October 16, 2019, 11:07:44 PM

Author Topic: Politics and other ailments of the real world  (Read 268059 times)

Offline Hedin

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #390 on: February 22, 2016, 04:35:37 PM »
WTF America

http://www.finaid.org/loans/studentloandebtclock.phtml

Is this for real?

Yes. Expenses for one year of college can cost about the same as many luxury cars. $40K-$50K is not unusual for private college and I know the public ones by me have gotten extremely competitive and are above the average in state tuition of closer to $25K/year. (note these estimates are total cost, so include tuition, fees, room and board, etc)

So, that is per year, so imagine the average family trying to find a way to pay for 4 years of that. Per kid. It's one of the reasons I did solid research on job feasibility for potential majors (only including ones I thought I would enjoy) before I picked one. It made paying off my loans a heck of a lot easier if I was able to actually use my degree to get a job, which is not the case for many majors.

Student loan debt is really crippling recent grads.  Wage growth hasn't gone up enough for newer grads to keep up with it and it has some bad downstream effects on the economy as those people don't have the disposal income to buy goods let alone really get into home ownership.  I got lucky with my parents and they paid for the tuition while I got loans for my room & board plus living expenses so I wasn't hit too bad coming out (I also missed the large tuition hikes that came after I graduated).  We are currently putting a decent amount of our income that I would love to make extra payments on our mortgage or do other stuff with in a college fund for our daughter so hopefully she (and her sister down the line) won't have crippling debt out of college.

Offline Saraband

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #391 on: February 22, 2016, 04:37:52 PM »
So I just sit back and watch the people and see what happens.

I wish the innocent ones getting tortured could be as comfortable as you.

Yeah, I'm out. It was nice to have a politics thread and keep it civil, but at least for now, I can't, so I'll avoid it for a while.
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Offline Rukaio_Alter

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #392 on: February 22, 2016, 05:34:19 PM »
I really don't know how I feel about torture.
On one hand, I think it's a good idea. Since the prisoners know it won't stop unless they give the correct answer, and will be punished for the wrong ones, it's effective. We would've never found a lot of the terrorists we have without it.
That's not true in the slightest. In fact, multiple studies and inquiries have shown that the amount of reliable information we've obtained solely through torture is incredibly low to non-existant. When you torture a man to the point where he'll say anything, he will say anything regardless of whether it's true or not. As a method for finding reliable information, Torture. Does. Not. Work. The only thing torture is any good for is obtaining forced confessions. Hence why we should not be using it.

Quote

On the other hand, it scares the hell out of me. I don't trust the government of course.

I don't trust the government either, but that has more do with its incompetence than any kind of malice. I can't remember where I heard this, but the perfect description of the government is, rather than one single brain controlling many different hands, in reality it's hundreds of different brains all trying to control one single hand. Sometimes they get it to do stuff but most of the time they're just fighting among themselves.

Quote
I find it hard to believe that we killed Bin Ladin, or however you spell his name.
I can prove without a doubt that Bin Laden is dead with six simple words. Imagine if he turned up alive. The sheer embarrassment of the US government having been caught lying about killing America's No 1 enemy would be utterly devastating. As such, if the US government makes a statement saying that they have killed Osama Bin Laden, it is only because they are 100% certain Bin Laden is dead and will never turn up to deny them. Now, whether his death went down exactly as they say it, that might be up to interpretation, but the guy is dead without a doubt.

Quote
In fact, I have trouble believing 9/11 was even a terrorist plot.
It was. See the above points about government competence.

Quote
I know this shouldn't be my logic. "Everyone has rights. Humans shouldn't be doing this and that to each other." Okay sure. But it's happening. Us stopping torture doesn't prevent the terrorists from torturing us. "But we should be better. We have the moral high ground." Do we? Really? No. That's just wishful thinking. We do terrible things too. Everybody does. It just depends on what you consider is worse. Am I condoning the actions of terrorists? No. What they've done is wrong and disgusting. But we're not excluded from that.
So I just sit back and watch the people and see what happens.
The hell kind of logic is that? Just because we occasionally do terrible things somehow justifies us doing even more terrible things? Especially since, as we already established, torture doesn't work.
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Offline night_wrtr

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #393 on: February 22, 2016, 05:41:40 PM »
WTF America

http://www.finaid.org/loans/studentloandebtclock.phtml

Is this for real?

Yes. Expenses for one year of college can cost about the same as many luxury cars. $40K-$50K is not unusual for private college and I know the public ones by me have gotten extremely competitive and are above the average in state tuition of closer to $25K/year. (note these estimates are total cost, so include tuition, fees, room and board, etc)

So, that is per year, so imagine the average family trying to find a way to pay for 4 years of that. Per kid. It's one of the reasons I did solid research on job feasibility for potential majors (only including ones I thought I would enjoy) before I picked one. It made paying off my loans a heck of a lot easier if I was able to actually use my degree to get a job, which is not the case for many majors.

I graduated college in '07 and have had to defer my loans until 2 years ago when I finally was able to make payments. I still can't make the full payment and have to do one of the payment plans which basically only covers the interest. I will be paying on my loans until the day I die.

In other news, I majored in History. There is absolutely nothing I have been able to find that puts it to use, unless I want to go BACK to school and get a masters to teach, then do an unpaid internship for a year. Yeah, because that's possible.  :-\ (even so, what do teachers make these days? About nothing.) Its a shame really, because I think studying history taught me a great deal about myself and the world as a whole.

I wish I had your foresight, Arry. I wish someone had prepared me to find a major in highschool, which would have helped me choose the right college, which then would have put me on the path to a career. Maybe I am just blinded in my age, since its been a while since I was in school, but I don't recall a large effort going into preparing me for life outside of standardized testing.

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #394 on: February 22, 2016, 06:05:35 PM »
I knew student loan debt was high in the states I had no idea it was at absurd proportions.
If I believed the educational standard was not declining or the job opportunities justified the expense. I could comprend this. I don't believe that to be the case.
The UK was taken down this path and we are seeing an erosion in education and everything related to education monetised

FWIW Holland will educate foriegn nationals for free and in English at three of their universities. There are plans to expand this scheme. You find living costs, books etc. Demand massively outstrips supply for places but this has to be worth considering.
I suspect other nations in Europe may do likewise soon.

Offline Elfy

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #395 on: February 22, 2016, 08:53:58 PM »
On one hand, I think it's a good idea. Since the prisoners know it won't stop unless they give the correct answer, and will be punished for the wrong ones, it's effective.
Do you not see the issue with that? If you don't stop hurting someone until they tell you what you want to hear, then they will eventually tell you what you want to hear. Even if it is not true. How can anyone claim that's an effective intelligence-gathering strategy?
Yeah, I agree with this. There's an episode of Burn Notice where Michael Westen monologues against torture and he compares it to shopping with a flamethrower, it's messy and doesn't get the required results.
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Offline tebakutis

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #396 on: February 22, 2016, 08:56:04 PM »
I really don't know how I feel about torture.
On one hand, I think it's a good idea. Since the prisoners know it won't stop unless they give the correct answer, and will be punished for the wrong ones, it's effective. We would've never found a lot of the terrorists we have without it.
That's not true in the slightest. In fact, multiple studies and inquiries have shown that the amount of reliable information we've obtained solely through torture is incredibly low to non-existant. When you torture a man to the point where he'll say anything, he will say anything regardless of whether it's true or not. As a method for finding reliable information, Torture. Does. Not. Work. The only thing torture is any good for is obtaining forced confessions. Hence why we should not be using it.

I don't necessarily want to pile on here, but yes, this exactly.

Despite what the average episode of 24 would have you believe, torture is not effective. If you're still unsure about that, I'd ask you to try is a thought experiment.

Imagine the government decides that you, @ultamentkiller (who we all know is not a terrorist, and is in fact a cool guy) is a terrorist. Men break into your home, throw a black bag over your head, and abduct you in the night. They hold you without trial, and they hurt you every single day for weeks. Months.

You are not allowed to contact your family, or speak to a lawyer, or talk to anyone other than your interrogators. You are kept in solitary confinement. Your only interaction with anyone is when they hurt you, repeatedly, and ask the same questions each time. "Are you a terrorist?"

If you say no, your interrogators will continue to hurt you. You will not go free, no matter how many times you tell them you aren't a terrorist, because they have already decided you are. And so it goes, for as long as it takes.

Are you a terrorist? Nope. But if someone was to subject you to what I just described, you would, sooner or later, tell them you were a terrorist. Might take a week. Might take a month. Might take a year. But eventually, you would say "Yes, I'm a terrorist". You would lie to make the pain STOP, and then your interrogators would say "Ha! I knew he was a terrorist all along."

That's why torture doesn't work.

I know this conversation is a tough one, which is why I'm glad it's confined to this thread, where people know what to expect. But it's a conversation that needs to be had, and like with my harping on Trump's dangerous, racist statements, if I can make just one person rethink their position, or at least consider doing so, I feel I have a responsibility to try.

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #397 on: February 22, 2016, 09:49:45 PM »
Who gets to determine if someone is a terrorist and do you trust them? Will you trust the people in 20 years time who make that decision?
I am always amazed that the most barbaric tortures are come up with by the supposedly free and enlightened cultures. Those supporting torture tend to hold the same fundementalist beliefs as those they would practise it on.

I am of the opinion that if you swim with sharks expect to get bit and have no intention of inviting sharks in the pool with me.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2016, 09:51:30 PM by Rostum »

Offline ultamentkiller

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #398 on: February 22, 2016, 10:10:24 PM »
I'll just give a broad response here, because picking apart quotes is too much energy for this.
I doubt I'll sway anyone here about 9/11, but there's just too many things odd about it for me to believe it was done without any inside help from the government. Maybe everything I've heard is wrong? What do I know? I'm young. But from my understand, there's a petition that has a significant amount of engineers(at least 2000 I think) saying the Twin Towers could not have fallen just with planes hitting them. Then there's the creepy image you get when you fold the dollar bill a certain way. Then there's the excuse to use 9/11 to obtain oil. Both the CIA and FBI knew about the attack, yet refused to talk to each other. The directors told the agents not to worry about it. Hell, creepily enough, The Simpsons even predicted it.
I don't have exact links to all this, but feel free to look it up. Regardless, I doubt I'll change anyone's mind. And 9/11 wouldn't be the first time it happened. There's evidence out there showing how we knew Pearl Harbor was coming, yet refused to stop it so America would get involved in WWII.
So we go over there and shoot Mr. Terrorist leader a decade later. Good job guys! Oh wait, we got a call. We have to dump his body in the ocean, so we can be respectful. Please. You just walked into his house, shot his family, pretty much went into the country without permission... And you want to respect burial customs? I think your past that now. And how convenient that now we can't have someone do an autopsy and all that to identify the body.
As far as torture goes. First, I respect the Burn Notice reference. Very very true. Yes, torture can and has given forced confessions to make the pain stop. I also will admit to not knowing the ratio to information gathered VS. prisoners who gave nothing and died. I remember watching Zero Dark 30 a year or so ago. It was a fascinating movie about how exactly we found Bin Laden. From what I remember, half of the useful information we got was from torturing people. And when Obama stopped it(or officially did) in 2009, the CIA looked at each other and wondered how they were supposed to move forward.
So I guess it comes down to statistics. Information gained/lost. How important the information was.  How often we effectively acted on that information. Things like that.
If we could never act effectively, and the amount and importance of information gained didn't exceed the time we put into it, then it's not worth it. Under no circumstances should a confession be taken while someone's being tortured. You're right. They'll just admit to it. But if it's specific information that we can verify and act on, why not?
Again, I'm young, and maybe I'm completely wrong. But I can't find the answers without talking to people. I understand what I said earlier offended, and possibly alienated, others. But this thread is here to face and discuss tough issues. I certainly don't agree with everything said here. But I won't ever walk away from it. If I'm not willing to hear the other side of the story and gain a new perspective, then why would I be on this thread in the first place? Hell, why would I be reading anything? That's like putting down The First Law because I don't agree with the side of life it shows. Same goes with The Broken Empire. It's fascinating to hear from people who have different beliefs than I. It's amazing having the opportunity to hear from people all over the world with different experiences in life. If that's something you can't handle, that's fine. Walk away if you must. But whatever you do, don't discriminate against someone because they have a different perspective on life.
Do I do this at times? Yes, and I've been called out for it, right on this very thread. Even though I wanted to laugh at Berney Sanders for his comment that climate change is responsible for ISIS, I shouldn't have turned off the democratic debate. I probably still wouldn't vote for him, but at least I would have a greater understanding of what he stands for so I could have a more educated discussion on the topic. My mistake. I think we all do that at times, and it's wrong.
So if you have a different opinion about something(which I know we all do) please share. Who knows? You may change someone's mind. Even if it makes you passionate, there are ways to discuss without screaming at the top of your lungs and using extreme profanity. if something comes off wrong, then just delete and rewrite. That's the beauty of this thread. It allows us to compose our responses and make sure the message we're trying to send comes across as clearly as possible.
Bottom line. I refuse to walk away from a topic that's sensitive, or dislike someone based on something major like their political view, or minor like book tastes. I hope you'll do the same.

Offline tebakutis

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #399 on: February 22, 2016, 10:34:30 PM »
Again, I'm young, and maybe I'm completely wrong. But I can't find the answers without talking to people. I understand what I said earlier offended, and possibly alienated, others. But this thread is here to face and discuss tough issues. I certainly don't agree with everything said here. But I won't ever walk away from it. If I'm not willing to hear the other side of the story and gain a new perspective, then why would I be on this thread in the first place?

Dude, kudos for listening. That's why I'm engaging you on this. I'm glad you're at least taking the time to consider some of what we're talking about in here. And yeah, I was young once too (okay, that makes me sound super old ... I'm 38 :P) but by that, I mean I didn't have all the information I have now. And I got that information by chatting with people. So again, thanks for keeping an open mind. I'll try to hit a couple of things you brought up and explain them in ways that make sense.

I doubt I'll sway anyone here about 9/11, but there's just too many things odd about it for me to believe it was done without any inside help from the government. Maybe everything I've heard is wrong? What do I know? I'm young. But from my understand, there's a petition that has a significant amount of engineers(at least 2000 I think) saying the Twin Towers could not have fallen just with planes hitting them. Then there's the creepy image you get when you fold the dollar bill a certain way. Then there's the excuse to use 9/11 to obtain oil. Both the CIA and FBI knew about the attack, yet refused to talk to each other. The directors told the agents not to worry about it. Hell, creepily enough, The Simpsons even predicted it.
I don't have exact links to all this, but feel free to look it up. Regardless, I doubt I'll change anyone's mind.

What you're referring to is a widely debunked conspiracy theory that's been floating around the Internet for some time (much of what you mention was incorrectly put together in a mock documentary called Loose Change). As you've suggested, I'd encourage you to seek out information beyond the channels you're familiar with to verify that the claims made by that documentary are bogus. You mentioned you don't trust the government ... if I could point to a single thing that I hope might sway you, it's that the government is TERRIBLE at keeping secrets. If the government was involved in 9/11, it would have taken hundreds of people conspiring to pull that off. Someone would have talked by now. It's simply untrue.

Now, the standard response by conspiracy theorists is to knock the messager. Oh, you have a fact that doesn't fit my conspiracy narrative? Well, you're in the on the conspiracy! Consider any conspiracy, such as Bugs Bunny secretly running for president. Present me with any facts you like, from any source you like. All I have to do is say "The person you just mentioned is working for Bugs Bunny!" and I've invalidated your fact to ensure my narrative isn't damaged. Ultimately, the theory that the US government caused 9/11 is just that, a conspiracy theory, so again, I'd encourage you to attempt to verify the spurious claims made by Loose Change (and all those who quote from it) with an open mind.

So we go over there and shoot Mr. Terrorist leader a decade later. Good job guys! Oh wait, we got a call. We have to dump his body in the ocean, so we can be respectful. Please. You just walked into his house, shot his family, pretty much went into the country without permission... And you want to respect burial customs? I think your past that now. And how convenient that now we can't have someone do an autopsy and all that to identify the body.

Although this was pitched as a gesture of "respect", it was also a strategic move. Bin Laden was a martyr and hero to terrorists the world over. The problem we encountered after killing him was that no matter where we buried him, whether on his soil, our soil, or anywhere else in the world, the location would become known, and it would become a mecca for terrorists. They would go to Bin Laden's grave to pay tribute, giving us a whole lot of very unattractive options. Guard the grave against suicide bombers 24/7? Allow terrorists to gather freely and make "Death to America" videos? Allow Bin Laden's followers to dig him up?

Ultimately, the reason we dumped him in the sea was to ensure there was no place in the world where his many followers could gather to pay tribute to him as a martyr. He's dead. He's been dead for some time now. If he was alive, ISIS or Al-Queda or any of the number of splinter groups would have said so. It would be the ultimate way for them to mock the US. They haven't made that claim, because they know he's dead too.

Anyway, hopefully that makes it a bit more clear why they dumped Bin Laden's body in the sea.

Yes, torture can and has given forced confessions to make the pain stop. I also will admit to not knowing the ratio to information gathered VS. prisoners who gave nothing and died. I remember watching Zero Dark 30 a year or so ago. It was a fascinating movie about how exactly we found Bin Laden. From what I remember, half of the useful information we got was from torturing people. And when Obama stopped it(or officially did) in 2009, the CIA looked at each other and wondered how they were supposed to move forward.

I'd be careful about equating dramatizations of events to historical fact. Zero Dark Thirty is a work of fiction based on historical events, not a documentary. For comparison, I'd point you to the Wikipedia page maintained for the movie, here.

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

The pertinent part is this:

Quote
Historical accuracy
Further information: Search for Osama bin Laden and Death of Osama bin Laden

Zero Dark Thirty has received criticism for historical inaccuracy. Former Assistant Secretary of Defense Graham T. Allison has opined that the film is inaccurate in three important regards: the overstatement of the positive role of enhanced interrogation methods, the understatement of the role of the Obama administration, and the portrayal of the efforts as being driven by one agent battling against the CIA "system".[59]

In December 2014 Jane Mayer of The New Yorker wrote that "Maya" was modeled in part after CIA officer Alfreda Frances Bikowsky.[60]

On May 21, 2015, journalist Seymour Hersh reported that the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) had kept bin Laden under house arrest at Abbottabad since 2006, and that Pakistani Army chief Pervez Kayani and ISI director Ahmad Shuja Pasha aided the U.S. mission to kill, not capture bin Laden.[61][62] Hersh's U.S. and Pakistani intelligence sources stated that the U.S. had learned of bin Laden's location through an ISI walk-in seeking the $25 million reward and not through tracking a courier; this had been previously reported by R.J. Hillhouse and was afterward confirmed by NBC News.[61][63][64] The White House denied Hersh's report.[65][66]

If you actually jump to the page, you can read the citations for the historical inaccuracies, such as the role of torture in extracting Bin Laden's location.

So I guess it comes down to statistics. Information gained/lost. How important the information was.  How often we effectively acted on that information. Things like that.
If we could never act effectively, and the amount and importance of information gained didn't exceed the time we put into it, then it's not worth it. Under no circumstances should a confession be taken while someone's being tortured. You're right. They'll just admit to it. But if it's specific information that we can verify and act on, why not?

Regarding torture, I would make the point that even if you were to accept that, on some rare occasion, it would produce actionable intelligence, the fact that all torture produces intelligence (which is almost certainly bogus) means anything accurate you did gain by it would become lost in the noise. You can't base your intelligence gathering on torturing people any more than you could base it on crystal balls or guesses. This is one of the biggest misunderstandings about how torture worked (perpetuated by shows like 24 and movies like Zero Dark Thirty).

If you're interested, I can actually recommend some books on the psychological effects of torture and all the reasons it's unreliable for extracting information. I don't have them handy, but I can look them up once I'm no longer at work.

And again, thanks for listening. No one has all the answers (I certainly don't!) but ultimately, there is enough consensus in certain areas that you can feel reasonably confident you understand how things work.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2016, 12:35:18 AM by tebakutis »

Offline tebakutis

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #400 on: February 22, 2016, 11:24:11 PM »
Even though I wanted to laugh at Berney Sanders for his comment that climate change is responsible for ISIS, I shouldn't have turned off the democratic debate. I probably still wouldn't vote for him, but at least I would have a greater understanding of what he stands for so I could have a more educated discussion on the topic. My mistake. I think we all do that at times, and it's wrong.

Oh, I actually meant to respond to this too, as it does require a bit of explanation. There's actually two Youtube clips from my favorite science educators that sum this up rather well.

First, Neil Degrasse Tyson explains climate change. The upshot of this is that climate change does not mean winter ceases to exist. It means the average temperature of both hot and cold weather are rising over time, which is exactly what we've proven is happening. So, last winter, you had a high of 96 and a low of 8. This winter, you have a high of 98 and a low of 10. Cold still occurs, but the overall average has risen.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBdxDFpDp_k[/youtube]

Second, Bernie Sanders is correct that climate change is a contributing factor in regards to the rise of ISIS and other extremist groups. In a nutshell, many of the countries from which ISIS and other extremist groups recruit still have a strong focus on agriculture. It produces a large number of jobs and keeps people, especially young people, employed.

Because of the rise in global temperature over time (climate change) many people who used to be involved in agriculture for their livelihood no longer have jobs. Their crops no longer grow because it is too hot, or don't grow sufficiently to support them. This has produced a huge vacuum in jobs available to people (especially young people) and, because their traditional avenues of work are no longer available, when ISIS or another group comes in and offers them a salary to wage jihad, suddenly, that's an option.

If you give a young person a choice between life working a farm, or fighting in a war and avoiding drone strikes and other terrors, they will almost certainly choose to work on the farm. But take the ability to work on a farm away (climate change!) and now you've left them no option. You can starve, or you can go to work for ISIS. So climate change DOES contribute to the rise of extremist groups by giving them a much wider (and desperate) pool of recruits.

Bill Nye does an excellent job of explaining this here:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0kgIHxkMS8[/youtube]
« Last Edit: February 23, 2016, 12:29:47 AM by tebakutis »

Offline m3mnoch

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #401 on: February 23, 2016, 12:45:57 AM »
So we go over there and shoot Mr. Terrorist leader a decade later. Good job guys! Oh wait, we got a call. We have to dump his body in the ocean, so we can be respectful. Please. You just walked into his house, shot his family, pretty much went into the country without permission... And you want to respect burial customs? I think your past that now. And how convenient that now we can't have someone do an autopsy and all that to identify the body.

Although this was pitched as a gesture of "respect", it was also a strategic move. Bin Laden was a martyr and hero to terrorists the world over. The problem we encountered after killing him was that no matter where we buried him, whether on his soil, our soil, or anywhere else in the world, the location would become known, and it would become a mecca for terrorists. They would go to Bin Laden's grave to pay tribute, giving us a whole lot of very unattractive options. Guard the grave against suicide bombers 24/7? Allow terrorists to gather freely and make "Death to America" videos? Allow Bin Laden's followers to dig him up?

Ultimately, the reason we dumped him in the sea was to ensure there was no place in the world where his many followers could gather to pay tribute to him as a martyr. He's dead. He's been dead for some time now. If he was alive, ISIS or Al-Queda or any of the number of splinter groups would have said so. It would be the ultimate way for them to mock the US. They haven't made that claim, because they know he's dead too.

Anyway, hopefully that makes it a bit more clear why they dumped Bin Laden's body in the sea.

yup.

so don't forget about the nation now responsible for his corpse.  the nation being blackmailed to get it back.  the nation under siege for allow him to be interred.  the nation disrespecting his worldly body.

that nation doesn't exist since he's in international water.

he's shark food, man.  it was a brilliant move and a giant f-u to terrorists.  i loved it.

best of all?  now there's precedent.

Offline ultamentkiller

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #402 on: February 23, 2016, 04:10:17 AM »
Even though I wanted to laugh at Berney Sanders for his comment that climate change is responsible for ISIS, I shouldn't have turned off the democratic debate. I probably still wouldn't vote for him, but at least I would have a greater understanding of what he stands for so I could have a more educated discussion on the topic. My mistake. I think we all do that at times, and it's wrong.

Oh, I actually meant to respond to this too, as it does require a bit of explanation. There's actually two Youtube clips from my favorite science educators that sum this up rather well.

First, Neil Degrasse Tyson explains climate change. The upshot of this is that climate change does not mean winter ceases to exist. It means the average temperature of both hot and cold weather are rising over time, which is exactly what we've proven is happening. So, last winter, you had a high of 96 and a low of 8. This winter, you have a high of 98 and a low of 10. Cold still occurs, but the overall average has risen.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBdxDFpDp_k[/youtube]

Second, Bernie Sanders is correct that climate change is a contributing factor in regards to the rise of ISIS and other extremist groups. In a nutshell, many of the countries from which ISIS and other extremist groups recruit still have a strong focus on agriculture. It produces a large number of jobs and keeps people, especially young people, employed.

Because of the rise in global temperature over time (climate change) many people who used to be involved in agriculture for their livelihood no longer have jobs. Their crops no longer grow because it is too hot, or don't grow sufficiently to support them. This has produced a huge vacuum in jobs available to people (especially young people) and, because their traditional avenues of work are no longer available, when ISIS or another group comes in and offers them a salary to wage jihad, suddenly, that's an option.

If you give a young person a choice between life working a farm, or fighting in a war and avoiding drone strikes and other terrors, they will almost certainly choose to work on the farm. But take the ability to work on a farm away (climate change!) and now you've left them no option. You can starve, or you can go to work for ISIS. So climate change DOES contribute to the rise of extremist groups by giving them a much wider (and desperate) pool of recruits.

Bill Nye does an excellent job of explaining this here:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0kgIHxkMS8[/youtube]
I think that's an interesting theory, but out of everything you've mentioned, it's the least I'm willing to buy into.
First, I'll admit to falling on the side that doubts climate change as a whole. As in, we're causing climate change. The climate's always changing. It's Earth. That's what it does. I know someone will come along and throw statistics and research against this theory, but there's an equal number opposing that viewpoint, so it's not worth the effort.
I haven't heard any farmers turning around and saying, "Man, ever since we got technology, farming sucks. The weather keeps changing on me. I don't know what to do. It's not like my ancestors had to deal with weather changes. Everything just stayed the same, and it was beautiful."
Maybe I'm just ignorant.
Also, when it comes to politics, I've realized I'm the guy in the room that everyone just stares at because he has four arms, 6 legs, and two heads. Most of my views will hit brick walls and fall on deaf ears. But I'll tell my side anyways.
As for the others above, it has given me something to think about. I won't say I've changed my mind completely, but it's given me a new perspective. I've heard all the 9/11 arguments before, and none of them are enough to convince me that it's false. I've never even watched the documentary referenced. There's good points on both sides of the discussion. I'm just on the one that believes our government is willing to do whatever is necessary to gain more control of the people.

Offline m3mnoch

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #403 on: February 23, 2016, 04:54:19 AM »
but there's an equal number opposing that viewpoint

no.  actually, there's not.  the research is skewed 100-to-1 in the "we're screwing up the planet" direction.  the "1" being bought and paid for propaganda.

the loud, political views, however, are indeed equally split.

Offline Rukaio_Alter

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #404 on: February 23, 2016, 06:25:29 AM »

I think that's an interesting theory, but out of everything you've mentioned, it's the least I'm willing to buy into.
First, I'll admit to falling on the side that doubts climate change as a whole. As in, we're causing climate change. The climate's always changing. It's Earth. That's what it does.
Yes, except that that process tends to be a slow one that happens over millions of years. Not decades. The only exception is if a major event happens to shift the climate, like a meteor strike or a super volcano (like Yellowstone) erupting. And, in this case, the major event is humanity and our decades of pumping chemicals into the air and generally fucking up the enviroment.

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I know someone will come along and throw statistics and research against this theory, but there's an equal number opposing that viewpoint, so it's not worth the effort.
Like m3mnoch said, it's not anywhere near to equal numbers of scientists who don't believe in man-made climate change. I don't even know where you heard that because it's factually untrue. The vast majority of scientists knowledgable in that field agree climate change is real and man-made and most of those opposed have links to lobbyist groups that would suffer if restrictions were placed to help combat climate change. Aka, it's in their best interest for everyone to believe climate change was false.

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I haven't heard any farmers turning around and saying, "Man, ever since we got technology, farming sucks. The weather keeps changing on me. I don't know what to do. It's not like my ancestors had to deal with weather changes. Everything just stayed the same, and it was beautiful."
That's exactly the same kind of logic people used a few years back when they claimed a massive snowstorm proved that 'global warming' was false. And it's equally untrue because it shows a massive misunderstanding of how climate change works. Just because you can't visibly witness climate change with your own two eyes does not mean it does not exist. Climate change works slow and has small effects that grow within time.

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Also, when it comes to politics, I've realized I'm the guy in the room that everyone just stares at because he has four arms, 6 legs, and two heads. Most of my views will hit brick walls and fall on deaf ears. But I'll tell my side anyways.
To be honest, the odd looks you get are less a case of your views being anathemia to everyone and more that a lot of what you're saying is just factually untrue or painfully misinformed. 
 
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As for the others above, it has given me something to think about. I won't say I've changed my mind completely, but it's given me a new perspective. I've heard all the 9/11 arguments before, and none of them are enough to convince me that it's false. I've never even watched the documentary referenced.

I suspect if you still believe 9/11 was staged then you probably haven't 'heard all the 9/11 arguments before'.

Personally, even ignoring the mountains of physical evidence that 9/11 was not hoaxed, one of the logical arguments that makes the most sense to me is 'If 9/11 was staged with explosives then why the planes?' There are a million and one things that could go wrong with a plane hijacking, let alone 4. If the explosives were already planted, then would it not make significantly more sense just to blow up the towers with the explosives anyway and claim Al Queda did it? You'd get the same result either way and much less in the way of messy details.

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There's good points on both sides of the discussion.

Not really. Maybe there are points that sound reasonable, but the evidence is significantly stacked against the 'truthers'.

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I'm just on the one that believes our government is willing to do whatever is necessary to gain more control of the people.
Again, you're referring to the government as if it's this singular entity. In reality, it's thousands of arguing brains trying to control one hand. This election cycle more than anything has proved that. The US government can't even pass a sensible gun control bill, never mind create a massive conspiracy like 9/11 would require.
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