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   G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic:  Politics
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   Author  Topic: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic:  Politics  (Read 52389 times)
Stegfucius
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G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic:  Politics
« on: Jun 24th, 2004, 1:18am »
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Yup, politics! Oh, brother! BUT, done "the Gridiron" way, i.e., keep it personal,... uh,... no,... I mean, let's stick to "sharing" our "personal" political beliefs, and let's NOT get into political debate, i.e., let's not "politicize" this thread.  After a bit of a politically epiphanous evening, I think my post about my "politics" will serve as a solid model (not content-wise, structurally).  All I would ask is that you "reflect on things and think things through reasonably thoroughly" (tell me that ain't a tongue-twister ) kind of like I have before posting on this thread.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #1 on: Jun 24th, 2004, 1:34am »
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Well, guys, I HIGHLY suggest you sit down as you go to read this. For those who have come to know (an approximation of) my "politics" here, which actually are way more elusive than that which may be determined merely by way of my stance(s) on the upcoming Presidential election and Iraq, this will be a bit of a shocker (though my "bottom line" hasn't changed ... )!
 
While watching Bill O'Reilly tonight, I, for the first time, saw Michael Moore speak in an interview for himself. Granted it was an interview done back in February of 2002, which is kind of a "political age" ago, BUT I must say the guy was not an incoherent ranter. He did kind of blow it in the end with a rather frivolous jibe toward George W. that wasn't apropos, well-founded or called-for. However, regarding the bulk of what was discussed, which was Bill Clinton and mainly economics, taxes in particular, his arguments were very sound and he was not a hypocrite (while O'Reilly wants to be taxed less than the 50% he already is, Moore thinks taxes for those in their (high) bracket should be higher, like 60 to 70%, which he himself would gladly pay). Moreover, I was in agreement. This prompted an evening of productive political reflection for me, "through" which I came to a greater understanding of how to think about "politics in general" and after which I can now better articulate where I stand as a political being...
 
There are three general areas on which people stand "politically". Here's where I stand "on them":
 
  • Economics - Again, despite where I stand on Bush, if you haven't figured it out "matter-of-factly" from the way I run this place,... I am quite (quote-end quotes intended) "liberal",... somewhere between FDR and "pure" Marxism, i.e. as per his writings UP UNTIL the "Communist Manifesto", not "big C" Communism or even "big S" Socialism. I believe that someday, maybe toward the end of my life, but probably not... for hundreds of more years, capitalism, serious, modern-day ills of which are in their formative stages, will have served its purpose in the evolution of human socio-economics and organizing society and we will evolve beyond it, i.e., it will die out in favor of a "higher-level" system of exchange. In the meantime though, while seeds of this should be planted, there will be no (Marxist) revolution (that's just forcing things); we must let capitalism "run its 'natural' course" and do "the best" we can with it. Doing "the best" we can does, for me, mean ("Peter Pan-style") tiered taxes, where the rich pay a higher percentage than the poor, the richer the more, the poorer the less; this would kill two birds with one stone: make the lives of those who have less at least more comfortable and give more money to the "society" to work with (please continue reading before jumping to a conclusion here) as, hypothetically, taxing a guy making two million a year three percent more amounts to WAY more than taxing a person making $20,000 a year 30 percent more. IN ANY CASE THOUGH, ALL OF THAT SAID, quite paradoxically, WHILE FOR (TOO) MANY THIS IS THE "KEY" ISSUE, it is an area which affects MY day-to-day politics VERY LITTLE: obviously, I am more concerned with the more philosophic long term, but, moreover, on a more practical level: 1) I don't think politicians, moreover Presidents, as long as they are just working "within the system", really have much of an effect on economics; ecomonics goes in cycles and is determined by market factors that no one person can control, and 2) regarding taxes, I don't really want to give more of anybody's money to the government as things stand right now; things need to be laid out better and more forthrightly for the people and we need to reassess how our tax dollars are SPECIFICALLY being allocated. So, in summary, though economics is an important "philosophic" issue for me, it is not a determining "political" factor for me.
  • International Politics - An area that does influence my politics, especially in this day and age and one that I have a particularly poignant take on having lived abroad in South Korea for SEVEN years of my life, being able to speak the native language there and marrying a Korean... Here, I am VERY "conservative",... Jeffersonian even, but in the modern, ever-increasingly interconnected world, we cannot just ignore the world and isolate ourselves. The Middle East MUST be dealt with and terrorism MUST be defeated at all costs, which, regretfully, may be high at the proverbial "end of the day".
  • Social Issues and Domestic Politics - An area that has a moderate effect on my "politics of the day" is one on which I am, well, a "moderate". But, more a "cumulative moderate" than a "wishy-washy moderate", i.e., I do have convictions on social issues, but they vary widely and ultimately it all "averages out"; I ultimately rely on reason and common sense, which in the current era we are in leads me to being "liberal" when it comes to the legalization of marijuana, sexuality, the definition of the family, protecting the environment including wildlife and endangered species, religion, gun laws; "moderate" when it comes to abortion, privacy issues, illegal immigration, separation of church and state/Church and State; "conservative" when it comes to the death penalty, minority and gay "rights", freedom of speech issues (who'd a thunk? ), animal "rights", date rape, profiling, parenting.

 
So, there you have "the political" me, as my move down to D.C., of all places, for graduate school and the '04 (Presidential) election become increasingly "on the horizon" with each passing day.
 
Now, how about you? ...
« Last Edit: Jun 24th, 2004, 2:32am by Stegfucius » Logged
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #2 on: Jun 24th, 2004, 11:11am »
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Interesting (at least semantically) tidbits...
 
on Jun 24th, 2004, 1:34am, StegRock wrote:
  • ...I do have convictions on social issues, but they vary widely and ultimately it all "averages out"; I ultimately rely on reason and common sense, which in the current era we are in leads me to being "liberal" when it comes to ... sexuality, ... gun laws; "moderate" when it comes to abortion, ... separation of church and state/Church and State; "conservative" when it comes to the death penalty, ... animal "rights", date rape...

 
To be a "liberal" with respect to guns and gun laws means to be conservative when it actually comes to guns and gun laws.
 
I am a "moderate" when it comes to abortion mainly because in today's religious, socio-econmic "real" world we, ironically, do not have "a choice"; this is "moderation by proxy", in a sense.
 
Regarding separation of church and state/Church and State, I am "moderate" primarily in the sense that I am somewhere between a "moderate" and a "conservative" when it comes to separation of "small c" church and "small s" state, but a "liberal" when it comes to separation of "big C" Church and "big S" State; however, most of the debate today revolves, incorrectly with respect to the spirit of our Constitution, around the former probably because the latter is pretty much a done deal at this point in history (and we should be growing from it rather than still concerning ourselves with it; mission for the most part accomplished regarding this).
 
To be a "conservative" regarding the death penalty is to want it to be liberally applied.
 
To be a "conservative" when it comes to animal rights somewhat ironically means, de facto, being liberal about finding a cure for AIDS; the webs we weave.
 
To be a "conservative" with respect to date rape in an around-about way is more consistent with a liberal sexual lifestyle and take on sexuality.
 
...
 
Anyway, those were just for fun.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #3 on: Jun 24th, 2004, 11:31am »
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Well, let's give this one a go...
 
Economics and Politics:
Ultimately, I guess I am for a flat tax of about 25%.  Let's be equitable across the board.  Why should someone making $100k have to pay a higher percentage in taxes than someone making $10k?  (And don't say, "because they can.")  I earn a decent salary, however, I have friends making half as much as me who are in much better financial shape than I am.  I believe the person making $100k is already contributing to the economy by participating in it more heavily.  Here in New Jersey, the governor is promoting his millionaires' tax which would charge anyone whose gross household income is more than $500k (millionaires? we don't have the brightest governor) a higher percentage in order to lessen the tax burden of those making less than $500k.  This Robin Hood economic system would, obviously, benefit me as I am nowhere near that financial Maginot line.  However, I think it is ridiculous.
 
International Affairs and Politics:
Isolationism seems like the best option.  Why spend countless billions of dollars helping countries who like nothing about us but our money?  But, that's not a realistic stance.  We are the world's superpower.  As such, we have a certain responsibility to help others.  If everyone left everyone to their own devices, the Iraqis would still live in fear of a dictator who raped/pillaged/plundered his own people in order to finance the construction of lavish palaces, weapons to establish power and steal commodities of neighbors (oil in Kuwait), etc.  We cannot leave the corrupt leaders of the world unchecked or it will ultimately come back to haunt us.
 
Social and Domestic Issues and Politics:
Here is where things get a bit muddled.  It's hard to take sides on many of these issues.  I'll just list a number of the more prominent ones:
  • Abortion:  Bottom line, I am anti-abortion.  I think people are using abortions like they use (or should have used) a condom.  Abortion cannot be a form of birth-control.  However, there are circumstances where abortion is necessary.
  • Gun control:  I am very much for gun control.  I don't think people need guns in their homes for protection.  Get a security system, or a dog, or use what I do... a baseball bat.  I have no problem with a hunter having a rifle (so long as it is kept unloaded and locked away from the curious hands of children).  But why would anyone need a semi-automatic handgun?
  • Legalization of marijuana:  C'mon, let's not really consider the legalization of illegal drugs.  We have enough problems with people dying from alcohol abuse and cigarette smoking... do we really need to give people access to yet another vice?
  • Education:  Fund it up the wazoo!  Spend money here and it will, in the end, reduce the amount of money you'll need to spend on other social programs.
  • Crime:  I think we need to be realistic about crime.  For example, why is Martha Stewart behind bars?  She committed a crime, sure, but is she really a threat to society?  Let's not incarcerate white collar criminals.  Instead of having Joe Taxpayer supporting the country club prisons that these people are sent to, make the criminals pay their debt to society, literally.  People who are a threat to society should be behind bars and those who intentionally take the lives of others should forfeit their own.
  • Environment:  Spend the money to protect it.
  • Health Care:  I'm still not sure about this one.  I think employers should take the lead here, but I don't want the government running private enterprise and telling them how to run their businesses.
  • Privacy:  Take all the pictures you want of me.  Monitor my phone lines and internet usage.  Require me to wait in long lines at airports and prove, multiple times, that I am who I am.  That's fine with me.  I have nothing to hide.  And if all of this invasion of our privacy uncovers those who do have things to hide, all the better.
  • Immigration:  Stop illegal immigration.  Limit legal immigration.
  • I'm sure there are more that I have feelings on, but that's enough for now.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #4 on: Jun 25th, 2004, 11:34pm »
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Well, I just got done watching the Peter Jennings special on Guantanamo.  There was surely some substance and surely some "cry me a river".  Peter was his usual tendentious, Canadian (sorry, I couldn't help myself) self, though, for the most part.  For those who watched, I definitely "felt" for the family of the "one" Kuwaiti they profiled, which was particularly poignant as he was from Kuwait, a country we do have excellent relations with (of course, this report doesn't go to help that, and make know mistakes, they would have profiled more if they could, which at least raises a red flag).
 
In any event, the thing that hit me the most...  I realized an important corollary.  One of the American authorities interviewed said that now two and a half years into holding people there (mind you, there are people coming and going, 146 of them, all the time, so not everybody has been there the whole time), there is really no "purpose" to holding these detainees "anymore".  On the other hand, they showed the facility, which as detention facilities go wasn't that bad, and discussed the relatively soft interrogation tactics being employed (but, mind you, this is a war we are involved in, so the key word there is "relatively").
 
From there, the philosophical reasoning skills of sythesis kicked in...  I... we don't... can't know ALL the "facts", "details", "truths", but we can employ our God/nature-given faculty of reason and apply it to what we do know (about/of).  Bottom line, it only "stands to reason", ironically, that the "softer" you interrogate, the "longer" you will probably have to detain.  And, here many of us citizens sitting in the comfort of our homes in tranquility, until the next attack of course, burn the candle at both ends, telling those putting it on the line for us to be "soft", but be "quick", without even realizing the inherent contradiction of such an edict.  We put the squeeze on our own, to put it mildly, while "their own" for the most part "finds ways" to justify their actions.
 
There HAS TO be at least a modicum of accountability ON ALL SIDES for this to work.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #5 on: Jun 30th, 2004, 3:15pm »
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While hanging out and rapping with Markie (Skcus Redef) last night, a VERY intriguing way to approach the upcoming Presidential election FOR UNDECIDEDS came to me...  The months, weeks and days leading up to the election will likely be some of the most dangerous and threatening times our country has seen since 9/11 and thwarting attacks is going to be no small task for our government.  If you remain undecided as the election approaches (like Mark here) and ultimately find yourself in the voting booth without a significant, successful attack on our country having been pulled off in the period leading up to the election, you may just want to throw all the rhetoric out in the trash where it belongs and vote for the proof in the pudding, Bush.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #6 on: Jul 23rd, 2004, 5:14pm »
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This is a very broad topic, so let me just put my own views, briefly, in the format that has already been started. (BTW, I just found this thread today.)
 
Taxes: For personal taxes, I like a flat tax of 10% with a bottom number below which no taxes are paid. This number should be determined by base income plus number of dependents, education benefits and/or deductions, medical expenses, and all the usual methods to avoid double-dipping taxing. It would actually lower the taxes of the middle and lower income households while giving the upper income levels a fair tax structure without the usual sheltering of income (which of course would have to change in my perfect world). It won't happen, but I like the method. As for socialism and communism in any form, they may look good on paper but would never work in the real world. People are not all "just nice." Some wolf will always rape the sheep. By the way, this method would actually raise my personal taxes.
 
International Politics: Isolationism cannot work in this century. Today's humans are territorial mammals with very sharp claws. We spend the billions of dollars in aid as flat out bribery. Without that, it would be more selfishly useful for our bribe targets to spend much less on helping our enemies. Not a very nice scenario, but it's what we have in this century. World leaders did not get into the positions they are in by being nice guys. They are no better or worse than Roman Caesars or Attila or Stalin or any other leader, respected or rejected, you can think of. But the veneer of civilization makes it possible to do it all with power and money instead of bloodshed and slavery and terror. Sorry boys and girls, it's reality. I like our bribery and humanitarian aid methods better than any other method humanity has come up with so far. And our "big guns" don't hurt.
 
Social and Domestic Issues: I firmly believe that freedom goes as far as the next guy's toes. I also believe that honorable intentions feel nice, but we cannot expect to do feel-good recommendations without solutions as a "hand-cuff." (Hey, this IS a football forum!) Abortion is bad, so give those breeding kids an alternative and some education. And how many kids have we adopted lately? How much help do we give to single moms? What penalty does a disappearing father pay? Prisons for white-collar criminals are an unnecessary expense. So why are we not demanding laws that make these people pay back what they stole, per Philly? The environment seems to be nothing more than a political football (!) these days. Just an excuse to trash the other side by twisting any fact du jour. Where is the science? Big financial grants are politicized, not apportioned by value of results.
 
Health Care: One of the most shameful things of our times. It's about power and money and politics. (Don't get me started. In an age when vitamins and preventive medicine and true cures are trashed in favor of prescription drug band-aids, it's disgusting.)
 
Church and State Issues: As I said earlier, freedom goes as far as the next guy's toes. No more thought needed.
 
Immigration: Again, all politics. Political parties fast-track immigrants from targeted demographic groups into this country to get a bigger voting base. I know a guy who is a great wage earner (now in Finland where he originally came from) who had to go home when his visa expired. He can't get back in unless he illegally does an end run (!) through Mexico. He would be here and paying taxes today if he could. Right now, he's a computer genius working in Finland. Finland's gain, our loss.
 
Drugs: Freedom goes as far as the next guy's toes, once more. The problem is that people who over-do drugs often have no concern for anyone else's toes.
 
And one more:
 
The Media: They are not there for your benefit. They are there to make money. Not all the reporters, etc., some of whom are there for altruistic and/or professional reasons. But they are all in a system. It's not a problem, though, really. Just do your own thinking and listen to all sides. And I'm sorry, Steg. Michael Moore is a complete ass. He may have put on a persona for the O'Reilly show to avoid crucifixion, but do your own research. He's in it for the bucks by trying to be controversial and sucking up to the guys and gals who will give them to him. Oh, he also is desperate for the attention.
 
As for the upcoming election, the Democrats are in disarray. The Clinton/McCauliff crowd has hijacked that party. For the moment, Bush is the only sensible answer.
« Last Edit: Jul 23rd, 2004, 5:19pm by Callie » Logged

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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #7 on: Jul 23rd, 2004, 7:37pm »
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Great write-up, Callie! I am with ya!
 
A couple points of clarification regarding how Callie's relates to mine...
 
Regarding Michael Moore, MAKE NO MISTAKES I can't stand the guy and realize all too well that all "his" hubbub is more about "him" and his pocketbook than anything else.  I think he was on his best behavior two years ago with O'Reilly and as a result did make some sense when it came to economic theory.  However, he has obviously grown increasingly delusional, megalomaniacal, haughty AND, well, self-serving with time and is obviously "capitalizing" on the political season.
 
I am the only one who holds somewhat socialist/(small "c") communist views and though Callie was not calling me on the carpet specifically, with regards to my economic "beliefs"/theories, please understand that I am much more with St. Thomas More, author of Utopia, than I am with Karl Marx:  I firmly believe that it can't be forced (by way of a Marxist-style revolution); capitalism has to run its course (which we are probably not even near the end of) as More suggested.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #8 on: Jul 23rd, 2004, 7:47pm »
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Thanks, Steg.  But I honestly doubt that a utopia is available to us mammals, at least at this point in our evolution.  Maybe for a millenium or so.  You are a philosophy major.  I was a psych major.  It's great ideas versus biological nature.  I think we need both.  The idea is to reach up to the philosophy in spite of the biology.  But always beware of the biology.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #9 on: Jul 27th, 2004, 7:50pm »
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The plight of the philosopher... Always seeing ahead of his time; forever condemned during his time.
 
...
 
Peter Jennings is such a pussy! He, along with the rest of the "mainstream" liberal media, NEVER asks the tough questions! I could care less about Teresa Heinz-Kerry's employment of the phrase "shove it" and her subsequent slanderous, disparaging and... defensive comments about the reporter... if she were in the right and, mind you, I have no love loss towards journalists in general. She did in fact say "unAmerican". The reporter was right! Pete, the Canadian, had her right there tonight. He couldn't have treated her with softer kid gloves. How come, when asking her about the incident, he didn't ask her the "bottom line" question about the "truth" of the matter? Hell, "they" want us focusing on the fluffy, "debatable" part. Only on FOX News will you actually see the speech that she just made in which she in fact had said "unAmerican" and which the reporter's question regarded! ... This is SO tiresome!
« Last Edit: Jul 27th, 2004, 9:15pm by Stegfucius » Logged
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #10 on: Jul 27th, 2004, 9:08pm »
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Well, I just watched O'Reilly on Fox.
 
I expected Ben Affleck to be a moron, but he actually conducted a reasonable discussion, made his points, and sounded intelligent.
 
On the other hand, Michael Moore is an even bigger asshole than I thought he was.  He sounded like a 10-year-old arguing with his parents just trying to "hobby-horse" one point to try to win in any way.  
 
And did you watch the eyes of Affleck and Moore as they talked?  They both know how to control facial expressions due to Hollywood craft, but Affleck was solid and Moore was...oh, well...just an ass.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #11 on: Jul 28th, 2004, 12:46am »
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Callie, I couldn't agree with you more.  What a TOTAL Moore is!  The question about whether Bill would send his kids to DIE in Iraq that he kept harping on represents the logical skills of a child. First off, we have not implemented and will not implement a draft; serving in the U.S. military is a choice, moreover, a job and even a career.  Secondly, it's a tendentious question the sole function of which is to play on heart strings; no parent wants to send his/her child to war, no less to DIE, BUT if one's child wants to go and serve, the answer to that question would probably be an, albeit instinctively reluctant, "yes" (I wish Bill would have thought of that retort).  Thirdly, being sent to Iraq is hardly a death sentence; any loss of life is sad, but let's face it, we have lost roughly .05% of our soldiers in Iraq.  Fourthly, it's just an erroneous hypothetical question with no basis in reality.
 
...
 
However, regarding some good points for the Dems...  Edward Kennedy's speech was solid.  He spoke to a lot of positive truths of the Democratic party and he did little bashing of Bush in the process.  MOREOVER, how about that Barak Obama???  That guy's the real deal.  His speech was FANTASTIC!!!  Of course, it was generalized and I don't agree with 100% of his positions, BUT overall it was VERY REASONABLE (reason-able), VERY INSPIRING (and INSPIRED) and just plain AWESOME (emphasis on AWE)!!!  Depending on where we are in the future, I wouldn't put it past this guy's getting my vote for a "bigger" office someday.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #12 on: Jul 29th, 2004, 9:12pm »
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I am not so scared by what Michael Moore, as an American, is claiming; I am scared that he, as an American, is claiming it.
 

 
And, how about these idiot "anarchist" protesters today? Would their parents "call them on their cell phones" and tell them it's time to come home already and ground them for a week... for behaving like imbeciles in public and burning the flag of their own country?  Either that or pack 'em up and send 'em to Liberia for a few months and see how "life" elsewhere is!  The grass is always greener...  ...  In any event, the parents of these children couldn't be expected to take such a stand with their children.  It's a sad commentary on the state of parenting in America.  Parents don't want to be parents; they want to be their child's "best friend".  Isn't that sweet?  Stop trying to be your teenagers' friend and just "raise" 'em, for goodness sake (in both senses of the phrase).
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #13 on: Jul 29th, 2004, 9:31pm »
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Dead Bang On, Steg.
 
The people raising these kids were the spoiled Hippies of the 60's and 70's. THEIR parents (maybe that should have been Parents with a capital P) had seen WWI, were working just to FEED their kids after living through the Great Depression, and understood (even if they didn't want to) that their kids had to do WWII, which was just an extension of WWI.
 
A lot of Boomers haven't quite figured out that they are now adults. They do the desperation things instead of helping their kids to go beyond them (which is what every good Parent wants for his/her kids). They are too often too busy trying to exceed their own parents (in terms of a selfish, lack of understanding mode) instead of letting their own kids be the best. They are a little too insecure. They need a bit of hardship to understand the world. They need a good kick in the Butt!
 
Just my thoughts....
 
Modification:
 
I am getting SICK of this re-writing of history I'm seeing in the Convention tonight.  I have nothing against good liberals and good Democrats.  But this is important.  John Kerry went to Vietnam on his father's advice to get political points for a career in politics.  He was there for something like four months.  His father ordered his superior officers to award John medals.  Then John Kerry went home and then went back to shoot some fake footage (which you saw some of tonight).  By the way, how do you earn all of those medals in four months in a cushy, protected job as a photographer?
 
Compare that with John McCain.  He was a prisoner of war in, I believe, the Hanoi Hilton!  His father made it possible for him to be traded for another soldier and go home.  John McCain refused to get out of that situation at the expense of another man.  And John McCain suffered until he could go home, on his own terms.
 
John McCain is a man.
 
John Kerry is a jerk.
 
If you want me to consider voting for a Democrat, no problem.  Just give me a real man.  Not a Clinton or a Kerry.
 
I don't know where they dug up these guys telling the world that they served with Kerry and he is their hero, but don't call yourselves the Band of Brothers.  That totally disrespects some real men.
 
« Last Edit: Jul 29th, 2004, 10:11pm by Callie » Logged

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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #14 on: Jul 29th, 2004, 11:45pm »
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Wow!  Pure diesel, Callie!
 
...
 
My last "statement" on the night,... and I am only bringing this up because Kerry specifically did so again,... let's finally get this right... FOR THE RECORD, ENRON, a Texas company, flourished and partied on the backs of their people during the Clinton years and was exposed and toppled during the FIRST year of the Texan Bush's presidency!!!
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #15 on: Jul 30th, 2004, 10:09am »
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I got this in an email bouncing around the web, so I can't just put in a link.  Here it is:
 
"One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line." - President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998  
 
"If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program." - President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998  
 
Iraq is a long way from [here], but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face." - Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998  
 
"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten time since 1983." - Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb 18,1998  
 
"[W]e urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the US Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destruction programs." - Letter to President Clinton, signed by Sens. Carl Levin (D-MI), Tom Daschle (D-SD), John Kerry (D - MA), and others Oct. 9,1998  
 
"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process." - Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998  
 
"Hussein has chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies." >- Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999  
 
"There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has invigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programs continue apace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of a licit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies." - Letter to President Bush, Signed by Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, December 5, 2001  
 
"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them." - Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002  
 
"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country." - Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002  
 
"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power." -Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002  
 
"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction." - Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002  
 
"The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..." - Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002  
 
"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security." - Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9,2002  
 
"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years . We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction."- Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002  
 
"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy his chemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do" - Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002  
 
"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members.. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons." - Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002  
 
"We are in possession of what I think to be compelling evidence that Saddam Hussein has, and has had for a number of years, a developing capacity for the production and storage of weapons of mass destruction." - Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL), Dec. 8, 2002  
 
"Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime . He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation ... And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction . So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real" - Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003  
 
SO NOW EVERY ONE OF THESE SAME DEMOCRATS SAY PRESIDENT BUSH LIED--THAT THERE NEVER WERE ANY WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION AND HE TOOK US TO WAR UNNECESSARILY!  
 
Send this to everybody you know..The media and networks won't do it. Why do you suppose that is?
 
 
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #16 on: Jul 31st, 2004, 9:10pm »
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Made ever more poignant by Callie's post above,... I have always basically supported our "effort" in Iraq and always thought there were "many" reasons for our going in there (WMD's and Saddam's non-compliance with the U.N. resolutions was just the "tangible", "provable", "arguable" argument that could be made), but after watching an episode of "Investigative Reports" today on A&E about the second holocaust, the killing fields of Cambodia, I now am absolutely 100% certain that we did and continue to do the right thing in Iraq. I am also even more convinced that the French and far (but not that far) left-wing liberal Americans are of the same ilk that doesn't know their assholes from holes in the ground. They are anti-American in a very real sense and France, where Pol Pot was educated, can hardly be called an ally. Actually, all they do is use (the) US to the hilt and back-stab (the) US at will (still upset over the Louisiana Purchase, I guess, the territory of which they got back off Spain by essentially lying). Our great Thomas Jefferson once coined France "our natural and habitual enemy" (granted that was back when Napolean was in power, but still... it's at least ironic, if not downright dead on the mark). The very foundations of our great country are predicated on a "fight" (for freedom). Cambodia could perhaps have been prevented (with our help) if it weren't for the French and American anti-war liberals.
 
With regards to France's not supporting (the) US in Iraq, because of the timing, a lot has been made of what we sacrificed for them in the Battle of Normandy. But, even more ironic (say that fast ten times and you'll soon just be saying, "moronic") is Vietnam (the war we actually did win in a paradoxical sort of way as you will see below) where we were bailing the French out. Cambodia, a former French colony, was suffering the same kind of meltdown (when in stepped Pol Pot). Haiti to today suffers from France's not being able to "hold it together" (and then perhaps "give it back" in an orderly and peaceful fashion like the British have done with many of their colonies, namely Thailand and Hong Kong).
 
So, with Vietnam, in steps far (but not that far) left-wing anti-war Americans (i.e. hippies, you know... the group that can't get a grip even to today) causing havoc and division. There are theorists that say that we could have won the war in Vietnam or at least pulled off "a Korea" had it not been for the anti-war protesters' fueling North Veitnamese propoganda and demoralizing our troops. Great job, hips! Go smoke 'em another peace pipe,... you ignoramuses. Needless to say, I concur with this analysis.
 
Now, had we won in Vietnam or even perhaps just pulled off "a Korea", we might have been able to thwart Pol Pot and at least mitigate his atrocities or perhaps even defeat him altogether beforehand (I mean they were a rag-tag bunch who the Vietnamese kicked the shit out of, ending the regime in like two months in 1979 and sending Pol Pot and his cronies to live out their days in the remote rain forests of Cambodia from then on) and at least half the people there wouldn't be living in a third-world country if we just pulled off "a Korea" (the intimation, though, is that we would have just kicked their ass). Of course, ALL of this could have been avoided had the French gone about administrating their colonies better. Bottom line, we couldn't do a thing about Cambodia; our hands were tied when our left-wing hippies won Vietnam. So, in actuality, in the end, WE, Americans actually did win Vietnam, and our anti-war liberals along with their incompetent French friends actually helped set the stage for Pol Pot and the second holocaust. Great job! Way to think it through! It's a bit difficult to think, though, when you are in a 24-7 pot-induced haze (mind you, I am all for an occasional (social) toke, like an occasional (social) drink).
 
Heck, Europe (except for the U.K. probably) would now go by the name Germany if it were up to the pussy French, who couldn't fight their way out of a paper bag, and the convictionless maxims of weakness by which American far (but not too far) left-wing liberals live by.
 
...
 
I DIGRESS...
    The dude who recently ultimately caused the whole downtime situation with my web sites makes me think of the clueless wishy-washy mindset of far (but not that far) left-wing liberals. Their intentions may be good, BUT their lack of guiding principles and "thinking it through" leads to trouble. This guy from Canada (another one of our great French-influenced "friends") who had made that complaint was probably thinking he was asserting some individual cyber rights of some sort, doing his part to enforce the anti-spam laws and in the process sticking it to "the man". Meanwhile, the way this system works it is set up in a way that helps "the man", sticks it to the little guy and encourages Mafia-style enforcement by private agencies and, ultimately, this fool is unwittingly being used. If that scenario doesn't smack of well-intentioned, but not well-informed far (but not that far) left-wing liberal America, I don't know what does.
« Last Edit: Jul 31st, 2004, 9:16pm by Stegfucius » Logged
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #17 on: Jul 31st, 2004, 10:26pm »
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Some people never change:
 
http://www.sunderland.ac.uk/~os0tmc/occupied/collab.htm
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #18 on: Aug 1st, 2004, 10:54pm »
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Just thought I'd share this with you all here...
 
I wrote the following to Ed Bradley and 60 Minutes about this report, http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/03/04/60minutes/main604060.shtml, from tonight's show...
 
Dear Mr. Bradley and staff of 60 Minutes,
 
Regarding the story of the recently ordained Gay Episcopal Bishop, Gene Robinson, he's just got it so wrong, logically...  The natural, biological purpose of human genitalia is procreation though we do not always use it in that way.  Human life, however, cannot be conceived by way of homosexual relations.  It follows then that an inherent "reality" of the homosexual lifestyle is that the act of sex is basically about enjoyment of the flesh, which is just fine for us common folk.  But, as a man of the cloth, he is supposed to be above the temptations of the flesh or at least that is what he should (feel obliged to) "represent" if he were sincere in his vows.  During the interview he states, "We've always had gay bishops.  All I'm doing is being honest about it."  That is so wrong and arguably politically-motivated and selfish.  He should keep his sexuality to himself just as a (for argument's sake, (known) sterile) heterosexual priest should.  ...  And, I must digress...  In a somewhat ironic twist, perhaps, in their ancient wisdom, this is why the Catholic Church decided to require abstinence of their priests and nuns (at least, officially).
 
...
 
Is this not right?  And, would not a line of questioning along these (not often pursued) lines been very revealing?
 
Thank you for anticipatively reading this and hopefully responding.  I am...
 
...Sincerely,
 
Steve Stegeman

 
...
 
Consistency and contentment in life is achieved by, more than anything, thinking it through and making sense out of your life.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #19 on: Aug 4th, 2004, 5:57pm »
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Callie, who's takin' this? ... I'll just say...
 
Those are some cute, witty one-liners, but as a whole they paint a very inaccurate picture, just as any set of one-liners would to describe such a complex reality.
 
on Aug 4th, 2004, 1:57pm, junkyardjake wrote:
By the way, I am a Libertarian ( http://www.lp.org/ ) and find the state of American politics at the moment to be repulsive. I wouldn't vote for GW Bush or John Kerry if the ghost of James Madison appeared on the six o'clock news and said it was the right thing to do. I think the two -party system with it's lucrative links to powerful money interests and an increasingly centralized media is beginning to resemble fascism, quite frankly.
 
http://www.rense.com/general37/fascism.htm

 
While I do partially agree with you with regards to our (cracking) bipartisan system and am intrigued by a more pluralist democratic set-up, I have to (once again ) fall back on my 7 years experience living overseas in Korea, a pluralist democracy which has HUGE problems (that, of course, if you never experienced, you would never know) and mindfully traveling, i.e. not necessarily "vacationing", abroad and say that such statements are more indicative of a lack of knowledge of what it is like "out there" in the rest of the world vis-a-vis a commentary on our overall situation in America. My oversimplified one-liner for all this: "The grass is always "greener" (ironic analogy) on the other side of the fence... until you hop over it."
 
As regards the argument made in the link you provide there in the quote above, again, just snippets, but there is also a serious logical problem called the post hoc, ergo propter hoc or "after-so-because" fallacy, which I, as is the usual for philosophy students, had to learn as an undergraduate philosophy major. It describes the "disease" (of fascism) "from the symptoms in" (inductively... and in this case, tendentiously) as opposed to "out to the symptoms" (deductively), which is a very natural thing to do. I digress... Mind you, he doesn't even mention ALL the symptoms, tendentiously dealing with or altogether leaving out little things like MASS MURDER/GENOCIDE, a fascist regime's often coming to power by way of a violent revolution against its own people, the leader's specifically claiming to be God incarnate, extreme poverty which is ignored by those in power, etc., etc. Those "symptoms" wouldn't have helped him prove his point, though. Anyway, moving right along, the process of induction, the logical process most prevalently used in science, can be applied in a VERY dangerous and disingenuous way if not accompanied by sound and thorough application of the scientific method (which is NOT what's happening in the piece you linked to there), and, in any event, deduction is the usual, bottom-line logical method for analyzing non-scientific issues for non-sociological or non-psychological study, such as that of law. The aforementioned is why this fallacy is so dangerous... because it seems to make sense (it actually does within its own inductive line of reasoning and if the premises go unquestioned/are tacitly accepted) and, thus, is so convincing and easily sold (if not completely thought through by the "buyer"). This page you link to here is actually a quintessential example of this. If you are getting a headache trying to wrap your brain around this, here is a concrete example: the flu will (probably) be accompanied by a cough, BUT a cough does not necessarily mean it's the flu. It could be bronchitis (which I am currently just getting over a bout with ), a common cold, a smoker's hack, pneumonia, mono, asthma... Need I go on? And, they all require different treatments. If you think what we have here in America is even remotely fascist, well,... I suggest you read some more "academic(ally)" (accepted) and thorough "books" on the issue and/or go live (anywhere) abroad for a few years and learn the language so as you can deeply and substantively communicate with the people. You could start simply by just tuning in to some poltical talk shows that challenge your beliefs (ironically a post about which I have been planning ) and documentaries on real fascist regimes like are often aired on PBS (which recently did an excellent one on North Korea), A&E (like the one on Pol Pot I reference in my second-to-last post above), The History Channel, etc.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #20 on: Aug 4th, 2004, 9:24pm »
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I'm still here, Steg, and lurking whenever I can with fast eyes.
 
As I told Steg with a back message, I'm not bailing from the Gridiron. I just have some work issues (GOOD ones) for a bit. But I had to stop and do a comment for this one. (I was a psych major. It's an easier read than philosophy is. More mammal, less smarts.)
 
A lot of Jake's points above talk about our change-ups in dealing with foreign governments. The US does not just run in and take over a country and make it a territory and kill off whoever we don't like (at the usual level) and force everyone to do things in only one way like our enemies would. We set up some guy and try to get him to handle that country the way we want him to do it. That means freedom for the citizens. Sure it's self-interest. Did you like 9/11? Yeah, we're controlling it when we can. Who does't? It's like assistant coaches. (This is a football forum.) And as we see, sometimes they become lousy dictators. Then we go back and take them out. It may be just the way of the world, but we all have to try to survive here. A football fan should appreciate this concept.
 
As for moral issues, give me a country or two who is more checks-and-balances about these topics. Sure, we're debating and fighting over ideas. But we're not putting people into rape rooms or through the chipper or mass murdering people who disagree with us. We duke it out like good forum guys who argue the point and try to prevail. But we haven't turned into total killers of all who differ. (Although the Insane Gang might bee worth watching on this!) Check out Saddam or Hitler or Stalin. (This is not about the Insane Gang. That was just a joke. Please don't kill me.) I'm sure all sides have some dirty secrets that no one at the top wants out. All sides. Hey, I'm not working on that level, thank God! I do like Clancey novels. There are a lot of things in the Universe that we would cringe from in terror if we only knew. We're mammals. That is going to happen until we evolve a bit more. (Can YOU get to the top now?)
 
I have to admit that I didn't get to the site Jake linked; I'll try to get to it. ALL ideas should be put in the checks-and-balances if they do not hurt others. Our freedom goes as far as the next guy's toes and no further. That's the evolution.
 
The 6 o'clock news has become shill sites for homers. When Bush, Sr., didn't know the price of milk it became the lead story on prime time news for days. When Teresa Kerry recently went to Wendy's and did not know what Chili was (poor deprived creature!), no prime time news reports were heard. It could just as easily go the other way. Prime time news is lead by whores.
 
As for women, we just look for a level playing field like every non-preferred group does. We'll handle it. Just don't put us in a situation like they get in the Arab Fundamentalist world. Freedom goes only as far as the next HUMAN'S toes.
 
Bill and Hillary Clinton are users of anyone they can use. Terry McCauliff is the same. They are a good match-up in their current business.
 
As for homosexuals, in my own opinion, all animals evolve to band together against anyone from a different group. It was about survival and competition for territory and the food that was in it as the process evolved. I do not think that homosexuals are bad so long as they do not do things that would be wrong in any animal group, like harming others. However, Steg, the days of worrying if we can procreate enough are over. Religious leaders are also animal/mammal/human. Let the "stockholders" decide. Evolution.  
 
The Republicans are a corporation. (This does not necessarily mean that any corporation is good or bad. They are functional entities. Some are good and some are bad.) Let the stockholders decide. You are a stockholder, Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, etc. Readers of this forum know where this stockholder stands.
 
Oh, and the United Nations members are groups trying to get their own selfish wants when they are not capable of grabbing enough for their own self-interested desires. They are not the wonderful organization we learned about in Civics class.
 
So, for a wrap-up: Try seeing the world as herds and troupes and whatever else groups of animals are called. That's what it is. Whether you like it or not, you are the product of millions of years (and maybe more) of basic evolution, and you are one member of a herd or troupe or whatever. (Sorry, Fundamentalists. God made it that way even if the world has only existed for seven days or 6,000 years and the appearance of eons is just to test us for his/her/its own reasons. I am not omniscient enough to argue with him/her/it about it.) But what you will find if you want to argue politics is that it works just like groups of animals. Competition, cooperation, deception, education, hierarchy, sacrifice, domination, submission, success, failure.
 
Do checks-and-balances and be a part of the great experiment. But watch out for the users who want to use YOU.
 
 
« Last Edit: Aug 4th, 2004, 9:42pm by Callie » Logged

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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #21 on: Aug 4th, 2004, 9:28pm »
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Crap.  I have to go back and fix the apostrophes.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #22 on: Aug 4th, 2004, 10:43pm »
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on Aug 4th, 2004, 9:24pm, Callie wrote:
(I was a psych major. It's an easier read than philosophy is. More mammal, less smarts.)

You always get me hot when you talk like this, all animalistic and shit.
 
Quote:
...  That means freedom for the citizens. Sure it's self-interest. Did you like 9/11? Yeah, we're controlling it when we can. Who does't?

 
I lost you here, Callie.  I can see you are transitioning here and, of course, I grok the general point you are making, but specifically... ...
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #23 on: Aug 4th, 2004, 11:07pm »
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GREAT NEWS!!!
 
The two Filipino twins conjoined at the head have successfully been separated!!!  Yea, that's indicative of and is happening/has happened in fascist nations.
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Re: G.T.K.Y.G. - Topic: Politics
« Reply #24 on: Aug 5th, 2004, 6:55pm »
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on Aug 5th, 2004, 12:38am, junkyardjake wrote:
Steg, You are going to be an awesome philosophy doctor;...

 
I agree with that, brother. ... ...
 
Quote:
...that rebuttal beautifully addresses the subtle periphery of the argument (while masterfully avoiding many of the salient allegations).

 
Well, I don't agree with that.  I am more so heading the argument off at the pass (and from the ground up, so to speak) by putting into question its logica and the premises on which it is predicated.  Once the foundation crumbles (to me) the point is no longer.  You are looking at it from the "outside in" (or from the sky down), not from the "inside out".  The proof of that is pretty much in the pudding of your claim above, brother.
 
Quote:
What do you make of this witty one-liner?
 
"If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy." -  James Madison

 
I think it's an insightful and brilliant (though not completely the way you probably think it's brilliant) quote from one of our very wise founding fathers that is actually quite logically tight and cleverly-worded, but is also indicative of that point in time and history and should ultimately be put in context.
 
In any event, my take aside, it is a conditional that has yet to come to fruition.
 
MOREOVER, does NOT mean what I think you are suggesting it does, namely that:
 
"If there is a guise of fighting a foreign enemy, (then) tyranny and oppression will come to this land," which 1) incorrectly necessitates (the affirmation of) B in the case of (the affirmation of) A, and 2) logically precludes or minimizes (the efficacy of) ALL other factors:
 
If A, then B. ~= If B, then A. (VERY common logical error)
If A, then B. = If ~B, then ~A.
 
Or, "If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy." = "If there is NO guise of fighting a foreign enemy, (then) tyranny and oppression will NOT come to this land," which 1) necessitates (the negation of) B in the case of (the negation of) A (which is NOT what you're arguing/what your argument is founded on), and 2) does NOT preclude or minimize (the efficacy of) ANY other factors, the "guise of fighting a foreign enemy" could be one of a number of factors.
 
This "flexibility" to Madison's prediction is why I think it is both wise, clever AND brilliant.  It's NOT the categorical statement or even a categorical statement (the way I think you are portraying it to be).
 
Think through the logic like this:
 
"If you go to the party, I will go to the party." ~= "If I go to the party, you will go to the party." because "I" can still go to the party alone.  The conditional is indicating that it is "you" who cannot go to the party without me, not "I" without "you".  I.e.:
 
"If you go to the party, I will go to the party." = "If I do NOT go to the party, you will NOT go to the party."
 
Many people make this error of thinking that the subordinate adverbial conditional "If" clause is the main clause.  It is not; the main clause is the main clause; the subordinate conditional clause is the subordinate conditional clause.
 
Besides the "illogic" here, the other problem I have with your presenting this quote here is its inconsistency with what you went on to write here, JYJ:
 
Quote:
...the founding fathers never contemplated a government where corporate interests, religion, social matters and the government were so intertwined.

 
So, I gather you are saying that the founding fathers were, as can only be expected, speaking in terms of the world in which "they" existed and could not envision "our" world now, which was VERY FAR off in the future for them.  I actually agree with that 100%, brother.  But, doesn't that assertion inherently mitigate the value of Madison's statement you quoted above?  Madison was speaking about "his" world "then", not "our" world "now".  You can't have you cake and eat it to.
 
Quote:
(They also expressly prohibited an income tax and we see what happened there).

 
Again, I am sensing that you don't like the way taxes have evolved in America.  But, again, aren't the recommendations of our founding fathers dated (for a time and a world that no longer exists) and, consequently, basically moot?
 
Quote:
Moreover, the reason that other countries suck, and we don't is explicitly because of our extraordinary system...

 
Generally speaking, I agree.  Specifically, though, I think it's because of economics/our economic superiority (though I'd like to think it's more).
 
Quote:
...that, among other things, proscribes for the removal of religion from public policy affairs and carefully allocates powers to separate branches.
 
In many ways, we have breached the essential spirit of democracy that the founding fathers envisioned, let's take the example of separation of church and state...

 
Well, , I don't think that's the case.  I think it's a total misomer actually.  I also think that the puzzle you then went on to try to put together, mainly as regards Israel, is missing MANY peices and is, thus, VERY speculative at best, likely quite questionable, and perhaps at worst (somewhat ironically) downright chauvinistic.
 
In any event, JYJ, you've made a presentation here and now we're hashing it out (which is VERY FUN to me ).  However, in doing so, I don't sense your "responding" to and presenting this "in light of" the theretofore (granted, pretty (glass half-empty) one-sided (glass half-full) unified) discussion (despite it's glass-half-empty one-sidedness/glass-half-full unity, there were some at least well-thought-out, at best absolutely brilliant points made that I don't see your presentation "considering").  I mean...  Don't get me wrong.  I know with your initial post you kind of tried to tie it in, but, let's face it, that was more of a (fabricated) segue than a substantive address.  Also, it's fine to take things in a brand-new direction.  But, when issues are brought up that were intelligently addressed beforehand, it is "nicer" (both to the person and in general) and, mind you, MUCH more efficient to "dialogue" than merely "present".
 
Along these lines, I thought I (if not absolutely correctly) concisely, in a way that is not often considered, and at least intriguingly addressed the issue of separation of church and state that I think would be cooler "acknowledged"/"reacted to" rather than just "drown out"/"talked over":
 
on Jun 24th, 2004, 11:11am, StegRock wrote:
Regarding separation of church and state/Church and State, I am "moderate" primarily in the sense that I am somewhere between a "moderate" and a "conservative" when it comes to separation of "small c" church and "small s" state, but a "liberal" when it comes to separation of "big C" Church and "big S" State; however, most of the debate today revolves, incorrectly with respect to the spirit of our Constitution, around the former probably because the latter is pretty much a done deal at this point in history (and we should be growing from it rather than still concerning ourselves with it; mission for the most part accomplished regarding this).

 
And, please, JYJ, do understand that my point is not to disparage; it's to facilitate substantive progress and talking "with/to" each other and avoid people talking "at" each other.  I mean, case in point, Callie and I are quite thoroughly and specifically addressing/reacting to/even dissecting your posts (whether it's in a/the way you want is not "really" of import).  Secondarily, I am more interested in what we here of our own volition and by way of "responsive" dialogue come up with rather than presenting or proving party platforms.  I mean the issues on this thread have been FAR FROM debated along partisan lines.  It has not been a Republican versus Democrat (versus Green Party) thread.  I present what I believe as what I believe, not the Republican Party's platform, which I obviously do not strictly adhere to, and, in any case, I am "really" not a party guy.
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