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  1. #81
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    And you have still failed to provide evidence to dismiss the first argument.
    I did mention that all the top economies in the world are capitalist (Western and Northern Europe are far more capitalist than socialist). Even China's rise is due to privatization, not to their central planning prowess. Economies grow unless there is either political instability or massive government intervention.

    The reality is, Castro uses the embargo as an excuse as to why the economy has performed so poorly when it's not a valid excuse. He still has access to trade with virtually all of the rest of the world. The US isn't THAT important.

  2. #82
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    It didn't seem worth mentioning, but fine. Mussolini was a horrible fascist, but he also ran a very efficient a country. Every single train was on time.
    Usually, if there is anything good to say about fascists and authoritarians, it's that they clean up the country and set it straight. It's a really good starting over point for any revolutionaries that might want to do something.
    Of course, my awareness of this does not me that I endorse Fascist dictatorships.
    Fascists and authoritarians never "clean up the country and set it straight." They take a bad situation and make it worse. It is in their nature.



    This is so repetitive. Businessman employ forces of their own to acheive their ends. You seem to be severly underestimating how much corporations boss people around, including other corporations. Corporations often run in a way comperable to a government. I still return to my point that they are very similar.
    There is a difference between power and force. A corporation may, by virtue of its size or prominence in an industry, apply pressure to other companies, who have just as much right to do the same back. Do I seriously have to point out that this is different than a government, which may ban, jail, or even kill those who resist it? A government is an organization which holds monopoly power on the use of force in a society. That is what it does. I am not saying that there shouldn't be a government, but that is the basis of its legitimacy, and it must be constrained in order for a free society to exist and to flourish.


    You are right that in some sense they are two different kinds of people, so they can be presumed different in their behavior, but you have not actually justified your conclusion. You have not explained why or shown how they would be different in the particular way that you assert.
    What case do you have to prove that businessmen don't have to be selfish power-mongers, but politicians always do?
    A fairly obvious case. A businessperson must produce something that is bought/sold/processed/whatever. They must respond to what the market dictates is valuable, or they fail. A politician BY DEFINITION is seeking to enact laws that would force society at large to do or not to do something. That is the basis of legislation. There is no getting around it. When the government says, "We want higher mileage standards on automobiles" that means "Raise your mileage standards, or we'll take your business and possibly put you in jail." They enforce their rules at the barrel of a gun. That is why they are the government, and it is why politics attracts both the power-hungry and the honest-but-deluded humanitarian, who believes that things will be better if we "just get the right people in power."


    Tribal customs are, needless to say, a bit different from rules concerning societies of thousands, to hundreds of thousands of people. Became impossible for people to maintain the tribal system once populations became that large. Law in some simplistic sense has existed for as long as there have been civilizations. There is a collect of rules, they are outlined, you are expectd to follow them, and in case you don't, they are enforced. That's pretty much all it takes. These rules, as well as officials to define and enforce them, were established because populations and territories became too large for things to be operated on entirely interpersonal basis.
    You now had a situation where two people in society may never have even met. A goverment, even if a simple one, was necessary to hold it together.
    Government not an foreign artifice. Government is a part of human nature. It is the by-product of our social habits when our population exceeds tribal sizes. Tribe becomes Chiefdom, Chiefdom becomes nation. It is inevitable. It is intuitive.
    Show me where I said government wasn't a part of human nature, or that its rise wasn't intuitive, and you maybe would have a point here. I merely demonstrated that society existed without a government at one time. Plus, societies have existed in the last 1,000 years without any formal government. Iceland for centuries had the Althing, but it was general council made up of freeholders, and was a basic anarchist agrarian/fishing society. Pennsylvania in the 1680s and 1690s had no central government, and no rule at all besides William Penn's original ownership, which he sold off in tracts to other people, who paid no tribute or taxes to anyone, and who were free to do and to work and to worship as they pleased. They eventually grew and formed cities and governments and protection groups against Native Americans, but they did exist for a time.



    Well, Democracy is a system where everyone casts and opinion on policy or law, and the majority has priority. That's basically it. What is your alternative?
    My alternative would be to limit the government to the few functions for which it has legal standing to perform. You know, like how our American form of government is supposed to work? Majority rule equals tyranny for the minority. It's not a good system. In fact, it's not much better than government by one or ten.

    Suppose th government just protects your rights. What rights are they going to protect exactly? Who gets to decide what rights these are? Not the people who's rights are supposed to be protected? And who keeps these watchers from being abusive? Not the people who are being watched over?
    You are basically saying that the majority opinion can't be used to decide the rule of leadership. Well who will?
    This is actually approaching a decent argument. If you are not a believer in the Western tradition of natural rights and liberty, then you probably will not be persuaded by my arguments. In a constitutional republic, the government wouldn't have that much to do, and, in fact, there wouldn't be a "political class" of any note. Career politicians and major political parties are not beneficial to a free society. They have every inclination to function to keep themselves in power, at the expense of the rules they are supposed to follow. I could list what are considered rights in the Western/Age of Enlightenment tradition of thought, if you would like. I imagine you have an idea as to what they are.

    Oh, pshaw. The president and the legislators act on business interests. It's getting to a point where they need to worry more about their favorability to the corporate world than they do the voters. If you get on a businesses good side, then they can make sure you win an election.
    Corporations have their direct power plus whatever power they can get through puppeting politicians. That's what happens where you have a country where the government starts bending over backwards for monopolies.
    Wouldn't having a government who is influenced by and functioning for a business elite be a terrific argument for taking power AWAY from the government? Businesses don't lobby those without power. Read some Gabriel Kolko. The Progressive Era and The New Deal ushered in a new managerial class in both the federal government and large corporations, and they often worked together to fashion legislation to "rationalize" production in their industries. You seem to believe in a "Government protects us from evil corporations" fairy tale, when the reality is "Government protects Big Business from competition and losses."


    The point about people with money not bombing villlages is funny. Do you think that war and clandestine operations have never had anything to do with big businesses? Hello? War is business these days. I am absolutely, dead sure that businessmen influenced going to war with Iraq. And just about every time the Reagan administration funded some savagely brutal para-military organizaion in Latin-America, business interest was involved.
    The corporate world doesn't give a damn about "good" or "bad" rule. The only reason it ever pushed against Communists and Socialists is because they weren't useful to business.
    What I said was that Warren Buffett never bombed a village, and that is 100% true. But the fact of the matter is that governmental intrusion into other countries is based on a witches' brew of nationalism, popular will, access to markets, and geopolitical strategy. And I will go further. A corporation with property and legitimate interests in a country has a right to fight against a government or paramilitary group trying to subvert it. What it doesn't have a right to do is to use our tax money to do it. A lot of those paramilitary groups were no worse than their own governments in Latin America (the Sandinistas and the Contras were al savages, through and through); neither were legitimate, even when the Sandinistas won crooked elections).

    Now, you are right about this country's law, and even the obsession with Democracy to some extent, but if this country was not supposed to be run by common masses, it was certainly not supposed to be run by businesses. Rule of law was put in the hands of three branches of government. Government is intended to do the job.
    What I argue is that "the job" is a hell of a lot less than what the government does now. Like 90% or more is illegitimate. We pay tobacco farmers to grow tobacco, then we pay more for anti-smoking ads on TV. That is NOT what the government is there to do. And it's not there to invade countries full of poor, brown people and destroy them, either.


    Yes. You can simply return to that as a stand-alone argument, as if it were a priori truth. Like Descartes declaring that he thinks, therefore he is.
    It's not a priori if it's demonstrable within the parameters set up. You can say "I think that the government does a fine job and all its functions are legitimate; I disagree." It doesn't invalidate my statement based on the criteria I've delineated as proper governmental function. I know YOU disagree, but that is not something that can be proved one way or the other, because it is pure opinion. I can deride your reasoning and you can deride mine, but there is no satisfactory conclusion to make.


    No, that seems to be exactly what you were doing. You were telling me that putting faith in government was naive and out of touch, while in the mean time, you are putting still unvalidated faith in private organizations.
    Again, I did no such thing. You can keep saying it, but that doesn't make it so. Provide an example. I triple-dog-dare you.

    That's nice, but it didn't get you anywhere.
    It felt good because I won this argument, and it wasn't even close.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  3. #83
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    If you're gloating in self-asserted victory for no apparent reason, then you have presumably shut off all reception.
    I guess this ends now, and we go away both assuming the other was totally wrong.


    LAME!
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  4. #84
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    I did mention that all the top economies in the world are capitalist (Western and Northern Europe are far more capitalist than socialist).
    By what standard are you measuring how capitalistic or socialistic a country is? I would love to hear it. The fact that you would make such a ludicrous statement displays your lack of knowledge of how economic policy is utilized. Economic policy is situational, meaning that you would have to compare how each country institutes education, health care, military, police, welfare, etc. in order to determine which country had more policies that leaned toward socialism. And even a specific policy could have both capitalistic and socialistic principles inherent to it. You have proven that you certainly have an overly simplistic perspective of the world.

    Even China's rise is due to privatization, not to their central planning prowess. Economies grow unless there is either political instability or massive government intervention.
    Economies growth is a result of utilizing resources. Capitalism best prospers during war when new resources are acquired via brute force and subjugation. Why do you think the United States spends more on its military than every other country combined? Because it is essential to maintaining our economy. Or did you really think it was for the purpose of "national defense"?

    The reality is, Castro uses the embargo as an excuse as to why the economy has performed so poorly when it's not a valid excuse. He still has access to trade with virtually all of the rest of the world. The US isn't THAT important.
    Go ahead and make the same claim without any evidence to support your assertion. :rolli: It could very well be because of the embargo and because it is a totalitarian regime, but its your outright denial to even consider that possiblity, without any evidence to support your conviction, that shows you are ideologically driven, not rationally driven.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  5. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    It felt good because I won this argument, and it wasn't even close.


    Sorry, but you set yourself up for that one.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  6. #86
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post


    Sorry, but you set yourself up for that one.
    Set myself up for what? I WON the argument. We had a debate, and I bested Magic. It was pretty clear-cut, too. He/she argued points I never made, made baseless assertions, and generally did a poor job of laying out his or her views. Bush was wrong. I wasn't.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  7. #87
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    If you're gloating in self-asserted victory for no apparent reason, then you have presumably shut off all reception.
    I guess this ends now, and we go away both assuming the other was totally wrong.


    LAME!
    The "reason" is readily apparent. You lost a debate to someone who was better prepared and who actually argued his points, and contradicted ones made by his opponent, not imaginary ones that no one made. In high school forensics, this would have been a bloodletting. You're obviously not interested in debating what I actually say, so why not end it now? I don't have to convince you that my viewpoint is correct to have made a better showing. Noam Chomsky was more wrong than right when he debated William F. Buckley, but he held his own, if not won (more than Gore Vidal could manage in the more famous debate). Call it "lame" all you want. Forget the substance of the arguments; you got outclassed. Kiddo makes twice the sense in his posts that you do; at least he makes coherent arguments. You are free to spout any further thoughts on the matter. Be my guest.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  8. #88
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Set myself up for what? I was WON the argument. We had a debate, and I bested Magic. It was pretty clear-cut, too. He/she argued points I never made, made baseless assertions, and generally did a poor job of laying out his or her views. Bush was wrong. I wasn't.
    It seems to me like you both made baseless assertions and generally did a poor job of outlying your views. You couldn't even make a logical case for one of the assertions I randomly pulled out and challenged you on. I got a good laugh all around, but the difference is you pulled the ol' "The war is over because I said so" fallacy out of your bag, so you get the "Mission Accomplished" sticker.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  9. #89
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    It seems to me like you both made baseless assertions and generally did a poor job of outlying your views. You couldn't even make a logical case for one of the assertions I randomly pulled out and challenged you on. I got a good laugh all around, but the difference is you pulled the ol' "The war is over because I said so" fallacy out of your bag, so you get the "Mission Accomplished" sticker.
    Now you just look like a moron. I did everything one is supposed to do in a debate. Outlined my ideas, poked holes in my opponent's, I was consistent, I cited examples. I DID in fact make a logical case as to why Cuba's economy is so poor relative to other countries who were similar in real GDP in the 1950s. You refused to apply logic to the evidence that is widely available, because you already made your mind up that the facts pointed to something else that is not only implausible, but near-psychotic. Put any Bush pic up you want. You look like a fool for doing it. You're entertaining no one but yourself.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Now you just look like a moron. I did everything one is supposed to do in a debate. Outlined my ideas, poked holes in my opponent's, I was consistent, I cited examples. I DID in fact make a logical case as to why Cuba's economy is so poor relative to other countries who were similar in real GDP in the 1950s.
    And I pointed out why it is illogical to make the conclusion you made with the information you presented.

    You refused to apply logic to the evidence that is widely available, because you already made your mind up that the facts pointed to something else that is not only implausible, but near-psychotic. Put any Bush pic up you want. You look like a fool for doing it. You're entertaining no one but yourself.
    Tsk, Tsk. Now you are projecting. Here is your purple giraffe.

    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

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