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  1. #121
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ergophobe View Post
    European Socialists = Democrats
    I usually think of the Democrats as social-liberals (in the European sense) with tendencies toward left-wing populism, and the Republicans as liberal-conservatives, with tendencies toward right-wing populism.

    As you might expect, I deplore the bastardization of the term "liberal"; broadly defined, classical liberalism comprises the principles this country is ostensibly based on.

  2. #122
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Do you know what I find hilarious? Woody Allen throwing his support behind Roman Polanski.
    Yeah, I lol'd when I heard that over the news.

  3. #123
    Senior Member wildcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bananatrombones View Post
    The charges against Polanski are one issue; the circumstances of his detention at Zurich airport are another.

    Prosecutions here in the UK are pursued if they are deemed to be in the public interest.

    The question is, irrespective of the veracity of the allegations, whose interests are being served by Polanski's detention?

    Whether he's guilty or not at this point seems rather irrelevant.
    Exactly.
    The moralist is not objective.
    Moralism is about interest.
    Pietism is pharisaism.

    Jesus knew what.

  4. #124
    Nerd King Usurper Edgar's Avatar
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    Did Victor hijack wildcat's account?
    Listen to me, baby, you got to understand, you're old enough to learn the makings of a man.

  5. #125
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    No, they're just equally nonsensical and abstruse.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  6. #126
    Nerd King Usurper Edgar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    No, they're just equally nonsensical and abstruse.
    Well that does it then.

    Wildcat, I hereby knight thee an INFP.
    Listen to me, baby, you got to understand, you're old enough to learn the makings of a man.

  7. #127
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bananatrombones View Post
    The charges against Polanski are one issue; the circumstances of his detention at Zurich airport are another.

    Prosecutions here in the UK are pursued if they are deemed to be in the public interest.

    The question is, irrespective of the veracity of the allegations, whose interests are being served by Polanski's detention?

    Whether he's guilty or not at this point seems rather irrelevant.
    If it serves the interest of society to kill you and take your organs because we could use them to save 10 other people's lives, are we entitled to do so?
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  8. #128
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ergophobe View Post
    I hope it was clear that I think the liberal/conservative argument in this context is a poor one. Little that connects cause with effect. Having said that, I don't think the original argument made by Risen, if there was one, was a comparative one. He was making an argument based purely on how the terms are understood in American politics.

    *Not sure why I find the need to clarify his argument*
    I hope you didn't think I was criticizing your comment. My intent was to sort of give surrounding context. Sorry if it didn't come across that way.

    Since politics is what I've studied, it really raised my hackles to see these terms used in a very imprecise way. Now, many might think "how very un-ENTPy of you", but that's the point - this stuff is really damn important. Millions, if not billions of lives are constantly in the balance due to political decisions.

    Americans have this tendency to think of politics in mostly ideological terms, which proves to be a bit foolhardy after a substantial bit of study. We're taught all the time that "people will kill each other over beliefs - isn't that terrible?", but really, there's a conflation of motivation with intent. The motivation is often ideological, but the intent is usually grounded in desire, either for resources or dominion over others.

    That's more of what I was trying to get at, and why using terms as Americans understand them to describe European politics is problematic in my estimation.

    The above is yet another way of looking at the European liberal/conservative divide. You look at the intersection of ideology and class, I'm focused more on parties commonly seen across Europe and their political platforms. They are related, of course but not quite the same. I think it would be more accurate to connect the European socialists with the working class who form most of their electoral base. I'm not sure why the fascists would be connected to the bureaucracy except for their support for authoritarianism. Fascists or the radical right finds most of its support in unemployed working class folks and xenophobes.
    You'd agree it's much easier to conflate party identification and class in Europe, right? Like I alluded to - in a multiparty parliamentary system, it's much easier to select a candidate that most resembles your exact interests. Interests tend to be class-based. Marx's critiques were right; his prescriptions were utter garbage.

    The working class constitutes the vast numerical majority of any given population. I'd include most white-collar workers in this category as well - you're working class if anyone has the power to substantially alter your life within a year through entirely legal means without any volition on your own part. If you have more wealth than this, to where you could continue your current standard of living for a lengthy period of time without working, that by definition means you have capital.

    Fascism is connected with bureaucracy because of its emphasis on efficiency. You'd agree that the definition of fascism that I'm working with here is the confluence of corporate power with state power, to the point that government is reorganized to work in an analogical model of the human body, right? Bureaucracy is often seen as bloated and inefficient, but it's actually the most efficient way of dealing with the issues of span and scope that most organizations of that size are faced with. Rather than rely on human determination, procedure is simply followed - everyone knows what they have to do and it doesn't change. You can see where the appeal for xenophobes and the unemployed comes from - it minimizes the uncertainty in their lives.

    The distinctions exist here as well, whether they are translated into governing parties or not (due to the plurality system) here.
    The categorization you used above:
    European Socialists = Democrats
    European Conservatives = Republicans
    European Liberals = Libertarians
    European Greens = the same here
    The party that does get squished into the larger ones here is the radical right which is the far right base of the Republican party.
    I'd disagree with most of those. European-style socialists haven't been allowed in American politics since the Red Scare of the post-World War I era. They were much too useful as a scapegoat in the successive years, being thought of as spies, turncoats, anarchists (strangely enough) and terrorists. Of course, as Victor (shockingly) correctly alludes to, this is due to the enormous power of capital within the United States compared to Europe.

    European conservatives don't really have an analogue in the US, because the US traditionally doesn't value centralization of power, preferring devolution to state and local governing authorities. The only major intersection is the opposition to nationalization that both groups have - however, European conservatives don't support deregulation in the same way that American Republicans do, thinking it too "dangerous". They might correspond with Democrats here more than Republicans.

    However, European liberals I would say are much more confluent with the power centers of the American Republican party. Neoconservatives here are neoliberals everywhere else in the world, or what they would be if they had the big cash trough of a military that we do.

    Hope not to offend anyone, but the Green Party is so insubstantial in the US as to not warrant consideration, and will remain as such due to the intolerance the two-party system has for wildly divergent viewpoints.

    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    According to this evaluation of European political ideology, the European Union would constitute a fascist enterprise.

    Incidentally, every major European party that seeks power is in favor of empowering the "general populace" through a minimum-winning coalition; the socialists, problematic philosophical baggage from their pasts notwithstanding, simply seek to ensure that they and (their) trade unions wield as much power as possible within a corporatist framework.

    I've always found it quite funny that the European parties I most identified with usually referred to themselves as "liberal" and/or "democrat".
    I wouldn't characterize that interpretation of the EU as entirely inaccurate.

    Face it - there were only two winners of the Cold War: fascism and social democracy. The former put on a kinder, gentler democratic face so as not to draw unwanted comparisons to that nutbag in Germany, but the key components are still there: confluence of corporate (trade unions count as well) and state power, combined with preeminence of economic expansion in polity. They just got rid of most of the militarism and nationalism (if you're not the United States). The latter became more market-oriented, since let's face it, humans are greedy.

  9. #129
    Allergic to Mornings ergophobe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    I hope you didn't think I was criticizing your comment. My intent was to sort of give surrounding context. Sorry if it didn't come across that way.
    Not at all, was just clarifying my position too.

    Since politics is what I've studied, it really raised my hackles to see these terms used in a very imprecise way. Now, many might think "how very un-ENTPy of you", but that's the point - this stuff is really damn important. Millions, if not billions of lives are constantly in the balance due to political decisions.

    Americans have this tendency to think of politics in mostly ideological terms, which proves to be a bit foolhardy after a substantial bit of study. We're taught all the time that "people will kill each other over beliefs - isn't that terrible?", but really, there's a conflation of motivation with intent. The motivation is often ideological, but the intent is usually grounded in desire, either for resources or dominion over others.

    That's more of what I was trying to get at, and why using terms as Americans understand them to describe European politics is problematic in my estimation.
    Yes, I'm with you on using ideology as a cover up for other goals. I think this is especially true of political leaders. Followers, on the other hand, as much evidence shows, follow due to a variety of reasons, including ideology as presented to them by political leaders, falsely presented wrongs by the other however the other is defined, control of resources as well..

    My training is in comparative politics, in particular, so I am acutely aware of the problems of translation. Yet, I don't see a problem with people using the terms colloquially as long as they know these terms really only apply to popular politics here. After all, these terms are widely used by political scientists studying American politics here in their work.


    You'd agree it's much easier to conflate party identification and class in Europe, right? Like I alluded to - in a multiparty parliamentary system, it's much easier to select a candidate that most resembles your exact interests. Interests tend to be class-based. Marx's critiques were right; his prescriptions were utter garbage.
    Actually, many would argue that if you collapsed this myth of a large middle class here, you would have some conflation between socio-economic class and party identification here too. Don't we, in similarly colloquial terms, associate the Republican party with big business (owners of capital) and the Democrats with the working class?



    The working class constitutes the vast numerical majority of any given population. I'd include most white-collar workers in this category as well - you're working class if anyone has the power to substantially alter your life within a year through entirely legal means without any volition on your own part. If you have more wealth than this, to where you could continue your current standard of living for a lengthy period of time without working, that by definition means you have capital.
    I don't agree with this categorization. Working class still remains wage workers mostly and those associated with traditional occupations that require physical labor and a different skill set than white collar jobs. I don't doubt that they form a large percentage of most societies, yet there is no popular class. We wouldn't have a modern day bourgeoise in this schema! Outside of few jobs, even people at high level positions in corporate America can be fired/laid off by your definition - would they be working class? The middle class is also made up of white collar workers - your salaried professionals. These are people with benefits, let's not forget! This middle class has very different needs and political goals than the working class.

    Fascism is connected with bureaucracy because of its emphasis on efficiency. You'd agree that the definition of fascism that I'm working with here is the confluence of corporate power with state power, to the point that government is reorganized to work in an analogical model of the human body, right? Bureaucracy is often seen as bloated and inefficient, but it's actually the most efficient way of dealing with the issues of span and scope that most organizations of that size are faced with. Rather than rely on human determination, procedure is simply followed - everyone knows what they have to do and it doesn't change. You can see where the appeal for xenophobes and the unemployed comes from - it minimizes the uncertainty in their lives.
    Sure, bureaucracy certainly is an important institutional structure and could be more efficient or inefficient depending on the country. What appeals to xenophobes is not the stress on bureaucracy but the anti-immigrant rhetoric and similar for the unemployed who are also told its the immigrants taking their jobs. A stress on authoritarianism, using the bureaucracy as well as the military is the more recent form of fascism since WW II. A militarist single party state. This latter form is what far right parties adhere too - see Le Pen in France or the Austrian Haider, not a stress on an efficient bureaucracy as seen in traditional fascism.

    I'd disagree with most of those. European-style socialists haven't been allowed in American politics since the Red Scare of the post-World War I era. They were much too useful as a scapegoat in the successive years, being thought of as spies, turncoats, anarchists (strangely enough) and terrorists. Of course, as Victor (shockingly) correctly alludes to, this is due to the enormous power of capital within the United States compared to Europe.

    European conservatives don't really have an analogue in the US, because the US traditionally doesn't value centralization of power, preferring devolution to state and local governing authorities. The only major intersection is the opposition to nationalization that both groups have - however, European conservatives don't support deregulation in the same way that American Republicans do, thinking it too "dangerous". They might correspond with Democrats here more than Republicans.

    However, European liberals I would say are much more confluent with the power centers of the American Republican party. Neoconservatives here are neoliberals everywhere else in the world, or what they would be if they had the big cash trough of a military that we do.

    Hope not to offend anyone, but the Green Party is so insubstantial in the US as to not warrant consideration, and will remain as such due to the intolerance the two-party system has for wildly divergent viewpoints.
    European Socialists include the Labor party in Britain (as categorized by Comparativists), the socialists in France and the Social Democrats in Germany. You are putting them much further on the spectrum economically and socially than they warrant. These are not the Communists you refer to who do not have a space here since the red scare. However, socialists in Europe and the Democrats here have a lot in common -- progressive income tax, a stress on worker's rights, taking a more dovish approach to foreign policy. This is standard stuff across both. This is very much how socialists translate into parties in Europe as well.

    I think you'll have a hard time finding a Comparativist who would equate European conservatism with the Democratic party here. The European conservatists are the Conservatives in Britain, Sarkozy's party in France and the Christian Democrats in Germany, among others. Both conservatives in Europe and Republicans here do not support complete deregulation (seriously, which party in power or with access to power pragmatically believes complete deregulation is a possibility)? Both groups here and in Europe stress market economics but when it comes to national interest are all for subsidies (Europe sets the standard where subsidies are concerned)! They also support strong religious/moral values, a stress on traditional institutions and self-reliance --- beginning to sound familiar. Yep, Republican party.

    European liberals think the state should have no say in social affairs of individuals, no morality from the government - does that sound even remotely like the Republicans here? No. They are much closer to the libertarians when you look at their social and economic platform.

    Party systems - multiparty systems included, refer to parties that actually have access to power, not all existing parties. They're two separate questions, who people identify with and who actually gets access to policy making. We have the libertarians and greens here and there are people who identify with them regardless of whether they have access to power or not. We started with ideology in society and how it translates into parties. Whether these have power or not may affect who people vote for strategically but the same people may still have closer identification with the smaller parties.

  10. #130
    Senior Member matmos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    If it serves the interest of society to kill you and take your organs because we could use them to save 10 other people's lives, are we entitled to do so?
    I suspect my organs would hasten the demise of these 10 lucky people.

    Your scenario is of course not Pereto Efficient.

    Like when you're delivering pizzas 'round to Jaguar and the local kids beat you up and steal the pizza. Each gets a piece of the pizza you are delivering to Jag. Each of these feckless teenagers would say, "Beating that numpty simulatedworld to a pulp is for the general good."

    I would tend to agree.

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