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Thread: Little rants that don't deserve their own thread

  1. #9911
    Meae Musae Servus Hephaestus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinny View Post
    Why would my politics be any different to my morals?
    Morals are how you believe you should behave. Politics are how you believe people should be controlled.

    Morals -> internal
    Politics -> negotiation with the external

    Your morals will influence your political beliefs. Political pressures influence morals indirectly. But it is not a given that a person will choose to use politics to impose their morals on others--it's just foolishly common.




    Now, what I really came here to say:


    There's a ton of misused homonyms in print. In English people frequently can't tell a petal from a pedal or a peddle; the mettle from metal, medal or meddle; which of the two non-numeric too's to use; they're always asking people to get naked for a story they are apparently telling while nude (bare with me); lose track of the difference between a brake and a break; but miraculously thus far have managed to keep "their", "they're", and "there" mostly correct given that most seem to have completely given up on using the rite "yore", if you catch my drift.

    We've all more or less grown accustomed to politely ignoring such deviants--but there's a new one that I'm seeing with disturbing frequency that simply should not be tolerated. This has gone on too long--and this particular offense is making the rounds in non-casual writing environments.

    Weary, means tired, or metaphorically "tired of".

    Wary, means on edge, paranoid caution, on alert to danger.

    They are not only not interchangeable, they aren't homonyms in any dialect of English I'm aware of. "Weary" has a long "e" vowel; "wary" has a long "a" vowel. Might as well be mixing up "time" and "tome".
    People think they understand their own mortality, even when that understanding has just changed.

    --Meditations on Uncertainty Vol ξ(x)

  2. #9912
    malarkey oxyjen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hephaestus View Post
    Morals are how you believe you should behave. Politics are how you believe people should be controlled.
    .
    Society has always had social norms/morals and a way to punish those who do not conform.

    The difference is a matter of scale.

  3. #9913
    Meae Musae Servus Hephaestus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oxyjen View Post
    Society has always had social norms/morals and a way to punish those who do not conform.

    The difference is a matter of scale.
    Right. I would call those "ethics" which are public and about public control of individuals. Ethics are the realm of politics and explicitly concerned with public perception and adherence. A moral compass is personal. Morals are about personal control over oneself; not public.
    People think they understand their own mortality, even when that understanding has just changed.

    --Meditations on Uncertainty Vol ξ(x)

  4. #9914
    Hasta Siempre Madrigal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thoth View Post
    We can go into nuance of course, but saying I believe states ideological bias, which quickly becomes slippery slope.

    For example, I make no bones that I consider your personal professed politics... lacking... to be polite, but that doesn't mean I think you an immoral or good person. We simply disagree in politics and their objectives.

    I am certainly not without bias, but judging all people with stars on their bellies differently than those without is frankly, ignorant.

    Walling one's self off in a comfortable shelter of egoism casting dispersions based on assumptions because they don't agree with their race/gender/politics/religion/sports teams/taste in cinema/etc is not intellectualism. That's not belief, it is fact.
    Prejudice is an important part of survival. While, yes, it sacrifices nuance, it also helps you make quick judgements before getting yourself into a lot of trouble. This applies to anything from crossing the street when you see someone that's acting weird, to deciding not to go on that second date, to deciding not to engage someone who's signalling - in just a few words - a configuration of reprehensible political opinions.

    I like this analogy: reprehensible political opinions are like cockroaches. If you have one, there's probably a lot more where that came from. Why? Because politics is a cosmovision. (And yes, we all have one.) Despite the inevitable cracks and contradictions, political views tend to have an internal consistency. It means that if a person believes one thing, it's quite likely they believe another correlated thing. Take that further and it also means that when you believe one thing, you are likely to act in a certain way under certain circumstances. You have a certain predictability. Predicting behaviors around you is survival.

    Yet, like I said, contradictions plague us all. And while flawlessness is what we often strive for - the perfect correspondence between words and deeds - I still think it's one of the things that makes us human, and can be interesting, beautiful and confounding. That part of us that escaped configuration, the part that rebels. It always makes me gasp a bit when I see something beautiful where it shouldn't be, or something monstrous where you wouldn't suspect. That includes people. We need to understand and apply patterns, though, we need that to choose who we can count on. I have, in the past, chosen to see the exception and not the rule in people. This does not usually go well - they will let you down.
    Quote Originally Posted by Hephaestus View Post
    Heh. We've been here years now.

  5. #9915
    Hasta Siempre Madrigal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sloth View Post
    When more people recognize that they aren't that far off from every other person on the planet, even the evil ones (and are therefore capable of that same evil under different circumstances), we might be better able to find real solutions to these things.
    We literally don't have the time for the kind of universal reconciliation you're suggesting, even if it were possible. Unfortunately, the only thing there is time for is winning or losing. A lot of the consequences of powerful people's greed, evil or stupidity are extremely time-sensitive.

    Hunger is time-sensitive. Danger is time-sensitive. The creeping destruction of both people and nature is time-sensitive. There is damage that cannot be undone, primarily when referring to an affected person's lifespan, but also when speaking of the planet and the human race itself. This is why I'm always amazed at people who speak in terms of long eras of gradual change, referring to centuries into the future, over which we'll solve the pressing problems of today once we've all become more aware and conscientious. Make no mistake; they speak from a position of privilege, because pressing problems, for those who have them, must be resolved immediately. (Setting aside the fact that "becoming better humans" as a whole is simply impossible while certain obstacles persist, and removing those obstacles can only be done after a lot of pain... that is a very long discussion.)

    To me a solution isn't to plant seeds of future evil by creating new hostilities with other people over politics, a facebook unfriending today could grow into being someone's great-grandson throwing a molotov-cocktail into a family's home.

    It might sound like a stretch, but it seems to me like most of the world's ugliest conflicts snowballed out of some really dumb shit.
    Political animosity is passed down over the generations not out of habit but because conflicts haven't been resolved.
    Quote Originally Posted by Hephaestus View Post
    Heh. We've been here years now.

  6. #9916
    Faster. Than. Ever. Sloth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinny View Post
    Lol.
    This is one of those times where laughing at me will actually get me start a rant I didn't feel like going on.

    This isn't something I've thought critically about in nearly 10 years, and back when I did, I thought of things like a political scientist. Nowadays I think about things like a production designer, and this has actually totally changed the way I go about analyzing large complicated systems. So making my mind mind return to this now I see it much more through the lens of what would probably be considered the humanities much more than the lens of political science proper.

    In other words, it gave me a type of bottom up realization that I previously hadn't had -- before I would look at it from the present day (like current politics and policy issues) and then go backwards towards the past to piece together context, and apply present day to what happened to the past. But now thinking about it, I instantly started analyzing it the other way around --- I started to think of the past first, then move forwards all the while considered everything else that could influence politics first (like culture, technological developments, famines, extreme weather, ect.) and think of what has evolved as a result of that out of necessity, and then starting thinking of how your structure ended up, and then begin to think about how present politics and policy within that structure are the byproduct of those things.

    That might sound elementary too, but that's about all of that rant I feel like going on right now.


    Why would my politics be any different to my morals?
    Because of my point earlier --- sometimes political stances are created to seem like they align with a certain morality, but if you "read the fine print" on a lot of what gets tossed around at the upper levels of government, even on the side you agree with, your stomach would likely turn more often than you'd realize.

    I'm not saying that you as an individual don't invest time learning about the causes or issues, or that you aren't smart enough to understand them even if you made it your full time job to just read the policies that are being proposed, I'm saying that it is a full time job to understand what's really going on (there's a reason that politicians have lawyers on their team just to read these things for them (they're each novel sized, and there's hundreds floating around all the time), and they have a team of people helping them figure out what to say about them, and yet the average person is arrogant enough to think they have it all figured out to a degree that they're willing to disrupt their personal lives over it).

    Agreed, which is why so many idiots now spout "alt-right" ideology, as the alt-right propoganda machine excited their puney brains.
    Yes, but this principle can be applied to any end of the political spectrum. All sides have dangerous extremists.


    Personally, I just don't people who say they "don't get" politics or that they "don't feel strongly about politics".
    On the contrary, I'd say peoplesy political opinions are mostly informed/formed by what the people are living.
    I find it interesting that you make these statements close together in your post but don't seem to see their relation.

    I'm not going to sit here and say that my story is typical, because I don't think it is. I would agree with you that there are a lot of people out there that ignore politics because they are brain dead sheep, that's just an observable truth.

    But I don't think you should jump the gun and assume that about everyone politically apathetic. I reached my political apathy because of how I lived too.

    To give it further context, I was working on a U.S. Senate campaign out of an office in one of the most contested battleground states, and in one of the most battleground areas of that state the I-4 corridor.

    I met lawmakers, I met their campaign managers, I lived and breathed politics for several years. It was my full time job, even while I was a full time student. I worked crazy hours even back then.

    All that work, and in one of the few areas of the country that's actually considered to be a place where you can make a big difference. You know what radiated through my bones towards the end of it? There is nothing I can do. Devoting my life to this will be a waste of what my mind can do.

    Again, as I said before, I recognize that attitude would be a problem for every person to have. It's the people that vote, and even if they're voting uninformed, that is still better than not being able to vote at all.

    Politics = Power.

    And when peopy tell me they aren't that into who hold the power, it really confuses me. Seems like so many people are happy to disengage and sleepwalk through their predetermined lives (John Carpenter's They Live).
    It's funny to me that you actually referenced a movie to emphasize your point because I was going to point out that the government is only one influence of power on your life. The world is a lot bigger than it used to be, the biggest metropolis' of the world used to only have a few thousand people, and today that's considered a small town. There are lots and lots of different influences of power flowing through our everyday lives, the government is just one of them because thankfully neither of us live under a dictatorship (Trump jokes aside....).


    Well, I agree that everybody should be open to having their opinions & perceptions challenged.

    But as a democratic socialist, I'm not sure exactly what policies.kr ideologies of mine could be classed as "dangerous".

    I'm opposed to warfare & genocide (unlike the war mongers & arms sellers I hate so much).

    I'm always open to having my convictions challenged, but I can't see anybody ever convincing me that starving millions of Yemenis and enclosing thousands of Palestinians in a glorified cage is ever going to be morally or legally justifiable (for example). Or anyone convincing me that trickle down economics ever works.. the reality is that the poor get poorer whilst the dish get richer. To all of this I am opposed, and I don't think it should take a thesis to understand why.
    Any belief system held strongly enough can get dangerous. It might not happen overnight. It might not even happen within several generations of it beginning, but things build on each other and get skewed over time. Complex ideologies tend to be a bit of a house of cards in the sense that they're a reaction to present day circumstances, but another reason that policy is so inherently slippery is because present day circumstances are literally changing everyday.

    By the time a certain policy is drafted, it could be obsolete. Meanwhile we're still arguing about things that were introduced years ago.


    I believe in evil too,.but I don't think it fair to compare regular jackasses (like myself) with those I perceive as "evil".

    You can see the evil in some people's eyes. (Take Hillary Clinton or Tony Blair). It's has been said that the eyes are the windows to one's soul.
    This kind of goes back to the idea of things snowballing though. Maybe you're just a regular jackass, but what if they other person you're talking to is walking the line of regular jackass and evil. And what if your jackassishness tipped them to the evil side? How does that fit in your morality?

    ^Despite that particular series of "what ifs", to be clear, I don't think we should all be fluffy bunnies either, but rather my point is that people could stand to put more thought into the far reaching effects of their actions than they seem to normally do, and especially with politics since it seems to be so sensitive to people.

  7. #9917
    Faster. Than. Ever. Sloth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Madrigal View Post
    Unfortunately, the only thing there is time for is winning or losing.
    In a lot of the extreme cases yes, and in some cases no. It's easy for me to sit here without thinking of specific examples and say that kind of philosophy, of course. lol

    You'll see below that I actually agree with most of what you're saying, but there will always be value in outside the box thinking, and that would include the possibility of something beyond those two things.

    A lot of the consequences of powerful people's greed, evil or stupidity are extremely time-sensitive.

    Hunger is time-sensitive. Danger is time-sensitive. The creeping destruction of both people and nature is time-sensitive. There is damage that cannot be undone, primarily when referring to an affected person's lifespan, but also when speaking of the planet and the human race itself. This is why I'm always amazed at people who speak in terms of long eras of gradual change, referring to centuries into the future, over which we'll solve the pressing problems of today once we've all become more aware and conscientious. Make no mistake; they speak from a position of privilege, because pressing problems, for those who have them, must be resolved immediately. (Setting aside the fact that "becoming better humans" as a whole is simply impossible while certain obstacles persist, and removing those obstacles can only be done after a lot of pain... that is a very long discussion.)
    Aaannddd this why I went running and screaming into the Arts with two peace signs on my stomach

    I have a lot of admiration for people that have it in them to "push the button" so to speak. I do recognize there is some serious momentum behind some of the worlds most horrifying problems, and there is no other way around it than the hard way.

    I also think it's a good thing that most people don't have it in them to "push the button" either though (but again, I'm not advocating large scale apathy in spite of that). It's good that most people don't have it in them because if someone does but doesn't have a healthy outlet for that, I think that by itself would put someone in the danger zone for getting tipped into doing evil things. I recognize that in this post I'm being super vague and in reality I think people suited for that possess a number of the same traits.

    I guess where I'm going with this is that sometimes political apathy is a weirdly positive sign that things are going well, but as you say --- it's privilege in the sense that you get feel that way because the worst problems aren't at your doorstep. Large scale apathy is a problem because we have some large scale problems.

    I think people should engage in the political process and find out for themselves how involved they want to be, it would probably separate the wheat from the chaff a bit (or rather the people that feel called to it from the people who don't). I had a bad experience, but I'm a certifiable weirdo and the entire world would fall apart of 7 billion me's were walking around (though I think the latter is true for everyone, which is why it's important that we have a variety of people walking around).


    Political animosity is passed down over the generations not out of habit but because conflicts haven't been resolved.
    Maybe I didn't word it well because this is what I meant. Those conflicts built over the generations, I just swapped the word conflict for pain. They aren't the same thing but I believe them to be necessarily related.

  8. #9918
    Moderator Thoth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Madrigal View Post
    Prejudice is an important part of survival. While, yes, it sacrifices nuance, it also helps you make quick judgements before getting yourself into a lot of trouble. This applies to anything from crossing the street when you see someone that's acting weird, to deciding not to go on that second date, to deciding not to engage someone who's signalling - in just a few words - a configuration of reprehensible political opinions.

    I like this analogy: reprehensible political opinions are like cockroaches. If you have one, there's probably a lot more where that came from. Why? Because politics is a cosmovision. (And yes, we all have one.) Despite the inevitable cracks and contradictions, political views tend to have an internal consistency. It means that if a person believes one thing, it's quite likely they believe another correlated thing. Take that further and it also means that when you believe one thing, you are likely to act in a certain way under certain circumstances. You have a certain predictability. Predicting behaviors around you is survival.

    Yet, like I said, contradictions plague us all. And while flawlessness is what we often strive for - the perfect correspondence between words and deeds - I still think it's one of the things that makes us human, and can be interesting, beautiful and confounding. That part of us that escaped configuration, the part that rebels. It always makes me gasp a bit when I see something beautiful where it shouldn't be, or something monstrous where you wouldn't suspect. That includes people. We need to understand and apply patterns, though, we need that to choose who we can count on. I have, in the past, chosen to see the exception and not the rule in people. This does not usually go well - they will let you down.
    I see, prejudice is necessary, even healthy.

    So, what about racial prejudice? If purple people see green people undercut their livelihoods, then it's ok to genocide the green people because, survival?

    Exactly what about maintaining prejudices for survival is say... Socialist, or even Communist?

    Is prejudice only dismissible as long as they prescribe to your ideology?

    That's authoritarianism, the byproduct of living by an ideology.

  9. #9919
    Cooler than Jesus
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    Speaking of reprehensible politics opinions, it seems like 90% of the people getting getting radicalized to the left in the US are becoming Stalinists or Maoists. I’m guessing because we have no actual history of leftism or real leftist leaders here.

  10. #9920
    schlemiel Faust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NedLudd View Post
    Speaking of reprehensible politics opinions, it seems like 90% of the people getting getting radicalized to the left in the US are becoming Stalinists or Maoists. I’m guessing because we have no actual history of leftism or real leftist leaders here.
    Not unless you count anarchism in the 19th and early 20th century. I'm not sure what the landscape is like among young people since graduating years ago (back then feminism and you-men-the-oppressors was the primary obsession), but I will say that certain glorified safe-space left-leaning discussion groups related to my country show nothing but contempt for places that aren't walled gardens.
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