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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Registered: 06/15/02
Posts: 15,608
Liberalism
    #1067538 - 11/19/02 10:14 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

Hi all,

I thought I would throw this out and see what kind of response I got.

Why I distrust liberals and people who populate the Left Wing:

(Let me add that I don't really trust Right-Wingers either)

I will candidly admit that no person, no matter how insightful, is capable of understanding every aspect of human behavior because it is something that does not always follow a predictable pattern. Each individual has a lifetime to be influenced by a myriad of environmental, cultural, and social occurrences which(even with conformity running rampant in my opinion) makes every person somewhat unique. I realize that by attempting to neatly categorize a large
amount of people, I might fall prey to generalization. But even with this admission, I still think that my observations are applicable to a large number of people who call themselves "liberal".

At a brief glance, liberalism appears very noble and altruistic. I believe that
people who are liberals truly do elicit genuine concern for humanity. They believe
that it is necessary for us to try to correct the injustices and inequities that plague
mankind. However, I have noticed some glaring weaknesses in their thinking that I cannot ignore.

There are various types of liberals. I have decided to narrow my descriptions to the slight, moderate, and extreme liberals, with the hopes that most of the other liberals that populate the world will fall somewhere in between.

Slight liberals have beliefs that hover more towards the center of the political spectrum. They espouse all of the standard centerpiece liberal beliefs (equal treatment of all people no matter what their personal beliefs, economic standing, etc.. may be). They respect freedom and demand that it be recognized. Ironically, the most recognizable trait of the slight liberal is apathy. They believe in these things and would like to see them instituted so that everyone in the world may benefit from them, but most of them don't do anything about it. They just won't admit that they are self-centered. Most of the time their beliefs are
purely aesthetic things which please their sensibilities and idle concerns, but that are not powerful enough to elicit concerted action.

As someone gets more towards the moderate and extreme liberal beliefs, they have a tendency to impose what I call the "Oppression Dialectic" on their observations of the world.

The moderate liberals use a more muted version of the "Oppression Dialectic".
They examine situations and seperate the participants into two parties; the people
"on top" or the winners(who possibly have unfair advantages), and the people who just couldn't succeed in the said situation, who deserve pity and sympathy. Moderate liberals don't like to see disadvantaged people experience disappointment, failure, and hardship(strangely enough, they sometimes take pleasure in seeing people they construe as being "on top", fail.). They
have a tendency to disapprove of winning; because when someone wins there is somebody who didn't win. Usually they sympathize with the perceived loser.

I can understand the moderate liberal's desire(which arises out of empathy) to shield people from disappointment and to root for the underdog, but attempting to eliminate failure from the human experience is not natural. I think that failure is a valuable part of life. It has the capability of teaching important lessons such as humility and wisdom. If looked back upon with a clear head, failure can help a person determine what they need to do or change in order to succeed. People were not meant to float through life while experiencing no disappointments. If all that everyone experiences is a rigged and controlled success, where failure is abolished and everyone is equal, it is not true success. It is a sham. You are taking a person's right to pursue what they want and what they want to
achieve, and relegating them to a forced equality with their fellow man. Sure, you raise some people out of the depths of failure, but you also limit other people's access to success and it's fruits. I can think of nothing that is more unnatural, restricting, stifling, and insulting to human ambition and self-determination.

Of all of the forms of liberalism, I think I am most qualified to talk about extreme
liberalism, because I used to be heavily influenced and controlled by it. To put it bluntly; I was young and naive and I didn't thoroughly question the tenets that I excitedly embraced.

The extreme liberals utilize the "Oppression Dialectic" in a much more shrill and
audacious way than the moderate liberals do. They examine a situation and seperate the participants into two parties; the power-hungry oppressors who sadistically and tyrannically pursue and wield absolute control, and the victimized and oppressed group, who have to live under such humiliating and inhumane circumstances. They always disapprove of the people they view as the oppressors and use every chance they have to discredit them. They exaggerate every mistake, shortcoming, and failure of the oppressors. They always side with the perceived underdog, and oftentimes sympathize with, attempt to justify, or outright ignore, any innappropriate behaviour of the members of the perceived oppressed community. They also exaggerate every hardship endured by, and every accomplishment of, the oppressed. Extreme liberalism can be summarized as a militant, warped, and misguided empathy that is brought about
by disaffected cynicism. It is a belief system that is almost always confined to young people, because the impetuousness and irrationality that taint it are also common symptoms of youth. On a certain level, I can admire and appreciate the energy, rigor, and determination of extreme liberals. But, it is hard to ignore the lack of wisdom, open-mindedness, and level-headedness, that mark it.

The main flaw of people who have ardent beliefs is that they oftentimes believe in the correctness of their ideals so much that they will not seriously consider or review any other points of view. People who are influenced or controlled by a system of thought tend to see what they want to see and not what is actually there. Liberals are no exception.


RandalFlagg

(My first post in months. yee haww!!)



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OfflineFred Garvin
Male Prostitute
Registered: 09/24/02
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1067568 - 11/19/02 10:19 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

Nice post.



--------------------


The above statements are just the incoherent babblings of your friendly neighborhood Cracker!

Shur drinkin kils brane sells--but only the week ones!!


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InvisibleEvolving
Resident Cynic

Registered: 10/01/02
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1067871 - 11/19/02 11:27 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

Very good, I'm glad you're back posting. :cool: 


--------------------
To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


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Invisiblecarbonhoots
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Registered: 09/11/01
Posts: 1,351
Loc: BC Canada
Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1068308 - 11/20/02 01:51 AM (19 years, 11 days ago)

Hmm, since you distrust liberals, I must be your opposition. Although I wouldn't call myself liberal, I'd maybe fit the profile...

Well, that was a nice speech, you've got some speaking skills, for sure...

In reply to:

They espouse all of the standard centerpiece liberal beliefs (equal treatment of all people no matter what their personal beliefs, economic standing, etc.. may be)They respect freedom and demand that it be recognized




Even conservatives would say they believe in equal treatment of all, and the recognition of freedom. Only an SOB wouldn't believe in these things.

The oppresion dialectic is an intresting idea, but what of it? I don't think that just because someone can recognize clear oppresion of a slavemaster variety, they examine everything in life that way, and are on a hopeless mission to eliminate all losers, (and in their blind passions but by necessity, kill the games or something)

And the extreme liberals sounds more like a mixture of maturity and passion than a seperate ideology...anyways, this speech hits me like it's an attempt to frame the situation in a context quite out of reality. The nice tone, the patronizing opening of the discription of liberals...all in an attempt to dismiss the notion of slavery/economic unfairness as some kind of psychotic condition of 'dialectic oppresion'


Could you imagine?
Man to wife...
"Do you know they pay 50 cents an hour in the Maquiladoras? And the people drink polluted water and live in filth? All the while Walmart and whoever else is profiting billions!"
Wife to man...
"Oh dear, calm down, you know you suffer from Dialectic Oppresive/conpulsive disorder"

Maybe someday the'll have a pill for that. The're probably working on them now. Haha

I think liberals, as you call them, can see the bigger picture and recognize that we don't have to wait for the market to do everthing. Cuz it won't anyways. There's nothing wrong with applying conscious thought to building a society, rather than wait for the market mechanism of a larger and larger private profit to happen. In some cases, it would never happen.
I've gotta go but I'll give you a quick example, I read it would cost 12billion US to provide the people of the world with a clean drinking water infrastructure. (those that don't already have one, that is)
We could wait till the cows came home and the market wouldn't have delivered it. The rich countries of the world could EASILY come up with the money, tomorow, and would if not for the greed of the ruling classes. How far would that go to diminish the threat of terrorism, clean water for everyone...a gift from first world to third. The 'war on a vauge emotional term' will cost something like that anyway...or way more...I've gotta go.


--------------------
  -I'd rather have a frontal lobotomy than a bottle in front of me

CANADIAN CENTER FOR POLICY ALTERNATIVES


Edited by carbonhoots (11/20/02 01:56 AM)


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InvisibleXlea321
Stranger
Registered: 02/26/01
Posts: 9,134
Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1068338 - 11/20/02 02:02 AM (19 years, 11 days ago)

The trouble is the so-called "winners" prefer to live in a communist paradise themselves. It's only the poor who must follow the dictates of the "free market". The rich themselves prefer communism - massive government intervention to close off markets and corporate welfare - rich corporations living off the largesse of the poor taxpayer, awarding themselves massive pay rises. They may talk a lot of shit about the "end" of communism but if you are in a rich corporation communism is very much alive and well. We now need to let the poor access this corporate communist paradise.

"All of this might be tolerable if meritocracy promoted genuine talent. Unfortunately for believers in free-market orthodoxy, no one has been able to discover a connection between executive pay and a company's performance. Between 1994 and 2001, the TUC found that the median annual salary and bonus for the highest paid directors grew from ?201,000 to ?416,073 in 2001, an increase of 107 per cent. Average employee pay in the same companies rose from ?19,272 to ?25,223, just 31 per cent. Executives keep paying themselves more even when their companies are in crisis. The stockmarket crash pushed the value of the FTSE 100 down by 30 per cent between 2001 and 2002. Researchers at Income Data Services found that chief executive officers at FTSE 100 companies none the less saw their salaries rise by 9.7 per cent. Their average earnings passed the ?1.5m mark this year.

They are increasing their riches not because they deserve to be paid more but because they can get away with taking more"

http://www.observer.co.uk/comment/story/0,6903,841727,00.html



--------------------
Don't worry, B. Caapi


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Anonymous

Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1068956 - 11/20/02 08:05 AM (19 years, 11 days ago)

Extremely well said.

Two quotes come to mind:

"If a man is a conservative when he is 18 he has no heart, if he is not one when he is 40 he has no mind."

Winston Churchill

"That which a man had rather were true he more readily believes."

Thomas Bacon


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OfflinePhluck
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Registered: 04/11/99
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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1069457 - 11/20/02 01:00 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

Conservatism could be summed up as the belief that one's wealth and success can be attributed entirely to the greatness of their character, and not to a random series of chance events.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
Stranger
Registered: 06/15/02
Posts: 15,608
Re: Liberalism [Re: carbonhoots]
    #1069487 - 11/20/02 01:10 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

They espouse all of the standard centerpiece liberal beliefs (equal treatment of all people no matter what their personal beliefs, economic standing, etc.. may be)They respect freedom and demand that it be recognized

Even conservatives would say they believe in equal treatment of all, and the recognition of freedom. Only an SOB wouldn't believe in these things.

True. These are beliefs that are commonly held by most people, no matter if they are liberals or conservatives. Because slight liberals hover towards the center, a lot of the things they believe in are very similar to what centrists or slight conservative believe in.


The oppresion dialectic is an intresting idea, but what of it? I don't think that just because someone can recognize clear oppresion of a slavemaster variety, they examine everything in life that way, and are on a hopeless mission to eliminate all losers, (and in their blind passions but by necessity, kill the games or something)

And the extreme liberals sounds more like a mixture of maturity and passion than a seperate ideology...anyways, this speech hits me like it's an attempt to frame the situation in a context quite out of reality. The nice tone, the patronizing opening of the discription of liberals...all in an attempt to dismiss the notion of slavery/economic unfairness as some kind of psychotic condition of 'dialectic oppresion'

Could you imagine?
Man to wife...
"Do you know they pay 50 cents an hour in the Maquiladoras? And the people drink polluted water
and live in filth? All the while Walmart and whoever else is profiting billions!"
Wife to man...
"Oh dear, calm down, you know you suffer from Dialectic Oppresive/conpulsive disorder"

I think liberals, as you call them, can see the bigger picture and recognize that we don't have to wait for the market to do everthing. Cuz it won't anyways. There's nothing wrong with applying conscious thought to building a society.


There certainly is oppression in the world. Not everybody who recognizes oppression in the world will haphazardly use the "oppression dialectic" to explain every situation. But, in my experience, liberals are more likely to do this(and I should add, oftentimes blindly) than anybody else.

We of course must strive to make things as tolerable and as much to our liking as is possible. But, it is pointless to ignore reality and attempt to completely "fix the world". It is like trying to leap up to the top of a mountain in one jump. But, people attempt it again and again. This world will never be perfect. How can perfection arise from, or be expressed by, such an imperfect creature as Man?

My contention is that Man is not capable of making a perfect world. There has
never been an idea that originated from Man that was able to lift the human race completely out of it's depravity, and there never will be. That is why liberalism is oftentimes an exercise in futility.

In a utopian society where there is no hunger, everyone recieves a basic level
of material sustenance (even those that are not physically or mentally capable of producing anything), and there is no greed or vice, people would need to put forth a remarkable effort and sacrifice personal interest. This will never happen. Human beings are too enslaved by their whims. People will always exhibit every possible emotion and motive, from the most caring empathy to the most despicable selfishness. It has happened since the beginning of time and will happen until the end of time. No amount of "enlightenment" will ever change the fickleness and unpredictability of Man's behavior.

I will not be responsible for the entire human race. I am only responsible for myself. And, whereever I am in life, I either put myself there or I let myself remain there.


RandalFlagg


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Registered: 06/15/02
Posts: 15,608
Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1069499 - 11/20/02 01:13 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

The trouble is the so-called "winners" prefer to live in a communist paradise themselves.

When I gave my critique on liberals, I was not just focusing on their view of economics. I was trying to put down into words their basic belief system that applies to all topics (the environment, race relations, etc..). But, if you wish to talk about economics, I will be glad to do so.

First, I will give my personal opinion on economics. A pure free market system would allow people to do anything in the pursuit of profits. They could dump toxic waste in the ocean, or pay their employees 20 cents an hour. Obviously, a pure free market system would result in the quick polarization of wealth and destruction of the environment. I believe in a free market system with regulations, that is controlled by a democratic government, so the general population can change things as they see fit. Monopolies are outlawed, pollution is
controlled, etc.. So the bad things about capitalism can be diminished or avoided altogether.

The "winners", i.e. people who are economically well off, have the resources at their disposal because of their own effort, or the effort of their ancestors, and are entitled to enjoy it in any way that they wish.

The "downtrodden", i.e. the people with limited financial resources, should have access to good educational opportunities so that, if they wish to, they can pursue economic success.

t's only the poor who must follow the dictates of the "free market".

The rich themselves prefer communism - massive government intervention to close off markets and corporate welfare - rich corporations living off the largesse of the poor taxpayer, awarding themselves massive pay rises.
They may talk a lot of shit about the "end" of communism but if you are in a rich corporation cmmunism is very much alive and well. We now need to let the poor access this corporate communist paradise.

"All of this might be tolerable if meritocracy promoted genuine talent. Unfortunately for believers in free-market orthodoxy, no one has been able to discover a connection between executive pay and a company's performance. Between 1994 and 2001, the TUC found that the median annual salary and bonus for the highest paid directors grew from ?201,000 to ?416,073 in 2001, an increase of 107 per cent. Average employee pay in the same companies rose from ?19,272 to
?25,223, just 31 per cent. Executives keep paying themselves more even when their companies are in crisis. The stockmarket crash pushed the value of the FTSE 100 down by 30 per cent between 2001 and 2002. Researchers at Income Data Services found that chief executive officers at FTSE 100 companies none the less saw their salaries rise by 9.7 per cent. Their average earnings passed the ?1.5m mark this year.

They are increasing their riches not because they deserve to be paid more but because they can get away with taking more"


The poor are just as greedy as the rich.

Man's main weaknesses are selfishness and self-interest. The only thing
that can consistently fuel a large amount of the population's actions is profit. Religious and ideological beliefs will motivate some people. But, greed is the only sure thing that can be used in order to convince the mass majority of people to accomplish something. In order for someone to want to do something, they need to get a reward. There is no point in fighting this trait. We are human beings, we are greedy, and there is not much we can do about it. If we must live with this trait then we must try to use it to our advantage. That is why I believe in an economic system where people are allowed to pursue whatever they wish.

RandalFlagg


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Anonymous

Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1069883 - 11/20/02 02:31 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

So you are saying that the rich are lucky?

They possess no superior talents?  No unique gifts?  Nothing other than a 'random series of chance events' allowed them to become wealthy?

So then, by your logic again, the only difference between the garage band I was in in the 60's and The Beatles was luck.

Kewl!  I am glad to know that.  Now I am sure that our lack of talent had nothing to do with it.  What a relief it is.

Thanks! :smile:


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InvisibleXlea321
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Registered: 02/26/01
Posts: 9,134
Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1070226 - 11/20/02 03:51 PM (19 years, 11 days ago)

But, greed is the only sure thing that can be used in order to convince the mass majority of people to accomplish something. In order for someone to want to do something, they need to get a reward. There is no point in fighting this trait. We are human beings, we are greedy, and there is not much we can do about it.

Nah, i don't buy it and history really doesn't bear it out. For the vast majority of human existence we lived in bands of around 30-100 who shared everything equally. There were no Bill Gates and beggars in those groups. Our natural trait is to share and help each other. It was only with the introduction of agriculture when people could hoard food that this started changing. And of course capitalism elevated greed and selfishness beyond all other human traits because it suits the purpose of the minority at the top.

Perhaps the reason the world is so fucked up now is that traits which are so contrary to human nature are pushed as being the ones to worship. i don't think being greedy and selfish is natural human nature at all - try giving and being generous one day and check out how wonderful you feel. You don't get that feeling from kicking a begger when he's down - no matter how many free-marketeers tell you they deserve it.


--------------------
Don't worry, B. Caapi


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Offlineshogun221
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Registered: 09/27/02
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1072107 - 11/21/02 01:08 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

"We continue to recognize the greater ability of some to earn more than others. But we do assert that the ambition of the individual to obtain for him a proper security is an ambition to be preferred to the appetite for great wealth and great power."


--------------------
"A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. ~FDR"


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1072239 - 11/21/02 01:52 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

"They possess no superior talents? No unique gifts? Nothing other than a 'random series of chance events' allowed them to become wealthy?"

Pretty much. Some of them are talented, some aren't. There are many hard working intelligent people who never manage to make any of their dreams become reality.

"So then, by your logic again, the only difference between the garage band I was in in the 60's and The Beatles was luck."

No, that's stupid. That's not even remotely following my logic. I didn't say everyone is equally talented. The difference between your band and the Beatles is luck and (probably) talent as well. The difference between your band and say, Creed is merely luck.

There are many, many, many amazing musicians who never had any commercial success whatsoever. There are many more un-talented shills who have had enormous commercial success.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


Edited by Phluck (11/21/02 01:54 AM)


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OfflineEllis Dee
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1072733 - 11/21/02 05:31 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

Frankly, the main problem I have with liberals is that they want to take away my freedom and most of all they want to take away the freedom of the people they claim to want to help. As far as the economic issues go I'm mainly conservative, but somewhat liberal, For example I'm in favor of liberal welfare to work programs and in favor of giving children free health care and otherwise in favor of most of the current economic saftey nets. But, the economics are a secondary issue to me and don't affect the way I vote, which is freedom first.


--------------------
"If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do."-King Solomon

And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,


Edited by Ellis Dee (11/21/02 05:34 AM)


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1072798 - 11/21/02 06:08 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

Alex123 writes:

Nah, i don't buy it and history really doesn't bear it out. For the vast majority of human existence we lived in bands of around 30-100 who shared everything equally.

That is pure speculation. When one speaks of "history", one properly may speak only of RECORDED history. It has not been definitively established by anthropology that the "vast majority" of human existence before the dawn of recorded history was spent in groups of 30 to 100 people, although it seems logical to PRESUME that a hunter-gatherer society could exist with a base that small.

Even if we concede that the majority of hunter-gatherers before the dawn of recorded history DID live in groups of that size, there is no evidence to show that they shared everything equally.

Our natural trait is to share and help each other.

If this is true (and in my opinion it is), why is it necessary for this sharing and helping to be mandated by law and enforced through violence?

And of course capitalism elevated greed and selfishness beyond all other human traits because it suits the purpose of the minority at the top.

Capitalism "elevates" nothing. Capitalism leaves one free to do as one pleases. If you want to work eighty hour weeks and hoard every cent you make, fine. If you want to work just barely enough to get by, fine. If you want to work forty hour weeks and give half your earnings to charities, fine.

Perhaps the reason the world is so fucked up now is that traits which are so contrary to human nature are pushed as being the ones to worship.

Which traits are those? Who is "pushing" them? In which countries are these traits being "pushed"?

i don't think being greedy and selfish is natural human nature at all

History says otherwise. History aside, you have obviously never dealt with pre-schoolage children, have you? There is nothing more self-centered, greedy, and selfish on this planet than a human infant before it has been civilized.

You don't get that feeling from kicking a begger when he's down - no matter how many free-marketeers tell you they deserve it.

Free marketeers don't kick beggars. Free marketeers create jobs. Beggars have been known to take jobs.

pinky


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1072816 - 11/21/02 06:19 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

Phluck writes:

There are many hard working intelligent people who never manage to make any of their dreams become reality.

And many who do. There are very few lazy dim-witted people who manage to BECOME wealthy, however. There are some who fit that description who INHERITED their wealth, but those people are in the minority.

Some people DO become wealthy by good luck, just as some people DO go bankrupt by bad luck. But if you study the ever-growing demographic sector defined as "millionaires" in the United States, for example, the most common unifying attributes among them is the willingness to work long hours, the willingness to take risks, and the intelligence to make mostly correct decisions and few incorrect decisions in a business context.

Does this mean that EVERY intelligent, hardworking risk-taker will become a millionaire? Nope. But it does mean that few if any dim, lazy folk who hide their cash under their mattresses are likely to become millionaires.

pinky


--------------------


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Liberalism [Re: carbonhoots]
    #1072879 - 11/21/02 06:45 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

carbonhoots writes:

There's nothing wrong with applying conscious thought to building a society, rather than wait for the market mechanism of a larger and larger private profit to happen. In some cases, it would never happen.

Thinking is good. Conscious thought is even better. Force is bad. Force initiated by an entity (government) whose sole moral justification is to protect its constituents from the initiation of force is not just bad, it's the ultimate example of a contradiction.

The problem with the Leftist approach is that it accepts unquestioningly the premise that it is morally correct to FORCE people to do stuff. Virtually all Leftists explicitly state that not only is it morally correct, it is morally ESSENTIAL to force people to do stuff. To a Leftist, leaving people free to peacefully pursue their own lives is IMMORAL, because while they are peacefully pursuing their own lives, people they have never met are dying of hunger or disease or being tortured in Tibet or whatever.

We could wait till the cows came home and the market wouldn't have delivered it. The rich countries of the world could EASILY come up with the money, tomorow, and would if not for the greed of the ruling classes. How far would that go to diminish the threat of terrorism, clean water for everyone...a gift from first world to third.

What "market" are you talking about? Why is it necessary for the rich countries to give the poor folks jugs of Clorox? It has been known for decades that putting five drops of simple laundry bleach in a gallon of water renders it safe for human consumption, unless it is grossly contaminated with radioactive sludge or PCBs or something. Laundry bleach is widely available and dirt cheap, even in developing countries. For the first six years I lived in the Dominican Republic (when I got all my water from a well) I treated every single gallon of water I used for drinking and cooking this way. So did all my neighbours. Cheap, foolproof, quick, easy. Even the poorest countries in the world (such as Haiti, where this method is used universally) can provide their own bleach.

pinky



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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1073327 - 11/21/02 11:53 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

I didn't say everyone is equally talented. The difference between your band and the Beatles is luck and (probably) talent as well. The difference between your band and say, Creed is merely luck.

Ha ha! I hate Creed too. I have fantasies about putting the lead singer on a prime time reality show where he is tortured mercilessly.

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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1073339 - 11/21/02 11:59 AM (19 years, 10 days ago)

The problem with the Leftist approach is that it accepts unquestioningly the premise that it is morally correct to FORCE people to do stuff. Virtually all Leftists explicitly state that not only is it morally correct, it is morally ESSENTIAL to force people to do stuff. To a Leftist, leaving people free to peacefully pursue their own lives is IMMORAL, because while they are peacefully pursuing their own lives, people they have never met are dying of hunger or disease or being tortured in Tibet or whatever.

A liberals view on society is one that seems to not respect an individual's right and
responsibility to determine his own fate and standing in life. It is a view that individuals are not capable of making a perfect world if left to their own devices. Man therefore must have beliefs that "guide" Him along toward a better existence. The glaring contradiction of this attitude is that it simultaneously exhibits a love of, and condescending distrust of, humanity.

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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1073344 - 11/21/02 12:02 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

If this is true (and in my opinion it is), why is it necessary for this sharing and helping to be mandated by law and enforced through violence?

I think you're confusing human nature with the current state of society. If you'd been living in Nazi germany in 1938 you would have assumed human nature was dressing up in black shirts and kicking jews. You would have been equally wrong then.

Capitalism leaves one free to do as one pleases

As Bill Hicks said "You are free to do as we tell you".

History says otherwise

History says for the vast majority of human existence we lived in small communities based around sharing and caring for each other. Don't confuse "history" with "the last hundred years". No-one knows what society will be like in 5000 years time.

Free marketeers create jobs.

Tell that to the people of Flint, Michigan.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1073348 - 11/21/02 12:05 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

A liberals view on society is one that seems to not respect an individual's right

Strange, I've always thought the exact opposite. What aspect of individuality are you talking about? Would the far right be more willing to let us use drugs than liberals?


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1073380 - 11/21/02 12:18 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

A liberals view on society is one that seems to not respect an individual's right

Strange, I've always thought the exact opposite. What aspect of individuality are you talking about? Would the far right be more willing to let us use drugs than liberals?

It's weird. The Left and liberals are always talking about freedom and how people should be free to say whatever they want, do whatever they want, be liberated, etc.. But, when it comes to viewpoints that differ from their own, they tend to be just as intolerant as conservatives.

I guess my point is that when people have ideological or religious beliefs, they tend to view the world with a tinged bias.

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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1073475 - 11/21/02 12:59 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

Alex123 writes:

I think you're confusing human nature with the current state of society. If you'd been living in Nazi germany in 1938 you would have assumed human nature was dressing up in black shirts and kicking jews. You would have been equally wrong then.

You originally wrote: "Our natural trait is to share and help each other". I agreed with you, then asked WHY, if this is our natural tendency, is it necessary to FORCE people to share and help each other? What is the connection with Nazi thugs?

As Bill Hicks said "You are free to do as we tell you".

What has that got to do with Capitalism?

History says for the vast majority of human existence we lived in small communities based around sharing and caring for each other.

You don't know that to be true. NO ONE knows that to be true.

Don't confuse "history" with "the last hundred years".

Don't confuse history (by definition that period of time for which there are records, either verbal or pictorial) with "pre-history", for which there are no records but plenty of competing plausible and semi-plausible speculations.

No-one knows what society will be like in 5000 years time.

No one knows what society was like in North America five thousand years ago.

Tell that to the people of Flint, Michigan.

What does that non sequitur mean? Are you saying that not only must a business create a job, but it must maintain that job in the same location for the rest of time?

pinky


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1073497 - 11/21/02 01:05 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

In reply to:

A liberals view on society is one that seems to not respect an individual's right

Strange, I've always thought the exact opposite. What aspect of individuality are you talking about? Would the far right be more willing to let us use drugs than liberals?



Socialists oppose private ownership of lots of property and business for starters. Personally, you want to take away my freedom to bear arms. All you liberals really want to do is take away personal freedom and personal responsibility.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1073531 - 11/21/02 01:20 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

It's weird. The Left and liberals are always talking about freedom and how people should be free to say whatever they want, do whatever they want, be liberated, etc.. But, when it comes to viewpoints that differ from their own, they tend to be just as intolerant as conservatives.

The Lefties are only in favor of individual freedom when it comes to the FRINGE issues, such as what drug you put in your body or what body part you insert into another's bodily receptacle or whether you can burn a flag or call the president a Nazi. They allow you to exercise your rights in these areas because they realize that in terms of power, these areas are meaningless.

However, when it comes to the CORE issues of human existence, such as whose effort enables which individual to continue existing, they are unanimous in their conviction that individual freedom no longer applies; only The Collective has the wisdom to determine how one may make a living, and The Collective has a moral obligation to force individuals to do what The Collective has determined to be "The Right Thing".

This is why, when it comes to raw powerlust, Leftists are more savvy and far more dangerous than Rightists. The Right expends all its time and effort battling irrelevancies such as whether or not two guys living together should be able to adopt a child or whether eaters of mushrooms should be jailed for a year or for five years or whether it makes a difference if schoolkids say the pledge of allegiance -- while the Lefties go straight to the heart of the matter and establish a stranglehold on that which allows humans to exist -- human effort.

pinky


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1073649 - 11/21/02 02:03 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

I agreed with you, then asked WHY, if this is our natural tendency, is it necessary to FORCE people to share and help each other?

What force do you mean? Does someone have to force you to give you son a candy bar? If a guy collapsed in front of you would you need to be "forced" to help him? What are you talking about?

with "pre-history", for which there are no records but plenty of competing plausible and semi-plausible speculations.

Clearly some have far more evidence than others.

Are you saying that not only must a business create a job

Governments can create jobs too. And create stable communities together with those jobs. Creating jobs isn't some magical thing the free-marketeers made up you know.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1073658 - 11/21/02 02:06 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

The Right expends all its time and effort battling irrelevancies such as whether or not two guys living together

I think they're spending a little more time planning how to blow the fuck out of little brown people and make sky-high profits from someone else's land and oil at the moment.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1073761 - 11/21/02 02:47 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

"The most common unifying attributes among them is the willingness to work long hours, the willingness to take risks, and the intelligence to make mostly correct decisions and few incorrect decisions in a business context."

Some more attributes might be a lack of compassion, shiftiness, and lack of empathy. It's hard to turn a profit if you care about your workers.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1073772 - 11/21/02 02:51 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

In western society, success is equated with personal gain, as opposed to how much you have helped others.


--------------------
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1073819 - 11/21/02 03:04 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

Some more attributes might be a lack of compassion, shiftiness, and lack of empathy. It's hard to turn a profit if you care about your workers.

It is not necessary to lack compassion and empathy in order to become wealthy, nor is it necessary to be "shifty", whatever that means.

Phluck, your posts display a strange dichotomy. In the majority of your posts you demonstrate your ability to think logically and reject dogma. In others, like this one, you exhibit a textbook ideological knee-jerk response: it is impossible to be successful without screwing someone over. I am curious as to why sometimes you just seem to lose your objectivity completely.

Surely you are aware that most well-off individuals (the majority of American millionaires, as an example) become wealthy through legal, ethical means, never harming ANYONE along the way.

It's hard to turn a profit if you care about your workers.

That is just nonsense. MacLean's magazine just ran an article on Canada's Top 100 Companies to work for. Dig up a copy and read it. All of those businesses are profitable, some of them exceptionally so.

pinky


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1074376 - 11/21/02 05:36 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

Surely you are aware that most well-off individuals (the majority of American millionaires, as an example) become wealthy through legal, ethical means, never harming ANYONE along the way.

Care to name one of these wonderful caring corporations? Is the boss of Nike a caring sharing kind of guy? (perhaps when he isn't making 10 year olds work 36 hour shifts for 50 cents a day perhaps?)

That is just nonsense.

Don't be ridiculous. You don't see Nike desperate to improve the conditions of the kids they're using as slave labour. It would cut down profits.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1074628 - 11/21/02 07:27 PM (19 years, 10 days ago)

"It is impossible to be successful without screwing someone over."

Hey, I never said that. Being ruthless will certainly help you make money. Someone who can deceive and cheat another person without feeling remorse will most certainly have more success as a businessman. In my experience, the best salesmen are smooth, quick talkers.

Advertising, for instance, a staple of successful business, and inherantly deceptive in nature.

Sure, you don't HAVE to be sleazy in order to succeed, but it's certainly not going to hold you back.

"Surely you are aware that most well-off individuals (the majority of American millionaires, as an example) become wealthy through legal, ethical means, never harming ANYONE along the way."

Legal, probably (although take a look at say, WorldCom, Enron, etc...), ethical? Maybe. You can't possibly tell me that you know their entire history.

"MacLean's magazine just ran an article on Canada's Top 100 Companies to work for."

Sure, there are lots of companies that are good to work for and turn a profit. When you need well educated and experienced workers, you treat them well, they're harder to come by. When you need someone to work in a factory, restaurant, or wherever, they're expendable. You can treat them like shit, pay them minimum wage, and it doesn't really matter because they easy to find.


--------------------
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1075791 - 11/22/02 03:59 AM (19 years, 9 days ago)

Anarchy is the answer.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: MsPacMan]
    #1089329 - 11/27/02 01:11 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

Ah...Anarchy. The extreme Left's unattainable utopian dream.

I certainly am not trying to attack or hurt anybody's feelings with the following post. But, it just gushed out of me like a river and I don't think it would be appropriate to tone it down.

Extreme liberals tend to fall into one of two categories. The first contains people who are woefully misinformed and who engage in a slogan-filled and jingoistic exercise of their beliefs. The second contains people who are usually educated beyond their intelligence. They are oftentimes misguided sophists who engage in esoteric and pedantic intellectual masturbation when they immerse themselves in their ideas and theories.

The more extreme a liberal gets, the more pronounced their simultaneous acerbic pessimism and hopeless idealism is. They distrust any institution that they deem as having power and influence, whether it be a government, organized religion, a corporation, or anything else. They are almost always viciously disdainful of religious ideas of any type. They view them as backward fairy tales that keep the masses brainwashed and confined to a certain way of thinking, which serves the people who are in power. Yet many of the most extreme liberals seem to have
obsessive utopian hopes for mankind. They think that if only the institutions, attitudes, and policies that they deem are self-serving, exploitative, and ignorant would melt away, everyone would magically become happy and free. As if people will live in peace and harmony with no authority in place to maintain some amount of guaranteed social safety and order(a statement full of sarcasm).


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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1089375 - 11/27/02 01:42 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

As if people will live in peace and harmony with no authority in place to maintain some amount of guaranteed social safety and order(a statement full of sarcasm).

Well people managed it for 99.9% of human history. For the vast majority of history people lived in bands of no more than 30 in complete anarchist peace, sharing everything equally. Anarchism is clearly the natural state of human existence. It was only since the rise of agriculture when people were able to start hoarding food - which required the creation of armies and authority to keep the minority rich that anarchism faded away. Perhaps this is why the world gets more and more violent and miserable every century - we need to get back to the natural human state of anarchism.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1089426 - 11/27/02 02:06 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"Ah...Anarchy. The extreme Left's unattainable utopian dream."

Anarchy would be pretty fucking right wing. Sort of the libertarian unattainable utopian dream. Come to think of it, libertarians right now are kind of like what communists were like 100 years ago. A new political movement with a naive new set of ideas that won't work when put into practice. Maybe the militia redneck NRA goofs will revolt, shatter the structure of the society, and eventually reduce the US to what Russia is today.

There is so much dogma attached to what political side you fit on. You can't simply pick and choose your stance on different issues, you've got to choose one side and stick with it.

Leftists sit there, completely ignorant of their hypocrisy, and accuse conservatives of being a bunch of dogmatic buffoons. Then the right-wingers are right there doing exactly the same thing.

The stupidest thing, is when these idiots get into an argument, they use the fact that a certain stance is part of the opposing side's dogma as an argument against it.

"That's libbie-communist pinko bullshit!"
or
"That's jesus-lovin' Nazi bullshit!

Always got to toss in a reference to an oppressive regime associated with their particular belief system too, that always shatters their argument.

"Make abortion illegal?! You NAZI! What are you going to do next, start rounding up the jews?"

If you can't come up with a actual argument against a certain issue, then why do you even have an opinion?

I know that I fit, for the most part, into the leftist school of thought. I'm also aware that I'm guilty of the dogmatic bullshit sometimes as well. It's fucking bullshit, and I'm trying to stop.

People need to stop making choices based on what their supposed to believe if they want to be loyal to their political party or whatever, and start using logic and common sense.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1089435 - 11/27/02 02:12 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"For the vast majority of history people lived in bands of no more than 30 in complete anarchist peace, sharing everything equally."

Ah, the smell of fresh bullshit. All it took for the clubbing and rock throwing to begin, was for one of these clans to run into another one. It probably didn't even take that, undoubtably fights broke out between clan members every now and then. As for having an average lifespan of 15-20 years, well I've gotta tell you, that would suck dick.

We may have lived in anarchy for 99.9% of our history, that doesn't mean it was pleasant.


--------------------
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1089467 - 11/27/02 02:19 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"Perhaps this is why the world gets more and more violent and miserable every century - we need to get back to the natural human state of anarchism. "

The world is getting more violent and miserable with each century? What kind of fucking logic is that based on? Do you know anything at all about ancient history?

Do you think the Nazis invented genocide? I mean, sure, they killed a whole lot of jews, they were really good at that, but they just weren't that innovative.

The only difference now is that these things happen on a large scale. They don't happen on a large scale because everything is worse nowadays, it's because there's more people.


--------------------
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1090598 - 11/27/02 11:20 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"Ah...Anarchy. The extreme Left's unattainable utopian dream."


Anarchy would be pretty fucking right wing. Sort of the libertarian unattainable utopian dream. Come to think of it, libertarians right now are kind of like what communists were like 100 years ago. A new political movement with a naive new set of ideas that won't work when put into practice. Maybe the militia redneck NRA goofs will revolt, shatter the structure of the society, and eventually reduce the US to what Russia is today.


Anarchist dreams are prevalent in the extreme Left wing and in the libertarian side (which could be categorized as a right-wingish political stance) of things.


There is so much dogma attached to what political side you fit on. You can't simply pick and choose your stance on different issues, you've got to choose one side and stick with it.


There is dogma in every system of beliefs. That is why I reject them all. I try to objectively examine individual topics with my own interpretation that is based on my own judgement and wisdom.


Leftists sit there, completely ignorant of their hypocrisy, and accuse conservatives of being a bunch of dogmatic buffoons. Then the right-wingers are right there doing exactly the same thing.

The stupidest thing, is when these idiots get into an argument, they use the fact that a certain stance is part of the opposing side's dogma as an argument against it.

"That's libbie-communist pinko bullshit!"
or
"That's jesus-lovin' Nazi bullshit!

Always got to toss in a reference to an oppressive regime associated with their particular belief system too, that always shatters their argument.

"Make abortion illegal?! You NAZI! What are you going to do next, start rounding up the jews?"



Right-wingers can be (and oftentimes are) worse than left-wingers in the dogma department. Maybe I should write a quick essay detailing their weaknesses.

RandalFlagg




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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1090668 - 11/27/02 11:55 AM (19 years, 4 days ago)

It probably didn't even take that, undoubtably fights broke out between clan members every now and then.

Sorry man but that's just total horseshit. The average human grouping had around 100,000 square miles each. They had no hoarding of food and absolutely no reason to fight. All the evidence points to any encounters between groups being based on sharing and helping.

Don't believe everything you see on 2001 a space oddysey. Read up a bit on early human history.

The world is getting more violent and miserable with each century? What kind of fucking logic is that based on? Do you know anything at all about ancient history?

What the fuck are you talking about? The twentieth century was the most violent in human history. There's no question about that. What do you call ancient history? 5000 years ago? The human race is a lot older than that. For the vast majority of our existence we lived hunter gatherer lifestyles which made warfare redundant.


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Edited by Alex123 (11/27/02 12:02 PM)


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1090738 - 11/27/02 12:29 PM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"All the evidence points to any encounters between groups being based on sharing and helping."

What evidence? The books they wrote? The movies they made? Have you ever observed wild animals? They quarrel and fight over territory, over mating rights, or just for food. Humans are no different, and just assuming that we all worked together seems pretty illogical as it goes against every aspect of human nature. Xenophobia is an instinct, we always fear and distrust strangers, and I'm sure it was no different in ancient times. Native americans lived this lifestyle, and they had constant wars and feuds between tribes.

I don't see any evidence at all that you're not talking out your ass.

"Don't believe everything you see on 2001 a space oddysey."

Don't believe everything you read in "Dr. Flakey's Guide to Mystical Anthropology". I've done a good deal of research on pre-history, and there's no evidence at all that shows everyone lived in wonderful buy-the-world-a-coke harmony. None. If there is, show it to me.

"The twentieth century was the most violent in human history. There's no question about that."

Sure there is, there's lots of reason to question that. You have absolutely nothing to back that up with. Like I said, the reason that the violence happens on a larger scale, is because there's more people. Of course you don't bother to find any evidence to refute that, because it doesn't fit into your little theory about how everything is getting so miserable.

I wish I could find the article I read about it, but one thing that psychologists have documented is the belief that the vast majority of people seem to take on as they age, that the quality of life is worsening. They seem to take on this belief, even if things are getting better. It's closely related to nostalgia.


--------------------
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1091021 - 11/27/02 02:32 PM (19 years, 4 days ago)

as it goes against every aspect of human nature.

Do a quick experiment for me to prove human nature. Find someone you know who is having a hard time and help them out. Your grandma, a kid with brain damage, whoever. Take note of how it makes you feel. Then go and find a handicapped kid and kick his head in and steal from him. Do the same to an old lady. Then come back and tell us which made you feel better.

My guess is you'd felt better helping someone. Most people would. That's human nature. Where do you get this idea that everyone wants to hurt someone from? That's certainly not me and it ain't the people I know.

Xenophobia is an instinct, we always fear and distrust strangers,

Nope. This was a tremendous problem to the landowners during the early days of slavery. Far from hating and fearing the black slaves, if any blacks escaped the poor whites would care for them and protect them from the landowners. It took decades of tremendous effort passing laws, threats and terrible retribution to train the poor whites to be racist. Never let anyone tell you "racism" is natural. We naturally help strangers. That's human nature.

Like I said, the reason that the violence happens on a larger scale, is because there's more people.

Nah that's complete bullshit. There wasn't that much difference between the number of people alive in the 1800's and the 1900's. Certainly not enough to explain the enormous explosion in wars, cruelty, genocides etc. It's simple fact. No historian would even question it.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1091156 - 11/27/02 03:27 PM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"My guess is you'd felt better helping someone. Most people would. That's human nature. Where do you get this idea that everyone wants to hurt someone from? That's certainly not me and it ain't the people I know. "

I don't know what world you're living in, but I've noticed that there's a lot of violence, greed, and hatred. I don't know where the hell you think it came from, but it came from somewhere.

Dogs can be nice, friendly creatures. Loving, loyal, and energetic. Take them for a walk, and they might flip out at other dogs that they pass. People react violently and stupidly in a lot of situations. Not everybody does, but the world isn't a black and white, good vs. evil place like you seem to think it is. All people are different. Don't tell me you've never seen a fight break out over insignificant bullshit. Maybe in your well educated idealist bohemian world everyone works together in peace and harmony, but in case you haven't noticed, there are wars, famine, violence, and hatred all over the world, in both the human and animal kingdoms. I don't know why you seem to think that humans are above the mindless squabbling that animals are prone to, but I think it's arrogant nonsense.

There were quite a few huge wars in the nineteenth century. The world wars are really just the results of european imperialism, and the playing out of an arms race between England and Germany. There is no increase in genocide and cruelty, and I haven't tallied a list of every conflict in both centuries, but I'm sure the numbers would be pretty close. The players just happened to be big countries, with better technology.

"There wasn't that much difference between the number of people alive in the 1800's and the 1900's."

You can't just make things up when you're debating something. Did you bother to research that statement at all?

http://ubh.tripod.com/ub/h202/wpop1.htm

Between 1800 and 1950, the population of the world pretty much doubled. It's pretty much doubled again since then.

"Far from hating and fearing the black slaves, if any blacks escaped the poor whites would care for them and protect them from the landowners. It took decades of tremendous effort passing laws, threats and terrible retribution to train the poor whites to be racist. Never let anyone tell you "racism" is natural. We naturally help strangers. That's human nature. "

Helping people can be human nature, but xenophobia and violence are also human nature. People didn't need to be trained to hate blacks. Some hated them, others didn't. Where do you think the initial racism came from? Is it human nature for rich people to be racist, but not for poor people?


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1091508 - 11/27/02 05:49 PM (19 years, 4 days ago)

but in case you haven't noticed, there are wars, famine, violence, and hatred all over the world,

I think you're confusing human nature and capitalist society. Once authority was in place it's a whole other ball game. The people in power need armies and cops to protect them, they don't give a shit about inequality so human behaviour in those systems changes. Nothing to do with human nature.

Between 1800 and 1950, the population of the world pretty much doubled.

Irrelevant. Are you seriously trying to suggest the same proportion of the population were dying in wars in 50,000 BC as they did in the twentieth century? Nonsense.

Is it human nature for rich people to be racist, but not for poor people?

Don't think it has anything to do with human nature. A few people realised they could make big profits abusing slaves. This profit would have dropped sharply if slaves were constantly running away and being protected by the native population. Penalties were introduced to prevent this along with decades of propaganda and fear tactics. Look at the war on drugs. By your logic it must be human nature for people to be terrified of drugs. It isn't. Look at history and you'll find it's exactly the opposite. Authority can create and spread irrational fears.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1091547 - 11/27/02 06:07 PM (19 years, 4 days ago)

"I think you're confusing human nature and capitalist society. Once authority was in place it's a whole other ball game."

Ok, so violence and wars didn't exist before capitalism. Animals don't fight to defend their territory, or over mates. The native tribes never fought with one another, and all lived in perfect harmony. Makes perfect sense.

"Are you seriously trying to suggest the same proportion of the population were dying in wars in 50,000 BC as they did in the twentieth century? Nonsense."

Why is it nonsense? What evidence to you have to back that up? Or is this one of those cases when logic is irrelevant and I should be just _feeling_ the answer?

"By your logic it must be human nature for people to be terrified of drugs."

No, I'm talking about being afraid of strange people. When someone drastically different comes into an isolated group, the initial reaction is fear and distrust. This is a survival mechanism, if trust were automatic, it would be damn easy to dupe anyone into anything.

"Xenophobia has been characteristic of human societies, as well as lions, wolves, hyenas, and other social animals, basically, it's competition for space and resources."
- evolutionary biologist Jared Diamond of the University of California at Los Angeles


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1092766 - 11/28/02 01:45 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

Ok, so violence and wars didn't exist before capitalism.

Yep, that's pretty much the size of it. Before the rise of agriculture and the ability to hoard food there was no reason for war.

The native tribes never fought with one another, and all lived in perfect harmony. Makes perfect sense.

If you arn't hoarding food tell me what reason there is to fight another hunter-gatherer band? You have everything to lose and nothing to gain. Bands of 30 cannot afford to be getting members injured and killed every week. They would rapidly become extinct. Every human band had around 100,000 square miles. Territory wasn't an issue.

No, I'm talking about being afraid of strange people.

Yeah but what are you basing this on? All the experts i've heard speaking on early man explained that the main characteristic to strangers was friendliness and sharing - even to the point of going hungry yourself. It strengthened the group to have other people's knowledge.

You might have racism and xenophobia now but that's got nothing to do with human nature, just like peoples atitudes to drugs now have absolutely nothing to do with human nature.


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InvisibleEvolving
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1092893 - 11/28/02 02:18 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

In reply to:

Before the rise of agriculture and the ability to hoard food there was no reason for war.



You're apparently not aware of our closet relatives, the chimpanzees, and how they have been observed murdering each other.

In reply to:

If you arn't hoarding food tell me what reason there is to fight another hunter-gatherer band?



Territory, taking females, stealing food that others have gathered instead of gathering it yourself.

In reply to:

Bands of 30 cannot afford to be getting members injured and killed every week.



Every week? Why would conflicts be happening on a weekly basis?

In reply to:

Every human band had around 100,000 square miles. Territory wasn't an issue.



How do you know this? This is pure speculation.

In reply to:

All the experts i've heard speaking on early man explained that the main characteristic to strangers was friendliness and sharing - even to the point of going hungry yourself. It strengthened the group to have other people's knowledge.



What 'experts'? How do they come to these conclusions? Did they travell back in time and observe the people?


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To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


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Anonymous

Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1092929 - 11/28/02 02:44 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

Your argument is that Agriculture destroyed HUMAN NATURE!!!

Are you for real? Everything that MAN does is HUMAN NATURE. Humans are complex. Murder is as human as LOVE. BOTH are done out of self interest.

When a man jumps into a freezing river to save another man, I assure you he does so for his own best interest. "What if that was me"!! When someone is a serial killer, they do so out of self-interest. When somone gives money to the poor, the do so out of self interest. When someone robs from the poor they do so out of self interest.

THEY ONLY CONSTANT IS SELF-INTEREST. What makes you feel good is your CHOICE. Apparently not everyone feels good about the same things. Your notion is to FORCE YOUR idea of FEEL GOOD LIVING UPON OTHERS. That is what socialism is!!! You don't get a say in what you do all day long for the rest of your life. If it isn't in the best interest of the whole, it is outlawed. What makes matters worse, is even under your IDEAL SYSTEM, it can't neutralize the fact that people have different notions of what is good for them(individual). This leads to corruption, and hence the SOVIET UNION, CHINA, CUBA. What starts off as a great idea becomes as corrupt as any other idea, except you gave up your INDIVIDUAL FREEDOM for the GOOD of the WHOLE, and you still don't get that UTOPIA.

HUMAN nature is complex. It can't be reduced or controlled. The best you can do is to try and remain free to act on your own self-interest, because in the end, that is what everyone will be doing. It is best to do so under a free system, and not a socialist one.

Don't you want to be able to choose what you work at. Under a pure socialist system, you will be doing what you are best at, not neccessarily what you WANT to be doing. If I am a math whiz, that is what I will have to do, because it is best for the WHOLE of society. What if I would rather be a artist? I would no longer have a choice, because society has decided that I would better serve the whole as a MATH person.

I don't want to be a BORG. I want to be ME. I want to live as free as possible to do what I want to do. The only limitations to that freedom, have been slowly implemented by society one law at a time. Each of those laws can be questioned by every citizen. No law can remain a law if a significant amount of the population, not a majority, organizes itself into a single voice, and uses it within the system. That doesn't mean singing " Give peace a chance" in front of congress, it means LOBBYING your point of view. Using your potential votes, and accumulated funds to make sure your ELECTED officials vote your way. IF all that fails, it is because your VIEWS are not shared by an even STRONGER LOBBY.

Lobbies are simply communal votes and funds. Even your evil corporations are people to. Private citizens, unlike your DREAM WORLD, in which the STATE will own everything, including YOU.


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InvisibleCaptain Jack
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1092944 - 11/28/02 02:54 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

when a conservative refuses to believe that it is impossible for someone to be smart and liberal (or vice versa) i tend to stop paying attention to them.

as much as i like to insult people who disagree with me, refusing to believe that smart people can think in a way that is different than your own is ignorant.
sorry.



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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1093139 - 11/28/02 04:27 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

"My contention is that Man is not capable of making a perfect world. There has
never been an idea that originated from Man that was able to lift the human race completely out of it's depravity, and there never will be. That is why liberalism is oftentimes an exercise in futility."

Wow! can I borrow your time machine dude!


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Captain Jack]
    #1093251 - 11/28/02 05:59 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

Thats the most intelligent thing thats been said in this entire thread.


BTW Teonan, Dont think just because you may act purely out of self interest that the whole of humanity follows suit!


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1093254 - 11/28/02 06:09 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

All this "I want to be me" stuff just sounds like ego attachment to me.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1093368 - 11/28/02 09:46 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

I'm not even going to bother anymore, you might as well be trying to tell me cows can fly. You have absolutely no evidence to back up what you're saying, and you're operating on assumptions that don't come from any sort of logical reasoning.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1093376 - 11/28/02 10:04 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

In reply to:

You have absolutely no evidence to back up what you're saying, and you're operating on assumptions that don't come from any sort of logical reasoning




As a neutral observer i'd say u r about even on that score!


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1093425 - 11/28/02 11:28 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

Your argument is that Agriculture destroyed HUMAN NATURE!!!

Actually I'm saying the complete opposite. After 5000 years of a system based on a perverted system of minority control of the majority, a system based around being selfish and greedy and not considering your fellow man, even after 5000 years of that people by and large still prefer helping each other.

Indeed the capitalist system appears to leave people even more depressed than ever. We all seem to know that looking out for number one, being selfish and greedy doesn't make us happy. That gives you a pretty powerful insight into the reality of human nature.


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1093430 - 11/28/02 11:32 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

you might as well be trying to tell me cows can fly.

I'd gathered that. Your mind is already made up right?

You have absolutely no evidence to back up what you're saying, and you're operating on assumptions that don't come from any sort of logical reasoning.

Apart from pretty much every anthropologist and expert on early human behaviour on earth saying the same thing. Humans lived in bands of around 30 - that's all hunter-gatherer systems can provide for. You start making war and your men are injured and die off rapidly. With fewer hunters, hunter-gatherer bands quickly die out as they have little food stored for emergencies. It's totally logical and the best explanation for why humans to this day still feel better when they help each other than when they kill each other.


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Captain Jack]
    #1093452 - 11/28/02 11:48 AM (19 years, 3 days ago)

when a conservative refuses to believe that it is impossible for someone to be smart and liberal (or vice versa) i tend to stop paying attention to them.

Admittedly, there are some very smart liberals. And by the way, I am not a conservative.


as much as i like to insult people who disagree with me, refusing to believe that smart people can think in a way that is different than your own is ignorant.
sorry.


I never said that all liberal's are stupid. If you read through all of my posts you would see that I was describing three different kinds of liberals(slight, moderate, and extreme). I chastised the slight liberal's for their laziness. I respect the moderate liberal's intelligence, but I disagree with them. And, I have disdain for the extreme liberals because of their extremism. Extreme conservatives are just as bad(fascists, religious and racial supremacists, etc..) as extreme liberals.

I really need to write a "Reasons why I distrust the Right-Wing", so all of you people will not think that I am some conservative wacko who has a beef against liberals.


RandalFlagg


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1093814 - 11/28/02 02:44 PM (19 years, 3 days ago)

"Apart from pretty much every anthropologist and expert on early human behaviour on earth saying the same thing."

They aren't saying that there were no battles. I could ask you to provide me with something to back that up with, but I know you'll just ignore that.


"Humans lived in bands of around 30 - that's all hunter-gatherer systems can provide for."

Yeah, that's true.

"You start making war and your men are injured and die off rapidly."

So far so good...

"With fewer hunters, hunter-gatherer bands quickly die out as they have little food stored for emergencies."

Okay, true as well. Of course this doesn't back up your theory that there wasn't any war. It just shows that the tribes that were smarter and better at war were the ones that survivied.

It's human nature to help one another, but it's also human nature to fight.

Would you care to address the issue of why people fight over girls? Or over various possessions? Or over insults? Did none of these issues exist back then?

Just because killing someone might make you feel bad, it doesn't mean it's not human nature.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
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Re: Liberalism [Re: GazzBut]
    #1093833 - 11/28/02 02:49 PM (19 years, 3 days ago)

"As a neutral observer i'd say u r about even on that score!"

So my theory that people did fight before capitalism existed has no basis?


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1093983 - 11/28/02 03:26 PM (19 years, 3 days ago)

They aren't saying that there were no battles.

What kind of a battle do you get between groups of 30? Even if one group did want to fight, the other side has 100,000 square miles to move on to. Why would they fight "wars" in a situation like this? What benefit to them would war be? They can't steal anything because hunter-gatherers don't store food. So you are risking your hunters getting injured, which means they can't hunt, which means the tribe quickly starves and dies, for absolutely nothing.

Would you care to address the issue of why people fight over girls?

Well, are we discussing wars or aggression? People obviously have the potential for aggression because they are meat-eaters and you can't kill an animal by making nasty comments to it - you have to hit it. Small groups can deal with aggression in a healthy way. In a group of 30 people everyone offers something and is important. It's not like modern day capitalism where the president can order 30,000 americans to go and die in a war and know the next day there'll be another 30,000 strangers to replace them. That's when you get wars, when the minority at the top are completely seperate to the people they command.


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1094333 - 11/28/02 06:22 PM (19 years, 3 days ago)


What kind of a battle do you get between groups of 30? Even if one group did want to fight, the other side has 100,000 square miles to move on to. Why would they fight "wars" in a situation like this? What benefit to them would war be? They can't steal anything because hunter-gatherers don't store food. So you are risking your hunters getting injured, which means they can't hunt, which means the tribe quickly starves and dies, for absolutely nothing.


We don't live in a world of bands of 30 roaming around. We live in a world of billions of people. When few people are around and there are ample spaces and resources, there is no reason to fight. But, when we feel threatened, or when someone has something we want, it is natural to strike out and fight. This is as much of a part of human nature as compassion is.

You seem to be implying that before "civilized" societies and economies came into being, everyone roamed around in a lawless, yet beatiful and idyllic world where everything was perfect. Maybe so, maybe not. I am a tad bit more pessimistic about human history than you. I surmise that life back then was short, brutish, and nasty.



It's not like modern day capitalism where the president can order 30,000 americans to go and die in a war and know the next day there'll be another 30,000 strangers to replace them. That's when you get wars, when the minority at the top are completely seperate to the people they command.


Huh? You seem to be insinuating that any country that has a capitalist economy (a free market economy in other words) is aggressive and imperialistic. Imperialism is not confined to capitalist democratic societies. What about when the Soviet Union infiltrated and absorbed Eastern Europe(and they tried to dominate every other damn country they could get their hands on). Or when Nazi Germany started to attack it's neighbors because it had territorial ambitions? Every type of government, whether it be the most totalitarian dictatorship or the most free democracy, engages in war.

And, there is always that "minority on the top" in every society, even in "utopias" where everyone is supposedly equal(the Party members in the Soviet Union are an example), or in countries that are ruthlessly controlled and "efficient" (Party member and friends in Nazi Germany for example). The difference in America is that we have the right to choose who controls our government, which is a freedom that many people in the past did not have access to and many people in the present still do not have access to.


RandalFlagg


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1094775 - 11/28/02 11:33 PM (19 years, 2 days ago)

"So you are risking your hunters getting injured, which means they can't hunt, which means the tribe quickly starves and dies, for absolutely nothing."

Hey, that's war for ya. Nobody ever said war was a rational, well thought out way of dealing with problems. Everyone knows war is stupid and irrational, and it happens.

"It's not like modern day capitalism where the president can order 30,000 americans to go and die in a war and know the next day there'll be another 30,000 strangers to replace them."

What about ancient Greece when armies weren't so expendable? There were still wars. People fight for hubris, not only for sensible things. Wars and aggression are the same irrational human emotions, just playing out on a larger scale.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1094983 - 11/29/02 01:19 AM (19 years, 2 days ago)

What about ancient Greece when armies weren't so expendable?

We're still talking about a minority at the top having control of the majority and they wern't hunter-gatherers either.

No-ones arguing the last 5000 years have been violent, the big question is whether this means it's "Human nature" or simply the system we live under.


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1095004 - 11/29/02 01:26 AM (19 years, 2 days ago)

And, there is always that "minority on the top" in every society, even in "utopias" where everyone is supposedly equal(the Party members in the Soviet Union are an example),

I wouldn't call the soviet union a utopian society. It had a minority at the top who controlled everything. Clearly that's as far from the genuine idea of anarchism or communism as you can possibly get. Indeed the soviets helped destroy the anarchist communes that had formed in Spain in the early 30's.

Saying the last 100 years proves anything about "Human nature" is clearly nonsense. It proves things about the system we're living under sure, but nothing else.

This is as much of a part of human nature as compassion is

But it clearly isn't. For 99.9% of human history we lived in a way where compassion was elevated far above warfare for the simple reason that compassion helped the group survive.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1095681 - 11/29/02 11:23 AM (19 years, 2 days ago)

This is as much of a part of human nature as compassion is


But it clearly isn't. For 99.9% of human history we lived in a way where compassion was elevated far above warfare for the simple reason that compassion helped the group survive.


We could argue all day about what we think true human nature consists of and what the world was like thousands of years ago. The fact is neither of us knows, so I guess there is actually no point in surmising that we do.


And, there is always that "minority on the top" in every society, even in "utopias" where everyone is supposedly equal(the Party members in the Soviet Union are an example),



I wouldn't call the soviet union a utopian society. It had a minority at the top who controlled everything.


That's the point. It was supposed to be a utopian society. It was intended to be a utopian society. But, it didn't turn out that way. Utopia is not possible, because people are not perfect.

You seem to be one of the people who believe in the perfect ideal of the "peaceful anarchist community". This type of anarchy in today's world is not possible. There are too many people, and too few resources. If there is no order to enforce rules that are in place to protect people's bodies and properties, there are not so compassionate people who will take advantage of the situation. And, because a lot of people are greedy and status seeking, an unabated and uncontrolled capitalism would ensue, which would quickly destroy the environment and polarize wealth.

If you truly want to enact an anarchist paradise, gather together some friends go to some deserted island and try it. I have a feeling it won't work out though.

RandalFlagg



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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1095697 - 11/29/02 11:38 AM (19 years, 2 days ago)

It was supposed to be a utopian society. It was intended to be a utopian society.

Well I think every society was originally intended to be "utopian". Capitalism was supposed to create a utopian society too. The fact is the soviet union was never anywhere close to being communism or anarchism, even Lenin said it needed 50-100 years of dictatorship before they could even think of beginning to implement communism.

This type of anarchy in today's world is not possible.

The original argument wasn't really about that, it was about human nature. Which society is "better" is another argument. You could argue that following capitalism has led man to the greatest crisis in the planets history. We are living through the second largest mass extinction period since the dinosaurs and have little, if any, hope for a long term future. If that's "success" then we clearly need to go back to the drawing board. Mankind is 2 million years old, homo sapiens is around 100,000 years old, we have followed the idea of nations being led by a minority at the top for just the last 5000 years or so. 5000 years out of 2 million is a piss in the ocean timewise. We don't have to follow these methods for the next 100,000 years. Especially if they ensure our extinction.

I suppose we have to ask ourselves whether the risk of trying anarchy outweighs the certain destruction we've got coming carrying on as we are. My guess is it probably is. Not in the short-term maybe, but the fact is we arn't gonna last another million years sticking with the methods we've been following. We'll be lucky to last the next 200 years at this rate.


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1095736 - 11/29/02 12:09 PM (19 years, 2 days ago)

It was supposed to be a utopian society. It was intended to be a utopian society.


Well I think every society was originally intended to be "utopian". Capitalism was supposed to create a utopian society too. The fact is the soviet union was never anywhere close to being communism or anarchism, even Lenin said it needed 50-100 years of dictatorship before they could even think of beginning to implement communism.


I disagree that capitalism was intended to make a utopian society. Capitalism let's people do what they want, instead of telling them what to do. This freedom is nice, but I will admit that when people have freedom, they indulge in their pursuits more gluttonously. That is a flaw of capitalism.

We must strive to do what will make things the most tolerable, but we must realize that perfection is unattainable.


This type of anarchy in today's world is not possible.



The original argument wasn't really about that, it was about human nature. Which society is "better" is another argument. You could argue that following capitalism has led man to the greatest crisis in the planets history. We are living through the second largest mass extinction period since the dinosaurs and have little, if any, hope for a long term future. If that's "success" then we clearly need to go back to the drawing board.

Mankind is 2 million years old, homo sapiens is around 100,000 years old, we have followed the idea of nations being led by a minority at the top for just the last 5000 years or so. 5000 years out of 2 million is a piss in the ocean timewise. We don't have to follow these methods for the next 100,000 years. Especially if they ensure our extinction.


Well, I realize I said earlier that nobody completely understands human nature, so how can I, or anybody else, claim to understand it. But, here's a thing I'll throw out at you. All over the world, it seems to be natural for people to group together(we seem to be a "herd animal"). Even with isolated civilizations that did not have contact with other civilizations, and therefore were not influenced, there came about an order and a structure. Even in the animal world this happens. Wolf packs have a male and a female leader, for example. This may point to the possibility that it is animal nature to group together and to establish an order or a hierarchy.


I suppose we have to ask ourselves whether the risk of trying anarchy outweighs the certain destruction we've got coming carrying on as we are. My guess is it probably is. Not in the short-term maybe, but the fact is we arn't gonna last another million years sticking with the methods we've been following. We'll be lucky to last the next 200 years at this rate.


What do you mean by certain destruction? Do you mean environmental destruction? If so, the only way to eliminate that is to kill off 99% of the human begins on this planet, and force the survivors to live in huts, eat twigs, and never reproduce enough to increase the population. The people of Earth will never willingly submit to this. Every person on this planet causes an environmental impact. Right now you are using a computer that was manufactured with parts that were made in a factory that caused some pollution somewhere. You are using power to run the computer (which is probably coming from a fossil fuel burning power plant). You eat, you shit, and you consume(which all cause pollution and environmental problems). That's the way it is. That is why I support paying people to get sterilized, free abortions, and "suicide shops" where people can willingly come in and get "put down".

Or do you mean destruction that is caused by the clashing of civilizations or nations? That will always happen. People and civilizations clash. To me, this just seems an inevitable part of existence.

RandalFlagg


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1096020 - 11/29/02 02:30 PM (19 years, 2 days ago)

Wolf packs have a male and a female leader, for example

Not sure whether wolf packs are a good relation to human beings but obviously the big difference is the leader is a part of the group. If the group dies, he dies with it. That isn't the situation in human society at the moment. In hunter gatherer groups it's unlikely there was a "leader" - decisions were made within the group. No matter how good your "leader" is in a small band if everyone isn't happy you may as well forget about surviving.

If so, the only way to eliminate that is to kill off 99% of the human begins on this planet, and force the survivors to live in huts, eat twigs, and never reproduce enough to increase the population

I don't think so. I think an enormous effect could be made to save the environment by simply decreasing corporate profit. Shell Oil polluting and destroying vast swathes of Nigeria for example could have been prevented if they'd budgeted for the environment. Could we make computers without destroying the environment? The computer corporations might have to take a cut in profit but it could certainly be done.

I guess it boils down to whether you buy the idea that we need leaders to save us all. That leaders are part of the solution rather than the problem. That handing power over to tiny groups of "leaders" serves the survival of the human race. I'm not so sure.

Taking an obvious example, every "expert" I've ever seen in the mainstream media or TV has assured us for the last 70 years that if we "lost" the "war on drugs" then the violent collapse of society would be immininent. That if pot was legalised the world would rapidly descend into eternal night. Well, we lost the war on drugs and society didn't collapse. Portugal decriminalised pot and everything still seems fine.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1096315 - 11/29/02 05:15 PM (19 years, 2 days ago)


Wolf packs have a male and a female leader, for example


Not sure whether wolf packs are a good relation to human beings but obviously the big difference is the leader is a part of the group. If the group dies, he dies with it. That isn't the situation in human society at the moment. In hunter gatherer groups it's unlikely there was a "leader" - decisions were made within the group. No matter how good your "leader" is in a small band if everyone isn't happy you may as well forget about surviving.


I'm sorry, but there is no way that you can verify that 100% of human beings that lived thousands or even millions of years ago, fit into this theory of egalitarian hunter-gatherer groups. It is conjecture, and there is no way that you can know for a fact that things were like this. And, even if things were like this it doesn't matter anyway, because we no longer live in a world that is sparsely populated, so it is not applicable to modern day life.

If so, the only way to eliminate that is to kill off 99% of the human begins on this planet, and force the survivors to live in huts, eat twigs, and never reproduce enough to increase the population


I don't think so. I think an enormous effect could be made to save the environment by simply decreasing corporate profit. Shell Oil polluting and destroying vast swathes of Nigeria for example could have been prevented if they'd budgeted for the environment. Could we make computers without destroying the environment? The computer corporations might have to take a cut in profit but it could certainly be done.


As the custodians of the Earth, we have an obligation to make our impact as small as is possible on our surrounding environment. But, don't forget that we will have an impact. We will encroach upon animal habitats. We will pollute. We will affect the world, because there are so many people and because we require a lot of resources to stay alive and to remain comfortable.

By demonstrating the greed of these companies you just proved one of my points. The people who are profiting from Shell (executives, shareholders, etc..) want to make money. How do they make large sums of money? By operating in countries with lax labor and environmental laws. Why do they do this? For profit. Why would people want profit, and be willing to cause harm to land and other people to get it? Because people often behave in a greedy fashion. How do you keep order in a world full of greedy people who are willing to do nasty things in order to improve their own lot, at the expense of others? You enact laws that limit the harmful things that people can do. What is the fairest way to enact laws that will dictate what can go on in your land? Have a stable and controlled democracy, where people are allowed to vote for candidates they agree with, and if no there are candidates that represent their ideas, they can run for office themselves. How do you make sure that the laws are enforced? You give a select few the power to enforce the law.


I guess it boils down to whether you buy the idea that we need leaders to save us all. That leaders are part of the solution rather than the problem. That handing power over to tiny groups of "leaders" serves the survival of the human race. I'm not so sure.


It is necessary for power to be confined to a few hands, if it wasn't there would be chaos. Thank Goodness I live in a country where I can pick the people who are attached to those hands.


RandalFlagg



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Anonymous

Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1097462 - 11/30/02 01:50 AM (19 years, 1 day ago)

So you are of the mindset that Murderers, robbers, rapists, and all other criminals are this way because of the system they live under. If we all just shared the resources none of this would happen. Are women assets as well under your system. Do we just share them. I get to fuck the pretty blonde today, you get her tommorow, someone else the next day. Or are people going to not envy their neighbors wife(which could be viewed as a possesion) because no one else gets to diddle her.

No possesions at all right. Can't own land. Can't own anything, it is all communal. I get to fuck you if I want as well, you don't own yourself anymore. you don't own anything.

You actually think this is realistic with the population that exists in the world now. Even going back 6,000 years.

You actually think some people just don't LIKE fucking with other people. The TED BUNDY's of the world are products of the Dominator culture RIGHT!!! They didn't like doing what they do, they just have been born into a system that elevates the INDIVIDUAL above the Society, and they are perversions of that.

Do you take ANY RESPONSIBILITY for your own actions, or do you blame those on the MINORITY up top that dominates and controls the majority at the bottom.



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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1097542 - 11/30/02 02:40 AM (19 years, 1 day ago)

It is necessary for power to be confined to a few hands, if it wasn't there would be chaos.

They told us that if pot were legalised there would be chaos too.

So what do we do? Follow the methods we currently have which appear certain to ensure our extinction? Do you think human beings will last another million years with the current system?


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1097566 - 11/30/02 02:48 AM (19 years, 1 day ago)

Are women assets as well under your system

Actually all the evidence shows that women were far more powerful and influential in these early systems than men. It appears that men worshipped women in those groups.

The decline of women in society is a very recent phenomena. The myth of cavemen dragging women around appears to complete nonsense.


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1098010 - 11/30/02 10:04 AM (19 years, 1 day ago)



It is necessary for power to be confined to a few hands, if it wasn't there would be chaos.


They told us that if pot were legalised there would be chaos too.


Whether a certain substance should be legal or not, is not applicable to the question of whether there needs to be authority. They are two completely different topics with their own problems.


So what do we do? Follow the methods we currently have which appear certain to ensure our extinction? Do you think human beings will last another million years with the current system?


No matter what system human beings live under, bad stuff will happen. I personally don't think the human race will last another million years. We pollute too much. We are too violent. Technology has exponentially increased our capability to cause destruction. Something is probably going to happen that will fuck everything up permanently. I just hope I am not alive when it happens. Even though I don't have much hope for mankind, it would still pain me to see it's demise.


RandalFlagg


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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1098073 - 11/30/02 11:11 AM (19 years, 1 day ago)

Teonan, it is easier to blame others than to get your hands dirty and fix things yourself. The natural state of man before capitalism was one of poverty, of a subsistence existence, yet the ignorant look around them at wealth that so many have worked so hard to create and blame the poverty of others on such wealth. You cannot expect such minds to comprehend the ideas of leverage and personal initiative, these are as foreign to them as flight is to a worm.


--------------------
To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


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Anonymous

Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1098092 - 11/30/02 11:29 AM (19 years, 1 day ago)

That's a pretty good conversation you have going on.

Both sides seem to be cordial and the responses seem well thought out.

I particularly liked this paragraph of your's:

"I'm sorry, but there is no way that you can verify that 100% of human beings that lived thousands or even millions of years ago, fit into this theory of egalitarian hunter-gatherer groups. It is conjecture, and there is no way that you can know for a fact that things were like this. And, even if things were like this it doesn't matter anyway, because we no longer live in a world that is sparsely populated, so it is not applicable to modern day life."

Aside from the fact that it is a nice conversation I always get caught up in the "why argue this with a person who cannot change their mind" syndrome.

I don't talk just to talk and neither do I spend time discussing issues with people that cannot reason.  Yes, of course you can always say that you post because you wish to educate the readers.  If that's so more power to you.  I, on the other hand, simply do not have the time nor the energy to devote to such tasks.

I'm glad you do.

Most of the time when I am having an argument, or dialectic if it ever gets that far, I will at some point deduce that the opponent is incapable of reasoning or relying on some false premise that they are unwilling to let go of.  At that point the conversation between me and them ends.

Seems like your futility muscles are well exercised, imo.

Have fun! :smile: 


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InvisibleRandalFlagg
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Re: Liberalism [Re: ]
    #1098151 - 11/30/02 12:23 PM (19 years, 1 day ago)

I feel all warm and mushy inside now.. :smile:

Five stars to Mr_Mushrooms  Hip Hip hooray! 


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Anonymous

Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1098598 - 11/30/02 04:33 PM (19 years, 1 day ago)

:blush:


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1100397 - 12/01/02 05:43 AM (19 years, 16 hours ago)

Whether a certain substance should be legal or not, is not applicable to the question of whether there needs to be authority.

Authority in the sense of allowing us to use drugs?

I personally don't think the human race will last another million years. We pollute too much. We are too violent.

Nah, mankinds only limit is his own creativity. If we accept that Bush jnr is the apogee of human development then we truly are doomed. Don't think that because the free-marketeers are destroying the world right now they will be doing so in 5000 years.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1100540 - 12/01/02 11:28 AM (19 years, 10 hours ago)


Whether a certain substance should be legal or not, is not applicable to the question of whether there needs to be authority.



Authority in the sense of allowing us to use drugs?


No, that is not what I meant. You were questioning the whole concept of a few deciding certain things and enforcing certain things on the many. You illustrated how drug "experts" have misinformed the public, so I assume you were trying to demonstrate that the "few", even if they are supposedly qualified, don't always make the best decisions. And, by my statement, I meant that that whole analogy was not a good one, because(repeat of my former post) whether a certain substance should be legal or not, is not applicable to the question of whether there needs to be authority(in a society). They are two completely different topics with completely different considerations.


I personally don't think the human race will last another million years. We pollute too much. We are too violent.



Nah, mankinds only limit is his own creativity.


Mankind's only limit is it's creativity? You just seem to be terribly optimistic of this race of ours. Do you seriously think that cruelty, aggression, depravity, and selfishness are going to magically disappear?


If we accept that Bush jnr is the apogee of human development then we truly are doomed.


I don't believe the word "apogee" should be used in the same sentence as "human". It is an undeserved compliment to the human race.


Don't think that because the free-marketeers are destroying the world right now they will be doing so in 5000 years.


Free-marketers are not destroying the world. People are. For example, when the Soviet Union(a communist nation) existed, they were responsible for horrible pollution and exploitation of their resources.

My point is that no matter what system people live under, no matter what they strive for, no matter what they think the world should be like, they will never be able to live up to these unattainable noble intentions, because we are too fickle and self-absorbed.


RandalFlagg


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1102558 - 12/02/02 01:51 AM (18 years, 11 months ago)

whether a certain substance should be legal or not, is not applicable to the question of whether there needs to be authority(in a society).

Of course it is. Taking drugs is human behaviour. If we can give people the right to choose whether or not they can take drugs we can give them the right to choose how they live their lives in other ways.

Free-marketers are not destroying the world. People are.

On the contrary, I've just read a fascinating book about the millions of people all over the world rejecting corporate globalisation and creating their own lives and communities. There is hope, just not from the corporate marketeers. Our only limit is our own imagination. Things can be different.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1103523 - 12/02/02 11:45 AM (18 years, 11 months ago)


whether a certain substance should be legal or not, is not applicable to the question of whether there needs to be authority(in a society).


Of course it is. Taking drugs is human behaviour. If we can give people the right to choose whether or not they can take drugs we can give them the right to choose how they live their lives in other ways.

Admittedly, the whole drug debate is an important one. It needs to be examined and better policies need to be brought into being(in my opinion). But, the question of whether people are allowed to ingest certain chemicals, is nowhere near as important as the question of how we will govern ourselves, interact with our fellow man, and maintain an economy. Only potheads seem to think the drug question is the most pressing thing in society.


Free-marketers are not destroying the world. People are.


On the contrary, I've just read a fascinating book about the millions of people all over the world rejecting corporate globalisation and creating their own lives and communities. There is hope, just not from the corporate marketeers. Our only limit is our own imagination. Things can be different.


I would be willing to bet that this book was hopelessly slanted toward the Left wing, but I digress.

The only way to ensure the complete safety, equality, and tranquility that liberals crave, is to control Mankind mercilessly. I would rather eat dirt and live in my own filth, than to live under a system or a mandatory communal attitude that dictated what I should do, how I should act, and what I should be.

But, that is what is great about America. We may not agree, but you can say what you want to say. You can pursue what you want. You can live your life in a manner which suits you. And, if you don't like the way things are, you can work to change it. Given that you don't like the way things are, or where they are headed, I suggest that you get to work.

RandalFlagg



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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1103546 - 12/02/02 12:01 PM (18 years, 11 months ago)

But, the question of whether people are allowed to ingest certain chemicals, is nowhere near as important as the question of how we will govern ourselves, interact with our fellow man

It's not about whether we are "allowed" to ingest certain chemicals. It's about personal freedoms.

The only way to ensure the complete safety, equality, and tranquility that liberals crave, is to control Mankind mercilessly.

This sounds like a line from Mein Kampf. I must beg to differ.

But, that is what is great about America. We may not agree, but you can say what you want to say.

Try telling that to Bill Hicks after the Letterman fiasco.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1103753 - 12/02/02 01:28 PM (18 years, 11 months ago)

You can say what you want cuz realistically the voice of free-thinking people usually doesn't amount to shit and the government knows that. And if it does gain momentum like during the hippy era.. Simple, just change the laws so they become criminals and throw 'em in jail.

Pot-smokers are technically collaborating with terrorists now, arent they?

I'm not saying we don't have the power to change all this, just trying to put things in perspective.
I see the power the people have is majority vs. minority. We simply have the brute force if we really all want to make a change. Our 'government approved freedoms' have nothing to do with it.
They'd trod all over our freedoms if they thought they could get away with it, but they need our support so they gotta molest our nation's morale with bullshit lies.


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1103754 - 12/02/02 01:28 PM (18 years, 11 months ago)


But, the question of whether people are allowed to ingest certain chemicals, is nowhere near as important as the question of how we will govern ourselves, interact with our fellow man


It's not about whether we are "allowed" to ingest certain chemicals. It's about personal freedoms.


I reiterate: if you don't like how things are, work to change them.

I guess we must agree to disagree. I will however leave you with some advice. I posted the following in a thread about a year ago in the political discussion forum:


I am not accusing you of the following, but I feel that you should be made aware of a phenomenon that I have noticed when dealing with "underground" or "alternative" forms of thinking or ideologies. When I stumbled upon anarchist thought, all of the ideas had such an appeal to me. These were ideas that sounded good on paper and that claimed to have the "answer" for mankind. Imagine how my teenaged ego inflated when I thought of how enlighted I was and how "backward" the masses were.

I viewed the world through an ideological tint, instead of viewing reality as an unbiased observer. In many situations, I failed to see clearly, for my various ideologies were blinding and binding me. Instead of sorting the world out for myself, I, without hesitation absorbed some "enlightened" theories of the geniuses of anarchism, free-thought, and anti-religion(basically, anything Left Wing). Instead of defining myself, these ideas defined who I was. As I matured, I realized that I was nothing more than an unoriginal patchwork quilt of various scraps that I had picked up. Almost as if I had picked my ideas off of a shelf at a store, like I would a box of cereal. I realized that I personally had done little to contribute to who I was. I had merely adopted whatever had happened to be around me and that sounded halfway decent. Don't let ideologies and philosophies blind and control you, as they did to me.


RandalFlagg


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Re: Liberalism [Re: RandalFlagg]
    #1103780 - 12/02/02 01:38 PM (18 years, 11 months ago)

Thats awesome advice, Randall, that i bet alot of people should really take to heart.

The thing I do is always question myself just as much as the ideas around me. Cuz that's what I am, a bunch of ideas, and what good are my ideas if they aren't as much honest unbiased truth as possible?

I've noticed the trend in the counter-culture as well...  It's a place people can feel comfortable and powerful in just like any other group. ive found myself sinking into that ego hole a few times, as well.

But it's so much cooler on the outside  :tongue:


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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1106443 - 12/03/02 08:44 AM (18 years, 11 months ago)

"Try telling that to Bill Hicks after the Letterman fiasco."

That was network television, no the government, and it wasn't that he was speaking some never before heard truth, he was making fun of pro-lifers.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phluck]
    #1106655 - 12/03/02 11:36 AM (18 years, 11 months ago)

One of the reasons it was banned was the pro-lifers had paid for an advert that was going to run in the break.

As Bill himself said "Freedom of speech for those with the money to pay for it".


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Xlea321]
    #1106929 - 12/03/02 01:39 PM (18 years, 11 months ago)

As Bill himself said "Freedom of speech for those with the money to pay for it".

Bill Hicks was a comedian. Comedians distort and exaggerate for comic effect. Hicks had the constitutional right to air his views on any street corner in the US, or to print up his views and distribute them as leaflets or on a website, or to buy a radio or television station and broadcast his views to whoever had the equipment to pick up his signal.

He didn't need to spend a dime in order to exercise his right to speak freely, but he would have had to invest some money if he wanted to broadcast to the widest possible audience. This is true even of those who AREN'T expressing views considered controversial.

Free speech and free airtime are not equivalent.

pinky


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InvisibleXlea321
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Re: Liberalism [Re: Phred]
    #1107527 - 12/03/02 05:13 PM (18 years, 11 months ago)

Bill Hicks was a comedian.

Well he was a lot more than that. We're not exactly talking Bob Hope..

Comedians distort and exaggerate for comic effect.

It wasn't a joke. He said it during an interview he gave near the end of his life.

or to buy a radio or television station and broadcast his views to whoever had the equipment to pick up his signal.

Phew, so all we need for free speech is our own TV station. Cool, I'll pick one up tomorrow.

air his views on any street corner in the US

He'd have to shout pretty loud. I'm 3000 miles away.

Free speech and free airtime are not equivalent.

In other words the only people who can get their views across to the vast majority of the american people are the rich. That's kinda what Bill said in the first place...


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