Monthly Archives: October 2015

Geopolitics: The Art of Mapping the Future


October 9, 2015

superpower

Peter Zeihan, author of “The Accidental Superpower” and upcoming Lecture Luncheon speaker (October 16th) doesn’t need a crystal ball to know the future of our world. Instead, he uses readily-available scientific data to analyze the implications and trends for the U.S., Europe, Russia, China, and other countries. By analyzing such information as population aging demographics, history, cultural norms, and geographical features, he has been able to project likely events occurring over the next fifteen to twenty-five years.

In his analysis, America will fare extremely well in the near future but many other seemingly stable countries around the world are on the road to failure. Part of the reason for this has to do with the Bretton Woods agreement at the end of WWII in 1944-45 in which America (then obsessed with cold war objectives) pledged to safeguard free trade for countries around the world. This created the world we know today, where countries formerly occupied with skirmishing over shipping routes with their neighbors, were able to change their concentration to rebuilding and trade. Major exporters such as China and Germany are dependent on this kind of protected shipping.

However, with the advent of near self-sufficiency in oil production (due in part to America’s recent shale boom) and the end of the past cold war, the objectives of the U.S. have changed. American withdrawal from continuing to carry out the very-expensive protection of the world’s free-trade routes is already happening, and when full withdrawal occurs, Zeihan believes there will be a domino effect for many countries.

Some of his most unexpected predictions include:

  • Alberta, and the other Canadian provinces will become U.S. states.
  • Germany will be on the rise again in Europe.
  • Industrial collapse, and economic depressions are ahead for countries like Russia, Japan, and China.
  • Wars will begin to fight over formerly-protected shipping lanes. There will be wars for necessary resources.

America should not be involved in these wars, according to Zeihan. The reason is that America is blessed with excellent geography, near self-sufficiency in oil/shale, and has an open immigration policy that attracts young families who will continue to contribute to the economy. While other countries will have to fight wars for necessary resources denied by their geography, America will not need to do so. In fact, one of Zeihan’s most interesting predictions is that the biggest danger to the future U.S. is not terrorism, but the Mexican drug war run by cartels which has already infiltrated major cities in America, and which is likely to grow far worse.

The lecture luncheon featuring Peter Zeihan as speaker will take place Friday, October 16th, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. For more information, or to register, click here.

 

How Much Do You Know About…U.S. Geography


October 9, 2015

American geography is one of the best in the world. The U.S. has more navigable internal waterways than the rest of the world combined. The Midwest contains the world’s largest contiguous -arable farmland. The Atlantic and Pacific oceans insulate the United States from other countries. Deserts separate the United States from Mexico, and forests and lakes form a natural barrier with Canada.Test your American geographic knowledge!

flag

1. The only royal palace located in the United States is located in:

A. Boston, MA.
B. Honolulu, HI.
C. New York, NY.

 

2. At 86 meters below sea level, the lowest place in the U.S. is:

A. Death Valley, CA.
B. New Orleans, LA.
C. Key West, FL.

3. The tallest mountain in the world is in the U.S. It is:

A. Mount Whitney.
B. Mauna Kea.
C. Mount McKinley.

4.The longest river in the U.S. is the:

A. Mississippi.
B. Missouri.
C. Rio Grande.

5. A mountain range on the Moon was named for the mountain range that runs through Tenn. and North Carolina:

A. Rocky Mountains.
B. Blue Ridge Mountains.
C. Smoky Mountains.

ANSWERS

1. B. Honolulu, Hawaii. The only royal palace used by a monarch in the U.S. is located in Honolulu, Hawaii. It is the Iolani Palace and belonged to the monarchs King Kalakaua and Queen Lili’uokalani until the monarchy was overthrown in 1893. The building served as the capitol building until Hawaii became a state in 1959. Today this palace is a museum.

2. A. Death Valley, CA. The lowest point on land in the Western Hemisphere is Death Valley in California.

3. B. Mauna Kea.  This mountain is located in Hawaii, is only 13,796 feet (4,205 m) in altitude above sea level, however, when measured from the sea floor it is over 32,000 feet (10,000 meters) high, making it taller than Mount Everest (Earth’s tallest mountain above sea level at 29,028 feet or 8,848 meters).

4. B. Missouri river. The Missouri River is the longest river in North America. Rising in the Rocky Mountains of western Montana, the Missouri river flows east and south for 2,341 miles (3,767 km) before entering the Mississippi River north of St. Louis, Missouri.

5. C. The SmokyMountains are a small range of mountains on the moon near the Apollo 16 landing site.

(Answers from Wikipedia).

The Legacy View: A New Art Perspective


October 9, 2015

davidhead copyThe recent legacy art course series, developed and taught by Professor David Brauer, involves not just an exploration of different art styles, but also covers art and its influences within an historical context. The classes also focus on schools of art and major art centers. At present, Brauer is currently wrapping up “The Legacy of Venice” class and will be starting “The Legacy of Rome” class on Oct. 20th. We visited with him to find out more.

WIH Reporter:  What is important to know about your legacy classes?

Brauer: Normal art history classes cover a much shorter period of time, and include more detail. Legacy classes involve picking an historical thread, and tracing the artistic influences along a long connecting line.

WIH Reporter: What connecting lines will be followed in your upcoming “The Legacy of Rome” class?

Brauer: The class will, of course, cover the Renaissance and will also include rediscovery and reassessment of classical art. It will start at the beginning, but it will also include paintings in later centuries that show a less obvious line from Michelangelo.

WIH Reporter: What is the main advantage of looking at art through the legacy perspective?

Brauer: Legacy classes view art using a slice of history. This perspective puts works in a context, explaining why works look the way they do and what they have meant to people over time. It involves viewing art through a different prism.

WIH Reporter: What future legacy classes will you be considering?

Brauer: Legacy classes must meet a specific criteria. For instance, one can’t teach a class about the legacy of Florence art, because it dies on the vine around 1600. However, future classes will likely involve the legacy of French art, and also the legacy of Dutch art.

The Legacy of Rome” is a 6-week class, beginning on October 20th, at 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. For more information, or to register, click here.