May 27, 2019, 04:30:51 AM

Author Topic: Politics and other ailments of the real world  (Read 229487 times)

Offline xiagan

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3015 on: February 21, 2019, 09:54:49 PM »
I would count atheism as a religion it has the inverted belief structure of one after all.

... well, I can only speak for myself here, but no. My atheism isn't a belief structure. It's simply an absence. That's like saying an empty lot is an architectural style, or a bunch of blank pages are a genre.
You spoke for me too.

And great post, Bradley. Unfortunately I'm not sure I'll have more luck with Jennie.
"Sire, I had no need of that hypothesis." (Laplace)

Offline Neveesandeh

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3016 on: February 22, 2019, 10:45:40 AM »
I don't want to drag out the religion thing further, but I've never thought of faith as 'belief without proof'. That's a fairly recent idea and one I consider pretty harmful. It encourages people to never question their beliefs.

As to whether atheism counts as a religion, I would agree with Eli that atheism isn't a religion. There are belief systems that could be considered religions that incorporate atheism, but atheism itself doesn't really have any ideology or principles. There are as many different forms of atheism as there are atheists.

I think I mentioned John Gray on another post. He wrote a whole book about this which I unfortunately have never had a chance to read because I lost my job a few months back and can't afford to buy so many books anymore.

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3017 on: February 22, 2019, 12:53:16 PM »
Quote
I don't want to drag out the religion thing further, but I've never thought of faith as 'belief without proof'. That's a fairly recent idea and one I consider pretty harmful. It encourages people to never question their beliefs.

Please expand on this.

I think people regularly fail to comprehend what they profess to believe and will largely go to great lengths to avoid actually admitting that they have faith but not proof of what they believe in usually using terms like know and proof when actually they believe and faith means they don't require proof.

I am totally in favour of questioning everything, but then I am an ancient sceptic who has had the optimism beaten out of me and takes very little at face value.

Offline Neveesandeh

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3018 on: February 22, 2019, 02:41:41 PM »
Quote
I don't want to drag out the religion thing further, but I've never thought of faith as 'belief without proof'. That's a fairly recent idea and one I consider pretty harmful. It encourages people to never question their beliefs.

Please expand on this.

I think people regularly fail to comprehend what they profess to believe and will largely go to great lengths to avoid actually admitting that they have faith but not proof of what they believe in usually using terms like know and proof when actually they believe and faith means they don't require proof.

I am totally in favour of questioning everything, but then I am an ancient sceptic who has had the optimism beaten out of me and takes very little at face value.

From what I've read, 'faith' as a virtue is considered to be something like loyalty. With regards to the existence of God, for example, a lot of ancient and medieval philosophers derived a variety of proofs. (Which is ironic, considering there were very few atheists around in those days, but that's beside the point). I think this is why terminology referring to faith is used in the context of, say, marriage.

I feel that the reason why so many people have abandoned religion in recent times is because misunderstandings about these concepts become very widespread among our community and people realised they didn't add up.

A lot of people think of the soul as a sort of ghost separate to the physical body, or of God as being a human being with superpowers. If I were one of those people, I would consider myself an atheist because there is no evidence for either of those things.

Offline Neveesandeh

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3019 on: February 22, 2019, 02:55:10 PM »

Offline Eli_Freysson

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3020 on: February 22, 2019, 03:05:50 PM »
I know I lit the spark on this whole religion discussion, but while I want to keep responding this is making me nervous. I adore this site for being an actually friendly, peaceful corner of the wretched hive of scum and villainy that is the internet. And religious debate seems to so readily degenerate.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2019, 06:21:25 PM by Eli_Freysson »
I'll notify your next of kin... that you sucked!

Offline Neveesandeh

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3021 on: February 22, 2019, 05:39:45 PM »
I know I lit the spark on this whole religion discussion, but while I want to keep responding this is making me nervous. I adore this site for being an actually friendly, peaceful corner of the wretched hive of scum an villainy that is the internet. And religious debate seems to so readily degenerate.

Agreed. I'm perfectly fine to discuss the subject, but, this being the internet, any discussion will usually devolve into a flame war that will drag on and on drawing in more and more people with no sign of it ever ending.

Also, it's technically off topic for this thread.

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3022 on: February 22, 2019, 09:35:14 PM »
It is very rare to see anything on this site devolve into a flame war and I am certainly not looking to take anyone's faith and try and deny or damage it, possibly not always true of their beliefs, religious or not.

I totally agree about using a fake university as entrapment for a sting operation as being inexcusable. I find it immoral. It is more likely to target the victims of a very long-standing fraud than the criminals running it. Sadly education and organised crime become linked at the point that education is monetised. It seems a very heavy handed approach and targeting the wrong people. That said if they were to look at higher education in America it would have to be considered a racket and the UK is following Blythely in their footsteps.

Within the UK there is an ongoing investigation into educational fraud that has resulted in a number of collages literally having their students locked out as the courses were not actually delivering what they were charging for or were faking students or taking cash for qualifications. Bear in mind this is business as usual in much of the world.

For your consideration

https://thepienews.com/list-private-colleges-lost-tier-4-licences-home-offices-crackdown-student-visa-fraud/

Offline Eli_Freysson

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3023 on: February 23, 2019, 10:50:22 PM »
So apparently the Mueller report is due to drop within days. Finally. Any predictions on what will follow?
I'll notify your next of kin... that you sucked!

Offline tebakutis

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3024 on: February 24, 2019, 08:23:03 PM »
So apparently the Mueller report is due to drop within days. Finally. Any predictions on what will follow?

Unfortunately (as much as I'd like that to be true) this is false info. Mueller's team has directly said they do not plan to wrap up any time soon. I'm not sure where it came from.

Sadly, I feel that even the release of the Mueller report will only be the beginning of the investigations. I feel now that Trump and his cronies will have the entirety of his term (up until 2020, when he loses the election) to continue to enrich themselves and screw over literally everyone else.

Many of them will eventually go to prison (or just die, being old white farts) but the damage they've done to our courts, norms, and government will take decades to fix. And the MAGA crowd will be cheering our doom all the way.

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3025 on: February 25, 2019, 09:41:23 AM »
Or a wave of presidential pardons will ensure business as usual.

BTW Eric you keep referencing 'white' I don't think you would do this if they happened to be black. There is no such thing as reverse racism, just racism. While I have no love for the people you are labelling as such I feel it detracts from your arguement.

Offline Neveesandeh

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3026 on: February 25, 2019, 11:02:04 AM »
I have to say, in spite of everything, I'm weirdly optimistic about America's (very) long term future. The demographic trends all seem to show Trump's main support base dwindling. Obviously it will be too late and I think he'll probably somehow get a second term in spite of everything, but in the long run, America is going to change, and groups like the GOP will have to change with it or be rendered irrelevant.

That said, I'm not an American, so I don't really know what I'm talking about.

Offline tebakutis

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3027 on: February 25, 2019, 04:14:49 PM »
BTW Eric you keep referencing 'white' I don't think you would do this if they happened to be black. There is no such thing as reverse racism, just racism. While I have no love for the people you are labelling as such I feel it detracts from your arguement.

I appreciate you calling me out on that, Rostum, and it's a good thing to be cautious of, especially given how politically charged the US is right now. However, for me to say that Trump's base is mainly old, racist white people isn't me generalizing. It's an unfortunate and easily provable fact.

Trump and his advisors honed the core message of his campaign (and continue to hone it even now) to appeal to a large segment of the US population who feel they've been denied the wealth and privilege their (white) parents and grandparents enjoyed, largely due to a political, legal, and financial system stacked heavily in favor of white people as a result of a long history of segregation and racism following the abolition of slavery. Many of the children and grandchildren of those who grew up enjoying that advantage over others feel their current circumstances (not as rich as their parents) are the result of non-white people getting "unfair" advantages and the United States actively discriminating against all whites (to someone born with privilege, seeing others get a fair shake feels like oppression). They see no connection to the ultra-rich screwing everyone who isn't rich over.

It is true that there are Trump supporters who aren't white (and he makes sure to put them front and center on stage, if he can find them) but they are a tiny minority by comparison. I'm not generalizing when I say a huge part of his base are racist white folks. I'm stating an unfortunate fact that came about for a number of reasons, including the United States' incredibly problematic history of slavery and segregation.

Go ahead and do a Google Image Search for "trump rally" if you'd like to see what I'm talking about. You'll find dozens of shots where you can count the non-white folks in each shot on one hand. It's just a sea of angry white people, and all of them have bought into Trump's racist message that THEY are being oppressed.

Trump's base (and the GOP's base, for that matter) are by and large white folks, and appealing to the racist nature of these people (who feel left behind by industrialization and diversity) is a huge part of his shtick. "Make American Great Again" might as well be code for "Make America White Again". Trump is telling them he wants to take things back to the 50s, when non-whites and LGBT folks knew their place, and his supporters hear that message loud and clear. They feel like THEY are being oppressed, and Trump will fix it.

For better or worse, Trump and his crew have made "being white" part of their appeal to voters, and the basis of their MAGA slogan. It's why Trump's speeches at his rallies are all laser-focused on tales of "immigrants" (non-whites) stealing the jobs of "real Americans" (white people) while bringing in drugs and killing "good Americans" (again, white folks). Trump and his flunkies (Bannon, Miller, Sanders, etc) chose this line specifically to appeal to poor white people in areas that have suffered economically, and people who are afraid of the increasing diversity in the US. And those people have responded by supporting Trump with a cultlike intensity.

"Brown people are coming to take your jobs and kill your children" is literally the rallying cry Trump is using to justify their stupid border wall to their base. It's why his supporters are okay with throwing babies in cages ... these children are "illegal immigrants" e.g. non-white. Looking at interviews with Trump supporters, you'll also notice that the vitriol Trump supporters throw at immigrants isn't directed at Russian or Canadian or Irish immigrants (light-skinned) but instead at immigrants with dark skin.

Racism (specifically the racist history of the United States, a country built on slave labor to benefit rich, white males) is built into the Trump campaign as a core plank of its appeal to its voters, which is why I think it's perfectly justified to call out that the bulk of his supporters are white and undeniably racist.

And yes, as a white man myself, it took me a long time to recognize the privilege I was born into and have enjoyed literally all my life. Fortunately, I had parents who raised me in a diverse area with diverse viewpoints, and who themselves have never subscribed to the toxic messages many of Trump's supporters grew up with. If I'd been born in a poor area and grown up with my parents telling me anyone who wasn't like me was the reason I wasn't rich and successful, I very well could be one of those morons screaming my head off at a Trump rally.

Offline Rostum

Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3028 on: February 26, 2019, 05:58:30 AM »
I am fairly sure you don't appreciate me calling you out on this and I am acutely aware of the irony of doing so.
Had we been discussing a dictatorship in Africa I still maintain you wouldn't have made the distinction had they have been black. I am aware you are correct but I don't believe you are right.





Offline ScarletBea

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Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« Reply #3029 on: February 26, 2019, 09:54:20 AM »
Is bad spelling an "ailment of the real world"?
Well, I think so.

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I just *had* to reply to the mail highlighting this...
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