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宋徽宗为什么失败? - 宋徽宗 - 豆瓣

从大历史的角度,靖康是中国胡汉文明在融合冲突过程的必然,几乎可以视为南北融合的代价。南宋偏安并非毫无好处,这也使得中国南方得到进一步发展。按照雷海宗先生的区分,中国四千年来的历史可分为两大周。“第一周,由最初至公元三八三年的淝水之战,大致是纯粹的华夏民族创造文化的时期,外来的血统与文化没有重要的地位。第一周的中国可称为古典的中国。第二周,由公元三八三年至今日,是北方各种胡族屡次入侵,印度的佛教深刻地影响中国文化的时期。”

宋代是一个平民社会,这其实也是宋代在遭遇进攻时,难以将庞大经济力量转化为致命武力的原因。南北朝时代,传承儒家正统的,主要不在晋朝,反而是北方的大家族。唐宋之后,南渡衣冠渐成绝响,在新的平民社会中,门阀士族等中间组织被打散。科举制造就了新一代文人,看起来是一个美好时代,方便了皇帝与官僚科层的结合,却并不有利于军事机器的效力。宋朝风雅之下的集权倾向与阶层变异,看起来怪异,其实放在科举背景下,很容易理解。
song  history  aristocracy  fail 
april 2019 by aries1988
When Asia Ruled the World
Nonfiction The Pudong skyline, Shanghai. Credit Lauryn Ishak for The New York Times Amazon Local Booksellers Barnes and Noble When you purchase an independently…
contrarian  west  empire  conflict  world  war  success  europe  fail  qing  ottoman  book  opinion  history  prediction  theory 
april 2019 by aries1988
A Certain Idea of France | Peter Hitchens

Charles de Gaulle’s life would perhaps have been better lived in the seventeenth or eighteenth century, in times when personal courage, mystical imagination, chivalry, and religious fervor were more welcome than they are now. In this world of the United Nations, risk assessment, lawyers, Geneva Conventions, television and superpowers, there is not really enough room for such a man to swing his sword, just as there is no room for old-fashioned great powers in the shadow of superpowers. Had he not been so magnificent, he would have been ridiculous. He looked, more than anything else, like a camel, not least because of the superior expression on his face suggesting that he alone knew the secret One Hundredth Name of God, which camels are supposed to know.

It is a strange fact that the potentially attractive political combination of liberty, domestic socialism, well-armed patriotism, and social conservatism seldom exists in the advanced countries of the West.

François ­Mitterrand, his old rival, undid almost all of de Gaulle’s work. He wholly rejected the general’s belief in an enduring, sovereign France. ­Mitterrand had been decorated by Pétain’s collaborationist Vichy government, and like many intelligent Frenchmen, saw 1940 as a moment of truth that France could not thereafter ignore. It fell to people like him to implement Hector Dexter’s vision of a Europe whose common cultural bond was Coca-Cola, and ­McDonald’s, too.
leader  president  france  français  history  ww2  europe  eu  fail  politics  bio  american  anti 
march 2019 by aries1988
How the Inkas governed, thrived and fell without alphabetic writing

Instead of writing, the Inkas’ principal bureaucratic tool was the khipu. A khipu consists of a number of strings or cords, either cotton or wool, systematically punctuated with knots, hanging from a master cord or length of wood; pendant cords might also have subsidiary cords. The basis of khipu accounting practice was the decimal system, achieved by tying knots with between one and nine loops to represent single numerals, then adding elaborations to designate 10s, 100s or 1,000s. By varying the length, width, colour and number of the pendant cords, and tying knots of differing size and type to differentiate data, the Inkas turned the khipu into a remarkably versatile device for recording, checking and preserving information.

It is hard to see how alphabetic writing would have helped the Inkas to administer Tahuantinsuyu more efficiently: this was not an intensively governed empire but a federation of tribute-paying and politically allegiant provinces. In other spheres of government, such as law, writing would doubtless have made more of a difference, leading perhaps to the development of written law-codes, arguably even a ‘constitution’. But since writing was never developed, imperial rule remained weakly institutionalised, leading to a concentration of power and office, which meant that when the Sapa Inka was removed, there was little to fall back on.

Inka religion, which was broadly speaking animistic, acknowledged many gods, ranging from heavenly bodies (Sun, Moon, stars) to topographical features (mountains, rivers, springs) to ancestors, whose earthly remains were venerated to a degree that baffled Europeans – although most of them made little attempt to understand such practices, disparaging them as heathen, folk-magic or simply childish.
americas  civ  opinion  writing  religion  fail  espagna 
january 2019 by aries1988
The school beneath the wave: the unimaginable tragedy of Japan’s tsunami
The trick is to preserve compassion without bearing each individual tragedy as your own;

In ancient times, this region of Japan, known as Tōhoku, was a notorious frontier realm of barbarians, goblins and bitter cold. Even today, it remains a remote, marginal, faintly melancholy place, the symbol of a rural tradition that, for city-dwellers, is no more than a folk memory.

Then darkness overcame him. Everyone who experienced the tsunami saw, heard and smelled something subtly different. Much depended upon where you were, and the obstacles that the water had to overcome to reach you. Some described a waterfall, cascading over sea wall and embankment. For others, it was a fast-rising flood between houses, deceptively slight at first, tugging trippingly at the feet and ankles, but quickly sucking and battering at legs and chests and shoulders. In colour, it was described as brown, grey, black, white.

A clock in a second-floor classroom at Okawa elementary school, which stopped at 3.36pm, about 50 minutes after the earthquake.
japan  earthquake  tsunami  school  human  error  children  death  japanese  2011  instapaper_favs  management  fail  2011/3/11 
october 2017 by aries1988
UNSATISFYING on Vimeo
During the summer of 2016, We created and directed a video about unsatisfying situations: the frustrating, annoying, disappointing little things of everyday life, that are so painful to live or even to watch.
video  life  moment  fail  bestof 
november 2016 by aries1988
关于教育,中国人很少会质疑的信念_维舟_腾讯大家
反过来,在19世纪的俄国,社会的发展使许多贵族阶层的年轻人开始受到良好的文化教育,他们看到了俄国现状的不足与落后,也不是不想推动社会的发展,然而却发现根本没有适合他们发挥才能的职位,他们所受的教育虽好,却是与社会脱节而不被需要的,因而成了一群苦闷的所谓多余人,除了文化事业的进步外,似乎也并未推动国家的富强,俄国一如既往地大大落后于西欧。

教育发展仅是社会发展的一个必要但不充分的条件。像菲律宾和前苏联-俄罗斯这样,虽然培养出了高素质的人才,但本国社会的发展却使他们找不到用武之地,甚至博士研究员为了谋生被迫去开出租车,那在这些结构性的制度问题得到解决之前,仅仅提升人口的受教育水平是无法产生明显的经济效应的。
education  state  development  history  comparison  russia  fail  future  youth 
july 2016 by aries1988
Why the Remain Campaign Lost the Brexit Vote - The New Yorker
To get people to turn out and vote in your favor, you also have to give them something positive to rally behind. The Leave campaign, for all its lies and disinformation, provided just such a lure. It claimed that liberating Britain from the shackles of the E.U. would enable it to reclaim its former glory. The Remain side argued, in effect, that while the E.U. isn’t great, Britain would be even worse off without it. That turned out to be a losing story.
politics  referendum  people  democracy  campaign  opinion  fail  uk  Brexit  2016 
june 2016 by aries1988
Looking for a Jump-Start in China - NYTimes.com

HERE is my prediction about China: The new paramount leader, Xi Jinping, will spearhead a resurgence of economic reform, and probably some political easing as well. Mao’s body will be hauled out of Tiananmen Square on his watch, and Liu Xiaobo, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning writer, will be released from prison.
2013  NYT  china  politics  fail 
january 2013 by aries1988
中印龙象赛跑:谁比谁更不稳定-翟华博客-我的搜狐
最近美国《外交政策》杂志与和平基金会发布的“2012年失败国家指数”(The Failed States Index 2012)按社会、经济、政治、军事等12个指标的评分(得分越高越不稳定)把世界上的国家分成了五类:最稳定(如美国、法国)、稳定(如日本、韩国)、中等状况(如蒙古)、较不稳(如俄罗斯、越南)、最不稳(如朝鲜、巴基斯坦),用五种颜色在地图上呈现了出来。
ranking  nation  future  india  china  fail  index  info  comparison 
june 2012 by aries1988
The Watch List - By Jay Ulfelder | Foreign Policy
Predicting state failure isn't as hard as you think.
nation  fail  future  index  ranking 
june 2012 by aries1988
Your Optimism Bias: One of the Best and Worst Tricks Your Brain Plays on You
By nature, we're optimistic. We think we're better than most people at virtually everything we do. We believe we'll beat the odds of getting cancer even when we smoke a pack of cigarettes a week. This is the result of our optimism bias, and it both helps us succeed and make some of the dumbest decisions of our lives. Here's how it works, and how you can make it work for you. More »
http://www.instapaper.com/read/288777571
optimism  fail  human  brain  bias 
may 2012 by aries1988

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