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Thread: Future Important Thread (Maybe)

  1. #4201
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    i thought we were talking about governments and governmental institutions here. if you are speaking of some philosophical notion that all human actions are actions of power, then that's a wholly different discussion.
    But my point is that it isn't a different discssion and that that is your error. *
    Besides - it isnt a very disputable philosophical notion.

    *"pulling a chomsky" and seperating out all the evidence against government from any evidence against anything else and thus infering that government must be a negitive influence because only it creates that stuff on your list of bad things...
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-06-2011 at 11:10 PM.

  2. #4202
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    i have no clue where you see all this dishonesty in chomsky. all i see in that debate is him rationally and honestly debating. honesty and authenticity like chomsky's is something i really miss in politicians and mainstream commentators. i fail to see his hidden agenda.
    I dont see it as dishonesty particularly - its just what people do. Chomsky just happens to be very well practised.
    This is just how being a good debater works in that sort of debate setting and ever more in the context of our adverserial media and political systems.

    and chomsky would never use words like "evil"
    I think you are refering to my asterix point that he infers it at a systematic level. but yeah he is much more careful about his use of langage than I am, but he is an expert debater and knows what the publics take away is from his debates and writings.

    Maybe I should say his work encorages readers to take away those inferences. But probably it is better put as zef puts it - he makes his point and suppports it with piles of evidence ignoring counter evidence such that it creates a false picture of what the connections are becase you miss so much of the picture
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-06-2011 at 11:15 PM.

  3. #4203
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    Quote Originally Posted by elthrasher View Post
    That might be part of it, but also the movement is growing and they've been out there for a pretty long time now. Unions are backing them and politicians are weighing in one way or the other. Kind of impossible to continue to ignore it.
    what do they actally want? or is it that they want to start a movement like the tea party and just get general democrat clout plus some clout to pull the democrats left?

  4. #4204
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    *"pulling a chomsky" and seperating out all the evidence against government from any evidence against anything else and thus infering that government must be a negitive influence because only it creates that stuff on your list of bad things...
    That's one way of doing it... perhaps another is to highlight everything bad in the U.S. government or mainstream media while ignoring anything good. It's easy to talk about mass brainwashing and propaganda when this is your method.

    Nevertheless, I still think people like him have an important role in society. We need critics of the status quo to remind us of its shortcomings.

  5. #4205
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zefelius View Post
    That's one way of doing it... perhaps another is to highlight everything bad in the U.S. government or mainstream media while ignoring anything good. It's easy to talk about mass brainwashing and propaganda when this is your method.

    Nevertheless, I still think people like him have an important role in society. We need critics of the status quo to remind us of its shortcomings.
    yes in a way..
    I have a concern that such a approach slowly driving out any other aproach in the competition of ideas as it becomes more of a science. It seems like that would happen at the limit. I'm not really a big fan of adverserial systems.
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-07-2011 at 01:35 AM.

  6. #4206
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    zef and scottie, relative to what the function of media ought to be there is nothing good to be ignored. it often doesn't do its job of presenting relevant information to the public. chomsky, of course, focuses on these instances instead of those where the media does its job. he also focuses on the negative impact of power structures because it's doubtful that they have any kind of positive impact relative to what reality would be without them. it seems to me that your argument of ignoring "positive data" stems simply from the fact that he mostly criticizes and rarely praises, thus forming the idea of biased thinking or deceitfulness in others.

    i am pulling a chomsky? this is what has to convince me that i don't. the tactic of argument you describe there i don't make use of. i wouldn't ascribe so many intentions to others, whether they be deliberate or subconscious.

  7. #4207
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    what do they actally want? or is it that they want to start a movement like the tea party and just get general democrat clout plus some clout to pull the democrats left?
    They want to change perception so people realize that the current concentration of wealth in America is neither natural nor necessary. Not that I speak for them or anything, but that's my take.

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    Quote Originally Posted by elthrasher View Post
    They want to change perception so people realize that the current concentration of wealth in America is neither natural nor necessary. Not that I speak for them or anything, but that's my take.
    hmm .. that is a little like having a protest in favor of FTL neutrinos isnt it? I mean its a complex debate where you are either right or wrong (and I think right as stated ofcourse)

    But usually protests are either about telling people you are hurting where they might not otherwise realise - or telling them you are willing to hurt them (eg block traffic) if they dont give you what you want. That gives everyone a clear action to perform in order to stop the protest and to make the protesters happy....

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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    zef and scottie, relative to what the function of media ought to be there is nothing good to be ignored.
    you do realise that relitive to perfection there is nothing good about anything?
    I can easily apply that to anything you might say - in fact I already did up thread regarding the idea of someone intentionally choosing anarchy over an ideal system and that being immoral.

  10. #4210
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    hmm .. that is a little like having a protest in favor of FTL neutrinos isnt it? I mean its a complex debate where you are either right or wrong (and I think right as stated ofcourse)
    No, it's not like that at all. FTL neutrinos aren't causing the middle class to collapse and their existence or non-existence isn't really of consequence to ordinary Americans.

    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    But usually protests are either about telling people you are hurting where they might not otherwise realise - or telling them you are willing to hurt them (eg block traffic) if they dont give you what you want. That gives everyone a clear action to perform in order to stop the protest and to make the protesters happy....
    I'm willing to bet you haven't been to New York City on a weekday. Blocking traffic is barely noticeable. I think this is about raising awareness, telling people why they are hurting, not simply that they are hurting. Everybody knows the economy isn't great (unless you work on Wall Street).

  11. #4211
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    No Im not saying they are casing a problem, I dont know if they are or aren't. Just talking about how protests normally work and how they get the action they desire. In a way I feel sympathetic towards them despite not knowing exactly what I am being sympathetic to. Maybe it is just that dressing up in zombie makeup is cool...

    My point is like how in advertising they say there should be a "call to action". It isnt good enough to get the customer to like your product, you need them to want to buy it and by it NOW - otherwise the effect of your advertising wears off as they delay their purchase.

    I think this is about raising awareness, telling people why they are hurting, not simply that they are hurting.
    Yeah - Im just wondering if it will be effective at getting anything changed in any sense. Or maybe if there is a more effective (and clearer) primary message for achieving the overall objective.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    Yeah - Im just wondering if it will be effective at getting anything changed in any sense. Or maybe if there is a more effective (and clearer) primary message for achieving the overall objective.
    We're supposed to get that from our political system, but it isn't working. Sometimes we send some really good people to DC with great intentions, but they just get buried buy money, a for-profit media, old boys' club, etc. I still support the Democratic party, but only really due to a lack of options. The fact of the matter is for the past several decades, all the Democrats have been is a very leaky firewall (is that a mixed metaphor?) against the GOP that would remake America in the image of China.

    We all had high hopes for Obama, but in retrospect electing a slightly liberal moderate isn't really the way to undo all the damage Reagan and the Bushes did. Not that we had another choice.

    Like so many folks in so many parts of the world and so many different points in history, we really have nothing left but to take to the streets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    it often doesn't do its job of presenting relevant information to the public.
    I imagine that media emerged origionally as a way for the authorities to spread certain information like the outcome of trials etc to the public. To move ones expectation to that of them revealing every important piece of information is probably too big a leap.

    I would suggest if you need information like that it is more somthing that should be revealed via some sort of official information agency where a structre will have the professional task of collating the data in an appropriate way and trawling it for data that is relevant in whatever way is required and then measured against that.
    I think i proposed this before as a measure of political candidates reliability - Im thinking here pretty mch of the proposal by David Brin.

    Still would our understanding of the world be better if the media stopped reporting at all on any events and we just had blogs and so forth to read? Most popular blogs I see are even more strongly aligned with political parties than fox news is. and even our media is too cheap to do much investigative journalism - the blogs in general wont get anywhere near being able to provide the incentives required to get someone to do that work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by elthrasher View Post
    No, it's not like that at all. FTL neutrinos aren't causing the middle class to collapse and their existence or non-existence isn't really of consequence to ordinary Americans.
    if two people moving apart at the speed of light tried to use them to commnicate, they might case the middle class to collapse .... along with everything else!

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    Looks like Zef was right:

    http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes...reet-protests/

    Now that's just dumb. Don't (the few dumb, abusive) cops realize that this is what happens? And don't tell me they are secretly trying to help. There'd be a lot of media coverage if cops just went down there in uniform and joined the protest. They don't need to break heads to get reporters to take notice.

  16. #4216
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    Quote Originally Posted by elthrasher View Post
    Now that's just dumb. Don't (the few dumb, abusive) cops realize that this is what happens? And don't tell me they are secretly trying to help. There'd be a lot of media coverage if cops just went down there in uniform and joined the protest. They don't need to break heads to get reporters to take notice.
    well if your dumb and abusive I presume you both dont understand (or more precisely haven't even considered the wider implications) and may well be more interested in your little bit of "revenge" anyway (bloody protesters keeping me out in the damn sun!).

    If he gets sacked or goes to jail he might care, but he is probably still a decent risk of doing it again anyway if he gets back into a uniform.

  17. #4217
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    Was reading this. And thought I'd just make a raving leftist crazy point...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/08/ny...-protests.html

    "Saying that today’s antiwar protesters seem respectful of the sacrifices made by American soldiers, Mr. Bloomberg added that in “the Vietnam War, which was my generation, we treated our vets who came back terribly, just terribly.” A lot of them “were ashamed to say they served in the war, instead of being proud of having put their lives on the line, and it was a very sad time,” he continued. "

    I really dont get this.. he seems to be saying as long as you put your life on the line and try really hard you should feel proud no matter what it is you were actually doing. Maybe that is only true if you are acting on behalf of a military - but still - that sounds like a really bad principle to live by.

  18. #4218
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    zef and scottie, relative to what the function of media ought to be there is nothing good to be ignored. it often doesn't do its job of presenting relevant information to the public. chomsky, of course, focuses on these instances instead of those where the media does its job. he also focuses on the negative impact of power structures because it's doubtful that they have any kind of positive impact relative to what reality would be without them. it seems to me that your argument of ignoring "positive data" stems simply from the fact that he mostly criticizes and rarely praises, thus forming the idea of biased thinking or deceitfulness in others.
    If there weren't any outspoken, intelligent people pointing out the flaws of the system, it would be even more difficult to transform our institutions. So objectively speaking I'm glad that Chomsky does what he does. I suppose that personally, however, I sometimes have a tough time reading people like him because I know they're not providing me with the full picture and I'd rather make my decisions on the basis of a well-rounded point of view than one which is selective in its data.

    In any case, I force myself to read him just as I read Henry Kissinger. They're obviously on extreme opposite sides of the fence, but there's almost always something to learn from passionate intellectuals and policy makers.

  19. #4219
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    Quote Originally Posted by elthrasher View Post
    Looks like Zef was right:

    http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes...reet-protests/

    Now that's just dumb. Don't (the few dumb, abusive) cops realize that this is what happens? And don't tell me they are secretly trying to help. There'd be a lot of media coverage if cops just went down there in uniform and joined the protest. They don't need to break heads to get reporters to take notice.
    I'm no historian, but I seem to recall that whenever there has been police abuse of protesters the protesters typically get more media coverage as well as sympathy. I think this has happened during the civil rights marches, vets protesting for benefits (when General MacArthur used the military against the vets!), the Kent State shootings, union strikes, etc.

  20. #4220
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    Was reading this. And thought I'd just make a raving leftist crazy point...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/08/ny...-protests.html

    "Saying that today’s antiwar protesters seem respectful of the sacrifices made by American soldiers, Mr. Bloomberg added that in “the Vietnam War, which was my generation, we treated our vets who came back terribly, just terribly.” A lot of them “were ashamed to say they served in the war, instead of being proud of having put their lives on the line, and it was a very sad time,” he continued. "

    I really dont get this.. he seems to be saying as long as you put your life on the line and try really hard you should feel proud no matter what it is you were actually doing. Maybe that is only true if you are acting on behalf of a military - but still - that sounds like a really bad principle to live by.
    I don't think he's saying that. He's probably suggesting that we should treat our vets with respect since they put their lives on the line for the rest of us. That doesn't mean the toops or protesters have to agree with the reasons for war, however, since we can distinguish serving one's country with bravery and loyalty from whether the political class was right to go to war in the first place.

    Personally, I used to defend the Vietnam war until just this summer, when I finally read up on it a little bit and watched a documentary. Now I think America was more responsible for that war than the North Vietnamese, since we had promised them earlier that they could hold free elections. We backed away from our promise when we recognized Ho Chi Minh would win, the leader of the North who wrote up a declaration of rights for his people modelled on our own Declaration. In addition, I don't any longer think that the domino theory really mattered in cases like Vietnam... since it wasn't ciritical to our interests except in a symbolic way.

    But I wouldn't for that reason hold it against any of the troops: many of them didn't want to be there themselves, but weren't in a position to do much about it.

  21. #4221
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zefelius View Post
    But I wouldn't for that reason hold it against any of the troops: many of them didn't want to be there themselves, but weren't in a position to do much about it.
    well that is why I was more concerned with the point about being proud than the one about being ashamed.

    I'm now wondering if in the extreme case (where let's say I was german and joined the german army and it went all "NAZI" on me and then I ended up fighting the allies) if shame would be the appropriate response, maybe not? (seems weird in a way but I dont mind biting bullets) ... But I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be pride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    I'm now wondering if in the extreme case (where let's say I was german and joined the german army and it went all "NAZI" on me and then I ended up fighting the allies) if shame would be the appropriate response, maybe not? (seems weird in a way but I dont mind biting bullets) ... But I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be pride.
    do you have some kind of power and fascism complex? it seems to attract you.

    depending on whether you buy the propaganda of those that send you to war, you might either feel proud or ashamed. in the case of you actually protecting yourself and those that you love by going to war pride might actually be a legitimate emotional response. americans and europeans don't have much to be proud of in the last sixty years when it comes to war.

  23. #4223
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    do you have some kind of power and fascism complex? it seems to attract you.
    I'm not sure what you are saying here - unless you are just generally trying to be an ass. In which case I acknowledge your attempt to annoy me, and wish you a good day

    For why such examples get used - some examples are useful as they engender a more specific response from a wide range of people. That means one doesnt get as easily diverted into off topic debates about if an actual even was an issue or not.

    And - in the big picture what I am doing here is spotting a a sacred cow and having a bit of a go at it because i figure it goes untested normally.

    I figure that liberals in the US may have stopped doing that less for logical reasons and more for strategic ones, ie they dont want to be on the side of the debate that sounds unfair to those who are less informed (ie the - I 'hate' the people who fought to 'defend' 'me' side).

    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    depending on whether you buy the propaganda of those that send you to war, you might either feel proud or ashamed.
    well that gets a bit interesting - does it mean you can feel proud as long as you were not wise enough to see thorugh their propoganda? Or proud that you did see through it?

    in the case of you actually protecting yourself and those that you love by going to war pride might actually be a legitimate emotional response. americans and europeans don't have much to be proud of in the last sixty years when it comes to war.
    The above seems a bit confused. Do you mean "if you THINK you are protecting..."
    If so - then in the context of the bloomberg statement - if they are incorect (pretty much as per your statement) - would you be wrong to deflate their pride? (contrary to bloomberg's wishes)

    or do you mean in the sense that, in war you are always protecting the friends fighting with you, and thus in a way all warriors can feel pride in their work?
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-08-2011 at 01:37 PM.

  24. #4224
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zefelius View Post
    since we had promised them earlier that they could hold free elections. We backed away from our promise when we recognized Ho Chi Minh would win.
    Just to delve a little deeper...
    I presume south vietnam was the one making the call here wasn't it? And one could at least make a reasonable philosophical argment that they might have the right to overturn a decision made by the WWII powers about whether their country should be merged (remerged) with another? And that military action to supress that right would not be highly illegitimate. (particlarly since it is proably a fair point that the election would not have been fair - on either side!).

    It seems a little illegitimate in itself that the US would be running around promising what another country will do particlarly in relation to merging that seems like the topic for internal referendums in both states.

    On the other hand I think I accept your point about vietnam not really being in the US's strategic intrests. And the broarder argument about Diem not being a saint and thus potentially not a big enough moral issue for the US to go in boots and all even if moral issues drove foreign policy.
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-09-2011 at 03:51 AM.

  25. #4225
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    Was reading this. And thought I'd just make a raving leftist crazy point...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/08/ny...-protests.html

    "Saying that today’s antiwar protesters seem respectful of the sacrifices made by American soldiers, Mr. Bloomberg added that in “the Vietnam War, which was my generation, we treated our vets who came back terribly, just terribly.” A lot of them “were ashamed to say they served in the war, instead of being proud of having put their lives on the line, and it was a very sad time,” he continued. "

    I really dont get this.. he seems to be saying as long as you put your life on the line and try really hard you should feel proud no matter what it is you were actually doing. Maybe that is only true if you are acting on behalf of a military - but still - that sounds like a really bad principle to live by.
    That sort of what he's saying and he's sort of right. Soldiers aren't allowed to ask questions. They are just trained to obey orders and carry out missions. Now there's a grey area there and we have had soldiers refuse to deploy to Iraq but in general that's the credo. Bloomberg is comparing the way the left treats soldiers now to the way they treated them in the Vietnam era. War protesters used to harass anyone in uniform as if it's some private's fault there's a war on. That's just stupid. I mean, it's really the stupidest thing about the whole anti-war movement of the Vietnam era. And we had a draft back then! Many of those guys probably didn't want to be in uniform. If those guys had wanted to be soldiers, we wouldn't have needed a draft.

    So today's protesters are very careful not to blame the soldiers. That's basically all he's saying.

    My father served in Vietnam and opposed the war. He got harassed by anti-war protesters who he otherwise would have shared sentiments with. I'm sure he wasn't the only one.

    The treatment of soldiers was one of the best criticisms of the left by the right in that era. Of course it's completely flipped around and now the right wing likes to blame and boo soldiers.

  26. #4226
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    Quote Originally Posted by elthrasher View Post
    So today's protesters are very careful not to blame the soldiers. That's basically all he's saying.

    My father served in Vietnam and opposed the war. He got harassed by anti-war protesters who he otherwise would have shared sentiments with. I'm sure he wasn't the only one.
    Well I agree with your point here - particlarly in the context of the draft and your father. In fact I'm not really in favour of harassing anyone much (even when they did do something obviously wrong) becase it generally isn't very productive. And if the protesters are being less negitive (which i think they are) then that is good.

    Some protesters do still seem to get quite confromtational with police and that probably is also not very productive (except where the objective is baiting them to do somthing stupid I guess...) Although maybe thats just a media impressions created by the fact they dont report all the friendly interactions.

    I got the impression bloomberg was actually trying to piggy back on that idea something a little more. Maybe there wasnt anythign else to it I suppose.
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-09-2011 at 11:44 AM.

  27. #4227
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    Just to delve a little deeper...
    I presume south vietnam was the one making the call here wasn't it? And one could at least make a reasonable philosophical argment that they might have the right to overturn a decision made by the WWII powers about whether their country should be merged (remerged) with another? And that military action to supress that right would not be highly illegitimate. (particlarly since it is proably a fair point that the election would not have been fair - on either side!).

    It seems a little illegitimate in itself that the US would be running around promising what another country will do particlarly in relation to merging that seems like the topic for internal referendums in both states.
    Seems about right. Basically, if the country was going to vote for the communists, then why shouldn't we let them do whatever they like? Let them decide for themselves. On the other hand, the communists in the North pursued "land reform" and killed many innocent people in the process. I can see why an idealist would want to fight back against that injustice and keep it from spreading.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zefelius View Post
    Seems about right. Basically, if the country was going to vote for the communists, then why shouldn't we let them do whatever they like? Let them decide for themselves. On the other hand, the communists in the North pursued "land reform" and killed many innocent people in the process. I can see why an idealist would want to fight back against that injustice and keep it from spreading.
    Yeah, I think the south would have by a large majority rejected communism (i think) they would have been a bit divided between monarchists and republicans and thus neither of those two would have had a chance of a plurality even in a semi fair election (which would have been impossible). Related to that they probably by a large majority would have rejected having the vote. Nth vietnam, of course, could do what it wants (besides invading), althogh even there you can see the point diem would have made -that land reform doesnt generally set the scene for a fair election.

    it would be a bit like if palestine rejected a one state solution and israel accepted it as long as they never had elections again on the back fo the fact that the figured they could win the vote then disenfranchise the west bank. I think that many people may have a slightly hypocritical position about the two situations. Or for that matter the china taiwan sitation (again they were supposed to be merged) or any number of sitations where areas of countries seek independance.

    That is a slightly seperate issue to the fact that Diem managed to make himself wildly unpopular at a later stage.. I wonder how it would have worked if at that point the US had trned to diem and said "you are not really all that legitimate anymore - were packing up all our stuff and going home". I imagine he would have been killed straight away (as he was eventually) and an attempt would have been made to fix whatever policy was at issue.
    Last edited by ScottieX; 10-09-2011 at 09:49 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    well, it's nice that you haven't vanished like grayson. where have you been?
    I have largely disappeared due to significant personal & professional demands of a level of significance dwarfing philosophical ramblings, as much as I might enjoy them.

    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    anyway, the classification of good and evil as presented in the video belongs to the middle ages. it's not true that all palestinians unanimously reject israel's right to exist, though many significant groups in palestine do. however, if we would stop passing moral judgments about people, behaviors, and politics as if we hadn't advanced one bit in the last 400 years, and make use of sociologically and psychologically tenable knowledge instead we might actually see that it's kinda obvious that this negative resentment against israeli policies exists in palestine and elsewhere in the middle east. i say decrease the terrorism, the illegal occupation (which is accepted as such by the international community, even the US), and the arrogant settlement expansions and the negative resentments will decrease.

    i mean who can take a guy seriously that explains decades of human conflict with "it's very simple: it's all the sand n*ggers' fault" but conservatives from the US and other crackpots that are scattered elsewhere in the west?
    My guess is Dennis Prager is measurably more qualified to analyze & comment on the Middle East than you are. Yet, you cling to your own blindness & prejudice, resort to innuendo & insult while ignoring millenia of history, & call it enlightenment. The conclusion about incongruence of Israel's size as a portion of the globe & yet dominance of UN focus (& media) is correct. It's not because Israel is committing human rights abuses on the order of Syria, Saudi Arabia, etc... & other Middle East countries. It's because there is bias in the world order. Frankly, this is nothing new for Jews & is a long standing historical fact. In addition, the conclusion about what would happen if each side separately removed all their weapons is accurate as well. Peace is clearly not the goal & the data, both now & historically, clearly indicates this. The fact you refuse to acknowledge this reality is indicative of the most fundamental absolute truth I know about life: "Believe what you want, it's all we ever do." -- Flemeth, DAO

    Endless debates are worthless. Ultimately, we each choose for ourselves & must accept the consequences of our position(s). In your case, you implicitly moralize building housing as higher moral outrage than the abiding desire to annihilate a race of people, despite the fact that beliefs are much more dangerous than mere rock & stone as you have admitted yourself. Rest assured, I am confident of my predictions that Israel will be at war soon while being equally confident in the absurdity of your assertions of peace in the Middle East & other optimistic beliefs others have expressed like the possibility of a blooming of democracy in the Middle East due to the Arab Spring. It is true you are not alone & possibly even in the majority, but that doesn't make it accurate or truthful. It's one thing to have ideals, it's another to simply refuse the truth. However, that is your choice, you own it.

    best regards,
    Pedal2Metal

    P.S.: It appears that Egypt is nowhere near as close to a working democracy as pundits & others wanted to believe: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/...bdc05f5c056aca
    Go ahead & believe this is a statistical aberration rather than a harbinger of things to come, if facts & reality can't stop you, I certainly can't.
    Last edited by Pedal2Metal; 10-10-2011 at 03:07 PM.

  30. #4230
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    http://gawker.com/5847344/what-every...out-steve-jobs

    Good article. The reader comments are quite a good read as well actually.

    best regards,
    Pedal2Metal

  31. #4231
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedal2Metal View Post
    I have largely disappeared due to significant personal & professional demands of a level of significance dwarfing philosophical ramblings, as much as I might enjoy them.
    well, i missed you already! family and career must be secondary to debates on the internet.

    My guess is Dennis Prager is measurably more qualified to analyze & comment on the Middle East than you are.
    if that's what's important i could easily post a counter link by an equally recognized and established left-wing commentator like chomsky who states the exact opposite of prager. on top of that, we would hear reasonable explanations instead of emotive speeches!

    you should check out pat condell. i think you'd like him except for the fact that he is strictly and insultingly anti-religious.

    Yet, you cling to your own blindness & prejudice, resort to innuendo & insult while ignoring millenia of history, & call it enlightenment. The conclusion about incongruence of Israel's size as a portion of the globe & yet dominance of UN focus (& media) is correct. It's not because Israel is committing human rights abuses on the order of Syria, Saudi Arabia, etc... & other Middle East countries. It's because there is bias in the world order. Frankly, this is nothing new for Jews & is a long standing historical fact. In addition, the conclusion about what would happen if each side separately removed all their weapons is accurate as well. Peace is clearly not the goal & the data, both now & historically, clearly indicates this. The fact you refuse to acknowledge this reality is indicative of the most fundamental absolute truth I know about life: "Believe what you want, it's all we ever do." -- Flemeth, DAO

    Endless debates are worthless. Ultimately, we each choose for ourselves & must accept the consequences of our position(s). In your case, you implicitly moralize building housing as higher moral outrage than the abiding desire to annihilate a race of people, despite the fact that beliefs are much more dangerous than mere rock & stone as you have admitted yourself. Rest assured, I am confident of my predictions that Israel will be at war soon while being equally confident in the absurdity of your assertions of peace in the Middle East & other optimistic beliefs others have expressed like the possibility of a blooming of democracy in the Middle East due to the Arab Spring. It is true you are not alone & possibly even in the majority, but that doesn't make it accurate or truthful. It's one thing to have ideals, it's another to simply refuse the truth. However, that is your choice, you own it.
    i agree with your conclusions. here it begins to be about belief. it seems to be your belief that jews and arabs in the middle east are absolute opposing forces while the arabs take up the role of the inherent moral evil. the conflict exists because the arabs hate jews for no particular reason and refuse to let go of their hatred. this belief is so strong that it probably won't be changed by evidence that indicates a different reality. i don't mean to make this seem as a pejorative statement as the same is true of my belief.

    my fundamental belief here is that humans are less different from each other than most people, such as yourself, believe and that differences between groups are not absolute at all. i am strongly convinced of the fact that beliefs in religious and political dogma are socially inherited and that i and you could be an islamist suicide bomber under the right circumstances. all human conflicts are man made, chosen in a way, and thus not necessary and solvable--if we want to.

    these beliefs precede the more detailed political opinions we have expressed before. so it's not surprising that i would rather listen to someone like chomsky instead of prager while you do the opposite.

    relating to the israeli-palestinian conflict i, hence, believe in two basically equal groups of people wanting and fearing the same. they want to live good lives and protect the lives of themselves and those whom they love. based on beliefs in fundamental differences of the two groups, they fear that they might lose a lot, while recognizing what they have in common with one another would end such a conflict. the basic reason for why i mostly sympathize with the palestinians is that the israelis are more powerful. they have almost all the power they want in order to satisfy their fears, so much power that they have become arrogant. the palestinians cannot possibly make peace under the humiliating conditions that the israelis have "offered" them a few times.

    in the face of this, i also find it understandable that people engage in terrorism. what we in the west define as terrorism is the act of the desperate who has nothing to lose. someone on an anonymous image board wrote something like, "your father, uncle, sister, and son were killed. would you not blow yourself up and take some of those f*ckers with you?" i agree with that statement. and if you accept a more neutral definition of terrorism, you would also acknowledge the constant terror the palestinians face at the hands of israeli soldiers and jewish fundamentalists of which i read every weak in mainstream media.

    P.S.: It appears that Egypt is nowhere near as close to a working democracy as pundits & others wanted to believe: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/...bdc05f5c056aca
    Go ahead & believe this is a statistical aberration rather than a harbinger of things to come, if facts & reality can't stop you, I certainly can't.
    is this supposed to be a statement about arabs not being able to establish a functioning democracy? the terror against christians has existed before the uprising in egypt, do you expect it to suddenly disappear? i find what has happened quite sad but this happens in all areas of the world which aren't as advanced as the west when it comes to human rights. and events like this even happens in western countries every once in a while. not to mention what we do abroad.

  32. #4232
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedal2Metal View Post
    http://gawker.com/5847344/what-every...out-steve-jobs

    Good article. The reader comments are quite a good read as well actually.

    best regards,
    Pedal2Metal
    it was very disgusting to see so many of my facebook friends and mass media hurrying to kiss steve jobs' butt when he died. a positive influence on the world? perhaps for a few self-indulging westerners and rich people with deluxe problems. of course, it is also ridiculous to assume that he came up with all the revolutionary ideas all by himself. concurrently, i wouldn't let jobs take all the blame for the fact that people literally work themselves to death in order to build luxury goods for the top 10-20% of the world or for the other corporate crimes apple commits. but you're whining about one guy dying of cancer? if you have to, mourn the thousands of people who die of cancer everyday or something like that and devote yourself to the treatment of it instead of devoting your life to the worshiping of a trademark, you stupid western consumerist uneducated idiot!

    (not talking to you there pedal )

  33. #4233
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    what we in the west define as terrorism is the act of the desperate who has nothing to lose. someone on an anonymous image board wrote something like, "your father, uncle, sister, and son were killed. would you not blow yourself up and take some of those f*ckers with you?" i agree with that statement.
    But to add a pinch of salt - It is still not the right thing to do, and the vast majority of people in such situations dont do it.

    to me this phrase
    i also find it understandable that people
    is the root of a lot of very bad / dangerous philosophy. Ie that understandable and right are totally different.

    FWIW I remember in early primary school formlating with a friend (mostly him) the theory of Mutally Assured Destruction via threatening a loss of sanity. ahh those playground politics....

  34. #4234
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieX View Post
    But to add a pinch of salt - It is still not the right thing to do, and the vast majority of people in such situations dont do it.

    to me this phrase

    is the root of a lot of very bad / dangerous philosophy. Ie that understandable and right are totally different.

    FWIW I remember in early primary school formlating with a friend (mostly him) the theory of Mutally Assured Destruction via threatening a loss of sanity. ahh those playground politics....
    i don't think this is about right and wrong. such a concept doesn't mean much to someone who's life was devastated. was that devastation right? it doesn't matter. it's all action and reaction. even if we evaluate all this from distance, it's not easily determined who is right and who is wrong either. certainly, many people in the west think they're behaving morally right and so do many in the middle east. is there some objective reality that favors any of those parties? has one of those parties any epistemological advantage over the other as to defining who behaves morally rightly? i doubt it. the only reality we can be certain of is that pain breeds pain.

  35. #4235
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    well I think it can still mean somthing in that most people who had terrible experiences dont blow themselves up in a suicide attack - but if a person has genuinely been so badly damaged that they have absolutely no morality, then that doesnt excuse them from being the problem, in fact they become the personification if the problem* regardless of what facts got them to that point.

    As you said "it's all action and reaction." ie that at a point in time there was always a set of facts from any arbitrary point in the past that resulted in the situation.

    *In this case maybe that is pain creation

  36. #4236
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    anyone else read about the alleged iranian terrorist attack in the US? frankly, when reading that my brain immediately started to conspire that this might be the beginning of a war against iran led by the US and israel. the US government will have to release more information and evidence in order for me to overcome my bias here. what has been released so far is far too thin evidence for them to make such strong claims and accusations.

  37. #4237
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    anyone else read about the alleged iranian terrorist attack in the US? frankly, when reading that my brain immediately started to conspire that this might be the beginning of a war against iran led by the US and israel. the US government will have to release more information and evidence in order for me to overcome my bias here. what has been released so far is far too thin evidence for them to make such strong claims and accusations.
    Well, first of all, no I haven't read about that, but I would have to say that it would be very, very difficult to sell the American public on the idea that we need to get involved in yet another war. Right now support for Israel is high, but if it meant we had to go to war, I think that would melt away real fast. Israel hopefully isn't stupid enough to think they can count on us forever.

  38. #4238
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    I was thinking more of a plan to make the saudi be more friendly towards the USA. Because the average joe american probably doesnt care very much if the saudi envoy is killed or not.

    Now if they can implicate the iranians in the death of steve jobs or michael jackson - then were are talking ...

  39. #4239
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShowtekGER View Post
    anyone else read about the alleged iranian terrorist attack in the US? frankly, when reading that my brain immediately started to conspire that this might be the beginning of a war against iran led by the US and israel. the US government will have to release more information and evidence in order for me to overcome my bias here. what has been released so far is far too thin evidence for them to make such strong claims and accusations.
    My bias is against all the governments.

  40. #4240
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zefelius View Post
    My bias is against all the governments.
    sure, but intuitively it seems to me that the iranian government would have willingly provoked a certain war if they were the ones planning such an attack. at the latest when the act had been committed everybody would know that it was a plot from iran. and they still know that they are no match for the US.

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