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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    The vast majority of people I know would agree. And the vast majority of Americans, I would bet. You're talking about hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars over a lifetime. Voting really has little to do with my life situation, and I am not unusual.
    No, you are correct, short-sighted people are not unusual.

    People in the US giving up their right to vote is substantially changing the constitution and form of government. The entire principal of sacrificing your right to vote over someone "promising" that you wouldn't have to pay taxes is frankly...ridiculous. You're opening yourself up to any kind of bullshit with that, including a totalitarian government.

    Short-sighted. Not unusual for people in general, and definitely not unusual for a libertarian.

  2. #62
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marmalade.sunrise View Post
    No, you are correct, short-sighted people are not unusual.

    People in the US giving up their right to vote is substantially changing the constitution and form of government. The entire principal of sacrificing your right to vote over someone "promising" that you wouldn't have to pay taxes is frankly...ridiculous. You're opening yourself up to any kind of bullshit with that, including a totalitarian government.

    Short-sighted. Not unusual for people in general, and definitely not unusual for a libertarian.

    Again, you are proving you fundamentally misunderstand just about everything. Let's break it down:

    First of all, I never wrote anything about "changing the Constitution and form of government." I wrote that I would give up voting forever if I were guaranteed to be free of all taxes forever. That is completely rational, and there is nothing short-sighted about it. My wealth and my freedom would both increase, and the same would be true for almost everyone. The corollary would be this: the government would be unable to raise the kind of revenue that would be needed to BE totalitarian. How would the government afford to enslave us if it were only receiving money from people voluntarily? Do you even bother to think about hypotheticals? You are so knee-jerk that it's shocking.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Again, you are proving you fundamentally misunderstand just about everything. Let's break it down:

    First of all, I never wrote anything about "changing the Constitution and form of government." I wrote that I would give up voting forever if I were guaranteed to be free of all taxes forever. That is completely rational, and there is nothing short-sighted about it. My wealth and my freedom would both increase, and the same would be true for almost everyone. The corollary would be this: the government would be unable to raise the kind of revenue that would be needed to BE totalitarian. How would the government afford to enslave us if it were only receiving money from people voluntarily? Do you even bother to think about hypotheticals? You are so knee-jerk that it's shocking.

    Not necessarily. If you were a convicted felon in a United States prison for the rest of your life you'd simultaneously lose your right to vote AND never have to pay taxes again.

    Is that hypothetical enough for you?

  4. #64
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    First off, you know for someone who later espouses similar thinking to my own I find it very strange that you think me foolish.
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    Not as much as addressing the fact that he is claiming an abstract ideal that wouldn't exist without the hard material existence of the very things he claims to be transcending.
    I claim no transcendence, I am merely looking at the downsides of the current system. Hard material be damned too as most of it isn't hard it's people's expectations and traditions. I consistently fail to care about those.
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    I see it more as a reminder to understand the world as it is, rather than what you think it might be.
    You do know that we're probably talking from completely different backgrounds too. Perhaps if you offered more insight and made less attempts as derision we'd be able to find common ground?
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    You can criticize the system by pointing out its flaws. You can't criticize it by saying it doesn't exist in the first place.
    You can't claim that democracy exists and then put a whole load of caveats on it which basically add up to it not existing but someone once had the intention of making it exist but in the process it got modified.

    Surely in a system where the leader is responsible to the populace you wouldn't have leaders who can basically raise two fingers to the populace and declare they don't care and yet they do. At present we've got a man leading our country who I've yet to find a single supporter for and yet we are waiting for him to say when we can depose him, until he declares we can do nothing. Now surely a group of people who are supposed to represent the larger whole can do something about this? No because someone decided that giving people control would be too slow for them, they decided that they should be given a fair period to work in and so you can't change them until they declare or until their allotted time runs out.
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    His scrutiny is immature and overly broad. It denies the very apparent reality of the world. It's as useless as saying unicorns exist.
    I assure you that I'm no raving loon. I have a wife in politics and a father who's intimately familiar with the civil service. I live partially in politics.

    Again, perhaps if you reasoned your responses instead of resorting to accusations of not knowing something which would make me agree with you then we can converse. Is that not the point in posting?
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  5. #65
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xander View Post
    First off, you know for someone who later espouses similar thinking to my own I find it very strange that you think me foolish.
    Sorry, when it comes to politics, I just can't allow certain types of thinking to go by without such a response - too much is at stake.

    I claim no transcendence, I am merely looking at the downsides of the current system. Hard material be damned too as most of it isn't hard it's people's expectations and traditions. I consistently fail to care about those.
    The problem is that you're still dealing with people. People who will put a bullet in your head if you vary from those expectations and traditions too much. Like it or not, this is how the world works. You can't just wish this away. Rather, you have to change the nature of these expectations and traditions to where they don't feel variation from social norms deserves death. That requires education.

    You do know that we're probably talking from completely different backgrounds too. Perhaps if you offered more insight and made less attempts as derision we'd be able to find common ground?
    No, I understand this. However, what I'm saying is applicable for the entire developed world. I'm only derisive because the nature of our social connections are so obvious, from my perspective, to claim some sort of platonic sense of freedom without understanding that this freedom only exists because others have agreed not to take it away from you is the height of arrogance.

    You can't claim that democracy exists and then put a whole load of caveats on it which basically add up to it not existing but someone once had the intention of making it exist but in the process it got modified.
    These are just descriptive words, not platonic ideals, as I mentioned before. There is no form of government that we can accept as "democracy" per se. We just have governments that are more and less democratic.

    Surely in a system where the leader is responsible to the populace you wouldn't have leaders who can basically raise two fingers to the populace and declare they don't care and yet they do. At present we've got a man leading our country who I've yet to find a single supporter for and yet we are waiting for him to say when we can depose him, until he declares we can do nothing. Now surely a group of people who are supposed to represent the larger whole can do something about this? No because someone decided that giving people control would be too slow for them, they decided that they should be given a fair period to work in and so you can't change them until they declare or until their allotted time runs out.
    Wouldn't you agree that the vox populi is a rather fickle thing, and that the lack of stability of constantly having parliamentary elections would delegitimize the Government?

    I assure you that I'm no raving loon. I have a wife in politics and a father who's intimately familiar with the civil service. I live partially in politics.

    Again, perhaps if you reasoned your responses instead of resorting to accusations of not knowing something which would make me agree with you then we can converse. Is that not the point in posting?
    One of many points. It's clear from that response that you're an intelligent guy. I guess my question is why you came with a political opinion that seems more akin to what an angry 17-year-old would say during a rebellious phase rather than incorporating an understanding of some of the immutable realities of human society.

  6. #66
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    No, I understand this. However, what I'm saying is applicable for the entire developed world. I'm only derisive because the nature of our social connections are so obvious, from my perspective, to claim some sort of platonic sense of freedom without understanding that this freedom only exists because others have agreed not to take it away from you is the height of arrogance.
    I disagree.

    People, by nature of their own existence, always have the freedom of choice to do as they wish. The law and tradition can only decide the official CONSEQUENCES of the choice if it's discovered. They can influence your choice, but only you can choose to take advantage of freedom. But choice is inherent in everyone in such a way that law cannot completely take it away. There's always the things you do when no one's looking, conversations behind closed doors. People always find a way to get around restrictions to do what they please, if they're determined enough to take the risks. There are bands of outlaws even in the most restrictive regimes, and many of them manage to evade justice.

    A government cannot give you freedom, it can only attempt to minimize the consequences for those who choose it. There are always consequences for choosing freedom, so most people don't choose it even in such governments. Basically, I deny that our freedom belongs to the government, and that it can bestow it upon us. It cannot give what it cannot completely take away. To assume such deifies the government and society to an unhealthy degree. Governments may try to oppress people, but they can only tighten their grip so much before they fall apart.

    Can you tell me of a society in which outlaws never existed, or in which 100% of them were found and prosecuted?

    And tell me this... if they truly took people's freedom away completely, how did the bands of rebels ever organize? Because they already had freedom on some level, though it was officially punished, despite the attempts to limit it. They can only discourage the use of freedom, not take it away.

    You may shoot me in the head for speaking my mind, but you cannot stop me from doing it in the first place. That's a risk even in America. Remember Martin Luther King?

    Islamic countries may seem restrictive because a woman can't leave the house with her face uncovered, but guess what happens in America if a woman leaves the house with her breasts uncovered, or a man leaves the house with no pants on? It's not that different if you think about it... it varies only in degree. Even so, I'm sure there are people that have streaked in Islamic countries despite the consequences (though they were probably killed, admittedly). People are crazy. Assuming that you can control people with laws that have rationally undesirable consequences, or give them freedom by not discouraging it officially, is to assume more rationality and respect than you can assign to human beings.

  7. #67
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    Sorry, when it comes to politics, I just can't allow certain types of thinking to go by without such a response - too much is at stake.
    LOL... you must live in a very reactionary area. They had the leader of what is considered the british version of the Nazi party on question time and relatively civilisation survived with but a burp of media frenzy.

    This is the problem with forums, what we needed was a cuppa in a quiet corner and the damn machine is always broken round here!!
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    The problem is that you're still dealing with people. People who will put a bullet in your head if you vary from those expectations and traditions too much. Like it or not, this is how the world works. You can't just wish this away. Rather, you have to change the nature of these expectations and traditions to where they don't feel variation from social norms deserves death. That requires education.
    I tend not to fear the hordes of simple minded shotgun wielders. They're mostly lemmings and tend to die out. It the one's who won't shoot but who want to "educate" you that I fear. I fear them because they've been so damn successful that no one considers that the situation may need reviewing. Like education, moving away from passing exams and moving back to learning, most look at me like I've gone insane!!
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    No, I understand this. However, what I'm saying is applicable for the entire developed world. I'm only derisive because the nature of our social connections are so obvious, from my perspective, to claim some sort of platonic sense of freedom without understanding that this freedom only exists because others have agreed not to take it away from you is the height of arrogance.
    “You are not free whose liberty is won by the rigour of other, more righteous souls. Your are merely protected. Your freedom is parasitic, you suck the honourable man dry and offer nothing in return."
    This much I understand which is why I understand that the onus for security is placed upon the individual and not the police.
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    These are just descriptive words, not platonic ideals, as I mentioned before. There is no form of government that we can accept as "democracy" per se. We just have governments that are more and less democratic.
    Precisely but that does not ever equate to good vs evil unless you believe that democracy is some kind of objective good.
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    Wouldn't you agree that the vox populi is a rather fickle thing, and that the lack of stability of constantly having parliamentary elections would delegitimize the Government?
    Oh hell yeah but I would like to see implemented similar systems to the australians in britain just so when I've looked at all the candidates I can register my vote that not one of them is good enough, go back and try again.

    I find it highly suspicious that governments are voted in "by the people" but those people are 51% of the 35% that turned out to vote. So in other words something like 17% of the people of that country actually support the rulers... that indicates a vast majority of 83% who are either indifferent or aren't supporting the rulers.
    Quote Originally Posted by onemoretime View Post
    One of many points. It's clear from that response that you're an intelligent guy. I guess my question is why you came with a political opinion that seems more akin to what an angry 17-year-old would say during a rebellious phase rather than incorporating an understanding of some of the immutable realities of human society.
    Because I refuse to kow tow to the system as is. Many people seem to enter the system with the mindset of "if you want to change the system you have to be part of the system" and then they get handed instructions and filed off into stations and basically compartmentalised until they have little effect. Similar to society, if you dropped a real genius off in a village I'd put money on him or her being ostracised and subject to derision more than the village idiot.

    People look for whether you conform or not, they don't look for, care or understand anything more. Hence to underline that I'm actually disagreeing and daring to say no, I underline my objections.

    That and if you were looking for someone who would blow up parliament, you just found one.

    Btw, not sure how familiar you are with the british system but don't you ever wonder what the point is in voting? I mean sure you vote in the leaders but their instructions are still interpreted by the same civil service as the last time and we all know that in large organisations people can lose instructions very well. There's so many sofas in those places!!
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  8. #68
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Going back to the original question, democracy has to equal ignorance because the voting public aren't educated in what they're voting on, those voted for aren't constrained by what they were elected for and there is little the voting public can do once they have elected someone to actually influence the decisions made. Ergo you're putting someone in power ignorant to what they will do with it. You guess.
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  9. #69
    Courage is immortality Valiant's Avatar
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    Democracy is like equipping a car with a dozen small engines each running a wheel in its own direction.
    I prefer even monarchy over democracy, to be quite honest. And i'm not a royalist by a long shot.
    A country - the world preferrably - needs a strong leader in order to reach full potential.
    Infighting has never been good for anything. If a leader could unite the entire world, anything could be built and accomplished.
    There would probably be great sacrifice for some, but it would be glorious for the human race to work as one single unit to accomplish great things like space exploration and ending famine/unemployment etc for good.
    No more economic interests at war.

    Democracy is conservatism and it is halting humanity's progression in favor of some twilight humanistic retard ideal.

    Mightier than the tread of marching armies is the power of an idea whose time has come

  10. #70
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xander View Post
    Going back to the original question, democracy has to equal ignorance because the voting public aren't educated in what they're voting on, those voted for aren't constrained by what they were elected for and there is little the voting public can do once they have elected someone to actually influence the decisions made. Ergo you're putting someone in power ignorant to what they will do with it. You guess.
    But aren't you commenting more on the British government, since that's where you live?
    I don't know how different the British gov't is from the American gov't when you get down to brass tacks, but it's possible that what you're saying doesn't quite apply over here the way it does over there... unless you've been studying American politics?

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