anthony

nastiness abounds

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Nope, I don't mean on OL. :rolleyes:

It's something that I've been noting increasingly in recent years - not just confined to where I live, either.

It can be any country.

Standards of inter-human contact are dropping, past disturbing, to alarming - basic respect, self-discipline, forebearance, courtesy (you add the rest) have diminished; self-entitlement, senseless arrogance, contempt, and narcissism, all increased.

Is this what 'democracy', human rights, compassion, and Oprah Winfrey have perpetrated?

I'm trying to figure out the exact corellation between society and politics.

Sure, heavy-handed Statism can be blamed - and in my neck of the woods, it has moved from nannyism, to dictatorial power - but what comes first? Does the politician answer to the people, or does he command them? IOW, we get what we ask for.

That's a by-the-way.

What 'we' asked for sometime in the past 50 years, was a world devoid of war and filled with tolerance and brotherliness - universal love.

Somehow, the remaining quota of objective standards (admittedly, mixed with conservatism) in my parents' era got washed away in the quest, and we now have lots of smaller wars, covert discrimination and hatred.

Two or three generations of "political correctness" have entrenched subjective values.

I notice this in the malls, on the roads, in the news and the internet: I am here, get out my way. Insanity everywhere, with a petty and greedy selfishness that is not in the least a recognizable self-ness.

(What irony, that Objectivism catches flak on this.)

It has made me vividly aware and thankful of the ultimate benevolence of Objectivism - in the last resort, it could be all that prevents me from consuming nastiness, myself.

Tony

(Part-rant, but I invite comments.)

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Tony:

I also observe an increase in a lack of civility, common decency and public acting out on the part of too many individuals.

I struggle with whether we are just being exposed to more of this due to the technological explosion of information, or, whether it reflects a real degeneration of humanity.

Adam

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Tony:

I also observe an increase in a lack of civility, common decency and public acting out on the part of too many individuals.

I struggle with whether we are just being exposed to more of this due to the technological explosion of information, or, whether it reflects a real degeneration of humanity.

Adam

Adam,

Good: I'm not dreaming this, then.

The tech part has been on my mind, and I wonder if it's a cause, or an effect. I tend towards the effect, but not mutually exclusively. Could be, instant access, abbreviated communication, and simple anonymity have taken their toll.

Against this, is what should be greater understanding and knowledge - human similarity - the internet brings.

Reality would be of a higher concern then.

Still, I can't get away from the universal basic premises I mentioned that indicate a huge loss of rationality and goodwill.

Tony

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Tony, I'm not saying your observations are wrong, but you may be sub-consciously re-enforcing them feedback-wise making the general situation worse from your own perspective. However, I think you live in South Africa where things aren't so nice, to say the least.

--Brant

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What bothers me a lot is the lack of responsibility some people feel as citizens of a community. Many, as they walk down the street, don't even bother to throw their waste into bins. Instead they let the stuff they don't need anymore, like e. g. chewing gum, plop on the ground like a cow pat.

Then there's the vandalization of public property, like e. g. the destroying of phone booths.

Edited by Xray

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Tony, I'm not saying your observations are wrong, but you may be sub-consciously re-enforcing them feedback-wise making the general situation worse from your own perspective. However, I think you live in South Africa where things aren't so nice, to say the least.

--Brant

Brant,

Fair comment. It takes every bit of perspective and objectivity I have to halt despondency and pessimism about this godforsaken country.

When I read about your problems in the US, I empathize (where's Xray?), but I think - if they only knew how far down a nation can go! It is unmentionable in polite company, and you'd hardly believe me, anyway.

Over and above that - and given that a little of bitterness remains - I've travelled to Europe and found only a degree of improvement. (Yes, you takes yourself with you, wherever you go <_< ). Also, I view the media, (worked for some, too) and see the same moral greyness and insanity worldwide.

To add, I'm not unrealistic, I don't think, and I take heart from the shining light of individual people in the most modest circumstances.

Tony

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Tony, I'm not saying your observations are wrong, but you may be sub-consciously re-enforcing them feedback-wise making the general situation worse from your own perspective. However, I think you live in South Africa where things aren't so nice, to say the least.

--Brant

Brant,

Fair comment. It takes every bit of perspective and objectivity I have to halt despondency and pessimism about this godforsaken country.

When I read about your problems in the US, I empathize (where's Xray?), but I think - if they only knew how far down a nation can go! It is unmentionable in polite company, and you'd hardly believe me, anyway.

Over and above that - and given that a little of bitterness remains - I've travelled to Europe and found only a degree of improvement. (Yes, you takes yourself with you, wherever you go <_< ). Also, I view the media, (worked for some, too) and see the same moral greyness and insanity worldwide.

To add, I'm not unrealistic, I don't think, and I take heart from the shining light of individual people in the most modest circumstances.

Tony

Angela is in Germany.

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Tony, I'm not saying your observations are wrong, but you may be sub-consciously re-enforcing them feedback-wise making the general situation worse from your own perspective. However, I think you live in South Africa where things aren't so nice, to say the least.

--Brant

Brant,

Fair comment. It takes every bit of perspective and objectivity I have to halt despondency and pessimism about this godforsaken country.

When I read about your problems in the US, I empathize (where's Xray?), but I think - if they only knew how far down a nation can go! It is unmentionable in polite company, and you'd hardly believe me, anyway.

Over and above that - and given that a little of bitterness remains - I've travelled to Europe and found only a degree of improvement. (Yes, you takes yourself with you, wherever you go <_< ). Also, I view the media, (worked for some, too) and see the same moral greyness and insanity worldwide.

To add, I'm not unrealistic, I don't think, and I take heart from the shining light of individual people in the most modest circumstances.

Tony

Angela is in Germany.

Oh, no - I knew that. It was the 'empathy' comment, I was showing off to her. :P

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Just a random video, but this is the kind of thing I regard as nasty:

And what is at the root of this is not the nastiness exhibited by the officer. It's the nastiness of the entire system that will not (or only rarely) punish this kind of insane abuse of force. Why does this happen? Because people don't care about what is right and what is wrong. Why don't they care? Because, they are taught, there is no right and wrong, there's only opinions and preference. And that is the root of why people are getting more and more vicious. Everything's a matter of self-centered opinion, so the natural response of the human animal that believes that is to force their own self-centered desires upon everyone else.

Shayne

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Shayne,

People actually are doing something in this case.

According to the video, the case is going before a grand jury and the officer is on leave while the investigation is ongoing. I predict a pretty severe punishment for one stupid-ass police-lady, along with losing her job. Sounds like there was a royal screw-up and this woman should never have been bearing firearms in the name of the government in the first place.

Like the reporter said, half a dozen onlookers were dodging bullets while the hapless officer kept firing and missing at the friendly, but overly-enthusiastic dog. One even said, "She really needs to learn how to shoot a gun."

That's really out there when you hear that about a police officer. This is almost like a scene out of a comedy movie if it were not for the shrapnel embedded in the innocent lady's collarbone.

Michael

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What bothers me a lot is the lack of responsibility some people feel as citizens of a community. Many, as they walk down the street, don't even bother to throw their waste into bins. Instead they let the stuff they don't need anymore, like e. g. chewing gum, plop on the ground like a cow pat.

Now just a cotton pickin’ minute. I thought you were from Munich or thereabouts. I’ve been there maybe 4 times. That is such a clean city, I’ve never seen litter there, or gum on the sidewalk. Once, only once, I went into the elevator that takes you from the subway to street level, I think it was in Odeonplatz, and there was puke on the floor. This was after midnight, and obviously some American or British tourist had had too much to drink. And mind you, it was really fresh puke, I bet the cleaning crew was there within minutes.

Then there's the vandalization of public property, like e. g. the destroying of phone booths.

Where do you find a phone booth nowadays?

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What bothers me a lot is the lack of responsibility some people feel as citizens of a community. Many, as they walk down the street, don't even bother to throw their waste into bins. Instead they let the stuff they don't need anymore, like e. g. chewing gum, plop on the ground like a cow pat.

Then there's the vandalization of public property, like e. g. the destroying of phone booths.

Mmm,

Chewing gum on the pavement!! Shocking.

That puts my angst in perspective.

(Sounds like an Irish version of the Chinese curse: "May you live in terribly boring times.")

Tony

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Shayne,

People actually are doing something in this case.

According to the video, the case is going before a grand jury and the officer is on leave while the investigation is ongoing. I predict a pretty severe punishment for one stupid-ass police-lady, along with losing her job. Sounds like there was a royal screw-up and this woman should never have been bearing firearms in the name of the government in the first place.

Like the reporter said, half a dozen onlookers were dodging bullets while the hapless officer kept firing and missing at the friendly, but overly-enthusiastic dog. One even said, "She really needs to learn how to shoot a gun."

That's really out there when you hear that about a police officer. This is almost like a scene out of a comedy movie if it were not for the shrapnel embedded in the innocent lady's collarbone.

Michael

Maybe the system will do the right thing in this case this time, maybe it won't. It's unpredictable.

Shayne

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Just a random video, but this is the kind of thing I regard as nasty:

And what is at the root of this is not the nastiness exhibited by the officer. It's the nastiness of the entire system that will not (or only rarely) punish this kind of insane abuse of force. Why does this happen? Because people don't care about what is right and what is wrong. Why don't they care? Because, they are taught, there is no right and wrong, there's only opinions and preference. And that is the root of why people are getting more and more vicious. Everything's a matter of self-centered opinion, so the natural response of the human animal that believes that is to force their own self-centered desires upon everyone else.

Shayne

Shayne,

I suppose that any vibrant society will have these inexplicable abberations.

It's when they (shootings by police officers of innocents) start becoming 'too' common (as one aspect of S.A.living) that one questions the underlying premises.

Is nastiness a symptom of a flawed philosophy? Null philosophy?

As you put it: Everything's a matter of self-centred opinion.

I tend to agree.

Tony

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What bothers me a lot is the lack of responsibility some people feel as citizens of a community. Many, as they walk down the street, don't even bother to throw their waste into bins. Instead they let the stuff they don't need anymore, like e. g. chewing gum, plop on the ground like a cow pat.

Now just a cotton pickin’ minute. I thought you were from Munich or thereabouts. I’ve been there maybe 4 times. That is such a clean city, I’ve never seen litter there, or gum on the sidewalk. Once, only once, I went into the elevator that takes you from the subway to street level, I think it was in Odeonplatz, and there was puke on the floor. This was after midnight, and obviously some American or British tourist had had too much to drink. And mind you, it was really fresh puke, I bet the cleaning crew was there within minutes.

Munich is indeed a comparatively clean city, effectively run by a well-functioning administration.

Also, the area around Odeonsplatz is frequented a lot by tourists, therefore your bet about the cleaning crew being there soon is probably correct. ;)

But one could argue that cleaning crews constantly picking up after the citizens are like indulging parents picking up after their spoiled children. That way, the children don't learn responsibility, instead they learn that they don't have to bother because it s someone else's job.

Then there's the vandalization of public property, like e. g. the destroying of phone booths.

Where do you find a phone booth nowadays?

The days when they existed are still quite present in my mind.

Edited by Xray

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But one could argue that cleaning crews constantly picking up after the citizens are like indulging parents picking up after their spoiled children. That way, the children don't learn responsibility, instead they learn that they don't have to bother because it s someone else's job.

I thought you'd appreciate that I blamed the puke on a tourist. You can't teach tourists responsibility, they won't be in town long enough for it to sink in. Besides, how do you clean up puke without proper gear? On one of my trips I remember seeing American teenagers late at night, howling drunk, trying to do fancy skateboard moves all around (and on) historic buildings in Munich. The Germans just glared at them in disgust. The Brits are loud drunks too. But Germans? Never seen it. Once I got on an early morning train, like 7 AM, and a guy nearby, obviously a native, pulled out his breakfast: a huge (like 24 oz) can of Beck's beer. I didn't hear a peep out of him the whole trip, and no, he wasn't passed out.

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But one could argue that cleaning crews constantly picking up after the citizens are like indulging parents picking up after their spoiled children. That way, the children don't learn responsibility, instead they learn that they don't have to bother because it s someone else's job.

I thought you'd appreciate that I blamed the puke on a tourist. You can't teach tourists responsibility, they won't be in town long enough for it to sink in. Besides, how do you clean up puke without proper gear? On one of my trips I remember seeing American teenagers late at night, howling drunk, trying to do fancy skateboard moves all around (and on) historic buildings in Munich. The Germans just glared at them in disgust. The Brits are loud drunks too. But Germans? Never seen it. Once I got on an early morning train, like 7 AM, and a guy nearby, obviously a native, pulled out his breakfast: a huge (like 24 oz) can of Beck's beer. I didn't hear a peep out of him the whole trip, and no, he wasn't passed out.

In vino veritas, aber ins Beir ist etwas auch.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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You can't teach tourists responsibility, they won't be in town long enough for it to sink in. Besides, how do you clean up puke without proper gear? On one of my trips I remember seeing American teenagers late at night, howling drunk, trying to do fancy skateboard moves all around (and on) historic buildings in Munich. The Germans just glared at them in disgust. The Brits are loud drunks too. But Germans? Never seen it. Once I got on an early morning train, like 7 AM, and a guy nearby, obviously a native, pulled out his breakfast: a huge (like 24 oz) can of Beck's beer. I didn't hear a peep out of him the whole trip, and no, he wasn't passed out.

I think people tend to lose their civilized behavior more easily when on holiday. For many Germans, the Spanish island Mallorca is where they whoop it out, bingeing on sangría which they drink out of buckets(!): http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://img2.photographersdirect.com/img/19309/wm/pd1294048.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.photographersdirect.com/buyers/stockphoto.asp%3Fimageid%3D1294048&usg=__ZZAW_DgdXVSaGWnBwCCPeLM_Cb4=&h=375&w=500&sz=69&hl=de&start=122&zoom=1&tbnid=egwwNClPWK062M:&tbnh=137&tbnw=183&ei=efwdTvzRMYPxsgat-8myDQ&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dsangria%2Bin%2Bbuckets%2Bgermans%2Bin%2Bmallorca%26um%3D1%26hl%3Dde%26client%3Dfirefox-a%26sa%3DN%26rls%3Dorg.mozilla:de:official%26biw%3D1280%26bih%3D885%26tbm%3Disch&um=1&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx=190&vpy=284&dur=364&hovh=137&hovw=183&tx=156&ty=117&page=5&ndsp=30&ved=1t:429,r:0,s:122

In vino veritas, aber ins Beir ist etwas auch.

I assume you mean: "Im Bier ist auch etwas [Wahrheit]" ('There's also some truth in beer'). There sure is. The effect that the copious amounts guzzled at the Oktoberfest have on the consumer amply illustrates that. ;)

A few generations ago, pub brawls ('Wirtshaussschlägereien') were still quite common in Bavarian villages.

Edited by Xray

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Wow - topless Germans!

Now to be fair...and gender neutral...

where are the other pictures?

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I skImmed this thread, so idk if it's already been addressed.

The first step in critically examining a phenomenon is to ask if the phenomenon exists.

Does it exist? Do you have statistical evidence of if?

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I skImmed this thread, so idk if it's already been addressed.

The first step in critically examining a phenomenon is to ask if the phenomenon exists.

Does it exist? Do you have statistical evidence of if?

I admit, I'm skeptical as well of the idea that today's world is 'nastier' than the past.

Today's world has less slavery, gladitorial games and wars-over-insults-to-royalty-and-gods than the past did.

Perhaps some people think that the world is nastier because its becoming a LOT easier to see the kind of petty, backstabby, gossippy, social-politicky nastiness that far too many people participate in (go on to the vast majority of social networking sites for evidence). But that doesn't mean people are nastier; it just means people's nastiness is easier to record and preserve in digital format.

To borrow a quote from Marilyn Manson, "society hasn't become more violent, its simply become more televised. Does anyone think that the Civil War was the least bit civil?" In that spirit, I'd like to say society hasn't become nastier, social interactions have simply become easier to observe due to digital technologies. Does anyone think that bullying, backstabbing, gossipping and social politicking were invented by the Facebook Generation?

Many people are indeed nasty. But are people in aggregate more nasty? I don't think so.

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I want to add two more things to that:

The things we do have stats for are violent crimes, and they're generally down. If you can define a thing thats quantifiable that we could examine, then we could examine it. But as it stands atm, we can't prove it. That's not to say we can disprove it either.

But define it so we can examine it.

Second, I'm 31, there's no time in my adult life where I haven't heard ppl say thongs are getting nastier or the like.

But keys also look at history. Ask anyone who lived in NYC in the 1970s and 1980s if they think NYC is nicer or nastier today than then.

Keep things in perspective.

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Second, I'm 31, there's no time in my adult life where I haven't heard ppl say thongs are getting nastier or the like.

People have been saying that for the past 5000 years. Have you noticed that the Golden Age is always in our past?

Ba'al Chatzaf

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