We live in an age of extremes. All around the globe, the forces of the center-right and center-left are losing ground to the seductive but false certainties of ideology and populism. The Niskanen Center believes that the best way to counter the tendency toward extremism is to create a new model of principled moderation. 

That’s easier said than done at a time when the political process has become polarized and tribal, rendering government dysfunctional. The market economy no longer seems to generate mass prosperity. Society has become increasingly divided along lines of class, education, and geography. The outdated political nostrums of both left and right seem unable to cope with new problems of widening income inequality, crumbling communities, climate change, mass migration, unaddressed long-term threats to public welfare, and a growing loss of faith in social democracy and the American dream of rising living standards for each successive generation.

Can a reimagined politics of pragmatism and moderation provide a new way forward? We believe that it can and must. But this new politics must avoid the tepid mush of difference-splitting centrism and compromise for compromise’s sake. We are in search of a moderation that can be dynamic and innovative, politically compelling, and even radical. The essays and papers on moderation that we have assembled here are our invitation to you to join us in this exciting new exploration.



Podcast Episodes

Conferences (With Transcripts of Panels)

Beyond Left and Right: Moderation in an Age of Extremism, a Niskanen Center Conference held on February 25, 2019.