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2 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

If we had a government which mostly  operated to keep domestic order,  guard our shores and did little else,  we would all be better off economically  but we might not be so advanced technologically.   If we have a less  intrusive government we would all be better off on the average economically,   but we would be somewhere in the 1970s or 1960s  technologically.   We are not all that advanced  from that time technologically (about 40  years)  but  our society is the worse because of government intervention in the nooks and crannies of our lives. 

I completely agree about being better off economically and that our society is the worse off because of the government intervention.  But I totally disagree that we would not be so advanced technologically.  The government is terribly wasteful and myopic and inefficient in its processes and that certainly includes doing research and advancing technology. 

You are just looking at things that have been invented by government contractors or employees on this or that government project.  But you don't imagine in your mind that if government were smaller, people were much freer and had much more of their money that the 'magic' of the excitement and ingenuity and profit motive wouldn't be a far more powerful engine - not just for commerce - but for advancing technology as well.  A technology breakthrough is worth big money, this would mean that industry (without all the government soaking up money) would pay inventors and researchers far more, and would target advances in their particular area.  And this would be going on in every conceivable area at the same time, and the stupid or failed approaches would quietly disappear and the successes would be the ones where new technologies paid off and spread to all the consumers who wanted it.  Look at cell phones, smart phones, apps... etc.

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That's what it says at the top of the page.  Your point?  It's not like this thread has devolved into a medley of cat videos.  Yet.  

It is intriguing.  I've been fairly obsessed for about a year with thinking about details.  I find microbiology fascinating. I wouldn't be wise, however, to talk about details.  The schemers are

They see suave, debonair Frisco giving a philosophically deep money speech, or John Galt taking over a radio presentation and addressing the audience in the manner of a professor. If they don't see th

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2 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

He really said for a Clinton NOT to take money from political insiders.

He really did said for Hillary to not take money from big donors, and he is telling her that it isn't helping anyway. 

He is coming from the meme that the big donors will own the candidates that they fund.  But, at least for the Clintons, that is the wrong meme. 

A leash has two ends.  Look at this from the Clinton's viewpoint.  They have spent their adult lifetimes looking for donors to milk.  It isn't about them 'being owned' - it is about them 'making a sale.'  For them the politics is just the larger marketplace they work in.  The money coming their way, and sticking to their pockets is the purpose.  Do you have a Lincoln bedroom - rent it out.  Are you the Secretary of State - Make sales to foreign interests.

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15 minutes ago, SteveWolfer said:

I completely agree about being better off economically and that our society is the worse off because of the government intervention.  But I totally disagree that we would not be so advanced technologically.  The government is terribly wasteful and myopic and inefficient in its processes and that certainly includes doing research and advancing technology. 

You are just looking at things that have been invented by government contractors or employees on this or that government project.  But you don't imagine in your mind that if government were smaller, people were much freer and had much more of their money that the 'magic' of the excitement and ingenuity and profit motive wouldn't be a far more powerful engine - not just for commerce - but for advancing technology as well.  A technology breakthrough is worth big money, this would mean that industry (without all the government soaking up money) would pay inventors and researchers far more, and would target advances in their particular area.  And this would be going on in every conceivable area at the same time, and the stupid or failed approaches would quietly disappear and the successes would be the ones where new technologies paid off and spread to all the consumers who wanted it.  Look at cell phones, smart phones, apps... etc.

I am looking at things that  private firms under standard accounting rules would not be likely to undertake.  It all comes down to who has the money and how much.  Ordinary business firms  cannot arbitrarily tax their customers nor can they acquire property (in particular real-estate)  by means of force.  Governments can and do.  Governments have the legal power to tax and the legal power to seize land (eminent domain).   Also government have acquired the power to regulate practices based nominally on public health and safety.  In short government can do what individual firms and consortia cannot do.  This is bad news and good news.  The bad news is all the inefficiency,  waste and corruption that accompanies regulation.  The good news ( and not much of that, alas) is the interstate highway system and the GPS system.  Neither of these would likely be produced by privately owned firms.  

 

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2 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

A dorky communist protester said he was exercising his right to free speech, and this dude bellowed in his face, "In a communist country, there is no free speech, you fucking moron. Hey! Go to China. Hey! Go to China and talk about Tiananmen Square and see where it gets you. Dead! The Chinese government will kill you and oppress you, you fucking retard!"

That was my favorite part.  By then he was really worked up.  And you could see that the dorky guy he was yelling at believed he was advocating for a better system. 

The Asian guy that was yelling at the black guy earlier was different - you could see that in some way the Asia was motivated by conflict.  And he was fairly practiced.  (What was with that strange metal throat guard or scarf?)

How do people grow up like the dorky guy, such that it is easy for them divorce their minds from reality when grasping hold of a theory.  They make their minds into machines that work with floating abstractions - walling them off from contradictions, creating blank-out triggers in certain areas.  Then the work their mind does is about attaching passion to bad rhetoric, manipulating symbols, and getting some kind of gratification or emotional reward while ignoring any signals that are trying to tell them they are on the wrong track.

If we could find the kids that are just starting down that psycho-epistemological path - find them early on - schools might be able to get them back on  path for critical thinking, for openness to errors and fallacies.

I like what the black dude was asking, "What state are you from?  Who paid for you to come here?"  He was trying to do what our news media should be doing at every single demonstration - find out which are paid demonstrators, find out who is supporting them, find out how they organize and communicate.  Incompetent journalists.

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18 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

I am looking at things that  private firms under standard accounting rules would not be likely to undertake.

That is because private firms seek to make customers happy and to serve their needs and desires.  That is why a capitalist system will always provide more of what most people want.

20 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Ordinary business firms  cannot arbitrarily tax their customers nor can they acquire property (in particular real-estate)  by means of force.

Yes.  And I think that is a very good thing.  I don't want other people to take my stuff.  And I know that a society where people can take other peoples stuff is not a good place to live.

22 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Governments have the legal power to tax....

Yes.  And if they do not raise enough revenue (from taxes or other means) they won't be able to carry out their primary function which is to protect us from military forces from outside the nation or thugs inside of the nation, or provide a good civil court system so we can interact and be able to resolve differences without the use of force.

24 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Also government have acquired the power to regulate practices based nominally on public health and safety.  In short government can do what individual firms and consortia cannot do.

Government cannot do anything that isn't based upon prohibition, confiscation and/or directing of force.  And even these things are being done by humans.  Government is an organization of humans, operating according to laws made by humans, enforcing laws with humans.  Government power has to be limited unless you advocate for outright totalitarianism. 

So, what is the principle by which you decide what things should be legally permitted for government to confiscate, prohibit, or direct force.  If it isn't individual rights, then government isn't a force designed for the purpose of protecting liberty. 

If you can't name and describe your principle by which you decide "yes" or "no" on what powers are proper to government, then you are like someone trying to tell a scientist what is going on in reality but without understanding any scientific principles.

We know that fire can be a good thing or a bad thing.  A fire can warm your house or burn it down.  It can cook your food or set the kitchen on fire.  It can power internal combustion engines to transport us and goods or be used as a terrorist bomb.  A person who runs around advocating for this or that kind of government, or saying that government should do this, or not do that, but does not have an explicit principle that drives those declarations is like a person who runs around setting things on fire and says it is good but can't give a rational explanation why those things and not other things.

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24 minutes ago, SteveWolfer said:

That is because private firms seek to make customers happy and to serve their needs and desires.  That is why a capitalist system will always provide more of what most people want.

Yes.  And I think that is a very good thing.  I don't want other people to take my stuff.  And I know that a society where people can take other peoples stuff is not a good place to live.

Yes.  And if they do not raise enough revenue (from taxes or other means) they won't be able to carry out their primary function which is to protect us from military forces from outside the nation or thugs inside of the nation, or provide a good civil court system so we can interact and be able to resolve differences without the use of force.

Government cannot do anything that isn't based upon prohibition, confiscation and/or directing of force.  And even these things are being done by humans.  Government is an organization of humans, operating according to laws made by humans, enforcing laws with humans.  Government power has to be limited unless you advocate for outright totalitarianism. 

So, what is the principle by which you decide what things should be legally permitted for government to confiscate, prohibit, or direct force.  If it isn't individual rights, then government isn't a force designed for the purpose of protecting liberty. 

If you can't name and describe your principle by which you decide "yes" or "no" on what powers are proper to government, then you are like someone trying to tell a scientist what is going on in reality but without understanding any scientific principles.

We know that fire can be a good thing or a bad thing.  A fire can warm your house or burn it down.  It can cook your food or set the kitchen on fire.  It can power internal combustion engines to transport us and goods or be used as a terrorist bomb.  A person who runs around advocating for this or that kind of government, or saying that government should do this, or not do that, but does not have an explicit principle that drives those declarations is like a person who runs around setting things on fire and says it is good but can't give a rational explanation why those things and not other things.

I agree substantially with what you write.  HOWEVER,  in spite of the actual and potential evils flowing from government management of the economy a few good things have emerged from government involvement.  Among them.  The GPS system, even though the world could have managed with dead reckoning, stellar observation and radio beacons.   The interstate highway system.   The rapid development of computers.  I have no doubt computers would have emerged even in a purely private economy  but government military operations and requirements greatly sped of the process.  It took a lot of government allocation to speed up the development from discrete transistors  to microscopic semiconductors electronically etched of silicone sheets.  Under purely private conditions this might have taken fifty years ( I am being optimistic).  Under government funded hothouse conditions it took under 20 years.  There was collateral damage politically and economically no doubt, but the overall benefits are clear.  

Just as a matter of historical observation  the greatest advances in science have taken place under government/church auspices.  Copernicus was sent to school by his uncle, a minor noble who collected rents on land granted to him by the rulers.   Kepler derived his numbers from Tycho Brahe who was royally funded in his astronomical  studies.  Newton had his Principia published  and his work was funded in part by Cambridge University a church school and by the Astronomer General at Greenwich Observatory, royally funded.  The Royal Society of which Newton eventually took leadership was royally funded.  In short our greatest advances in physics was bought at taxpayer expense.  And so on.  Even Einstein worked for the Patent Department in Switzerland and collected a taxpayer funded  salary.  Like it or not government in one way or another has had a great effect on the development of science and technology.  

The only place where purely capitalist enterprises got us to the Moon is in Robert Heinlein science fiction stories. 

 

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Colbert pushed it about as hard as you can push it on this one.

It's ugly.

Since part of the line is bleeped out, here is the text. A college student asked him what he would ask Trump if he were interviewing him right then.

Colbert: Well, we're not broadcasting right now so I would say, "What does Vladimir Putin's dick taste like?"

It looks like Colbert understood the implications right after he said it. Just look at how he reacted to his own self, his embarrassed laugh and mocking himself with old minstrel-show moves. (He needed big white gloves and blackface to make it work right, though.)

We shall see what we shall see, but I am pretty sure Colbert just guaranteed he will never interview Donald Trump once Trump wins. Right now it's all fun and games, but I wonder what his CBS bosses are going to feel about this over time, given Colbert's ratings problem...

In fact, this video is going viral. I wonder what CBS feels about that as it is.

Michael

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4 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Just as a matter of historical observation  the greatest advances in science have taken place under government/church auspices.

There are two elements to consider from this perspective.  What the advance is and how it is funded. 

What is the mechanism that chooses what to advance:  When government chooses what area or item to advance, it will, over the long-term, fail to make as many people as happy or as well off as a capitalist system.  The very nature of government interventions is elites choosing.  Under capitalism the invisible hand summarizes, maximizes, and carefully tracks the desires of the most people as they seek to flourish, do well, and have good lives.

When you put aside the issue of choice as to what to advance, what is left is how is the advance funded.  Historically we have church funding, and both in the past and the present we have government funding.  But remember that the government has no wealth of its own.  It has to take money from the private sector first (or borrow, which will just be future taxes, or inflate which is just a different kind of taking).  If all of that government confiscated funding were still in the private sector is could be allocated in many, many ways.  Our financial markets have acquired extraordinary flexibility and facility.  Think about the fact that (ignoring the government mucking about) it is mostly private money that funds buildings - all buildings - every house that was purchased on a mortgage, every shopping center funded with a floated limited partnership sale, etc.  This is an amount that dwarfs all of the government spending on advances for the entire century.  And, it is driven by the individual desires - all unique.  Government projects are one size is forced on everyone.  Here is your advance.  I, government took your money.  I decided what to spend it on.  I decided how to spend it.  So, like it or not here you go.  That's very different.  In terms of single item advances, it is easy for today's capital markets to fund them regardless of size.  But there is a limitation.  It has to be able to show a profit (which means people want it) - I like that limitation.

18 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

 I have no doubt computers would have emerged even in a purely private economy  but government military operations and requirements greatly sped of the process.  It took a lot of government allocation to speed up the development from discrete transistors  to microscopic semiconductors electronically etched of silicone sheets.  Under purely private conditions this might have taken fifty years ( I am being optimistic).  Under government funded hothouse conditions it took under 20 years.

This is at least partly a kind of intellectual optical illusion.  You see government taking money, picking projects, hiring people, and putting out a product.  What you don't see is what that money would have done had it been left for the free market which ceaselessly produces those things that people think give them the best life.  You are comparing what is a known product of a known inefficient system directed by elites, with what doesn't exist because of their interventions.  Here is the stuff you should make a formula of: A = the money taken out of the system.  B = a factor of efficiency that is high for private market satisfaction of wants, and low for government work.  I maintain that only the elites are actually benefited by the government route.  Everyone else would be better off to stay with the Capitalist system.

24 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

The only place where purely capitalist enterprises got us to the Moon is in Robert Heinlein science fiction stories. 

Government only got a few former military pilots turned astronauts to the moon.  Not "us" - for "us" to be able to go to the moon will require private enterprise to find ways to develop whatever technology would be needed and the mustering and organizing of resources that would provide a profitable way to get "us" to the moon.  The government is unlikely to ever get "us" to the moon.  Private enterprise probably will, and it will happen faster if government doesn't take our money and burden us with restrictions.  Which is faster?  Which is "accelerated"? Never (as with government), or as soon as people want it enough for themselves to pay for it (as with liberty)?

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24 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Colbert pushed it about as hard as you can push it on this one.

It's ugly.

Since part of the line is bleeped out, here is the text. A college student asked him what he would ask Trump if he were interviewing him right then.

Colbert: Well, we're not broadcasting right now so I would say, "What does Vladimir Putin's dick taste like?"

It looks like Colbert understood the implications right after he said it. Just look at how he reacted to his own self, his embarrassed laugh and mocking himself with old minstrel-show moves. (He needed big white gloves and blackface to make it work right, though.)

We shall see what we shall see, but I am pretty sure Colbert just guaranteed he will never interview Donald Trump once Trump wins. Right now it's all fun and games, but I wonder what his CBS bosses are going to feel about this over time, given Colbert's ratings problem...

In fact, this video is going viral. I wonder what CBS feels about that as it is.

Michael

Would that be how Les Moonves feels about it? He runs CBS.

--Brant

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It's too complicated to try to embed this video, so here is the RCP Video link:

Scarborough: Obama Sounded Like Ronald Reagan At DNC, "Spoke For My View Of America"

They blasted Trump for not being Reagan, too. Joe himself was lamenting that the party he grew up with and loved was not the party that presented the values he grew up with and loved, but instead, Obama did... yada yada yada...

I watched this video and the one thing I did not hear discussed by any of the guests is individual achievement. These dudes wanted poetry and a good story. Some high-sounding words where they could turn off their eyes and only look to the vision inside their skulls.

A huge part of the Trump revolution is that people want impediments like big government, terrorism, etc. out of their way so they can achieve things on their own--their own individual values. Not the values of others. Their values--the ones they choose. And the way the system is rigged right now, they can't achieve them anymore. 

When they hear people talk about principles, but seem fine with a system where they get screwed, they simply tune out. It's really that simple.

President Obama, feeling this lacuna, picked up the Reagan vision mantle and told a Reagan story. Oddly enough, even the Democrats ate it up. And now everybody thinks this is a Trump defect.

The Morning Joe people look like they just found the Missing Link. But all they found were more words. 

The achievers want to achieve. Trump supporters are achievers. And they are not taking a fairy tale as a substitute this time around, even if it sounds like Reagan.

But the old more establishment Republicans? Hell. They want the fairy tale so they can (1) fool the people, (2) pretend to themselves they are not corrupt, but instead get choked up over how good they are, and (3) get back to living off the largesse of crony capitalism...

Michael

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5 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

No. I am talking about the -effects-  government operation has on the society and particular the operation of the economy.   That is only one government and there are many effects.  Some beneficial,  most not beneficial.   If we had a government which mostly  operated to keep domestic order,  guard our shores and did little else,  we would all be better off economically  but we might not be so advanced technologically.   If we have a less  intrusive government we would all be better off on the average economically,   but we would be somewhere in the 1970s or 1960s  technologically.   We are not all that advanced  from that time technologically (about 40  years)  but  our society is the worse because of government intervention in the nooks and crannies of our lives. 

Now you claim too much for you have no data about how advanced technologically we could have been if this or if that. We have had to spend buku bucks to fight our wars if not protect our shores, needed or unneeded (a separate question).

--Brant

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11 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

Would that be how Les Moonves feels about it? He runs CBS.

Brant,

You just made my point. Moonves said earlier that Trump was bad for the country, but great for CBS.

How do you think he is going to feel after the reality sinks in that Trump will not go on Colbert's show under any circumstance, but he will go on the night-time shows of Colbert's competitors and have a grand old time as everyone watches the ratings of said competitors go through the roof?

Michael

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4 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

When they hear people talk about principles, but seem fine with a system where they get screwed, they simply tune out. It's really that simple.

That's true. 

But there are the people who respond emotionally to those who say, "You're getting screwed, and I'll fix that" even though no principles are offered.  We see both these at play in politics, both are emotional, both are intellectually dead.

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5 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

Now you claim too much for you have no data about how advanced technologically we could have been if this or if that.

Yes, exactly.  In the absence of any data, that government advances are faster.  And, I put forth a principle that we, and Baal, understand and agree on... government and free enterprise are different in terms of efficiency and in terms of being motivated to satisfy the most desires of the most people.

7 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

We have had to spend buku bucks to fight our wars if not protect our shores

I agree.  And I've agreed that the research and development that directly effects our ability to protect ourselves is what government ought to do. 

To me, that line we draw is between choice and force - as opposites in the realm of human nature - and that is how we derive individual rights and from there, we derive the proper purpose of government, and from there we derive what government should do and should not do.  Baal likes to make an exception for things he considers cool or important or that he likes - certain scientific/technological government projects.  I think you need to have a principle that you stick too, particularly with something as dangerous as government can potentially be.

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Colbert is close.

Once the 30,000 emails are available, we'll all be asking Hillary what Wall Street dick tastes like, what dictator dick and Islamist dick taste like.

Unless, of course, all the emails are about yoga schedules, as she assured us. Her campaign guy who said yesterday that this is a national security issue doesn't seem very assured at all.

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1 hour ago, SteveWolfer said:

There are two elements to consider from this perspective.  What the advance is and how it is funded. 

What is the mechanism that chooses what to advance:  When government chooses what area or item to advance, it will, over the long-term, fail to make as many people as happy or as well off as a capitalist system.  The very nature of government interventions is elites choosing.  Under capitalism the invisible hand summarizes, maximizes, and carefully tracks the desires of the most people as they seek to flourish, do well, and have good lives.

When you put aside the issue of choice as to what to advance, what is left is how is the advance funded.  Historically we have church funding, and both in the past and the present we have government funding.  But remember that the government has no wealth of its own.  It has to take money from the private sector first (or borrow, which will just be future taxes, or inflate which is just a different kind of taking).  If all of that government confiscated funding were still in the private sector is could be allocated in many, many ways.  Our financial markets have acquired extraordinary flexibility and facility.  Think about the fact that (ignoring the government mucking about) it is mostly private money that funds buildings - all buildings - every house that was purchased on a mortgage, every shopping center funded with a floated limited partnership sale, etc.  This is an amount that dwarfs all of the government spending on advances for the entire century.  And, it is driven by the individual desires - all unique.  Government projects are one size is forced on everyone.  Here is your advance.  I, government took your money.  I decided what to spend it on.  I decided how to spend it.  So, like it or not here you go.  That's very different.  In terms of single item advances, it is easy for today's capital markets to fund them regardless of size.  But there is a limitation.  It has to be able to show a profit (which means people want it) - I like that limitation.

This is at least partly a kind of intellectual optical illusion.  You see government taking money, picking projects, hiring people, and putting out a product.  What you don't see is what that money would have done had it been left for the free market which ceaselessly produces those things that people think give them the best life.  You are comparing what is a known product of a known inefficient system directed by elites, with what doesn't exist because of their interventions.  Here is the stuff you should make a formula of: A = the money taken out of the system.  B = a factor of efficiency that is high for private market satisfaction of wants, and low for government work.  I maintain that only the elites are actually benefited by the government route.  Everyone else would be better off to stay with the Capitalist system.

Government only got a few former military pilots turned astronauts to the moon.  Not "us" - for "us" to be able to go to the moon will require private enterprise to find ways to develop whatever technology would be needed and the mustering and organizing of resources that would provide a profitable way to get "us" to the moon.  The government is unlikely to ever get "us" to the moon.  Private enterprise probably will, and it will happen faster if government doesn't take our money and burden us with restrictions.  Which is faster?  Which is "accelerated"? Never (as with government), or as soon as people want it enough for themselves to pay for it (as with liberty)?

It is "us"  or at least me.  I was forced to pay for the damned thing. 

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11 minutes ago, Jon Letendre said:

Her campaign guy who said yesterday that this is a national security issue...

We have reached the bald-faced lie stage of political competition.  Everyone who heard Trump speak knew that the 30,000 emails he was talking about were already deleted, gone, non-recoverable, and the remains of the hard-drive and such can't be further explored even by the FBIs best forensic people, which is where they are.  So, how in the Hell would anyone hack those without a time machine?

And if those emails, deleted by a team of her lawyers (she hires lawyers as data clerks, not because law school teach data skills, which they don't, but because they can't talk due to client-attorney privilege)... if those emails were all about yoga poses and wedding plans, then where is the national security issue.  Top secret yoga position?

There was only one person inviting foreign powers to hack into actual national security secrets: the person who chose to use a server in her basement that was less secure than a GMail account, to use multiple devices in countries where she was told they would be vulnerable.  This was all verified by the head of the FBI, not one of her campaign guys.

Since it's impossible in the present or future to hack what no longer exists, how could that be an invitation.  And here is the thing: all of the top campaign operatives knew this, just like the top people knew it wasn't a video in Benghazi, just like Hillary knew she wasn't under gun fire when she landed in Kosovo.  Lies.  All Lies.

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2 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

It is "us"  or at least me.  I was forced to pay for the damned thing. 

Paying for stuff you don't want is the norm with government spending, except when it does the minimum needed to maintain an environment where individual rights prevail - that is something everyone uses, wanted or not.  Try to protest against freedom of speech without being free to speak, etc.  Akin, in spirit, to axioms, capitalism's political freedom is necessary to organize against capitalism - making intellectual asses out of socialists, communists, Nazis, and the social warriors of progressivism who agitate against microaggressions and for safe spaces and shout down diversity of ideas.

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Just now, SteveWolfer said:

Paying for stuff you don't want is the norm with government spending, except when it does the minimum needed to maintain an environment where individual rights prevail - that is something everyone uses, wanted or not.  Try to protest against freedom of speech without being free to speak, etc.  Akin, in spirit, to axioms, capitalism's political freedom is necessary to organize against capitalism - making intellectual asses out of socialists, communists, Nazis, and the social warriors of progressivism who agitate against microaggressions and for safe spaces and shout down diversity of ideas.

Capitalism is Wonderful.  Too bad we don't have it.....

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1 hour ago, SteveWolfer said:

But there are the people who respond emotionally to those who say, "You're getting screwed, and I'll fix that" even though no principles are offered.

Steve,

When most people have water spewing out of pipes in their homes, they call a plumber who looks like he knows what the hell he is doing with a wrench. They don't look for diplomas.

That's what's happening.

No amount of doubts about diplomas (or ideology) is going to take away Trump's ability with a wrench, so to speak. Nor is any diploma going to change the minds of those who are looking for a man good with a wrench.

The truth is, those who talk about principles, they have talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked and talked... And the problems have kept getting worse.

So if it is lamentable that people are choosing a person who doesn't use principles-speak in the correct jargon, I see it as the fault of those who talk principles. All they've done is talk so far as they've allowed those totally without principles to run the show. Many (like the poets at the National Review) even get big fat sinecures for talking high principle about those (like the Bushes) without principles except to make war for profit.

btw - I disagree with you that Trump doesn't offer principles. He doesn't offer jargon. But I hear him offer principles all the time--principles he lives by. He talks about about being smart, being fair, being competent, being strong and tough, working hard, striving for excellence in everything, winning, trying to find out what is going on in a dangerous situation before making commitments, and so on. He offers these principles every time he speaks.

Michael

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This is actually a decent discussion between Alex Jones and Tucker Carlson:

But right in the middle of the discussion, the following image took over the screen for a brief time, with the discussion continuing in voice over:

07.28.2016-17.29.png

Dayaamm!

I almost spit out my coffee onto the computer screen and still can't stop laughing...

:) 

Michael

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22 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

This is actually a decent discussion between Alex Jones and Tucker Carlson:

But right in the middle of the discussion, the following image took over the screen for a brief time, with the discussion continuing in voice over:

07.28.2016-17.29.png

Dayaamm!

I almost spit out my coffee onto the computer screen and still can't stop laughing...

:) 

Michael

queue up the Jaws theme...

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51 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

I disagree with you that Trump doesn't offer principles. He doesn't offer jargon. But I hear him offer principles all the time--principles he lives by. He talks about about being smart, being fair, being competent, being strong and tough, working hard, striving for excellence in everything, winning, trying to find out what is going on in a dangerous situation before making commitments, and so on. He offers these principles every time he speaks.

Libertarian/Objectivist/Constitutionalist principles are the ones that apply when the job is political.  And when he talks about being smart, fair, competent, etc. we still are going to have to wait and see it these were jargon or the real deal.

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26 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

discussion between Alex Jones and Tucker Carlson

Tucker Carlson makes an excellent point when he says that the left, in making Trump appear to be not just wrong, but evil, create a mindset where anything is justified in their fight against him.  Tucker says, "If Hitler were running for president, wouldn't you do ANYTHING to stop him?"  Progressives do this all the time with Identity Politics and wedge issues, with Saul Alinsky tactics of demonizing your candidate, and again.... like I've said before, they start with "The end justifies the means" - when you add these up, you end up with a political faction that is more likely to sanction violence, abandon facts and truth, and separate from reason.

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30 minutes ago, SteveWolfer said:

Libertarian/Objectivist/Constitutionalist principles are the ones that apply when the job is political.

Steve,

Apply to whom and by whom?

The people who lost their livelihoods because international trade deals sucked manufacturing plants out of their cities? You mean they are fine when a candidate talks principles in the correct language but they stay broke? 

Good luck with that one. 

:)

I can do a litany of grievances--legitimate grievances--through that lens (immigration, war, healthcare and so on).

When you get to know a lot of these people (Trump supporters), you will see that they hold many of the political principles that Libertarians/Objectivists/Constitutionalists hold. Many of these people (most) don't use the jargon, though. They've been too busy building their lives and families to study this stuff. So sometimes they make mistakes. And that's where people like you become very valuable.

Instead of pretending their choice of candidate is unprincipled (when he is clearly principled), or dismissing their principles as unimportant or irrelevant when they are offered, I suggest you do like you are doing with your books. Give them the jargon. Help them refine the concepts.

Build on what they are instead of distrusting them to their face. These are predominantly good people with excellent character. Hell Trump himself is good people. He does great work. And he doesn't make war profits.

Save your powder for the enemy, not for the ones you want to persuade...

In other words, my unsolicited advice is to persuade Trump and Trumpers to add better to their already good, rather than treat them as bad. For example, explain why eminent domain is not a good idea in language they can understand, then teach them the jargon for it. Then explain again, and again, and again, until they get it. Things like that. These are good people and they tend to be rational. They are reachable. But this requires you also listen to what they say with the Principle of Charity.

So long as you adopt an insider--almost intellectually elite--posture, you will not reach them. The dialogue will simply not start if they detect that attitude.

But it's your choice in the end...

Michael

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