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> Psychological Projection in Politics, a growing concern?, This will cover hypocrisy and double standards as well.
net2007
post Nov 20 2017, 04:19 AM
Post #1


********
Millennium Mark

Group: Members
Posts: 1,227
Member No.: 7,629
Joined: April-27-07

From: North Carolina
Gender: Male
Politics: Slightly Conservative
Party affiliation: Republican



Sorry in advance for the length of this, I'll try to make it worth a read. It'll get heated at times but I come in peace tongue.gif

As Americans, we live in a time where some are so politically polarized that they meltdown if they hear someone who doesn't think or look like they do. In the really bad cases, you'll see a lot of projection. In psychological terms, projection is when someone feels or behaves the same way as those they criticize or encourage, (it can work both ways). Negative projection is a self-defense mechanism and can be a form of venting for those who are unhappy with one or more aspects of their life, (Why acknowledge a hate or dislike of yourself when you can project those feelings onto others)? While projection is a good distraction, it prevents those who do it from fixing the root causes of their problems.

In politics, a word that's fairly similar and commonly used, (often by conservatives and independents), is hypocrisy. It's a common argument made by the right that the left is often hypocritical, so as a moderate conservative I'm going to explain this from a right of center perspective. I welcome the left to counter or contribute ideas.

I believe the focus on hypocrisy is understandable, especially regarding the lefts biggest issues and self-proclaimed mindsets. For example, being inclusive by respecting those who are different or at a disadvantage is thought to be central to the left. Closely linked to inclusivity is the idea of being respectful towards women and further down I'll also explain a few other positions where I believe the idea of hypocrisy or "projection" is a criticism that's fair to make in regards to the left.

The right and Republicans often project as well but the difference here is that they don't claim to be the party of inclusivity, at least not as commonly as the left does. (Covered largely in sections 4 and 5 below), inclusivity is a concept that often dominates in American politics because it filters into various policies, that's why it's so important and it's why the right is concerned, (not with the concept of inclusion itself, but with the misuse of that word). I believe the left, as a whole, is usually more vocal with their opinions as well, especially when you subtract Donald Trump. tongue.gif Being more vocal means left-wing projection comes more frequently and from many directions. (Ask if you want me to break that down more.)

With all of that out of the way, below I'm going to explain key areas where I believe the left is projecting their own behavior onto others, or otherwise pushing a double standard....


1.

Many leftists complain about Fox News bias and have a half dozen cute names for that network yet they can usually count on CNN, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, and CBS just to name major networks comparable to Fox. Conservatives invent names like Clinton News Network and have hypocrisy issues of their own but look at how many networks back the left, they have an advantage in the News Media and are therefore pushing a larger double standard if they can't call those networks out yet make charges of bias against right-wing media. In the following thread, I've debated the media and shared substantiation that it's left-leaning in the opening post and in a few replies, so I'll keep this one short....

http://www.americasdebate.com/forums/index...#entry100035097

2.

Some groups on the left portray Christians as an unfair or dangerous group who's persecuting others. Particularly Atheists which is a group that thrives on the left, not to mention progressives who have trouble putting focus on Muslim terrorists but often complain about Christianity. I don't know about the members here but I haven't heard anything about abortion clinic bombings lately, from what I can tell Christians today are largely on the defense, not only in America but across the world....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytdMUddGe-U&t=29s

This short video shares some data and information on what's happening. It describes Christians as the most persecuted religious group in the world today. I'm not sure if they're the "most" persecuted but they make a convincing case that it's certainly a problem. To paraphrase the video...

QUOTE
(In North Africa and the Middle East the number of Christians has dropped from 20% to 4% and much of that decline has happened recently. This is due to events like church bombings and attacks on individuals. For example in 2013, in Egypt alone, 80 churches were attacked and destroyed. This isn't uncommon either, it's a widespread problem. Even in moderate Middle Eastern nations like Morocco, Indonesia, Malaysia, Kasikstan and Uzbekistan, Christain minorities are under legal pressure not to build churches or evangelize.) (not a direct quote, see video above)
The video gets much more detailed than I did.

I'm not a Christian or religious but I have a problem with injustice. This topic should be covered more than it is, it's an enormous human rights issue that too many people don't know the extent of because Christians are considered a group who persecute, rather than a group who's being persecuted. I'm not saying there's no longer a judgemental aspect to Christianity but times are changing in many ways.

To mention Atheists, is it hypocritical for them to focus the majority of their claims of violence on the religious when Joseph Stalin was an Atheist who targeted Christians and was responsible for more deaths than Hitler? Just a few days ago Devin Patrick Kelley, (an Atheist), barged into a church in Texas and killed 26 people. Does anyone know of a situation, in recent history, where an American Christian killed 26 people or more because they held different values or beliefs? I don't, but share this information if you have it, I'm usually willing to refine my beliefs.

To be clear, most Atheists and Christians don't act like that but it's a problem, especially when combined with the insults that fly back and forth which get us into these situations. I should also state that there are Christians on the left and not all Atheists are leftists but every survey I've read either suggest that the majority of them are, or that there's a huge difference between the left and right. I believe this is readily agreed upon so, in short, the left often criticises Christian conservatives, talks about how dumb or dangerous they are while Atheist and Muslims are more prone to getting a passes.

3.

The left often hounds Trump for dishonest behavior, and while they sometimes get it right, they've embraced the Clintons who are one of the most, if not the most, dishonest political duos in America today. Allegations in regards to Hillary's dishonesty date back decades to when she was a lawyer and there was less partisan politics involved with the charges made. Those who defend her adamantly would be surprised how many of the allegations over the years have been true. Fast forward to today, former presidential candidate Lincoln Chafee is one of the latest prominent Democrats who is suggesting she rigged the primary for her own benefit. Things are falling apart for her fast, nearly every day I see someone come out against her or hear about a new piece of the puzzle in regards to one of her scandals and not all of that is coming from the right.

Even with that, so many people on the left that I've heard from are still dismissing what she did during the primaries, along with other scandals she's involved in and there is no shortage of them. Some will hound Trump over anything, even things which are fabricated such as the fake Russian dossier that the Hillary campaign paid for. Others, including Hillary, mention fact-checking a lot for Trump but the double standard is clear proof that their charges are often politically motivated because Hillary and some of the defenses of her have also needed fact-checking. This is to say nothing about Bill who I'll mention below.

4.

To talk about sexual harassment, some on the left condemn the right and are quick to label conservatives as disrespectful towards women while they lecture others on how to behave. This is very evident in Hollywood but what are celebrities thinking with that?!? It's like an alcoholic who's drinking yelling at another drinker telling him he's a loser for doing so. Celebrities who are doing this often have no concept of self-reflection, it's too often about what someone else is doing while they're entitled to whatever the hell they want. Sorry for the ranting on that but conservatives have had to hear that they don't value women for a long time. However, sexual harassment on the left is widespread just as with every other group, not to mention a fair amount of discrimination against Conservative women and women who choose not to work.

Outside of Hollywood, the sexual harassment charges against Bill Clinton have resurfaced with prominent Democrats now calling him out. It's a problem that goes as deep as allegations of rape. Where on earth have leftists who are only now condemning Bill Clinton been? Conservatives were portrayed as conspiracy theorists and the victims were ridiculed and described as liars for decades! Don't get me wrong, I'm glad Bill is starting to be held accountable by the left but this new wave of condemnation of the Clintons is only happening now that they have virtually no power or ability to lead. It's now become safe to call them out on serious allegations. That just comes off as defending a movement no matter what happens, later to be honest when it doesn't matter as much. I'm glad we're seeing at least some honesty in regards to the Clintons but it makes me wonder if, for example, there are leftists pushing this Trump/Russia collusion narrative without believing in it. The possibility that someone is projecting their own frustrations or guilt seems more likely when there isn't a factual basis behind an argument.

5.

This is a big one, the left points to groups like the KKK or White Nationalists and talks about how divisive and dangerous they are, and they use that as an arguing point against the right. While I agree that we certainly need to be concerned, yet again there's little self-reflection.

In order to make this seem like an epidemic, some have decided to rewrite the rules on what qualifies as a White Supremacist. It's no longer about actual White Supremacists who join a movement. To some if you're a Trump supporter you're a White Supremacist, that's it, that's all it takes in the eyes of some! Trump supporters are lumped together with a group that few people respect and most people, understandably, hate. I didn't vote for Trump and question some of his actions, but here again I have a problem with injustice. Both sides need to be called out for divisive rhetoric and violent actions.

I'm not going to say that there isn't a rise in hateful rhetoric over the last 9 years from White Supremacist groups, but they're not the movements they once were by any stretch. Furthermore, this is indeed happening on "both sides". Left-wing protesting movements have exploded in size and divisive, hateful, and often violent rhetoric and behavior. Groups which are going largely unchecked by the left are on a regular basis, dividing Americans if not assaulting those they disagree with. If anybody needs proof of that, I can accommodate you easily but keep in mind that the details are so bad in certain circumstances that if this were taken seriously more people would rethink where the left currently stands on inclusivity.

Having said that, these events aren't a fair description of leftist protesters as a whole but too many individuals are straying from the concept of rational and civil conversations, It's clear that things are getting worse. Antifa violence is common, Black Lives Matter is less violent by comparison but they also divide with hateful rhetoric and by encouraging violence on Cops. Outside of these movements, random acts of violence from leftists are also on the rise yet by some stretch, the right has the label of intolerant and the left has the label of inclusive. Growing hate groups on the left often simply don't know or don't want to know, that America as a whole is in trouble, with many sides contributing to the problems we see.

To wrap this up, the left is never going to be trusted as a group who advocates equal treatment of others or a group who's inclusive if they're not living by example. Inclusion doesn't mean attacking Black Conservatives, Female Conservatives, Whites, Cops, Christians, the Upper Class, Trump Supporters, Conservative College Students, etc etc. It doesn't mean supporting only groups who sympathize with you, that's not progressive, it's a continuation of a very old problem.

I respect those on the left who aren't pushing problems they have onto others. I believe that if you're a civil and respectful person, that it's okay to call out conservatives when they've been disrespectful or uncivil. For leftists who are disrespectful and uncivil, it's still okay for you to call out the right for that behavior, it's America, but in the eyes of most, you're illegitimate and won't get through to anyone other than those who, more or less, agree with you already. To the Julian's and Vsrenard's on the left, it's up to people like you to redirect the left. With the hate that's directed at the right, many won't even hear us out but with the respect you show and constructive criticisms you make, you can change a lot for the benefit of both sides, so full speed ahead!

Questions for debate..

1. Do you believe the left has an issue with hypocrisy and projection, if so can you give an example of either?

2. Hypocrisy is an argument that the right makes often but do you believe that Conservatives have
this problem to the same degree? (give examples if you wish)

3. Can you name some things which would help both sides to come together?

4. Do you have hope that we will heal some of this division or is our future grim?

Bonus Question...

5. With so much condemning information coming out and resurfacing on the Clintons, is it fair to say
they're no longer viable in politics and could either of them be facing criminal charges?

This post has been edited by net2007: Nov 20 2017, 05:22 AM
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net2007
post Jan 27 2018, 08:32 PM
Post #21


********
Millennium Mark

Group: Members
Posts: 1,227
Member No.: 7,629
Joined: April-27-07

From: North Carolina
Gender: Male
Politics: Slightly Conservative
Party affiliation: Republican



Gray Seal
Hey net2007.

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quote net2007, Your largest concern seems to have been the size of government, I tend to be most concerned with sociological developments, though the two are linked in some respects.

False equivalencies is something I keep an eye out for because when someone is doing something wrong, often they're going to want to portray others in the same light and that comes full circle back the issue of projection. Not enough people are taking responsibility for their actions, it seems particularly true in the case of our government and the media, (people with power or influence). The worst part about that is that it's filtering down to the public in some circumstances, it's contagious behavior that's doing a lot of damage.


I could have quoted other lines but these are a decent summary and a reminder of the train of thought.

Sociological developments. And what is the list of things this refers to? A gamut of possibilities but false equivalencies gets towards it. I would say false principles does, too. Voters are voting for advantage for themselves and they can care less who it hurts. We do not vote for principles. We vote for winners and losers and we think some candidates will make us a winner. It could be a need for affirmation that our own values have been blessed by government. We do not believe in freedom to have your own values. Government is the source of winning and winning is the better choice as government will make you a loser if you vote for the wrong one. Voting is to look out for your pocketbook at the expense of someone else's. Voting is to look out for your own values and crushing the values of others.

The period of winning by making government more powerful and intrusive will end. It is the life cycle of empires.

Some voters want to vote for principles. Typically, these voters give in to the lure of easy fixes and the seemingly insurmountable favor big money has controlling the government towards its own ends.

A big portion of voters are simply uneducated dolts when it comes to the role of government. There is no standard nor expectation upon government to have sociological development which in based upon principles such as freedom.

Sociological development. I think of it as culture. What is the culture of the United States? Quite scary. Self centered nominators who look out for themselves and their own pathetic cliques. At least that is what is driving their voting patterns. If we had a good educational system voters would know basic economics, what freedom is, what privacy is, why civil rights are important, etc..

I hope the culture changes in my lifetime. The trouble caused by the culture which has been thriving is coming to a climax.

Ideas such as responsibility are due for a comeback. People may think solving problems is their own matter. By golly, could we ever expect government to be responsible by not overstepping its bounds?

-----

Personal feedback: I like what you have written in this thread. Good stuff.


I appreciate that, my grammar often sucks, along with a few other things, innocent.gif but I try.

To address this first...

"Sociological developments. And what is the list of things this refers to?"

My view on what sociological developments entails is similar to yours it seems, things have gone downhill in more ways than one. Along with what you're saying, I also believe there's a strong racial element to the behaviors we're seeing. I don't believe America is as bad off as we were 100 years ago as some will let on but racial tensions do account for some of what's happening. Problems are happening for many groups, in regards to white conservatives, there's a decent chunk of individuals who think that racism is their problem, an inherent trait of those who look and think like that.

There are those who believe they can hold as much hatred as they want, be as hurtful to others as they want, and even be as violent as they want as long it's against those who they perceive as dangerous, racist, or even if they simply disagree with them in some cases. The problem with that is they're often getting it wrong, those traits can be subjective when people are basing it on skin color or an issue as broad as supporting a border wall. In modern America, I think all races get hit a little by this problem, but often a member of any given race will think their race has it the worst.

More broadly speaking beyond race, what are people to do when the truth is no longer held in high regard and so many people have normalized lies and smear tactics? It's rough because emotion now reigns supreme and in many cases, if a person feels something is wrong, then it's wrong. It's definitely confusing and difficult times in many respects but I think there's an underlying footnote to this as well. There's no poll (at least not that I know of) which tells us exactly how many people are contributing to a decline of our society and if there was such a poll I'd question its validity. Afterall, most people taking a poll like that wouldn't come out and say "yep, that's me, I love lying and hope to screw things up for everybody" Domestic terrorist, or those in other extreme groups may say that but I've found that those who are destructive or disingenuous generally aren't upfront about it, in fact, some of them don't even know they're acting in such a fashion.

So we don't know exactly how many people are contributing to the divisiveness we're seeing but personally, I think it's far fewer people than the impression the news media would give us. I think there's a good chance that over half of the American public still has a brain and will be at least reasonably fair to others, that being largely based on a contrast I see in my personal life between what's shown on the News and people I've known, I've known a good chunk of rotten people but there is a difference. The news media, to a large degree, focuses on the most sensational cases and it's also true that many of those who are causing problems, whether they be in our government, in the news media, or hollywood, etc. etc., those types have a louder megaphone than your average joe, they can get the message out in ways others can't.

What's holding this country together right now are those who are going largely unnoticed, the farmers, mothers who are more concerned about something like their kids grades than what politicians are doing, firefighters, etc etc. Even our scientist, who are working to advance our society, stay largely in the background most of the time. If history is any indicator, I think we'll pull through, we got through the 60's after all.

I'm a big space science nut so I may be biased on this but I think the cooperation we showed when going to the Moon has at least something to do with racial and political tensions subsiding from the 70's to the 90's. There were lots of other factors of course but that event was something that helped JFK to have one of the best approval ratings of any president, he got a lot of support from the Republicans. The controversy surrounding Nixon didn't help, but for all Americans to witness what we could achieve when working together, I believe that helped by the end of it. We may just need something new and substantial that can excite both sides, it doesn't necessarily have to be in relation to exploring space, but anything that helps ease tensions.

Though I feel government has its place, I agree with you that another aspect of this would be an unhealthy degree of fixation on government, and what it can offer. It may not be a coincidence that things have gotten more divisive as government has expanded and that would also be true of an expanding media, people often put more emphasis on the things they're trying to push, rather than thinking for themselves. Take a look at this short video, it'll explain it better than I can.....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjMYCnI5kz0&t=67s

That's in relation to Hollywood but it applies to the news media as well. I think we'll get through this though, I hope that won't depend on a collapse of the system as you're suggesting, thinking that we'll solve these problems without a calamity helps ease my mind some. tongue.gif Unfortunately you may be right though.

_____________________

AuthorMusician
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(Net2007), I can't say I agree with all of that but I share some of your thoughts on Trump, I'm one of those who didn't vote for him due to similar problems that you've pointed out over the months. For me it was all about weighing pro's and con's though, I'm not in a position where I believe everything he's done has been horrific, actually there are certain things I feel he's doing well but there were just a few too many traits he possesses that bothered me enough not to support him, the divisiveness and lies being at the top of the list. Also, every other Republican candidate polled better than Trump in theoretical matchups against Hillary. John Kasich polled the best and always above Hillary by several points, he was ahead of her by 8 points the last time I had checked those polls during the election which really equates to well over 10 points given how pollsters were oversampling Democrats. It's likely that Kasich would have won the popular vote.


Indeed, a lot of the Republican Party worked hard to not get him elected. He won a minority of the voters in such a way that the EC did the electing, not the people. It isn't supposed to work that way, but it does. HRC did indeed win a lot more votes, even though President Trump was absolutely sure, at one time, that illegal voters made up most of that three million. I don't hear much about that any longer, so maybe he doesn't believe that now. I kinda doubt it, given his track record all through his life and now in the eternal spotlight of the White House.


Yea, I think he's wrong on the three million illegals voting for him and those are the kinds of comments I'm talking about which steer people away from him. People should know their arguments and have something to go on, especially when that something is being stated as fact rather than opinion. I would add though that the Republicans are understandably concerned with the legalization of illegals. Whether or not we're to agree that it's fair to do so with the dreamers, (I think it's fine as long as Republicans get something they want like the border wall), legalizing them will indeed change the electorate in the short term and help the Democrats. Though some are certainly genuinely concerned about the Dreamers, I think that's the goal for some Democrats, many people simply want new voters. With what Trump said, I'm sure some illegals manage to vote but legalization is what will make a measurable impact.

On Trump losing the popular vote, while that's true and can be phrased that way in a general sense, it could also be phrased that Trump won the popular vote in the majority of states and in the vast majority of counties. Our founding fathers didn't want highly populated, (but often isolated areas), to have control over other communities. That's especially applicable now since those communities outnumber cities by a factor of at least 7 to 1. Highly populated states still have more influence (as I think they should), the EC is a compromise so that those kinds of states cant go as far as to dominate the country with their politics which are often fixed. The Electoral College is complicated, as you hinted at in your thread on it, but I think it has its place.

_____________

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Trump talks up his win a lot and while some credit is due for how he campaigned, I believe the results of our last election had a lot to do with anti-Hillary votes and the fact that it's difficult for a party to win three presidential elections in a row. After 8 years of policies and special treatment for one side, enough people wanted a change to vote for Trump. To comment on where you said Trump is bad at lying, I think that's true but Hillary was good at it so I ask myself which is worse? Our last election was between a liar and another liar who, in her case, was slick enough to get away with more of what she was doing and that fact almost lead to me casting a Trump vote, I believe Hillary is a better deceiver. Some would argue against that because she lost the election but she's gotten away with a lot and for a very long time, it's crazy that certain politicians have even managed to be viable candidates for anything. A lot of new information has been learned about Hillary after the election which likely would have never come to the surface had she won, she could a lot of trouble this time from what I've been reading.


I suppose she will continue to be a subject of speculation for maybe another decade. Until her enemies can come up with something that sticks, it's all speculation, whereas with Trump, the legal hounds are closing in. Does this mean she's a better liar or simply not guilty? Looks to me to be the latter. However, it is now a moot point. She has no power with which to do damage to the nation.


QUOTE
While much of the information that's been coming out hasn't been shown on networks like CNN, there are new discoveries each week including discoveries on a number of people who have a connection to her or support her in some fashion and with individuals who hate Trump for that matter. Peter Strzok and Andrew Weissmann could be in trouble just to name a couple people in the Muller probe, but this is far-reaching, there seems to be no end to the scandals. After a long fight, congressmen have managed to obtain documents that are likely to change a lot, they're in reference to the FBI, the Department of Justice and Trump. Those who have read them say that it'll shock the public when they see the implications of them and how deep the contents go. Some are also saying that this could go as far as to unravel the Muller investigation though understanding that there are problems with that investigation isn't dependant on unreleased documents. The investigation has already been shown to have participants with extreme anti-Trump biases and a lawyer who uses unethical measures to get information.


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We will see how this all pans out, but it looks to me that the closer it gets to the POTUS, the harder his defenders try to get him off the hook. Same thing happened with Nixon, so I see history rhyming.

Maybe this time our democratic republic will fall to a bunch of deplorable tyrannical oligarchs. I remember seeing a report in 1975 or so that Kissinger suggested to Nixon that he could make a similar move, but he declined. Fake news? Maybe. I've not seen anything on that since, not in support of the story nor a debunking. But it is a major concern among those who want Trump out of office ASAP and possibly in the slammer soon after.


I'm not sure if you remember this but I once made a bet with you that if Hillary got elected, she wouldn't be elected for a second term due to a number of factors, it turns out she was weaker against Trump than I thought and didn't make it for one term so the bet is void. I mention this because I get a similar feeling about the Russia investigation, I don't think this is going to turn out the way that some Democrats are hoping it will. I'd also bet those guitar picks on that, even though you said you had plenty tongue.gif

She was actually stronger than Trump and should have won, but that's moot and so is the bet.

_______________

This will be pretty critical, but in your case, these criticisms are in relation to some of what you believe on this issue, rather than the belief holder.

To address these quotes together I wouldn't doubt that there are some who want to find out about corruption in the Muller probe or corruption with Hillary simply because it's a good defense of, or distraction from Trump, as some on the left are also trying to distract away from the Muller probe or Hillary by pushing false information on Trump like the dossier the Hillary Campaign and DNC paid for which contained Russian propaganda. However, I think the investigations on both sides should continue, but based on facts and a desire to find truth.

I'm on the opposite side of the spectrum on this issue. If I'm understanding you right we both agree that we'll have to wait and see on these investigations, but from what I've seen the evidence shows that Hillary and the Muller probe both have more dirt on them than Trump does in regards to Russia and these investigations. To be specific, on the Democrats side the dirt is on how they're investigating Trump and trying to tie him to Russia, but with Hillary, there are also a range of other scandals, some of which have come back with some pretty damning information already. Some of it still needs to be tied together in the current investigation of her, but many things are known.

Some of it's extremely slimy and disingenuous revelations that have already been verified, with some of it pointing to potential criminal acts, (I'm being modest and conservative when I say potential criminal acts). Between the emails, the dossier containing lies, the Uranium One scandal, the rigging of the primaries which even has Elizabeth Warren, Dona Brazile, Lincoln Chafee, and other prominent Democrats saying that what she did was wrong, and this latest scandal that broke a couple days ago about her going against advice to fire an abuser of women, there's just so much material which reveals that she wasn't the candidate the Democrats needed.

As far as investigations go, honestly I could see the Democrats having better luck focusing on something like a Trump sexual harassment charge than anything else, they'd still have a way to go to prove the witnesses are credible, (some of them were paid to come out against Trump), and I think that's a huge part of the problem come to think of it. There are legitimate concerns surrounding things he's said and things others have said about him but on a number of issues, there are those who want him out of office so badly that they're trying to force it, and many of them are incriminating themselves in the process.

That's one of the reasons I'm saying that I'm willing to bet that the Russia investigation isn't going to turn out the way they're hoping. On the side of the Republicans, the new information seems to be inching them closer in many cases. On the side of the Democrats, some of the reports on Trump were so erroneous that media pundits have gotten either fired or suspended, one erroneous report was so bad that it sent the stock market plummeting. I haven't seen those types of things happening with the Republicans, so I'm considering the magnitude of what's happening on the left on this topic. The media phrases things in the most incriminating way possible even though a lot the stories are turning out to be small and insignificant things that they're hyping up.

One of the more important things they've successfully made stick was the fact Michael Flynn made false statement To FBI.

QUOTE
According to the plea deal, Flynn lied to FBI agents about whether he asked the Russian government in December 2016 to hold off on retaliating against sanctions imposed by then-President Obama for trying to interfere with the campaign. He also lied about how the Russian government had agreed to "moderate its response."


http://www.latimes.com/politics/washington...-htmlstory.html

That's not good but I'm not sure what that has to do with demonstrating Trump colluded with Russia, the charge they got him on was the act of lying to the FBI rather than Flynn helping Trump to do something illegal. That story wasn't as condemning for Trump as some networks let on, if it were they wouldn't have had to exaggerate things by saying Trump ordered Flynn to make contact with the Russians during the campaign, (which was the story that caused the stock market to plummet), also if they had found something definitive on Trump which proves their case, I would have little doubt that they would have released that information before Trump and the Republicans managed to pass tax reform because optics like that could have ruined their chances. Again, there are those who simply want to cause damage to Trump and Republicans. There's at least some credible evidence which points to the Muller investigation getting triggered, in part, by the Dossier which was largely discredited.

Based on what I know, the narrative that Trump colluded with Russia is in all likelihood a false narrative. I think the best chance the Muller team has is to get Trump the way that they got Flynn, especially if Trump does testify under oath. Trump speaks in haste and has lied on many occasions to look better. In other words, it's often about optics with him, he doesn't like criticism whether or not the charges are true or false and that's the best thing Muller has in his favor. However, if that's how this goes down, and Trump gets in serious trouble for lying on something that doesn't prove Russia collusion and the Muller team cant prove it after all of this time and all of these witnesses, the Democrats would have successfully taken Trump down with a false narrative based on lies and fueled by a determination to get him impeached and that puts a lot of the wrongdoing on the side of the Democrats as well.

In regards to Hillary, my stance is that there should be equal justice under the law. Michael Flynn was already fired and had little influence when he was charged with lying to the FBI. I realize that Hillary isn't president and has no power but I think that's largely irrelevant. She should be held to the same standard as most people are when they break the law or lie. With all of that said we will have to wait and see on a lot of this, as you're hinting at. It's crunch time right now and if Muller is about to get Trump to testify, something is going to give soon. I don't think the fact that Muller wanting to do that now is surprising, his investigation has an incredible amount of heat on it right now. Personally, I think he's worried about the memo that's likely to be released within a couple of weeks.

We come from different viewpoints on a lot of this but for what it's worth I think you've been a valuable contributor at AD, many of your topics aren't on divisive issues at all and get people who don't agree on much to communicate in a civil way, I can respect that.
_______________

QUOTE
QUOTE
I think it's a mess on both sides, and that the bull goes far up on both sides. Take Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, those who pay close attention to his arguments and don't have a political reason to defend him often view him as part of the problem in American politics. Personally, I don't think there are many people who are as disingenuous, corrupt, and slimy as that man. There's been so many lies and so much deceitful behavior coming from him and he won't stop doing it. He seems to only care about destroying Trump and diminishing conservatives, even on things that are quite obviously wrong.

Take the government shutdown, under Obama Schumer viewed shutting down the government as "governmental chaos" and "political idiocy", yet he and the Democrats were most responsible for shutting down the government a few days ago. Perhaps somewhere in his head, he knows that what he's doing is hypocritical and disingenuous, so he takes the focus away from that double standard by moving onto the next disingenuous thing, putting all of the blame on Republicans and Trump for the shutdown. All the media pundits have been debating who's fault that was, the Democrats want to blame Republicans and Republicans want to blame Democrats. To me, none of that noise matters, it should be as simple as wanting to know the facts and learning the truth and there's no way around these numbers...

5 Democratic Senators voted to keep the government open, only 5 out of 49 Senators.
47 Republican Senators voted to keep the government open, 47 out of 51 Senators. (the vast majority).

With basic math we can break down those numbers like this....

For the Dems, 5 is 10.2% of 49, which means 10.2% of Democrats in the Senate voted to keep the government open.
For the Reps 47 is 92.1% of 51, which means 92.1% of Republicans in the Senate voted to keep the government open.

House Republicans were the one who wrote the bill to keep the government moving to begin with and it didn't contain anything the Democrats would have had a hard time voting for, it was very standard. After the bill passed the House, it failed in the Senate primarily because of Democrats so to me it's as simple as saying the Democrats hold the most responsibility because the vast majority of them decided not to vote to fund the government. Schumer uses clever wording to get around basic facts, by pointing out, for example, that Trump had suggested it's time for a good shutdown. Many people don't like Trump, so it's a perfect way to distract from what happened. However ridiculous the things that Trump says are, (I tend to think he needs to keep his mouth shut more), what Schumer wouldn't say is that Trump was wanting a shutdown on an entirely different occasion last year when they were working on repealing Obamacare, Trump was referring to last September when he said that....

http://thehill.com/homenews/administration...a-good-shutdown

I don't think that rhetoric helped things but Schumer is calling this shutdown the Trump shutdown and taking zero responsibility for how his party voted and how little they're offering the Republicans on a DACA deal. Offering 1.6 billion dollars for an 18 billion dollar wall and expecting to get exactly what they want after offering peanuts to the opposing party is not bipartisanship. I believe the Democrats thought that Republicans would be blamed for the shutdown again, but as soon as the polls started showing otherwise they backed down. Heres what the shutdown did for the Democrats...

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/ot..._vote-6185.html

Notice the shift in the days following the shutdown?

So I feel your frustration AM. Much of the time I understand your arguments on Trump, I really do, but I think that there's so much noise coming from the Democrats that people are having a hard time separating the wheat from the chaff. In my opinion, if the Republicans do lose the House or Senate it won't have near as much to do with a quality difference between the Dems and Reps as some may claim later this year. The Democrats will claim victory if they flip either the House or Senate and while there's always credit due to the winner, for the Dems to maintain a healthy majority, as with the Republicans it'll take some kind of a fundamental change in how they behave. Historical voting trends will be on their side later this year but I don't know how they can claim they've improved since Trump got elected.


First off, the vote was on the budget bill. Second off, the bill was passed with compromise from both sides. How you make the sausage is always a greasy mess, and politics will never be rid of that. The thing I take from the very short shutdown is that both sides realized that it's their butts on the line, and letting Trump's 180 degree turn kill their careers wasn't worth it.

The last honest POTUS we had was Carter. He only got in because of Nixon and then Ford, the guy who pardoned Nixon. Honest politicians usually don't get elected. But like the Trump election, stuff happens, and there you go. Now we are all stuck with a bad choice made by, not the people, but the Electoral College -- which is supposed to reflect the majority, but has failed to do so twice this century. Both Republicans. Both really bad POTUS's. This needs to be changed, IMO (not so humble rolleyes.gif ).

___________

To further explain, the bill that we're both referencing meant the difference between an open government and a government shutdown. I don't know how to get around what actually happened with the votes AM. The old bill failed because only 10.2% of Democrats voted for it while 92.1% of Republicans voted for it. The Republicans needed much more in the way of help from the Democrats to prevent this. In the newer bill, which allowed the government to reopen, there was more bipartisan support but there was still a significant difference between the Democrats and Republicans. Only 2 Republicans didn't vote for this bill while 15 Democrats plus Bernie Sanders didn't vote for it...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/201...m=.0e306fc21f9d

To me, the way that all of this went down reveals the Democrats were more responsible because the Democrats literally voted in a way that caused the shutdown. That's concrete, measurable, and doesn't rely on speculation from Liberal or Conservative media pundits, many of whom have a motive to make one side or the other look innocent on this. This even tightened the favorability polling between the Republicans and Democrats, so this is something the Dems felt the effects of in a short amount of time. I'd go as far as to say the Republicans were more responsible for the last shutdown, I don't want to make out like the Dems never get it right but this one was different.

To the credit of Trump and the Republicans on this, they're offering the Democrats something that's valuable to them, a DACA fix and potentially citizenship for over 2 million Dreamers. Either one of those things is huge so I think Schumer and the Democrats need to step up to the plate and offer something real on their end. Democrats have been treating this like we have a Democrat in the White House, but they're not going to get exactly what they want without compromise. I hope they all work it out, maybe this is something that can show that the two sides can work together on something big.
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QUOTE
QUOTE
On what you mentioned in regards to the media, Trump does call them out for fake news a great deal. My opinion on that is that they shouldn't stop pointing out when he lies or does something wrong, so he has a long road ahead of him with the media for sure. My only pet peeve is that they hardly put any focus on cases where he's right or is telling the truth and they don't hold the left's feet to the fire in quite the same way. I say they should just cover all of it if they're going to focus on controversy. If I had a network I'd attempt to split it down the middle with both conservative and liberal anchors and let the viewers decide which shows they like. Networks with either 90% liberal or 90% conservative anchors usually present a warped picture of reality where the opposing side might as well be depicted as aliens hell-bent on the destruction of the human race. dry.gif

Trump calls the media fake news like how criminals call police pigs. If it were not for the fake news, he'd have no problems. If it were not for the pigs, he wouldn't have to go to jail.

But he does and he will, and there's nobody to blame but himself. You know, when all the chips finally fall. That is my opinion based on the downfall of Richard M. Nixon in 1974 and having known about Trump since the 1980s. The way his minions have been behaving adds certainty to my prognostication, but time will tell. I'm even more sure that we haven't seen the end of outrageous behavior from President Trump, since that is basically who he is -- a breathtakingly outrageous character who seemingly escaped from a bad novel.

_________

I readily agree with you that we haven't seen the end of the outrageous behavior from Trump, and I don't doubt you have knowledge of history, but I feel you're going to be disappointed on this one. Of course, I could always be wrong on this too, I'm not a brother to Trump or a senior member of his staff, but I trust my sources and instincts. To break down my confidence on this I'd say I'm in the 90% range that the investigation won't show Trump colluded with Russia, or result in him getting impeached or charged with a crime. The doubt I do have is mostly due to the fact that I think Trump could potentially lie under oath for optics. In other words, he could say something like "You think I colluded with Russia?!?!, I never even speak to Russians!!!" We all know he doesn't always speak candidly but if he does that under oath he's screwed whether or not he's guilty of collusion.

There's also an outside chance that they found something unrelated to Russia collusion but as far as collusion itself goes, I don't expect anything other than the types of things they've found already, (story's that don't result in proof of collusion). There's been too many false alarms and too little bipartisan agreement on it which tells me it's a politically motivated argument for some. Apart from the claim usually being made by the political left, the political motivation becomes more clear with the Steele Dossier given it was paid for by the DNC and Hillary campaign and had wild unsubstantiated claims which try to tie Trump to Russia. Ultimately time will tell but I think considering the possibility of 4 to 8 years of Trump would be smart for those who are left of center or simply don't like Trump.

_________________

Just to give a heads up, part of my new reply was accidentally put within prior quotes so it may not have been noticed. The part that was in quotes that may have been missed starts like this..... "This will be pretty critical" Holding the Ctrl key down then pressing F will bring up a search bar for this web page. If you have trouble finding that line try searching it. thumbsup.gif

This post has been edited by net2007: Jan 28 2018, 07:38 AM
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Gray Seal
post Jan 31 2018, 08:56 PM
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QUOTE(net2007)
I also believe there's a strong racial element to the behaviors we're seeing. I don't believe America is as bad off as we were 100 years ago as some will let on but racial tensions do account for some of what's happening. Problems are happening for many groups, in regards to white conservatives, there's a decent chunk of individuals who think that racism is their problem, an inherent trait of those who look and think like that.


When I visited Sweden (2011) and asked the question: "What is the best thing about Sweden and the worst thing about Sweden?" A common reply for the worst thing was: "We are becoming racist." From my perspective it was native Swedes who were upset with immigrants who were coming to the country to take advantage of the generous social system but having never contributed to it. I told it may appear to be racist but they will have the same problem if Swedes began abusing the system, which would eventually happen. "The problem is the system, ripe to be plundered, not race", I told them.

I say to you, "It is not race which is causing our problems. It is the system."

Of course there are people who are prejudiced based upon race. There are people who favor all sorts of things. Some people discriminate based upon religion. There is freedom to associate.

Prejudice would be a problem if there was use of government force to discriminate. I do not see evidence that racial prejudice is being forced upon anyone via government. I see people of all races excelling in many fields.

Unfortunately, government force is being used where it should not. I do not see a pattern that this is racial. Government force is out of control in many aspects. I can think of Ruby Ridge or Waco or the Bundy Ranch or killing of Levoy Finicum. I know locally county police shot and killed a white guy in this backyard when he came out after midnight armed to find out who was in his yard at night. The Michael Brown case in St Louis was about excessive force and poor training/policy. Race was used to diverge the public from the real problem. If it was just white government abusing black citizens there would be a point. It clearly is not.

QUOTE(net2007)
What's holding this country together right now are those who are going largely unnoticed, the farmers, mothers who are more concerned about something like their kids grades than what politicians are doing, firefighters, etc etc. Even our scientist, who are working to advance our society, stay largely in the background most of the time.
People generally do the right thing. I give credit to those who live rurally. They tend to be more self sufficient and responsible. Even responsible people are not responsible when they vote. Whether from the city, urban, or countryside the tendency is to vote for advantage and more government force.

When your quality of life depends directly upon who is elected, conflict is going to generated. There will be losers. Losers will be angry. The work ethic will carry the country so far. The work ethic can be overwhelmed. Government's current role as decider of who gets to take from whom is no good. The government's role of giving advantage is no good. The bad is getting thicker. Even those who are driven by a strong work ethic can and will say, "Enough already!"

There is a path of solving this obvious problem peacefully. That would be my choice. However, there is insufficient knowledge in the general population to identify, understand, and correct the problem. Mayhew will not be the means to correcting the problem but a continuation of the problem when the general population is ignorant.

On the hopeful side, we do have greatly improved technology for spreading and learning the knowledge of the world our scientists have gleaned. The internet is fabulous. The internet is a cheap way to disseminate information and to find information. Against a knowledge based solution is our public schools and political parties. Will science or ignorance win? We shall know in our lifetimes.
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Julian
post Feb 2 2018, 06:18 PM
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QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Jan 31 2018, 08:56 PM) *
On the hopeful side, we do have greatly improved technology for spreading and learning the knowledge of the world our scientists have gleaned. The internet is fabulous. The internet is a cheap way to disseminate information and to find information. Against a knowledge based solution is our public schools and political parties. Will science or ignorance win? We shall know in our lifetimes.


I appreciate and sympathise with your optimism, but I fear that ignorance has already won, and not least because of the internet.

Let me explain.

Back in the days when books contained knowledge, it was easy to know (or think you know) if you were ignorant - you couldn't read, or you didn't spend much of your time reading. People who did may have been objects of scorn sometimes ('bookworm' wasn't usually applied as a compliment) but, as a generality, there was a societal respect for people who'd put in the time and effort to garner expertise in a subject. Of course that wasn't only true of book learning, and people/society accorded even more respect to people who had learned from experience than those that learned only from study, and even more respect to those that had done both.

Now, pretty much all the knowledge in the world is contained within the internet. If you know where to look, and how to use it, you can find out as much about a subject from your own armchair in a matter of weeks as someone visiting the biggest academic libraries could find out in a matter of months or years.

BUT, there are no editors, no publishers and no librarians on the internet. Well, there are, but they (Google, Facebook and the others) are generally being paid by content providers and advertisers to expose their content to us, the audience. We aren't paying to use it like we might pay subs to a private library, or funding it through taxes like we would to fund a public one. We are the product, being presented to the paying customers. We are not the customers ourselves. Google et al present us with what they think we might like (with startling accuracy, perhaps), but it's like being in a library where the librarian only ever lets you look at books about one subject, or by one author or publisher and physically hides all the other books. You don't even know they exist.

And, anybody can post anything, often just as easily as they can read it. The opinions of lay people have been elevated to the same level as those of recognised experts to the point where few people really can recognise genuine expertise any more.

The net result of this is that everyone (me included) thinks they are highly informed on any given subject, because they've read about it on the web, or seen a YouTube video, or discussed it in a closed Facebook group.

I don't believe for a second this was the intended effect, but one corollary of the way the internet has come to work is that we are no longer exposed to the reality of our own ignorance. We think we know. We think we know as much as that expert we see/hear/read about (who is a genuine expert). We think the guy with a contrary opinion that our preferred news source has used as a counter to the genuine expert is also a genuine expert. Indeed, he must be a better expert because his opinion confirms ours, rather than contradicts it. (Think about the whole debate on anthropogenic global warming, from whatever side of the fence you sit, and tell me this doesn't happen.)

I think this is a HUGE part of the whole subject of this thread - the way the internet has come to work has entrenched divisions in many areas of politics and debate, rather than minimised or removed them. Instead of engaging across the aisle with actual ideas and propositions, debating them, and arriving at solutions based on compromise, we engage in debate with our own 'side' and hurl insults and contempt at the others, ideas that used to seem extreme become normalised, both sides drift further apart and "reaching across the aisle" requires longer and longer arms. To wit, "Liberals are soft-hearted simpletons and just want to spend other people's money to fix problems rather than expending any effort helping themselves." "Conservatives are lower than vermin* and their ideas must never be considered, much less treated seriously."

Now, the internet is a human phenomenon and, being that, the only certainty about it is that it will change. But, will we look back on it from our future selves and think "man, how did we ever think THAT was a good idea?" or "man, I really miss the way this used to work"?

One way or the other, we are going to find out...

*British Labour politician Aneurin Bevan said that in the 1950s, so the internet hasn't introduced concepts that never existed before, just amplified such extremes to make them seem more mainstream.
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net2007
post Feb 4 2018, 04:26 AM
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Gray Seal, just a heads up that I'll be able to write again in a couple days, I wanted to follow up on what you wrote. I'm currently preparing for a Superbowl party here tomorrow, a welcome break from Lizzy and I running around like crazy trying to get things done. wacko.gif
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Gray Seal
post Feb 7 2018, 08:55 PM
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Julian, bad information did not start with the internet. We have always had to sift through information and figure out what makes sense. We have had to do this with books (information written on paper) for a long time. We have learned to do this.

Having a middleman (editor, publicist, agent, publisher) between us and authors has not been a benefit, in my mind. There are many factors which determine our access to information via middlemen and determination of value is not an exclusive factor. There is also the problem that middlemen have their own prejudice and they are not by definition the best and picking what we need to know.

With the internet, much more information is possible to acquire. It is can be overwhelming. In addition to the skill of figuring out what is worthy to read we also can pick our own advisors as to what we should try.

The abundance of material and the reduced cost can be nothing but a good thing. The internet has not solved the problem of bad information. But the internet is not the originator of bad information, either. We can use our own judgement as to what to read, like we have with paper information. The chance to get valuable information is much greater. Being informed is never a bad thing.

Hubris has not been invented by the internet. Life tends to sort out such misgivings whether there is an internet or not. People can think they know everything and have the best opinions. Luckily we do not have any of that sort here on ad.gif. tongue.gif

Information and our ideas are worth sharing. We can not go too far in this regard.

Julian, I find your ideas to be interesting. I can never quite predict what you will say on a position. You and I can wholeheartedly agree on a notion and then diverge away on the next. Having a middleman between us would not benefit the exchange, as far as I am concerned. Trying to figure out your train of thought makes it interesting. You are part of the internet and the extra new cheap information!
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net2007
post Feb 7 2018, 11:35 PM
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QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Jan 31 2018, 03:56 PM) *
QUOTE(net2007)
I also believe there's a strong racial element to the behaviors we're seeing. I don't believe America is as bad off as we were 100 years ago as some will let on but racial tensions do account for some of what's happening. Problems are happening for many groups, in regards to white conservatives, there's a decent chunk of individuals who think that racism is their problem, an inherent trait of those who look and think like that.


When I visited Sweden (2011) and asked the question: "What is the best thing about Sweden and the worst thing about Sweden?" A common reply for the worst thing was: "We are becoming racist." From my perspective it was native Swedes who were upset with immigrants who were coming to the country to take advantage of the generous social system but having never contributed to it. I told it may appear to be racist but they will have the same problem if Swedes began abusing the system, which would eventually happen. "The problem is the system, ripe to be plundered, not race", I told them.

I say to you, "It is not race which is causing our problems. It is the system."

Of course there are people who are prejudiced based upon race. There are people who favor all sorts of things. Some people discriminate based upon religion. There is freedom to associate.

Prejudice would be a problem if there was use of government force to discriminate. I do not see evidence that racial prejudice is being forced upon anyone via government. I see people of all races excelling in many fields.

Unfortunately, government force is being used where it should not. I do not see a pattern that this is racial. Government force is out of control in many aspects. I can think of Ruby Ridge or Waco or the Bundy Ranch or killing of Levoy Finicum. I know locally county police shot and killed a white guy in this backyard when he came out after midnight armed to find out who was in his yard at night. The Michael Brown case in St Louis was about excessive force and poor training/policy. Race was used to diverge the public from the real problem. If it was just white government abusing black citizens there would be a point. It clearly is not.


I believe I understand and there's a lot which supports that line of reasoning. It is certainly race-based prejudices which drive some of our problems, I'll second that and the idea that there's more to it. The history of slavery is revealing as well, in the sense that nations or regions with power and influence often had slaves, dating back long before the African Slave Trade in fact. There's speculation that the Egyptians had slaves, but the earliest verified accounts of slavery that I could find took place in some of the first civilizations we have better records of like Mesopotamia, which was a region that today corresponds to Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey.

So whether or not Egypt had slaves, as far as we know the Middle East was the first region to have slavery and at that time they were at the cutting edge in a number of ways. They formed the first cities (as we know them today), invented the wheel, and were close to being the first in communicating with written language. Mesopotamia was advanced enough to be referred to as the "cradle of civilization", so it's another example of a powerful region which had slaves. From what I've read many other civilizations had slaves throughout history but larger concentrations of them were in advanced or dominate cultures. This shows the connection between having power and influence but using that to do things that shouldn't be done. Today slavery trends have changed where the U.S. and other highly developed nations have done away with it so there are some promising signs as well, thankfully.

Continued below...

QUOTE
QUOTE(net2007)
What's holding this country together right now are those who are going largely unnoticed, the farmers, mothers who are more concerned about something like their kids grades than what politicians are doing, firefighters, etc etc. Even our scientist, who are working to advance our society, stay largely in the background most of the time.
People generally do the right thing. I give credit to those who live rurally. They tend to be more self sufficient and responsible. Even responsible people are not responsible when they vote. Whether from the city, urban, or countryside the tendency is to vote for advantage and more government force.

When your quality of life depends directly upon who is elected, conflict is going to generated. There will be losers. Losers will be angry. The work ethic will carry the country so far. The work ethic can be overwhelmed. Government's current role as decider of who gets to take from whom is no good. The government's role of giving advantage is no good. The bad is getting thicker. Even those who are driven by a strong work ethic can and will say, "Enough already!"

There is a path of solving this obvious problem peacefully. That would be my choice. However, there is insufficient knowledge in the general population to identify, understand, and correct the problem. Mayhew will not be the means to correcting the problem but a continuation of the problem when the general population is ignorant.

On the hopeful side, we do have greatly improved technology for spreading and learning the knowledge of the world our scientists have gleaned. The internet is fabulous. The internet is a cheap way to disseminate information and to find information. Against a knowledge based solution is our public schools and political parties. Will science or ignorance win? We shall know in our lifetimes.


I hear you, though I believe government and stronger regions and nations can be a force for good, I'm understanding more on the abuses of government and the excessive worship of it with each passing year. I believe moderation to be one of my core principals, most things done in excess can be a bad thing, to my surprise you can even be poisoned and die from drinking too much water. In regards to the government, there are certainly reasons for the frustration on both sides. Most recently I've been looking a lot into abuses within the FBI, DOJ, and Hillary campaign and what's happening now substantiates your position a great deal.

To recap how messy this has gotten, the Nunes Memo that was released by Republicans a few days ago likely accelerated the process of exposing more corruption, there's already been a second Republican memo which helps substantiate the first one, it was released yesterday. It's probable now that a new special counsel will be initiated to investigate the FBI and DOJ. The Democrats think the memo was nonsense, the Republicans often think it's groundbreaking. I think it's concerning at minimum, the information in it is a continuation of other things we've learned about how they spied on Trump and how they're going about investigating him.

The Democrats are suggesting this memo is misleading but with what we've already learned I don't find any of it hard to believe, the abuses of power become more clear every day. One of the primary arguments is that the Russia investigation was triggered by the Hillary Campaign and DNC paying Christopher Steele who then composed a dossier which contained wild and unsubstantiated claims (propaganda which was Russian sourced). The Republican memo which was released said...

QUOTE
"Steele was desperate to keep Trump out of office and was passionate about him not succeeding."


That's easy to believe given the nature of the dossier and its ties to the Hillary Campaign. After she was caught Hillary said the Steele Dossier was "opposition research". If her idea of research is looking for dirt, not being happy with what she finds, then deciding to present a document containing wild claims that they can't prove, then I suppose she could call that research. To me, it stops being research the moment a person makes up a story they can't prove.

The history of the Clintons is part of a long list of reasons why I think there was no Trump and Russian collusion, there is so much in the way of scandals and lies with the Clintons, so if what was stated here in the Republican memo is true....

QUOTE
"Andrew McCabe testified before the Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information."


Then it's only a matter of time before the Russia/Trump collusion narrative falls apart, they're taking a massive credibility hit right now.....

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-53...l#ixzz56LozpeJ2

I believe both parties have serious problems, Republicans in the Senate are not always for small government nor are they always productive, yet I find myself siding with Republicans and conservatives more because I feel I'm slightly more likely to find truth with them, and this falls under "sociological developments" as well. There's not a huge difference between the Democrats and Republicans and it depends on the issue but, as an example of a difference between the two, take what's happened with the Republican and Democratic memos so far.

The Democrats were screaming bloody murder over releasing the Nunes Memo, they suggested the Republicans would reveal sources and methods, and it would be a grave risk to our national security. Despite that, we now know that no sources and methods were in the memo, so this comes off as if many Democrats simply didn't want the information out there. As crazy and ironic as this is, the counter memo that the Democrats have been working on DOES contain sources and methods, it's one of the reasons it was delayed.....

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/02/06...ve-details.html

It's not just Fox News saying that. The following article was against the release of the Republican memo yet it says something similar....

QUOTE
"So what can House Intelligence Committee Democrats do after, and in the face of, the reckless act of releasing the Nunes memo next week? They can go back over the Democratic memo, making sure that there is a version without release of actual sources and methods of obtaining Russian information."


https://www.forbes.com/sites/charlestiefer/...o/#1d7247d455c4

By the time the Democratic memo comes out, I'm sure the sensitive information will be removed but this goes back to the issue of projection, the Democrats were doing something wrong and with a knee-jerk reaction accused others of doing what they were. This causes those who aren't paying attention to go right along with their argument, if the argument is about a group or person someone doesn't like, it's easier for them to go along with that argument without challenging it.

The Republicans also seemed more supportive of releasing the Democrats memo than vice versa. With some exceptions, from the Republicans, I keep hearing the argument of (let's get all of the information out there), rather than them making a concentrated effort to stop the release of it. That comes off as if the Democrats are scared of what's being revealed and they have reason to be.

To wrap up the Russia topic with one last point, when I turn on a left leaning network or listen to a Democrat in office they keep making the claim that Republicans are attacking the FBI, yet when I flip over to a conservative network or listen to a Republican in office they're actually continuously making the claim that rank and file members of the FBI are not part of the problem and that it's simply a few of the higher level members of the bureau who are either corrupt or politizising things and anybody who has read the things that people like Lisa Page and Peter Strzok have said, darn well knows that's the truth. So Democrats have simply rephrased the arguments that Republicans were making on the FBI. I mention a contrast between the Republicans and Democrats because the Dems happen to support a larger and more restrictive government than the Republicans do, so It's fair to ask if the problems the Democrats face are linked to that.

The government certainly isn't alone in demonstrating or fueling the types of problems we're addressing. The media is complaisant and even drives some of this, I think any organization with power is at risk of being corrupted by that power. To the credit of leftist, corporations aren't free from this problem either, though I don't think they're disproportionally corrupt by comparison to the government.

Our government has more power and faces fewer consequences if a policy fails while the consequences corporations or particularly small businesses face from a failed product or idea is often severe and felt immediately. Blue Bell Creameries couldn't count on not being at risk until an election rolled around when their ice cream was infected with Listeriosis which got people killed. The company almost went out of business, they lost millions because they had to stop production and shut down plants. When the government shuts down they still get paid so I think they have more leeway to abuse the power they have. "With great power comes great responsibility", and we are desperate for more of the latter.

With what I'm explaining on the divisive nature of politics, the lying, and problems within our government, I'm sure I'm preaching to the choir but in my lifetime I've never seen it quite like this. I think things will get better one way or another but if we don't see a change soon millions of peoples hair will fall out from stress. The makers of Rogaine will love this but beyond that, I don't see the upside. dry.gif

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Trouble
post Feb 8 2018, 07:01 AM
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1. Do you believe the left has an issue with hypocrisy and projection, if so can you give an example of either?

I would say hypocrisy and projection has infected all corners of the debate. In the last year however, the most glaring examples would come from the FISA memos which were handled from the DNC and the FBI.

2. Hypocrisy is an argument that the right makes often but do you believe that Conservatives have
this problem to the same degree? (give examples if you wish)


Yes I can agree with that. Examples at bottom.

3. Can you name some things which would help both sides to come together?

Yes, recognize what a wedge issue is and stop getting worked up over them. I am calling this a class issue because sex, race, and nationalism are all up on the carving block to an arguement that that does not argue. The problems at hand are brought on by those who will not argue but will pressure legislating bodies to pass ever more erroneous laws. I'll call this entity Postmodernism. The problem is if society is genuinely coming apart, there will be a point where one should just let whatever happen, happen. Thus, reading The Five Stages of Collapse written by a Russian expat who saw the wall fall in Germany and drew parallels might be of significance to the conversation.

4. Do you have hope that we will heal some of this division or is our future grim?

For new growth to occur the big redwood of today's constitution must come tumbling down to allow whatever comes next to take hold. Trying to stop things now just makes you a target.

Bonus Question...

5. With so much condemning information coming out and resurfacing on the Clintons, is it fair to say
they're no longer viable in politics and could either of them be facing criminal charges?


The criminal charges would only work on the premise of a working justice system. I'd say the war on terror broke the justice system into tiers. What is a instructive Net is how many James Comeys and McCabes are going to bat for the Clinton's and then coming up empty. It will take much of 2018 to reveal that the Clintons were the tip of the spear of a rather nasty slander campaign. Ergo, going after the Clintons will involve going after the various institutions which broke their objectivity promises and held bias during the last election. The option left to people at the end of the day is either form another Church commission to root out who did what and accept the loss of face by institutions or put a fork in the constitution. I would argue the latter, because this is in for a penny, in for a pound sort of deal. Any investigation would involve Brennan's involvement at the CIA, Comey's involvement at the FBI, Clapper's involvement at the DNI, and most likely the NSA which chose not to resolve the authenticity of the claims made against Trump. This means for closure to happen we have to have an investigation of immense scope.

I've often considered the Clintons and the Bushes to be two sides of the same coin which embraces interventionism abroad while cutting programs at home as unemployment burns a hole in the midlands. For all his problems I think the current President is a different animal.

Initially, I called myself a Liberal, but in a Canadian sense which is a centrist. Then in 2012, there came extreme left leaning groups like Antifa which were initiating counter groups like the Alt Right four or so years later. The point is Net you don't plant corn when there is snow on the ground. The time for centrism and participatory democracy went the way of the dodo sometime during Obama's second term. Anyone who still thinks centrism still is possible in this political climate is either being disingenuous or an idiot.

I respect Americans because of their frankness but also because they are exposed to many forces while allied countries like to pretend certain problems either do not exist or exist only in America. When we attempt to define the problem we find corruption by financial means. The problem is worldwide and addressing this will alter GDP and immigration. If you are a growth proponent we can argue from many directions that challenges are on the horizon.

QUOTE(Julian @ Feb 2 2018, 12:18 PM) *
QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Jan 31 2018, 08:56 PM) *
On the hopeful side, we do have greatly improved technology for spreading and learning the knowledge of the world our scientists have gleaned. The internet is fabulous. The internet is a cheap way to disseminate information and to find information. Against a knowledge based solution is our public schools and political parties. Will science or ignorance win? We shall know in our lifetimes.


I appreciate and sympathise with your optimism, but I fear that ignorance has already won, and not least because of the internet.

Let me explain.

Back in the days when books contained knowledge, it was easy to know (or think you know) if you were ignorant - you couldn't read, or you didn't spend much of your time reading. People who did may have been objects of scorn sometimes ('bookworm' wasn't usually applied as a compliment) but, as a generality, there was a societal respect for people who'd put in the time and effort to garner expertise in a subject. Of course that wasn't only true of book learning, and people/society accorded even more respect to people who had learned from experience than those that learned only from study, and even more respect to those that had done both.

Now, pretty much all the knowledge in the world is contained within the internet. If you know where to look, and how to use it, you can find out as much about a subject from your own armchair in a matter of weeks as someone visiting the biggest academic libraries could find out in a matter of months or years.

BUT, there are no editors, no publishers and no librarians on the internet. Well, there are, but they (Google, Facebook and the others) are generally being paid by content providers and advertisers to expose their content to us, the audience. We aren't paying to use it like we might pay subs to a private library, or funding it through taxes like we would to fund a public one. We are the product, being presented to the paying customers. We are not the customers ourselves. Google et al present us with what they think we might like (with startling accuracy, perhaps), but it's like being in a library where the librarian only ever lets you look at books about one subject, or by one author or publisher and physically hides all the other books. You don't even know they exist.

And, anybody can post anything, often just as easily as they can read it. The opinions of lay people have been elevated to the same level as those of recognised experts to the point where few people really can recognise genuine expertise any more.

The net result of this is that everyone (me included) thinks they are highly informed on any given subject, because they've read about it on the web, or seen a YouTube video, or discussed it in a closed Facebook group.

I don't believe for a second this was the intended effect, but one corollary of the way the internet has come to work is that we are no longer exposed to the reality of our own ignorance. We think we know. We think we know as much as that expert we see/hear/read about (who is a genuine expert). We think the guy with a contrary opinion that our preferred news source has used as a counter to the genuine expert is also a genuine expert. Indeed, he must be a better expert because his opinion confirms ours, rather than contradicts it. (Think about the whole debate on anthropogenic global warming, from whatever side of the fence you sit, and tell me this doesn't happen.)

I think this is a HUGE part of the whole subject of this thread - the way the internet has come to work has entrenched divisions in many areas of politics and debate, rather than minimised or removed them. Instead of engaging across the aisle with actual ideas and propositions, debating them, and arriving at solutions based on compromise, we engage in debate with our own 'side' and hurl insults and contempt at the others, ideas that used to seem extreme become normalised, both sides drift further apart and "reaching across the aisle" requires longer and longer arms. To wit, "Liberals are soft-hearted simpletons and just want to spend other people's money to fix problems rather than expending any effort helping themselves." "Conservatives are lower than vermin* and their ideas must never be considered, much less treated seriously."

Now, the internet is a human phenomenon and, being that, the only certainty about it is that it will change. But, will we look back on it from our future selves and think "man, how did we ever think THAT was a good idea?" or "man, I really miss the way this used to work"?

One way or the other, we are going to find out...

*British Labour politician Aneurin Bevan said that in the 1950s, so the internet hasn't introduced concepts that never existed before, just amplified such extremes to make them seem more mainstream.


Julian, I can agree with your premise in so far as the internet is a disruptive technology. However, I'm not the first person to realize the information contained within is often at a superficial level. True, the contents are broad but the important stuff is always set up behind a paywall. I think the real learning is allowing yourself to be exposed to new ideas and allow the tidal waters to pull you in a particular direction. Follow up afterwards with hard copy on any given subject. If we step back we will see just as the printing press brought about a reformation of sorts with the Protestants who wanted both the freedom and the right to interpret the bible on their own terms, we are now seeing self organizing groups come together for all manner of subjects. The large media are playing the role of the church. If losing corporate filters costs us of accuracy and objectivity. then the structure of what is reporting has to change. The emphasis as you might have guessed now falls on us to figure what is true or not.

And, anybody can post anything, often just as easily as they can read it. The opinions of lay people have been elevated to the same level as those of recognised experts to the point where few people really can recognise genuine expertise any more.


They sure can but qualitative differences usually give the small outlet a short lifespan. The large media outlets have increasingly the same problem because of budget cutbacks. Have you noticed participants on tv may have more window dressing but rarely bring any more professionalism anymore? There are no Walter Cronkites. Authentic people talking honestly about a subject because they are concerned have retired. They are sitting grimly watching on with a bottle of scotch in their hand.

The search for authenticity I think is what first drove people onto Youtube and what is now driving people off of Youtube. This element more than any other drove up my time searching because opinion pieces replaced actual reporting. People on some level get this and I'd wager contribute to the tuning out process. The individual opinion and the professional outlet are merging in terms of quality and until we are able to improve upon this, we are in an informational wasteland.

Here is the thing, people sense a decline in media. For those who are still aware enough not to derive their news from social media, the sniffing skills of Joe Q public are improving. I'll use ProporNot as the example of a hit piece by corporate media against alternative media which failed in its objective. The whole concept of fake news relies on large media becoming irritated that people are not accepting their product anymore and have launched a war on people who do not agree with them.

It will take decades to judge the efficacy of such self organizing collectives. As with the printing press, I will call this the great reinterpretation. Shaky at first but necessary for a more engaged citizenry.

In particular, I'll highlight this:

The net result of this is that everyone (me included) thinks they are highly informed on any given subject, because they've read about it on the web, or seen a YouTube video, or discussed it in a closed Facebook group.

That is only true if you are prone to narcissism. If there is a shred of humility in the individual, you will see echo chambers for what they are and act accordingly. For those who just post anything for any reason whatsoever, they will find eventually have to support their arguements or just step off the platform. Upon further deliberation, I guess I could be guilty of repeating what I've heard as well, but in a sense of furthering the conversation for conversation's sake rather than trying to dominate a given discussion. I guess it depends on ones' motives?

Is there a whole generation of young people affected by social media and becoming depressed when someone somewhere says something bad about them? I don't know. But I would definitely classify their interactions as part of the greater psychological response which is affecting politics. There is a weird correlation between the young doing this weird form of virtue signaling and our political parties. Both can no longer handle debate. Both are searching for echo chambers. Both are degrading the climate of debate by forcing outside ideas into the extreme category. There comes a point when we have to live with offensive ideas. I don't care which idea we tap into, the climate which allowed us to make arguements of our own is waning which means everyone here are dinosaurs. We usually look to the young as driving force for change. But what if the change they call for is mostly unconstructive, dangerous and stupid? Then the notion of compromise is a fools game. Isn't that the very definition of a predicament?

The hostility in the air you've described I would argue was intentional and being orchestrated by governing bodies everywhere, especially in Britain. The poisoning of the well moves all future challenges to a fragile governing structure into the hate category and therefore not part of the debate. It is a self preservation tactic and nothing more. My concern is there is so much distortion in the media that it is allowing preposterous positions to be taken by the administration. All administrations. In a climate where everyone lies, no one cares so therefore there is no penalty in escalating the lie. That is the downward spiral affecting the psyche we now face.

When finding news becomes this hard there is most likely a reason and my bet is power. Maybe we'll look back and call it propanada or maybe we'll have a different word for it, I don't know. What I do know is that it is really easy to be angry at the wrong things instead of issues that appeal to you.

This post has been edited by Trouble: Feb 8 2018, 04:55 PM
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Gray Seal
post Feb 8 2018, 05:27 PM
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QUOTE(Trouble)
The hostility in the air you've described I would argue was intentional and being orchestrated by governing bodies everywhere, especially in Britain. The poisoning of the well moves all future challenges to a fragile governing structure in the hate category and therefore not part of the debate. This action creates more work at the sifting level by making Joe Q work that much harder when news hunting, and frustrates even the most dogged in the attempt to suss out a particular story.
I am glad you brought this up. There is the constant plan to keep voters looking at Democrats and Republicans and no one else. There is the faux hostility and banter to maintain the illusion that there are opposites. It is intentional and orchestrated.

Further, there is a concerted effort to paint the "opposition" as bad which must mean the other party is good. Terrible logic but many fall for it.

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Julian
post Feb 9 2018, 06:38 PM
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QUOTE(Trouble @ Feb 8 2018, 07:01 AM) *
Julian, I can agree with your premise in so far as the internet is a disruptive technology. However, I'm not the first person to realize the information contained within is often at a superficial level. True, the contents are broad but the important stuff is always set up behind a paywall.


Which is part of the problem - it's quite difficult to get at ALL the information behind paywalls, not least because few have got enough time and money to pay for ALL the different paywalls they'd need to access to get a fuller picture. And most of the junk information is free to access (along with some of the good stuff).

There is a possible technical solution - I came across a thing called Agate One the other day that allows you pay-per-view access to a pay-walled site. If other paywall sites signed up too, you'd only need to pay Agate to top up your page view count, then dip into otherwise pay-walled content.


QUOTE
I think the real learning is allowing yourself to be exposed to new ideas and allow the tidal waters to pull you in a particular direction. Follow up afterwards with hard copy on any given subject. If we step back we will see just as the printing press brought about a reformation of sorts with the Protestants who wanted both the freedom and the right to interpret the bible on their own terms, we are now seeing self organizing groups come together for all manner of subjects. The large media are playing the role of the church. If losing corporate filters costs us of accuracy and objectivity. then the structure of what is reporting has to change. The emphasis as you might have guessed now falls on us to figure what is true or not.


True, but we are where we are now, and the people who can't be bother or just can't see the walls of their bubble (who haven't taken the red pill?) also have votes and pay taxes. Rather than just accept that - or, most pertinently to this thread, make the partisan assumption that our side of a debate are clear-eyed guardians of the truth while the other side are, at best, victims of being trapped in their bubble and without the wit to see it, or worse, stupid, ignorant, cruel, etc. - we need to shout about it and try to get more of the good stuff in the open for everyone to make up their own minds.

QUOTE
And, anybody can post anything, often just as easily as they can read it. The opinions of lay people have been elevated to the same level as those of recognised experts to the point where few people really can recognise genuine expertise any more.


They sure can but qualitative differences usually give the small outlet a short lifespan. The large media outlets have increasingly the same problem because of budget cutbacks. Have you noticed participants on tv may have more window dressing but rarely bring any more professionalism anymore? There are no Walter Cronkites. Authentic people talking honestly about a subject because they are concerned have retired. They are sitting grimly watching on with a bottle of scotch in their hand.


I don't disagree with your point, but that void is being filled by Twitter and deskbound press-released re-worders who increasingly cobble together news stories based on their social media feed.

QUOTE
This element more than any other drove up my time searching because opinion pieces replaced actual reporting. People on some level get this and I'd wager contribute to the tuning out process. The individual opinion and the professional outlet are merging in terms of quality and until we are able to improve upon this, we are in an informational wasteland.


Agreed.

QUOTE
Here is the thing, people sense a decline in media. For those who are still aware enough not to derive their news from social media, the sniffing skills of Joe Q public are improving. I'll use ProporNot as the example of a hit piece by corporate media against alternative media which failed in its objective. The whole concept of fake news relies on large media becoming irritated that people are not accepting their product anymore and have launched a war on people who do not agree with them.


Really? I thought it had really captured the public's imagination when a presidential candidate in a US election a couple of years back described every single piece of news coverage that did not shower him with totally unqualified praise as 'Fake News' and has continued to do so in office, to the point where he has given exactly one face-to-face interview in his first year with a foreign press correspondent. And that was Piers Morgan, a man with an ego as large and a skin as thin as Trump.

QUOTE
It will take decades to judge the efficacy of such self organizing collectives. As with the printing press, I will call this the great reinterpretation. Shaky at first but necessary for a more engaged citizenry.


Yes, maybe one day we might get to a better place. But what do we do in the meantime, while Presidents and potentates start wars via social media and refuse to talk to (or imprison, torture and murder) journalists?

QUOTE
In particular, I'll highlight this:

The net result of this is that everyone (me included) thinks they are highly informed on any given subject, because they've read about it on the web, or seen a YouTube video, or discussed it in a closed Facebook group.

That is only true if you are prone to narcissism. If there is a shred of humility in the individual, you will see echo chambers for what they are and act accordingly. For those who just post anything for any reason whatsoever, they will find eventually have to support their arguements or just step off the platform. Upon further deliberation, I guess I could be guilty of repeating what I've heard as well, but in a sense of furthering the conversation for conversation's sake rather than trying to dominate a given discussion. I guess it depends on ones' motives?


Again, you or I know we are well-informed individuals with thoughtful opinions. But we don't know what we don't know, so we might be blowing smoke without even realising it. The loud idiots who have half-baked ideas don't think of themselves as that, remember. And the business model of the big internet companies is to not let us see how the information they let us see has been filtered. Because we're human, and if we know something is being hidden from us, we will fight to find out about it. But if we never know it is hidden, we will never know it is there at all. Back to The Matrix again - if we don't want 'Google' and 'Facebook' to end up being 'The Machines', we have to fight to keep and get information completely in the public domain and have some kind of neutral arbiter of salience. More neutral than any commercial or state entity has been historically, so I have no clue what the answer is, but it needs to be much more neutral than anything around today.

QUOTE
Is there a whole generation of young people affected by social media and becoming depressed when someone somewhere says something bad about them? I don't know.

Yes, there is. I read it on the internet dry.gif

QUOTE
But I would definitely classify their interactions as part of the greater psychological response which is affecting politics. There is a weird correlation between the young doing this weird form of virtue signaling and our political parties. Both can no longer handle debate. Both are searching for echo chambers. Both are degrading the climate of debate by forcing outside ideas into the extreme category. There comes a point when we have to live with offensive ideas. I don't care which idea we tap into, the climate which allowed us to make arguements of our own is waning which means everyone here are dinosaurs. We usually look to the young as driving force for change. But what if the change they call for is mostly unconstructive, dangerous and stupid? Then the notion of compromise is a fools game. Isn't that the very definition of a predicament?

Agreed 100%. I've always thought that 'No Platforming' from either side, be it Fox News refusing to give a non-hostile hearing to a left-wing view or leftie students 'refusing to invite' someone slightly to the right of Karl Marx to speak on campus in a debate where they have a pertinent expertise is going in the wrong direction.

The only effective measure of whether true freedom of speech exists in our society is that we are confronted by opinions and speech we find offensive, outrageous, or plain wrong.

QUOTE
The hostility in the air you've described I would argue was intentional and being orchestrated by governing bodies everywhere, especially in Britain.


Oh yes. Our press is poisonous and has been for decades, and our institutions have been "media trained" - IOW, have learned how to ignore any questions and just parrot the agreed line - to match, which has just amplified the frustrations of the people with the governing body which we the impetus for press poison in the first place.

QUOTE
The poisoning of the well moves all future challenges to a fragile governing structure into the hate category and therefore not part of the debate. It is a self preservation tactic and nothing more. My concern is there is so much distortion in the media that it is allowing preposterous positions to be taken by the administration. All administrations. In a climate where everyone lies, no one cares so therefore there is no penalty in escalating the lie. That is the downward spiral affecting the psyche we now face.


Yup. Scientists often get things wrong, but the urge of journalists to invite two opposing views to generate a 'debate' on every news item is actively dangerous when 98% of the evidence repeatably and demonstrably supports one side, and 98% of the other side's evidence isn't actually evidence at all, but just a critique of the majority view, all to protect the vested interests (who usually fund the scientists who oppose the majority view) of those who stand to lose money if the majority view wins out and is accepted as government policy. (AGW). Or because the proponent is a junk scientist who wants to sell a book (vaccinations). And all that happens because journalists, even science journalists, rarely have any science training at all, they just know that a good controversy gets ratings, readers, clicks etc. Kids are dying of preventable disease around the world because one British doctor faked a study about the MMR vaccine, linked it to the fashionable and newsworthy (and only recently taken seriously, at the time) story of the autism spectrum disorders, for which he had no reliable evidence, and millions of parents who were already suspicious of 'The Man' /'Gubmint' laid down the lives of their children based on Fake News.

This is too serious a matter to just shrug and say "well, they should be better at using more than one search engine" or "they should get behind the paywall". Kids died, and still are dying, because people believe what other people tell them, if they trust that person enough. The same will be true of AGW, in my view - though (apparently) the science isn't settled, it's all happening naturally, it isn't happening at all, etc. **PLEASE NOTE*** don't reply to the substance of the AGW debate here - the point is that people can be gullible on all sides and the media - all of it, not just the bits we think of as "fake" or "mainstream" - will stoke controversy where there was consensus if they think it will fly.

QUOTE
When finding news becomes this hard there is most likely a reason and my bet is power. Maybe we'll look back and call it propanada or maybe we'll have a different word for it, I don't know. What I do know is that it is really easy to be angry at the wrong things instead of issues that appeal to you.


Agreed again.
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Gray Seal
post Feb 9 2018, 09:16 PM
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I have not found paywalls to be a barrier for getting information. If there has been a charge, I gladly pay if the information is important to me. I rarely pay anything to get information, good information, on the internet.

If a news source is found to be poor, quit using it. That is how the market can be cleansed of bad news.

I find more good information than I have time to read it. I would not have these good sources if not for the internet.

I have found even more information sources which I do not use as they are poor, to worthless, to propaganda. These are purged from list of places to learn what is going on.

Bad information should not control any of us. We should control them.

If you are trying to get enough information and the find right people to control the world you will fail. No one is capable of controlling the world. It can only be controlled by the involvement of everyone. There is no hidden information to get which will allow you to pick the right authoritarian leader to guide you properly.

We have more than sufficient information available to know the current body of politicians elected to office, whether state or federal, are bad. Even if there is hidden information which would prove it further there is not need for that information. Should we need to know someone is horrendous when we already know they are terrible?

-------

In regards to institutional approval, I put forth an example of Steve Patterson. He found institutional philosophy to be less than desirable for discovering truth so he is an independent philosopher. He uses the internet to find supporters and disseminate information. You can find him as: patterson in pursuit.

Just an example of the internet giving us broader exposure of ideas than we would otherwise have.
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post Feb 12 2018, 01:38 AM
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QUOTE(Trouble @ Feb 8 2018, 02:01 AM) *
"1. Do you believe the left has an issue with hypocrisy and projection, if so can you give an example of either?

I would say hypocrisy and projection has infected all corners of the debate. In the last year however, the most glaring examples would come from the FISA memos which were handled from the DNC and the FBI.

2. Hypocrisy is an argument that the right makes often but do you believe that Conservatives have
this problem to the same degree? (give examples if you wish)

Yes I can agree with that. Examples at bottom.

3. Can you name some things which would help both sides to come together?

Yes, recognize what a wedge issue is and stop getting worked up over them. I am calling this a class issue because sex, race, and nationalism are all up on the carving block to an arguement that that does not argue. The problems at hand are brought on by those who will not argue but will pressure legislating bodies to pass ever more erroneous laws. I'll call this entity Postmodernism. The problem is if society is genuinely coming apart, there will be a point where one should just let whatever happen, happen. Thus, reading The Five Stages of Collapse written by a Russian expat who saw the wall fall in Germany and drew parallels might be of significance to the conversation.

4. Do you have hope that we will heal some of this division or is our future grim?

For new growth to occur the big redwood of today's constitution must come tumbling down to allow whatever comes next to take hold. Trying to stop things now just makes you a target. "

______

"Initially, I called myself a Liberal, but in a Canadian sense which is a centrist. Then in 2012, there came extreme left leaning groups like Antifa which were initiating counter groups like the Alt Right four or so years later. The point is Net you don't plant corn when there is snow on the ground. The time for centrism and participatory democracy went the way of the dodo sometime during Obama's second term. Anyone who still thinks centrism still is possible in this political climate is either being disingenuous or an idiot.

I respect Americans because of their frankness but also because they are exposed to many forces while allied countries like to pretend certain problems either do not exist or exist only in America. When we attempt to define the problem we find corruption by financial means. The problem is worldwide and addressing this will alter GDP and immigration. If you are a growth proponent we can argue from many directions that challenges are on the horizon."


To address the parts in bold, I hope you're wrong on many of those points. I'm not saying that you are, some of the indicators for a collapse are there but what you're thinking will happen would likely lead to a lot of people getting hurt in one way or another. Believe me, I understand the concern and think that it should be taken seriously, just as with the potential for something like a nuclear war. We're outspending what we're generating with our economy, culturally and socially we're struggling because things are so divisive right now that many people who have different beliefs can't even communicate civilly, and politically the story is the same. Politicians often can't work together and some are more concerned about self-preservation than passing legislation that will benefit the country. All of that is true, but I'm seeing some contradictory information from my observations.

I believe some things started to take a turn for the worse even earlier than Obama's second term, the divisiveness that developed during the Iraq War in Bush's 2nd term is something I also look at. Putting aside whether or not the Iraq War was a mistake, those who disagreed began to head down the long and unfortunate road of viewing those who don't share their opinion as inferior, people who should be smeared, stopped, and never trusted. In regards to what you said, that got much worse under Obama without question. I think he exacerbated things 10 fold because he was too partisan and increased our nations focus on identity politics. It was 8 years of policies and special treatment for those who think or look like him, and 8 years of neglect for those who don't. He spoke about unity but it was unity for those who are more like him, so while charismatic, his rhetoric couldn't hide the one-sided nature of his administration, people were smart enough to figure it out.

What I'm hoping for is that this is a phase that we'll pull out of, there's some substantiation that backs that scenario as well if you look at historical trends within the U.S. rather than with fallen nations. The 60s were incredibly divisive, things were much like they are now but the tension died down from the 70's through the 90's so this could be another temporary period of divisiveness and decay. America, like every other nation, will indeed eventually collapse. Nothing lasts forever so whether it's caused by Americans, a foreign nation, or some terrible hit we take from a natural disaster like this,.....

http://fortune.com/2017/10/12/yellowstone-park-supervolcano/

one day we won't be able to hold it together. That time could be closer than I think but America has overcome rough periods before. What you brought up was an important mention, though personally I'm conflicted on whether we'll see a collapse within my lifetime or the lifetime of the next generation. I'm coming across too much contradictory information but I'd say to others to be smart and keep their eyes open regardless.

Gray Seal
QUOTE
I am glad you brought this up. There is the constant plan to keep voters looking at Democrats and Republicans and no one else. There is the faux hostility and banter to maintain the illusion that there are opposites. It is intentional and orchestrated.

Further, there is a concerted effort to paint the "opposition" as bad which must mean the other party is good. Terrible logic but many fall for it.


I can agree with that, I think both parties suffer from the similar influences, make many of the same mistakes, they both have a lot of sexual misconduct charges against them, and both parties have a massive problem with not being able to work together.

I don't think the parties are opposite, or that either should be painted as bad but I do think there's a difference between the two parties due to some observations that, for me, are hard to get around. As examples, when I compare how the left is often protesting compared to something like the Tea Party, I see a difference in the level of hostility and violence. I also consider how house and senate politicians are voting, both sides love to spend money so they were finally able to pass a new budget (however flawed it was). but on many issues, they haven't worked together at all.

The distinction between the two parties comes in when you look at the votes directly because many of them are good at spin and misdirection. Democrats, are in many circumstances voting 100% against the Republicans and some Republicans weren't casting votes with the rest of the party. That could be viewed as the Republicans have trouble working or voting together, but it could also be viewed as Republicans being a bit more willing to consider the views that centrist or leftist hold. Some Republicans were suggesting that certain bills, such as the attempted Obamacare repeals, were too far to the right, some wanted considerations for centrist or Democrats.

Obamacare is a mess so the way John McCain voted on it's repeal was controversial but right or wrong he didn't vote to repeal it because he wanted the Democrats to have more of a say on new legislation. I struggle to find anybody who would be the John McCain equivalent for the Democrats when it comes to voting, Republicans didn't get a single vote for Obamacare repeal, tax reform, and they're getting little in the way of cooperation on immigration reform. On immigration supposed bipartisan bill proposals offered about 1.8 billion dollars, (10%), for an 18 billion dollar wall while expecting to get everything they want such as amnesty for the dreamers.

also, in all the bills I've seen where a "no" vote would result in a government shutdown, the Democrats voted no by a higher margin. In the case of the First shutdown, that one happened because only 5 out of 49 Democratic Senators voted to avoid a shutdown, with Republicans 47 out of 51 Senators voted to avoid one, with the temporary budget bill which allowed for the government to reopen we only saw 2 Republicans who didn't vote for that while 15 Democrats didn't vote for it, things were more bipartisan but there was still a decent contrast between the parties, and as far as the last bill, it was a bit more complicated. Rand Paul, who tends to resist both Republicans and Democrats was largely responsible for this shutdown because he delayed the Senate vote past midnight but even with this latest bill more Democrats would have been okay with a shutdown. When the bill went to the house, it passed despite 67 Republicans not voting for it and 119 Democrats not voting for it....

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes/115-2018/h69

That shutdown ended fast with Trump signing the bill into law shortly after. Despite his counterproductive rhetoric, Trump has yet to cause any shutdown.

I'm not suggesting a yes vote is always a good thing, they could have come up with a better bill here but in regards to the budget, they have to keep things moving. Preferably by coming up with a reasonable bill or passing something temporary until a better deal is made, but if necessary by passing something that is as close to being ideal as both sides can agree to, and the Democrats have been less willing to do either. In fairness to the Democrats trends do change, Republicans resisted Obama in ways that weren't always fair and were most responsible for a shutdown in that administration. Republicans also had a resistance movement which went as far as to claim Obama wasn't an American citizen, but they didn't go as far as to spy on Obama and use the FBI to do a special investigation based on weak evidence and propaganda, Bush and the Republicans didn't trigger anything like whats happening now. Between the memos, the investigation into Trump, the massive protesting movements on the left, the media, etc. etc., I have trouble not separating the two parties but I think the problems the left face are the worst at the top, most Democrats or left-leaning independents I talk to don't go that far, though some of them do emulate what they see on the news.

Although I think there's a small difference between the two parties, on some issues they are behaving the same. Also, I feel your position comes from a good place, you're one of the least divisive member's AD has. As soon as I start talking about a difference that puts one party even slightly ahead of the other, I run the risk of isolating or discouraging those who are left-leaning or who vote Democrat. For what it's worth to those who agree more with the Democrats, nothing has to be permanent, I don't think either side is inherently worse or more divisive than the other. A hyperpartisan media which largely focuses on talking about conservatives in a negative way doesn't serve them well, colleges which indoctrinate their students with leftist ideologies, as they discourage or reject conservative ideas doesn't serve them well. I think a lot of these problems come from the top down on both sides so I'm hoping to see everyday Americans stand up against what's happening.

One thing is certain, we live in complicated times which challenge everybody in one way or another. In America we have so many people pulling in opposite directions, diversity is a good but very challenging situation we face.
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Trouble
post Feb 12 2018, 06:18 AM
Post #32


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QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Feb 8 2018, 11:27 AM) *
QUOTE(Trouble)
The hostility in the air you've described I would argue was intentional and being orchestrated by governing bodies everywhere, especially in Britain. The poisoning of the well moves all future challenges to a fragile governing structure in the hate category and therefore not part of the debate. This action creates more work at the sifting level by making Joe Q work that much harder when news hunting, and frustrates even the most dogged in the attempt to suss out a particular story.
I am glad you brought this up. There is the constant plan to keep voters looking at Democrats and Republicans and no one else. There is the faux hostility and banter to maintain the illusion that there are opposites. It is intentional and orchestrated.

Further, there is a concerted effort to paint the "opposition" as bad which must mean the other party is good. Terrible logic but many fall for it.




That would describe weaponised information plain and simple. Whoever was responsible fake news was really on the ball. In an informational environment that we know is suspect, injecting fake news has the following effects. First it allows one to erect red tape for external outlets like RT and Sputnik. Secondly it allows one to put into action a vetting process which ultimately shakes out small, independent journalists. The last effect is that if large organizations can't compete on accuracy they can poison the pie so the audience shrinks by tuning out. Ruthless yes, but at some point even the lay person will care how low standards have fallen.

---


QUOTE(Gray Seal)
"I have not found paywalls to be a barrier for getting information. If there has been a charge, I gladly pay if the information is important to me. I rarely pay anything to get information, good information, on the internet.

If a news source is found to be poor, quit using it. That is how the market can be cleansed of bad news.

I find more good information than I have time to read it. I would not have these good sources if not for the internet.

I have found even more information sources which I do not use as they are poor, to worthless, to propaganda. These are purged from list of places to learn what is going on.

Bad information should not control any of us. We should control them.

If you are trying to get enough information and the find right people to control the world you will fail. No one is capable of controlling the world. It can only be controlled by the involvement of everyone. There is no hidden information to get which will allow you to pick the right authoritarian leader to guide you properly.

We have more than sufficient information available to know the current body of politicians elected to office, whether state or federal, are bad. Even if there is hidden information which would prove it further there is not need for that information. Should we need to know someone is horrendous when we already know they are terrible?"


I understand why you would want to direct your attention either to or from a known source. My approach is somewhat more cautious in that most sources are not right most of the time. Somehow, somewhere mistakes get made and our "proven" sources become rah rah echo chambers where we no longer follow up to the degree we once did when encountering said writer for the first time.


--------


QUOTE(net2007)
"To address the parts in bold, I hope you're wrong on many of those points. I'm not saying that you are, some of the indicators for a collapse are there but what you're thinking will happen would likely lead to a lot of people getting hurt in one way or another. Believe me, I understand the concern and think that it should be taken seriously, just as with the potential for something like a nuclear war. We're outspending what we're generating with our economy, culturally and socially we're struggling because things are so divisive right now that many people who have different beliefs can't even communicate civilly, and politically the story is the same. Politicians often can't work together and some are more concerned about self-preservation than passing legislation that will benefit the country. All of that is true, but I'm seeing some contradictory information from my observations.

I believe some things started to take a turn for the worse even earlier than Obama's second term, the divisiveness that developed during the Iraq War in Bush's 2nd term is something I also look at. Putting aside whether or not the Iraq War was a mistake, those who disagreed began to head down the long and unfortunate road of viewing those who don't share their opinion as inferior, people who should be smeared, stopped, and never trusted. In regards to what you said, that got much worse under Obama without question. I think he exacerbated things 10 fold because he was too partisan and increased our nations focus on identity politics. It was 8 years of policies and special treatment for those who think or look like him, and 8 years of neglect for those who don't. He spoke about unity but it was unity for those who are more like him, so while charismatic, his rhetoric couldn't hide the one-sided nature of his administration, people were smart enough to figure it out.

What I'm hoping for is that this is a phase that we'll pull out of, there's some substantiation that backs that scenario as well if you look at historical trends within the U.S. rather than with fallen nations. The 60s were incredibly divisive, things were much like they are now but the tension died down from the 70's through the 90's so this could be another temporary period of divisiveness and decay. America, like every other nation, will indeed eventually collapse. Nothing lasts forever so whether it's caused by Americans, a foreign nation, or some terrible hit we take from a natural disaster like this,.....

http://fortune.com/2017/10/12/yellowstone-park-supervolcano/

one day we won't be able to hold it together. That time could be closer than I think but America has overcome rough periods before. What you brought up was an important mention, though personally I'm conflicted on whether we'll see a collapse within my lifetime or the lifetime of the next generation. I'm coming across too much contradictory information but I'd say to others to be smart and keep their eyes open regardless."



Net, all I will say is that if we can agree we are at a point of maximum divisiveness, we should observe who said what and when. It will matter when someone wants to propose XYZ program. However between now and then that requires significant amounts of energy, time, and internal reflection. This may sound odd but if you know the sky is blue there are certain situations where it makes more sense to watch the Chicken Littles of society than the truth tellers. Why? The serial fibbers usually have an agenda and the sooner you can tune into it the easier it will be to see and avoid it.

Might I also interject the notion that ongoing agendas may exceed anyone president and placing the blame at the feet of president may allow another to escape scrutiny? I have a theory that Obama was cornered in policy wise by GW Bush in the international arena. I agree he did nothing for the black community. Realistically, his stayed true to his donors by providing big bank bailouts when needed, fomenting petty violence into a race war, largely for distraction purposes, and allowed the sinking of single payer health care to a cartel of insurance interests. The guy was corporate interests all the way which in decades prior people would have labeled republican.

QUOTE(Julian)
There is a possible technical solution - I came across a thing called Agate One the other day that allows you pay-per-view access to a pay-walled site. If other paywall sites signed up too, you'd only need to pay Agate to top up your page view count, then dip into otherwise pay-walled content.



I had not heard of this before. I will follow up on this. Thank you.


QUOTE(Julian)
True, but we are where we are now, and the people who can't be bother or just can't see the walls of their bubble (who haven't taken the red pill?) also have votes and pay taxes. Rather than just accept that - or, most pertinently to this thread, make the partisan assumption that our side of a debate are clear-eyed guardians of the truth while the other side are, at best, victims of being trapped in their bubble and without the wit to see it, or worse, stupid, ignorant, cruel, etc. - we need to shout about it and try to get more of the good stuff in the open for everyone to make up their own minds.


You do realize how many have played the dissemination game and failed? I can easily see such an attempt becoming a double edged sword. Infowars at the conceptual level made sense and then it was driven by Alex Jones....the Breitbart platform came the closest to your intent of sharing the information and then the CEO died and Bannon made things very personal and partisan when he took over. While I didn't agree with all aspects of the Alt Right for pure practical purposes, I was blown away by the lectures of Andrew Joyce, Greg Johnston, and Kevin MacDonald at Counter Currents and then Charlottesville fiasco (because it became a hit job in the most literal sense) happened and just talking to said individuals made one a Nazi sympathizer. This is going to sound a tad cynical and defeatist but the aforementioned examples of being outspoken and erudite just puts you on someone else' radar. We live in a society Julian that penalizes accuracy and truth. It puts a target on your back. Hate laws are more about stifling facts and intimidation than stopping bigotry. I think Gray Seal is on to something by painting all opposition as bad because that moves us away from facts and into narratives. Then it is just a matter who has the largest bullhorn.

QUOTE(Julian)
Really? I thought it had really captured the public's imagination when a presidential candidate in a US election a couple of years back described every single piece of news coverage that did not shower him with totally unqualified praise as 'Fake News' and has continued to do so in office, to the point where he has given exactly one face-to-face interview in his first year with a foreign press correspondent. And that was Piers Morgan, a man with an ego as large and a skin as thin as Trump.


I'll disagree somewhat with your assessment. As egotistical as this President may be he had a lot of negative coverage coming in which was not justified. Seeing the coverage not stop upon attaining office, he had to rely on twitter as the only outlet for getting his view across. Haven't you wondered why the President talks like a pro wrestling heel? He wants negative memes to be taken up by the press to which he can then attack them on. Why? If you know you aren't going to get even handed coverage, find a way to build your credibility by deconstructing theirs. Even Pat Buchanon is on to this and this guy is way past the typical tech savvy age

QUOTE
Yes, maybe one day we might get to a better place. But what do we do in the meantime, while Presidents and potentates start wars via social media and refuse to talk to (or imprison, torture and murder) journalists?


It isn't the concept of resistance I am against. It is the pace and frequency of aggrievements which are requiring us to pick and choose our battles. And what you have described is an endless can of worms depending on where you sit at the table and who said it. Depending on which side of the table you end up on determines whether you take action or not. Or get angry or not, or emotional or not.

I guess my point is our countries ended up selling so many moral arguements we went from War on terror to Overseas Contingency Operations, to R2P bombing runs under UN auspices. Both parties are united in America when it comes to moral arguements and this perspective is seeping into every allied country because of shared profiteering. The West desperately needs to take a breather with regards to pontificating moral outrage.

QUOTE
Again, you or I know we are well-informed individuals with thoughtful opinions. But we don't know what we don't know, so we might be blowing smoke without even realising it. The loud idiots who have half-baked ideas don't think of themselves as that, remember. And the business model of the big internet companies is to not let us see how the information they let us see has been filtered. Because we're human, and if we know something is being hidden from us, we will fight to find out about it. But if we never know it is hidden, we will never know it is there at all. Back to The Matrix again - if we don't want 'Google' and 'Facebook' to end up being 'The Machines', we have to fight to keep and get information completely in the public domain and have some kind of neutral arbiter of salience. More neutral than any commercial or state entity has been historically, so I have no clue what the answer is, but it needs to be much more neutral than anything around today.


Filtered information has always been a clear and present issue. The internet brings us complexity through ever more sources. How we compile and come to terms with that is up to us. We can't act on what we don't know until someone with a camera phone is in right place at the right time. Problem solved? Well not exactly. While the old rules of journalism are thrown out the window we encounter a new set of problems. So if we acknowledge the fallibility of the situation we at least can come to terms with the limits of an ad hoc approach to information gathering. Maybe the clearest way to describe our response would be to call it a growing pain to a disruptive technology? It really is the ad hoc element that is throwing the industry for a loop, or outgrowth of counter intelligence which poses as citizens journalists like the White Helmets. I think it is a little too easy to dismiss China's ban of technologies like FB and Twitter as authouritarian because we can't see what these effects are doing to ourselves. Our self righteousness strikes me as a profound lack of awareness akin to an alcoholic and the people around them. For all the backwardness we love to attribute to Communist regimes, they understood something we did not.

As for breaking the monopoly on search engines, I've seen plenty of videos of people complaining about just that. My impression is there are plenty of people who are aware but not in a position to act. I would go as far as 1 in 10 are aware of the problem and are supportive. I see the problem as less of a do something issue and more of a watch which countries go crazy by spitting out piece after piece of junk legislation. Following the standards of monopoly and planned omission we arrive at the allied countries...

Surprisingly I'd say Canada and Britain are ahead of America in the omission department. Germany is ground zero for civil war. Sweden is going to be fun to watch. My observation is the countries with the worst projection issues also have broad hate speech laws. The boiler is going to burst sometime. There is a silent danger of a build up of pressure. My actions are thus adjusted accordingly.

I think the best use of your proactive approach would be to see more spoofing videos along the Pewdie Pie vein challenging Mattis or Tillerson types who send out demands in a discombobulated fashion to which the whole world must obey.

QUOTE(Julian)
Yes, there is. I read it on the internet


Facetiousness aside, I would argue there are radical generation divisions hampering our response. We have the difficult position of setting fire in a rain storm of bad ideas.

I get the sense my approach is more cautious than yours because I am waiting for the social media frenzy to either die out or grow up with a set of rules that have transited to social norms. Given much of the worst media reporting right now usually involves some anonymous social media quip, to solve the media puzzle it becomes a social issue which is dependent on time. Either that or on the ground reporting which has mostly dried up due to shrinking budgets.

QUOTE(Trouble)
But I would definitely classify their interactions as part of the greater psychological response which is affecting politics. There is a weird correlation between the young doing this weird form of virtue signaling and our political parties. Both can no longer handle debate. Both are searching for echo chambers. Both are degrading the climate of debate by forcing outside ideas into the extreme category. There comes a point when we have to live with offensive ideas. I don't care which idea we tap into, the climate which allowed us to make arguements of our own is waning which means everyone here are dinosaurs. We usually look to the young as driving force for change. But what if the change they call for is mostly unconstructive, dangerous and stupid? Then the notion of compromise is a fools game. Isn't that the very definition of a predicament?


QUOTE
Agreed 100%. I've always thought that 'No Platforming' from either side, be it Fox News refusing to give a non-hostile hearing to a left-wing view or leftie students 'refusing to invite' someone slightly to the right of Karl Marx to speak on campus in a debate where they have a pertinent expertise is going in the wrong direction.

The only effective measure of whether true freedom of speech exists in our society is that we are confronted by opinions and speech we find offensive, outrageous, or plain wrong.

Under normal circumstances I'd agree that speaking up and maintaining the right for all to be heard is the way to go. But there comes a point when no one listens because they can't differentiate between fact and opinion, and opinion and news speak. To be honest with you I think we are nearing that point when no one cares to listen what we have to say. I do not have an answer for apathy. It pains me to watch university scream sessions that have no equivalent in prior eras. The current generation of Millennials have a substantial portion of people who do not care for what you are advocating.

The government has successfully polluted the waters to such a degree that they have entrapped a generation of people to wanting what they want. If we treat propaganda as a pollution problem we see full infiltration to the zooplankton level. Maye this gets back to your earlier point... If we can agree on a heavy saturation of ideas taking a broad sweeping action may be impossible to clean up. We are then left with two choices, either leave the affected area, or fight it with as best we can knowing we will be saturated.

In a polarized society when a time-out happens to be the best choice I'd rather that happen before a violent episode occurs rather than later. If a mass reorganizing of society is taking place we might have to let the waters recede before future dialog can take place.

QUOTE(Julian)
Oh yes. Our press is poisonous and has been for decades, and our institutions have been "media trained" - IOW, have learned how to ignore any questions and just parrot the agreed line - to match, which has just amplified the frustrations of the people with the governing body which we the impetus for press poison in the first place.


The problem is the press can get dirty and reverse project the partisanship load back onto the hecklers who don't play ball. That is exactly how you get on the persona non grata list. If you question, you have must be a partisan. Las Vegas shooter anyone??? Then again, I also remember this is where the think tanks and lobbiests get into the picture because these people have careers which thrive on loaded questions. So does being removed from the debate actually facilitate further corruption of the system by removing a meaningful counterpoint? I remember our former Prime Minister was a master at this. You were either part of the echo chamber or you were part of the problem. I hate to say it, but we are well past Goebbels tactics nowadays.

QUOTE
Yup. Scientists often get things wrong, but the urge of journalists to invite two opposing views to generate a 'debate' on every news item is actively dangerous when 98% of the evidence repeatably and demonstrably supports one side, and 98% of the other side's evidence isn't actually evidence at all, but just a critique of the majority view, all to protect the vested interests (who usually fund the scientists who oppose the majority view) of those who stand to lose money if the majority view wins out and is accepted as government policy. (AGW). Or because the proponent is a junk scientist who wants to sell a book (vaccinations). And all that happens because journalists, even science journalists, rarely have any science training at all, they just know that a good controversy gets ratings, readers, clicks etc. Kids are dying of preventable disease around the world because one British doctor faked a study about the MMR vaccine, linked it to the fashionable and newsworthy (and only recently taken seriously, at the time) story of the autism spectrum disorders, for which he had no reliable evidence, and millions of parents who were already suspicious of 'The Man' /'Gubmint' laid down the lives of their children based on Fake News.

This is too serious a matter to just shrug and say "well, they should be better at using more than one search engine" or "they should get behind the paywall". Kids died, and still are dying, because people believe what other people tell them, if they trust that person enough. The same will be true of AGW, in my view - though (apparently) the science isn't settled, it's all happening naturally, it isn't happening at all, etc. **PLEASE NOTE*** don't reply to the substance of the AGW debate here - the point is that people can be gullible on all sides and the media - all of it, not just the bits we think of as "fake" or "mainstream" - will stoke controversy where there was consensus if they think it will fly.


Bad news and fake news both contribute into the greater thread of psychological projection. Can we agree that intransigence is a corruptive element in society where you can lie and not be held to account? The effectiveness of speaking out while obvious, may wax and wane with time. This is a ongoing problem for all countries but I'd put the Western countries in a special category of hooped. I would classify this as a technological problem, somewhat a financial problem, and somewhat a cultural problem. Some countries may fair better than others and I suspect they won't be as Western as we'd like.

This post has been edited by Trouble: Feb 12 2018, 06:14 PM
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net2007
post Feb 12 2018, 05:00 PM
Post #33


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Trouble

QUOTE
QUOTE(net2007)
"To address the parts in bold, I hope you're wrong on many of those points. I'm not saying that you are, some of the indicators for a collapse are there but what you're thinking will happen would likely lead to a lot of people getting hurt in one way or another. Believe me, I understand the concern and think that it should be taken seriously, just as with the potential for something like a nuclear war. We're outspending what we're generating with our economy, culturally and socially we're struggling because things are so divisive right now that many people who have different beliefs can't even communicate civilly, and politically the story is the same. Politicians often can't work together and some are more concerned about self-preservation than passing legislation that will benefit the country. All of that is true, but I'm seeing some contradictory information from my observations.

I believe some things started to take a turn for the worse even earlier than Obama's second term, the divisiveness that developed during the Iraq War in Bush's 2nd term is something I also look at. Putting aside whether or not the Iraq War was a mistake, those who disagreed began to head down the long and unfortunate road of viewing those who don't share their opinion as inferior, people who should be smeared, stopped, and never trusted. In regards to what you said, that got much worse under Obama without question. I think he exacerbated things 10 fold because he was too partisan and increased our nations focus on identity politics. It was 8 years of policies and special treatment for those who think or look like him, and 8 years of neglect for those who don't. He spoke about unity but it was unity for those who are more like him, so while charismatic, his rhetoric couldn't hide the one-sided nature of his administration, people were smart enough to figure it out.

What I'm hoping for is that this is a phase that we'll pull out of, there's some substantiation that backs that scenario as well if you look at historical trends within the U.S. rather than with fallen nations. The 60s were incredibly divisive, things were much like they are now but the tension died down from the 70's through the 90's so this could be another temporary period of divisiveness and decay. America, like every other nation, will indeed eventually collapse. Nothing lasts forever so whether it's caused by Americans, a foreign nation, or some terrible hit we take from a natural disaster like this,.....

http://fortune.com/2017/10/12/yellowstone-park-supervolcano/

one day we won't be able to hold it together. That time could be closer than I think but America has overcome rough periods before. What you brought up was an important mention, though personally I'm conflicted on whether we'll see a collapse within my lifetime or the lifetime of the next generation. I'm coming across too much contradictory information but I'd say to others to be smart and keep their eyes open regardless."



Net, all I will say is that if we can agree we are at a point of maximum divisiveness, we should observe who said what and when. It will matter when someone wants to propose XYZ program. However between now and then that requires significant amounts of energy, time, and internal reflection. This may sound odd but if you know the sky is blue there are certain situations where it makes more sense to watch the Chicken Littles of society than the truth tellers. Why? The serial fibbers usually have an agenda and the sooner you can tune into it the easier it will be to see and avoid it.

Might I also interject the notion that ongoing agendas may exceed anyone president and placing the blame at the feet of president may allow another to escape scrutiny? I have a theory that Obama was cornered in policy wise by GW Bush in the international arena. I agree he did nothing for the black community. Realistically, his stayed true to his donors by providing big bank bailouts when needed, fomenting petty violence into a race war, largely for distraction purposes, and allowed the sinking of single payer health care to a cartel of insurance interests. The guy was corporate interests all the way which in decades prior people would have labeled republican.


Fair enough on both points.

With what you said on paying attention to serial fibbers, I very much agree that in certain situations one of the best ways to avoid the agenda of a serial fibber is to observe how they function. I tend to be pretty quick to pick up on falsehoods and the little games people sometimes play, "projection" being among a long list of things to look out for. For some preservation of an agenda can take priority over the truth and that's one of my pet peeves. For example, either Trump or Hillary can be wrong on something they're saying or doing yet there are those who won't call them out on it. Therefore, on a different note, the agenda itself isn't always an issue, I wish it was better understood that even if someone decides to support an agenda, that doesn't mean they have to defend an advocate of that agenda when they do or say something wrong. People get in trouble and sacrifice their own integrity when they do that.

On your other point, in regards to Obama, (or any other politician for that matter), I can agree that they're not solely responsible for the problems we face, many things are out of their control. Not only should the president be considered, but to expand on my prior comment, other politicians along with the general public all contribute to the good and bad aspects of our county at any given time. I'd say the tone is set largely by those with power though. Whether it be the President, media pundits, college professors, or priest, anyone who can have an influence on a large group of people could potentially use that advantage to misguide those who believe in them. I'd say that generally, we're in agreement on these types of topics.
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Trouble
post Feb 12 2018, 06:30 PM
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QUOTE
Fair enough on both points.

With what you said on paying attention to serial fibbers, I very much agree that in certain situations one of the best ways to avoid the agenda of a serial fibber is to observe how they function. I tend to be pretty quick to pick up on falsehoods and the little games people sometimes play, "projection" being among a long list of things to look out for. For some preservation of an agenda can take priority over the truth and that's one of my pet peeves. For example, either Trump or Hillary can be wrong on something they're saying or doing yet there are those who won't call them out on it. Therefore, on a different note, the agenda itself isn't always an issue, I wish it was better understood that even if someone decides to support an agenda, that doesn't mean they have to defend an advocate of that agenda when they do or say something wrong. People get in trouble and sacrifice their own integrity when they do that.


The good news is party affiliation is dropping. It took the independence of a billionaire for the Republicans to succeed. It took the Clinton Foundation to step in and fund the DNC nominations against Bernie Sanders because fund raising was so low they could not hold the convention. The only people who are not realizing this development are in position where they are paid not to notice.

QUOTE
On your other point, in regards to Obama, (or any other politician for that matter), I can agree that they're not solely responsible for the problems we face, many things are out of their control. Not only should the president be considered, but to expand on my prior comment, other politicians along with the general public all contribute to the good and bad aspects of our county at any given time. I'd say the tone is set largely by those with power though. Whether it be the President, media pundits, college professors, or priest, anyone who can have an influence on a large group of people could potentially use that advantage to misguide those who believe in them. I'd say that generally, we're in agreement on these types of topics.


The next issues coming up will be how current Presidents handle the legacy costs of empire. At some point I'd love to get into a comparison of the Kerry era under Obama who made every effort to fracture Iraq to today where Tillerson is attempting to fracture the Kurdish area of Syria. There is some consistency behind the rhetoric and it needs discussing! But that is outside the confines of this thread.
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net2007
post Feb 13 2018, 05:21 PM
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QUOTE(Trouble @ Feb 12 2018, 01:30 PM) *
QUOTE
Fair enough on both points.

With what you said on paying attention to serial fibbers, I very much agree that in certain situations one of the best ways to avoid the agenda of a serial fibber is to observe how they function. I tend to be pretty quick to pick up on falsehoods and the little games people sometimes play, "projection" being among a long list of things to look out for. For some preservation of an agenda can take priority over the truth and that's one of my pet peeves. For example, either Trump or Hillary can be wrong on something they're saying or doing yet there are those who won't call them out on it. Therefore, on a different note, the agenda itself isn't always an issue, I wish it was better understood that even if someone decides to support an agenda, that doesn't mean they have to defend an advocate of that agenda when they do or say something wrong. People get in trouble and sacrifice their own integrity when they do that.


The good news is party affiliation is dropping. It took the independence of a billionaire for the Republicans to succeed. It took the Clinton Foundation to step in and fund the DNC nominations against Bernie Sanders because fund raising was so low they could not hold the convention. The only people who are not realizing this development are in position where they are paid not to notice.


I want to like Trump, although he and the Republicans are starting to spend too much without figuring out how to counter that spending, he's getting things done on policy, things that haven't been touched in decades in some cases. They're definitely not alone in the overspending and overall things are improving on border security, the economy, regulation cutting, and ISIS, etc. etc. Those are conservative positions I think are important.

The problem for me is that he says ridiculous things which sabotage his own cause, his approval rating would easily be 60% if he quit picking fights on things which distract. I agree with some of his focus on the media for sure, and in my opinion, Trump should continue to be assertive and fight back on things which are unfair but it's the way he's going about doing things which is problematic. The focus on the NFL was unnecessary and had the effect of causing more players to kneel, in some cases not because they're showing support for groups like Black Lives Matter, but to protest the President. It also defeated the purpose of those who want politics and divisive issues off of the football field because he responded by bringing politics and division into football. On another note, in relation to partisanship, he is the polar opposite of Obama. Trump is offering to legalize the Dreamers but his rhetoric seldomly reflects anything that could encourage Democrats. I think he's missing out on pulling some of them over to support him.

People who have talked to Trump in person have often said he's completely different when he's not tweeting or giving a speech. I've seen some of that when they televise some of the meetings they have. If that Trump was tweeting and making public statements, he would be able to pull more people together. Although actions are more important than words, words can do damage.

In short, he's complicated, some days I think he's doing good, other days he ticks me off, lol hmmm.gif
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Gray Seal
post Feb 13 2018, 11:06 PM
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QUOTE(Trouble)
I understand why you would want to direct your attention either to or from a known source. My approach is somewhat more cautious in that most sources are not right most of the time. Somehow, somewhere mistakes get made and our "proven" sources become rah rah echo chambers where we no longer follow up to the degree we once did when encountering said writer for the first time.
All news sources have a perspective. There is no one with whom I agree all the time. Skepticism is built in. No one gets a free pass from me.

After hearing or reading someone over an expanse of time you can gain and understanding of where they come from. I do frequent those who are idealistic. They are not driven predominantly by money. Those who are in the business of news are in it for money but that does not mean they are driven by it. I prefer those who are consistent with values they present, even if they are not completely the same as mine.

Empty heads and tripe talkers are easy to figure out and avoid. It is gosh awful when a station has a table full of 'em. That happens a lot.

Yet, they are on the air. People like empty heads and regurgitated stomach wall. These people are on the air because many people like them. Not a whole lot but enough that between the money from the modern fascists and the zombies they predominate.

The modern fascists are a tough lot to beat. The money from government gives them an advantage in traditional mass communications of radio and television. It is why the internet is vital as money can not push other ideas off the internet like ideas are pushed from mass media.

------

net2007, please do not try to like Trump. It has nothing to do with his delivery, appearance, presentation. Trump likes war and wants more money poured into it (like Obama, Bush). Trump likes a central bank running things (like Obama, Bush). Trump likes to spend money. Federal spending will be up 20% over Obama's last year. Trump is economically ignorant (like Obama, Bush). War is worth mentioning again. Trump will be spending 45 billion on the war in Afghanistan this year. Money poured into the sand (like Obama, Bush). Billions on a wall? Against federal healthcare but wants it. Not a clue of freedom of travel.

Trump's policy agenda is more of the same and wrong. Who cares about delivery, appearance, presentation? Policy is what is important. Do not struggle to see the sun when the picture is the inside of cave. There may be some hint of light but there is no sun.
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Mrs. Pigpen
post Feb 14 2018, 02:07 PM
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This forum is old enough that I remember when social media first got started.
Posters began creating their own blogs. Then Facebook happened.
I stated at the time (and for the record, I still hate social media with a passion) I believed it was all a phase and people would tire of it.
I was wrong. REALLY wrong. Hobbes got it right (he asserted it was just getting started...if memory serves, it has been a long while).

I didn't really foresee the effect it would have on society at large though.
What we have are pretty much EXCLUSIVELY little confirmation bias environments filled with partial information to fit our own world view.
For a person like me, there are partial information confirmation bias environments that only fit portions of my world views....I have to skip around.
So, I have to hold my pen for some of the time (these confirmation bias environments can get very angry when you don't confirm their world view).

I haven't really found a forum like this one (outside of here). But, as NT mentioned recently on another thread the world has kind of moved on.
This is the new normal.
Unlike NT though...I haven't found a real place to "hang". People like to believe they are open minded, but what they really like is a small challenge that then confirms their world view.

China has an interesting "solution" that is very Orwellian (Orwellian being almost too easy a reference these days....we need a new world for Orwellian).
They tie credit scores to "social rank". Really like something out of Black Mirror.
If you break the rules on the train, for example, or say something un-PC on social media, or something that challenges the government or whatever the government deems inappropriate, your credit score is impacted.
Since this score goes into a formula citizens carry around with them they have great incentive to be good little robots for the state.

Edited to add:
A post I read on a blog elsewhere, coupled with NT's polemic on the Confederate statues thread, brought this all to mind.
Communities thrive on interdependence and trust.
This is a problem in the new paradigm of confirmation bias and I-can't-trust-you-if-you-believe-absolutely-anything-differently-than-I-do.
The pertinent portion of the post (it's a military blog):
" My generation has the lowest job loyalty of any since those metrics were being measured. We move, we travel, we marry and have children later, and we care more about our careers. Staying in a service that pays us below the federal poverty line is a stupid life decision."

We've really reaped what we've sown as a society.
No longer the age of the pension, loyalty is also becoming an anachronism. Why care about your community? You'll just move again...
Very bad recipe for a future world.

Edited (again) to add:
I've just decided to give up posting on the internet (or reading any social media or blogs) for Lent.
See ya all in a few weeks.

This post has been edited by Mrs. Pigpen: Feb 14 2018, 02:59 PM
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Gray Seal
post Feb 14 2018, 04:08 PM
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Do you like church? I like some church. Church, to me, is where you can be with people who all think the same. It is a place where a bunch of people can celebrate the oneness they share. We all think alike and we are all wonderful! Yeah!

I also like variety. A variety of thinking. Solving problems, especially problems involving masses of people, requires brainstorming and a mix of thoughts. Just going to church does not cut it if you want to solve problems of the masses. You need to be as close to everyone-on-board as possible if you like peace or wish to achieve a low level of conflict.

One way to recognize hypocrites is when they throw out so-called-principles but apply them only to members of their own church.

Advantage via church is a well functioning axiom for many. Join the right church and you can get ahead of those who do not. Church can look good though Church advantage ultimately leads to conflict. When some are at a disadvantage they lash out.

Confirmation bias environments reveal the lure of belonging to church. It is us against them.

My confession is that I am guilty of wanting everyone in my church. The church of freedom where everyone, under the law, is treated the same while the law is nothing more than a protection of freedom.

Others have their own church. Some wish to remain a small group. Some wish for everyone to join. But all of them seem to me to be hypocritical when they say they are looking out for good. Good means you have to sacrifice individualism, sacrifice choice. I can not see that "good" to actually be good.

Many think that the struggle of conflicting churches is the only way humans can interact at the massive scale.

ad.gif is a good place as we can share thinking which is diverse. We know someone, maybe a lot of someones, will not like our ideas. We take the time to state them, anyways. Someone may gain some insight by reading about those ideas. We may be here because we know the value of reading others ideas. We may be here just to evangelize for our church.

Hypocrites can be those who claim to look out for everyone but truly only care for those in their church. Is in-your-face I only care about members of my church any better than hypocrites?

-------

The China plan. It would not have surprised me if the credit score plan came from any of the Europe state, or the United States. Central banks are ruling.

My own little story on credit scores: A ways back my credit card company cancelled my card. I had it for 10 years and never missed payments (maybe once or twice). I called and they said my credit score was too low. I was taken aback as I do pay my bills. What the heck? It turns out that my credit score was tanked because I was behind on paying my income tax. I was behind to the state and the state was using my credit score to put pressure on me. So, I learned the lesson that credit scores are nearly meaningless. I learned the state was too full of itself. Everyone was paid, including the feds. I can't care less about my credit score.

------

Sorry for my rambling thoughts. I usually try to be more cohesive than this but felt like blurting today.

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net2007
post Feb 18 2018, 02:02 AM
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QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Feb 13 2018, 06:06 PM) *
net2007, please do not try to like Trump. It has nothing to do with his delivery, appearance, presentation. Trump likes war and wants more money poured into it (like Obama, Bush). Trump likes a central bank running things (like Obama, Bush). Trump likes to spend money. Federal spending will be up 20% over Obama's last year. Trump is economically ignorant (like Obama, Bush). War is worth mentioning again. Trump will be spending 45 billion on the war in Afghanistan this year. Money poured into the sand (like Obama, Bush). Billions on a wall? Against federal healthcare but wants it. Not a clue of freedom of travel.

Trump's policy agenda is more of the same and wrong. Who cares about delivery, appearance, presentation? Policy is what is important. Do not struggle to see the sun when the picture is the inside of cave. There may be some hint of light but there is no sun.


We disagree on a few things here but no worries. To explain, I don't know so much about appearance but delivery and presentation can be very important. Policy and actions are most important, I'll meet you halfway on that and understand where you're coming from but I wouldn't write off the significance of presentation or even more so, delivery. There needs to be something solid behind those things but they are important. That's because, in order to get a policy noticed in the first place, a politician would have to convince the public of why that policy would be a good thing.

As an analogy, a car dealership is fairly comparable in that they're trying to sell us a product which concerns our safety and lifestyle, just as with politicians who are trying to sell policy ideas to the public and fellow members of the House, Senate, or Presidency. For the analogy, would you buy a car from a dealership with the following characteristics? The name of the dealership is (We Sell Crappy Cars In A Way That Will Scare You), you get there and two of the dealers are in a fist fight, while the third dealer runs up to you and starts singing the theme song to the Flinstones about two inches from your face. As for "delivery", when the dealer finally stops singing and you have a moment to compose yourself, he then gives you the wrong price for the car, (a few thousand more than what it should be sold for), and to top it off he says that after buying the car you'll get to bring it home in a few months.

That sounds ridiculous and over the top with a side of misinformation, but to a lesser degree, Trump has a similar problem. He cuts people off when he speaks and says things which turn people away. Take notice of what happened with the NFL, which I mentioned earlier, when Trump got involved more players kneeled because of the way he went about addressing that issue. We've seen that in quite a few cases his approach has often backfired. Those types of things have no doubt drawn people away from him, I'm glad he's doing things like exposing the news media but when he starts picking fights with Mika Brzezinski from MSNBC by saying things like...

QUOTE
"how come low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe, came...to Mar-a-Lago 3 nights in a row around New Year's Eve, and insisted on joining me. She was bleeding badly from a face-lift. I said no!"


That has no relevance to how Joe and Mika report the news, which is extremely biased in favor of the left. Comments like that are probably one of the many reasons he doesn't have a high approval rating amongst women.

On my comment on Trump, I try to like most people, as far as he's concerned ultimately I feel he was chaotic enough for me to vote for one of the independent candidates instead, (Gary Johnson). That being said I don't disagree with everything he's doing on policy. You've been trying to explain to me what would be ideal, I'm trying to explain who we have to work with at this point. The people wanted either Hillary or Trump and they both have low favorability ratings and a LOT of flaws. In light of new information, Hillary's favorability rating has dropped several points below where she was already marked, which wasn't very high. The Clintons are finished and regardless of the warning signs a lot of people supported her regardless.

Hillary would have likely brought the same type of spending you don't like, combined with policies that give little to nothing to those who have conservative values, she was following in Obama's footsteps. She would have replaced the obviously chaotic approach of Trump with more clever snarky comments and shady actions against the right. One of the problems with her is that she's good at lying and manipulating, while Trump is easier to figure out. Neither approach is ideal but she could have been much more dangerous, not only because of the lying but because of the extremely corrupt nature of the Clintons generally speaking. Trump is no saint, in fact, he's not the one I wanted up there but Hillary was easily the most corrupt politician in modern American history, one who would have offered little to nothing to conservative America.

As I mentioned, I agree with Trump on some of his policy and he's brought attention to issues which haven't been touched in a long time. What do you think about the regulations? He's cut 22 regulations for every new one and thus far has cut more regulations than any president at this point in their presidency (best I can tell). It's not just conservative media outlets saying this, generally left-leaning news outlets are even admitting there's truth to the claims he's made on that. Granted they start out by listing a number of other issues he's not done good on, to brace themselves for the good news they have to give, but they have covered it....

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-ch...m=.cb05928e2f23

http://freebeacon.com/politics/trump-cuts-...-every-new-one/ (for a conservative perspective on this)

Small government seems very important to you, believe me, I understand it's inflated. While Trump hasn't done well on the national debt, the only thing I can express to you is that you'd get less of what you want with the Democratic party if small government values are the most important thing to you, (which I'm sure you understand). I explained that the two parties have differences because they often vote for different things and sometimes even behave differently, to a degree. I don't think Trump, Bush, and Obama are exactly the same, Trump suffers from some of the same problems they have though, as well as Bush compared to Obama, they were both insiders who were more deep state than Trump. Trump does many of the same things every other politician has done but he's very different in other aspects, as with the regulation cutting I showed you. He's fighting a system that's been in place for a long time as well, (or at least fighting it in some ways), he's more than willing to spend money and isolate those who don't agree with him. In short, I hold a very complicated view on this.

I can get on board if you were to say that the two parties share similar problems, both have corruption, or that there are underlying factors pitting Republicans and Democrats against each other. I could agree that the fighting has gotten out of hand, or that we're in a two party system that may not be serving us as well as something new could. I'm just very analytical and believe there are distinct differences as well. Also, it'd be nice if someone did come along to balance the budget and not spend more than we can produce, when that person comes along, I'll gladly support them. Problem is that they all say they're going to be responsible but rarely live up to that. dry.gif
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Gray Seal
post Feb 21 2018, 08:47 PM
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Hey net2007. We will always quibble. Even disagree. There is so much common ground, too.

I do not think politicians try to convince the public about their policy being a good thing. Politicians try to convince the public they are giving out advantage. Good politicians convince enough voters that their particular demographic group is getting the advantages. Politicians could not care less about policy and philosophy other than the philosophy of, "What gets me more power and votes?"

The analogy with a car salesperson is correct for those salespersons who only care about the sale, not what is good for the customer. The clique used car salesman.

Politicians do not put forth their own philosophy. Politicians try to sound like they have a philosophy which is selling well as a current trend.

Politicians win with perception and not philosophy. Politicians mirror the electorate. The electorate lacks a philosophy other than, "What is in it for me?"

Both voters and politicians see government as a means to getting ahead. They generally lack policy based upon fair opportunity and protections for all.

Appearance is just that. Appearance. So what if one politician is a better salesman than the next? If policy is the same there is no real difference.

If a nicely dressed thug has a nice voice and sings to you during the mugging is this a good thing? Does the lack of anything left on your person afterward really matter between the singing thug and the shabby cursing one?

An informed and inquisitive public will avoid the bad policy politicians and the used car salesmen. It is a responsibility to support better.
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