"
- On "emotionalism" and objectivity
- On individual responsibility
- On individualism vs. collectivism
- On technology and cultural preservation

nycpf's picture

Immigration: Border Security, "Zero Tolerance," Sanctuary City, and Central American Policies

In August 2014, we hosted an epic "Immigration Debate," comprehensively debating various aspects of the U.S. Immigration Policy at the time (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/events/193436152/).

The political winds have changed since August 2014, and the Immigration Debate has now become a cornerstone of the partisan divide in the U.S.

*******************

For this meeting, we'll discuss the following four policies:

I. NYC's designation as a "sanctuary" jurisdiction and the federal government's withholding of grants. We'll also discuss NYC's recent court challenge of the DOJ's withholding of grants (https://www.law.com/newyorklawjournal/2018/07/18/ny-state-city-suing-tru...).

II. The "Zero Tolerance" Policy of separating families at the border -- the purported merits and the moral objections. We'll also discuss the subsequent Executive Order ending this Policy (https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/affording-congress-oppor...).

nycpf's picture

Foreign Policy Roundtable: Russia + NATO Summits, Brexit, "Trade War" and Mexico

Join us for this month's featured Foreign Policy discussion, covering some of the most consequential events unfolding on the world stage.

The discussion topics will include:

- The outcome and political fallout from the U.S.-Russia Summit in Helsinki.

- The outcome of the NATO Summit and the U.S.' future role in it.

- The U.K.'s Brexit dilemma -- too "soft" or too "hard"?

- An escalation of the "trade war" between the U.S. and China.

- Mexico's new President-elect, and the future of the U.S.-Mexico relations, including the fate of NAFTA.

nycpf's picture

#MeToo, #TimesUp -- the past, present, and future (Movement Politics, Part 4)

The "Movement Politics" series explore the various social movements, political forces, and coalitions that aim to bring about certain political changes, reforms or outcomes in furtherance of advancing a particular ideology.

Our aim is to explore these movements or groups, in depth, without the veneer of hyperpartisan rhetoric. As such, the discussions will be based on factual evidence, coupled with sound reasoning and any persuasion at the highest level of intellectual rigor.

*************
We've partnered with WeWork for this special townhall event.

For this meeting, we'll examine the rise and prominence of #MeToo in the public discourse, as it relates to an international movement against sexual harassment and assault. To that end, we'll discuss the following topics:

- Its origins and online campaigns.

- Its awareness and empathy, resulting in "The Reckoning."

- Its policies and laws, as they relate to workplace.

- Its reach and impact in various sectors and industries.

- Similarities to prior movements or campaigns.

- Its criticisms, backlash, and any unintended consequences.

- Finally, how it may shape the public discourse in the future.

nycpf's picture

Law, History & Politics: The French Revolution -- Happy Bastille Day!

As we commemorate Bastille Day, we'll discuss the French Revolution (circa 1789 to 1799). For this meeting, we will examine the Revolution by analyzing its three distinct components: Law, History and Politics.

To that end, we'll discuss the following:

I. Law

Declaration of the Rights of the Man and of the Citizen (http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/rightsof.asp)

The French Constitution of 1791
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Constitution_of_1791)

II. History

New political ideas emerging from the Enlightenment.

Inspirations and aspirations derived from the "American Revolution."

Severe economic hardship caused by national debt and the political mismanagement of King Louis.

The financial woes brought on by wars and disruptions in its imperial colonies.

The storming of the Bastille in July 1789.

The overthrow of the Monarch and the public execution of France's last King and Queen.

The three distinct stages of the Revolution: the uprising, the overthrow, and the "Reign of Terror."

III. Politics

The post-feudal political system comprising of the "Three Estates."

nycpf's picture

Movement Politics: Black Lives Matter

The "Movement Politics" series explore the various social movements, political forces, and coalitions that aim to bring about certain political changes, reforms or outcomes in furtherance of advancing a particular ideology.

Our aim is to explore these movements or groups, in depth, without the veneer of hyperpartisan rhetoric. As such, the discussions will be based on factual evidence, coupled with sound reasoning and any persuasion at the highest level of intellectual rigor.

For this meeting, we've partnered with WeWork for this special "townhall" style event.

For this meeting, we'll examine and take a critical look at the rise and prominence of Black Lives Matter in the public discourse, as it relates to the modern civil rights movement. To that end, we'll discuss and explore the following themes:

- Its origins, organizational structure, and online campaigns.

- Its appeal for civic protest and activism.

- Similarities to prior civic protest movements.

- Its attempts to influence electoral politics.

- Its criticisms, backlash, and any unintended consequences.

- Finally, how BLM may shape the public discourse in the future.

nycpf's picture

The U.S. Supreme Court's 2017 Term in Review

The "Travel Ban," wedding cake, sports betting, internet sales tax, and the purging of voter lists -- these are just a handful of cases from the Court's docket during its 2017 Term.

Oh, and there was also an important partisan gerrymandering case, but the Court sidestepped it, by invoking a procedural escape-hatch, commonly referred to as the "lack of standing."

We'll also discuss the recent announcement of Justice Kennedy's retirement, and how this will impact the ideological makeup of the bench.

RSVP here: https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/events/251065057/

******************
Well, it's that time of the year again -- as the Court wraps up its 2017 Term, a series of important decisions will be handed down in the waning days.

As always, we'll be discussing these cases from a prism of political or public policy lenses -- no prior legal experience, or a comprehensive understanding of the Constitution or the Supreme Court is required.

To that end, we'll discuss the following cases:

nycpf's picture

Foreign Policy Roundtable: North Korea, G7, Jerusalem, and Italy's New Gov't

Join us for this month's featured Foreign Policy discussion, covering some of the most consequential events unfolding on the world stage.

The discussion topics will include:

I. The outcome of the U.S.-DPRK Summit in Singapore -- is it a beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning?

II. The U.S.' formal recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel and the ongoing Middle East diplomacy, amid the violent clashes at the Gaza border.

III. Italy's new "populist" coalition government vis-à-vis its uncertain future as an E.U. member state, amid stagnant economy and the "nationalistic" fervor brought on by recent waves of migrants.

IV. The outcome of the G7 (or the G6 plus one) Summit and the diplomatic fallout with its member states. Should it revert to G8?

More details to follow.

Pages