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Thread: The Lines Have Been Drawn

  1. #76
    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by NotAPretender View Post
    So how would you suggest I get to the right floor, Aragorn?
    Like I said, Donald J. Trump is a symptom, so you could start by looking at who voted for him ─ preferably beyond the stereotypical corporations, white-supremacists and other fringe groups ─ and why they voted for him. And I will give you the two main reasons too...


    • The 2016 elections were a choice between two evils, and people couldn't see any third way ─ or perhaps they didn't even want to contemplate a third way. Some US states don't even allow for third-party candidates to run for president or even to be voted on.

    • There are people who were feeling left out in the cold by the political establishment of the day, and given that Trump came from outside of that establishment, people thought he'd be a change for the better.


    Either way, it was through the existing voting system that Trump got into the White House. There was no military coup involved, nor any supernatural or extraterrestrial intervention.

    Of course, there was a certain degree of dishonesty involved, such as what Cambridge Analytica did with the information they got off of Facebook, and the extent to which Facebook allowed them to get away with it. And there may or may not have been Russian intervention ─ it is difficult to say, and even more difficult to pin it down on Vladimir Putin himself.

    But all things considered, while the dishonest tactics may have helped Trump in his electoral victory, I still think he would have won without it, and he's still enjoying the support from a large part of the US population. There are still people wearing MAGA hats. So that's what you have to start looking at. Why are those people supporting Trump? Why do they believe in him, in spite of the fact that he's a deranged buffoon, a narcissist, a nepotist and a Mussolini-wannabe?

    By the same token, why did so many people support Hillary Clinton, even though she's a megalomaniac who lies just as much as El Donaldo the Banana Republican™? Why didn't those people see Hillary for what she really is? After telling the corporate moguls that what she says in public isn't how she really feels or what she really plans to do? And after the way she destroyed Bernie Sanders' chances at running for Democratic nominee?

    Start there, and you'll get a lot closer to that second floor already.
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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  3. #77
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    ok...very good and a valid starting point. I guess my big problem is that all those things attributed to Hillary might have a basis in truth, but they have been twisted in a very complete fashion by the 'conspiracy' to maintain power by those ready, willing, and able to do ANYTHING to persist. Knowing that leaves me in a quandary, What do I believe and what do I not believe. Should I believe a conspiratorial faction or should I believe solely what I have witnessed, admittedly, through a glass onion as the Beatles once metaphorized?

    I don't believe the conspiracists. I know Hillary is a cold devious so in so but she is not a psychopath...maybe not, anyway. You see, I have been tainted. Perhaps, I do shade to the superficial in my analytical thought processes but that is what makes 'Trump' easy. He is there for all to see and it ain't good.

    yes, it is very basic and fundamental. It is our genetic heritage and its proclaimed selfishness dominating our higher will. It is animal behavior in action. I will maintain until the end, if we can't move beyond our animal, we are doomed as a species. Extinction is the road ahead. BUT, extinction isn't all bad, we 'modern humans' were the fruits of the even lower animals that preceded us.
    Last edited by NotAPretender, 2nd April 2019 at 16:36.
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  5. #78
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    It's very ironic that the same passions and discontent are fueling both Bernie fans and Trump fans. They're divided and yet they want very similar things.

    It could be that our leader will inadvertently bring people together. Americans may finally unite in reaction to something or another coming from the Administration.

    Things that are new(as far as I know):

    Open nepotism; Open flouting of laws; Widespread appointment of people to head agencies who can't do their job because they don't know what they're doing.

    I'm pretty sure there's not another time in this country's history where we had that.

    We've never had a President who leads chants to lock up regular Americans who are part of a political party. I'm pretty sure that's new too.

    It may be that these things are so over the top that they actually end up bringing people together. Uniting them.

    That would be the grandest irony of all.

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  7. #79
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    Another new thing:

    As far as I know, we have never had religion so thoroughly injected into politics like we do today. And it's not mellow religion. It's the fire and brimstone, Jesus and the Bible matter more that the Constitution kind of religion.

    Religious fervor can be the very thing that leads people to act on what was just wild fantasy before.

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  9. #80
    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dreamtimer View Post
    [...]

    It may be that these things are so over the top that they actually end up bringing people together. Uniting them.

    That would be the grandest irony of all.
    Alas, that's just wishful thinking. The average consciousness level, the average IQ score and the average attention span have all been in a steady decline for decades already. The George W. Bush administration also did some outrageous things ─ including starting two wars, breathing new life into the Cold War, creating the surveillance state, throwing human rights out the window by way of the Patriot Act, having people tortured and locked up for an undetermined duration without a fair trial, refusing to acknowledge the International War Tribunal in De Hague, willfully and systematically abusing and humiliating prisoners of war, and the promotion of Christian-fundamentalist creationism in schools as a substitute for evolutionary biology ─ and that was all between 2001 and 2009. It didn't make any difference then either.

    If Donald Trump gets re-elected for a second term, then things are just going to progress as they are now for the next four years. After that, people will deal with whoever gets elected next. And if Trump doesn't get a second term in the White House, then we can skip that four-year step and then it'll just be down to whatever the next president puts on the table, and then nobody will be talking about Trump anymore.

    It all boils down to what I've already said so many times before, i.e. that humanity's consciousness is locked into a hypnotic alpha state. It is more of an awareness than a consciousness, and this situation is only getting worse because of the accelerating pace at which the distractions start showing up. The whole of society is behaving as if it's got a combination of Alzheimer's and ADHD, and people's actions come from instinct, rather than from intellect.

    In addition to the above ─ and I'm sorry if I'm stepping on some American toes again, but it's the truth and it needs to be said ─ whatever alternative and/or intellectual ideas might garner a following within the USA will inevitably be inadequate for overturning the status quo, given that even self-proclaimed progressive US Americans are themselves products of the USA's centuries-old insular and self-important culture.


    "You cannot solve a problem with the same level of thinking as what created it."

    (Albert Einstein)
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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  11. #81
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
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    I agree with much of that Aragorn, and let's not forget Obama's continuation (albeit in a cool and polite way) of his predecessor with his own (conveniently forgotten) wars, drone strikes, going after whistle blowers, the National Defense Authorization Act, etc.

    Anyway, in sticking with the political aspect of this problem, nice as it would be to see Bernie and Trump voters recognize their similarities in being sick of the status quo, they'll never recognize this revolutionary potential because the battle lines are entrenched SO deep that they will never get past just trashing each other as Socialist and Fascist.

    And if somehow ever DID start to happen as it sometimes does every now and zen, the barking watch dog overseers of both tribes would soon enough engage, and put a stop to that shit by reminding them of why they despise each other so...
    Last edited by Fred Steeves, 3rd April 2019 at 15:22.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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  13. #82
    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Fred Steeves View Post
    I agree with much of that Aragorn, and let's not forget Obama's continuation (albeit in a cool and polite way) of his predecessor with his own (conveniently forgotten) wars, drone strikes, going after whistle blowers, the National Defense Authorization Act, etc.

    Anyway, in sticking with the political aspect of this problem, nice as it would be to see Bernie and Trump voters recognize their similarities in being sick of the status quo, they'll never recognize this revolutionary potential because the battle lines are entrenched SO deep that they will never get past just trashing each other as Socialist and Fascist.

    And if somehow ever DID start to happen as it sometimes does every now and zen, the barking watch dog overseers of both tribes would soon enough engage, and put a stop to that shit by reminding them of why they hate each other...
    And that then, Fred, brings me back to the problem with US American society in and of itself, namely that the idea of competition has been built into the fabric of the American way of life. Capitalism is about competition. The USA ─ like all fascist regimes ─ also puts a lot of emphasis on team sports, and thus on competition. The US military-industrial complex makes its living off of war and is always looking for an enemy ─ which is also a form of competition, i.e. "us versus them".

    Any which way you turn it, the concept of competition is a quintessential part of the American DNA. The switch has only two positions ─ either you're one or you're the other. And the switch may get flicked back and forth a couple of times over the years, but it's still a two-way switch, and it'll always remain a two-way switch, because the average US American doesn't know any better ─ they have no choice but to identify with one of the two sides of the same coin, because American Exceptionalism forbids that the USA as a nation would find inspiration from anything outside of the USA. US American culture is an export product, and the USA does not and will not import any cultural or intellectual values from outside of its own borders. Again, American Exceptionalism ─ the ludicrous belief that in spite of all of its internal struggling and all of its social unrest, the USA would still be superior to any other nation or culture in the world.

    And that brings me to another quote ─ I'm not sure who said it originally, but I believe this one may also have come from Albert Einstein...


    "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting different results."
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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  15. #83
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    <sniff><sniff> I can't say what I'm thinking...

    ok, I will anyway...

    I'm a believer in competition...but, I also believe if it is not conducted in a moral and ethical fashion...then it is not competition, it is cheating...And that is almost as a dirty word to me as lying.

    There was a point in my progression through life that I looked to Britain as my source for prognostication...what was good for the King was good for the reigning emperor in the U.S.

    Conversation is nice...but what really matters here...Sides? Yes...What is the constitutional makeup of a 'side'. Everyone draws their lines differently. Mine is drawn on values. To me nothing else matters. The rest is bullshit piled on by those that want to play games and then cheat on them. That's why we get nowhere.
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  17. #84
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
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    Well man, unlike most Americans I like hearing critiques from other viewpoints around the world. Conversely it never ceases to irk me when the wife and I sit down for the evening news (propaganda) how often a supposed news program such as ABC World News Tonight, will contain nary a mention of events outside of our borders.

    And often times even when they DO treat us to what the outsiders are up to, it's almost always something along the lines of a natural disaster, or how we can never trust this son of a bitch country or that. Dcause they are treaturous, conniving liars. And we (overall we) just LOVE to hear about the latest "evil doers" we are sticking it to with sanctions, or military threat and what not.

    We know not what we do overall, and I think that is not a natural phenomena.

    So anyway, the completion thing you bring up is interesting to ponder on. Now I see exactly where you're coming from with subliminal fascistic rituals such as military jet flyovers right after the National Anthem at NFL games for instance. I well remember going to Tampa Bay Buccaneer home games back in the day and feeling the hairs on the back of my neck stand up in exhilarating pride at watching the F 16's come thundering overhead.

    The program running in the back of my mind (probably the same as most everyone else) was something along the lines of "you're god damn right we're the baddest mother fuckers on this planet, don't mess with us or we'll fuck you 6 ways to Sunday!" I still cringe looking back and seeing that I used to think like that, to be THAT indoctrinated into The Program.

    At the same time though I can't see how competition is all bad either. Like when I was a kid playing little league baseball we always lined up and shook hands with the opposing team, win or lose. It's just a game. I view competion like the old adage in how it's used, like fire it can either warm your home in the winter, or burn it to the ground.

    So yes absolutely in the military sense of competition it goes to the absurd into flat out dominance, but what about all the technological innovations that have been bred of competition here? We can harness competition in much the same way we can harness the specter of our own impending deafh, to spur us into being sharper, to be the best we can be.

    Thoughts on that?
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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  19. #85
    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Fred Steeves View Post
    [...]

    At the same time though I can't see how competition is all bad either. Like when I was a kid playing little league baseball we always lined up and shook hands with the opposing team, win or lose. It's just a game. I view competion like the old adage in how it's used, like fire it can either warm your home in the winter, or burn it to the ground.

    So yes absolutely in the military sense of competition it goes to the absurd into flat out dominance, but what about all the technological innovations that have been bred of competition here? We can harness competition in much the same way we can harness the specter of our own impending deafh, to spur us into being sharper, to be the best we can be.

    Thoughts on that?
    As the matter of fact, yes, I have a few. See, the problem is that the USA is focusing exclusively on competition, which means that the two sides of the coin are always home to the two competing teams. But instead, the coin's sides could be otherwise populated, with one side of the coin being the competition itself and the other side being cooperation.

    Sports are competition-driven, and they can be fun, but only if you recognize that they are only sports and that after the game is over, both sides will shake hands and have a few cold ones together. If on the other hand you let the competition become your way of life, then you're going to remain stuck in having to share the cold ones with only those people who are of your own team, while plotting how to get back at the other team.

    There has to be a balance ─ a symbiosis. See where I'm going with this?
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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  21. #86
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Aragorn View Post
    There has to be a balance ─ a symbiosis. See where I'm going with this?
    Absolutely, I concur in spades with that entire post. Concerning your above summation. Back through the mists of time I asked a 30 something year old neighbor of ours to sign my 8th grade school yearbook. What he wrote was so simple and concise I hadn't really a clue what he was talking about, some silly adult nonsense I thought at the time.

    Funny this was though it always stuck, I never forgot it just as he advised:

    "Always remember Fred, balance is the key to life".

    Larry
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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  23. #87
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    F-16's ... I did some interesting avionics work on those things...I use to joke when people at work asked me what 'specifically' I was doing. I always answered that I was the one putting the flap in the Bird's wings...sometimes if they were high enough you really couldn't tell if they were planes or birds...no, it certainly wasn't Superman.

    My feeling as they flew over...What an amazing feat that humanity accomplished when taking to the air.
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  25. #88
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    I give up...I'm disgusted with the whole thing
    Last edited by NotAPretender, 3rd April 2019 at 19:41.
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  27. #89
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
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    I saw the unedited version of that post Adam. Don't sweat it man, I'm just a dumb working stiff banging nails for a living who happens to have opinions like every other jack ass out there.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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  29. #90
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    ok...
    "A large infusion of cash will cure most forms of fanatacism" - Thumbnail Biographies

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