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Blame the Riots in Egypt on Twitter?
Posted: 01 February 2011 06:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
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Rocinante - 01 February 2011 05:11 PM

Since I do not support direct democracy, that doesn’t appeal to me.  The majority of voters also don’t think gays or lesbians should be able to marry - just as Obama doesn’t think they should be free to marry.  Just because a majority want something, doesn’t make it right.

What makes it right? Anything other then a constitutional argument of equality? A group of representatives of each state signed-off agreement on the constitution.

Sure ideally we’d have a group of benevolent elite leaders to govern the rest. I don’t think our politicians fit that bill. I don’t know how you get that group in place. Our leadership comes by way of social skills. An obvious problem with democracy. There is no other real requirements. I think, 35+, born in the US, no felonies. No psychological testing. No test of critical thinking skills. Don’t even have to score high on a SAT test.

Is Obama a smart guy? You say no, someone else says yes, how do you know? There is no requirement that the President be smart anyway.

I went looking for the hell of it, I guess Obama’s SAT score and GPA are secret. Politicians are elected because of their social skills. That is an obvious crap shoot.

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Posted: 01 February 2011 07:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
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Thanks Rocinante for explaining your own position and view of the role of government in general and Obama (and Bush) in particular. I get the impression that you are a Libertarian at heart.

IMO, most people here hold to the values of personal liberty, lowest possible taxation, and least government interference.

However, IMO one cannot make a claim that “those are the values that made out country great”. Actually I believe that the reverse is true.

The rightful native owners of the US were the Native Americans. In conquering and taking their lands with a long trail of broken treaties and a total disregard of the dignity and freedoms of the Indians, we certainly cannot claim now (after the fact) that we (whites) followed our own proud claim of “personal liberty”, while from the very day we landed we denied those rights to the indians, blacks, and oriental slaves later.

The greatest wealth was acquired on the backs of slaves and indentured labor. 

The greatest threat to the US economy today is the “liberty” of corporations to find slaves (.50/hr) in underdeveloped countries, at cost (and disregard) of fellow Americans.

IMO, we should fear plutocracy (Capitalism) much more than our democratic (for the people) form of Government, which at its best tries to address and balance the dignity and personal freedom of all US citizens against the abuses by the rich and powerful.  We need only look at “Love Canal” (then), the oil spill in Gulf of Mexico, and the outsourcing of jobs (now) to see the results of uncontrolled (unregulated) capitalism.

IMO, the current economic disaster was not caused by excesses of government, but by the most wealthy corporations.

In a country as wealthy in natural resources as the US and yet having an ever increasing disparity between the rich and poor, to pay lipservice to personal freedoms sounds hollow. Personal freedom means nothing when your local supermatket sells only goods “made in China” and you have no job or money to spend on the most basic of personal needs.

You might argue that historically the “free market” will correct itself and eventually (perhaps decades) it does in most cases (unless we have monopolies), but at what cost of human suffering? Should we go back to the good old days of slavery here? It does offer job security, but not a lot of personal freedom.
The point I am trying to make is that a country which invites the “poor huddled masses”, then sends existing jobs to the countries where those masses actually fled from, would again be engaged in “speaking with forked tongue”.

A civilization is not founded on wealth by a few, it is founded on the premise that all persons have an intrinsic value and government has a responsibility of protecting the least among us from the unrestrained excesses of others.

[ Edited: 01 February 2011 08:22 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 01 February 2011 10:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
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Write4U - 01 February 2011 07:53 PM

The rightful native owners of the US were the Native Americans. In conquering and taking their lands with a long trail of broken treaties and a total disregard of the dignity and freedoms of the Indians, we certainly cannot claim now (after the fact) that we (whites) followed our own proud claim of “personal liberty”, while from the very day we landed we denied those rights to the indians, blacks, and oriental slaves later.

What do you mean “we”?  I stole no land.  I held no slaves. 

Do you blame the Germans of today for the Holocaust or the Japanese of today for Pearl Harbor or the Nanking Massacre?  I don’t.  To do so is the exact same as your analogy.   

How far back will you go?  What if your great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great Grandfather Grog hit my great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great Grandfather Ugg on the head with a club and stole his Woolly Mammoth meal and took over Grandpa Ugg’s cave? grin  Should you be blamed?  Should I get restitution from you?  Of course not.   

The idea that whites of today should be punished for crimes they never committed or pay restitution to others of today who were never slaves is just as much a form of bigotry as the notion that led to slavery in the first place.

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Posted: 01 February 2011 11:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
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Rocinante - 01 February 2011 10:57 PM

What do you mean “we”?  I stole no land.  I held no slaves. 

Do you blame the Germans of today for the Holocaust or the Japanese of today for Pearl Harbor or the Nanking Massacre?  I don’t.  To do so is the exact same as your analogy.   

How far back will you go?  What if your great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great Grandfather Grog hit my great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great Grandfather Ugg on the head with a club and stole his Woolly Mammoth meal and took over Grandpa Ugg’s cave? grin  Should you be blamed?  Should I get restitution from you?  Of course not.   

The idea that whites of today should be punished for crimes they never committed or pay restitution to others of today who were never slaves is just as much a form of bigotry as the notion that led to slavery in the first place.

The whites of today are complicit in the continued marginalisation and impoverishment of First Nations people. I know what comes to mind is casinos, but that represents a very few First Nations bands. The majority live in horrible conditions, on bad land. The reserve system means that they don’t own the land, it is leased in perpetuity, which means they cannot borrow money on it towards housing or infastructure. They live in third world conditions. And yes, as long as we, all of us in North America, do not push for reform, we are complicit.

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Posted: 02 February 2011 12:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
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Rocinante - 01 February 2011 10:57 PM
Write4U - 01 February 2011 07:53 PM

The rightful native owners of the US were the Native Americans. In conquering and taking their lands with a long trail of broken treaties and a total disregard of the dignity and freedoms of the Indians, we certainly cannot claim now (after the fact) that we (whites) followed our own proud claim of “personal liberty”, while from the very day we landed we denied those rights to the indians, blacks, and oriental slaves later.

What do you mean “we”?  I stole no land.  I held no slaves. 

Do you blame the Germans of today for the Holocaust or the Japanese of today for Pearl Harbor or the Nanking Massacre?  I don’t.  To do so is the exact same as your analogy.   

How far back will you go?  What if your great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great Grandfather Grog hit my great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great Grandfather Ugg on the head with a club and stole his Woolly Mammoth meal and took over Grandpa Ugg’s cave? grin  Should you be blamed?  Should I get restitution from you?  Of course not.   

The idea that whites of today should be punished for crimes they never committed or pay restitution to others of today who were never slaves is just as much a form of bigotry as the notion that led to slavery in the first place.

That was a mind bender.  Did I suggest restitution?

I was making a philosophical point in context of the history of small (or non-existent) government , lower taxes, personal freedoms in the early days. To hold up those good “ole” days of liberty and freedom as a desirable foundation on which a nation is build, IMO is false.

The concept of Equality under Law is what made this country great. This does not protect the wealthy from exploitation by the poor, it protects the poor and powerless from exploitation by the wealthy and powerful.

And yes, of course a small efficient government, low taxation, and freedom within certain limits established by general consensus of the representatives of the people is a good thing. And a certain amount of socialism is unavoidable, there are common societal needs which cannot be dismissed with an argument about too much taxation.

I ask you, do you agree with the supreme court ruling that corporations have same rights as persons?
The rights of a corporation are “distinct from” those of persons.

That donating unlimited sums of money to a campaign is an expression of free speech?
Money is a federal voucher created for purpose of “means of exchange” or “quid pro quo”, effectively making the recipient a “representative” lobbyist for the donor.

That inevitably leads to Plutocracy and there go your freedoms.

If Corporations have such great confidence in their “chosen” candidates, let them spend all that money in funding public debates among the candidates for congress and senate and the presidency. That would create a level playing field where all credible candidates and sides can be heard clearly by the citizenry, without being bombarded by a 50 million dollars advertising campaign, drowning out all other voices. As such a sponsorship would be “in the public interest”, it would be tax deductible. There could even be an accommodation for recognition and expressed appreciation for that sponsoring company. That kind of advertising might even be called patriotic.

To me such an effort to further ‘freedom of speech’ and ‘freedom in general’ would go a long way to foster a just and fair Democratic society and civilization.

[ Edited: 02 February 2011 01:01 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 11 February 2011 06:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
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Well rock and roll, the struggle for freedom seems to have achieved a victory.

Good Luck Egypt!

‘Egypt is Free’ chants Tahrir after Mubarak Quits
The Associated Press 02/11/11 9:46 AM

Egyptians celebrate after President Hosni Mubarak resigned and handed power to the military in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, Feb. 11, 2011. Egypt exploded with joy, tears, and relief after pro-democracy protesters brought down President Hosni Mubarak with a momentous march on his palaces and state TV. Mubarak, who until the end seemed unable to grasp the depth of resentment over his three decades of authoritarian rule, finally resigned Friday and handed power to the military.

Cries of “Egypt is free” rang out and fireworks lit up the sky as hundreds of thousands danced, wept and prayed in joyful pandemonium Friday after 18 days of peaceful pro-democracy protests forced President Hosni Mubarak to surrender power to the military, ending three decades of authoritarian rule.

Ecstatic protesters in Cairo’s Tahrir, or Liberation, Square hoisted soldiers onto their shoulders and families posed for pictures in front of tanks in streets flooded with people streaming out to celebrate.

http://www.sfexaminer.com/news/2011/02/mubarak-resigns-hands-power-military

[reconstructed]

[ Edited: 19 March 2011 07:18 PM by citizenschallenge.pm ]
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Posted: 19 March 2011 07:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 11 February 2011 06:09 PM

Well rock and roll, the struggle for freedom seems to have achieved a victory.

Good Luck Egypt!

3/19/11
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110319/ap_on_re_mi_ea/ml_egypt
By MAGGIE MICHAEL and HAMZA HENDAWI, Associated Press

CAIRO – Millions of Egyptians voted freely on Saturday for the first time in more than half a century, joyfully waiting for hours to cast their ballots on a package of constitutional changes eliminating much-hated restrictions on political rights and civil liberties.

Young people traded mobile-phone pictures of ink-stained fingers that showed they voted. Others called relatives to boast of casting the first vote of their lives.

Way to go!  Elections within five weeks.  surprised 
Is that what Phi was talking about  cheese

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