Thursday, September 05, 2013

Great Moments in Research: Thanks, Captain Obvious!

The idea that countries are less likely to engage in war with each other today than in the past has been argued by a number of academics in recent years, including Harvard University psychologist Steven Pinker, author of the 2011 book The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined
The new study, presented last week by Ohio State University professor Bear Braumoeller at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association, challenges that idea, finding that states are no less violent today than they have been through history.
It depends on the states involved, doesn't it?  I mean, the First World socialist-democratic nation-states of the EU aren't going to start literally massacring each other any time soon, but all bets are off if we're talking about rogue states, intrastate sectarian violence, or, even more messily, non-state (trans-state?) entities run by bloody-minded obsessives.  

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