Reparations for American Blacks

Menshevik

Ad Honorem
Dec 2012
9,115
here
In principle, I'd agree with what you are saying here; a society full of good-faith interlocutors would benefit from striving towards a set of unified definitions to maximize communicative clarity. In practice, we don't live in a society of good-faith interlocutors, and telling people they are wrong about the definitions of words rarely succeeds in changing their ways. It is often going to be the case that the best we can do is to try to understand what others mean while explaining as best we can what we ourselves mean. Conversation would often profit by moving away from broad categorical terms like "socialism" and remaining in narrow, descriptive terms like policy suggestions anyway. Categorical terms make it too easy and convenient to try to argue against others by pushing them into a "label box" and dismissing them. "What you're saying is socialism, and that makes it wrong," or, "I can see now that you're a racist, I've no longer any need to listen to you," or so forth. Which is better: to discuss a particular policy or idea and perhaps convince the other party that it is a good idea (even if they only realize it's a good idea later on, when there's no face to be lost by changing their view in person), or to quarrel with them about the strict definition of a word like socialism and ensure the conversation goes no where?
Maybe I'm misunderstanding you.....

But, I don't see the point in discussing anything with someone who isn't a "good-faith interlocutor." If someone is unwilling to be open minded and really consider whether they are using terms incorrectly, why then should I assume that they have good faith in any other area or topic of debate?
 
Dec 2011
2,160
Which is better: to discuss a particular policy or idea and perhaps convince the other party that it is a good idea (even if they only realize it's a good idea later on, when there's no face to be lost by changing their view in person), or to quarrel with them about the strict definition of a word like socialism and ensure the conversation goes no where?
The problem is, there are people who decide to label an idea as socialism, even though it isn't, and, since they believe socialism is evil, or a "sickness of the mind", they have decided that they will never believe that the idea is good.
 

macon

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
3,868
Slovenia, EU
I view all government as inherently evil and what they take from people in a big percentage only enriches political cronnies and disrupts economy. Whatever country you live in corruption and state crime are only on a rise everywhere. Less money for government---> better for society as a whole.
 
Dec 2011
2,160
I view all government as inherently evil and what they take from people in a big percentage only enriches political cronnies and disrupts economy. Whatever country you live in corruption and state crime are only on a rise everywhere. Less money for government---> better for society as a whole.
That's an extraordinary view. You regard all government as inherently evil, so do you want there to be no government at all? If so, who makes the laws? Or shouldn't we have laws?
 

macon

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
3,868
Slovenia, EU
That's an extraordinary view. You regard all government as inherently evil, so do you want there to be no government at all? If so, who makes the laws? Or shouldn't we have laws?
No, I never claimed that I want an anarchy. I want as little power and funds in hands of government as possible because they are not working for you or me.
 

Asherman

Forum Staff
May 2013
3,216
Albuquerque, NM
"I view all government as inherently evil ... " The absence of government is ... anarchy, a most peculiar human version of chaos. In the absence of government we revert to "Might makes Right". What are governments anyway?

Even before our species abandoned jungles for savannas, we lived in social groups for mutual comfort and security. We are still basically clever herd animals still largely driven by our collective genetic and cultural heritage to be part of social units larger than the individual. Stable social groups are only possible when that group behaves within a set of rules, taboos, or laws. That would all be very fine if we were dumb brutes with short memories incapable of reason. We like all the benefits of living in a society governed by a common set of values and rules of behavior, but we being self-aware we are just as determined to live without any strictures on our personal desires. When the values of an individual differ from those of their society, dissonance even violence result. Humans developed at least two fundamental institutions to provide the values and rules to make community life possible. They are of course, Government and Religion. Government and Religion, most often working hand in glove, provide the foundations of the specie's success. Those pre-paleolithic institutions are still with us, though they have certainly evolved a whole lot to get us where we are today. While we were still nomadic hunter/gatherers, government/religion decided what rules the whole tribe lives within. Government protects "our" food and water supplies from ... the Other, and organizes our tribe's expansion into new and more fruitful territory. Whenever one group makes any sort of "advancement", other groups adopt, adapt, retreat or attack. Being a single individual is dangerous. Government coordinates and plans group efforts that make civilization possible.

I don't think we can do without government and still remain human, but there are a lot of different ideas about what a government should be. The coercive nature of government may have grown out of "Might makes Right" and the resistance that probably began at the same moment. History is a dusty museum of "The Great" leaders who laid the foundations of today's world, but they all became dust and legends whilst the social forces they participated in are with us still. Currently are at the beginning of a new Era with new technologies, but we aren't much different now than we crowded around a small fire to keep away predators of all sorts. The Greeks commonly get credit for the notion that individuals are perfectly capable of democratic government. It was a failed experiment, but it lived on when rustic Rome, free of Etruscan domination, did away with kings and formed a Republic. Rome too was flawed but the experiment lasted much longer, and Roman influence during late antiquity is still evident in today's world. We humans haven't had any better luck with Religion as a means of living peacefully and productively together. The Abrahamic Religions have been dominant a long time. The Wars of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation should have taught us the dangers of getting Religion and Government mixed. The currents that brought Europeans to the New World, also planted the seeds for a most radical experiment in government. I mean of course, the U.S. Constitution that has served this nation and its people very, very well since 1787.

The Constitution is not perfect, but is the best effort humans have made so far to balance the needs of society with our common aspirations for un-checked personal liberty. The Constitution is, I think based on mistrust of leaders no matter how they are called. Divide'em up and put one to watch the others. Big fish eat small fish, so the Constitution gives small States equal standing with all the rest in the Senate and selection of the Chief Executive, we call the President. The Representatives are allotted districts small enough for citizens to actively participate in, and can only serve two years. Until the Constitution was Amended providing for popular election of each State's two Senators, the States chose Senators however they wished. Don't like it? Change it, or move to another State or territory. The founders recognized that sometimes the Tyrant isn't an individual, but a group. A majority of citizens can be either part of a Jury, or a Mob bent on depriving some other poor soul/group of their liberties and opportunities. With the dawn of the 20th century came a massive sea-change in human relations. Science, Technology, and Engineering made astounding discoveries. Time and distance shrank faster than a toddler could grow out of knee-pants. A man born on the almost empty American frontier could live to sit in an air-conditioned house listening to the President of the U.S., declare War on Japan. The Twentieth Century is passing into legend. Complex problems of those times are now made over-simplified, but the detail is lost. Before FDR it would have been difficult to find anyone who didn't firmly believe the Federal Government had no business meddling in the private businesses of individuals, businesses, of States. LBJ doubled-down, and Nixon outed the tooth-fairy.

A professor once asked who do ye mean when ye say, "they"? Government is only a set in how we define our world, but what is it ultimately? Is it government or people who enforce the rules? The government clerk is just doing their job as directed by other folks higher on the food-chain. Where does the chain end, at the President or with the people carry out his vision? We've sent representatives to Congress to act on our behalf, and they are just people. We let the activists who tend to be True Believers. Our elected leaders are chosen more for their voter appeal than for how competent and prepared they are to handle the most complex problems humans have faced thus far, Effectiveness and preparation for Office is less important than slogans and wishful thinking. Congress has for a very long time found it easier to give up its responsibilities to the Executive, and finally an Executive is almost the definition of what the Constitution was designed to protect us from. It aint politics, not even partisan politics so much as it is complacency ... focus.
 
Likes: Tulius
Feb 2019
342
California
Sure it's a great idea---after we offset the costs that hosting black "culture" have imposed on the country since a million non-blacks died to free them from slavery.

In just the latest of 1,000,000 examples, it is now legal to steal up to $749 in Dallas, Texas because the local DA believes that too many blacks are incarcerated. Get out your checkbooks, black America.....

Should All Thefts Be Prosecuted? Dallas County's District Attorney Says No
 

Fox

Ad Honorem
Oct 2011
3,905
Korea
Maybe I'm misunderstanding you.....

But, I don't see the point in discussing anything with someone who isn't a "good-faith interlocutor." If someone is unwilling to be open minded and really consider whether they are using terms incorrectly, why then should I assume that they have good faith in any other area or topic of debate?
Well, I will not necessarily say what you should or should not do, but even a person who is not truly discussing in good faith might have useful information or insights to provide. That said, if you feel they lack either information or insight, then I can see why you'd not want to bother.
 

Fox

Ad Honorem
Oct 2011
3,905
Korea
That includes a move to stop prosecuting people for theft of personal items worth less than $750. It only applies to necessary items, Creuzot says. Theft for economic gain or resale will be charged.

“If they’re stealing $750 worth of diapers, let’s be honest: It’s going to take a lot of rear ends to put $750 worth of diapers on, so that probably doesn’t fit that category and so we would prosecute that case,” Creuzot said.

Prosecuting poor people for stealing essential items wastes taxpayer money because they won’t come out any more financially stable after they serve their sentence, Creuzot says, and prosecution doesn’t help the business that is stolen from either.
So does this fellow simply not believe the threat of prosecution produces a deterring effect, or what? I can see some potential merit in altering prosecution patterns regarding drug infractions, but theft targets the very businesses and citizens that keep your local economy running. Why should they remain in the community and pay taxes to fund a D.A.s office that shrugs when they are victims of theft. If the community is worried about people not having enough diapers or somesuch, there are other ways to handle that.
 

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