So we now have a landing page at Oxford U. Press, and this is my first of many pitches asking The Radio Free Tom Twitter Family to pre-order "Our Own Worst Enemy." (Pre-orders are an author's friend.) Short elevator pitch follows. /1…
I haven't monetized anything here on my feed, especially during the last campaign. You can read me at @USATODAY and @TheAtlantic and other places, but mostly I hang and inundate you with my terrible takes on everything - for free! I'm employed and can do that, so it works. /2
But as an author, I hope you'll appreciate a longer treatment of a lot of the stuff we talk about here regarding democracy and our civic environment. If you've enjoyed those discussions, I think you'll like the book. (If you liked Death of Expertise, you likely will.) /3
Also, Oxford is an academic press, so supporting an OUP book is supporting not just my work, but a lot of university press scholarship out there. A good reason to buy from them! (We kept the price down, too.) So if you've enjoyed my tweets, consider pitching in for a book. /4
The book will definitely aggravate everyone in one way or another, and I hope it makes you think. I've appreciated the many discussions I've had here with you all about the subject. Thanks for considering. /5x…

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More from @RadioFreeTom

6 May
The Republicans, for all their screaming about socialism and Biden, have decided to let other people run the country. They have no agenda to overturn or replace anything. They don't really care about defeating Democratic policies. This should scare you more than anything. /1
Sure, they'd take being a majority because it means power and money and security, but they don't really care about policy - beyond tax cuts for favored patrons and donors. Other than that, their goal is *never to have to live among their own voters, whom they clearly hate.* /2
Cotton, Hawley, Stefanik, Cruz didn't get top-notch educations and climb the greasy pole of power just to end up as the top attorney in Bumblefuck County or the Majority Whip in Albany or Jeff City. They're better than that, you see. Better than you. Deserving of greatness. /3
Read 6 tweets
2 May
This is like when people tell me about their friends who are engineers who are dedicated Trumpists. You can be skilled at something but in terms of emotional intelligence be a cinder block. Or you can be a street sweeper and still know right from wrong and truth from bullshit. /1
One of the things you learn when you examine "foxes" (broad knowledge) vs "hedgehogs" (deep but narrow learning) is that hedgehogs are often the wrongest people there are once outside their own field. /2
Recommending the book here by @PTetlock on this, but in general, people with super-deep but narrow knowledge can be a lot dumber about a lot of other things because all they know is that one thing they're good at. /3
Read 8 tweets
1 May
A couple of comments on this important piece by Flounoy, from a military education perspective. And remember, I don't speak for the war college or DoD or anyone but me. I don't disagree with anything here, but I want to amplify a point about personnel and education. /1
Every time we realize that our thinking is too hidebound, we get all kinds of trendy demands from the DoD: Do stuff in Chinese! Or Arabic! More high-tech education! Learn about technology! And culture! And it's a lot of band-aids that say: "Teach engineers to be strategic." /2
The problem is that when educators say: "Not only should our guys read 'The Thucydides Trap,' they maybe should read, you know, Thucydides first," the answer is: "No, not that old dusty crap, something relevant and hip! About technology and stuff!" It's a constant pressure. /3
Read 14 tweets
25 Apr
Today when we were picking arbitrary "best 10 or 20 years of pop music," we all disagreed of course, but I don't think it's just that you pick the years of your youth. Rock was born in the 50s, and has had life stages. Not an expert, but will opine for a sec.
cc @dcherring

@dcherring I totally get that people might point to 1955 to 1965 as the greatest period of ferment and change, going from Perry Como to the Beatles in just ten years. It's an amazing time. "She Loves You" still sounds ...revolutionary to me, as music. Dylan. Elvis. I get it. /2
But that music is still tentative and commercial and produced in mono by old guys. From 1965 onward rock goes from a youth yawp to a no-shit art form. Soon the acts that are big are guys who wanted to be the Beatles or Elvis when they were kids. It's the next generation. /2
Read 13 tweets
24 Apr
So, here's the thing. The "mission" is "prevent the use of nuclear weapons against the United States." The problem is endless scenario planning about warfighting use, which is ludicrous but it's what planners get paid for. /1
That's not to say planning and wargaming is a bad idea, because the President needs more options than "screw it, incinerate the planet." But the idea that "I need X warheads for the mission" is pretty much 1960 thinking. This is a throwback to "destroy X Soviet ability." /2
At every stage of nuclear reductions, someone said "Okay, but any lower and we're in mortal peril." Lower than 20,000? Peril. 6000? Peril limit. 2200? Threshold of Hell. This is baked into U.S. nuclear planning and never changes. /3
Read 10 tweets
20 Apr
I should have know that people would be "whatabouting" this and would whine about one comment about Biden.

Biden is the president. Sequestered or not, the chief executive can and should set an example by respecting the deliberations of a jury. He's not just another pundit. /1
It was not some huge or fatal error. But if you care about the rule of law, you do not want the president ahead of time speculating about the "right" verdict. That's something Trump would do. Presidents should say: "I have faith in the justice system." Period. /2
It doesn't *matter* that they were sequestered. That's not the issue. The issue is that if they'd gone any other way, the President would be in the position of saying "well, the jury got it wrong." You don't want Presidents in that position. Not a huge error, just unwise. /3
Read 4 tweets

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