The Addictive Nature Of Election Chaos

I find myself compulsively watching the election countdown despite the stick and carrot coverage by the media.The rabid emotionalism of the Trump campaign with its accompanying threat of violence, is a constant which tonight resulted in the beating of a protester,the hustling off the stage of the trumpeting Troll,and an attack on a CNN photographer whose camera was taken away.No DS,free speech,a belief in individual liberty and free( but regulated) markets does not define the GOP but rather capitalistic democracy and the Democratic party with all its warts seems better at it.
The Republicans ” coming home” to the Trumpeter despite previously abandoning him on ethical grounds make clear the opportunistic and unethical nature of the political process.Where is the moral/ethical firewall located in a world dominated by the love of money and power? The promise that”we won’t be stopped”coupled with “lock her up” and ” execute her” can only create equally violent responses.
Despite Bill Maher’s fears and the marshaling of muck inside and outside government,I believe that Trump will lose but his pugnacity and vote of no confidence in our process with an unusual lack of grace is making our Vladimir(Putin) happy.

Categories:

23 Comments

  1. Thank you Gregory for continuing the effort.

    I’ve clearly hit a sensitive nerve. That is a clue as to where attention is needed. It is true that my interpretation of the issue could be incorrect, that Gregory’s is incorrect, that we are both incorrect. It is also true that unaddressed our views tend to remain what they are. Addressed, we have a chance at the thing I call growth – adjustment, enlightenment. Feelings often stand in the way of enlightenment and I have found that inappropriate feelings tend to be our worst enemy when it comes to keeping our “eyes on the “real” road ahead.
    What I presented was what I would call the best hypothesis that explains some apparent contradictions in Gregory’s earlier statements. I welcome “reasoned” correction. It is a wonder that anyone would not want to be navigating with anything less than the best understandings, but the addictive nature of some powerful feelings seems to be a prevalent, reasonable explanation.
    Notice that Gregory continues to avoid providing for our enlightenment a specific answer to the following question:
    When “doing good for others”, is your sense of goodness altered in any way when you use resources that you acquired and when you forcefully use the resources that others have acquired.”

    1. I guess the key to your angst is your concept of the “forceful” use of resources you’ve acquired.I haven’t personally approved any missiles or drones but I do pay my taxes and assume that some of the money will go to uses that I disagree with.Unlike the President elect. I depend on imperfect governance and the swinging pendulum most of whose excursions are beyond my life span.I recommend that you re- examine ” forceful” with your dispassionate lens.

      1. Thank you Daedal2207, for providing a very reasonable observation. We agree in our system of government to comply with our elected officials’ decisions as to what sources will be tapped as regards funding its projects. The word “forced” is not accurate in such an agreed upon arrangement. I was hoping that the direction of argument would extend to the following question: At what point of taxation will the taxpayer feel that he is being “forced” to provide more than his fair share and at what point does that “contributor to GNP” diminish productivity or stop producing entirely? Given that many producers are voting with their feet to go elsewhere I would say that “forced” is an operative dynamic and thus the question remains important as to the degree one is justified in “feeling good” about “using other people’s resources to serve his concept of “good” causes”.

    2. @Don Spencer Re: November 10, 2016 at 6:37 pm comments

      Don’s response: “Notice that Gregory continues to avoid providing for our enlightenment a specific answer to the following question:
      When ‘doing good for others’, is your sense of goodness altered in any way when you use resources that you acquired and when you forcefully use the resources that others have acquired.”

      Since you feel that I haven’t properly addressed the issue unless I respond to this question, here is my response:

      Don, when I do good for others, I give of myself. If there is a material component to my giving, the resources are either supplied directly by me or through donations from others … no force is ever used in acquiring those resources.

      If you are referring to our government’s use of resources acquired by whatever means, and somehow wish to infer my guilt by association to that government, then I feel that I should ask you the same question. Is your sense of goodness altered when our tax dollars are forcefully taken and given to large corporations as tax concessions and huge subsidies solely benefiting them at taxpayer’s expense, while simultaneously cutting aid to the poor in the way of child care credits, food aid, housing aid, education aid, etc., or when our tax dollars are forcefully used to kill others in distant lands who posed no direct threat to us? Where is the moral high ground in those forced uses of our taxes? The same people who complain about giving our tax dollars to help the poor among us have no problem giving those same dollars to the rich among us. How do you like them apples? … as the saying goes.

      1. Gregory;
        Thank you for addressing some important issues. It is my first intention to bring clarity to ideas. I realize that when people identify with an idea and that idea is questioned there is a tendency to take criticism of it as a personal attack. Only when one becomes able to step outside of an idea can it be dissected without pain. Once having done so attendant feelings about that idea grow in appropriateness. Feelings are not eradicated. They shift toward a representation of what is more TRULY meaningful.
        About “doing good”:
        First figure out what works best, do it, and then enjoy attendant feelings that are appropriate by virtue of having ACTUALLY improved something. I have noticed that a great many, particularly on the left side of the spectrum, do not think through the full consequences of their actions. Often what is called “moral” isn’t. Minimum wages, almost all economists understand, do not benefit the poor more than they harm the poor. There is a tendency to put feeling good, not actually doing good, as a primary concern. Too often well-intended welfare enables those we wish to help to be less than what they could be. Too often little consideration is given to the importance of the make-the-world-better producers when taxation is perceived by them to be an excessive burden and they (and us) are hurt by their backing off and or their lacking resources (profits) to expand good works.
        Some of the examples you have provided of tax dollars misused are additional examples of a too powerful government gone astray and playing unhealthy favorites. Our Country is soon to be with a 20 trillion National debt. Entitlements for all those “good” causes you have listed (and more) extend us much further into the red. The dollar as a promissory note-in-which-we-can-trust is becoming a note in which we do not, (should not?) trust. This is very dangerous for us and the world. This extravagance in the name of “doing good” is not a good thing to have done.

  2. In response to GregoryS, 11/19/16 @ 4:37 PM

    “Mary Shelley wrote the masterful work of art, Frankenstein, where a monster was created. I’ve been told that you are a bit of an artist as well … maybe you were creating your own Frankenstein.”

    WELL SAID, Sir. But, the poor monster had a heart! This 2016 interpretation lacks everything that’s human … in a loving sort of way. Shelley’s monster who had not been taught and was searching. This updated monster was not taught the difference between love and lust … of every kind … power and physical.

    I tip m my hat to you, GregoryS. I did not lose my bet … I hear Dixie in the background.

    1. My goal is directed to determining what works best to ACTUALLY diminish suffering and enhance survivability. It is fascinating (and revealing to any objective thinker) when an honest effort to do this most important of life-saving things is considered instead to be a heartless, “monstrous” thing. Notice that SB and Gregory are not attending to the issues I have raised in a logical form but are dealing with them in “attack the messenger” form. There are lessons here that need to be understood if the real goal is that of understanding and reducing excessive human suffering and conflict. Understanding REAL goals is a major issue. Being upset when confronted by a rational hypothesis provides a strong indicator that there are for that mind goals that are of a higher priority than those of determining the truth. My observation through the years has been that it is a need to protect (cherished) ideas rather than to test ideas that makes the difference. To the degree untested, we can believe anything that feels good. To the degree an idea NEEDS to be protected from testing, conflicts with other ideas can be resolved only through the destruction (or demonization, character assignation, etc.) of others.
      By the way SB, with her marvelous knowledge and love for the theatre arts, may find the following book both a travel through the arts pleasure and a rich source for inspired questing: “The Devils Pleasure Palace” by Michael Walsh.

  3. @Don Spencer Re: November 9, 2016 at 1:03 am (there was no reply button after your post)
    Sir,
    Grade is your judgment of your own character. Just as you control your own feelings, you control your own grade. What others think of you is none of your business. Whether you choose to adjust your choices or beliefs is totally up to you. You should never relinquish either to another person.

    Let me explain karma to you to aid your understanding by borrowing a quote from Alan W. Watts: “The way of Wisdom lies, therefore, in recognizing things which happen to you as your own karma—not as punishments for misdeeds or rewards for virtue (for there really is no “bad” or “good” karma), but as your own doing. For in this way you come to see that the real “you” includes both the controlled and the uncontrolled aspects of your experience.” ~ Alan W. Watts

    To answer your questions on “doing good for others”:
    First off, I stated “I believe that how much we are willing to do for others is a measure of goodness ….” You, sir, are the one who added the material component to the statement by your questions, so that answer would have to be yours, not mine. But I do agree with these three quotes:

    “If this is going to be a Christian nation that does not help the poor, either we have to pretend that Jesus is just as selfish as we are or we’ve got to acknowledge that he commanded us to love the poor and serve the needy without condition… and then admit that we just don’t want to do it.” ~ Stephen Colbert
    “Compassion is not weakness, and concern for the unfortunate is not socialism.” ~ Hubert Humphrey
    “Better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference.” ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt

    As for ascertaining whether Gods have religions, I can only judge by the Holy Books supposedly passed on by their divine guidance (if you believe that sort of thing). If you want an answer by definition:
    RELIGION: the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods; a particular system of faith and worship.

    Based on that definition, I’d have to ask you if you know of any God/Gods who worship Him/Her/Themselves? Religion by a continuation of the definition is worship of a God/Gods by followers/believers

    I hope I’ve answered your questions satisfactorily. Also, congratulations on the conservative wins. The GOP now controls the presidency, vice presidency, senate, house of representatives, and soon the SCOTUS. Now the fate of our nation is in their hands solely, so they will have no one else to blame for problems … though based on past evidence, I’m sure they will anyway. Donald Trump broke a record for false statements and uses of emotional abuse tactics all throughout his campaign … why would he stop now? Examples of emotional abuse tactics employed by Trump on a regular basis: 1) Lying 2) Denial 3) Blame Shifting 4) Moving the Goal Posts 5) Bait and Switch 6) Projecting 7) Generalizing & Exaggerating 8) Yelling/Shouting Over Someone 9) Fear-mongering 10) Body Shaming … to name a few.

    A Pastor cautions Christian women about those Trump-loving Men of the Christian Right:
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/11/4/1591173/-Pastor-cautions-Christian-women-on-the-Trump-loving-Men-of-the-Christian-Right-and-it-s-powerful

    I wish our nation a peaceful and prosperous future in unity … e pluribus unum.

    1. Generally it is fruitless to debate issues of faith. How many angels can dance on the head of a pin? But, religion and other faiths are a part of the landscape in which all of us must navigate. It is helpful to understand their dangers (and their benefits).
      To the degree untethered from the objective rules of nature one’s beliefs can soar – anywhere. The pleasurable feelings generated by such beliefs can fly to glorious heights. The major challenge of (material) survival for those who are navigating with such mindsets then becomes that of avoiding collisions with the objective realities and avoiding conflicts with others in similar free flight.
      Consider:
      Gregory: “To answer your questions on “doing good for others”: First off, I stated “I believe that how much we are willing to do for others is a measure of goodness ….” You, sir, are the one who added the material component to the statement by your questions, so that answer would have to be yours, not mine.”
      So for Gregory, “goodness” exists as something which is separate from the “material component”. As used by Gregory it then “exists” ONLY in support of the believer’s desire to think of himself as “good”. But later Gregory does link “goodness” to Jesus “helping the poor”. But what is the meaning of help? How would this help be “known” (or even be perceived) if the process did not result in a material change? But Gregory indicates that it is ONLY the thought that matters and not the material component, This way one can FEEL GOOD no matter the material consequences – no matter whether the effort to do “good” actually results in help or harm. Notice that by demeaning the material component Gregory avoided the challenge of answering my questions in a fashion that would require examining and explaining material-world consequences.

      1. Mr. Spencer,
        You put words into my mouth which did not come out of it:
        “So for Gregory, ‘goodness’ exists as something which is separate from the ‘material component’. As used by Gregory it then ‘exists’ ONLY in support of the believer’s desire to think of himself as ‘good’.”
        Then you go on to elaborate, putting even more unspoken words into my mouth, setting your framework.

        Those are YOUR words, not mine. Don’t try to frame what I say to suit your agenda. I could read to you what I said, but I can’t understand it for you … and quite frankly, I don’t care whether you understand anything that I feel or believe within the parameters which you wish to set. So, I stated my beliefs; understand them or don’t. I don’t wish to spend more time on the subject. Have a good day, sir.

      2. @ Don Spencer Re: November 9, 2016 at 8:01 pm

        How dare you, sir?! You’ve once again used the modus operandi of putting words into other’s mouths in order to reframe the issue to support your agenda. I will give you the following examples of such behavior on your part:

        “So for Gregory, ‘goodness’ exists as something which is separate from the ‘material component’. As used by Gregory it then ‘exists’ ONLY in support of the believer’s desire to think of himself as ‘good’

        You have a lot of gall to make such claims on my behalf. Nowhere did I make such claims or statements of my beliefs or feelings. Those are YOUR words, not mine. Here’s another example of you putting your own thoughts to pen, taking undue liberties at my expense in order to advance your agenda:

        “How would this help be ‘known’ (or even be perceived) if the process did not result in a material change? But Gregory indicates that it is ONLY the thought that matters and not the material component, This way one can FEEL GOOD no matter the material consequences – no matter whether the effort to do ‘good’ actually results in help or harm.”

        Nowhere did I state that! That is simply you reframing the few words I said into a context of your own choosing … I find those actions repugnant on your part.

        And here’s another example of you magically knowing my thoughts and beliefs when the words are those of your own choosing and none that I expressed:

        “Notice that by demeaning the material component Gregory avoided the challenge of answering my questions in a fashion that would require examining and explaining material-world consequences.”

        Sir, here are my words directly from my post: I stated “I believe that how much we are willing to do for others is a measure of goodness ….” You, sir, are the one who added the material component to the statement by your questions, so that answer would have to be yours, not mine.

        Sir, I made no mention of the material component in my first sentence and it was you who added that into the equation. Then, I called you out for putting words into my mouth (as you so often do) and stated that I made no mention of the material component, to which you, in the next post, claimed that I somehow was demeaning the material component and thereby avoiding the challenge of answering your questions in a way that suits your agenda. Bear in mind, that’s YOUR agenda, not mine. If you don’t like my answer because it doesn’t fulfill your agenda, too freaking bad! I gave my answer and you tried to reframe it adding your own words as to what my thoughts and feelings are. Are you a mind reader? Yet, you feel you are privileged to state my thoughts and feelings? You may enjoy some privileges in your life, but stating my thoughts and feelings are not among them.

        I’m shocked that you feel it’s your right to state my beliefs and feelings … it’s not … get over it! Mr. Spencer, feel free to state your own beliefs; don’t take the liberty of stating mine.

        1. I apologize to all for lashing out against DS. Post-election stress? Maybe. Others around the country are protesting against Trump, I lashed out at Mr. Spencer. Mr. Spencer, I actually believe that you have the makings of a fiction writer. Trump has books written for him as well. You managed to take this simple statement made in response to daedal2207:

          “I believe that how much we are willing to do for others is a measure of goodness (Socialist?), others believe that ego is more important.”

          … and reframed it using agendized questioning and statements to turn it into a remarkable work of fiction. Mary Shelley wrote the masterful work of art, Frankenstein, where a monster was created. I’ve been told that you are a bit of an artist as well … maybe you were creating your own Frankenstein. Kudos for your efforts, sir. Just don’t try to make me a character in your writings. Have a good day, sir.

  4. @daedal2207 & Don Spencer
    I read the post and DS’s comment and now I’m going to reply with what I feel is how our Democratic Republic got to this point. You don’t have to agree, but at least consider what I’m stating … that’s all I ask. I’m going to post an email that I sent out recently to several of my email groups (bipartisan composition).

    Explaining our elections: Democracy is war by other means

    Superficially, it is waged with ballots instead of bullets. At the end of the day, those ballots become bullets. Elections load real guns and aim them at real people.

    One faction democratically seizes power and influences policy.

    In this war, all sides are net losers, save one: the government.

    That is because “war is the health of the State.”

    The State and War

    The State and the government are two different things. The government is a ruling organization that is distinct from the populace it rules. The State is much more than that, and much less.

    More in that it includes everyone in the country. It is a mystic union of the entire populace, including both rulers and the ruled. It is the many becoming one and acting as one. E pluribus unum.

    Less in that it is imaginary. The State is a fiction that exists only in the minds of its believers. It is a superstition, an incoherent concept, because the many cannot act as one. Only individuals act. Individuals act similarly when they obey the same commandments. But it is still the individuals who are choosing such obedience.

    The State is a make-believe entity to which over-awed believers ascribe preferences, will, and agency: essentially, a god. True believers in this god (“patriots”) slavishly adhere to its preferences. They swallow the confused, incoherent notion that the State exists as a manifestation of their own collective will that works for their own collective benefit. The church and its god are one. This superstition that, in some vague sense, they are only enslaved to themselves makes such bondage easier to accept.

    In other words, the State is a herd mentality: an inclination in a person to renounce his individuality and subsume himself into a herd, a pack, a tribe, a horde, a gang, a cult, a collective. The believers revere and defer to their own “togetherness” as if it were a god. Deutschland uber alles.

    War is the health of this deified herd called the State because a state of war is a state of desperation, of flight or fight, of primal terror and hate. In such a besieged frame of mind, individuals dismiss the moral principles of civilization as unaffordable luxuries. The human soul regresses to unthinking indulgence in base animal impulses, renouncing civility for the law of the jungle. Toward enemy populations, it is eat or be eaten, kill or be killed, capture or be captured, plunder or be plundered.

    Other human beings are no longer deemed useful as voluntary partners in creative work, mutually beneficial trade, and friendly company. Instead, they are either fellow conscripts or enemies.

    Dissidents are ultimately shunned as heretics, rogues, outsiders. “If you’re not with us, you’re against us.” And outsiders are excluded entirely from the moral community. They are considered menaces and only useful as prey, as slaves, as sources of loot.

    In times of war, the pack must swarm in tandem; the herd must stampede in unison. In order for a collective to work coherently and deliberately toward a single war effort, it needs not only regimentation, but leadership. So people under siege seek a leader of the pack, a shepherd of the flock. This leadership is sought in the government.

    But even an oligarchy can prove too fractious for coherently prosecuting a war. So the people ultimately long for a single strongman, a dear leader, a führer.

    This is why governments are so eager to embroil their subjects in wars. The exigencies of war trigger bestial antagonism and collectivism that drive people to flock to the government’s feet like sheep and bleat to be shorn of their liberties.

    Democracy is a form of warfare. What sets it apart from other forms is that it is a civil war of legal plunder.

    We might also add legal murder and legal kidnapping. These activities, which we rightly regard as crimes when committed by anyone else, become uniquely legitimized when committed by agents of the imaginary State-god. Robbery becomes taxation, kidnapping becomes incarceration, murder becomes foreign policy.

    By supporting the welfare state and high taxes, the less-rich plunder the affluent and the rich. By supporting industry regulation, protectionism, and subsidies, rich producers plunder their less-rich consumers and competitors. “The State is that great fiction by which everyone tries to live at the expense of everyone else.” And everybody plunders by proxy via the same middleman: the government, which gets a cut of every pile of loot. So the government has a strong material incentive to pit its subjects against each other.

    And it’s not just plunder. In the wars on terror and drugs, for example, Americans murder foreigners by proxy and cage their neighbors by proxy, all in order to “feel safer.”

    What we have with an interventionist democratic state then is a Hobbesian state of affairs: a formalized proxy civil war of all against all. This kind of war is the health of the State, too. Democracy has the same impact on the human psyche as military war, only more low-grade and chronic.

    Since lives and livelihoods are on the line, political battles also induce desperation. The desperate times offer an excuse for desperate measures: for excluding political enemies from the moral community. Non-violent drug offenders can be buried alive in prison for decades. All’s fair in politics and war.

    In order to overwhelm political enemies, voters resort to the same kind of rank tribalism as do jingoists. Instead of nations, the relevant collective “herds” are political parties, interest groups, “movements,” etc. Partisans shout down any disloyal dissent emerging from within their ranks.

    Political violence is mob violence. The larger the crowd, the more anonymous its violence. And the impunity of anonymity, like the impunity of authority, unleashes man’s capacity for evil. Under the shielding anonymity of the lynch mob and the voting booth, any atrocity is on the table.

    Partisans vilify members of enemy political tribes. To prosecute their inter-tribal warfare, they become reliant on the government apparatus, which they use to inflict and defend against proxy violence. Never mind that it is that very institution that enables and emboldens others to hurt them: that pits all sides against each other. All factions are so preoccupied with using the government against each other, they are oblivious to the fact that the machine of power is their true and common enemy.

    Partisans, like patriots, clamor for leadership in order to be herded toward the sole objective of defeating the political enemy. They rally behind and take marching orders from their political leadership.

    Democratic politics is a vital power ritual for the government. It makes the government all-important, all-relevant, all-preoccupying; this is especially so during election season. Each side’s enemy candidate is demonized as an existential menace who can only be warded off by throwing all support behind your party’s candidate. “Candidate X is not perfect, but we must stop Candidate Y!”

    If your candidate wins power, you become doubly loyal to the regime to keep the enemy herds down. If your candidate loses, you become doubly determined to help your tribe regain its grip on the levers of power. Dismantling the machine is the last thing on your mind.

    Using democratic politics to foment civil strife is how the government divides and more fully conquers its subjects. And that is what is taking place in the United States at this time … war by other means!

    That’s the problem … so what is the solution? Building anew from the ground up. Legislators at all levels of government are tainted by the corrupting influences of money and power. They will never remove these influences of their own accord without a fight, so it’s up to the electorate to pass anti-corruption legislation to cleanse the government of the plutocracy’s influence. I support an organized movement called represent.us. Here’s a link to the site’s plan of action:
    https://represent.us/#theplan
    And here’s a pdf file showing what the Anti-Corruption Act consists of:
    http://anticorruptionact.org/wp-content/uploads/AACA_Full_Provisions.pdf

    Half of our nation’s citizens will be unhappy with the outcome, regardless of who wins the election. Let’s correct that situation.

    Thank you for your attention. Save us all … we’re all we’ve got.

    1. A complex statement Gregory S,there is a lot of truth contained here.Evolutionarily we exist in groups thus groups have survival value..Groups also compete with a zero sum complementarianism.Both realities require the creation of myths that invoke immortality and intimate interweaving with religious myths and beliefs with prior claim to immortality.DS ‘case for best choice and reasoned judgements(overdetermined) burns up under the lens of either perspective;thus becoming in my view,another religion.

      1. I understand what you’re saying. I choose to think of life a bit differently than most.

        In my reality, neither group religion nor state actually exist. We may swim with the school or run with the herd, but honestly, each of us makes our own decisions and choices. We may choose to follow along with the groups for security, for benefit, or out of blind allegiance (faith?), but we still each choose our own path. Our character determines whether our choices are good or evil, and even then our grade is based on our own beliefs. How we grade ourselves might not jive with how others perceive us. I’m sure DS thinks his choices are correct … you obviously disagree based on your beliefs. We all create our own karma. We are neither rewarded or punished by good or bad karma. Karma is our own doing and we each create our own character. There is an infinite blend from good to evil … choose wisely. I believe that how much we are willing to do for others is a measure of goodness (Socialist?), others believe that ego is more important.

        Since it’s in your field of study, I’m sure you grade using this model of the psyche: the id is the set of uncoordinated instinctual trends; the super-ego plays the critical and moralizing role; and the ego is the organized, realistic part that mediates between the desires of the id and the super-ego. I imagine that you will grade DS accordingly … and have. I could only judge others by my own character values … but who am I to judge?

        I will always stand up for those facing discrimination (be politically correct?), and against those who try to subjugate or marginalize others (bullies?). I believe we need separation of church and state (though I’ve stated that neither actually exists). I see the scandal of the evangelical mind in America to be that there is no evangelical mind. Morality is doing what is right regardless of what you are told; religion is doing what you are told regardless of what is right. Spirituality is okay, religion, not so much. Religion is the frozen thought of man out of which they build temples. Gods don’t have religions, followers do.

        I’ve taken enough of your time and the election results are due soon. So I will pour a glass of cabernet sauvignon and toast Hillary and hopefully a regain of the senate majority (sorry DS).

        1. Some questions for Gregory:
          If as you say “our grade” is based (solely?) on our own beliefs, does this mean that when reality punishes you for having self-destructive beliefs you don’t adjust those beliefs accordingly? It seems to me that nature plays a massive part in the “grading” process.
          Does your view of “Karma” isolate you from the impacts of the physical world?

          When “doing good for others”, is your sense of goodness altered in any way when you use resources that you acquired and when you forcefully use the resources that others have acquired?

          How do you “know” that Gods do not have religions?

          Questions for Daedal2207:
          Please elaborate on what you mean when you write, “Groups also compete with a zero sum complementarianism.”

          Explain “overdetermined”?

          Does the following statement alter your answer to that question? I thought that I explained that we have no option but to have beliefs. There is a difference between faith and probability. And why measurable evidence is the “better” criteria for determining the difference between all forms of better and lesser. This does not exclude the likelihood that in numerous cultural and environmental contexts SOME faith based beliefs are helpful by guiding us in MEASURABLY better ways.

  5. There is “rabid emotionalism” on the part of both campaigns. With an electorate more interested in sentiment than cerebral substance the power of emotional manipulation seems to work. For instance, calling something “immoral” is an emotional tactic. (Describing with evidence the negative or positive consequences of an activity would be cerebral.) Daedal2207 demonstrates an emotional tactic by demonizing as “immoral” a fundamental human drive. “The love of money and power” is the essence of capitalism. It is government’s protection of competition, the freedom to compete, (an individual’s right to his pursuit of happiness) that harnesses-for-the-good that extra dimension of energy that drives the wealth of invention and productivity that saves so many lives. The Democrat Party has violated many fundamentals of “capitalism” as it leans more and more to consider that “money” is first of all the government’s to be printed, controlled and distributed by officials believing themselves wiser (more moral) in its use than the citizens. For instance, Democrat leaders believe themselves to be the better judge of a worker’s value to a business than the employer when it demands “equal pay” and “minimum wages”.
    Asking about “ethical firewalls” is a legitimate concern and the Clinton’s massive rise in personal wealth as “public servants” should raise some big red flags as regards this issue. The attempt to destroy e-mails (many after Congress demanded they be released) should raise even more red flags. And then we have WIKILeaks and other revelations about a Democrat official literally hiring goons to create violent protests at Trump rallies. Records show that the individual responsible for arranging such activities also had many one-on-one visits with the President. And then, we have an accidently discovered plane-on-tarmac visit by Bill Clinton with the head of the Justice Department (Loretta E. Lynch) while the FBI is probing possible Hillary illegalities.
    It is reasonable to have a number of fears – not just those selected by Daedal2207. The election is a means by which we confront legitimate concerns. Wisdom is always important. This election another factor assumes an importance like never before – we need to be lucky.

    1. In response to DS …

      Sir, you still clarify nothing … other than your own source of worship. However, far be it for me to teach, Your Eloquence, manners. But, the correct name of the political party you fear is Democratic Party … not Democrat Party (http://www.factcheck.org/2007/12/the-democratic-or-democrat-party/). Funny because I “worship” at the altar of Abraham Lincoln rather than Andrew Jackson. Go figure. To quote a quip on The Economist on the disrespectful usage of a proper name (http://www.economist.com/blogs/johnson/2012/02/names): “Advice to Democrats: this is the behaviour of attention-seeking children. Ignore it.” One has to wonder if, in the author’s reference to “children,” he was foretelling the child-like, bad-mannered behavior and thought process of the standard bearer on whom the Republic Party … excuse me … the Republican Party has pinned its hopes and dreams.

      DS: “… calling something ‘immoral’ is an emotional tactic.”

      Careful. Children might be listening.

      Tarmac. Ah, all those conspiracies. It must be all that “cerebral substance.” “Equal pay” for equal work. Perish the thought. Bring back the Dark Ages! Wisdom. Our country will need all the wisdom it can muster. To be sure, the world is sitting on pins and needles on this one.

      DS: “This election another factor assumes an importance like never before – we need to be lucky.”

      Boy, on that one you ain’t whistling Dixie. Actually, I bet you are.

      1. I said “Democrat party”. SB says it should be called the “Democratic party”. If the Democrats today are more accurately described as “Progressives” the focus of the party is less toward democracy and more towards dependency (on that party remaining in control). Sometimes rules of “style” can be altered to describe a more accurate content.

        SB writes, “Sir, you still clarify nothing … other than your own source of worship.”
        Ah, if only that form of clarification was true! But the quality of support for our “own source of worship” is fundamental, so let’s get into that issue. If you recognize that we have no option but to have beliefs (and that I have some favorites) you are displaying some wisdom. With no option but to have beliefs the issue for each and every one of us becomes specifically that of embracing the “best” beliefs. Because I consider it the most important, perhaps it could be said that I “worship” the “process” of learning. The best means to give homage to this “belief” seems to be the scientific method. The scientific method establishes hypotheses meant to be tested and adjusted – (probability, not certainty rules). But the term “worship” usually applies to beliefs of faith which are to be protected. With faith it is a desire for certitude (not adjustment) that rules – that is not what I recommend.
        Becoming enthusiastic with the scientific process provides interesting psychological benefits. The ego tends to be thrilled with the process of searching out, experiencing well supported new evidence and adjusting beliefs accordingly. It avoids being angered, or saddened, or “threatened” with a sense of loss as the experience of new evidence imposes on so many who lock their comforts within the walls of faith. (When those walls are threatened have you noticed how often Progressives express outrage and offence?)

        SB: “Equal pay” for equal work. Perish the thought. Bring back the Dark Ages!”
        The “dark ages” were feudal and were likely to have lords dictating the distribution of resources. It appears that we are with the expansion of Leftism experiencing an old-fashioned rebirth of centralized power, coercion, and dictate. This is more in tune with “back to the dark ages”. As SB indicates, she wants Government to tell us what forms of work are “equal” – and also regulate who should be paid “equally”. It is the enlightened and super-productive age of free markets and individual liberties that the Leftists are abandoning.

        SB loses her bet, but I hope that she and all others on this Election Day will be lucky.

    2. This is out of sequence Don but zero sum complimentarity refers awkwardly to a winner take all mentality like two fledgling creatures competing for a mother’s favor where she can only feed one and the other must die.Overdetermined refers to the summation of influences such that outcome appears inevitable.(Genes and environment) It is different from fully determined because variation does occur perhaps as a survival back door.Does any of this help?

      1. Response to Daedal2207 comment 10 Nov 16 at 6:15pm
        Yes, your explanation provides for us a footing on which new thoughts can be supported (or challenged). The “winner take all mentality” describes, as you say, the destruction of the “loser”. But in this real world where most competing “groups” do not have distinct edges (we overlap, we interbreed) the zero sum” factor needs to be clarified with context. After all, I understand that there can be found in today’s Homo sapiens genetic markers that stem from the Neanderthal group. Race is a many blended thing and becoming more so. The character of various cultures is constantly in flux and clearly some of them are more in harmony with longevity and healthy adjustment than are others. I agree that religious and other faith based beliefs too are an essential part of our reality and thus group think based on ideas that are not rooted in objectively measurable substance will always be part of the human scene. To the degree that nature is selecting the fittest I suppose that the zero sum factor can have meaning. Our judgments about nature and the resources we will need will hopefully allow us to shape and be among those belief systems that will be successful. As for “groups” that are abstractly created such as the various percentiles of wealth, these as groups will always exist as separate entities, but INDIVIDUALS in a free system will flow among them depending on individual aptitudes and skills. We certainly do not want the aggregate or individual skills of those in the lowest or any percentile to be wasted, and for pragmatic reasons alone we should do our best to see to it that no one among any of these “groups” is deprived of basically needed resources.
        I fail to see where any of this, as you say, “burns up” my recommendations for making best choice and reasoned judgements. You label it “another religion. I think that it could be considered “another religion” only if there is no difference between the following two options”
        One: Premise – We (I) don’t know how much we do not know. Therefore our best understanding of TRUTH exists on the basis of probabilities. Our understanding of Truth is an adjustable, running argument. The responsibility linked to this concept is that of conducting the argument with as much disciplined reasonableness as possible.
        Two: Premise – We (I) do know. The TRUTH is known with certitude and my “group” has the responsibility of protecting (and often proselytizing) that TRUTH.
        If the first of these two options (the one I favor) is a “religion”, what is not a religion?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s