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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#17921 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted Yesterday, 16:26

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-February-27, 14:47, said:

I am more and more concerned that we in the U.S. are blindly stumbling toward an American Spring, a type of anti-Arab Spring where the goal is greater authoritarian control and less liberal democracy.

One of the bigger reasons for my concern is the lack of diversity in points of views that our media has decided newsworthy. For example, only today there was a headline about some old Fox news lady who pulled her children out of school for some wacko reasoning - why should that be newsworthy? Only because she has some kind of audience - and she only has an audience because she has been promoted.

We are in for a great fall - and I really don't see how all the pieces can be put back together again.


very true - Luis Rooten wrote a little poem about it

Un petit d'un petit
S'閠onne aux Halles
Un petit d'un petit
Ah! degr閟 te fallent
Indolent qui ne sort cesse
Indolent qui ne se m鑞e
Qu'importe un petit d'un petit
Tout Gai de Reguennes
non est deus ex machina; 鋠en maskiner beh鰒er lite k鋜lek; Sch鋗en sich Roboter, wenn sie l黦en?
J'ai toujours mis?sur l'閠range gentillesse des robots
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#17922 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted Yesterday, 16:44

View Postpilowsky, on 2021-February-27, 14:20, said:

The USA is constructed on the central big lie that everyone "believes". E Pluribus Unum. From many comes one.

This tiny phrase suggests to Americans that anyone, no matter their circumstances, can rise "like some rough beast, its time come round at last, and slouch towards Bethlehem". To paraphrase.

As a sidebar, the word 'bedlam' comes from the name of a major psychiatric hospital (my sister worked there) called Bethlehem (contracted to bedlam.
I'm pretty sure that quite a few of the occupants of this hospital also thought that they could become President at one time or another.

Of course, this is BS. Less than half of the people legally present in the USA can become President. And that's just based on citizenship and age.

The reason it's called the American dream is that it's only present in your dreams.

The Australian dream is to own a house. This is a much more achievable objective - around two-thirds of the Australian population have owned their own domicile. It's similar in the USA.
You don't lose your home in Australia if you have to pay medical (or electricity in Texas) bills.

I had the same sense of existential anxiety when living or working in the USA when visiting Iran.
At least the white people in the USA don't have to worry about being picked up on the street and imprisoned for no good reason by other white people.

I suspect that people develop these crazy notions because they watch too much television or other forms of entertainment that have no aesthetic value.
Someone once commented that the difference between art and pornography is that in a porn film, there is no story, 'actors' move from one scene to another doing things - alone or in groups.
The same applies to much of the 'product' in books, film and song. There is no aesthetic value; the action just rolls past your eyes like a duck (so to speak).


One of the reasons "people develop these crazy notions" is because in our own lives the American Dream reflects reality as we have experienced it.

Some of us, I hope many of us, are willing to discuss how the American Dream can become reality for others.

Added for amusement: It's true that my father was ineligible to be president. I can't recall hin ever expressing any bitterness over that fact.
Ken
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#17923 User is offline   y66 

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Posted Yesterday, 20:15

From Noah Smith interview with Saikat Chakrabarti, creator of the Green New Deal:

Quote

Another idea we've advanced has been to return the Federal Reserve System back to its roots as a network of regional development banks. So while the FFB/NRDC focuses on national-level development strategies, a network of regional development banks can bring in the kind of bottom-up input necessary to have successful national development. To do this, the Fed would expand its direct-to-business lending to support productive small and medium sized businesses--similar to the Sparkassen in Germany. And unlike today, where the NY Fed makes the biggest financial decisions, the Fed would empower its regional banks to develop their respective regions. The Fed could be informed by the NDS put out by the NRDC every year to guide its investing decisions while also feeding information about what's actually working on the ground back to the NRDC. This would be a great way to rebuild, with some intentionality, the small and medium businesses that are dying by the millions right now due to the COVID-19 recession.

But beyond policy, successful national economic development will take a different kind of political leadership than what we're used to. We need leaders who are willing to take risks, be creative, throw out ideas when they aren't working and double down when they are, think outside the box to call the nation to action, and always be pushing to go bigger and faster. Just as an example, a few weeks ago some of us at New Consensus began digging a bit more into our vaccine production bottlenecks. New Consensus put out an op-ed arguing for going faster since if we can shave off even a couple months in vaccinating all of America, we could save hundreds of thousands of lives. Worst case, we would end up with the capacity to vaccinate the rest of the world faster, which we will need to do if we don't want COVID-19 to become a yearly disease like the flu. But when we started looking into what the actual bottlenecks are in mRNA vaccine development, we mostly came across articles arguing for why we can'tdo it. These articles are interesting and I'd encourage the reader to read them, but the argument boiled down to our inability to make more of these nanoassembly machines and train enough people to operate them. This sounded surprising to us--if only a handful of these machines are making our supply right now, how could we not possibly make more of them? My colleague Zack Exley and I called a few people in industry who work on vaccine manufacturing to see if maybe we were missing something--perhaps these machines were incredibly hard to make? But the people we called, including someone at a company that makes these nanoassembly machines, thought we could easily build more in a matter of weeks. So why isn't Biden pushing to invest in building more of these machines now to ramp up our production?

The point of this anecdote isn't to say that there is one weird trick to upping vaccine production by building more nanoassembly machines. Even if these machines are the only bottleneck now (which I'm skeptical of), as soon as we fix it there will be a new bottleneck. My point is we need the kind of political leadership that tries to relentlessly figure out what we should be doing to go faster and does it. With vaccines, the only reason to not make more doses faster would be if there is some raw material we have to get from nature that we are running out of. But then our leaders should ask, why not make a synthetic version of it? We need leaders who assume there is a way to do better instead of assuming we're doing the best we can.

This is, unfortunately, the opposite of how most of our political leaders act today. From my time in Congress, I learned that politicians in America are greatly incentivized to do as little as possible as long as it doesn't get them in trouble. The consequence for action and failure is obvious to them--you get attacked in political attack ads and probably the media. Also your colleagues won't like you because you are the annoying person asking uncomfortable questions and telling people they could be doing a better job. But we need politicians to realize that often, the consequences for trying and failing are minimal compared to the consequences for not trying at all. We need leaders who are brave enough to question, break through barriers, and drive progress even when there isn't public pressure to do so. Without that, I fear even the best designed institutions and industrial policy will not get us very far.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#17924 User is offline   thepossum 

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Posted Yesterday, 20:30

View Postpilowsky, on 2021-February-26, 16:34, said:

It turns out (naturally), that the place of atheists (like me) in society is a well-studied topic.

....


I would regard myself as a secular Christian upbringing atheist (who tried to incorporate and make sense of half a dozen other major traditions etc) with a lifetime of complex experiences who has a distrust for some high profile outspoken atheist types due to their rather limited lens on the world and human experience. They/many atheists seem to deny the sophistication and complexity of human evolution, cognition, psychology, and what all the different philosophical/religious interpretations and representations of those things could be.
I prefer to work out and question (as a scientific type) what things mean(how they came about) rather than mocking them which is a common approach.
Note - regarding your comment on locus of control is it not the case that possibly the majority of the world has a very little power/control (and entitled to feel it is largely external) and many of those who mock/similar word have huge power

I feel that some extreme atheistic pronouncements/attitudes are on a par with the distrust I have with techs running our world

PS I remember when I first visited Indonesia I was advised to call myself a Christian rather than an atheist. It was a safer approach :)

PPS As an afterthought I should be careful what I say about papers from one of my associated (and trained) professional groups, but I do find the nature of much psychological research (including my own) to be rather frustrating in how it is researched, analysed and written up. It too seems to lose the complexity of the human mind. This thing appears not to be correlated with this but it is with that kind of thing
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#17925 User is offline   thepossum 

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Posted Yesterday, 21:05

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-February-27, 14:47, said:

I am more and more concerned that we in the U.S. are blindly stumbling toward an American Spring, a type of anti-Arab Spring where the goal is greater authoritarian control and less liberal democracy.

One of the bigger reasons for my concern is the lack of diversity in points of views that our media has decided newsworthy. For example, only today there was a headline about some old Fox news lady who pulled her children out of school for some wacko reasoning - why should that be newsworthy? Only because she has some kind of audience - and she only has an audience because she has been promoted.

We are in for a great fall - and I really don't see how all the pieces can be put back together again.


I am curious how to reconcile this with the recent celebration of the Democrats' (EDIT fixed apostrophe - more than one Democrat) success :)
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#17926 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted Yesterday, 21:14

View Posty66, on 2021-February-27, 20:15, said:



Just out of interest Mr 66, what is your personal opinion of all these quotes that you post?
non est deus ex machina; 鋠en maskiner beh鰒er lite k鋜lek; Sch鋗en sich Roboter, wenn sie l黦en?
J'ai toujours mis?sur l'閠range gentillesse des robots
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#17927 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted Today, 09:11

View Postthepossum, on 2021-February-27, 21:05, said:

I am curious how to reconcile this with the recent celebration of the Democrats' (EDIT fixed apostrophe - more than one Democrat) success :)


Just because your troops remove an enemy sniper doesn't mean you have won the war.


PS: Here is an example of the continuing war:

Quote

PHOENIX — A Republican lawmaker wants to allow the Arizona Legislature to overturn the results of a presidential election, even after the count is formally certified by the governor and secretary of state — and even after Congress counts the state’s electors.

This post has been edited by Winstonm: Today, 10:04

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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