Topic: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Mod post:

This thread has one rule:

Belittling of private figures will not be tolerated.

Everybody using this forum is a private figure.

If you're in any way confused about the implications of this rule, I'll include additional details in the spoiler box below. (Note: If you fail to read these details and then mess-up later in the thread, I'll be holding you accountable for having not read it, so... seriously: if you're confused, read the box.)

The Rule Show
If [whatever you express] targets and belittles any private figure, it will be edited.

No warning.

I'll show up in your post with bright red text and explain: 1) that I have edited your post; 2) what edits I have made; and: 3) why I made them. Express "harsh" opinions "harshly," if you want — you do you; it's your speech; these are harsh times — but keep a weather eye on your aim.

So, what's a "private figure?" Anybody who doesn't draw a public paycheck somewhere on Earth. Pursuant to these rules, Jared Kushner — for example; or Nigel Farage, or Marine Le Pen — is still "a public official," as far as a FIYH forumer from Croatia would be concerned. The "public" in-question doesn't have to reflect your national public; if [the person you're addressing] is beholden to the public, somewhere, they're public.

Until they draw a public check, another FIYH forumer is not a public official under any set of circumstances.

Last chance:

If your expression-of-opinion targets and belittles anybody on this forum — rather than their argument — you've fucked up. Get harsh with their opinions as you see fit, but if you go 'beyond' their opinion (into their 'motivations,' or anything along those lines), be warned: I will be actively seeking opportunities which allow me to demonstrate that the forum is being kept safer for them than you. I will take their side.

...and I love you, you idiot, so... for fuck's sake, don't make me do this. It's just one rule. Let's be cool, right?

tl;dr:

Express your opinions into the conversation — not onto the conversant.

If you're not sure whether something crosses the line, you probably should rewrite the 'iffy' bit.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

[placeholder for future mod-stuff-as-necessary, if necessary]

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Non-Mod post:

Look, at this point, we represent the dwindling raft of debris still floating in the post-DIF stormwaters, and — for sanity — we've gotta cling onto each other as much as possible. I intend for this thread to be perfectly accommodating to people of any political persuasion — look: we're all concerned about the future of democracy — just as long as those political persuasions are expressed according to the aforementioned etiquette.

I want to be very clear: regardless of any disagreement you-and-I might come to, you can always expect me to drop "my" "role" in that disagreement, when it comes to mod concerns. In my capacity as a mod, I mean to be fully responsive to people who espouse opinions which, in my capacity as a poster, I'm literally yelling my disagreement about. (If it comes to that.) If you come to me for a mod-thing and are unsatisfied with my response, I also intend to leave any [rule-abiding] "public appeals" you make (in response to that dissatisfaction) public and unedited. I'll make my case as well — and, obviously, 'mod-rule' stands, until successfully appealled — but, while you won't get the last word on the ruling, your voice in this thread will never be silenced unless it's in direct violation of the rule above, even if your voice is being used to criticize the mods.

For any other person with mod-powers on this board, I expect the very same to apply. Strict separation of decisionmaking in "mod-capacity" versus "poster-capacity" is the minimum sufficient criteria for mod-powers on this board. If you have a problem with any other mod, you can always appeal it to me — and they may lose.





In the meantime?





Go nuts. Disagree with people's opinions. Just don't belittle people.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Well, anyway.

Just to begin somewhere, here are my concerns:

SPOILER Show

https://media2.giphy.com/media/FQ0rG8csyZzMs/giphy.gif

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

As an American, I am so over our government. The current rhetoric of no compromise and fuck over the other team as much as possible is so deeply frustrating that I wish we could scrap the whole thing and start over.

"ShadowDuelist is a god."
        -Teague Chrystie

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

As an Englishman, I'm so over our government. Last time someone tried to scrap the whole thing, Hugo Weaving starred in a movie vaguely about it wearing an anonymous mask tongue

Hurroo

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Tbh I'm a fatalist at this point. Sure, the leftist wing of the Democratic party is finally showing some life, but the main establishment hasn't learned ANYTHING from the 2016 debacle. And if we lose the 2020 ballgame, that's it. (I mean, America is on the decline regardless, but the Republicans are gonna absolutely run it into the ground if they're allowed to remain in power.) The way so many liberals hung the entirety of their hopes on the Mueller investigation is emblematic of the whole thing—this fucking two-year pipe dream that assumed, even if Mueller found anything, a.) Republicans in Congress would allow anything to happen b.) the vast majority of the public even gives a damn.

So anyway, yeah. To quote Elizabeth Sandifer, "Let us assume we are fucked." Because even if we somehow do miraculously pull off a 2020 win, climate change is still looming on the horizon and even if a Green New Deal goes through it's a band-aid on a gaping throat wound.

(All this said, is my fatalism gonna prevent me from hoping like hell that the GOP somehow gets the boot and doing everything I can to ensure a liberal candidate wins? Of course not. I'm just not expecting anything to ultimately matter that much, wheeeeeeee.)

Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

I got practically nothing to say except it's weird being a moral conservative, fiscal liberal, and a strong believer that Sin is a thing that matters but that it shouldn't be legislated (unless it actively victimizes others, which most of the stuff the Right cries about doesn't). I can't stand the Right in this country either. I disagree with most of the Left's moral stances, but at least they're consistent. And unless they actually want to force me to sin like the Right is always screaming about, I really don't care if they're in power. 'Murica is not Christ's kingdom, despite how so many Conservatives act like it. I'm just gonna keep trying to love God and love others.

In the meantime, as much as I don't lose sleep over the state of the world (because I don't believe it's the world that matters), I sure as hell intend to help make it a better place as much as possible.

Much as I disagree with ye on a lot of things, you're still people. Hi!

Last edited by Writhyn (2019-03-25 19:13:42)

Witness me!

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

A few points:

1. Good strong imposition of the rules at the start, Teague. I started a Trump thread last year and it didn't take long until personal comments were made. Your rules are firm and fair.
2. If anyone wants some optimism, I'd like to refer them to Steven Pinker's ENLIGHTENMENT NOW book. He's one of the most intelligent public intellectuals about. There are plenty of his talks on youtube summarising his arguments. But in a sentence, the world has never been as good as it is now for a range of indicators: crime rates, war deaths, wealth, education, longevity, progressive laws, etc. As soon as you compare how things were like 50, 100, 500, 1000 years ago, today looks great! smile
3. I've been around long enough to see a few dozen elections in USA / UK / Australia so I've learned not to blame the politicians as it's the PEOPLE that keep voting for them. Any anger should be directed at the mechanisms by which people are "informed" by the media, school, entertainment, church, internet, university, etc. See Chomsky  for more on this point.
4. My own position is one of secularism, science education, environmentalism, aggressive fiscal redistribution (e.g. UBI), social libertarianism, and it feels like "my side" has been losing since the Reagan/Thatcher neoliberal revolution of the 1980s. Fox/Newscorp has poisoned the well of public debate and does an extremely effective job at it... e.g. to mobilize sick people to protest against improving their own healthcare, or to get poor people to advocate for tax cuts for billionaires is astonishing. I have a perverse "admiration" for how dirty the right can fight but it saddens me too. Had a Democrat done 1% of what Trump's said/done, there'd be hoards of pitchforks (and worse) on The Mall.
5. One of the issues I wrestle with is 'tolerance of intolerance'... anyone who's listened to Sam Harris will know how to unpack this. It's one of the paradoxes that the left must grapple with. I often agree and disagree simultaneously and still working through that issue.
6. But cheer up DiFers, as the big long picture over 50-100 years is indeed in the right direction. The good guys win in the end... I hope. If they don't, we'll all be outta here soon enough.

not long to go now...

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Your sig really helps hit home your last line! Avatar.

Extended Edition - 142 2018 Movies In Review
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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

This shit is just such a slog, y'know?

https://media0.giphy.com/media/d3YH7yLSazfGuj4I/giphy.gif

"Okay campers, rise and shine! And don't forget your fortitude because it's devastating out there today! (It's devastating out there every day — what is this, some Chekov shit? Not hardly!) So, really: Do you think any of our leaders are going to see themselves in the mirror today? Ha! That's right, doldrum-lovers — it's Tues-day!"

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Nothing to add here, agree strongly with avatar's #4 and #5 points.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Whoever the fuck this guy is — what he said.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

As for "tolerance of intolerance," I — for myself — generally find that to be a fairly easy question to answer.

Measure by the violence of the outcome.

Whom do you tolerate? Anybody who's intended outcomes can be stopped (if necessary) without violence. Some positions inherently increase the amount of exclusionary violence in the world — ahem: in the philosophical 'all-politics-is-violence' sense, that is — and some positions increase the amount of inclusionary consensus-attempt. Forget 'tolerance vs. intolerance,' and just seek positions which prevent violence — systemically — as best you can. If you only do half-well at this attempt, you're still way above the worrisome threshold... because it means that you care about allowing your ideas to be refuted without becoming violent in response.

PS #1: I'm not sure if this was too simplified. It was either gonna be this — one short paragraph — or one of my ginormous treatises that nobody enjoys reading. I'm happy to throw out a longer version if anybody's interested.

PS #2: Also, remember the etymology of "violent" — something 'violent' violates somebody's earnestly-willed outcome. Ultimately, to have violence enacted upon you is to be shut down, not injured. It's the ultimate violation of will. With that definition in mind, again: seek positions which prevent violence, systemically, as best you can.

In other words: Intolerability arises from the expected requirement of violence in the outcome of your position.

tl;dr:

If, after having adopted your position, society could not "stop engaging in it" without fundamentally rejecting its implicit terms of authority — i.e.: if your thing implicitly includes entitlement to violate — your thing sucked.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Teague wrote:

Whoever the fuck this guy is — what he said.

Unfortunately, every single word of this is absolutely true.

For the next hour, everything in this post is strictly based on the available facts.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

sellew wrote:

Unfortunately, every single word of this is absolutely true.

It certainly is a tour-de-force rant, delivered in a single-take without any disfluencies. I wouldn't make it past the first sentence before fluffing my lines.

However, I disagree with one fundamental point i.e. Brexit means the poor want to stick it to the establishment.

If that were true, then the Tories wouldn't have been returned to government in the 2017 General Election.

Austerity has been around since the GFC, and since then the Tories have won TWO elections. In fact, they're STILL ahead in the polls. Thatcher, the archetype of crushing the poor, won election after election after election.

If the Tories represent the 1%, why are half the 99% voting for them?

My take is that the poor vote what the press tell them to. If The Sun says vote Tory, they vote Tory, if The Sun says vote Brexit, they vote Brexit. Right-wing memes are more successfully propagated.

Likewise, we've even seen Trump voters in The South say they'll vote for him again, even if their standard of living is going backwards. Tax cuts for the rich are still getting through, endorsed by the bottom of pecking order.

not long to go now...

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Teague wrote:

As for "tolerance of intolerance," I — for myself — generally find that to be a fairly easy question to answer.

Measure by the violence of the outcome.

Whom do you tolerate? Anybody who's intended outcomes can be stopped (if necessary) without violence. Some positions inherently increase the amount of exclusionary violence in the world — ahem: in the philosophical 'all-politics-is-violence' sense, that is — and some positions increase the amount of inclusionary consensus-attempt. Forget 'tolerance vs. intolerance,' and just seek positions which prevent violence — systemically — as best you can. If you only do half-well at this attempt, you're still way above the worrisome threshold... because it means that you care about allowing your ideas to be refuted without becoming violent in response.

PS #1: I'm not sure if this was too simplified. It was either gonna be this — one short paragraph — or one of my ginormous treatises that nobody enjoys reading. I'm happy to throw out a longer version if anybody's interested.

PS #2: Also, remember the etymology of "violent" — something 'violent' violates somebody's earnestly-willed outcome. Ultimately, to have violence enacted upon you is to be shut down, not injured. It's the ultimate violation of will. With that definition in mind, again: seek positions which prevent violence, systemically, as best you can.

In other words: Intolerability arises from the expected requirement of violence in the outcome of your position.

tl;dr:

If, after having adopted your position, society could not "stop engaging in it" without fundamentally rejecting its implicit terms of authority — i.e.: if your thing implicitly includes entitlement to violate — your thing sucked.

It's very abstract Teague. Didn't know you were a Ethics Philosopher teaching a second year course on Utilitarianism. Could you give some real world examples? What I mean about tolerating intolerance, of course, (didn't want to go here) is the entire embracing cosmopolitanism, pluralism, immigration, welcoming refugees, etc... all noble ideals and where I lean, but then you have the issue of how to deal with some medieval mindsets: FGM, women as second class, segregation, etc. Surely we all embrace liberal values of gender equality, but then it feels like we throw women/LGBTQ under the bus if we also don't speak out about less savoury aspects of values from other cultures. Either way, one group gets shafted. There's a tension there. A Universal Bill of Rights is monolithic, almost imperialistic...something out of fashion now. And yet...

not long to go now...

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

(I'm gonna reply either way, but to be clear: do you mean, essentially,

Nobody wrote:

"That's all well and good, Teague, for anyone who happens to already be 'cosmopolitan' about such things... but what if they're not? Are you saying we should just force cosmopolitanism onto them? Isn't that a violation of their will, instead of someone else's? Doesn't this just kick the can down the road?"

...or do you mean somethin' else?)

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Take the specific example of 1M+ Syrian refugees taken into Europe. It's the highest ideal... fleeing a war-torn hellscape and seeking sanctuary and a new life in a modern safe prosperous free liberal western democracy. But invariably, there can be tensions, and if you take a side, you throw the other side under the bus.

Do unto others as you would like have done to yourself?
Do unto others as they would like?

There's a paradox with cosmopolitanism The full spectrum includes: (1) "you can't come in unless you sign up to our values", all the way to, "welcome, do what you want, knock yourself out"

When we visit Dubai, do we expect to hold hands on the beach? Or as guests, we must conform to local laws/customs, which means there are no universal human values we all share?

I'm still wrestling with this. But if you say you have an easy answer to it, I'd love to hear it.

not long to go now...

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Sigh.

The list just keeps getting longer.  I've been trying to start some kind of copypasta thing that I can refer to.

SPOILER Show

***********
Begin Socialism Copypasta
***********

End the wars, Extract troops, disband Disband military
This one's pretty impossible given the iron grip of the military industrial complex.  Nevertheless, the Patriot Act and our continued involvement in The War for the Greater Middle East / Global War on Terror, as well as the very existence of our Standing Army allows the continued justification of making HUGE portions of the government and economy SECRET.  This is so unacceptable and (personally upsetting). There is incredible fraud and corruption being carried out and covered up and gotten away with because the perpetrators were allowed to do their deeds in secret.  And we continue to authorize this blood on our hands congress after congress.  Our Arms Dealer foreign policy has even begun to bleed into pop culture with the rise of The National Rifle Association.  Not sure how we wind this down, but maybe some of it can be re-purposed to humanitarian effort via the Peace Corp/AmeriCorp/National Guard/Coast Guard/Army Corp of Engineers/Forest Service or something?

Universal Healthcare.
How are we so far behind on this one?  The current law allows the private sector to just skim 20% of the whole thing straight off the top in Profits???  "Government" might be inefficient, but surely we can do better.  Nationalizing the system would be a start.

Rebuild national infrastructure
We need a national transportation service.  It costs WAY too much to get around here.  Cars are now supercomputers on wheels.  There's no trains worth taking.  The in 2001 the government made it illegal to go to the airport.

Way more distributed Solar power.
But the batteries, man.  Fuuuuuuuuuuck.

Need to have a National ISPs
The reign of fucking Comcast must come to an end and it's time the public had another option.  Either incorporate a new Federal ISP or have the Post Office do it.

Public free checking under USPS
Or a Federal Bank.

Establish Dept for truth and reconciliation
Reparations need to happen.  They're gonna happen.  This is how they should start.


Take guns, Ban Arms Exports/Imports
No idea how this happens, but I'm really tired of living in a wild west show.  And I'm not talking about rattlesnakes/bears or hunting or ranchers, I'm talking about bringing yer gun to town to be prepared for a GUNFIGHT.  No more GUNFIGHTS.  GUN FIGHTS, are not a thing anyone should be having.  NOT EVEN THE POLICE.

Public college Would be Nice.
Sher would be good if you didn't have to pawn the rest of your life to go to school.


Universal sufferage/Voting Modernization/Diversity in Government/Gerrymandering
I have no idea how to fix this.  A good start would be, getting rid of the Senate and the Electoral Collage, moving to ranked choice voting nationwide, declaring an election holiday, using mail in ballots, amending the constitution to include the Voting Rights Act, and declaring universal enfranchisement for citizens.

Justice Reform
Seizure laws are fucked up. Police laws are fucked up. Prisons are fucked up. The War on Drugs is fucked up.  The police have too many cannons.

**************
End
**************

I guess the weird thing is that Trump/Brexit don't have very much to do with any of that.  Other than it's so disheartening to watch Him/It get to have the drivers seat on the news.  Also, CLIMATE CHANGE.

Last edited by bgii2000 (2019-04-15 23:36:34)

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

avatar wrote:

There's a paradox with cosmopolitanism The full spectrum includes: (1) "you can't come in unless you sign up to our values", all the way to, "welcome, do what you want, knock yourself out."

Am I correct in assuming that your usage of "cosmopolitanism" is essentially a euphemism for "liberal elitism?"

I think that "spectrum" is a lot simpler than you're making it: "Welcome, do what you want, knock yourself out, but don't hurt anyone."

Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

General question:

Out of curiosity, what did you know about Donald Trump prior to 2015? What was your impression of him?



***
(For what it's worth, I actually wrote a really long reply to avatar's post within 12 hours, but then I couldn't decide whether or not to post it, temporarily rejected it, and then forgot for a while. Later today, I'll pull it out of storage, dust it off, and see if I feel any better about posting it now. Sorry, av.)

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Teague wrote:

General question:

Out of curiosity, what did you know about Donald Trump prior to 2015? What was your impression of him?



***
(For what it's worth, I actually wrote a really long reply to avatar's post within 12 hours, but then I couldn't decide whether or not to post it, temporarily rejected it, and then forgot for a while. Later today, I'll pull it out of storage, dust it off, and see if I feel any better about posting it now. Sorry, av.)

Looking forward to it.

Before 2015, Trump led the whole birther movement, with all its dog-whistles. Jon Stewart covered his crazy twitter outbursts throughout the Obama years. Never watched Apprentice. At least with Trump, what you see is what you get (rather than some puppet President controlled by others e.g. Dubya and Cheney, or even Reagan. There's no evil secret conspiracy agenda... just an incompetent narcissistic buffoon stroking his own ego. (I'm trying to be generous here and look on the bright side).
The real issue is why 42-46% of the country will support anything he does. Hence my earlier question - is the average Joe Sixpack better off due to any of Trump's policies? Genuine question.
A lot of people are puzzled over the GOP's unconditional support, but that's easily explained...'it's the tax cuts and deregulation, stoopid'.

not long to go now...

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

avatar wrote:

A lot of people are puzzled over the GOP's unconditional support, but that's easily explained...'it's the tax cuts and deregulation, stoopid'.

Against my better judgement I will respond here. I am a person who is fiscally conservative and socially moderate. I think that the deregulation and the tax cuts are the parts that supporters will run to, largely because it is shown in economic growth. And that appeals.


I don't care for Trump personally, nor his rather bombastic way of tweeting out whatever. But, the idea that people are just blindly following Trump because of the "R" is not entirely accurate.


Regardless, the entire mess is polarizing and frustrating because there is no longer civil discourse. And, I have to lay that on Trump and Obama and the news media.

God loves you!

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

I agree with Fireproof's middle paragraph.

(UTC-06:00) Central Time (US & Canada)

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