In the 1990’s, the world was changing in ways that few could have imagined or predicted. The world experienced amazing advances in science, space exploration, and technology. Of particular interest to me were the changes in computing, software and the Web, which enabled one of the most amazing expansions in communications, news and press, creativity and business — unparalleled since the industrial revolution, and through a completely new and unique medium.
The 90’s also saw much social and political turmoil as well. The ultimate demise of our cold-war enemy, the Soviet Union, changed the entire geopolitical landscape. The USSR‘s political death left a vacuum encompassing vast regions and people from the former Soviet republics and non-democratic middle east countries to Asia and Africa, often leaving these regions vulnerable exploitation and attack from extreme right-wing nationalists, religious extremists, and outright dictators and despots. Terrorists were beginning to target the US directly, and antagonists around the world were using resources, from energy to food, to effect international policy and populations in ways that simply hadn’t been possible before.
In the midst of this, I wasn’t the only person to see the potential of the internet for education, to inform and educate citizens of the world to help them overcome these significant obstacles along the path of history. One way or another, we will invariably reach the future… but education and informed decisions (or lack thereof) will be the single most critical factor in determining whether our common future is bright, or dark.
And so, the idea of “First Convention” was born.
First Convention is intended to be a forum for the informed debate and resolution of social, political and economic issues. The key words here are informed, and resolution. The state of our respective political discourse today is absolutely disappointing, at best. Rather than discuss and decide the best course of action, put disagreements in context of simple difference of opinion, and treat our fellow citizens with respect, today seems more about slick marketing, or seeing who can yell the loudest, personally attacking as mortal enemies fellow citizens who simply disagree. It’s pathetic. It’s time to add more reasonable voices to the discussion. It’s time for something like a new, First Convention.
I plan to take a while – months or perhaps years – to just discuss issues of the day, in the context of trying to find solutions to our problems, rather than just complain about them. In some cases, I will directly criticize individuals and organizations who oppose any reasonable debate of issues, and I’ll point out the logical and factual errors of their “arguments” as well.
Hopefully then, after a while, I’ll be able to invite some really smart people to participate and contribute. At this point, “First Convention” consists of the founder (me) just getting warmed up and talking to himself. But the objective here is truly participatory interaction among a large group of experts and luminaries who actually know what they’re talking about, who will provide a better alternate to the shouting of uninformed opinions back and forth without any resolution.
At that point, First Convention will begin doing something useful. Experts from the private and public arenas will discuss and propose solutions to various problems that can or should be solved by government today – and not just for the benefit of my country, the US, but for any other democracies and democratic movements abroad.
So, feel free to add this blog to your feed-list (use the “Subscribe” or “RSS” buttons at right), tell your friends, join any newsletter subscription list (which I may add later), and know that you’re welcome to contact me any time.
First Convention will be your forum – a refuge for citizens concerned about the issues we face today, weary of how their political representation apparently has no desire or ability to actually solve any problems, and for those who believe most of us are at least trying to do better, achieve more – or, as written much better by the American forefathers, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the blessing of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.