The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Politics and other such topical creams.
Dr. Medulla
User avatar
Atheistic Epileptic
Posts: 71105
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 2:00pm
Location: Nerdo Crombezia
Contact:

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by Dr. Medulla » 30 Jan 2017, 4:31pm

Kory wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 4:24pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 4:12pm
Kory wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 3:56pm
I'm fine with everybody living with dignity and comfort. I don't have any objection to that. But after talking to people online, reading thousands of comments, and talking to people in real life including my entire family, I just don't have any faith that people care about anything other than paranoid self-preservation paired with their need to control things that don't affect them. I see it a lot more than the opposite.
The key here is whether that shittiness is something inherent in human beings—something natural—or is it learned behaviour, the result of absorbing too uncritically ideologies that encourage that kind of nastiness. Leftists don't deny that ugliness in people; we just recognize it as something not intrinsic to human nature. It's about separating the sinner from the sin, to borrow inelegantly from religion. Which isn't to say that you can persuade all these people to let go of their bigotries, but to not inadvertently embrace the same kind of harsh, abstracting ideologies that denies a shared humanity.
Yeah I'll concede that I'm probably just getting discouraged.
And I get that—I have waves of that overcome me from time to time, especially the last several months—but not giving in on that point is beyond crucial.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

eumaas
User avatar
Klezmer Shogun
Posts: 22597
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 8:10pm
Location: Carrboro/Alamut

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by eumaas » 31 Jan 2017, 8:20pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 4:31pm
Kory wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 4:24pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 4:12pm
Kory wrote:
30 Jan 2017, 3:56pm
I'm fine with everybody living with dignity and comfort. I don't have any objection to that. But after talking to people online, reading thousands of comments, and talking to people in real life including my entire family, I just don't have any faith that people care about anything other than paranoid self-preservation paired with their need to control things that don't affect them. I see it a lot more than the opposite.
The key here is whether that shittiness is something inherent in human beings—something natural—or is it learned behaviour, the result of absorbing too uncritically ideologies that encourage that kind of nastiness. Leftists don't deny that ugliness in people; we just recognize it as something not intrinsic to human nature. It's about separating the sinner from the sin, to borrow inelegantly from religion. Which isn't to say that you can persuade all these people to let go of their bigotries, but to not inadvertently embrace the same kind of harsh, abstracting ideologies that denies a shared humanity.
Yeah I'll concede that I'm probably just getting discouraged.
And I get that—I have waves of that overcome me from time to time, especially the last several months—but not giving in on that point is beyond crucial.
& despite how bad things are, the left is more vital than any time in my life
"The only thing that really occurs to me that I can say on this is to point out how fascinating it is that the Hassan-i-Sabbah archetype keeps turning up over and over again ... He disappears up into the mountains and is never seen again. Believe me, he'll never be seen again. He'll live forever because of that."

Dr. Medulla
User avatar
Atheistic Epileptic
Posts: 71105
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 2:00pm
Location: Nerdo Crombezia
Contact:

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by Dr. Medulla » 31 Jan 2017, 8:59pm

eumaas wrote:
31 Jan 2017, 8:20pm
& despite how bad things are, the left is more vital than any time in my life
Christ, yeah. My reading of things is that neoliberalism is pretty much dead, or dead on its feet, and Western nations are either going to go fascist/ authoritarian (i.e., fascist lite) or social democracy. The odds in the US are still against social democracy given the considerable structures of power and possessors of great wealth and influence, but it's more viable than any time since LBJ pissed the initiative away in Southeast Asia. If Strauss and Howe are right, here's the secular crisis, and I take comfort and hope that the Millennials who are supposed to do the heavy lifting in a crisis are more geared to social democracy. Sanders and Trump gave the pendulum a good push and it might yet end up on the humanist side of things.

How's that for optimism?
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

BostonBeaneater
User avatar
Autonomous Insect Cyborg Sentinel
Posts: 6853
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 7:24pm
Location: Between the moon and New York City

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by BostonBeaneater » 02 Feb 2017, 4:15pm

Image

Dr. Medulla
User avatar
Atheistic Epileptic
Posts: 71105
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 2:00pm
Location: Nerdo Crombezia
Contact:

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by Dr. Medulla » 02 Feb 2017, 6:00pm

BostonBeaneater wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 4:15pm
California is pitching in...

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2017/0 ... Cg.twitter
This is really taking on a 1859, 1860 kinda tone. And, frankly, what is the rationale for the United States as currently constituted to exist? The original 13 colonies banded together for, fundamentally, defensive reasons and expanded as part of growing a domestic market. But if there is such a profound disagreement between so-called red and blue states, what is the point of them being connected politically?
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

BostonBeaneater
User avatar
Autonomous Insect Cyborg Sentinel
Posts: 6853
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 7:24pm
Location: Between the moon and New York City

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by BostonBeaneater » 02 Feb 2017, 6:50pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 6:00pm
BostonBeaneater wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 4:15pm
California is pitching in...

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2017/0 ... Cg.twitter
This is really taking on a 1859, 1860 kinda tone. And, frankly, what is the rationale for the United States as currently constituted to exist? The original 13 colonies banded together for, fundamentally, defensive reasons and expanded as part of growing a domestic market. But if there is such a profound disagreement between so-called red and blue states, what is the point of them being connected politically?
The Red States need us to fund them.
Image

Dr. Medulla
User avatar
Atheistic Epileptic
Posts: 71105
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 2:00pm
Location: Nerdo Crombezia
Contact:

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by Dr. Medulla » 02 Feb 2017, 6:54pm

BostonBeaneater wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 6:50pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 6:00pm
BostonBeaneater wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 4:15pm
California is pitching in...

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2017/0 ... Cg.twitter
This is really taking on a 1859, 1860 kinda tone. And, frankly, what is the rationale for the United States as currently constituted to exist? The original 13 colonies banded together for, fundamentally, defensive reasons and expanded as part of growing a domestic market. But if there is such a profound disagreement between so-called red and blue states, what is the point of them being connected politically?
The Red States need us to fund them.
And yet, if everyone is being sincere in their principles (ho ho, no, wait, let me finish), the boo-Washington, states-rights crowds in those Red states should support ending that kind of wealth redistribution.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

BostonBeaneater
User avatar
Autonomous Insect Cyborg Sentinel
Posts: 6853
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 7:24pm
Location: Between the moon and New York City

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by BostonBeaneater » 02 Feb 2017, 6:57pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 6:54pm

And yet, if everyone is being sincere in their principles (ho ho, no, wait, let me finish), the boo-Washington, states-rights crowds in those Red states should support ending that kind of wealth redistribution.
It's OK unless the brown people get some.
Image

Dr. Medulla
User avatar
Atheistic Epileptic
Posts: 71105
Joined: 15 Jun 2008, 2:00pm
Location: Nerdo Crombezia
Contact:

Re: The Reasons for Optimism Thread

Post by Dr. Medulla » 02 Feb 2017, 7:17pm

BostonBeaneater wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 6:57pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
02 Feb 2017, 6:54pm

And yet, if everyone is being sincere in their principles (ho ho, no, wait, let me finish), the boo-Washington, states-rights crowds in those Red states should support ending that kind of wealth redistribution.
It's OK unless the brown people get some.
Fun fact: That idea plays well up here, too. When i was an undergrad, one of my profs was heading to my hometown to participate in a debate about proposed constitutional changes. He asked me what the people are like and I said, "Redneck socialists. Government programs are fine, but not for those lazy Injuns." He saw me a few days later and said, "You couldn't have been more right." The capacity for middle- and upper-class whites to not recognize the government handouts that keep them materially comfortable is astonishing.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest