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> Are we a reflection of our political fundementals?, Do they indicate our level of education for example.
net2007
post Jun 19 2012, 02:09 PM
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Recently Ive realized I now have two people close to me, who I care about deeply, yet have little in common with politically speaking. One person being my younger sister, the other is my girlfriend Elizabeth who I recently met. They say there are two things you should never discuss with family or friends. That being politics and religion, and I'm starting to understand why.

It's hard to speak openly about things like this when opinions clash yet both people know their beliefs are heart felt and have benefited them in a positive way. The only thing that frustrates me in all of this would be the preconceived notions that many of us hold about those with different opinions.

When I debated heavily on this site a couple years back I remember getting into it with some of the members here, and Id pull up every fact and figure I could to show their was a good reason for my beliefs, and that they were good beliefs. Ive learned it doesn't always work like that though.

I've found that it becomes all to easy to point the finger at the other side and say things like..... your uneducated, you watch too much Fox News, read too much of the NY Times, or your your just flat out wrong and will never get it. From what Ive seen that's how these conversations usually end up, but I still have this eagerness to get my opinion out their and share it with others, so I find myself in a bit of a stalemate.

So I started asking questions that I think are important, and Id like to share some of them here...


1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?



It's my thinking these days that we tend to have more in common with each other than we let on, even if we're on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Sometimes I think it's not so much what we believe, but what impact that belief has had on our lives, if any.

This post has been edited by net2007: Jun 19 2012, 02:39 PM
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Gray Seal
post Jun 19 2012, 03:19 PM
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My first reaction is to the use of the word "beliefs". Beliefs is a good word to use as most people do have a belief based philosophy. Beliefs, in the context of your discussion, is the term to describe basic premises without rationale upon which one builds all philosophical arguments. Beliefs should be avoided. All philosophy should be based upon something; observation, testing, logical deduction.

Beliefs are what separates we humans into camps. As there are many beliefs there equally exists lots of turmoil and conflict. The less rationale making up a belief the greater the potential turmoil.

One of my premises of life is that beliefs are not a good idea.

1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?

A basic premise I have is that people are most successful and fulfilled when they are left to make their own choices.

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?

No. I find that discussions are the only means to changing philosophy. There is always the chance to introduce something a person has not heard before. Dismissive gets you no where. Discussion gives the chance to educate yourself or the other.

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

For sure.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?

Yes. If they are opposite to me they can be a threat to me and I do not care if they are educated or heart felt. Some beliefs are bad and lead people to bad philosophy. Such philosophy where people wish to force me live by their bad beliefs is unwanted and I do not care how heart felt they may be.
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AuthorMusician
post Jun 19 2012, 03:40 PM
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1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?

I grew up in a mining town and started working for money at ten years of age. After graduating high school, the mines were not hiring, and I ended up working for minimum wage at a heavy equipment dealer in the parts department. Rumors of a mine strike led the owners of that company to lay me off, and then they lied on the unemployment comp form, claiming that after nine months of work, I wasn't qualified for the position. The government guy at the unemployment office didn't buy it, so I got my unemployment money. With that I started community college, went on to a four-year school, earned my English degree and went off into the real world to do whatever I could do to earn a living. This involved a couple more minimum-wage jobs before I figured out how to break into the computer business, which was just starting to become a major industry. Tech writer to mainframe systems programmer to CBT designer to Unix systems admin, and then along came the high-tech bubble burst. Bounced around on temporary contracts for a time, then got too old and the economy went into meltdown mode. Now I'm a freelance writer working for whatever I can bring in, which hasn't been a whole lot. Lots of competition out there, and it's especially bad with the high unemployment rate.

Along the way I learned that people are freaking crooks, especially those tied deeply into business, and that you can't trust hardly anyone else. Still, I made myself from a working class hero into a computer professional and published author. You'd think I'd be Republican from that, but no, I'm a Democrat. It's because too much money equates to too much power, and too much power corrupts people. Ergo, there have to be laws reigning in that power.

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?

Oh sure, mostly those who have been born into money and power and who have been given breaks by their relatives, also known as nepotism. I dismiss their ideas as being based entirely upon an artificial life that did not challenge them to actually do what they want others to do. An example is to pull oneself up by the bootstraps, which I have done more than once in my life. The thing I found is that whenever you reach for something better, there are a whole lot of people who will fight hard against you and a handful who might help you out, usually for money. Eh, they're shysters, every last one of them. But then, if a person keeps on trying, there might come the kind soul who has been down this path too, and things actually start to pop.

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

Not in politics but in religion. I've borrowed from all the greats and the not so great to come up with a notion of spirituality that also meshes with physics. In politics I'm a Democrat and go along with most of the party platform planks. I have one remaining brother who is a Republican, even though our father got him the sweet job in the mines, a plant electrician, and his union made sure he received extra money for overtime and holiday work.

All I have to say about that is go figure. People are often not very logical.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?

Sure, but the actual education anyone gets is in the school of hard knocks. Even doctors have to go through lengthy internships to find out how to practice medicine on living, breathing, flesh&blood people. Lawyers have to get their courtroom licks in before they can be any good. Writers have to produce mountains of crumpled up pages before a book congeals, although today it's a few gigs of data. I haven't crumpled a page for decades.

Higher education is great up to a point. After that it's all about real life experiences. I have known educated fools and working class geniuses. I have also known idealists both on the right and left side of politics, and those types are extremely untrustworthy. Their minds are made up no matter what reality places right under their noses.

While in college I told a feminist reporter that women who want to go the hardcore business route and fight their ways to the top will end up like the men already there, basically aging faster than normal and having all kinds of health problems. She didn't like that, but as the decades unfolded, that's exactly what happened. During my junior year, 1974, I predicted in a debate class that a conservative backlash was coming. This was poo-pooed by the class, so I lost that debate but was confirmed correct by 1980. Heh, lost the debate but still got an A for the class.

These people held heart-felt beliefs that turned out to be wrong. I've noticed that this happens more often than not, that human belief almost always heads into the rocks of reality. Belief needs to be supported by rational thought and evidence in reality. Just wishing the world was such-and-so never cuts it.

Both sides of politics fall into that trap, and they merely take turns doing it. In the 1960s and 70s, they were Democrats. Today they are Republicans. Maybe what we need is an Empiricist Party, one that embraces science and looks for policies that work, while not being too concerned about why they work. Heh, that in itself is an idealism, an assumption that people are basically logical creatures. We are not. We are, not far beneath our skins, seething cauldrons of contentious emotions, walking contradictions, partly truth and partly fiction (great song lyric there). Even Wall Street went crawling to socialism when it got its butt in a sling. Now it's back to the old arrogance that got itself there, and so it goes.

Anyway, good luck. Sometimes couples made up of very different people do work, although down the road somebody tends to become dominant. That is a whole other story.

This post has been edited by AuthorMusician: Jun 19 2012, 03:46 PM
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Julian
post Jun 20 2012, 05:17 PM
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Nice topic net2007

1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?

Well, some of them are
  • that society works better the more freedom people have but any freedom whose exercise actively harms or sets back anyone else is not freedom at all, but oppression. So anyone is free to get rich or richer, but if it's done by reducing staff wages or sacking people alone (I'm not foolish enough to think they shouldn't be part of the business armoury) your freedom to prosper is harming someone else's.
  • Less unequal societies tend to allow people to feel happier and more fulfilled than more unequal ones, and happiness and fulfilment can and should be held in more esteem as measures of success than GDP, inflation, employment rates, etc.
  • The facts that life is not fair and nature is red in tooth and claw - and they are both facts - do not axiomatically mean that we should run our society along the same lines. Quite the reverse - our big brains mean that, when we try, and we
  • Private industry is no more axiomatically efficient than the public sector is axiomatically inefficient. The efficiencies of both depend more on the quality of management skills employed within their organisations than on the profit motive, not least because the current paradigm of management remuneration (in both sectors) is only tangentially related to either management skills brought to bear or on profits generated.
  • The agency theory of management is badly flawed and urgently in need of correction
  • Professional politicians tend to have the interest of professional politicians most close to their heart. However, the 18th Century ideal of the gentleman amateur is what created the need for professional politicians in the first place, so the ideal today is a class of professional politicians with real-world experience, within constraints on their behaviour that are designed to maximise their effectiveness in representing the people that vote for them and not those of the people that fund them
  • Similarly to my last point, we have had unregulated markets in the past, and they did indeed grow and innovate much faster within no input from government. However, they also generated sufficient human misery (through lax safety for workers and consumers, for instance) for the idea of regulation to be born. And such markets did not react fast enough to curb their abuses through market forces alone. Government intervention is not, therefore, automatically government interference. It can be, but it is not anything close to being an automatic ill
  • Sovereignty should derive from and rest with the people, and not with any personification, either inherited, nominated or elected.

That's just a few - the ones that sprang to mind.

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?

Occasionally. I am fairly dismissive of people who don't appear able to learn, or with anyone who expect someone else to do their thinking for them (especially if it's me they have the expectation of). I'm pretty dismissive of people who discount evidence that contradicts their cherished ideas because it contradicts them, rather than admitting the possibility that they might be wrong. (The current UK government seems even more prone to this than the Blair or Thatcher eras, and they were bad enough. In fact, while I disagreed with most of their conclusions, the Thatcher government was occasionally and genuinely open to change in the face of evidence, but then for all her other faults, Mrs Thatcher at least had the mind of a trained scientist mrsparkle.gif)

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

Yes; in fact, I'm not sure I've ever had a genuinely original idea of my own.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?

Absolutely. Disagreeing with me is not evidence of stupidity (though it's often a strong indicator wink.gif), but we must all admit that we can be wrong ourselves. And if even we can be wrong, how much more likely is it that the heart-felt beliefs of our educated opponents can be wrong too? devil.gif


QUOTE
It's my thinking these days that we tend to have more in common with each other than we let on, even if we're on opposite ends of the political spectrum


That's very true - I think to a certain degree that the normal human tendency to gravitate towards people you have a lot in common with, facilitated by today's modern fragmented, segmented media and the availability of all shades of opinion through the internet makes it even easier to forget the commonalities than it used to be when nearly everyone you came across read the same few newspapers and watched the same few TV news channels as you did. Once you're in one of those little news ghettoes, the descriptions that they use among themselves to describe outsiders focus more and more on the differences and less and less on the commonalities.

This is human nature - it was easy to believe, by the people of Hartlepool, that a shipwrecked monkey was a French spy, because they had no other source of information, and the paranoia of the time was that the French were the demonic, 'alien' enemy. Not a million miles away from attacking a Sikh American in 2002 because he wore a turban and looked brown.
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cicero
post Jun 21 2012, 04:20 AM
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1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?

I have a healthy distrust of corporations, government, and democracy. Majority rule is not always right or good. Corporations do pose a threat to our health, political system, and overall society. Government, when it is too big it poses threats to our liberties and rights and when it is too small it is incapable and/or indifferent to help those in need.

On the same token, we have to live with corporations which are engines of the global economy and are capable of doing good in society beyond just giving people jobs. Government that is accountable, transparent, efficient, effective, ethical, and conscious is the best kind of government. That means ending all the big money in politics, removing corporate influences, reforming party politics, and other important aspects that will ensure that the people are better represented. As for the masses, democracy has its place but the minority in this country must be defended.

I believe that freedom in the mind is the most powerful freedom of all. We need to view liberty beyond choice and free speech as the masses can and have easily become drunken by such liberties. Restraint i.e. in sociological terms “delayed gratification” is part of the answer to living a happy, prosperous, moral, free and virtuous lifestyle. I am a Christian and also study Stoicism.

The U.S. Constitution is the most sacred and valued document by the United States that must be protected. Sure it is the principles that we value but the document, the written word is just as valuable.

I look up to and try to emulate, in the most positive fashion, men like Marcus Aurelius, Theodore Roosevelt, Louis Brandeis, and Marcus Tullius Cicero. I believe in solution-oriented politics not just pure ideological ones. The idea that you cannot be both conservative and liberal is hogwash.

People who do not know me would say I am a centrist, which is fine because I believe in a balance but I prefer conservatively progressive. Tradition is important as I truly believe that there are universal truths that have been carried down throughout human history for a reason. We should respect or, at least, take notice of those traditions before simply trashing them. However, society must progress towards more positive liberty and justice. We live in ever changing world that is face with immense challenges. The founders for example could have imagined little the idea of how corporations, once charters of the state, would become these nearly independent multi-national entities that have more money than most nations.

My politics is all over the place but I believe it to be consistent. I value individuals more than institutions but respect the authority of institutions enough to understand that they too have a job to do in our society. It is all about balance; however, there will be times when one side outweighs the other and in my opinion that should be individuals. I hold that belief in my political, legal, and social views. People over entities it just depends how much sometimes.

I came to this viewpoint after years of stupidity, study, and my family. In my most downtrodden of times it was Theodore Roosevelt's autobiography that lifted me from the ashes. Thank God I am at where I am at, no longer blind as I can now see. There is a book called, The Art of Manliness: Manvotionals, which I try to read everyday along with the Bible and Meditations or The Enchiridion by Epictetus. I wake up every morning with the goal to live a virtuous life. I believe our society would be better if we had a culture built on the foundation of virtues not pleasure and distraction.

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?

I listen but some people are just wrong.

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

Yes, along with my own original thoughts.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?

Yes but even the educated and heartfelt can be wrong.
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lederuvdapac
post Jun 21 2012, 06:21 PM
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1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?


I can be deemed a minarchist. That means I advocate the minimum amount of government necessary in order to protect civil liberties, economic liberties, enforce laws, property rights and and protect citizens. I am unable to pass into the realm of anarcho-capitalism because I am not convinced that the market is proper for issues of law where the issue of transaction costs plays a major role.

My political beliefs are based on ethics. Ethics are universal principles. This means that what applies to Joe also applies to Sally. It also means that the same rules apply on Monday as they do on Friday. Ethics need to be both universal and consistent in order to have any true philosophical meaning. The State is a giant ethical contradiction. The State is a magical fiction that we create in our heads. The State isn't real. The borders on a map aren't real. People are real. Trees are real. The Government is a fiction whereby we endow certain individuals with special powers that none of the rest of us enjoy. Everyone on ad.gif agrees with a basic form of ethics. We teach it to young children. Don't hurt one another. Don't steal from one another. These principles are ethically valid and almost universally accepted. However, when it comes to the State - people do mental gymnastics in order to ignore the very basic ethical truths they accept in their private lives. Most people recognize that the State exists to kill and to steal and to violate our rights. However, they justify it. They create further imaginary constructs such as the "social contract." They say that killing is wrong, stealing is wrong, except when it isn't. To illustrate this, I point to the wonderful video "George Ought to Help." It wonderfully illustrates the ethical dilemma that the State poses.

We create this "social contract" despite the fact that nobody can define what is in the contract, nobody can amend the contract, nobody every agreed to any contract, and in no other instance of human existence is such a thing enforceable. If I came up to you and told you that you and I had a social contract that meant you give me $100 every week - you would laugh in my face. You would say you never agreed to such a thing and that there is nothing enforceable. Well, think of how absurd my proposal would be to you and now you can understand how absurd any proposal regarding a "social contract" sounds to me.

The point is that the State exists to violate the ethical principles we supposedly adhere to. It is a way for people to get away with violating ethics without every having to do the violation themselves. That is why we have "democracy" and "republics." People vote for policies and vote for politicians to do the dirty work they would never dream of doing in their private lives. So when people say "we should raise taxes on the rich." What they are actually saying is that "I think that someone else should go to this person's house and take a larger percentage of their property and if that person refuses, they should be taken to jail by force if necessary." Nobody would seriously consider going to a person's house themselves and demanding payment. Can you imagine that? I would love to see some of the people on these boards walk around their neighborhood, knocking on doors, demanding their tax dollars rather than letting the IRS take care of it. It would be even more lovely when their neighbors came knocking on their door!

Ok, so what is the point? The point is that, as Frederic Bastiat put it, everyone wants to live at the expense of the state, but they don't realize that the State lives at the expense of everyone. It also acts as a ethical shield against the actual decisions that are being made. People have no qualms about voting for this or that because the principles of democracy shield them from the actual effects. This inevitably leads to a concentration of power and an entire class of people who want to capture that power for their own ends. One of the famous memes that we see is that people are evil, therefore we need government to regulate that. But who is the government going to be filled with? People! The contradiction is just astounding. How do we start from the position that people are inherently evil and therefore we need to give a small elite group of people ultimate monopoly power on violence and resources? How do you justify that in your head?

It is precisely because people are evil that we should restrict the power of government to those activities that protect liberty such as administration of courts and law enforcement. Because once we get into the social engineering and welfarism - special interests inherently capture the apparatus of power and exploit the rest of the populace. After some groups capture government, other groups want more and eventually we have a government like the one today - where everyone is getting a slice of the pie and the expense of everyone else. Politicians know that the one who makes the most promises wins. It doesn't matter if what they promise will actually work - THAT ISN'T THE POINT. When all of the fanciful programs like SS and Medicare have their inevitable disastrous effect, the politicians who enacted those policies will be long retired and be remembered for their intentions rather than actual results of their policies. Once these programs are established and the interest groups are entrenched, it becomes virtually impossible to remove them. The debate switches. It is no longer a question of the government versus the people i.e. the extent of government's power and whether the programs enacted have any utility. It becomes a debate between groups. Seniors v. young people. Upper class v. lower class. And right down the line. Despite the fiscal train wreck we are about to experience, we can't repeal Medicare because "then seniors won't get their medicine." When faced with a calamity created by government, we double down, which inevitably causes more problems and further entrenches the dependency of the populace.

Ok, so what is the point? The point is that we should be moving towards a society that interacts with each other peacefully through market cooperation instead of relying on government violence to achieve our ends. It is the only ethical, logical, and humane way to deal with human interaction. We can't have a system where the populace is dependent on the government because it will/is bankrupting us. I believe that the justifications and 7th Grade glamourizations of government power must come to an end. It may already be too late. People usually don't realize the folly of their ways until it is too late and this is no exception. When the government ultimately bankrupts us and our economy sucks - it will again force us to turn on each other instead of focusing on the arbitrary and unjust government that we have been endorsing for so long.


2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?

Often. This is because people usually believe that the government has special powers in which it can wave a magic wand and solve problems. Examples include price controls (minimum wage), subsidies, regulations, etc... People fail to recognize the incentives involved in government bureaucracy and special interest politics. People cling to their 7th Grade Social Studies Textbook and to speeches by JFK to form their opinion of government. The solution is always government legislation. As if the hundreds of thousands of pages of laws and regulations on the books aren't enough.

But the worst is when people think the system is somehow broken. This implies that the system is a little off but that it can actually work well with a few tweaks. Those tweaks include memes like "bipartisanship," "cooperation," and the "general welfare." And most importantly, that things would change if this party or that party were in office. What a load fo nonsense.

The system isn't broken, it is working exactly as it is supposed to. That is how you can really split people down the line in terms of their understanding of government. Our system exists to exploit the populace to benefit small special interests. Whether they are Bankers, or Corporate Agricultural firms or the prison industrial complex or the defense industrial complex, or any other of the multitude of special interests - the system is working to make them better off at our expense. The more government we have, the more that special interests will seek rents. It is the inevitable trajectory of the State.

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

Sure. Just check my first post on ad.gif 8 years ago or so and compare it to now. Views change as you come to understand the world better. When I read The Road to Serfdom by Friedrich Hayek, I went from a Bush-supporting conservative to a classical liberal. Now I am a minarchist. I don't really see my views changing much for the rest of my life. Once you see the State for what it really is - it is difficult to unsee it. It is difficult to look at an Obama or Romney and actually think they are different or will make changes. It is difficult to see a Democrat or Republican without utter disdain for their sheepish ways.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?


Absolutely. I always say that some ideas are so bad that only smart people can believe them.

Ultimately, we aren't a reflection of our political fundamentals per se. Our politics and our personalities are a reflection of our genetic makeup and our upbringing. Some people are predisposed to be subserviant to authoritarians, whether they be parents or government. Many people are taught never to question authority or to actually think for themselves. So the thought of individuals cooperating peacefully to achieve mutually beneficial ends seems foreign. It is difficult to accept that things can be accomplished without government force behind it. There needs to be a plan - even if that plan comes from some politician from Nebraska who you would never trust to run a Taco Bell let alone the country. We will probably never shake our compulsion to dominate others and always look to our "leaders" to solve our problems. And when they create more problems than they solve, we will vote in another batch of "leaders" who will continue to do the same. And that is the story.
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Dingo
post Jun 21 2012, 07:31 PM
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1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?
I believe we are born uncorrupted but with lots of needs and fears and with that in mind are practically infinitely corruptible. I have no doubt some of my concern for overpopulation comes from a desire to diminish the bad that human beings are capable of.

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?
Haven't we all? It does give you a chance to reexamine what you think and whether the appropriate relevant facts are in place. There does seem to be a world view comfort zone that folks like to stay in and resist straying far from much like a junkie needs to be near his fix. It particularly shows up in unsupportable conspiracy theories. They have the force of religion, but then is not the Devil the ultimate conspiracy promoter against the good. Okay I won't stray any further. devil.gif

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?
More often I have a little epiphany from another's personal experience which causes me to modify my thinking. Advocacy in argument is usually just somebody trying to get over and yeah I generally pretty much chock it up to pushing one's ego or at least self-centered world view.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?
One can do a lot with what one means by "well educated." Usually the problem is with someone who is well educated in a narrow sense. There really is no substitute for some life experience. As far as "heart felt" you can believe in the Green Hornet God in a heart felt way. Let's say I prefer evidence and common sense.


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net2007
post Jun 22 2012, 01:18 AM
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QUOTE(Julian @ Jun 20 2012, 01:17 PM) *
The facts that life is not fair and nature is red in tooth and claw - and they are both facts - do not axiomatically mean that we should run our society along the same lines. Quite the reverse - our big brains mean that, when we try, and we


I wanted to jump on this belief you hold in particular because it is one of mine that actually changed over time. Up until perhaps a few years back I believed, and felt optimistic in believing that human beings can go as far as to create a utopia on earth, and perhaps even in space. That everything war, violence, hate, racism could all be a thing of the past and perhaps everybody could be treated equally.

I still hold on to some of this, but I'm not so optimistic anymore. I believe its a good thing to believe in, that we should certainly strive for, but IMO it probably wont happen. Personally I shifted focus to we should minimize the damage done because of those impulsive animal instincts, and try to make the best of it. In other words helping a friend in need after a tragic murder, would make more sense than outlawing the weapon used in the murder. That's me though, not to get into a debate about it but it is one case where one of my opinions drastically changed.

To tell you the truth I don't actually remember what influence changed that belief in me.


QUOTE
3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?

Yes; in fact, I'm not sure I've ever had a genuinely original idea of my own.


lol, well said. I don't think many of us have, I sure haven't





Dingo

QUOTE(Dingo @ Jun 21 2012, 03:31 PM) *
1. What are some of your political beliefs, more importantly why do you hold them?
I believe we are born uncorrupted but with lots of needs and fears and with that in mind are practically infinitely corruptible. I have no doubt some of my concern for overpopulation comes from a desire to diminish the bad that human beings are capable of.

2. Have you ever found yourself overly dismissive with those who don't hold your beliefs?
Haven't we all? It does give you a chance to reexamine what you think and whether the appropriate relevant facts are in place. There does seem to be a world view comfort zone that folks like to stay in and resist straying far from much like a junkie needs to be near his fix. It particularly shows up in unsupportable conspiracy theories. They have the force of religion, but then is not the Devil the ultimate conspiracy promoter against the good. Okay I won't stray any further. devil.gif

3. Have you ever taken the best of another's beliefs and incorporated them into yours?
More often I have a little epiphany from another's personal experience which causes me to modify my thinking. Advocacy in argument is usually just somebody trying to get over and yeah I generally pretty much chock it up to pushing one's ego or at least self-centered world view.

4. Do you think its possible that someone with opposite political beliefs can be both well educated and heart felt?
One can do a lot with what one means by "well educated." Usually the problem is with someone who is well educated in a narrow sense. There really is no substitute for some life experience. As far as "heart felt" you can believe in the Green Hornet God in a heart felt way. Let's say I prefer evidence and common sense.


In question number 4 I think I was getting at..... can someone opposite be both well educated and compassionate/heart felt in their belief. So in other words they not only have their emotions invested in the idea but they have sound information to back what they feel. If its just a feeling I agree you can easily be misguided by a feeling, also as far as information goes it can be misinterpreted.

I guess the premise behind this kind of question is to encourage others and myself to let go of just a little of our pride and consider that we could be wrong, or even if we're right there are usually good reasons why others believe what they do and this should be taken into consideration as well.

It's also true in many cases that something that isn't necessarily true can be a belief that benefits someone else. For example who has it right in the religious community, or do they all have it wrong and their is no God? I'm to the point where I say it doesn't really matter, holding a belief can sometimes be as important as the facts to back it.

Gray Seal

QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Jun 19 2012, 11:19 AM) *
My first reaction is to the use of the word "beliefs". Beliefs is a good word to use as most people do have a belief based philosophy. Beliefs, in the context of your discussion, is the term to describe basic premises without rationale upon which one builds all philosophical arguments. Beliefs should be avoided. All philosophy should be based upon something; observation, testing, logical deduction.

Beliefs are what separates we humans into camps. As there are many beliefs there equally exists lots of turmoil and conflict. The less rationale making up a belief the greater the potential turmoil.

One of my premises of life is that beliefs are not a good idea.


I cant say I agree with this, but I think I know where your coming from with it. You believe this because beliefs that aren't founded in reality, can be damaging. This is true, but I also think they can be beneficial in many circumstances therefore will always be important. I mean, if someone is terminally ill it might very well help them emotionally to believe that they can beat the disease they have, even if the doctors say they have 3 months to live.

I briefly brought up religion as another example but you are right when you say beliefs can be dangerous.







What triggered this forum....

Recently I had a political discussion that made me think how quick pride can kill a debate. I heard someone talking about Obama's job creation, I wont go into details because I don't want a long drawn out debate on it but let me just say that it was the shortest political debate Ive ever had.

The other person said that his position was cold hard fact, and their is no other way to look at it, it's just fact. I also heard something about how people shouldn't get their opinions from Fox News, which I agree with, you should mix up your sources at the very least. I end up blurting out.... I don't really know, I'll have to look it up, but I do think Obama is a robot designed by an alien spices.

Ok, I know that comment of mine is off the wall and not relevant, but it was funny. Given the fact that his position was cold hard fact, and I wasn't at my convenience to research it I figured it was discussion over, my input wouldn't have mattered here if I even had input.

Most frustrating part of that was the fact that he wasn't aware of my position on that topic, or where I got my information from. All he did know was that I was not an Obama supporter.

I figure Ive put my hours in on politics enough on sites like this to know that cold hard facts are only as good as those who are their to interpret them. At any rate this was one of many situations where a political debate went absolutely nowhere. Both sides do it, because Ive herd myself blurt out similar comments in the past. "Cold hard fact, not debatable"

only problem with that type of mindset is that you put yourself in a position where you can take on no new information on the topic at hand.

This post has been edited by net2007: Jun 22 2012, 01:26 AM
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net2007
post Aug 3 2012, 11:40 AM
Post #9


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lederuvdapac

Im going to break his reply above down into quotes and give basic responses to them, whether or not I agree, and ask questions on some of them.

QUOTE
"I advocate the minimum amount of government necessary in order to protect civil liberties, economic liberties, enforce laws, property rights and and protect citizens."


So do I, this belief is also at the core of conservatism.

QUOTE
"Ethics are universal principles. This means that what applies to Joe also applies to Sally."


I agree with this as well very strongly. It often comes up for me in race related debates, where I want the same rules to apply to all races. I'm not a fan of affirmative action as it's currently practiced by the left wing in many cases. However the idea behind it is solid, everyone should be given equal opportunity.

QUOTE
It also means that the same rules apply on Monday as they do on Friday.


This sounds a lot like president Bush's consistency in the Iraq war. The end goal always stayed the same by that administration although the tactics in that war changed. Generally speaking he was a very consistent president.

QUOTE
The State is a magical fiction that we create in our heads. The State isn't real. The borders on a map aren't real. People are real. Trees are real. The Government is a fiction whereby we endow certain individuals with special powers that none of the rest of us enjoy.


I agree strongly with the fact that people are real, I'm sure everyone who is sane does believe this, but I disagree when you say the the state Isn't real. I believe to some extent it is. Why? Because its composed of people.

QUOTE
The point is that we should be moving towards a society that interacts with each other peacefully through market corporation instead of relying on government violence to achieve our ends. It is the only ethical, logical, and humane way to deal with human interaction. We can't have a system where the populace is dependent on the government because it will/is bankrupting us.


This one is complicated because it works both ways. What your saying sounds better in theory to me than it does in current reality. Its a possibility far down the line, but as of now no. To debate the other side of this people outside the government do inhumane things, and are dependent on corporations and powerful social groups which can be corrupt.

The government is nothing more to me than a way to organize these groups to achieve some common goal. Although as a conservative I do believe the government currently has too much power, and should be reduced in many areas, but it shouldn't be done away with. We wouldn't have landed on the moon without organizing our efforts. No single corporation or social group is currently strong enough to do that. Together we are strong.

QUOTE
Ultimately, we aren't a reflection of our political fundamentals per se. Our politics and our personalities are a reflection of our genetic makeup and our upbringing.


Right, personally I think political fundamentals are misinterpreted too much to go as far as to say they are a reflection of us. I definitely agree, I think it was one of the primary points behind my thread. People should understand individuals not their political label necessarily.

This post has been edited by net2007: Aug 3 2012, 11:52 AM
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