More Things That Do Not Involve People Dying

Here’s Steven Walt’s IR Guide To Parenting, in which we discover how the study of international relations helps you understand what’s going on with your kids. For instance:

“Once the kids are mobile, you learn about another key IR concept: the window of opportunity. You’re feeding or changing Kid #1, and Kid #2 makes a bolt out the front door, just like North Korea tested a nuclear weapon while we were busy with Iraq. Or you’re in the middle of a crowded department store and they each decide to head down different aisles. The potential complications of a multipolar order were never clearer the first time this happened to me.”


“The whole field of asymmetric conflict can prepare you for another aspect of child-rearing: your superior education, physical strength, and total command of financial resources will not translate into anything remotely resembling “control.” A two-year old who is barely talking can destroy a dinner party or a family outing just by being stubborn, and a smart, loving, strong and wealthy parent can be damn near helpless in the face of a sufficiently willful son or daughter. Read Andrew Mack, Ivan Toft, or James Scott on “asymmetric conflict” and the “weapons of the weak” before you have kids, and at least you’ll be forewarned.”

Meanwhile, Undiplomatic spots a wonderful headline on Iran: “Clerical Error“.