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BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'

Bobert 04 Oct 12 - 08:07 PM
GUEST,Lighter 04 Oct 12 - 07:59 PM
GUEST,999 04 Oct 12 - 06:05 PM
GUEST,Lighter 03 Oct 12 - 08:13 PM
kendall 03 Oct 12 - 07:26 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Oct 12 - 05:40 PM
GUEST,Lighter 03 Oct 12 - 04:44 PM
kendall 03 Oct 12 - 03:55 PM
saulgoldie 03 Oct 12 - 12:47 PM
GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser) 03 Oct 12 - 03:57 AM
dick greenhaus 02 Oct 12 - 02:07 PM
GUEST 01 Oct 12 - 03:36 PM
musicmick 01 Oct 12 - 08:51 AM
John P 30 Sep 12 - 11:58 AM
GUEST,999 29 Sep 12 - 08:22 AM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 28 Sep 12 - 07:55 PM
GUEST,CS 28 Sep 12 - 12:25 PM
GUEST,Lighter 28 Sep 12 - 12:19 PM
GUEST,Lighter 28 Sep 12 - 10:18 AM
John P 28 Sep 12 - 09:28 AM
John P 28 Sep 12 - 12:59 AM
GUEST,Lighter 27 Sep 12 - 09:54 PM
John P 27 Sep 12 - 09:10 PM
Bill D 27 Sep 12 - 08:01 PM
GUEST,Lighter 27 Sep 12 - 06:00 PM
GUEST,Lighter 27 Sep 12 - 01:47 PM
Stringsinger 27 Sep 12 - 01:44 PM
GUEST 27 Sep 12 - 12:21 PM
Bill D 27 Sep 12 - 09:45 AM
GUEST,999 26 Sep 12 - 09:30 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 26 Sep 12 - 01:05 AM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 25 Sep 12 - 06:17 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 24 Sep 12 - 11:37 PM
michaelr 24 Sep 12 - 08:10 PM
Little Hawk 24 Sep 12 - 07:49 PM
GUEST,Lighter 24 Sep 12 - 06:46 PM
catspaw49 24 Sep 12 - 06:24 PM
GUEST, Lighter 24 Sep 12 - 06:09 PM
Little Hawk 24 Sep 12 - 05:40 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Sep 12 - 05:20 PM
GUEST,Lighter 24 Sep 12 - 05:01 PM
Raedwulf 24 Sep 12 - 04:52 PM
GUEST 24 Sep 12 - 04:43 PM
Jack the Sailor 24 Sep 12 - 04:39 PM
Bill D 24 Sep 12 - 04:29 PM
Stringsinger 24 Sep 12 - 03:38 PM
GUEST,Lighter 24 Sep 12 - 03:00 PM
Little Hawk 24 Sep 12 - 02:38 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Sep 12 - 02:32 PM
Little Hawk 24 Sep 12 - 02:31 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Bobert
Date: 04 Oct 12 - 08:07 PM

Brucie is 100% correct...

So-called conservatives ain't at all conservative unless you think that wanting to turn the clock back over 100 years means conservative...

No, these people are government haters... Let's just call it like it is...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 04 Oct 12 - 07:59 PM

Long, long ago there were truly conservative (and reactionary) Democrats just as there were liberal Republicans, with lots of moderates in both parties.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,999
Date: 04 Oct 12 - 06:05 PM

One thing I will posit: Republicans are not Conservatives and Democrats are not Liberals. Talking about R/Cs or D/Ls as though they are interchangeable terms is a mistake that leads to more than enough arguments which will never be resolved because people choose not to select their terms wisely and aptly. IMO.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 08:13 PM

By "news" I mean, of course, factual reports, such as "So-and-so did or said such-and-such."

Hannity and O'Reilly don't come on till the evening. They're opinion shows and are presented a such.

In my experience, Fox's *reporters* report objective facts no less accurately than other news organizations. The actual *news* on Fox is true(except very rarely and inadvertently, and if they make a mistake they apologize on the air as professional journalists are ethically required to do. Fox News does not invent "facts" or knowingly lie about what exactly happened.

What I'm talking about is much more subtle. Part of it comes from their choices about what's "newsworthy," and part comes from the frequently biased attitude of the anchors. Fox anchors often react to the factual news with winks and nods and prejudicial digs, always aimed at liberals, and especially at the Obama administration.

They also like to ask guests leading questions based on the assumption that liberals are dangerous, semi-criminal, America-hating idiots while "conservatives" (often meaning reactionary populists) are benevolent, patriotic, no-nonsense problem-solvers. If a story makes a liberal look bad, they will often run it into the ground. If it makes a "conservative" look bad, they may not mention it at all. They also seem to cover partisan attacks on the administration rather frequently, but liberal attacks on "conservatives" notably less often - unless the attack can be made to look foolish or hypocritical.

As I say, I was amused by Fox News (just the news) for years. But by the fall of 2008 I couldn't stand any more. Now I can only watch a few minutes at a time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: kendall
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 07:26 PM

I've tried several time to watch Fox noise, but I just can't stand Bill and Sean. What they do is Opinion journalism, not news, and Bill admitted it.He also admitted that Fox leans to the right.

Several times they have broadcast jokes and lies as news. No thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 05:40 PM

"The actual news that Fox reports is as accurate as anybody's."

I'm not so sure about that, unless you can tell me how it is possible to accurately cover politics while slanting all the coverage to one side.


You also forgot the little text screens that scroll "headlines" that tend to reinforce GOP arguments while demeaning "liberal" ones. They were doing that throughout the W presidency. Jan 2001 - Jan 2009.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 04:44 PM

Saulgoldie, you have my sympathy.

I live in exactly the same world you describe.

Always have - at least since I moved to a Red State.

Thanks to the preferred usage on Fox News, all non-Fox News outlets (except the unabashedly "conservative" ones) are "the mainstream (liberal) media."

Fox, of course, with its own zillion-dollar budget, tens of millions of viewers, and outlets everywhere, is somehow not "mainstream." What's more it describes itself as "fair and balanced."

Actually, I used to watch it all the time - until 2008 when I couldn't stand the constant, gratuitous anti-liberal, anti-Obama slams.

The actual news that Fox reports is as accurate as anybody's. But with occasional exceptions, the editorial content, often in the subtle form of throwaway jokes, intonation, arched eyebrows, basic assumptions, etc., is overwhelmingly anti-liberal and very often pro-Tea Party. Regardless of the story's real significance, they also like to harp on items that could make liberals look bad. The whole ACORN business and "voter fraud" comes to mind. Hosts like O'Reilly and Hannity are only part of the issue. (At least the finally pulled the plug on Glen Beck, "America's History Teacher.")

And no, I can't give multiple examples off the top of my head, but watch Fox & Friends for a week or so, then switch to CNN, and I guar-on-tee you'll see what I mean. (And I see some, but comparatively little, "liberal bias" on the other networks.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: kendall
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 03:55 PM

McGrath, you should read up on The Mermansk Run. It was vital to Russia.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: saulgoldie
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 12:47 PM

Case in point:
Talking with a coworker. She says something about "media bias." I ask for an example. She says, in effect, "all of them." I ask for an example. She clarifies: ABC, NBC, CBS. (Curiously does not mention NPR, MSNBC, or Mother Jones.) I ask for an example of a biased story. She can't answer.

She starts asserting that "they" are giving out polling data that is false. Please cite an example, and how do you know? Well, they said on Fox. OK, then, do you consider Fox to be unbiased? Yes, they have Liberals on. Please cite an example. Duh...And so on. Oh, and finally, she saw my coffee mug that reads "Made in America" with a pic of youknowwho. And on the other side is a birth certificate. She starts in with "you know, many people don't think he was born in the US!" SheeIT! How can I talk to that? I mean, in a fact-based reality? Maybe in a MXYZPTLK world...

I also asserted that people and life itself is for the most part not black or white, but many (50? ;-) ) shades of gray. She sat looking puzzled as I suggested a few real life examples.

So here we have someone who "believes" what she thinks are "facts" and "believes" that all of our experience and decisions are black or white. How on earth do I discourse with her and work towards a higher understanding?

Saul


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 03 Oct 12 - 03:57 AM

'For the U.N. to work in a just and equitable manner, it must not be controlled by the world's major powers. It must be a genuine democracy of equal partners'.

Like the Commonwealth, you mean?


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 02 Oct 12 - 02:07 PM

"dupe" and "wimp" are terms which are not mutually exclusive. They may both be correct.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 03:36 PM

"The Right think I'm a dupe and the Left think I'm a wimp."

Ditto for this ol' boy, too, musicmick. They think that of me, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: musicmick
Date: 01 Oct 12 - 08:51 AM

The problem with posting this thread, in this venue,is that it gleans a zillion responses from folks who dislike Conservatives, and few, if any, from Conservatives, themselves. I consider myself a moderate Liberal and I know that I wouldn't want to be defined by people who hate me. (If you want to know how the other side defines "Liberals", I would refer you to Romney's "47%" speech.)
I have known too many caring and charitable Republicans to lump them into some comic book Evil cabal. That doesn't mean I am going to vote for Romney but it does mean that I can disagree with someone without dehumanizing him.
What a dilemma. The Right think I'm a dupe and the Left think I'm a wimp. I answer them in the words of Mehitabel, the cat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: John P
Date: 30 Sep 12 - 11:58 AM

Do any of you remember when Conservatives didn't seem to be mentally unbalanced? I do.

Like when Barry Goldwater got in a lot of trouble with next-generation "conservatives" for saying that being a conservative (as in getting government out of our private lives) means that you should support gay marriage? Goldwater was frighteningly far right, but at least he was internally consistent.

As soon as "social conservatives" became a vote-getting ploy by the Republican party, they lost the ability to present a coherent message. Contradictions abound. The scary part is that it doesn't seem to make any difference to any of them. All they had to do was make "critical thinking" one of the bad liberal ideas. As soon as you get rid of logic, everything fits just fine.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,999
Date: 29 Sep 12 - 08:22 AM

Do any of you remember when Conservatives didn't seem to be mentally unbalanced? I do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 28 Sep 12 - 07:55 PM

""He must think "broad-minded" means "having many interests" or something.""

More like "Fat Headed"!

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Sep 12 - 12:25 PM

Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: michaelr
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 08:10 PM
Bullshit, ake. I wasn't sneering; that post really cracked me up.

It was a funny error. I realised after posting that I'd posted something really dumb, but couldn't be bothered to post - yet again - to correct it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 28 Sep 12 - 12:19 PM

Not bad, John. But I think you're talking more about the GOP and the populist reactionaries of the Tea Party than about actual conservatives (Though there are some overlaps.)

The two most subtle fallacies of all:

Assuming that whomever you're trying to persuade can be persuaded by reason.

Assuming that your own logic is flawless.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 28 Sep 12 - 10:18 AM

Highly paid professionals work day and night to come up with more examples to screw us with.

Back to Haidt for a minute. He seems to be saying that conservatives and liberals tend to focus on different virtues, though he never says that either side dismisses the rest. Conservatives also supposedly attend to more of the enumerated virtues than liberals do.

Somehow the Slate reviewer concludes that "conservatives are more broad-minded." But that's absurd by definition, since "broad-minded" means "open to new ideas; tolerant; liberal," almost the exact opposite of conservatism. He must think "broad-minded" means "having many interests" or something.

The fallacy of not knowing what your own words mean.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: John P
Date: 28 Sep 12 - 09:28 AM

To understand conservatives all you have to do is be able to believe both sides of these pairs:

Government should stay out of our personal lives. Gay people should be discriminated against and women can't have abortions.

This is the Land of the Free. Burning the US flag should be illegal.

We must live according to what it actually says in the Constitution. The United States is a Christian country.

We must revere the Constitution. The ACLU is bad.

We are a democracy where everything should get decided by the will of the people. Unlimited corporate spending on elections is good.

Don't take away my American rights. It is my right to live in a society where I don't have to put up with gay people and non-Christians.

We have freedom of religion! Muslims should be singled out for extra scrutiny.

My family came to America 200 years ago. I'm an American. People who came to this country three years ago should go home or go to prison.

Sending jobs overseas is good for business and therefore for America. People who don't have jobs are lazy freeloaders.

The government should get their regulations out of the way of corporations and big banks, since the marketplace will regulate them just fine. Barack Obama caused the recession.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: John P
Date: 28 Sep 12 - 12:59 AM

Thanks, Lighter, those were fun. I got a good chuckle out of several of them. I wasn't fooled, though. The illogic blared forth from all of them. The hardest one for me was the Spurious Accuracy example. I hadn't thought of it as an actual fallacy; I just thought it was kind of dumb to get that exact with what were educated guesses at best. On reflection I can see where Spurious Accuracy can be used in a "logical" argument to create an unwarranted assumption of expertise, as well as being silly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 09:54 PM

John, you mean you were never fooled by things like these?:

http://www.fallacyfiles.org/examples.html

I sure used to be. Still am, according to many people.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: John P
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 09:10 PM

Learning to recognize a valid argument, and even to expect a sound argument, doesn't come naturally.

It did for me. I can't remember when my sense of rightness wasn't offended by illogic. Sunday School was a real trial for little six-year-old me. That was when I figured out that most adults were idiots who believed impossible things that had no evidentiary or logical basis. Maybe it's tied in with me being sort of a math whiz. My high school math teachers were all aghast that I wasn't going to become a mathematician, but it never really interested me. It did make complete and immediate sense, however.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Bill D
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 08:01 PM

"shouldn't that work equally on both liberals and conservatives? "

Not necessarily,,, because humans have the 'gift' of being able to look a 'sound' argument right in the eye and refuse to accept it. Rationality is often used in the sense of 'rationalizing'.... turning a series of points in ways to suit pre-digested conclusions.

Now, *IF* one has a position based on false premises, then it is easy to arrive at a conclusion that follows 'logically' from them. (A basic idea of philosophic logic... "From false premises, anything follows")

One of the things about many conservative principles is that they have the answers they want, and just need the proper questions...and rhetorical devices.

Liberals are not totally immune to this malady, but they 'tend' to be more willing to seek 'truth', no matter where it leads.

If I had 2 hours and were not leaving town in the morning, I'd go on at interminable length about how the two thought processes have some very different components. (hint- much religious thought MUST not stray TOO far from various positions-- think Galileo)


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 06:00 PM

OK, I've read the article linked by GfS.

Surely Haidt's book isn't as glib as the review, but maybe that's neither here nor there.

Anybody who's taught college freshmen knows Haidt is right when he says that reasoning in the methodical, critical style laid out by the Greeks is an artificially developed skill. You're not likely to pick it up adequately just by interacting with other people. Learning to recognize a valid argument, and even to expect a sound argument, doesn't come naturally.

But aren't feelings and emotions intertwined with reasons (reasons, not reasoning) rather than being as separate as the article makes them appear to be?

And if it only takes about two minutes for a sound argument to change your mind, shouldn't that work equally on both liberals and conservatives?


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 01:47 PM

I read this informative interview with Haidt. (Probably it's no substitute for his book, however):

http://www.christianpost.com/news/interview-jonathan-haidt-on-social-conservatives-new-atheists-and-civility-in-politics-74984/

Haidt advises us to respect opposing viewpoints and to just get along. Good advice. He's careful to distinguish conservatives (and libertarians) from Republicans. He seems less careful, though, to separate liberal Democrats from "New Age Democrats," the kind who think all political dilemmas are solvable by just being nice to the downtrodden. (Haidt also seems to suggest that Dems in general are stuck in a New Left groove from the '60s. I doubt it.)

Beyond that, his belief that conservatives "understand" liberals better than the other way around seems silly. What does he mean by "understand"? Follow their cogent or foolish arguments? Make allowances for their childlike or perceptive psychology? And which conservatives and liberals does he mean? Do those closer to the center have the same problems of "understanding" as those farther to the right or left? Are liberals really unimpressed by the virtues of loyalty, sanctity, and authority? Or are they just more wary of their abuse? I don't know, and I'm not sure that Haidt can either.

More importantly, in this interview Haidt doesn't address the extremely divisive influence of ceaseless demagogic voices on the populist reactionary side. They disguise themselves as "conservatives" and are eagerly accepted as such by much of the GOP.

Is there any equally strident populist left-winger as widely syndicated Rush Limbaugh et al? Do airwave demagogues have no significant influence on the the national lack of political civility and the tendency to "demonize" the opposition?

Though he may deserve it for other reasons, I suspect that Haidt is getting attention mainly because some of is statements can be reduced to the following simplistic slogans:

Prof Admits Conservatives Have More Understanding!

Atheist Prof Admits Religion is Good!

Ex-Liberal Says Liberals Don't Get It!

Ex-Liberal Says Conservatives Recognize More Virtues!

"Christians Are Happier!": Atheist

All of the headlines (which I've taken the trouble to make up myself) are more or less exaggerations or distortions of what Haidt says.

The fanning of the flames of "demonization," not by rank-and-file "conservatives" or "liberals" but by professionals, seems to me to be the biggest part of today's political divide. And it's been going on for nearly thirty years.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Stringsinger
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 01:44 PM

There seems to have been some thread drift. Coulter is not a conservative in the conventional meaning of the term. Conservatives have offered some useful advice before they were obliterated by the GOP.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 12:21 PM

The Conservative

As I was sitting in a chair
I saw the bottom wasn't there
Nor back nor legs, but there I sat
Ignoring little things like that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Bill D
Date: 27 Sep 12 - 09:45 AM

Did anyone actually read that article about Jonathan Haidt's book that GfS posted on the 24th? It is very interesting and IF there was a way to get a reasonable proportion of both liberals & conservatives to read & contemplate it, it could be important.
I have not read the book itself, but as far as the article goes, I think he misses one point: i.e., A large proportion of conservatives have built into their viewpoint the idea that they should NOT...and/or do not NEED to read such things. Haidt seems to be aware of that problem, as he points out (or claims) that BOTH sides 'tend' to adopt attitudes based on something other than reason, science and altruism.... he just doesn't emphasize enough the fundamental difference between just 'not trying' to understand the other side, and 'trying not' to understand the other side.

There's a lot to be considered on the whole subject.... one could design an entire university course around it, but I'm not sure who might enroll.....


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,999
Date: 26 Sep 12 - 09:30 PM

"Nonsense, Hawk. The Germans would still have lost, albeit it would have taken longer. You were selling us war material, because it was good business, long before you actually joined because of unrestricted submarine warfare (yes, there was a reason - they kept sinking your business)."

If that post was addressed to Little Hawk, it's incorrect. England and France declared war on Germany on September 3, 1939. Canada declared war on Germany exactly one week later. Little Hawk is a Canadian.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 26 Sep 12 - 01:05 AM

"Understanding 'Conservatives'"

Duh ..what's that??..I did too many hits of acid in my youth...but the flying saucer people told me they were from the 'Venus Police', and I was under arrest.............That was THEN, but now, I'm just a regular liberal!

GfS


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 25 Sep 12 - 06:17 AM

""We DID have many immigrants from the UK for our first couple of hundred years.""

Most of you WERE those immigrants in that period.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 11:37 PM

It has been said, that liberals cannot understand conservatives, and there is even a book out on the subject, because they are too self absorbed, small minded, and are not open to fuller ideas and concepts.

Hey, I didn't write the book....I just thought I'd throw that in, so maybe someone out there could just consider the 'possibility'
Here...besides Ann Coulter's book...

I didn't make it up!

GfS


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: michaelr
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 08:10 PM

Bullshit, ake. I wasn't sneering; that post really cracked me up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 07:49 PM

Anne Coulter is horrifying in almost every way possible. Sarah Palin, on the other hand, has some likeable qualities, even if she tends to be a loose cannon.

****

Lighter - I don't really think the Germans were notably less "civilized" than other western European nations. The world didn't end when they beat France in 1870. It would not have ended if they beat France in 1917 either. You're right about the aggressive Prussian military philosophy...it was very good for winning wars...but it did not turn the Kaiser's Germany into a monstrous regime like the Nazis who came later. Would there have been further wars in Europe anyway? Most certainly. There always are. You just have to wait awhile. The UK and Germany would probably have had another go at some point because of their naval and colonial rivalries, and the French and Russian would probably have siezed the moment to join the fight against Germany and regain some of their losses, as you say. The main advantage I see to Germany winning WWI is that it would have removed the possibility of the later Nazi Party movement from arising. The Nazis were a reaction to catastrophic defeat, national humiliation, and financial disaster.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 06:46 PM

Years ago she squared off in discussion with Phil Donahue.

And lost. Big-time. He made her look like a shallow, defensive egotist with a poor grasp of almost everything except the ability to name "conservative [sic] values." The difference between Coulter and Sarah Palin is that Palin is more entertaining and has a quicker sense of humor.

Coulter's reputation comes mainly from her appearance, her sarcasm, and her intentionally "outrageous" pronouncements about liberals.

That's all it takes for some people.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: catspaw49
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 06:24 PM

Let's talk about Ann Coulter. The skinny ultra conservative waste of feminine flesh or any other kind. Did you see on the ABC program with George Stephanopoulos where she claimed civil right was for blacks because we owed them. Latinos, gays, women, etc. have all been taken over by the Liberals and the Liberals have skipped away from the blacks? She then stated that Civil Rights was for blacks. The look on George's face was priceless.....look it up on Google. Worth the watch.


Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST, Lighter
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 06:09 PM

Except for the Holocaust, a German victory against Britain and France in 1918, with the U.S. still neutral, might not have been much better than a Nazi victory in 1941.

The Prussian militarist interpretation of Darwin would have been vindicated and rewarded, with many more tempting colonies to strive for. (That interpretation plus Central European antisemitism would have made a Holocaust with or without Hitler at least conceivable.)Control of European Russia would have given the hypothetical Reich a nearly inexhaustible store of resources. And even in WW1 the German army was not noted for its gentle treatment of occupied countries.

The upshot might have been a Second War anyway, primarily between Germany and the U.S., with the USSR possibly trying to reclaim the vast territory it lost to the Germans in 1917.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 05:40 PM

Yes, it's possible the Russians would have beaten Germany, McGrath. They definitely had a good chance of doing so, with or without the USA in the war, and it was they who bled the German Army white...but it was the western Allies who bled the Luftwaffe white. It's also possible that the Russians and Germans would have fought to an eventual stalemate, and the British and Germans likewise, in which case Germany would have remained the dominant power in continental western Europe for some time after, with a likelihood of further wars following.

****

Regarding those easy-to-remember principles about life that we've all discovered, Lighter...

I think we'd probably agree on a number of them. You mentioned:

"Life's a bitch."

Yeah...you can look at it that way if you want to, and everyone sometimes does. You can equally well look at it this way: Life is beautiful.

Both statements are true, given a certain emotional predisposition. That is, you can look on the dark side...or you can look on the bright side...and that's entirely up to you. Eeyore would agree that life is a bitch. It's his basic credo. Tigger would say that "life is great!" Either viewpoint seems valid from its own angle...but which one is more enjoyable?

"Shit happens."

If you want to see it that way, that's fine. It's just another way of saying, "We don't know for sure what will happen next", and almost everyone will agree with that.

"Don't believe everything you think."

Good one. ;-D I don't! A lot of my thinking is hypothetical, meaning I already know that I don't know...and may never know, but I still give it some thought from a hypothetical point of view. I don't necessarily believe what anyone else thinks either, including the usual authority figures such as the president, the Pope, the authors of the Bible, my elders, etc, but I'm usually willing to give what they think some consideration...generally speaking.

Let's see if we can come up with some more easy-to-remember principles.

How about..."if you treat other people in a shitty way, they will probably respond in kind."

And..."if you go looking for enemies, you will definitely find them."

And..."if you think like a hammer, everything looks like a nail."

And..."if you tell one lie, you'll soon have to tell a whole bunch more to cover it."


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 05:20 PM

The Great War without America? I suspect Germany would have won, or that there might have been a stalemate peace after the stalemate war, with Germany undefeated.

But in the Second World War if the Americans hadn't been forced in, I think it's likely that the Russians would still have beaten Germany. It would have taken longer. The American contribution to the Russian war effort was pretty small.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 05:01 PM

Previous GUEST was me.

Except for the British blockade, we'd have sold the Germans war material too. But it was impossible.

The fact is that most Americans wanted to stay out of the war, period. Wilson won re-election in 1916 partly on the slogan that he'd kept us out of it.

Despite the sinking of American ships, the Congressional vote for war was divided, 455-56.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Raedwulf
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 04:52 PM

Sorry for arriving late to the party ;-), but...

If the USA had not entered WWI, the Germans would probably have won it.

Nonsense, Hawk. The Germans would still have lost, albeit it would have taken longer. You were selling us war material, because it was good business, long before you actually joined because of unrestricted submarine warfare (yes, there was a reason - they kept sinking your business). A very crude summary, I'll grant you, but a bit more accurate than your's, I think! ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 04:43 PM

> The GOP agenda is radical, not conservative.

True. Remember Mitch McConnell's pledge that their top priority must be to unseat Obama.

That's "top priority." Republican actions since then mostly bear out McConnell's plan. So it wasn't just hot air.

Working mainly to unseat the President, and obstructing his every move, while the country drifts, sounds pretty radical to me.

Really, I can't imagine *either* Bush, or Reagan, or Ford, or even Richard Nixon coming out with a statement like that. (Well, Nixon maybe. But only maybe.)

For all his serious faults and limitations, I think G. W. Bush took the job of *governing* more seriously than most of the guys they have now. Because he supported the Medicare expansion Bush, like McCain, is now considered by the TP crowd as a secret "liberal."   Notice how the most recent GOP Prez wasn't even at the convention?


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 04:39 PM

"Bush spent like a drunken sailor."

Shouldn't that be updated to "spent like a Wall St. banker."


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Bill D
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 04:29 PM

"Don't believe everything you think."

*grin*...It took me years to extract that concept from the far easier one.. "Don't believe everything everyone else thinks."

When I was studying Phenomenology in college, Professor Alphonse Verdu explained about the need for humans to 'run around behind themselves' and examine objectively their own thoughts. Prof. Verdu's body language was worth the price of admission! He allowed that even the attempt was worth trying.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Stringsinger
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 03:38 PM

The GOPers and the Tea Party have hollow definitions of "freedom" and "liberty".
One definition is that they want the freedom to exploit others and want their liberty to do this. The gun is a symbol of coercion and this doesn't promote liberty or freedom but condign force in such illegitimate canards such as "Stand Your Ground" permitting self-appointed vigilantes to monitor others and kill them if they see fit.

"Conservatives" is a misnomer, today. The GOP agenda is radical, not conservative.
The misuse of this term probably stemmed from Barry Goldwater and notably from Reagan who was anything but truly conservative in his presidential dealings.

Actually, Bill Clinton was "conservative" because he saved the country lots of money, a surplus, which Bush spent like a drunken sailor.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 03:00 PM

Exactly, Bill

The American involvement in Vietnam was a perfect example of throughly mixed motives.

Nations do next to nothing from altruism. Aid to victims of natural disasters comes close, but it is generally a token amount.

But acting from perceived self-interest doesn't preclude acting at the same time for the right cause or (usually the case) the lesser evil.

Since events don't end neatly like movies do, it's easy to argue from results backwards and fallaciously to the original motivations, or to claim that the results show the motivations were ethically or politically insupportable from the start.

Here are three easy-to-remember principles that *I've* discovered. You can get them on bumper stickers. Don't argue with me.

Life's a bitch.

Shit happens.

Don't believe everything you think.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 02:38 PM

Exactly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 02:32 PM

Actually I think in most other countries someone with the politics of Barack Obama would be likely to be a natural member of a Conservative party. Centre right.


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Subject: RE: BS: Understanding 'Conservatives'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Sep 12 - 02:31 PM

Yeah, sure it's an opinion, Bill. What else would it be? We are all expressing our opinions when we post here. Do you find it shocking that mine don't always dovetail with your own?

I agree that situations are complex and that there can be multiple reasons (both pragmatic and altruistic) for an intervention, but I think USA policy is driven almost entirely by very pragmatic concerns about resources and political-financial power in the world...not by a concern for helping people in foreign countries. It may also be driven by popular mythology that is believed by the people spouting it. That's a definite possibility. People like Karl Rove probably DO think their philosophy leads to a better world. ;-D Hitler certainly thought so, and so did Stalin, Robespierre, Caesar, and any number of others in their class.

In that respect, the USA is little different from other major powers throughout history. On the one hand, it acts pragmatically and out of self-interest. On the other hand, it believes its own popular mythology and thinks it is on the side of truth, justice, and a better future for humanity.

Who among the great powers of history did not believe such things?


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