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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:49 am 
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Nin, I always so much appreciate your posts and viewpoints.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:05 am 
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Nin, you are a wonderful reminder that the world doesn't consist of a spectrum with "liberal" at one end and "conservative" at the other—that whole social systems exist at 90 degrees to what Americans think they know. That's not the only reason I appreciate you (the five-leafed clovers you sent me during chemo ten years ago are definitely another! :D ), but it's a good one!

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:38 am 
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This is the thought of Griffin's that Jewel bolded:

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I just happen to think that I will be better off in a very different kind of world than your average right-winger or left-winger think they would be better off in.


I'm finding this idea a little hard to grasp. I think I misread it the first time, and thought she was saying, different people have different ideas about what we should do to make the world a better place. But is that what she was saying? Or was she saying, I have very different ideas about what sort of world it would be good to live in, than a right-winger or left-winger have?

If the latter, that struck me as kind of a drastic and disturbing thought at first, but as I thought about it, maybe Griffin is right, that people really differ in the kinds of world they want.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:44 am 
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Cerin wrote:
This is the thought of Griffin's that Jewel bolded:
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I just happen to think that I will be better off in a very different kind of world than your average right-winger or left-winger think they would be better off in.

If the latter, that struck me as kind of a drastic and disturbing thought at first, but as I thought about it, maybe Griffin is right, that people really differ in the kinds of world they want.


I do think this is true. I think we like to believe that "all of us want the same kind of world and we just differ on how to get there" but I do not believe this is the case. That is what I was trying to get at in this thread.

I wish Griffy would come back and elaborate a bit.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:53 am 
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This idea (that different people want a different kind of world) would go a long way in explaining the passion that attends political belief. It really isn't accounted for in a scenario where we're all working toward the same goal.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 7:50 am 
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Oh, I think people want mostly the same things for themselves. Security for their families and possessions, a supportive social circle, their physical needs taken care of and the freedom to pursue their spiritual, creative or material ambitions. I suspect that this is true about liberals, conservatives, Americans, Russians, Arabs, and Germans in 1930s.

The difference is in the kind of a world we wish for other people, especially people who are not like us.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 9:12 am 
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JewelSong wrote:
For instance, the Swiss have considered a referendum whereby all citizens, regardless of income, would get an annual "allowance" of something like $20,000. No welfare programs, no food stamps, no applying for assistance, no public housing. Everybody just gets a stipend. Poverty would be basically eliminated. Paperwork would be eliminated. Everyone gets an amount that *could* be enough to live on. If people wanted more (and most would) obviously they would need to work for it.


This would not necessarily eliminate poverty - in fact, I would say that it would not eliminate it. Countries with generous welfare systems and forms of income guarantee still have poverty, although it is admittedly rarer than in others. For example, a rational person could live on a subsistence wage, but that doesn't account for the mentally ill, those with substance abuse issues, and the like. The same sorts of people who are on the street now.

I think the premise of this thread is interesting, but I don't think that it will really divine the issues between different ideological perspectives. I find that people do not disagree on their ultimate goals so much, or even on the solutions - they disagree on what the problems are. In other words, what is stopping us from reaching some sort of universally-popular ideal.

For example, want to know how someone will vote in the upcoming U.S. election? Don't ask them "what would you do about X, Y and Z?", ask them "What are the biggest challenges the U.S. faces now?".


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:53 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
The difference is in the kind of a world we wish for other people, especially people who are not like us.


Outside from the very small group of consciously, explicitly bigoted people, do you really think that there are many people who, given a magic wand, would say "Alleviate the suffering of humanity - except for Those People"?

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:58 pm 
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of Vinyamar
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No, but many people feel that its unfair for people to get something for nothing. Its the whole "I worked for everything I have, why should they get it for free" mentality. I think we all suffer from that to some degree.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 2:20 pm 
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Sure, but when I hear "what's your vision for a better world?" I think "What's your utopia like?" and I really doubt a meaningful number of people's utopia would include continued misery for other people. Maybe I'm thinking of the question differently than other people.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 2:51 pm 
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That's how I'm taking it, and I'm having the same thoughts as you, yovi, about it all.

I guess I could see some people (hopefully not many) wishing that other groups of people they dislike didn't exist. That is different than including the concept of misery for certain groups in one's utopia. (It's still a disturbing thought to me, though. I'm sure I'd be on someone's list of people they wished didn't exist in their ideal world....)

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 2:56 pm 
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I've certainly known many an angry, arrogant atheist who would at least wish away all religious thought and feeling. I am glad that I am no longer an angry, arrogant atheist. :)

(My ideal world would include much cuddling with that lil fox in your sig. :love: )

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 2:58 pm 
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yovargas wrote:
Outside from the very small group of consciously, explicitly bigoted people, do you really think that there are many people who, given a magic wand, would say "Alleviate the suffering of humanity - except for Those People"?

I agree that the above is unlikely. More likely is that fewer people than you imagine would say, 'Alleviate the suffering of humanity' at all.

Consider the logical conclusion of the attitude, 'I shouldn't have to give any of my hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving'.' Should then someone else have to give their hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving'? Probably not. If no one should have to give their hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving', what then should happen to the 'undeserving'? Logically, they should be allowed to suffer and die. After all, that's what they deserve. Perhaps it is thought that the world would be better off without them. I think there might also be an attitude that giving people help only makes them weak and prolongs their suffering.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:08 pm 
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Cerin wrote:
Consider the logical conclusion of the attitude, 'I shouldn't have to give any of my hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving'.' Should then someone else have to give their hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving'? Probably not. If no one should have to give their hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving', what then should happen to the 'undeserving'? Logically, they should be allowed to suffer and die.


Two flaws in your logic that I see:

#1 - If no one gives away money to the "undeserving", the undeserving still have the option to try to earn their money. My company does not "give" me money, they trade me money for my labor.

#2 - In the statement "I shouldn't have to give any of my hard-earned money to help the 'undeserving'", the key issue (at least for the libertarian types) is the word "have". If you replace "have" with "choose" (and "undeserving" with "needy"), you wouldn't find too many people to agree with the statement - ie. "I shouldn't choose to give any of my hard-earned money to help the needy". Almost nobody anywhere is opposed to charity.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:10 pm 
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The question is about a better world and not about a perfect world. A perfect world could be Utopia, a better world.... Sweden?

I do think that the difficulty comes rather from the core values we place in the heart of our societies.

Yov, you might surprised, but I am rather opposed to charity.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:14 pm 
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I also don't believe that only a very small number of people are "consciously, explicitly bigoted." Look at religious bigotry, which is so open in many parts of the world that people murder each other over it. And other forms of bigotry are fairly common here in the West as well. People may deny that it is bigotry, but the effect of it is the same. They may believe there are sound, obvious reasons why "those people" shouldn't have help or shouldn't live next door, but the effect often is that the people in question don't receive equal treatment and equal opportunity.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:18 pm 
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yovargas wrote:
Sure, but when I hear "what's your vision for a better world?" I think "What's your utopia like?" and I really doubt a meaningful number of people's utopia would include continued misery for other people. Maybe I'm thinking of the question differently than other people.

Wouldn't it? Then how come a presidential candidate whom everyone considered to be comic relief at best became the front runner as soon as he said "let's deport all Mexicans"?

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:26 pm 
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I think there are a number of people (and not a small number) who would much prefer to live in a world with other people who were like them. Same beliefs, same customs, same foods, same language, same morality...same.

The whole "Celebrate Diversity" thing is fine on the surface, but many people really would prefer to observe diversity from a distance and not have to, you know, actually deal with it.

In addition, I think groups of "same" people want to believe that they are somehow better and more deserving than the "others." And therefore, the "others" must be not as "good" in some way. It seems that for a fair number of people, their happiness can only happen when the "others" are less happy, if not downright miserable.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:57 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
Wouldn't it? Then how come a presidential candidate whom everyone considered to be comic relief at best became the front runner as soon as he said "let's deport all Mexicans"?


For lots of reasons, but very few of those reasons include actively desiring misery upon the Mexicans. They mostly include indifference towards their suffering. If there was a zero-effort way to relieve the suffering of all Mexicans and get them out of the US, I believe pretty much all those Trump supporters would take it.


Nin wrote:
Yov, you might surprised, but I am rather opposed to charity.


Yes, I am quite surprised. Why in the world? :?

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:05 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
yovargas wrote:
Sure, but when I hear "what's your vision for a better world?" I think "What's your utopia like?" and I really doubt a meaningful number of people's utopia would include continued misery for other people. Maybe I'm thinking of the question differently than other people.

Wouldn't it? Then how come a presidential candidate whom everyone considered to be comic relief at best became the front runner as soon as he said "let's deport all Mexicans"?

Did Donald Trump advocate deporting all Mexicans, or just those here illegally? Do you think he advocated deporting illegal Mexicans because he wants them to be miserable? I think it’s more likely he did so because the presence of so many people coming here illegally is viewed as a problem by many, especially those living in the areas where the border crossings occur. Granted, he may not care if his solution makes the people who are deported miserable, but I seriously doubt that is the primary aim of the policy.

Why did the policy statement result in his increased popularity? I suspect it is because lots of people see this illegal immigration as a big problem. Again, I imagine not too many of the people who support the idea are losing sleep over the misery it would cause those who are deported, but once again, I doubt that for most, causing the misery is their primary reason for supporting the idea.

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