Author Topic: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?  (Read 1150 times)

DonaldD

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #50 on: September 04, 2019, 11:43:35 PM »
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I think you are confused about what I said, though that may be on me.  I never said I was responding to the WaPo about this one story
C'mon, Seriati, at least have the courage of your convictions.

You spent 3 paragraphs condescending to TheDrake about bringing up this article as it was so clearly unsubstantiated  propaganda... and then when you use the word "lie", that is exactly when you started generalizing?  Except the end of that very sentence belies your claim:
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So the media sells a lie, ie fake news, and you jump on calling for accountability?
TheDrake was specifically calling for accountability concerning the WaPo claim that the President promised pardons for illegal activity, and you know this.  At least be honest with yourself.

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #51 on: September 05, 2019, 12:07:20 PM »
Whatever you say. If You think anonymous sources from a serial liar is trustworthy, let’s see how that works out for you.

No collusion.

Since we all know that Trump is a serial liar, I'm not sure what your point is.  ???

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #52 on: September 05, 2019, 04:27:07 PM »
I never said I believed it (although personally I do, because it seems so much in character of the President :) ).

So again, you believe it regardless of whether its true because its something you want to believe is true.  Almost the definition of how to write propaganda.  Make it something the audience wants to believe or is afraid is true.
 

When a man tells a lie, then another lie, then some pathetic lie, then another...and someone says that he lied about something, is it so surprising that I actually believe that man has lied again?  The man, of course, is Trump.

It is well within his character--his egotism, his ignorance and/or disdain for the law, his immorality, his belief he is above the law--that he very well might say something like that.

When it comes between believing a writer whose livelihood depends on his accuracy, and a President whose disdain for accuracy is well-known, I tend to side with the former.

. . .

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This is a classic false dichotomy.  The most you can say is that it is unproven, and ask that we give Trump the benefit of the doubt.

What's funny is that what you are saying is more like a false dichotomy.  Effectively, because an unproven statement was reported, our options are to believe its true or "give Trump the benefit of the doubt."  When in fact, the option I'm taking is to ask for evidence - which of course doesn't exist.

Are you not the same person that claimed there was no proof that Obama's administration lied about Benghazi?  There's a 100X the proof there, including actual emails, yet you don't believe it.  But here, because an anonymous person said they heard something, you are all in.

So I'm going to point that you guys are living jokes on this.  There's no standards you're following other than tribal loyalty.

You're straw-manning me.  I didn't say it was proven.  I didn't say anyone had to believe it.  I just said no one can call it an outright lie.

In fact, I am pretty much taking exactly the same position you are, but on the opposite side.  I'm asking for evidence to show that the statement is untrue. :)

And review what "evidence" means.  Not for a court of law, but in general.  Just  because evidence is not admissible in a court of law does not mean it isn't evidence.

Finally, I do not believe I ever stated that "there was no proof that Obama's administration lied about Benghazi," in the sense that they told an untruth.  They certainly did.  What I disputed is that they told a purposeful untruth and never corrected it. 

I assume you are referring to them saying the attack was motivated by the Quran-burning tape.  They did say that, and it was false.  But they based this on an initial report from the CIA, which the agency later retracted.  And once the CIA stopped saying that was the reason, they stopped saying it.

Don't you wish the current Administration was that forthright? ;)

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Saying it is proven to be a lie is at least as bad as saying it is proven to be true.  That is also "fake news." ;)

Would be, did I say it was "proven to be a lie"?  Is the only way to deal with malicious rumors and gossips to prove they couldn't possibly be true, and failing that means they are true?  Is every girl that's ever been called a slut, really a slut if they can't provide video evidence that they aren't one?  Is every person really guilty of every crime anyone else says they're guilty of, or just the people that look like child molesters?  After all they should know better than to look that way if they are innocent.

I'm getting depressed just reading you guys.  No belief whatsoever in any concepts related to justice, no understanding of why accusers have to be credible, why our legal system MANDATES the right to confront an accuser.

Heck, you guys are literally the people on the Salem witch trials who burned innocent women because the allegations sounded like they could be true.

Wake up, funny how you can be "woke" and totally asleep at the same time.

Once again, you are straw-manning me.  I didn't say it had to be true if it couldn't be proven to be a lie.  I just said one can't call it a lie unless one has proof.

It is a subtle distinction, but an important one, one that Conservatives need to learn.  Often in the climate debate, a denier will supposedly "disprove" some scientific experiment or indication that AGW is occurring.  Since he has cast doubt on the science, he declares that he has "disproven" AGW and that it is all a lie.

Of course, he has done nothing of the sort.  Even assuming he has actually "disproven" a piece of evidence for AGW, he has not shown that AGW is not happening.  It could still be happening, even it there was no scientific evidence of it occurring.  Just because we can't detect something doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

Similarly, just because someone finds the evidence of this report weak doesn't not disprove that it is true.  If no one had reported it at all, it could still be true.

When I hear "fake news," I assume you mean that it isn't true, that is it a lie, and it is a completely made-up story with no basis in fact.  Well, we don't know that.  The reporter very well have made it up.  Or the reporter could be relating a completely true account.  We just don't know, based on the evidence we have.  But saying the evidence is not sufficient to conclude the story is absolutely true does not mean it is sufficient to conclude it is completely false.  That's the point I'm trying to make.

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #53 on: September 05, 2019, 04:33:26 PM »
You're straw-manning me.  I didn't say it was proven.  I didn't say anyone had to believe it.  I just said no one can call it an outright lie.

In fact, I am pretty much taking exactly the same position you are, but on the opposite side.  I'm asking for evidence to show that the statement is untrue. :)

Your comment wasn't directed at me, but you're omitting the most relevant part of Seriati's point in your answer. You're saying that you have an easy time believing the idea that a known liar has lied again- fair enough. But we're not actually discussing the believability of whether Trump lied. The situation is rather than a known liar has told you that another known liar has lied. Sure, you can believe it because it's easy to believe that liar 2 lied again. But Seriati's point is that believing anything liar 1 says is itself problematic. The question isn't at all whether we're surprised if liar 2 lies. The question is whether we should listen to anything liar 1 says as if it's evidence of anything.

In this instance, taking 'the oppositie side' of Seriati can't really mean anything other than you ignore the news organization as being part of the broken telephone, and are treating the 'news' as if it comes to you unfiltered somehow. The opposite side of "don't believe liar 1 unless it's verified" is "don't doubt liar 1 unless a lie is verified", and has no pertinence to how much we trust liar 2. Do you see?

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #54 on: September 05, 2019, 06:24:07 PM »
It may be the opposite side, but it comes to the same conclusion.

Sure, don't trust the reporter who reported what Trump said: he's a liar, and you can't trust him (even though what he reported may be true).

But also don't trust that what the reporter said is a lie, either.  You can't trust Trump, either, and he very well may have said what was reported (even though he may not have said it).

cherrypoptart

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #55 on: September 06, 2019, 12:44:42 AM »
I'll defend Trump on this assuming he said it, with perhaps a little of advocacy for the devil just because nobody is tackling the issue head on and instead debating whether or said it or not. So for the sake of argument I'll assume he said it and go from there. So what? He intends to get the wall built and if laws have to be broken to do it then it's his prerogative if they are federal laws to pardon anyone he wants to who breaks those laws that are standing in his way.

Hopefully everyone is caught up on 24 by now but if not spoiler alert. Apparently the President has the authority to pardon someone in advance even for murder which happened when the President agreed to pardon Nina even if she murdered federal agent Jack Bauer.

Now generally murder is a state crime so that may run into some problems of jurisdiction there and the President as far as I know doesn't have the authority to pardon state crimes but if these are federal environmental laws and federal endangered species act provisions that are holding up the construction of the border wall while we are literally being invaded by tens of thousands of illegals per month then that is the President's prerogative for the defense of the nation which is his number one job and priority.

There is a strong case to be made that the President can legally do this as it falls under his Constitutional power to pardon. There is nothing in the Constitution that says he can't promise to pardon someone in advance and that means there is a very strong legal argument that he can do exactly that.

Again this all presupposes we are talking about federal laws and not state laws, but the federal government has jurisdiction over the border so if there are state laws that get in the way the federal government would be able to preempt them in this specific area.

Just for some argument by absurdity if Russian tanks were rolling across the southern border and Congress because it was controlled by Democrats who didn't want to give Trump the advantage of being a wartime President while running for re-election just absolutely refused to declare war even to defend the country from invasion, would Trump be within his legal rights as President to mine the Southern border even if it would obviously destroy the environment and kill a lot of animals, many of them endangered? And could he promise to pardon anyone who violated federal laws that got in the way and then deliver on that promise later and actually pardon them as they were charged with federal crimes? Or would he have to wait years for lawsuits to wind their way through the courts before he did anything concrete to stop a blitzkrieg of Russian armor?

So this answer has to separate parts. One, can he legally do it according to the Constitution?

Two, even if he can do it, should he? Those are completely different issues and many may get the second mixed up with the first assuming that just because they think he shouldn't do it that necessarily means he legally can't do it and it's unConstitutional.

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #56 on: September 06, 2019, 02:27:16 AM »
It may be the opposite side, but it comes to the same conclusion.

It doesn't!

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Sure, don't trust the reporter who reported what Trump said: he's a liar, and you can't trust him (even though what he reported may be true).

But also don't trust that what the reporter said is a lie, either.  You can't trust Trump, either, and he very well may have said what was reported (even though he may not have said it).

No, you're not seeing the argument. If liar 1's statements cannot be taken seriously, then you know nothing at all about the events in question. If you think you can glean a probability of Trump lying based on a disreputable report, and then claim you still have basis to believe Trump lied, then you could also hear no report at all, close your eyes, and at any time saying that you believe Trump lied (about whatever you like). Do you see now? You're basically pulling "Trump lied" out of the air totally at random if you're willing to believe liar 1 about the nature of an event. May as well eliminate the middleman and just announce Trump has lied whenever you like. This is why the discussion has to be about whether the reporter should be considered to be a known liar or not. Because otherwise you're writing the news yourself. And that is not 'the other side' of Seriati's position.


Crunch

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #57 on: September 06, 2019, 07:44:07 AM »
If you look at this under the left’s definition of lying vs the traditional definition, you understand what’s going on. Traditionally, we think of lying as intentionally saying things you know are not true or at least should have known. The modern leftist definition of lying is that someone is saying things I don’t like.

Consequently, you see why they believe a dishonest media without any further thought since the media is using the leftist definition too. They’re really only agreeing that they all don’t like Trump. They don’t care if it’s true or not, that’s completely irrelevant to the accusation of lying.

You also see why right wingers disagree, they’re concerned about people in the media saying things are true.

This entire thread demonstrates this over and over again. It’s really pretty amazing.

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #58 on: September 06, 2019, 11:19:17 AM »
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If liar 1's statements cannot be taken seriously, then you know nothing at all about the events in question. If you think you can glean a probability of Trump lying based on a disreputable report, and then claim you still have basis to believe Trump lied, then you could also hear no report at all, close your eyes, and at any time saying that you believe Trump lied (about whatever you like). Do you see now? You're basically pulling "Trump lied" out of the air totally at random if you're willing to believe liar 1 about the nature of an event. May as well eliminate the middleman and just announce Trump has lied whenever you like. This is why the discussion has to be about whether the reporter should be considered to be a known liar or not. Because otherwise you're writing the news yourself. And that is not 'the other side' of Seriati's position.

Except that the discussion was never about whether the reporter was a liar or not.

We've never mentioned the reporter's name.  We've never analyzed his previous reports.  No, he is just another faceless reporter who had anonymous sources.  We've assumed from the beginning that, since he used anonymous sources, his story must be a lie.  Or, at least, that is what I've understood Seriati's argument to be.

And that is both stupid and irresponsible.

Stupid because some reports from anonymous sources have turned out to be true.  You can't discount all anonymous reports.

Irresponsible because, if you don't give at least some credence to the media, even to reports from anonymous sources, then you have taken away our best resource to keep the government in check.  Because a lot of whistle-blowing occurs from anonymous sources, who see possible illegal activities but don't want to lose their jobs or be punished in other ways.  Which means that the government can keep just about everything in the dark through intimidation.  Which means we are kept in the dark.

Certainly an anonymous report is not worthy of legal action.  But it is worthy of keeping an eye on the government about.  Because it is not beyond the realm of possibility that a President that only evaded obstruction of justice because his underling neglected to follow orders might not have tried to influence illegal behavior by offering pardons.  IMHO.

Of course, if you insist, I can modify my stance, too.  If we discount everything that liar 1 says, then we should also discount everything liar 2 says.  So when someone defends Trump because Trump denied something, he is writing the news himself, too, because we don't know anything, because everyone is a liar, and we can't trust anyone.

And in that case, what else can we do but write the news ourselves. :(

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #59 on: September 06, 2019, 12:36:28 PM »
Except that the discussion was never about whether the reporter was a liar or not.

We've never mentioned the reporter's name.  We've never analyzed his previous reports.  No, he is just another faceless reporter who had anonymous sources.  We've assumed from the beginning that, since he used anonymous sources, his story must be a lie.  Or, at least, that is what I've understood Seriati's argument to be.

Unless I'm crazy I thought Seriati's point is literally that these 'anonymous reports' are self-serving and not to be trusted. He used the word "propaganda", which has strong connotations of not just this one reporter as being questionable, but rather the entire media network that pays the reporter's salary. In fact the term "reporter" is practically void of most of its content that it used to imply so I would personally avoid being concerned about the pros and cons of each particular writer when speaking broadly about propaganda-related issues.

And that is both stupid and irresponsible.

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Stupid because some reports from anonymous sources have turned out to be true.  You can't discount all anonymous reports.

You've just hit the magic button: as long as a certain percentage of reports turn out to be true it gives green light to throw in spurious ones on the grounds that "you can probably trust us." This is how all efficient state propaganda is conducted, including that done by the KGB: mix a lot of truth in with the misdirection to lend credibility. If literally everything you say is lies the system fails.

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Irresponsible because, if you don't give at least some credence to the media, even to reports from anonymous sources, then you have taken away our best resource to keep the government in check.

*I* haven't taken away this resource (or any proverbial "I" which includes any of us). You have it backwards: the check against government is an honest media that takes up this task. The check *is not* a general public that has to believe the media first in order to then give the media...what...room to become honest? Trust must be earned, and if lost, earned back. If people feel they're being lied to it's probably because they are. You may point out that they're often confused about which things are the lies and which the truth, but that barren landscape where they have to figure it out in the first place was a development of modern media business models and government partnership.

What you really should be arguing is that if you want a check against government then there must not be a conflict of interest where it's more profitable and easy to avoid taking sides against government. There's no motive at present for them to do this, so why should they? Honor, apparently, is not enough, since what corporation boards in general act using 'honor over profits' as their operating agenda?

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #60 on: September 06, 2019, 02:59:40 PM »
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Unless I'm crazy I thought Seriati's point is literally that these 'anonymous reports' are self-serving and not to be trusted. He used the word "propaganda", which has strong connotations of not just this one reporter as being questionable, but rather the entire media network that pays the reporter's salary. In fact the term "reporter" is practically void of most of its content that it used to imply so I would personally avoid being concerned about the pros and cons of each particular writer when speaking broadly about propaganda-related issues.

While I agree that 'anonymous reports' are self-serving and not to be trusted, you can't just declare any such story absolutely false or a lie.  Either extreme will be wrong sooner or later.  This very story may very well be proven (even to the satisfaction of a court of law) to be true in the future.  I rather expect it will.

Remember, "true" and "false" in real life is not a binary choice.  There are degrees of each.  In this case, because the story comes from anonymous sources who cannot be verified or vetted, there is a fairly low degree of reliability in the story.  But low does not mean zero.  There is a chance it is actually true, that the reporter(s) actually talked to people who witness the event and reported it truthfully.  But until we know all the facts, we cannot know which it is.  We can only estimate the probabilities.

Even when I say I believe the story, I am actually only expressing probabilities.  I am only saying that I believe that the story is more likely to be true than to be false, IMHO.

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You've just hit the magic button: as long as a certain percentage of reports turn out to be true it gives green light to throw in spurious ones on the grounds that "you can probably trust us." This is how all efficient state propaganda is conducted, including that done by the KGB: mix a lot of truth in with the misdirection to lend credibility. If literally everything you say is lies the system fails.

But also remember that "the media" in America is not a single entity.  We don't have a state-run media (medium?  ??? ) coordinating with a single purpose.  We have a variety of actors, some good, some bad, some lazy, some indifferent.  So we will never have a media that is always truthful.  Conversely, we will never have a media that always lies, or even coordinates its lies in order to maximize its ability to fool the public (unless the state or something similar takes it over).  So we all have to deal with an uncertain media, which we can never completely trust (and will never earn our complete trust), but which we can never completely distrust, either.

If you demand that the media will always be truthful, and never make a mistake or tell a lie, then you have set a bar so high no media will ever gain your trust.

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #61 on: September 06, 2019, 03:12:50 PM »
But also remember that "the media" in America is not a single entity.  We don't have a state-run media (medium?  ??? ) coordinating with a single purpose.  We have a variety of actors, some good, some bad, some lazy, some indifferent.  So we will never have a media that is always truthful.  Conversely, we will never have a media that always lies, or even coordinates its lies in order to maximize its ability to fool the public (unless the state or something similar takes it over).  So we all have to deal with an uncertain media, which we can never completely trust (and will never earn our complete trust), but which we can never completely distrust, either.

Yes. Playing the SAT analogy game, a single tyrant is to an entrenched bureaucracy, what a state-run propaganda network is to a decentralized news media with a general agenda. The latter systems (decentralized, with no one person to blame) are the most efficient of the corrupt forms, as no person will ever be obviously at fault, every participant can claim ignorance or that they were following instructions from a higher up (who in turn use lower-downs as fall guys in crisis), and there is no direct line of recourse during a conflict. Further, the decentralized system has a fluctuating degee of truthfulness and slant, so that there is no certain way to measure spin or misdirection, or even to name exactly 'where' the spin is coming from. It ends up coming from everyone and nowhere, because if you pinpoint one case of it there will always be a convenient excuse, or a motte and bailey "hey, why did you take it so literally anyhow, we just reported what we heard". So yeah, it's totally convenient that this system maximally enables the same behavior RT does except that unlike the Russians we in North America don't like being aware that they're doing it.

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If you demand that the media will always be truthful, and never make a mistake or tell a lie, then you have set a bar so high no media will ever gain your trust.

I would actually be satisfied with the bar being set *so* high that it would be difficult, at least initially, to even function as a news network. Let their licences be torched if they're caught ever faking photos or reporting without investigating (i.e. repeating what someone else told them). However I have faith in human ingenuity enough that I know in a different ecosystem where the bar was set much higher people would find a way to do news under those constraints. The means to execute reporting in that manner would have a learning curve and then would eventually become standard. I don't really expect that, although I'm confident that even that level of rigor is doable if that's actually what was required. If the current crop of media companies didn't like it I'm sure a new crop of people who actually feel compelled to serve the public (rather than make a media empire) would step up.

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #62 on: September 06, 2019, 06:45:03 PM »
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Playing the SAT analogy game, a single tyrant is to an entrenched bureaucracy, what a state-run propaganda network is to a decentralized news media with a general agenda. The latter systems (decentralized, with no one person to blame) are the most efficient of the corrupt forms, as no person will ever be obviously at fault, every participant can claim ignorance or that they were following instructions from a higher up (who in turn use lower-downs as fall guys in crisis), and there is no direct line of recourse during a conflict. Further, the decentralized system has a fluctuating degree of truthfulness and slant, so that there is no certain way to measure spin or misdirection, or even to name exactly 'where' the spin is coming from. It ends up coming from everyone and nowhere, because if you pinpoint one case of it there will always be a convenient excuse, or a motte and bailey "hey, why did you take it so literally anyhow, we just reported what we heard". So yeah, it's totally convenient that this system maximally enables the same behavior RT does except that unlike the Russians we in North America don't like being aware that they're doing it.

Doesn't this apply to every system of reporting where a consensus view of reality prevails?

I mean, one of the responses to the accusation that the media has a liberal bias is that reality has a liberal bias.  If reporting the truth accurately favors one side over the other, how can you differentiate that from a decentralized media with an agenda?

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I would actually be satisfied with the bar being set *so* high that it would be difficult, at least initially, to even function as a news network. Let their licences be torched if they're caught ever faking photos or reporting without investigating (i.e. repeating what someone else told them). However I have faith in human ingenuity enough that I know in a different ecosystem where the bar was set much higher people would find a way to do news under those constraints. The means to execute reporting in that manner would have a learning curve and then would eventually become standard. I don't really expect that, although I'm confident that even that level of rigor is doable if that's actually what was required. If the current crop of media companies didn't like it I'm sure a new crop of people who actually feel compelled to serve the public (rather than make a media empire) would step up.

While I would also like to see the news media not be profit-driven, we have what we have.

And everyone, please consider once again, what if proof was found that this story was true?  It is a distinct possibility.  One that declaring the story is a lie discounts.

Crunch

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #63 on: September 06, 2019, 10:29:38 PM »
But what if proof never came?

Boom.

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #64 on: September 09, 2019, 02:08:35 PM »
But what if proof never came?

Boom.

More like "Pfft." :)  I never claimed the report was proven.  I am just objecting to anyone who falsely claims that the report is false.

And, BTW, we may find out.  The House Judiciary Committee is subpoenaing the notes from that meeting.  Will it still be "fake news" if contemporaneous notes by the people there confirm the report?  Will it still be a lie if those who took the notes testify in front of Congress that their notes are accurate?

What it could be is an actual instance of attempted bribery.

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Trump is more exposed here than he probably realizes. Legally speaking, it doesn't matter at all whether or not the pardons were actually given, only that they were offered. Further, even if he thought it was a joke, what actually matters is what his underlings heard. If they believed it was a straight offer, then that would be enough to make it an illegal bribe.

Admittedly, anonymous reports must be taken with more than a grain of salt.  But that alone doesn't make them false.  As I said before, we've seen numerous instances where anonymous sources actually told the truth, which was revealed later.  So while we should put them on the shelf marked "Needs further evidence," we should not dismiss them out-of-hand.

And if this report eventually ends with the headline, "Trump Impeached for Attempted Bribery," now that would be a "BOOM!" :)

rightleft22

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #65 on: September 09, 2019, 04:09:29 PM »
This ‘scandal’ amuses me.
Fact or fiction everyone, defenders of trump or accusers a like, can imagine Trump making such statements.
The defense isn’t that he would never use pardon’s in this way but that you can’t prove he said such a thing.

Wonder how the philosophers of old would view such a matter with regards to ethics and character?

“The Seven Social Sins are:
Wealth without work.
Pleasure without conscience.
Knowledge without character.
Commerce without morality.
Science without humanity.
Worship without sacrifice.
Politics without principle.”
― Frederick Lewis Donaldson

rightleft22

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #66 on: September 09, 2019, 04:30:47 PM »
Even funner If Trump was cough on video (multiple) saying "Don't worry, I'll pardon you," and then latter given that person a pardon
His followers would still defend it.

DJQuag

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #67 on: September 09, 2019, 04:36:42 PM »
Even funner If Trump was cough on video (multiple) saying "Don't worry, I'll pardon you," and then latter given that person a pardon
His followers would still defend it.
Obama did it.
Somehow.

rightleft22

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #68 on: September 09, 2019, 05:24:27 PM »
Even funner If Trump was cough on video (multiple) saying "Don't worry, I'll pardon you," and then latter given that person a pardon
His followers would still defend it.
Obama did it.
Somehow.

My favorite defense

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #69 on: September 09, 2019, 05:38:59 PM »
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I think you are confused about what I said, though that may be on me.  I never said I was responding to the WaPo about this one story
C'mon, Seriati, at least have the courage of your convictions.

You spent 3 paragraphs condescending to TheDrake about bringing up this article as it was so clearly unsubstantiated  propaganda... and then when you use the word "lie", that is exactly when you started generalizing?  Except the end of that very sentence belies your claim:
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So the media sells a lie, ie fake news, and you jump on calling for accountability?

So then you read what I wrote again, and still went with nonsense?   You want to point out where in my response - that's 100% clear I'm claiming this was a coordinated effort from hundreds of media sources (probably by media matters, but of that I have no proof), I said I was only talking about the WaPo?  I doubt TheDrake's linking of that one version of the article was the critical point for the question when it appeared everywhere.

For you ease of reference (and so everyone can be reminded how nonsensicial the hill you're choosing to die on really is, see my actual quote below:

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I note, this got massive spread among liberal new agencies (almost like there was a behind the scenes group spreading it intentionally as propaganda... hmmmm.... looking at you media matters).  If you look you can find hundreds of stories almost all of them from the same day and never any real follow up, other than a couple "if he said it, then it would be..." stories.

Is it on Politifact?  Nope.  Snopes?  Nope.  I can't find it on any factchecker?  Seems odd doesn't it?  I mean, Politifact two days later released a fact check on whether Trump has completed as much of his wall as he promised, but missed the hundreds of articles written on this?  Or did they deliberately coordinate to keep a message going about the wall?

So what's the reality?  Denied by Trump (barely reported on, by the way), based on a "anonymous" source, and sometimes the "anonymous" source describes it as a known to be a joke.

So the media sells a lie, ie fake news, and you jump on calling for accountability?  I'm asking that you hold yourself accountable for spreading misinformation and heck for not being critical in the first place.  I won't hold my breath though, my votes too important.

And just to repeat this:

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You spent 3 paragraphs condescending to TheDrake about bringing up this article as it was so clearly unsubstantiated  propaganda..

Have I (or anyone else) missed the "substantiation"?  Are you disputing that an anonymous statement is somehow substantiated?

Or are you disputing that it's propaganda?  It's clear on this cite that it is in fact propaganda, you have multiple people laying out the "ethical" argument that if it sounds true they can believe it, and not remotely caring about whether it is true.

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TheDrake was specifically calling for accountability concerning the WaPo claim that the President promised pardons for illegal activity, and you know this.  At least be honest with yourself.

And, as I pointed out, the claim appeared in hundreds of left aligned publications, so TheDrake calling for accountability on a story - that for all we know is completely made up - seems outrageous to me, particularly, when the primary defense seems to be that it sounds like it could be true.

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #70 on: September 09, 2019, 06:27:03 PM »
So again, you believe it regardless of whether its true because its something you want to believe is true.  Almost the definition of how to write propaganda.  Make it something the audience wants to believe or is afraid is true.
 

When a man tells a lie, then another lie, then some pathetic lie, then another...and someone says that he lied about something, is it so surprising that I actually believe that man has lied again?  The man, of course, is Trump.

Is that not exactly what I said?  you believe the propaganda because you want to believe its true.  Not because you have any objective reason (or even a reasonable one), just because you want it to be true and it matches with what you believe.

That by the way is the exact same process that every time you've ever criticized voters for being uneducated or sheep they were employing to guide their thinking.  It's everything you've ever believed about low information voters, or the other sides voters who won't look at evidence.  It's everything you think is going on about opposition to science by the other team.

Yet, it's you, not them expressly endorsing the philosophy as a personal credo.   

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It is well within his character--his egotism, his ignorance and/or disdain for the law, his immorality, his belief he is above the law--that he very well might say something like that.

I've yet to see any evidence of this "disdain for the law," that's a false attribution of how the left operates the law to Trump.  Obama institutes and unConstituional order, Trump is showing "disdain" by exiting it.  Judge's ignore the Separation of Powers, Trump admin lets them do it.  Where is the disdain?  Even the "great case" of reallocations on the border are all within the express authority Congress previously granted (meanwhile, where's your outrage over the ObamaCare payments Obama made that Congress refused to authorize?).

Egotism is true.  Absolutely.  Ignorance?  Not seeing great evidence.  Immorality?  Certain amount, yep, but off the mark from other politicians?  Probably less actually, far less evidence of corruption for instance.

Belief he's "above the law"?  Is this evidenced by allowing Mueller to conduct a witch hunt that he could have terminated at any time for to years?  Or is the thousands of pardons he's issued (I mean less than 20 but who's counting)?  Or the afore mentioned honoring what are egregious judicial encroachments on the executive branch?

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When it comes between believing a writer whose livelihood depends on his accuracy, and a President whose disdain for accuracy is well-known, I tend to side with the former.

And when it comes to believing an anonymous source?  What about then?  How's their "disdain for accuracy"?  Their livelihood clearly doesn't depend on accuracy, and their publication status depends entirely on sensationalism.  Has the media ever outed sources that actually lied to them? 

Whole bunch of fake leaks in the last 2 years, has the media stopped using those sources?  You don't know, and neither do I.  Have they even honestly looked at it?  You don't know and neither do I.

Have they got caught actually lying to you about them?  Yep, easy instance, CNN used Laney Davis as the source for its fake article on what Cohen was going to say, then put in the article that they reached out to Laney and he denied comment (as of this point, they still have no retracted the false story).

So really your point hear is stupid.  You believe the writer, which says nothing about why you believe the source.  The writer wasn't in the meeting, they didn't hear it said, you're effectively double compounding the honesty here, because either the writer (less likely) or the source (very likely) could be making up or misrepresenting what happened.

I'm calling you out because the reporter job is to verify leads not just pass off rumor as if it were fact.  That's a separate point and a gross failing when it comes to reporting on Trump.  And it's not minor, is repeated over and over and over that anonymous sources have misrepresented situations and even openly lied, they've passed on information that was detrimental to the country and in some cases even been the actual party that caused the harm (the anonymous release of the mechanism of the Israeli spy mechanism to try and "gotcha" Trump on statements he didn't actually make to the Russians is one example (they went beyond what he'd disclosed)).

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This is a classic false dichotomy.  The most you can say is that it is unproven, and ask that we give Trump the benefit of the doubt.

What's funny is that what you are saying is more like a false dichotomy.  Effectively, because an unproven statement was reported, our options are to believe its true or "give Trump the benefit of the doubt."  When in fact, the option I'm taking is to ask for evidence - which of course doesn't exist.

Are you not the same person that claimed there was no proof that Obama's administration lied about Benghazi?  There's a 100X the proof there, including actual emails, yet you don't believe it.  But here, because an anonymous person said they heard something, you are all in.

So I'm going to point that you guys are living jokes on this.  There's no standards you're following other than tribal loyalty.

You're straw-manning me.  I didn't say it was proven.  I didn't say anyone had to believe it.  I just said no one can call it an outright lie.

Am I really the one that's strawmanning?  I pretty clearly laid out a thought through position on why it should have been verified, and explained why it's propaganda, and even why there's no reason to believe it in its current form.  Did not however call it out as an "outright lie," maybe you can point to where I did?

I get it, your position is actually untenable, so you want to argue against a strawman.

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In fact, I am pretty much taking exactly the same position you are, but on the opposite side.  I'm asking for evidence to show that the statement is untrue. :)

That's not the same position as mine.

If I asked you for evidence that random Democrat did not molest children how exactly would you provide it?  There's a huge difference in asking for negative proof and asking for positive proof.

What's the standard on publication - in your view for a story - it appears to be print as fact, anything someone says against Trump (so long as it could be true), without any verification or evidence, without regard to it's denial (including by others at the meeting), unless what?  Trump can provide a video of said meeting?

That's beyond stupid.

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And review what "evidence" means.  Not for a court of law, but in general.  Just  because evidence is not admissible in a court of law does not mean it isn't evidence.

True, but little girls screaming "witch" hasn't been evidence for over Century, and even they went on the record.

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Finally, I do not believe I ever stated that "there was no proof that Obama's administration lied about Benghazi," in the sense that they told an untruth.  They certainly did.  What I disputed is that they told a purposeful untruth and never corrected it.

Nonsense, go back and read the thread.  And Hillary's revealed emails made it clear they knew it was a lie the first day, which completely obliterates your "purposeful" standard.  Your CIA spin story was also debunked as it became clear they were influenced by the WhiteHouse to put that claim in the record.

So literally total nonsense on your part.  But it is fun to see how people change their memories over time to deal with cognitive dissonance. 

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I assume you are referring to them saying the attack was motivated by the Quran-burning tape.  They did say that, and it was false.  But they based this on an initial report from the CIA, which the agency later retracted.  And once the CIA stopped saying that was the reason, they stopped saying it.

Don't you wish the current Administration was that forthright? ;)

Lol.  This Adminsitration is both more forthright and more transparent than Obama's was in every way.  You man literally got caught with his guys admitting they intentionally lied about Obamacare to manipulate the population, lied about Benghazi to save his election, lied to spy on the Trump campaign, including having wire tapped Trump Tower.

This self delusion on the left, more than anything scares me.  People on your side do terrible things pretty much openly, and you all tell yourselves it never happened.

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Would be, did I say it was "proven to be a lie"?  Is the only way to deal with malicious rumors and gossips to prove they couldn't possibly be true, and failing that means they are true?  Is every girl that's ever been called a slut, really a slut if they can't provide video evidence that they aren't one?  Is every person really guilty of every crime anyone else says they're guilty of, or just the people that look like child molesters?  After all they should know better than to look that way if they are innocent.

Once again, you are straw-manning me.  I didn't say it had to be true if it couldn't be proven to be a lie.  I just said one can't call it a lie unless one has proof.

I see.  Then why are you posting on this thread?  Since we didn't call it a lie, we said unsubstantiated rumors shouldn't be published, and that the lax standards that are causing them to be published are part of a coordinated propaganda effort.

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It is a subtle distinction, but an important one, one that Conservatives need to learn.

Really?  lol.  As far as I can tell, the left's definition of a lie is that it was said by a Republican, and they don't like the answer (without regard to its truth).

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Often in the climate debate, a denier will supposedly "disprove" some scientific experiment or indication that AGW is occurring.  Since he has cast doubt on the science, he declares that he has "disproven" AGW and that it is all a lie.

So what?  That's pretty much a strawman.  What does that have to do with the actual debate over policy?  The left's policies are openly destructive of the environment and would accelerate AGW.

I'm struck by the need to focus your argument on the tiny population of deniers, seemingly in the belief that if you discredit them, then you've won a mandate to conduct massive redistribution efforts that make the environement worse.

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Of course, he has done nothing of the sort.  Even assuming he has actually "disproven" a piece of evidence for AGW, he has not shown that AGW is not happening.  It could still be happening, even it there was no scientific evidence of it occurring.  Just because we can't detect something doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

In another way AGW is a very interesting point.  Assuming we could clearly show warming (which I believe we can, but is not capable of certainty), there's no proof of causation for the Anthropormorphic cause, it's just a reasonable hypothesis that can't be directly tested.  Yet, in your advocacy to show how "conservatives" don't understand lies, you skip over a whole heck of a lot of actual fact to jump to something you believe is more certain than it is, and define as a lie anyone that disagrees with your, without regard to whether they have more factual accuracy than you do.

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Similarly, just because someone finds the evidence of this report weak doesn't not disprove that it is true.  If no one had reported it at all, it could still be true.

It could be true.  I note you didn't dispute any of my hypos, why not?  You also didn't dispute my claim that three anonymous sources at the WaPo told me it was false, why not?  Have you received some proof it isn't true?

Reporting as fact is supposed to be a higher standard than a gossip column. If you can't acknowledge that, I don't see how you can reasonably dispute anything again.

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When I hear "fake news," I assume you mean that it isn't true, that is it a lie, and it is a completely made-up story with no basis in fact.

Why would you do that?  I've expressly set out my standards on fake news dozens of time, and in the case there could be a legitimate question on this thread, I laid out in detail exactly what my issues were with this reporting.

Massive media coordination on the left.  Anonymous sources.  Electoral and political damage.  No fact checkers, even though they fact checked - during that week - claims directly related to the wall being built to which this relates.  Not one scrap of explanation around what the "illegal things" that could be done are.

And quite frankly, the open politicial position of the reporters, the media and their entire recent history of misreporting things about Trump deliberately.

At the end of the day, would it surprise me that they have a source that "said it happened" not at all.  They probably have sources that have sworn that Trump is really an alien from another Galaxy as well, yet they chose not to report those. 

Do you have any evidence that they have used anonymous sources against this President in a manner consistent with past Democratic Presidents?  We know they haven't, in fact, we know they've deliberately buried stories with better sources and actual evidence against Democrats.  Has their record on anonymous sources been fair?  Nope, completely one sided.  Accurate?  Not remotely.  For partisan purposes?  Without fail.

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Well, we don't know that.  The reporter very well have made it up.  Or the reporter could be relating a completely true account.  We just don't know, based on the evidence we have.  But saying the evidence is not sufficient to conclude the story is absolutely true does not mean it is sufficient to conclude it is completely false.  That's the point I'm trying to make.

Yes, you're trying to misdirect the conversation.  Did the anonymous source make it up?  How do you verify that?  Did the reporter verify what they printed?  Nope.  Why didn't they?  Cause it was anti-Trump.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2019, 06:33:39 PM by Seriati »

Crunch

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #71 on: September 09, 2019, 06:30:45 PM »
But what if proof never came?

Boom.

More like "Pfft." :)  I never claimed the report was proven.  I am just objecting to anyone who falsely claims that the report is false.

And, BTW, we may find out.  The House Judiciary Committee is subpoenaing the notes from that meeting.  Will it still be "fake news" if contemporaneous notes by the people there confirm the report?  Will it still be a lie if those who took the notes testify in front of Congress that their notes are accurate?

What it could be is an actual instance of attempted bribery.

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Trump is more exposed here than he probably realizes. Legally speaking, it doesn't matter at all whether or not the pardons were actually given, only that they were offered. Further, even if he thought it was a joke, what actually matters is what his underlings heard. If they believed it was a straight offer, then that would be enough to make it an illegal bribe.

Admittedly, anonymous reports must be taken with more than a grain of salt.  But that alone doesn't make them false.  As I said before, we've seen numerous instances where anonymous sources actually told the truth, which was revealed later.  So while we should put them on the shelf marked "Needs further evidence," we should not dismiss them out-of-hand.

And if this report eventually ends with the headline, "Trump Impeached for Attempted Bribery," now that would be a "BOOM!" :)

You never claim it was proven, just that it has to be believed. Jesus.

DonaldD

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #72 on: September 09, 2019, 10:03:02 PM »
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Originally posted by Seriati:
then you read what I wrote again, and still went with nonsense?   You want to point out where in my response - that's 100% clear I'm claiming this was a coordinated effort from hundreds of media sources (probably by media matters, but of that I have no proof), I said I was only talking about the WaPo?

That you claim there was a coordinated effort in no way conflicts with your misrepresentations of the WaPo story. Have you ever read your own posts?  You are quite capable of spewing 10-20 distinct partisan hackeries within a single post.

But if you want to get specific again, you asked TheDrake whether he wanted to walk back this fake news - but TheDrake very specifically attributed the article to the WaPo, so whether you meant to or not, it was the WaPo story to which you were referring.

Oh, and notwithstanding your later attempts to wriggle out of your initial misrepresentations, those latter references are quite telling
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WaPo's behind a paywall for me.  I read it on about 30 different links, some of which split the anonymous sources some didn't. 
So even though some of those links "split the anonymous sources", you chose to characterize the multiple sources referenced by the WaPo as a singular source, and also conflated the person who was approached for corroboration with the initial internal and external sources.  I did not realize that you consciously made the decision to misrepresent the original article.

Oh, and if you could provide some of those "links" that didn't split the anonymous sources, that would be cool

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #73 on: September 10, 2019, 11:20:47 AM »
This self delusion on the left, more than anything scares me.  People on your side do terrible things pretty much openly, and you all tell yourselves it never happened.

For what it's worth, I think it should raise an alarm that you're so certain that the left has a monopoly on dangerous self-delusion. Sure, one side or the other can veer further towards madness at any given time, but that's just an equilibrium effect; the main issue is the ecosystem pushing politics in this direction. I often find that your critiques are on-point and that you raise issues I wouldn't have thought of. However it's surely implausible that one side is the good guys and the other is the villains; it's actually not possible that such an environment could have yielded the results we see today.

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #74 on: September 10, 2019, 11:27:19 AM »
Fen, my only point on that is that I am in fact aware of and routinely call out people on the right, particularly those motivated by religion for the horrible things they say and try.  I have no interest in, and would move to impeach, any judge that imposed rightwing morality controls on people. 

I also have a large number of friends on the left and in the middle, and not all of them act this way, just a disturbing number, and it's highly mainstream.


DJQuag

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #75 on: September 10, 2019, 11:31:11 AM »
Fen, my only point on that is that I am in fact aware of and routinely call out people on the right, particularly those motivated by religion for the horrible things they say and try.  I have no interest in, and would move to impeach, any judge that imposed rightwing morality controls on people. 

I also have a large number of friends on the left and in the middle, and not all of them act this way, just a disturbing number, and it's highly mainstream.

Your claim of left wing friends and family is interesting. If you wouldn't mind, could you share how you might speak differently to them versus your pretty strident arguments and defenses here?

yossarian22c

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #76 on: September 10, 2019, 11:33:48 AM »
I also have a large number of friends on the left and in the middle, and not all of them act this way, just a disturbing number, and it's highly mainstream.

Act that way in real life or on social media? As a populace we have to learn how to not let the extremes dictate the online/social media conversation. Cable news doesn't help either, sitting around making emotionally charged arguments is easier, cheaper and more "entertaining" than real reporting.

But the extremes online will filter into the real world at some point, I just hope it filters in slowly enough that we figure out how to reverse the trend before it takes complete control of both sides.

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #77 on: September 10, 2019, 11:36:49 AM »
Both, the real life examples though (and until recently) I just chalked up to most people not being terribly smart.

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #78 on: September 10, 2019, 11:47:21 AM »
Fen, my only point on that is that I am in fact aware of and routinely call out people on the right, particularly those motivated by religion for the horrible things they say and try.  I have no interest in, and would move to impeach, any judge that imposed rightwing morality controls on people.

I'm making a bit of a meta point here, tangentially related to the OP, which is that the left/right skew is excacerbated by, rather than solved by, only pointing fingers at one side. I don't know what you do in your private life, but sometimes I wish you would use your reasoning powers to criticize the system rather than just one pernicious element in the system. Your ratio of critiques of right-wing stuff vs left-wing at least on these boards is something like 1:50 if I'm being generous. But I do like your critiques, so don't think I'm disturbed that you point out the stuff you do. 

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I also have a large number of friends on the left and in the middle, and not all of them act this way, just a disturbing number, and it's highly mainstream.

Yes, the behaviors of the left have shifted lately, although perhaps that's not really a suprise since progressivism can probably be linked to openness. But consider that the best way to achieve a slingshot effect is to remain entrenched: when there's a force pushing, and the counter to that is to resist with all one's might, it will greatly increase the torque until when release happens it will go far further than it would have without resistance. On a human level this is how the ecosystem will always work.

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #79 on: September 10, 2019, 12:39:34 PM »
I'm making a bit of a meta point here, tangentially related to the OP, which is that the left/right skew is excacerbated by, rather than solved by, only pointing fingers at one side.

That is true, happy to point at both sides.  But I also believe that the skew is exacerbated by pretending that both sides are "equally" at fault on points where they aren't, and only one side is responsible on issues where it's both.

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I don't know what you do in your private life, but sometimes I wish you would use your reasoning powers to criticize the system rather than just one pernicious element in the system.

That's a hard request for me.  One of my strongest tendencies is to be pro Rule of Law and anti-corruption.  It's my view that virtually all of our human rights successes and improvements in quality of life are largely the result of our conviction to the Rule of Law (and not in spite of it as modern leftist theory states).  I take any one undermining the rule of law as a direct assault on that progress  and a commitment on their part to try and oppress everyone.

That said, there are a lot of topics where I'm happy to point out systematic issues.  Part of the rule of law is the ongoing effort to identify such places and work on real solutions, but that can't be based solely on the view of the aggrieved it has to be based on reality and everyone's best interests.  In other words, the right answer is improvement not destroying most institutions in this country, in other countries answers will vary.

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Your ratio of critiques of right-wing stuff vs left-wing at least on these boards is something like 1:50 if I'm being generous.

Lot of truth there, but I think that's also reflective of who's often posting and how far out there the positions they take are.  Some of it is just online board bias that comes into a bunch of what people find interesting.

I mean, we've had a bunch of abortion threads, I'm generally pro choice, and yet I've been on "both" sides of those threads depending on context (e.g., picked a fight with Pete on definition of life; but also took on the whole Board for days on why I thought Planned Parenthood's accounting tricks shouldn't be allowed (both in context of receiving federal funds, and in context of the controversy over receiving payment for fetal parts).

I often caveat things with left positions that get ignored, like for example in the massive Benghazi thread, I repeated almost at every turn that the decision of whether to act or not was purely an executive decision and no one should be questioning Obama on that (the coverup after, not the same story).

It's also in part, because I've been convinced for 20 years that the media has a deliberate bias and that you can't trust them to be accurate when it's impacted, and that situations gotten even worse in the last 10 years.  That puts me on the "opposite" side of the media and whatever they are claiming (without support), ignoring (because it's not convenient) or misrepresenting.  The fact that in those debates I appear to be an "arch conservative" (and get called out for being a Trump fanboi) should actually tell you a lot about the bias.

I support the rule of law, which to the left is often in the way of what they want.  Which means while I can fully support the goal (e.g., gay marriage) I can and do reject the way it get's implemented through extralegal methods and bad process.

I'm bitterly opposed to manipulation of language, ala big brother, which is almost the new religion of the hard left.

On the other side?  I'm absolutely opposed to any religious based laws that can not be justified by secular morality as well (but the freedom from religion guys are jerks).  Absolutist on civil rights (which used to be THE liberal position).  Intolerance to racists, and credos that spread hate (and I mean actual hate, not "liberals defined it as hate for political purposes), though I can't condone stripping them of their civil rights.  Hugely pro environment, which is why I ALWAYS wear my realist hat and bitterly oppose leftist nonsense that hurts the environment.

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But I do like your critiques, so don't think I'm disturbed that you point out the stuff you do.

Thank you, I try to spread as much logical reasoning as I can, and pick apart bad logic when I see it.  But we don't all have the same axioms which makes it hard to agree.  My biggest irritation is that the world seems to be rejecting the idea that reasonable people can disagree in favor of the interpretation that the definition of reasonable is that you agree on everything. 

This is one of those cases, where the left holds this as a mainstream philosophy (e.g., AOC's tweets often expressly support this and get massive play), and the right generally holds this as a fringe philosophy (e.g. not all Christians believe this but when they do they tend to be in a specific group that will brook no contradiction).

I have to freely admit, that it's been my experience that we all get less logical and more emotional in connection with Presidential elections, and after the last two the recovery period has been non-existent or greatly reduced.

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Yes, the behaviors of the left have shifted lately, although perhaps that's not really a suprise since progressivism can probably be linked to openness.

Don't know what that means, can you clarify?  I don't see anything about progressivism that I would define as "openness" it's almost like a gross warping of the original liberal philosophy where they took every core belief and pushed it out the opposite side into a twilight zone version.

I mean it was a great liberal victory to prove that separate was not equal, and it's the progressive twilight zone vision that only separate and by force to be equal is a continuation of that.

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But consider that the best way to achieve a slingshot effect is to remain entrenched: when there's a force pushing, and the counter to that is to resist with all one's might, it will greatly increase the torque until when release happens it will go far further than it would have without resistance. On a human level this is how the ecosystem will always work.

I know.  I thought about this specifically the other day, am I compromising my ability to be convincing by prioritizing the satisfaction I get from challenging nonsense? 

I honestly believe so, yet, I don't see any better result by leaving manipulation unchallenged as the baseline for conversation.  I took that tack earlier this year and I didn't like the results, and I decided leaving the floor unchallenged was an even less good result and made me feel bad on top of it.

It's quite the puzzle, but we can't even get a basic agreement that unsubstantiated rumors are not news, how exactly are we supposed to move forward?  It's not that we don't have common axioms anymore, it's that we no longer even have common realities.

rightleft22

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #80 on: September 10, 2019, 12:54:58 PM »
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Yes, the behaviors of the left have shifted lately, although perhaps that's not really a surprise since progressivism can probably be linked to openness.

Would also be interested in a clarification.
I feel the left has shifted as well but not towards openness. The intention may be towards openness however the methods like silencing opposing views because they "trigger" is not openness.

I also feel that the right has shifted, also not towards openness. If someone wants to tackle that

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #81 on: September 10, 2019, 01:09:53 PM »
That's a hard request for me.  One of my strongest tendencies is to be pro Rule of Law and anti-corruption.

I'm always reminded of D&D in cases where this sort of thing comes up. I'm not the most avid player ever but I've had my time logged in (I prefer the PC games), and one issue that can crop up in a party is the presence of a lawful-good character who ends up at odds with the rest of the party, even those who are neutral good. There is good case to be made about whether rule of law is equivalent to seeking good rule of law in most cases. In a lawful-good society we can surely imagine a paladin doing well, and if a law is ill-conceived the good intention will move to change the law. But now imagine a paladin in a lawful-neutral territory (or even worse lawful-evil), where there is no general will to move law in the direction of the good. Having to obey laws that are in fact not oriented towards the good would probably be just as incompatible with a paladin as having to deal with chaotic-good mayhem. The difficulty is when a paladin's belief in law becomes a prevailing force in a non-good environment and ends up reinforcing the system of law at the expense of the good. I hope this analogy helped...

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The fact that in those debates I appear to be an "arch conservative" (and get called out for being a Trump fanboi) should actually tell you a lot about the bias.

You're probably seen as being a conservative because you are one  ;)  But where that can get confusing is to assume that means you're an arch-Republican. If anything this slippy area makes it more difficult (but more onerous) to make sure your points are understood as being the one and not the other, assuming that's your intention.

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My biggest irritation is that the world seems to be rejecting the idea that reasonable people can disagree in favor of the interpretation that the definition of reasonable is that you agree on everything.

Agree.

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Yes, the behaviors of the left have shifted lately, although perhaps that's not really a suprise since progressivism can probably be linked to openness.

Don't know what that means, can you clarify?  I don't see anything about progressivism that I would define as "openness" it's almost like a gross warping of the original liberal philosophy where they took every core belief and pushed it out the opposite side into a twilight zone version.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Openness_to_experience

As I understand it this trait tracks with left-leaning tendencies (whether biological or learned), while order and hierarchical structure (i.e. rule of law) tracks more with right-leaning tendencies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Five_Aspect_Scales

Basically it means that it's probably to be expected that left-leaning people will shift around in views and manner much more quickly than right-leaning people will, because they're not tied down to a historical idea of how they should behave or think. Like any other trait, this can be a good thing or a bad thing.

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I know.  I thought about this specifically the other day, am I compromising my ability to be convincing by prioritizing the satisfaction I get from challenging nonsense?

I honestly believe so, yet, I don't see any better result by leaving manipulation unchallenged as the baseline for conversation.  I took that tack earlier this year and I didn't like the results, and I decided leaving the floor unchallenged was an even less good result and made me feel bad on top of it.

I don't think this must be a binary either-or. In my view the best way to actually combat nonsense is to try to show you're observing the same problems and are on the same side, but have a different idea about good solutions. In cases where the other side really has pinpointed a problem but has a very bad way of engaging with it one can find a way to meet at the source of the problem and diverge in proposed method of dealing with it. It is an issue, though, when the so-called problem isn't real and is a fig leaf for a political power grab. Surely we can't actually agree on even the problem then, right? But in those cases there actually still is a common problem: the fact that politics is currently structured to reward power grabs. And that is my point to you: if rule of law and structure is a great good, then bad structure must therefore be among the worst bad things, right? Because a rule of law that is lawful-evil (for instance) will not only fail to produce good but it will also convince people that law is bad. That is my point, and why fighting for law first may often derail that goal.

ETA - it may not seem like it, but I, too, highly value order and structure. However as I see it the force of deconstructing bad structure needs to be just as great as the desire for structure itself if this goal is to ever amount to anything.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 01:15:09 PM by Fenring »

Wayward Son

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #82 on: September 10, 2019, 01:37:00 PM »

You never claim it was proven, just that it has to be believed. Jesus.

I never said it has to be believed.  I only said that I believed it, based on what I believe I know about Trump and the news media.  That between a man who lies regularly, has shown disdain for the law, and has asked people to commit illegal acts for him, and a news media which lives on its reputation to tell facts and which has processes to try to ensure what it prints is true, I tend to believe the latter.  I never said the news media was infallible, or that everyone has to believe this report.  I just wanted to make sure everyone understood that something that is not proven to be true is not necessarily false, and that you actually need proof to prove something is false.

Now why don't you answer the more interesting question (at least to me): if this report is verified by the notes of those at the meeting that Trump has actually promised to pardon anyone who broke the law in order to get the wall built, what does that do to the claims of those who said the report was false and "fake news"? :)

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #83 on: September 10, 2019, 01:51:38 PM »
I'm always reminded of D&D in cases where this sort of thing comes up. I'm not the most avid player ever but I've had my time logged in (I prefer the PC games), and one issue that can crop up in a party is the presence of a lawful-good character who ends up at odds with the rest of the party, even those who are neutral good. There is good case to be made about whether rule of law is equivalent to seeking good rule of law in most cases. In a lawful-good society we can surely imagine a paladin doing well, and if a law is ill-conceived the good intention will move to change the law. But now imagine a paladin in a lawful-neutral territory (or even worse lawful-evil), where there is no general will to move law in the direction of the good. Having to obey laws that are in fact not oriented towards the good would probably be just as incompatible with a paladin as having to deal with chaotic-good mayhem. The difficulty is when a paladin's belief in law becomes a prevailing force in a non-good environment and ends up reinforcing the system of law at the expense of the good. I hope this analogy helped...

That's because you are misconstruing the "law" that applies to the Paladin.  They are holy knights and only accountable to the law as applied through their deity, ergo, they are not bound by unjust laws of man and rightly oppose them and the "tyrants" that impose them.  It's interesting too, cause there's some good books with Paladin characters and they often end up looking more Neutral good than LG.

NG by the way is purer good than LG.  It's pretty much the absolutist on the ends justifies the means philosophy.  Nothing else matters to the NG character.

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The fact that in those debates I appear to be an "arch conservative" (and get called out for being a Trump fanboi) should actually tell you a lot about the bias.

You're probably seen as being a conservative because you are one  ;)

Again, on some things.  I live in a pretty blue state and we're far more liberal than 90% of our Democratic neighbors, though they engage in a ton more virtue signally.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Openness_to_experience

As I understand it this trait tracks with left-leaning tendencies (whether biological or learned), while order and hierarchical structure (i.e. rule of law) tracks more with right-leaning tendencies.

That's not actually what the link says though.  Low "openness to experience" is correlated to a bunch of stuff, only one of which is religious but not economic conservatism.  Low openness is correlated to BOTH right wing and left wing authoritarianism.  That's pretty much the defining characteristic of the "progressive" movement, their enemies are inherently wrong and should not be allowed to be wrong.

Interesting read, I'd think you would be surprised at how far on the open side I'd probably score.  Definitely higher than my leftwing neighbors who ALL have hang ups about race, sexuality and homosexuality.  Oddly, my wife was talking with a friend who is on the religious conservative branch last weekend, who told my wife she had tried the largest church in town (which 90% of the left wingers in town attend), and they wouldn't go back because they were preaching anti-gay sermons. 

Now, I'm not sure why that's the case.  Possibly the point of going to church to them is to be seen, and they don't actually listen to the sermon (and the place really is one of those kinds of churches, stadium seating and gift shop), but just one more plank in the local anecdotal reality that those engaging in the most virtue singling often don't have the most virtue.

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Basically it means that it's probably to be expected that left-leaning people will shift around in views and manner much more quickly than right-leaning people will, because they're not tied down to a historical idea of how they should behave or think. Like any other trait, this can be a good thing or a bad thing.

I actually this is why it's a bad idea to cite to something like this.  What you just said above is not likely to be the actual interpretation from what you linked.  In fact, the curve ordinarily distributed, with most people largely being in the middle, that means that most people on each side are not strongly correllated with the metric and that it most likely tells you nothing about "right-leaning" and "left leaning" preferences.

It's also kind of a stretch to pretend that "conservative" and "liberal" actually mean something fixed about "historical" other than a wishful sort of misinformed fondness or condemnation of the "past" that has less basis in the past than we'd like to believe.

I mean how would you rate demanding the 90% tax rates that predated Reagan?  Conservative, because its from the past or liberal?  Our politics are subject to a massive and largely nonsensical "alignment" where by the parties take opposite positions on issues just to oppose each other, without any real attempt to reconcile.  I mean I've pointed it out before, how can a party be for the Green new deal and for union labor (largely in manufacturing plants that will be put out of business)?  How can a party be both for the betterment of minorities and opposed to things like charter schools in districts that have failed minority children for decades?

Is it really because one side or the other is "open" to new experiences (wouldn't that dictate the left was for charter schools)?

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I don't think this must be a binary either-or. In my view the best way to actually combat nonsense is to try to show you're observing the same problems and are on the same side, but have a different idea about good solutions.

If we were arguing issues I would agree.  We've had some great in depth discussions on them.

But these days were not arguing issues, those arguments end with believing the other side can only believe their positions because they are evil or racists, or some other ists, and that "we" don't have to confront their actual arguments because they come from a bad place and we can't let our certainty of self come into question.

Instead we're arguing about reality.  Did something -that none of us have experience of- happen or not happen, and what does that require in a virtue signalling world we do about lining up on the right side.  That's 100% what this thread is.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 01:54:36 PM by Seriati »

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #84 on: September 10, 2019, 03:49:03 PM »
Apologies in advance to everyone for a long post here...

That's because you are misconstruing the "law" that applies to the Paladin.  They are holy knights and only accountable to the law as applied through their deity, ergo, they are not bound by unjust laws of man and rightly oppose them and the "tyrants" that impose them.

The relativity of 'which law' one is following is sort of at the core of my position. One needs to define which law we're talking about (e.g. natural law, or God's law, or civil law, or whatever else) on a philosophical level. I am mostly, for now, talking about the idea of holding up the laws of the land, which in most D&D campaigns a Paladin will do, even if the town is neutral. It would be rare for a Paladin of any stripe to walk into an average town and say "screw their laws, they're trash anyhow", which is much more of a chaotic good thing to do even though I know what you're saying. A 'lawful' person will avoid jaywalking even on a quiet street at night, on principle. It's not even a question of 'which law' they're following. The D&D example may not perfectly map onto this, although it often does.

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Low "openness to experience" is correlated to a bunch of stuff, only one of which is religious but not economic conservatism.  Low openness is correlated to BOTH right wing and left wing authoritarianism.  That's pretty much the defining characteristic of the "progressive" movement, their enemies are inherently wrong and should not be allowed to be wrong.

Yes, extremism at both ends can end up resembling each other, but I think it might be easy to misconstrue "authoritarianism" as meaning only dictatorial; I believe it can also mean simply the tendency to want to obey or exist within an authority-based structure, which doesn't have to imply a pathological government. Like, 'everyone knows their place and there is a set structure' is an authoritarian system, whereas 'no one tells anyone else what to do' is less authoritarian, neither of which is related to whether the structure (or lack thereof) is pernicious or healthy.

My friend is into reading about genetics studies and he at any rate seems to be of the belief that there is probably a genetic component to people ending up on the right or the left. Which I guess agrees with Gilbert and Sullivan (that every boy and every girl that's born into the world alive, is either a little liberal, or else a little conservative. Fa la la la...). The idea is that some people seem naturally to prefer to exist in a structured environment and to want others to adhere to that structure, while others feel oppressed by structure or else at least challenge its details.

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Interesting read, I'd think you would be surprised at how far on the open side I'd probably score.

One caveat, is that I don't believe it should be understood that scoring low on 'openness' implies bigotry or anything like that. It just means that the temperamental disposition is less 'anything goes' or perhaps 'don't judge' and more 'no, some things are stupid!'

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In fact, the curve ordinarily distributed, with most people largely being in the middle, that means that most people on each side are not strongly correllated with the metric and that it most likely tells you nothing about "right-leaning" and "left leaning" preferences.

It was just to let you know what term of I referencing. I didn't study the Wiki article in detail, and it's not a psychology site (even though its curation is often ok). I doubt it would be that controversial in psychology circles to argue that people seem to fall under different temperaments by nature, although I don't know the validity of left vs right as being the two 'sides' to it. But it does seem to work out that way, and across national lines and even in very different cultures. The 'fanatic' type is something special and can exist in right or left leaning ways, and actually I think those disposed towards fanaticism are probably more like each other on each extreme than the centrally clustered data point people would be in terms of temperaments. So as you say, extreme leftists will be equally as dogmatic and intolerant as extreme right-wingers in most important ways. But I'm talking for the most part about the middle. What I think you're talking about is that the extremists have hijacked the middle, and in turn my answer is that this is an artifact of the political system. Hence why I call this a systemic problem.

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It's also kind of a stretch to pretend that "conservative" and "liberal" actually mean something fixed about "historical" other than a wishful sort of misinformed fondness or condemnation of the "past" that has less basis in the past than we'd like to believe.

It's also pretty uncontroversial that the 'left vs right' debate has been going on for like 150 years in literary, journalistic, and political philosophy circles, and that one of the key elements in this debate has always been adherence to historic wisdom versus 'people who are dead are dumb'. C.S. Lewis wrote about chronological snobbery, Chesterton about similar issues; the political science debate between Straussians and others seems to me often centered on whether classics should be seriously studied as a primary launching point, versus current thinkers. Even economics seems to be split down the middle between those who value the wisdom of past economical wisdom (the Adam Smith references abound) versus people who reject wholesale that past wisdom is worth anything.

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I mean how would you rate demanding the 90% tax rates that predated Reagan?  Conservative, because its from the past or liberal?

I 100%, COMPLETELY agree with you. I have had this exact debate with both political scientists and economics people, and have actually taken turns on both sides on the issue myself. If one deconstructs individual items from the past it becomes difficult or impossible to evaluate what is 'traditional' or 'from before' or 'what is new', and especially to find consistency there. However, this seems to me to run past the basic issue, which is that the idea of adherence to past wisdom seems at least as important to many as what that actual wisdom is. I don't mean to imply that this is just a delusion; I'll push Plato any day before modern writers. However my point is that the temperamental disposition may well largely determine which sorts of reasoning sounds more right; and there is good reasoning on both sides (i.e. 'study the past' versus 'discover the future').


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But these days were not arguing issues, those arguments end with believing the other side can only believe their positions because they are evil or racists, or some other ists, and that "we" don't have to confront their actual arguments because they come from a bad place and we can't let our certainty of self come into question.

Yes, BUT - there is still fundamentally a root 'problem' both sides are grappling with. The question is where the split occurs and how far back the problem goes. If the left vs right political rift is a symptom, let's say, then we might point towards the system. But aha - the system is a result of freedoms, and power interests using the system to have their way: freedom, right? Then we have to define freedom: is it refraining from interfering with someone's intentions? Is it unlimited licence? Is it the room to maneuver within a carefully constructed system that does have parameters? Perhaps the snag lies here. In the so-called free will vs determinism debate we sometimes see arguments that take the peculiar form that things can be 100% deterministic and yet people can have 100% free will. Arghhhhh! How can that be, we ask? Well it can be, if 'freedom' has a meaning that's defined very carefully. Anyhow, this is just an example of how to backtrace the root problem, although in fact I do think part of the serious disagreement lies in the definition of freedom in the philosophical sense.

This can get hairy, but imagine for those people you think want to change definitions, mind control everyone, and grab power through language and changing narratives: why would ordinary people want to do that? We could, for example, go to Nietzsche on that one: because it's the only way they can exercise control, and it's easier to revalue values than win over people seemingly stronger than you. Or at least this is a paradigm we might consider: what forces, seemingly impenetrable, would cause a large swathe of people to think they must seize the reigns some other way than through the system? It's something to consider, and part of why I suggested that a bad system of order undermines the value of order for people.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 03:51:58 PM by Fenring »

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #85 on: September 10, 2019, 04:08:01 PM »
Apologies in advance to everyone for a long post here...

That's because you are misconstruing the "law" that applies to the Paladin.  They are holy knights and only accountable to the law as applied through their deity, ergo, they are not bound by unjust laws of man and rightly oppose them and the "tyrants" that impose them.

The relativity of 'which law' one is following is sort of at the core of my position. One needs to define which law we're talking about (e.g. natural law, or God's law, or civil law, or whatever else) on a philosophical level. I am mostly, for now, talking about the idea of holding up the laws of the land, which in most D&D campaigns a Paladin will do, even if the town is neutral. It would be rare for a Paladin of any stripe to walk into an average town and say "screw their laws, they're trash anyhow", which is much more of a chaotic good thing to do even though I know what you're saying. A 'lawful' person will avoid jaywalking even on a quiet street at night, on principle. It's not even a question of 'which law' they're following. The D&D example may not perfectly map onto this, although it often does.

Paladins are not moral relativists in a fantasy world where they are serving actual deities.  Yes, in any random town, they are going to follow the laws, which "in any random town" are written by good people for good purposes.  But is the Paladin going to let the random person whip the child in the street for touching his horse, just because it's legal in the town?  Not a chance, they'd be ignoring the law that their deity laid down for them to do so.  You can create conflicts for a Paladin between law and good, but they really only come up when you're forced to make a choice between two "good" or two "not good" alternatives (do you save the princess as required by law or the boatload of orphans?  Do you let a person condemned to death by a just process die, even if you're convinced they are innocent).   

Of course that's neither hear nor there, cause we live in a world with moral ambiguity.

JoshuaD

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #86 on: September 10, 2019, 04:28:21 PM »
Of course that's neither hear nor there, cause we live in a world with moral ambiguity.

What exactly do you mean by this? I'm not sure if you're saying:

1. "we live in a world where people cannot agree on what is moral";
2. "we live in a world where what's moral is generally unclear.";
3. "we live in a world where there is no actual moral truth"; or
4. something else entirely.


Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #87 on: September 10, 2019, 04:34:57 PM »
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Low "openness to experience" is correlated to a bunch of stuff, only one of which is religious but not economic conservatism.  Low openness is correlated to BOTH right wing and left wing authoritarianism.  That's pretty much the defining characteristic of the "progressive" movement, their enemies are inherently wrong and should not be allowed to be wrong.

Yes, extremism at both ends can end up resembling each other, but I think it might be easy to misconstrue "authoritarianism" as meaning only dictatorial; I believe it can also mean simply the tendency to want to obey or exist within an authority-based structure, which doesn't have to imply a pathological government.

That's my point though, you're making a lot of "common assumptions" about what terms mean there that are more likely than not being used in a specific academic context and meaning.  Extrapolating beyond what is expressly said, is unfortunately, more likely to introduce error than clarity.

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The idea is that some people seem naturally to prefer to exist in a structured environment and to want others to adhere to that structure, while others feel oppressed by structure or else at least challenge its details.

But again, that's not strongly correllated to left and right as you seem to what to imply.  Leftists are responsible for even more atrocity that the right wing.

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It was just to let you know what term of I referencing. I didn't study the Wiki article in detail, and it's not a psychology site (even though its curation is often ok). I doubt it would be that controversial in psychology circles to argue that people seem to fall under different temperaments by nature, although I don't know the validity of left vs right as being the two 'sides' to it. But it does seem to work out that way, and across national lines and even in very different cultures.

It doesn't though.  They've done the cross cultural analysis (some of it is even referenced in the Wiki), and it's not as predictable as you are implying.  It feels like you've internalized this in a pop  pyschology kind of way and are now projecting into connections that you want to believe are true. 

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But I'm talking for the most part about the middle. What I think you're talking about is that the extremists have hijacked the middle, and in turn my answer is that this is an artifact of the political system. Hence why I call this a systemic problem.

I think the middle has become more fanatic. Not sure it's been hijacked by fanatics, more like by the media and power seekers (who I tend to believe are always cynical).

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It's also pretty uncontroversial that the 'left vs right' debate has been going on for like 150 years in literary, journalistic, and political philosophy circles, and that one of the key elements in this debate has always been adherence to historic wisdom versus 'people who are dead are dumb'. C.S. Lewis wrote about chronological snobbery, Chesterton about similar issues; the political science debate between Straussians and others seems to me often centered on whether classics should be seriously studied as a primary launching point, versus current thinkers. Even economics seems to be split down the middle between those who value the wisdom of past economical wisdom (the Adam Smith references abound) versus people who reject wholesale that past wisdom is worth anything.

You think that's what's going on?  It's not.  This is not an argument about whether the "objective" past has meaning in the present or whether new ideas should be fleshed out.  It's an argument about redefining the past, to recycle old ideas that have failed in the guise of new never been tried ideas.  It's an argument about redefining success as failure to keep a grievance machine that can never be satisfied churning.

I'd love it if we were talking about whether we were doomed to repeat the past if we tried something, rather than the current debates about how the past was really different and completely overrides all possible arguments.

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However, this seems to me to run past the basic issue, which is that the idea of adherence to past wisdom seems at least as important to many as what that actual wisdom is. I don't mean to imply that this is just a delusion; I'll push Plato any day before modern writers. However my point is that the temperamental disposition may well largely determine which sorts of reasoning sounds more right; and there is good reasoning on both sides (i.e. 'study the past' versus 'discover the future').

When it's "rewrite the past" it doesn't work.  It's open and blatant, we have the times 1619 project openly running now.  We have UBI and "Democratic Socialism" and "communism" has never been tried.  We have the US as the great environmental villian (and no mention of its reform and actual role as the great eco activist).  We have a "rape culture" that requires constant correction (never mind that we're pretty much the most equal society on the planet, or generally largely indistinguishable from the country that's adopted most of our cultural advances and gets the title at any point in time). 

It's no more honest to write history to make someone the permanent bad guy than it was to ignore everything bad they did (which we honestly never did).  But it's make it impossible to have a rationale discussion about whose "conservative" in the literal sense.


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In the so-called free will vs determinism debate we sometimes see arguments that take the peculiar form that things can be 100% deterministic and yet people can have 100% free will. Arghhhhh!

That's easy to resolve if time isn't real.

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This can get hairy, but imagine for those people you think want to change definitions, mind control everyone, and grab power through language and changing narratives: why would ordinary people want to do that?

They don't why do you think there's a constant backlash against "PC Culture" or people that complain about having to use pronouns of choice.  Heck is large part of why Trump got elected.

They don't want it but they will be ruthlessly intimidated into compliance.  Don't call a student "xe" better be prepared to defend your job, even if you have a union job - couldn't fire union teachers for violating parental rights when it was conservative values on the line, but absolutely possible when they violate the ever changing rules of victimhood.

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Or at least this is a paradigm we might consider: what forces, seemingly impenetrable, would cause a large swathe of people to think they must seize the reigns some other way than through the system? It's something to consider, and part of why I suggested that a bad system of order undermines the value of order for people.

Or it could just be lies.  Real wages up, unemployment lowest ever, consumer spending and confidence up.  Yet people still are convinced they have to save the economy by reversing all the policies that got us there.  Why?  To save domestic spending - not a chance Trump hasn't cut anything.  To cut spending?  Nope - all the Green Dream candidates are proposing MASSIVE spending increases.  Just seems to be an envy based issue, not enough sticking it to the rich.

Big problem just 2 years ago for Dems on the border.  Vast majority, even among Democrats, want the borders enforced and illegals deported.  What to do, what to do?  Oh yeah, label it racism, and issue an alter call.  Either jump on our side (and pretend you always believed that - ie rewrite your own history) or you're a racist too.

Past successes to undermine?  Title IX revolutionized equality between men and women by forcing colleges to open sports opportunities to women.   Huge success.  So what now, well male to female identifying athletes (in many cases without any surgery) are increasingly taking the top spots in the female only competitions.  So, it was unfair to expect biological women to compete with biological men, but it's unfair not to let biological men that identify as women compete with biological women?  We can't allow ourselves to even consider how to handle the situation with fairness and equity to all, because that would be disaffirming and make us bad people (and if a biological woman complains the hammer really comes down).
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 04:38:52 PM by Seriati »

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #88 on: September 10, 2019, 04:38:02 PM »
Of course that's neither hear nor there, cause we live in a world with moral ambiguity.

What exactly do you mean by this? I'm not sure if you're saying:

1. "we live in a world where people cannot agree on what is moral";
2. "we live in a world where what's moral is generally unclear.";
3. "we live in a world where there is no actual moral truth"; or
4. something else entirely.

I think it was clear.  A Dungeons and Dragons Paladin has a specific deity, and the player has a known certainty of the moral right or wrong that doesn't exist in a real world where we can't have the same kind of access to what could be a binding set of absolute moral principals, because we are neither omniscent or aware of the rules of the game.  We just have to do the best we can.

Essentially, you can only learn so much from the Paladin example because it is a fantasy and not real world.

JoshuaD

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #89 on: September 10, 2019, 04:58:42 PM »
I'm not even sure that that's true: the morality of a D&D-based fantasy world is about as ambiguous as ours.

A Paladin of God X might have a clearly defined ethic, and that ethic might even be clearly and verifiably communicated to that god's followers. 

But that ethic exists in the frame of some more fundamental moral fabric than the pantheon god's ethic, and the "god" is only making an assertion of his belief or desire regarding how people should act. None of those pantheon-gods are in the position of actually defining or clearly understanding perfect morality.  In these systems, the "gods" are more like higher beings.

Said simply, an evil anti-paladin is still evil, even if he follows the dictates of Takhisis or Gruumsh perfectly. Similarly, a paladin of a good god that has some flaws (like Garl Glittergold or Reorx) still has flaws in his ethic, making it less than the perfect good.

I know Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, and Greyhawk all accept the implied moral fabric that supersedes the views of their pantheon, even if they never specifically name it or speak about it.  Each of the Panthon's God's views are evaluated against this implied framework and none of them define it or can ignore it.  Sargonnas is evil and Theros, despite his devotion to Sargas, discovers that.  Sargonnas is a God, and he is still judged against the more fundamental moral framework.

In fact, each of those fantasy worlds implicitly accept the real world's moral reality. They add some higher beings, but in the end, every character and being in those series is still participating in the framework of Good and Evil of this world.

I don't think I've ever seen a fantasy setting where Good wasn't good, and Evil wasn't evil.  I don't think I've ever seen a fantasy work where murder and rape were of the same class (and gave the same class of consequences) as love and kindness. I find it difficult to even imagine such a world, and I can't imagine it will provide any stories worth writing.

----

But more importantly, I'm curious about your assertion that "we live in a world with moral ambiguity". It's not clear to me what your views are as to the existence of a moral reality in our world, and the extent to which you believe we can know that reality.  Your statement was clear insofar as it was a criticism of the D&D analogy, but it's not clear to me what your actual thoughts are on the topic and I'm curious.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 05:09:27 PM by JoshuaD »

D.W.

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #90 on: September 10, 2019, 06:35:53 PM »
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But more importantly, I'm curious about your assertion that "we live in a world with moral ambiguity". It's not clear to me what your views are as to the existence of a moral reality in our world, and the extent to which you believe we can know that reality.  Your statement was clear insofar as it was a criticism of the D&D analogy, but it's not clear to me what your actual thoughts are on the topic and I'm curious.
I've never seen anyone smite evil with results that were unambiguous.  I've never seen a circle of protection actually hedge out someone. In D&D there IS a moral reality, and you CAN know it.  I think that's part of the point.

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #91 on: September 11, 2019, 10:36:04 AM »
I'm not even sure that that's true: the morality of a D&D-based fantasy world is about as ambiguous as ours.

Is it really though?  All classic versions had you write your "good" or "evil" alignment on a piece of paper, and had it in the description of everyone with which you interact.  I never find any real people to be so simply defined.  Most people believe they're doing good, I mean honestly, would anyone even think they had a use for a "protection from good" spell?  That would mean they define themselves as evil and recognize that it would be objectively good to stop them or hurt them.  In our world, if there's an objective truth, such a spell might clearly define it for everyone, and if good/evil is subjective, everyone would learn protection from evil confident in the knowledge that it would protect based on our own perception of our goodness against the evil of others (who think they re good).

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A Paladin of God X might have a clearly defined ethic, and that ethic might even be clearly and verifiably communicated to that god's followers.

Honestly, if you don't have a clearly defined ethic you probably shouldn't even allow Paladins in the campaign.  In my experience they are the single worst played class of all time (with the exception of bards - especially classic bards).

But and it's a big one, the concern you are raising misses the point.  There can be no real argument that a Paladin is bound to secular laws that conflict with the laws of the higher power they serve.  I mean, if the next kingdom over is evil and the king passes a law banning Paladins are they really in trouble if they go into the kingdom?  Even to fight against it?  It's easily possible to create secular law conflicts, a lot harder to create them in a heirarchy.

Now you could imagine if a Paladin were to serve multiple deities (I like Paxanarrion? for that one) that the deities themselves could put conflicting duties on the paladin, but it'd take a really creative DM to manage that, particularly in connection with  LG pantheon, and I would tend to think that if such a conflict were possible then Paladins would never be able to serve multiple gods.  You certainly see this conflict played out in clerics of the same pantheon.

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But that ethic exists in the frame of some more fundamental moral fabric than the pantheon god's ethic, and the "god" is only making an assertion of his belief or desire regarding how people should act. None of those pantheon-gods are in the position of actually defining or clearly understanding perfect morality.  In these systems, the "gods" are more like higher beings.

So what.  Regardless of whether the gods understand the higher truth (which is an assumption that is definitional for a fantasy universe) they are still the source of the powers of the Paladin and the morality that they have to follow. It's literally compliance with that god's or pantheon's understanding that the Paladin is held to obey to maintain their power.  I suspect moral simplicity is the reason that only LG paladins existed in classic (and the I believe erroneous assumption that LG's are the "true good guys). 

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Said simply, an evil anti-paladin is still evil, even if he follows the dictates of Takhisis or Gruumsh perfectly. Similarly, a paladin of a good god that has some flaws (like Garl Glittergold or Reorx) still has flaws in his ethic, making it less than the perfect good.

I agree, which as I noted above is why our world and the fantasy world are not great analogies.  Even the evil doers believe they are following a greater good in our world.

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I know Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, and Greyhawk all accept the implied moral fabric that supersedes the views of their pantheon, even if they never specifically name it or speak about it.  Each of the Panthon's God's views are evaluated against this implied framework and none of them define it or can ignore it.  Sargonnas is evil and Theros, despite his devotion to Sargas, discovers that.  Sargonnas is a God, and he is still judged against the more fundamental moral framework.

Dragonlance was exceptionally quirky, and if I recall they didn't really have paladins.  Didn't read everything, but I thought the knights of Tahkesis (which were "permitted" to violate the fundamental moral law of the Dragonlance universe by both being evil and not turning on themselves), were the major entry into the paladin/anti-paladin issue.  That universe probably had the most defined moral systems, and the most silly interpretations and work arounds.

Forgotten Realms, obviouslly didn't read everything, but it's hard to read the Caderlly series and not take away that there are large agreements and cooperation in the good aligned pantheon.  I always wondered how some hard core religious fanatics would take that series, would they find it an echo of their own faith journeys or blasphemy.

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In fact, each of those fantasy worlds implicitly accept the real world's moral reality. They add some higher beings, but in the end, every character and being in those series is still participating in the framework of Good and Evil of this world.

Yes, that's what we find entertaining.  But in the D&D worlds the moral confusion isn't there unless you choose to add it yourself, compare that to GoT, where arguably everyone is evil or good, or just complex depending on your point of view.  Where there is no defined set of rules saying person x is good and person y is bad (or at least every time you think there is you get thrown for a loop because you're not sharing in the knowledge of those rules).

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I don't think I've ever seen a fantasy setting where Good wasn't good, and Evil wasn't evil.  I don't think I've ever seen a fantasy work where murder and rape were of the same class (and gave the same class of consequences) as love and kindness. I find it difficult to even imagine such a world, and I can't imagine it will provide any stories worth writing.

Not sure how you get here from what I said.  The fact that paladins take their ethics from their deity doesn't imply any of that in a fantasy world, not where the deities that have paladins are all generally LG aligned (I think there are some that are NG as well).  I've not seen a single such write up that "confuses" their in game morality by effectively asserting god x is really evil but its followers are all LG and can only use their powers for LG purposes.  It's just definitional.  I mean that was kind of the plot of Conan the Destroyer, but that was more about a people deceived by their ruler (who was herself probably deceived, but will never know for sure because of Conan), rather than a god that was actually a direct player in the universe and deceiving everyone.

As to fantasy works, they are kind of out there, but most fantasy plays on the exploration of morality so what you get may not be exactly what you're looking for.  Some of them flip the "alignment" but not the morality - e.g. Villians by Necessity, where the near complete triumph of good is causing the world to fall into stasis and eventually be destroyed, and the heroes trying to save the world are the last truly evil people around.  But like I said, it's only their alignments that have switched, it's still clear they are the "good guys."

Another example, granted in space opera, is the morality of Darth Vader.  It's painful to watch the prequels, but if you pay attention I think you can craft a clear story not of a fall into evil, but rather a conviction that only by evil is he doing the right thing.  It explains why Vader is redeemable, why Luke could feel the good and the conflict in him, and ultimately why he seemed large loyal to the other Sith Lord rather than constantly plotting to replace him.  At the root, his was the evil of good intentions terribly applied.

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But more importantly, I'm curious about your assertion that "we live in a world with moral ambiguity".

I'll agree I shouldn't have used that term, it's loaded.  All I was trying to convey there was that a D&D world has a morality (or not) by definition there's never a real question - though a DM may change the reality at any time.  In our world it's ambigious, there could be an absolute morality, heck there can even be several, but it appears that if that is the case that we've never been expressly bound to it.  Whether you believe it's been revealed and we were granted free will, or that it's always been for us to reveal, doesn't matter, it's clear we were not locked into obeying it at least in this life.  It's been left to faith.  And that means it's ambiguous as to what the rules are, and we have to apply our own decisions to it in a way that a definitional world doesn't share.  For example, it's abosulutely in the rules that a Paladin is punished for falling away from their moral prescripts, they lose powers have to take on penances, that's exactly the sort of consequence from above that would in fact reveal a morality in our world and that isn't provided.

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It's not clear to me what your views are as to the existence of a moral reality in our world, and the extent to which you believe we can know that reality.  Your statement was clear insofar as it was a criticism of the D&D analogy, but it's not clear to me what your actual thoughts are on the topic and I'm curious.

While I can't say for sure (which is the point of faith) that an absolute moral reality exists, its my belief that if it does and if we were created in part to choose to follow it, it has to be within our ability to discern it or come to believe its true.  Ergo, even through purely secular means, we would be able to come to conclusions about it.  If you have faith, it may give you a leg up, if you listen to your faith with honesty and humility (and by that I don't mean listening uncritically to those that claim they are explaining your faith).  If you don't have faith, then you've cut yourself off from the possibility of revealed truth and that means you have to do the math long form, but I believe that you can still get there (which a lot of other Christians probably believe is a blasphemy as they believe that only through god can you understand these truths, but I'd point to C.S. Lewis and that Last Battle on this with its treatment of the good soldier fighting for the wrong god, and to my own assertions above that if you have been given the tools by god to do the long math, then even the secular person is really coming to the truth through god).

On the other hand, such a morality could all be arbitrary (great old twilight zone on that, where aliens visited to destroy us because we were a massive failure and disappointment, and we begged for a year to correct the issue.  When they returned we delivered them our binding commitment to world peace and unity, and they promptly sentenced us to death because we had failed to become the super soldiers they meant us to be), or it could be that it doesn't exist at all, but in any event I think it makes the world better to seek to find it.

Fenring

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #92 on: September 11, 2019, 11:48:13 AM »
Seriati,

The point of the paladin analogy was only that a lawful-good can hamper a party doing what it thinks is best to deal with a problem. If the analogy hurts more than it helps then you can forget it, and instead try to take away its intended message. The point was that when defining "adherence to rule of law" that phrase means nothing without context, just as the paladin's LG alignment has a context (the dictates of the deity). Adherence to rule of law alone can exist in LG, LN, or LE forms, and all of them believe they're doing the right thing. In the D&D context we wouldn't say necessarily they think they're doing the 'good thing' because "good" has a formal meaning in that context, but most often even in our world people call it the 'right thing' rather than the 'good thing', and indeed a LE character does the right thing by serving its LE deity. If a Paladin resided in a LE area permanently, whose residents liked the laws there, it would be very hard for them to see the paladin as anything other than chaotic since their laws would mean nothing to the paladin and he would no doubt be trying to rip them down at every turn. Putting aside the good/evil definitions, the paladin would come off to them as chaotic due to trying to undermine their system of law, even though from his perspective he's clearly lawful by his own definitions and according to his deity. This is the 'relativity' thing I mentioned. Whether you like the analogy or not, my point is that it's entirely possible for people who are opposed to the laws as you know them to actually believe in law as you do but to also believe that these laws need to be opposed. Sometimes this may be because they're evil, let's say, or other times because (as you often put it) they just don't work even though their intended end may be ok.

My other point about 'don't be surprised that leftists shift more than right-wingers' was an offhand comment and not core to my point, but more a reflection on the fact that I don't think you need to assume nefarious motives in order to understand why left-wing positions and terms may often seem quite movable.

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This can get hairy, but imagine for those people you think want to change definitions, mind control everyone, and grab power through language and changing narratives: why would ordinary people want to do that?

They don't why do you think there's a constant backlash against "PC Culture" or people that complain about having to use pronouns of choice.  Heck is large part of why Trump got elected.

I know, but you said above that you think the middle is becoming fanatical. So clearly you do seem to think that ordinary people are getting with the program. My question was why they would, and you say it's intimidation. You may be right, but that's only half an answer, because in a strict sense probably a lot of socialization can loosely be called 'intimidation' in the sense of people feel a pressure applied to them and comply with it. How great the pressure is can vary, but there are *always* consequences to declining to adhere to a social pressure of any form, whether it's backed up by direct force or not. My question was: what object do people employing these tactics you dislike see before them? What's the goal they think they're achieving? If you say it's just denial of reality, that's a result, not a cause; no one has the overt goal of denying reality, although I agree it's all too common as a result. My question will always be what systemic pressure creates incentive for a behavior; that's basic economics. And if a behavior is widespread you can bet the incentive is too; so where does the incentive come from? Why does it seem advantageous to wage cultural warfare in this manner? Pinpoint the axis of movement and you may find a way to satisfy the desire without having to engage with the methods used to obtain it. But push back hard and the other side will rally.



D.W.

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #93 on: September 11, 2019, 02:26:09 PM »
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I mean honestly, would anyone even think they had a use for a "protection from good" spell?
Door mats?   ;D

D.W.

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #94 on: September 11, 2019, 02:49:38 PM »
Also:  The process of going from one ordered society to another is rarely without chaos.  :)

Local law has little bearing upon lawful/chaotic alignment axis.  That's all about intent, or lack of it, of one's actions. 

D&D alignment is officially more interesting than attempting to defend anything Trump did per the OP.   :P

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #95 on: September 11, 2019, 04:02:20 PM »
Or maybe we're talking about D&D because it's easier. 

In any event, anyone notice the big story from CNN that a US spy was pulled out of Russia because of fears that bigmouth Trump would expose him as reported by CNN from "multiple Trump administration officials with direct knowledge," being pretty much decisively shown to have been initiated before Trump was a President and because of press inquiries not Trump.  How was it then that CNN's anonymous sources, with direct knowledge, got it so wrong?  Are they not who CNN pretended they are?  Were they just liars? 

The world may never know, but hey it sounds like it could have been true, so I guess it meets the new standards.

D.W.

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #96 on: September 11, 2019, 04:11:04 PM »
Not gonna touch that one.  I'm more inclined to believe it was an actual source with a BS claim than a BS story with no source...  But that's what you get when you race for clicks instead of solid journalism. 

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #97 on: September 13, 2019, 10:36:00 AM »
And as a follow up on my prior point, see the link that walks through just how fake the spy being removed because of the Trump admin leaks really was (has CNN retracted?  Not to my knowledge).

https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/marc-thiessen-cnn-blame-trump-obama-leaks

Seriati

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #98 on: September 13, 2019, 02:47:19 PM »
Here's another one from Kim Straussel at the WSJ, and she's one of my favs if you go back and read her older work it's not hard to figure out why.  https://www.wsj.com/articles/about-that-russian-spy-11568325206][url]https://www.wsj.com/articles/about-that-russian-spy-11568325206[/url]

TheDrake

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Re: Would anybody care to defend this Trump move?
« Reply #99 on: Today at 01:28:58 PM »
And how do we know about CNN's terrible reporting? NYT, Washington Post, and other news organizations. No, it wasn't Fox that figured this out, sent reporters into the field.

I wouldn't trust CNN to report yesterday's weather.