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Author Topic: AmeriPol thread  (Read 1528403 times)

McTraveller

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15480 on: December 10, 2017, 03:34:31 pm »

For me I can't resolve these inconsistencies in beliefs and I have no idea how some of these people sleep at night....but then again I'm not religious.
What's probably the most sad thing about this is that all Christians get painted with a terrible brush because of that type of inconsistency.  And it's hard to separate yourself with cries of "No true Scotsman fallacy" - that is you can't say "well they aren't really Christians because x y z" without just digging a deeper hole.  No amount of apologetics is likely to deal with it either.  It's kind of like any kind of thing - the hardest corruption (of ideas, of physical things, whatever) with which to deal is corruption from within.  So when you have different groups within Christianity (or any religion for that matter) displaying vastly different worldviews, it's no wonder that people question the veracity of any aspect of the belief.

I think this even applies to politics - entire parties get associated with the most "media-worthy" members of the party, even if that type of behavior is in such a minority of the overall ideology.

Overall it's just sad... but at the end of the day I do have hope that it will all get better one day, even if I (or even my children, or grandchildren) don't happen to be around to see it.  And I take steps personally to try and affect things in my local sphere as I can... but I know that the "public" spotlight is not the place for me, so I just deal with the bit of sadness I get from watching what's happening.
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redwallzyl

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15481 on: December 10, 2017, 03:50:36 pm »

For me I can't resolve these inconsistencies in beliefs and I have no idea how some of these people sleep at night....but then again I'm not religious.
What's probably the most sad thing about this is that all Christians get painted with a terrible brush because of that type of inconsistency.  And it's hard to separate yourself with cries of "No true Scotsman fallacy" - that is you can't say "well they aren't really Christians because x y z" without just digging a deeper hole.  No amount of apologetics is likely to deal with it either.  It's kind of like any kind of thing - the hardest corruption (of ideas, of physical things, whatever) with which to deal is corruption from within.  So when you have different groups within Christianity (or any religion for that matter) displaying vastly different worldviews, it's no wonder that people question the veracity of any aspect of the belief.

I think this even applies to politics - entire parties get associated with the most "media-worthy" members of the party, even if that type of behavior is in such a minority of the overall ideology.

Overall it's just sad... but at the end of the day I do have hope that it will all get better one day, even if I (or even my children, or grandchildren) don't happen to be around to see it.  And I take steps personally to try and affect things in my local sphere as I can... but I know that the "public" spotlight is not the place for me, so I just deal with the bit of sadness I get from watching what's happening.
Exactly, you see it with everything. likely at least partially result of our tendency to want to see simple dichotomies, a good and an evil. Its toxic and I hate it but its impossible to escape. Of course don't let that distract you from things that do not in fact have a good side. Its often the argument of the terrible that they are merely being mischaracterized when in fact it is the worst that are in control trying to deflect criticism.
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Baffler

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15482 on: December 10, 2017, 05:19:51 pm »

I have to answer this.

When you stand for "morals" and "principles" as handed down by the Almighty and are immutable rules of human behavior.....

A "partial" defeat doesn't really make those morals or any righteousness flowing from them legitimate. "We're approving of promiscuous sexual behavior with minors by some of the most powerful people in the country.....but at least the gays still can't get married!"

That's horseshit. Real life isn't some 40k dystopia (yet), and there's no reason we should have to tolerate this set of necessary evils. Anyone who claims to be part of a moral majority has to stand by their morals. They are not something you can sacrifice in the name of victory and then still claim the moral high ground, because you deliberately sacrificed it in the name earthy, fleshy victory. Moral credibility is pretty much shot.

And here's what pisses me off the worst: conservative republicans play the "all or nothing" game with America's values. They won't compromise on issues relating to homosexuals because "we can't violate our beliefs" and in the next sentence say "I could live with a pedophile because it keeps my beliefs intact." As though being a sexual predator is a fucking virtue in the New Testament.

There's no integrity in treating your morals like that. I'd fucking LOVE to see what would have happened if instead of preying on teenage girls, Moore was trying to pick up teenage boys. REAAALLLLLY put the squeeze on the conservative's flexible and adaptive morality, and ultimately expose it for what it really is: self-serving bullshit. That can be discarded or re-framed as needed to fit the situation. Just as God intended it when he put this shit on stone tablets.

It's like when Mike Huckabee, Mr. "Christian values" was found to be cheating on his wife, and CR straight up said "it doesn't matter to his suitability to office" even though he was running on a morality platform. Like, oh, suddenly the sanctity of marriage and god's divine union ISN'T so important. Like character isn't important. Oh, FORGIVENESS is what we should practice here, everyone fucks up, ya know?

For me I can't resolve these inconsistencies in beliefs and I have no idea how some of these people sleep at night....but then again I'm not religious.

The answer is in your own post. Frankly I have a hard time believing that you can simultaneously complain that religious people are unwilling to compromise their values, but also say that they shouldn't compromise because to do so is hypocrisy and proof of their low moral character. What is the right move here? Violent uprising? Purity spiraling into irrelevance? Or am I framing this wrong and the right answer is to give up and become whatever you identify yourself as? It seems like you've just started with the presumption that they (or really, we) are of low moral character and filled in the reasoning behind it as needed. As to Roy Moore specifically, see from here on because that's not really an argument worth restarting:

-snip-
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 05:23:21 pm by Baffler »
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Even if you found a suitable opening, I doubt it would prove all too satisfying. And it might leave some nasty wounds, depending on the moral high ground's geology.
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nenjin

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15483 on: December 10, 2017, 05:42:51 pm »

Quote
Frankly I have a hard time believing that you can simultaneously complain that religious people are unwilling to compromise their values, but also say that they shouldn't compromise because to do so is hypocrisy and proof of their low moral character.

If they were going to not compromise their values, and stick to them, that'd be "the correct" thing IMO. Don't compromise on rights for homosexuals, fine. But also don't compromise on standing for people who are demonstrably dishonest, and sometimes criminal. If they've done wrong things there are consequences for those things under your own moral code. But instead there's indifference because "well our side needs to win." It's called integrity, or rather the lack of it.

I'm 100% for stringing up any Democrat who has acted inappropriately, now or in the past. The Clintons, Frankin, whatever. (Notice he did the right thing and stepped down voluntarily? That's how you take responsibility for your behavior.) But the same goes for Republicans. There need to be consequences for any moral system to have meaning, and frankly the group in this country that talks the most about morality the loudest seems to shrug off the consequences any time they don't live up to the standards they say they hold, because their own base won't hold them accountable. Frankin quit because his colleagues wanted him gone over it and his base would hold him accountable and not re-elect him anyways. He fucked up, he got caught, he ate shit. That's how the system is supposed to work.

And yet the Right invents all sorts of reasons why this doesn't apply to their people, or shouldn't, from divine grace to forgiveness to some apocalyptic struggle for control of values in this country that they will "forgive" a whole hell of a lot to win. People talk about respecting the other side but damn, it's times like this that make it really hard to do so, when we can't even agree on an equal metric of justice because people think the culture war is so much more important. I've always advocated for holding our politicians to the highest possible standard of behavior, and it drives me insane when people treat them as if they operate on some different realm of existence where the basic rules of honesty and integrity can't or shouldn't apply to them. Allegations of preying on teenagers or groping people can and do ruin "normal" people's lives.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 05:55:00 pm by nenjin »
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Baffler

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15484 on: December 10, 2017, 06:11:22 pm »

That would be ideal, but I'm not sure where you're getting this idea that Republican voters don't hold their reps accountable. How many politicians have resigned or 'chosen not to seek re-election' because of some kind of sexual misconduct, legal or otherwise? How many established politicians with decades of service have we lost to 'dark horse primary challenges' in the last few years because of their (at least perceived) corruption and inadequacy?

It's also interesting that you take Al Franken as an example for Republicans to follow, while conveniently ignoring that Republican congressmen Trent Franks resigned for a similar reason, on the same day, and unlike Al Franken who has attacked his accusers even in the face of undeniable evidence, could likely have gone entirely unnoticed had he not admitted what he'd done of his own volition.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 06:13:16 pm by Baffler »
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Even if you found a suitable opening, I doubt it would prove all too satisfying. And it might leave some nasty wounds, depending on the moral high ground's geology.
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SalmonGod

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15485 on: December 10, 2017, 06:20:46 pm »

For me I can't resolve these inconsistencies in beliefs and I have no idea how some of these people sleep at night....but then again I'm not religious.
What's probably the most sad thing about this is that all Christians get painted with a terrible brush because of that type of inconsistency.

I'd say that anybody who paints all of Christianity with the perceptions built specifically by Republicans is sort of a terrible person, also.

For what it's worth, I'm highly critical of Christianity, and cautious around Christian people until I know them better.  But I don't assume that Republican political behavior represents all Christians.  I don't think I'm alone in that.

The answer is in your own post. Frankly I have a hard time believing that you can simultaneously complain that religious people are unwilling to compromise their values, but also say that they shouldn't compromise because to do so is hypocrisy and proof of their low moral character. What is the right move here? Violent uprising? Purity spiraling into irrelevance? Or am I framing this wrong and the right answer is to give up and become whatever you identify yourself as? It seems like you've just started with the presumption that they (or really, we) are of low moral character and filled in the reasoning behind it as needed. As to Roy Moore specifically, see from here on because that's not really an argument worth restarting:

But the issue here is that Republicans specifically only seem to care about being uncompromising on their Christian values when it supports their ability to wage war on groups they don't like (which is almost everyone who isn't them).  That's what nenjin is getting at, and why non-Republicans find their values rhetoric to be so much bullshit. 

He said nothing about how they should be both compromising and uncompromising.  It's more about consistency.  If they were one or the other on a consistent basis, it wouldn't look so bad.  But if they pick which one they want to be based on how well it serves their agenda of persecuting others, it speaks very poorly of their integrity, and gives the impression that their belief system is just a convenient excuse to pursue hatred.
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smjjames

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15486 on: December 10, 2017, 07:30:32 pm »

PSA reminder (as if we need one, but you'll get a laugh out of this one) on the kind of crazy that Moore would be inflicting on the GOP. He said back in 2011 that we should get rid of the amendments after the 10th as according to him, it'd fix lots of problems.

So, among those he'd want to get rid of are the 13th amendment which abolished slavery or things that fixed problems that actually happened like the 12th. I know Moore and Trump supporters are just gonna say "That was in the past, the past doesn't matter", but once he becomes Senator (and I secretly hope the expelling fails so that the GOP reaps what they've sown), the GOP is going to own those comments, like that guys 'legitimate rape' comments.

Handy reference to the 27 amendments for our international friends.
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nenjin

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15487 on: December 10, 2017, 09:38:53 pm »

I didn’t hear or read about Trent Franks, but I’m glad he stepped down.

And while I’m not trying to tar all Christians with the same brush, it often doesn’t seem like they’re out there opposing the groups that hijack their religion’s reputation either. People are quick to say “hey don’t lump all Christians in with this bad behavior” and yet stay neutral when it comes time to actually stand up and fight against what Christianity doesn’t stand for.
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smjjames

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15488 on: December 10, 2017, 10:15:54 pm »

And while I’m not trying to tar all Christians with the same brush, it often doesn’t seem like they’re out there opposing the groups that hijack their religion’s reputation either. People are quick to say “hey don’t lump all Christians in with this bad behavior” and yet stay neutral when it comes time to actually stand up and fight against what Christianity doesn’t stand for.

I guess part of it is that only one group (the Catholics) really has any sort of major centralized leadership that excommunicates or whatever the heretics and fight against what Christianity doesn't stand for. Plus Christianity isn't monolithic. Yes Catholics make up a huge chunk, but theres at least 20 groups/denominations, and that's not counting numerous branch offs, subdivisions, regional variations, and what-have-you. Point is that as much as people talk about Christianity as a unified monolithic whole, it really isn't.

I realize the whole religion tangent is tangled with AmeriPol atm due to Trump, Moore, and evangelicals, but probably should shift it to the religion thread, unless it's still in relation to American politics.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 10:24:10 pm by smjjames »
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sluissa

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15489 on: December 10, 2017, 10:47:45 pm »

And while I’m not trying to tar all Christians with the same brush, it often doesn’t seem like they’re out there opposing the groups that hijack their religion’s reputation either. People are quick to say “hey don’t lump all Christians in with this bad behavior” and yet stay neutral when it comes time to actually stand up and fight against what Christianity doesn’t stand for.

I guess part of it is that only one group (the Catholics) really has any sort of major centralized leadership that excommunicates or whatever the heretics and fight against what Christianity doesn't stand for. Plus Christianity isn't monolithic. Yes Catholics make up a huge chunk, but theres at least 20 groups/denominations, and that's not counting numerous branch offs, subdivisions, regional variations, and what-have-you. Point is that as much as people talk about Christianity as a unified monolithic whole, it really isn't.

I realize the whole religion tangent is tangled with AmeriPol atm due to Trump, Moore, and evangelicals, but probably should shift it to the religion thread, unless it's still in relation to American politics.

Let's just be honest. Neither side is really willing to demonize most of their neighbors as long as they're all still voting the same way. It really has to come down to something irredeemable with incontrovertible proof to get any significant number to turn on one of their own. Even then it's pretty reluctant. Trump's famous for saying he could kill someone on 5th avenue and still be loved but that's about what it would take to turn most of his supporters. Filmed evidence of him doing such a thing. Even then we're coming up on an age where even pictures and video are going to be easily fakeable with reasonable doubt.
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smjjames

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15490 on: December 10, 2017, 10:55:17 pm »

Photo manipulation has been around since photography became a thing, same with videos. It's not even new at all, it's just getting to a point where the sophistication is scary.
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sluissa

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15491 on: December 10, 2017, 11:41:57 pm »

It's definitely been a thing for a long time, and if anyone wanted to do it badly enough they could by spending enough time, resources and manpower on it. But now we're at the point where machines can do it to a reasonable degree. Once it's automated it becomes trivial and can be done by almost anyone for relatively little cost.

It's the old printing press thing. Yes, books existed before it. But they were expensive and rare and typically only available to the rich and powerful(or those with connections to such) because they were hard to replicate. After the press well... paperbacks now are almost disposable in their pricing. We're at the age where the printing press for fake photographic evidence is basically upon is, and video is just an extrapolation of that. Multiple photographs stitched together.
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Reelya

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15492 on: December 11, 2017, 01:49:36 am »

It's also not just the sophistication of the photo editing: adversarial neural networks have been a big game-changer. You have one NN trained to spot fakes, while another NN is trained to make fakes that cannot be spotted by the other neural network. Those then co-evolve to create fakes which are really hard to detect.

e.g. you could in fact do a sloppy botch-up photoshop then train this type of adversarial neural network to "touch up" your hackjob to remove the signs it's been tampered with. So it's not just improvements in the tools which mean expert "photo-hackers" with hollywood-style master skills can make this shit. Basic machine learning tools could mean the most dumbass Trump supporters could do it almost as good as skilled photoshoppers now, and with cleverly trained AIs touching up the resultant photos there wouldn't be any of the telltale signs of tampering left. (e.g. you'd need to use higher-level "judgement" to decide what's fake and what's real. God help America).
« Last Edit: December 11, 2017, 01:54:53 am by Reelya »
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Frumple

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15493 on: December 11, 2017, 07:42:07 am »

Point is that as much as people talk about Christianity as a unified monolithic whole, it really isn't.
Except it kinda' is so far as politicized interaction with the american political system goes. The influence of christians stumping as christians is pretty heavily conservative, and by extension church goers are significantly R voting even if not registered R. There's a crap ton of different congregations but if you poke them for political views there's significantly less variation, and at least so far as I've noticed, while left leaning christians and related religious groups very much are there (the demographics of the US makes thinking otherwise an exercise in farce), they're not nearly as strident about it, nor as supported by regional inter-church organizations.

Basically, the parts that aren't entirely fractured -- and by extension leveraging significantly less electoral weight -- in the US are pretty damn monolithic in how they vote, regardless of whatever else they might be doing. And even with the mess that is protestant religion, most areas in the country have a handful of bridging groups putting a fair bit of (pretty damn effective) effort into getting otherwise disparate denominational splinters into an appropriately duckish row.

To an extent, it's not that surprising, really. The GOP has been pretty damn consistent in defending the means for church corruption and legal privilege to the hilt, so the power (and resource) consolidation and organizations it enables leads to damnedly influential religious groups pushing individual churches towards supporting the party even when there should be fucked up major theological et al disagreement with basically goddamn everything the republican party gets up to these days.
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RedKing

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Re: AmeriPol: Senate passes tax 'reform', now attempting to cross streams with House
« Reply #15494 on: December 11, 2017, 08:49:47 am »

Or to sum it up, Christianity is not politically monolithic, but Political Christianity overwhelmingly is.
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