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Politics. The feel in your country.

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  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,719
    edited January 2017
    If Snowden had faced the music like Manning, he'd have a case. He and Assange ran away. Manning is the only one who had the courage of her convictions, and is the one who deserves the mercy.

    There is no way to overstate just how unqualified some of Trump's cabinet picks are. Incoming Education Secretary Betsy Devos said we need guns in schools to protect against (I shit you not) grizzly bears. Meanwhile, she would not commit to keeping in place policies that protect disabled students.

    Finally, Trump has now said he wants to show off the US military in parades. Good call. That's always the sign of a healthy Republic. Maybe he can raise Leni Riefestahl from the dead to film them.

  • smeagolheartsmeagolheart Member Posts: 7,963
    Yeah Tillerson, Carson and Devos are three off the top of my head that are completely unqualified. Carson's qualification for HUD (Housing URBAN development) seems to be Donald Trump wants a black guy for Urban development. Tillerson has no experience in government. Devos no experience at all besides being rich and donating Republican and no clue about education fundamental issues

  • FardragonFardragon Member Posts: 4,511
    Ayiekie said:

    Fardragon said:


    Which really just proves that Einstein understood a lot more about Physics than he did Biology.

    Nationalism is simply a large scale manifestation of tribalism, which is hard coded into the brain of homo sapiens in the same way that it is hardcoded into it's near relative pan troglodytes.

    You can't remove it, and under some circumstances it is an essential survival tool. Trying to deny it's existence or eliminate it is a fool's task. The only way forward is accept that it exists and channel it in constructive directions.

    That's wrong on several levels.

    First, nationalism as we understand it didn't exist until relatively recently in history. Nation-states are not a concept of great antiquity. That is part of why Rome and China so effectively were able to assimilate and destroy the cultures they expanded to cover.

    Second, it's wrong because lots of people don't have this "hardcoded essential survival tool". I don't, for instance. The patch of dirt I was born on is not special-er or better than the patch of dirt that was a ferry ride away.

    It's true that various forms of tribalism are common in humanity, but so what? Humans are "hardcoded" not to understand large numbers or statistical probabilities, either, and yet we've reached the Moon.

    Clearly you don't understand what a tribe is. It has little to do with "what patch of dirt you where born on". It starts with your immediate family, and moves out in concentric circles to groups you identify with: maybe work colleagues, crpg players, sport's teams, political parties, internet forums. For some - many - that may extend out to the nation-state, but it doesn't have to. It's what enables humans to co-operate with each other and organise into societies for mutual benefit. To say you feel none of that is to say you care about nothing and no-one but yourself. There are a few people like that, your Mr Trump for example - but they are generally classed as suffering from a mental illness.

    That works fine when it is directed into supporting the tribe. The dark side is when it becomes hatred of "the other". Which I am afraid is exactly what you are doing with your implied attack on people who do think "thier country is special". Liberals, a tribe with which I would broardly identify, are by labelling other tribes as "nationalist" or "racist", and implicitly not worth engaging with, are guilty of both similar sins as those they condemn, and driving away more people into the tribes with the most extreme and destructive views.

  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835
    Ayiekie said:


    As for the Megapolis Athens and other City States they where separate but they would come together to fight common enemies. The 300 movie and sequel would probably be an example for Americans to understand. They all did their own thing but Hellas came first. Alexander the Great made it official.

    1) As I already pointed out, they didn't. They turned on each other all the time, including against Persia in that very war.

    2) Recommending 300 for a history discussion? Really? Even worse than mentioning it is the fact it completely goes against your own point: in 300, the Spartans do everything of importance on their own and are openly contemptuous of other Greeks, especially those "Athenian boy-lovers". Of course, that's not how real history went (also in real history, Xerxes wasn't 8 feet tall, and the Persians did not employ ninjas, so, y'know).

    3) Plenty of people at the time and today didn't consider Iskander and the Macedonians to be properly Hellenic.


    Πας μη Έλλην βάρβαρος. (If you’re not Greek, you’re a Barbarian) This phrase was not talking about race or colour. It meant that if you didn't live by the Hellenic ways you where basically ignorant to the world around you ( Civility, Nature, Social, Gods, Charity, Heroism just to list a few)

    Sacrificing yourself for the good of the people, State and Homeland was expected and a right to be Hellenic.

    None of which stopped them from hating, killing and betraying each other. A lot. Or enslaving each other (and murdering for sport), as long as we're talking about the Spartans. And since it didn't stop this (Greeks invited in the Romans to fight other Greeks, to name but one example), then what exactly was this nationalism you think you see beyond a polite fiction and a real belief that everybody outside Greece was subhuman (also subhuman: women, other Greeks)?

    Like, every society has this kind of thing about how they're better than others, and how people are supposed to give their all for the homeland and all that jazz. While you can make the argument that the Hellenistic city-states were special, it wasn't because of their xenophobia and rah-rah-sacrifice-for-the-polity sermonising. The Achaemenids did the same thing, and so did Republican Rome (and Imperial Rome, and, like, everyone else).


    The National anthem that Hellenes use today sings of liberty and the blood spilt to keep it Hellenic. Nationalists over 2000 years ago and Nationalists now. Denying it is ignorant and embarrassing.

    And for most of that last 2000 years, the exact same Hellenes scorned and despised that heritage, tied up as it was with pagans. Greeks in Greece itself, in Crete, in Cyprus and in Anatolia itself would call themselves Romans. Because that's what they were - the heirs of a multiethnic universal Christian state, the Roman Empire. The Ottomans knew this - that's why they were the "Millet of Rum".

    All of this cherished calling back to classical Greece was made up. A fantasy. Just like Japan made up a fantasy about a warrior code called "bushido" that the samurai supposedly followed as part of its national myth-making. The cold hard fact is that Greek "nationalism" didn't exist until after the French revolution, and it took the form it did primarily because a) Western Europe was really into classical Greek philosophy and science, and b) Western Europe could help them throw off the Ottoman yoke. Until then, Greek "nationalism", such as it was, was tied to the Byzantine Empire and the Orthodox Church, not Athens or Sparta or Corinth or Thebes or Macedonia. This is historically well-attested.

    Beyond that, in insisting that modern nationalism has existed throughout history, you are going against the consensus of historians (the people who actually study this stuff for a living). If you want to change my mind, please link to some published papers or books defending your point of view.
    1) They didn't turn on each other, they would fight with each other all the time so that in order to make sure they stayed sharp and to cull the milk drinkers.

    2) Recommending 300 and it's sequel was an insult that went way over your head. Actually the sequel shows how even through political hatred they all came together to get rid of the greater evil. Like they did during Ottoman Rule.

    3) This shows your true colours. His name was Alexander, son of Phillipas and Olympia. Today it is Alexander the Great ( Ἀλέξανδρος ὁ Μέγας, Aléxandros ho Mégas ). Born in the Hellenic state of Macedon and King Of Hellas. ( Greece )

    I will not argue in this forum about the origins of a Hellenic historical figure or of the Hellenes themselves with a Vardaskan, Bulgarian or Turk. If you would like to discuss Nationalism some more I would oblige, other than that I have nothing more to say to you other than good day.

    Vardaska is not a Hellenic problem, it is a Bulgarian problem. Vardaskans stole their language, alphabet and identity.

    " I do not steal victory" Alexander the Great

  • StormvesselStormvessel Member Posts: 654
    edited January 2017

    I wrote a post about James O'Keefe and Project Veritas in a thread a while ago. It involved a Democratic party official named Scott Foval who tried to artificially stir up trouble at a Trump rally. The details appeared to check out; it didn't look like Project Veritas was totally misrepresenting Foval's actioins.

    I don't completely trust Project Veritas as a source, but I'm not convinced that all of their work is lies and fabrications.

    @jjstraka34: If you have a link, please share it.

    The truth is that neither side gives two craps about fair play. It's all about advancing your own values and politics. That's the world we live in. People like O'Keefe and Foval are two sides to the same coin.

    TakisMegas
  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835
    I wonder what the EU is going to do to help. I think C.E.R.N is the culprit but that's the conspiracy theorist in me I guess.

  • smeagolheartsmeagolheart Member Posts: 7,963



    The truth is that neither side gives two craps about fair play. It's all about advancing your own values and politics. That's the world we live in. People like O'Keefe and Foval are two sides to the same coin.

    And that's the false equivalence the GOP relies on.

    People consider Hillary Clinton deceptive so Trump can be nasty and people say she's as bad as him. James O'Keefe goes out and edits video to make one guy look bad so they are all bad. The GOP obstructs Obama so the government doesn't work and then they blame it on Obama.

  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835



    The truth is that neither side gives two craps about fair play. It's all about advancing your own values and politics. That's the world we live in. People like O'Keefe and Foval are two sides to the same coin.

    And that's the false equivalence the GOP relies on.

    People consider Hillary Clinton deceptive so Trump can be nasty and people say she's as bad as him. James O'Keefe goes out and edits video to make one guy look bad so they are all bad. The GOP obstructs Obama so the government doesn't work and then they blame it on Obama.
    Yea, Thanks Obama.

    smeagolheart
  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835
    Found this interesting too.

  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835
    Sorry guys, this one cut deep.

  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 975

    If Snowden had faced the music like Manning, he'd have a case. He and Assange ran away. Manning is the only one who had the courage of her convictions, and is the one who deserves the mercy.

    Why on earth should Snowden have done that, given what the US government had already demonstrably done (twisted the law beyond recognition, engaged in persecution and torture of Chelsea Manning)? It's not enough that he does a good deed, he has to be a martyr too?

    As for Assange, he's not American and Wikileaks isn't based in America, so why on earth should he face the "justice" of America?

    In fact, why should anybody? How about Barack Obama face some justice for violating the Constitution he swore to protect, face some justice for bombing over half a dozen countries he wasn't at war with, killing hundreds or thousands of innocent civilians, engaging in illegal assassination and rampant spying, lying to the public about all of this, and the list goes on and on? Why doesn't George W. Bush and Dick Cheney face justice for starting an illegal war on false pretenses, advocating and defending the widespread use of torture, twisting scientific data to avoid having to do anything about global warming, and in every way making the world a worse, less safe place? How about Donald Rumsfeld? How about war criminal Henry Kissinger? I could write a full-length book just on US government officials from both parties who escaped any punishment for demonstrable crimes.

    Snowden got fired from his job. And that's the entirety of the consequence he deserved to face, or would have been legally obligated to face if the US wasn't trying to absurdly stretch an WWI-era espionage law to cover people who clearly aren't doing espionage.

    ThacoBell
  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 975


    1) They didn't turn on each other, they would fight with each other all the time so that in order to make sure they stayed sharp and to cull the milk drinkers.

    Mmm. No. And anyone who thinks this is true should actually read up about the wars between the Hellenic city states. Sparta and Athens weren't fighting in the Peloponnesian War to "keep each other sharp".


    2) Recommending 300 and it's sequel was an insult that went way over your head. Actually the sequel shows how even through political hatred they all came together to get rid of the greater evil. Like they did during Ottoman Rule.

    Didn't watch the sequel, one was enough, thanks. Maybe it was amazing, but I shan't find out. By the by, the Romans (Greeks) spent the better part 400 years of Ottoman rule not doing this, only doing so when the Ottomans were at a weak point and the Romans were being helped by Western Europe. Which is also when suddenly they started identifying with the Classical Greece so beloved of Western Europe, and not the Byzantine Empire that Western Europe despised.


    I will not argue in this forum about the origins of a Hellenic historical figure or of the Hellenes themselves with a Vardaskan, Bulgarian or Turk.

    You're not. I'm Canadian, of either Scots or Irish origin based on my last name (I'm not sure which, don't really care either). I have no dog in this fight other than an interest in history and the truth. Googling "Vardaskan" is pretty unfortunately revelatory, so I'll bow out at this point since it's likely to continue getting personal/heated. You may have the last word, if you wish.

  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 975
    Fardragon said:


    Clearly you don't understand what a tribe is. It has little to do with "what patch of dirt you where born on". It starts with your immediate family, and moves out in concentric circles to groups you identify with: maybe work colleagues, crpg players, sport's teams, political parties, internet forums. For some - many - that may extend out to the nation-state, but it doesn't have to. It's what enables humans to co-operate with each other and organise into societies for mutual benefit. To say you feel none of that is to say you care about nothing and no-one but yourself. There are a few people like that, your Mr Trump for example - but they are generally classed as suffering from a mental illness.

    While that's largely true (well, I doubt that's a fair descriptor of Trump, but whatevs), I was responding to someone specifically talking about nationalism in the context of "tribalism writ large". Hence that was also what I was saying I didn't have.

    However, you're gonna have to citation needed on "tribalism" being "what enables humans to cooperate with each other and organise into societies for mutual benefit", since "tribalism" actually sabotages all of the above as much as it helps it. You're also going to have to cite what data leads you to believe that someone lacking tribalism cares about nothing and noone but themselves, since that is basically equating all love, affection and empathy with tribalism, which is not a mainstream viewpoint to the best of my knowledge.


  • simplessimples Member Posts: 540
    wow this is a all a bit much

  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 975
    simples said:

    wow this is a all a bit much

    You should've seen the first hundred pages!

    ThacoBell
  • simplessimples Member Posts: 540
    i thought this was going to be about how people felt in their respective countries.
    joke's on me, it's an intellectual pissing contest.

    Mathsorcerer
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,001
    simples said:

    i thought this was going to be about how people felt in their respective countries.
    joke's on me, it's an intellectual pissing contest.

    This thread started out exactly as you described. Unfortunately since last year's election in the U.S. the content has been 'Trumped' so to speak...

    CrevsDaakThacoBell
  • simplessimples Member Posts: 540
    yeah, that's actually why i clicked, but i don't feel like reading ten pages of people trying to be intellectuals.

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,001
    Can't say that I blame you @simples. I've been reading this thread from the beginning though and it's been pretty entertaining. Brexit hijacked the thread for a while too. Something else will come along eventually.

  • simplessimples Member Posts: 540
    @Balrog99 i have a lot of opinions concerning both, but they have probably already been covered so i'm just going to sit back and not get involved

  • smeagolheartsmeagolheart Member Posts: 7,963
    The End Of Trump's Reign Could Be Way Sooner Than You Think

    Cracked.com article urging people to get off their asses and register to vote and vote in 2018. Trump's reign might not even last that long if he's impeached. Since he's refusing to divest his fortune and will having conflicts of interest immediately after being sworn in that's not impossible.

  • semiticgoddesssemiticgoddess Member Posts: 14,831
    @simples: The thread isn't for everyone, but there's a lot of substantive stuff going on. It ebbs and flows and changes direction, but I've been following this thread daily for quite some time now (mostly because it's a high-risk environment for breaking the Site Rules), and there are some insightful comments here and there.

    It's also a really nice place to find controversy, if you're intellectually curious about other viewpoints. Or if you just like watching people argue; whatever. There's a lot of diversity of thought here. I count a half-dozen reliable liberals, a half-dozen reliable conservatives, and even people as far left as a communist and as far right as a fascist.

    We tolerate viewpoints as long as people abide by the Site Rules. We've been cracking down harder on personal attacks and disrespectful behavior--your fellow forumites are not acceptable targets. I have to reiterate that from time to time, and sometimes the moderators and I issue formal warnings (which stack and can lead to a permanent ban), but mostly my job involves talking to people.

    @Ayiekie: I don't know how @Fardragon uses the term, but when people say tribalism has an evolutionary purpose, they usually mean that it bands groups of people together for mutual benefit, and usually the discussion is about xenophobia.

    The idea is that, in a pre-modern environment without the rule of law, land and resources are up for grabs, and violence can buy access to both. Kill your neighbor, steal his food, take over his land, and kidnap his wife. In that context, mistrusting and even fighting with other tribes is the safe option because they can benefit by hurting your group. It's in your best interests to value your tribe above all others.

    These days, tribalism just isn't as functional. If a different tribe ever threatens me... well, I have the police now to keep me safe. And the military. And the government at large, which won't get my vote if it fails to protect me. I don't need to fear strangers much in my world, because killing and robbing people is generally less profitable than having a job--which means most strangers are just other people with jobs.

    But the rule of law is fairly new on an evolutionary time scale, and old habits die hard. People are still a little xenophobic, whether through nature or nurture or both, and we're still outgrowing that phase of our history.

    That's the basic idea. Tribalism used to be functional--albeit immoral--but these days it just doesn't work as well. The most xenophobic nations, and the most xenophobic people, now tend to be poor and unsuccessful.

    ThacoBell
  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835
    simples said:

    yeah, that's actually why i clicked, but i don't feel like reading ten pages of people trying to be intellectuals.

    Here Homie, my apologies for sounding too smart. Maybe this will stimulate you.

    Animals are idiots.



  • TakisMegasTakisMegas Member Posts: 835
    CNN contributor Marc Lamont Hill says that only “mediocre negros” support Donald Trump. This just one day after the President-Elect met with Marin Luther King the 3rd, son of Martin Luther King Jr, the famous Civil Rights leader.

    I do not share the views of CNN, this presenter or his channel.


    semiticgoddess
  • semiticgoddesssemiticgoddess Member Posts: 14,831
    Sometimes black people today will use "negro" as a generic, non-pejorative term. But using it on the news is simply not going to go over well.

    TakisMegasAyiekie
  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,719
    I'm of the opinion that a demographic group whose ancestors were enslaved for hundreds of years, and whose parents and grandparents didn't even have anything approaching equal rights in this country, can talk however they damn well please.

This discussion has been closed.