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The US Primary Election System.
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4966
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Kirk's right. This is not a political forum


I am not quite sure where Kirk said this but I get the point. Its cute the way you ensure you get the last word politically though before stating this!

I just want to make clear though that I don't hate rich people or Americans and have no 'class issues'. My disagreement is with the right of centre libertarian political views you frequently espouse here. Your idiosyncratic and dogmatic views on global warming for example (which is very political!) which you have shared with us all on more than one occasion on skyscript.

All I ask is that you practice what you preach in future on this forum and I will ensure I keep away from any political comments too.
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Tom
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Joined: 11 Oct 2003
Posts: 3491
Location: New Jersey, USA

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I deleted Kirks's rant and my remark was intended to be sarcastic not a white flag. Nor was it aimed at you.

Quote:
I just want to make clear though that I don't hate rich people or Americans and have no 'class issues'. My disagreement is with the right of centre libertarian political views you frequently espouse here. Your idiosyncratic and dogmatic views on global warming for example (which is very political!) which you have shared with us all on more than one occasion on skyscript.


I am far less dogmatic than most. There is a difference between dogmatism and knowledgeable belief.

If you don't want political viewpoints expressed, don't express any. I never said you had a problem with Americans, much less hate them, but you did say you had a problem with the system and your problem was based on financial considerations of individuals and that is fine. Lots of Americans would agree with you. I defended the system. If that is right of center, so be it. I'm not afraid of labels. But for the sake of accuracy, I am not a libertarian. Conservatives and libertarians do share some common views, though.

I never said you hated anyone.

All global warming viewpoints are political, pro and con. Denying that is well denial. It's a political issue despite the scientific trappings each side tries to present. One side wants to expand government the other wants to check it. "Global warming" is the pawn. The idea of "sceintific consensus" is a joke. Consensus is the antithesis of science.

And my global warming remark was more to demonstrate the "hit and run" technique. And I specifically said that. I hate to put it this way but you brought up global warming. I didn't. "Global warming denying" were your words. You can accept man made global warming as a fact if you wish. No one else is required to do so, especially when there is no proof.

You don't have to like the system either. But I will never understand how someone can disapprove of something, voice their opinion, then complain when they get a response that disagrees with their position.

Let's just drop the subject.

Tom
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###



Joined: 08 Jul 2004
Posts: 1380

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2008 6:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I deleted Kirks's rant and my remark was intended to be sarcastic not a white flag. Nor was it aimed at you.

...

Let's just drop the subject.

NO. Let’s not, just yet.

My “rant” lasted online maybe as long as 3 or 4 minutes before being deleted. It was right before Tom’s current “Kirk's right. This is not a political forum”.When I saw his remark that this is not a political forum I thought Tom was being sincere, so to help smooth things out I offered him my thanks for the primaries information – which truly could be helpful to astrologers. I decided to say nothing about the deletion of my post. Well, congratulations Tom. You fooled me. As he points out in his boast, his comment about it not being a political forum “was intended to be sarcastic not a white flag”. [Are white flags a sign of weakness?] He admits to making sarcastic remarks after deleting a member’s post. Doesn’t this sound just a little bit ugly?

As I pointed out in my “rant”: in giving us the primaries info, Tom gave himself the right and privilege to take shots at those who don’t agree with him politically. He just couldn’t give the information without opinion, as we’ve seen countless times before. Trouble is – he’s a moderator. That apparently means he can get away with it and in the meantime delete the posts of other members. It’s rigged in his favor. And he gets to sneer and make sarcastic remarks while deleting them.
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sasha_i



Joined: 06 Apr 2005
Posts: 288
Location: Bucuresti

Posted: Sun Jan 20, 2008 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
He just couldn’t give the information without opinion,


That's not true.

There is no absolut objective information. There is only somebody's objective point of view. It's a trap to consider that there is the possibility to present only the facts without the perspective of the one that is presenting the facts. That's the reality not theory.
We can only request someone to be honest, and sincere in its presentation, not to try to manipulate, but that's another story.
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4966
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Mon Jan 21, 2008 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Let's just drop the subject.


I note you make this comment after firing off another series of broadsides my way. You seem to want to make misrepresentations of my position and then declare time. You can’t have it both ways.

Quote:
I am far less dogmatic than most.


I am not sure what criteria you are basing this on? Judging by my experience of this site over the last 3 ½ years I find that very hard to accept. You don’t just have beliefs. You defend them like your life depended upon them and those disagreeing were your opponents in a gladiatorial ring. Your reference to not putting up a ‘white flag’ is revealing. Debating with you often feels like a war without weapons.

Still I must admit I always find the people with passion the most interesting on forums like this so that isn’t necessarily a bad thing at all. I would rather have that than some of the foggy , incoherent, half baked posts you sometimes see here.

As a well informed poster /contributor you do undeniably contribute an awful lot here which I think everyone on skyscript benefits from. The dilemma though is you are also a Moderator too. That sometimes calls for a totally different skill set ie detachment/neutrality to serve as the Umpire/Referee. That doesn’t seem like one of your strengths to me. Others are entitled to disagree of course!

It’s a times like this I really miss Sue and her role as a Moderator. She provided an excellent balance to you and it seemed you could both passionately disagree without antagonizing each other.

However, the precise context of my use of the word dogmatic was in reference to your views on global warming…see below.

Quote:
There is a difference between dogmatism and knowledgeable belief.


Lets check out a dictionary definition of dogma:

a: something held as an established opinion; especially : a definite authoritative tenet

b: a code of such tenets; pedagogical dogma

c: a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds2: a doctrine or body of doctrines concerning faith or morals formally stated and authoritatively proclaimed by a church

It seems to me you often fall into definition a) a lot more than most here.

I have to credit you though Tom that’s an excellent line. I must remember that one as it seems to perfectly encapsulate the perspective of the dignified fixed sign debater. The implication seems to be that contrary viewpoints are simply not informed enough? Isn’t it possible to be as well informed (or even more so) and take a totally opposed view of things? Surely, that’s the basis of democracy? Alternatively, if you accept your opponents are equally well informed how can we be so sure they are ‘wrong’.


Quote:
If you don't want political viewpoints expressed, don't express any. ….. I will never understand how someone can disapprove of something, voice their opinion, then complain when they get a response that disagrees with their position.


You seem to be implying I am running away from something I started. That’s quite disingenuous. I never tried to close the debate..you did..remember? In fact you have just done it again. Personally, I would be happy to debate this out with you for weeks to come. However, you pointed out this was not a place to discuss politics. Do make your mind up.

Actually, if you had come in with a comment like that on my original post I would have been content to accept that as your role as a Moderator. It rings a little hollow now though. It’s a bit like a meat eater advocating ethical vegetarianism.

In reality it appears it was just a tactic to ensure you got your views over as the final word. Ok if you want to play petty point scoring games go ahead.

Quote:
you did say you had a problem with the system and your problem was based on financial considerations of individuals and that is fine. Lots of Americans would agree with you. I defended the system. If that is right of center, so be it. I'm not afraid of labels. But for the sake of accuracy, I am not a libertarian. Conservatives and libertarians do share some common views, though.


Ok then that’s fine. I assumed your inherent scepticism about state intervention would make you a libertarian but if prefer the label Conservative that’s up to you.

Quote:
I hate to put it this way but you brought up global warming. I didn't


On this thread yes..on skyscript no. You have expressed your view that global warming is not caused by human activity before here.

"
Quote:
Global warming denying" were your words.


Correct. However, the context was not about you, I was referring to the position George Bush originally adopted when he was first elected.

Quote:
You can accept man made global warming as a fact if you wish. No one else is required to do so, especially when there is no proof. … All global warming viewpoints are political, pro and con. Denying that is well denial. It's a political issue despite the scientific trappings each side tries to present. One side wants to expand government the other wants to check it. "Global warming" is the pawn. The idea of "sceintific consensus" is a joke. Consensus is the antithesis of science.



There are three alternatives to explaining global warming

a) Its entirely due to human activity
b) Its entirely caused by natural factors outside human control.
c) Its caused by a combination of both ( the emphasis on which is greater varies)

I assume you have decided to adopt position b) or an agnostic one that as there is no unanimous agreement nothing should be done. I agree there are a few scientists who have posited other explanations other than human activity. Solar activity and the effect of cosmic rays from supernovae have been proposed. The Earth’s climate is incredibly complex and I doubt it easily reduces to any simplistic analysis. Nevertheless, the overwhelming majority of climate scientists have suggested human activity is a significant factor in generating global warming. Several UN reports have now reiterated this.

While there are political implications inherent in this issue its seems rather blinkered to see this as just an another argument about state intervention with ‘global warming’ as a political football. In the worst case scenario we are discussing nothing less than the sustainability of human life on this planet.

For people advocating the ‘do nothing’ approach like you the question is what if you are wrong? Can we really afford to wait until there is 100% evidence that global warming is significantly influenced by human activity? Many of us believe not because if that happens the effects will be largely irreversible. In fact some changes already are. Its like trying to slow down an oil tanker that is half a mile long. Most scientists and policy makers now seem to accept the importance of the precautionary principle i.e. we simply cannot afford the awful risk of doing nothing.

Hand on heart are you not being more influenced by your resentment of the state regulation that the implications of global warming may necessitate? This isn’t socialism by the back door. In the face of a challenge as immense as this we need greater co-operation between citizens and nations. That will inevitably necessitate more regulation and targets for sustainable energy and low carbon economics. Hardly music to the ears of conservatives like you I accept.

America is a vital player in terms of its environmental impact and its influence internationally. Unless it joins the rest of the world in committing to emission targets like Europe, Japan, Australia etc there is little hope of convincing the new booming economies in China and India.

Moreover, we live in a world where the lungs of the world -the hardwood trees in Amazonia, Equatorial Africa and SE Asia are worth more dead than alive. Our ecomomic thinking needs to be based on a longer term perspective than just the immediate profit motive.

We can discuss Democrat vs Republican but in the long term the most important political issue internationally (along with general foreign policy) is whether the USA elects a President committed to tackling climate change or not.

Mark


Last edited by Mark on Mon Jan 21, 2008 6:04 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Mark
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Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4966
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Mon Jan 21, 2008 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kirk states:

Quote:
He just couldn’t give the information without opinion,



Sasha replies:

That's not true.

There is no absolut objective information. There is only somebody's objective point of view. It's a trap to consider that there is the possibility to present only the facts without the perspective of the one that is presenting the facts. That's the reality not theory.

'
I think its only fair to point out you are putting forward a theory too which the philosophers call Anti-Realism. In other words there is no objective truth. Otherwise known as relativism. Its a respectable position but lots of people would not agree with you....Christians, Muslims, Marxists , Darwinians, also some Astrologers I suspect. Religions rely on a subjective experience which is believed to connect the individual to a wider objective reality. Darwinism or Marxism rely on all encompassing theories to explain factors in the phenomenal world. For many people 'the truth is out there' or within you........

The issue is very interesting in regards to science. Is there any scientific 'truth' that is generally acceptable or is everything relativist/provisional? Thinkers such as Thomas Kuhn and Karl Popper ended up at opposite ends of this debate.
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sasha_i



Joined: 06 Apr 2005
Posts: 288
Location: Bucuresti

Posted: Mon Jan 21, 2008 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
In other words there is no objective truth. Otherwise known as relativism


Relativism but more existentialism don’t imply the lack of objective truth.

I think that there is an objective truth, otherwise it would be in vain to talk about responsibilities. The fact is that we humans, can’t express it without manifesting also our relative and personal experience and limitation (in other words without being subjective in one or another way-it’s in our nature).

Regarding Christians (I am a Christian too so I have some personal insight) as much as I remember Christ never give to the world some instructions for a specific political organization of a nation, or country. On contrary I could say that He was interested in the development of individuals. It’s the old story with the roman coin.

The whole issue in my opinion is that the problem is not the limitation which is in the nature of our life and world; the problem lies in the fact that humans lost their appetite for perfection. Today we see only the appetite for extremism, for extravagance.

From this perspective I saw Tom’s commentary about American political system. He mentioned somewhere that this system is not perfect but it seemed at least for me that he wanted to express that it has the potential, if the citizens, members of that system want to and act in consequence, to accomplish the needs of that nation
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SGFoxe



Joined: 13 Apr 2006
Posts: 261
Location: Chicago, IL

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 5:56 pm    Post subject: View from the 48th Ward Reply with quote

The Chief, Cook County, Battle Watcher

The internecine Cook County (Chicago) pol line ups vis a vis is of excrutiating interest to an old time hard core political addict such as myself. Hillary was conceived and born a block west & 1.5 north from where I sit, Barack a law professor at my alma mater.

As for Barack's virgin birth -- well, if his birthdate is August 4 1961, it is likely that he was conceived some 9 solar months prior on November 4, 1960 -- given the utopian coupling of his idealistic parents, probably in celebration of JFK's election ...

And Caroline jumped on the Obamarama in the wake of his South Carolina victory yesterday, and Unka Ted is testing the waters.

Obama's much more quotable than either Hillary or Bill -- I've been using his transformative agent of change phrase --

Hillary's never publicly acknowledged that she was born in Chicago's 48th Ward -- Edgewater Hospital -- she's raised money here at Feminist Bookstore Women & Children First, peddling her books, but somehow never thought about inviting the Alderwoman or the CD's Congressional Rep (another broad soldier) -- nor has she had the inclination or wit, to host a general fundraiser under the aegis of the Cook County Democratic Women -- she seems to be allergic to other women elected to political position -- she should have gotten some significant legislation branded with her name in the 8 years she's been warming a chair in the Senate. Hillary can't really cut it & her husband, the former POTUS, can't campaign with his fly zipped

3rd Precinct, 48th Ward
Chicago
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