“The Tragedy of the Commons” is a dilemma described by Garrett Hardin in 1968. In this reading, several people, driven by personal interests and egoism, act rationally and independently; however, in the end, they destroy scarce resources. The article reflects on the topic of limited resources and suggests that some problems may remain technically unsolved. For example, the problem of population growth in its traditional understanding cannot be solved quickly.
Although Garrett Hardin’s research tries to review the problem from all sides, there are some shortcomings or discrepancies that sound not convincing in certain situations. “The Tragedy of the Commons” supports the idea that population growth is damaging for our planet because it leads to a faster decrease in scarce resources (Hardin, 1968). In addition, it states that both variables, such as the population and the number of resources, cannot grow simultaneously, which has been proven by diverse scientists (Hardin, 1968). His theory sounds not entirely trustworthy because its author did not review the recent trends. Population growth has been declining recently, and many countries started recognizing the phenomenon of population aging that leads to the decrease in young adults and teenagers. In addition, various types of resources such as oil, gas, ores, and minerals are limited; on the opposite, sunlight and the power of water and wind are generally unlimited.
The reading raised several questions in me that I have not answered yet. Technological advancements are bringing humanity closer to space and the utilization of its resources. Why did he not count the space resources as a possible solution? Why did he not review all the possible, sometimes even futuristic, options? Perhaps, Garett Hardin focused too much on people’s and natural weaknesses without paying attention to their strengths and developments.
The article “Is a Civil War Ahead?” discusses the probable outcomes of the attack on the Capitol. Its author mentions diverse factors that speak for the start of the civil war and warns every reader about the danger that the decision to start a riot may bring. In addition, the reading compares democracy in diverse countries and tries to draw the image of America’s democracy in the modern world. Remnick discusses changes that might have happened to the United States’ political system and the combination of democracy and autocracy that characterizes the state of politics in the USA.
The author gives several suggestions about stopping the probable civil war. For example, Remnick (2022) states that strengthening democratic institutions may help in stopping the civil war. Otherwise, the threats to the government and the political system will be unbearably high (Remnick, 2022). The author stated that the attack on the Capitol was considered a full democracy by that time (Remnick, 2022). Therefore, the reader can face some contradictions in this reading. In addition, “ancoracy” cannot be taken for the only reason of the probable civil war as it is in the article. Moreover, the broad-based democracy itself may have led to such outcomes. In the suggested situation with the attack on Governor Gretchen Whitmer, the guilt is on democracy itself. The coronavirus measures were introduced to protect people from the virus; therefore, they were taken for the sake of society. However, a group of people decided to kidnap the governor to support their opinion. Hence, full democracy led to people’s inability of following even the basic restrictions needed for protection and fighting for their rights even in irrelevant situations.
Hence, while I was reading the article, several questions came to my mind? How would the author explain the differences between absolute democracy and “autocracy”? Did she consider strengthening the rules to be an option for stopping civil war? Does rationalism always lie on the basis of riots, or are they generally led by emotion? These moments remain uncovered in the reading, although their understanding would help people comprehend the issue fully.
Hardin, G. (1968). The tragedy of the commons. The Garrett Hardin Society. Web.
Remnick, D. (2022). Is a civil war ahead? A year after the attack on the Capitol, America is suspended between democracy and autocracy. The New Yorker. Web.