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  1. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blank View Post
    @DiscoBiscuit There's a fundamental problem with the premise that capitalism and patriotism are compatible. They aren't. If you call yourself a capitalist, you shouldn't call yourself a patriot and vice versa. Capitalism has no nationality. It is loyal to no country. Capital will be produced as cheaply as it can in any nation it can. It's about time people realized this.

    Some would argue that issuing tariffs on foreign goods and penalizing companies for outsourcing could solve a lot of problems. It could. But it's completely unrealistic due to the shitstorm it would cause in the political landscape. Not to mention that tariffs offset the hand of the free market; something which goes against capitalism.




    I personally think that either the goal of capitalism (to produce as many goods as cheaply as required) or the need for patriotism needs to be re-evaluated before any serious framework adjustments can be made.
    The black and white choice between capitalism and patriotism doesn't exist, when either concept is taken to the extreme the people lose.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric B View Post
    Excellent points! Again, many conservatives are operating off of a patriotic premise; but one that assumes capitalism represents the best interests of the nation, because they see it as following “the principles” of the founders. (I think my last post included a link to an article showing that corporations weren't even what the founders envisioned in the Constitution).
    So they cannot address the fact that these corporations and executives are taking money out of the country, or sitting on it somewhere. They have to blame this all on taxes and
    “handouts” to the “undeserving”.

    As for Romney, wasn't he the one the other GOP candidates/supporters claimed was the most like the liberal Dems? (Big govt. etc). If he gets in, will conservatives eventually begin
    decrying him as another Bush, RINO, virtual Democrat/liberal etc. once the “gone 2012” euphoria wears off (and things haven't magically gotten any better)?

    I do like what Discobiscuit has been saying about corporations being out of control, however. But is Romney going to try to do something about it, or will he take the standard “just give them more and blame the poor” approach?
    Romney is a middle of the road conservative, and is a the best chance we have for the kind of compromise needed to move forward.

    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    I expect this has already been posted, but seems apt.
    And both types of people have been beneficial to the survival of the human race.

    I'm not certain what you are trying to say with the quote, but on the face of things it looks like you are using the quote to say conservatives are fear mongering retards while liberals and their greater level of grey matter are naturally better.

    That may not be what you're saying, but from where I'm sitting, I don't like the implication.

  2. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    I'm not certain what you are trying to say with the quote, but on the face of things it looks like you are using the quote to say conservatives are fear mongering retards while liberals and their greater level of grey matter are naturally better.
    Not so much "fear-mongering", those are your words, and what I might have thought prior to this research. Rather, it seems their fear is genuine, if irrational. I think it explains a lot. Particularly the machismo. Over-compensation, anyone?
    I don't like the implication.
    Can't say I blame you. Self-knowledge can be painful.

    To be absolutely clear, I'm not suggesting liberals are "better", just more highly evolved.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  3. #103

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    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    No so much "fear-mongering", those are your words, and what I might have thought prior to this research. Rather, it seems their fear is genuine, if irrational. I think it explains a lot. Particularly the machismo. Over-compensation, anyone?
    Can't say I blame you. Self-knowledge can be painful.

    To be absolutely clear, I'm not suggesting liberals are "better", just more highly evolved.
    You dont think that the research sounds like a lot of "go team" bias or at least is going to be used that way?

    A lot of liberal canon and articles of faith seem very irrational to me, the attachment that many heterosexual liberals who've possible never so much as met a homosexual have to homosexuality per se is just an obvious one, I tend to see things like what you mentioned as simply the liberal side of US tribal politics finally reacting to a long standing idea on the conservative side that American liberalism is a "mental illness" or "handicap".

    The more I read of the conservative-liberal game of tennis, particularly in the US, the more I think that modern political ideologies really were exhausted in the fifties. Although that said I really do think that a lot of so called consensus builders or transcenders of this particular game are phony, on the left a lot of liberals or democrats want to turn "respectable" and make money, on the right a lot of conservatives want to be "popular" or at least electable.

  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    You dont think that the research sounds like a lot of "go team" bias or at least is going to be used that way?
    I can't speak for the way it will be used. These are just raw facts and interesting hypothesies which seem to be born out by typical behaviours and beliefs. I find the neuroscience more interesting than the politics.

    A lot of liberal canon and articles of faith seem very irrational to me, the attachment that many heterosexual liberals who've possible never so much as met a homosexual have to homosexuality per se is just an obvious one
    You are an excellent data point.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  5. #105

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    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    I can't speak for the way it will be used. These are just raw facts and interesting hypothesies which seem to be born out by typical behaviours and beliefs. I find the neuroscience more interesting than the politics.


    You are an excellent data point.
    Well you've been using it, so, that's what I was talking about and I think you used it as I would have expected or as I pointed out in my post.

    I dont know that neuroscience is the metanarrative that a lot of people think it is or will be in the future, I've heard as many people suggesting its the key to analysis or therapy or makes a horses ass of those schools of thought as have linked it to politics, more probably.

    What do you mean I am an excellent data set? Do you believe I make your point for you? Did you understand either my point or me in order to reach that conclusion? To me its obvious that you dont, my point as about framing and reframing topics and the attendent responses, affect does lead intellect in most things and people are more rationalising than reasoning. The idea that people could be motivated by fear rather than hopes is not a revelation either. Although if the objects and causes are switched up this could apply to either liberals or conservatives.

    I see a greater convergence than ever in each ideology, particularly in the US, in which they each possess, and have a need of, a good object and bad other, its all linked to identity, self and affect regulation but I do find that, as with life in general, Eric Berne's ideas about scripts and games explain a lot of it.

    Neuroscience is like anything else, it could enlighten or provide insight, although its more likely to be enlisted in reinforcement and rationalisation. Why? Because people just want to feel good, they just want to hear what's going to allow them to feel good.

  6. #106
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    Whatever, I'm not going through the work to make a new thread out of this, but I'd seriously consider doing some research on the actual functions of the amygdala (numerous and varied) and the anterior cingulate cortex (also numerous and varied).

    If you have the ability to understand complexity (whether you're left or right) you'll likely find that the brain is a complex and dynamic systems with many checks and balances with other brain regions and that the suggestions posited in the original quote (below) are at best, guesses, at worst they are misleading and jump to conclusions based apparently in prejudice.

    Research suggests that conservatives are, on average, more susceptible to fear than those who identify themselves as liberals. Looking at MRIs of a large sample of young adults last year, researchers at University College London discovered that “greater conservatism was associated with increased volume of the right amygdala”. The amygdala is an ancient brain structure that's activated during states of fear and anxiety. (The researchers also found that “greater liberalism was associated with increased gray matter volume in the anterior cingulate cortex” – a region in the brain that is believed to help people manage complexity.)

    That has implications for our political world. In a recent interview, Chris Mooney, author of The Republican Brain, explained, “The amygdala plays the same role in every species that has an amygdala. It basically takes over to save your life. It does other things too, but in a situation of threat, you cease to process information rationally and you're moving automatically to protect yourself.”
    It should be noted further that the above interpretation is not what the researchers themselves suggested.

    Abstract:
    Substantial differences exist in the cognitive styles of liberals and conservatives on psychological measures [1]. Variability in political attitudes reflects genetic influences and their interaction with environmental factors [2,3]. Recent work has shown a correlation between liberalism and conflict-related activity measured by event-related potentials originating in the anterior cingulate cortex [4]. Here we show that this functional correlate of political attitudes has a counterpart in brain structure. In a large sample of young adults, we related self-reported political attitudes to gray matter volume using structural MRI. We found that greater liberalism was associated with increased gray matter volume in the anterior cingulate cortex, whereas greater conservatism was associated with increased volume of the right amygdala. These results were replicated in an independent sample of additional participants. Our findings extend previous observations that political attitudes reflect differences in self-regulatory conflict monitoring [4] and recognition of emotional faces [5] by showing that such attitudes are reflected in human brain structure. Although our data do not determine whether these regions play a causal role in the formation of political attitudes, they converge with previous work [4,6] to suggest a possible link between brain structure and psychological mechanisms that mediate political attitudes.
    And none of this says anything about who can make more accurate appraisals of a situation, who can form effective group structures, or who will be a better president.
    Don't know how much it'll bend til it breaks.

  7. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    Not so much "fear-mongering", those are your words, and what I might have thought prior to this research. Rather, it seems their fear is genuine, if irrational. I think it explains a lot. Particularly the machismo. Over-compensation, anyone?
    Can't say I blame you. Self-knowledge can be painful.

    To be absolutely clear, I'm not suggesting liberals are "better", just more highly evolved.
    This whole thing, in addition to what you posted earlier reeks of condescension and self superiority.

    Lets be honest, more highly evolved is just better by another name.

    I'm doing my best to restrain the more visceral parts of my character from verbally tearing you apart.

    That might be what you want. To look down your nose while I infract myself (which in this situation I think would be worth it).

    But I'm not going to give you the satisfaction. I'm just going to let you know that you are the flip side of all the things you hate in conservatives.

    Your ideology and personal opinion may tell you that you actually are better than all those people you hate, but you're not.

    You're just sad.

  8. #108
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    From The Economist:

    Fracking Great

    The promised gas revolution can do the environment more good than harm

    THE story of America’s shale-gas revolution offers hope in hard times. The ground was laid in the late 1990s, when a now-fabled Texan oilman, George Mitchell, developed an affordable way to extract natural gas locked up in shale rock and other geological formations. It involves blasting them with water, sand and chemicals—a technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”. America’s shale-gas industry has since drilled 20,000 wells, created hundreds of thousands of jobs, directly and indirectly, and provided lots of cheap gas. This is a huge advantage to American industry and a relief to those who fret about American energy security.

    The revolution should continue, according to a report published this week by the International Energy Agency (IEA). At current production rates, America has over a century’s supply of gas, half of it stored in shale and other “unconventional” formations. It should also spread, to China, Australia, Argentina and Europe. Global gas production could increase by 50% between 2010 and 2035, with unconventional sources supplying two-thirds of the growth (see article).

    A number of things could prevent this, however. Many of the factors behind America’s gas boom, including liberal regulation of pipelines (which encouraged wildcat exploration by small producers), a well-aimed subsidy and abundant drill-rigs, do not exist elsewhere. Its sheer rapidity is therefore unlikely to be matched. A greater threat stems from environmental protests, especially in some European countries, which could kill the shale-gas industry at birth. France and Bulgaria have banned fracking. Greens in America and Australia (see article) are also rallying against the industry.

    The anti-frackers have reasonable grounds for worry. Producing shale gas uses lots of energy and water, and can cause pollution in several ways. One concern is possible contamination of aquifers by methane, fracking fluids or the radioactive gunk they dislodge. This is not known to have happened; but it probably has, where well-shafts passing through aquifers have been poorly sealed.

    Another worry is that fracking fluids regurgitated up well-shafts might percolate into groundwater. A graver fear is that large amounts of methane, a powerful greenhouse-gas, could be emitted during the entire process of exploration and production. Some also fret that fracking might induce earthquakes—especially after it was linked to 50 tiny tremors in northern England last year.

    But the risks from shale gas can be managed. Properly concreted well-shafts do not leak; regurgitants can be collected and made safe; preventing gas venting and flaring would limit methane emissions to acceptable levels; and the risk of tremors, which commonly occur as a result of conventional oil-and-gas activities, can be contained by careful monitoring. The IEA estimates that such measures would add 7% to the cost of the average shale-gas well. That is a small price to pay for environmental protection and the health of a promising industry.

    For as well as posing environmental risks, a gas boom would bring an important environmental benefit. Burning gas emits half as much carbon dioxide as coal; so where gas substitutes for coal, emissions will fall. America’s emissions have fallen by 450m tonnes in the past five years, more than any other country’s. Ironically, given its far greater effort to tackle climate change, the European Union has seen its emissions rise, partly because of an increase in coal-fired power generation in response to Europe’s high gas price.

    Cleaner, but not clean enough

    By itself, switching to gas will not reduce emissions to anything like the levels required to avoid a high risk of serious climate change. This will take much crunchier policies to boost renewable-energy sources and other clean technologies—starting with a strong price on carbon emissions, through a market-based mechanism or, preferably, a carbon tax. Governments are understandably unwilling to take these steps in straitened times. Yet they should plan to do so; and in the coming years cheap gas could help free cash for more investment in low-carbon technologies. Otherwise the bonanza would be squandered.

  9. #109
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    Wow, I was reponding to the post and zip....it disappeared! You are 100% on target, neither candidate is addressing the core issues. Ron Paul attempted to address them but he was labeled a flake and shunted to the sidelines. The issues will not be addressed until the level of p[ain is sooo great we have no alternative. Witness Europe. I personally have invested 1/2 of my net worth shorting the markets.

  10. #110
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    Here is a great article from Foreign Policy that lays out the broad strokes for a bipartisan approach to stimulus:

    Stimulate this

    What, if anything, can jumpstart the American economy? Most recessions are followed by big rebounds in growth, but the Great Recession hasn't led to a Great Comeback. Three years after the recession ended, unemployment is still sitting above 8 percent. But there is a way out.

    It's not more monetary stimulus. The Fed has already taken extraordinary measures to juice the economy. Short-term interest rates near zero and "credit easing" have sent plenty of money sloshing through the markets. The problem now isn't the supply of financing for consumption and investment -- it's demand. As William Dudley, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, said in a recent speech, the rate of return in the private sector may simply be too low to encourage companies to spend and hire.

    The rate of return is likely to be much higher in the public sector, however. Academic research has repeatedly shown that investments in infrastructure, higher education, and basic scientific research pay back handsomely in long-term economic activity -- from 25 to 67 cents in today's money for every dollar spent. And like many investments, they pay off most when they've been neglected for a long time. These investments are the supply-side foundation for future growth; they increase the economy's productivity and its potential output of goods and services. They also have demand-side benefits in the short term, by putting people to work.

    But how can the United States spend more money when its deficits are already so enormous? Actually, borrowing more to invest in these areas will not necessarily lead to higher interest rates or greater fears about the nation's debt. Because this kind of spending helps the economy to grow year after year, it helps to ensure that the Treasury's creditors will get their money back.

    Moreover, it's a great time to borrow and spend. The 30-year Treasury bond is currently yielding about 2.5 percent, and the 10-year note is at historic lows of around 1.5 percent. If 10 cents of the 50-cent return on these investments comes back to the Treasury as tax revenue, these investments will practically pay for themselves. The logic is simple: It's just like taking out a big mortgage while investing in a rising stock market -- borrow at low rates, invest at high rates.

    Here are three ways that the U.S. federal government could invest in the economy's future:

    1. A New New Deal

    Infrastructure for transportation, energy distribution, and other critical functions of the U.S. economy has been neglected for decades. The World Economic Forum's most recent Global Competitiveness Report ranked the nation 24th in infrastructure, behind such economic titans as ... Barbados, Oman, and Portugal. The World Bank's Logistics Performance Index puts the United States in 7th place, behind major competitors Japan, Singapore, and Germany. To understand why, look no further than those tire-bursting potholes on the interstate, two-hour delays at overscheduled airports, 40-mph train journeys, and data-threatening summer brownouts.

    Regaining leadership in this area could invigorate commerce both internally and with the rest of the world. In the long term, better infrastructure lowers the cost of doing business and increases the capacity for industries to grow. And as in the 1930s, new infrastructure projects can still employ thousands of people.

    2. A New G.I. Bill

    Over the past decade, millions of Americans have lost jobs as a result of globalization. Because of competition from abroad, their skills no longer command a living wage. They still can and want to work but are ill prepared for the labor market. In other words, they are a huge untapped and underdeveloped resource.

    The United States faced this situation once before, in 1945. In the 12 years of the original G.I. Bill, about half of the nation's 16 million veterans used it for college or training, leading to substantial gains in educational attainment. Today, the United States has a much bigger higher education system that is ready to receive globalization's veterans, who are in just as much need of reintegration into the labor force. Call it the Globalization and Integration Bill.

    3. A New Sputnik Moment

    The launch of Sputnik by the Soviet Union in 1957 led the federal government to double funding for science as a share of the economy within only six years. There may be no satellite to prove American inferiority in science today, but there is a particle accelerator: the Large Hadron Collider in Europe, which might have been surpassed by the Superconducting Super Collider in Texas had Congress not canceled it in 1993.

    Putting such iconic projects aside, the American lag in science is visible in other important ways. Korea's National Research Foundation spends $55 per person, compared with $22 for the U.S. National Science Foundation, even after recent budget increases. The U.S. economy produces fewer patents per dollar of GDP than Korea, Japan, and China. The unfortunate fact that millions of Americans -- and even some top politicians -- reject scientific evidence for evolution and global warming doesn't help, either. Right now, federal funding for science as a share of the economy is back where it was in the 1950s. Another big boost would be a powerful signal of the economy's potential for future growth.

    President Obama named all three of these investment priorities in his 2011 State of the Union address, and even Republican leaders have admitted in private that this kind of government spending can create jobs. Yet in their actions, they haven't shown the level of ambition needed to push the U.S. economy onto a higher growth path. It's time to stop messing around and start thinking big. The time for a true supply-side stimulus is now.

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