Carola wrote: If there are any stray billionaires out there wanting to finance a worthwhile project - this could be it! Get all this stuff on-line before it vanishes!
annis wrote:I recently spent some time wondering whom I would ask, and what sort of procedural gyrations I would have to undertake, to get a grant to do some Old Occitan (a.k.a. Old Provencal, language of the Troubadors) work up like Perseus. I'm not an academic institution, so it's not bloody likely, but I can dream.
Carola wrote:Yes Wiiliam - when you think of the billions wasted on producing ghastly sit-coms on TV, useless adverts, wars and political campaigns you wonder why we can't spend a bit more increasing the world's knowledge. In fact we could probably feed and clothe AND educate most of the world with the money wasted on making useless trashy TV shows! I just read in the paper about $20million AUS being spent on a "talent quest" show here. I mean, who cares? $20million would provide enough to give a musical education to every child in this state, but I guess it doesn't sell soap powder!
Emma_85 wrote:And this is where Marxis Theory comes in... lol hope Lex doesn't read this.
Today's economics have worked out that with Marxist theory (not what those east block dictators made of his economic theory, but the real thing, which is like nearly the opposite!) everyone would only have to work 3 hours a day and then could spend the rest of the time doing things like learning musical instruments, reading literature and going to the theatre. And this is the only point in which Marxist theory is flawed, because he thinks that everyone is nice, would go to work, help others and everyone wants culture. In reality, though, people would be bored and long for soap operas. So the question is do we really want no luxury goods at all, just the basics and culture, or soap operas and luxury goods, which just don't make us happy? It seems most people want the soap operas...
Emma_85 wrote:And this is where Marxis Theory comes in... lol hope Lex doesn't read this.
Emma_85 wrote:Today's economics have worked out that with Marxist theory (not what those east block dictators made of his economic theory, but the real thing, which is like nearly the opposite!) everyone would only have to work 3 hours a day and then could spend the rest of the time doing things like learning musical instruments, reading literature and going to the theatre.
Emma_85 wrote:And this is the only point in which Marxist theory is flawed,
Emma_85 wrote:because he thinks that everyone is nice, would go to work, help others
Emma_85 wrote:and everyone wants culture.
Emma_85 wrote:In reality, though, people would be bored and long for soap operas. So the question is do we really want no luxury goods at all, just the basics and culture, or soap operas and luxury goods, which just don't make us happy?
Emma_85 wrote:It seems most people want the soap operas...
tdominus wrote:Do you want an internet connection? Mobile phones? Computers?
Marxist theory is flawed on many grounds. It is a purely imaginary economic system, which in many respects is more a religion than a means of economy. Personally I find it a little offensive when people say that communism or marxism is a "good idea"
Lex wrote:Face it, Emma, you're part of the intellectual elite (except in economics ). You have more rarefied tastes than the average Joe Sixpack (or Sechsstein, in German?). But since your rarefied tastes are expensive, you would like everybody else to share your tastes so that you can enjoy the economies of scale that the lovers of soap operas enjoy. And if the market doesn't provide this, then you would rather the government do it.
In other words, you're a snob, who resents the [face=SPIonic]oi( polloi/[/face] because they don't like what you like, thus making it affordable for you.
annis wrote:I would argue that all politics represents this sort of conflict of interests being worked out, so, drop the snob language and we're left with a simple statement that politics is about resolving conflicts of interest.
Emma_85 wrote:I just think it's sort of sad the way we are, that this perfect place that does not exist just can't exist, because of the way humans are (which is... uh... human ). But that doesn't mean we should resign and not try to do what we can to make this world better.
Emma_85 wrote:I believe you need money to be happy, but not that being very rich makes you happy, once you have the basics, all the rest is just ...uhh... rubbish.
Emma_85 wrote:That’s the really strange thing... of course the DDR was terrible because of the Stasi and the people there had no voice, don’t think I wanted to live there... but the thing is that quite a few Germans (over half of East Berlin voted for their old dictatorship in the last election, so we now have a Red- Dark Red coalition in Berlin trying to clear up the mess, which I don’t think they’ll be able to do) feel that they were in fact happier back in East Germany.
Emma_85 wrote:I’ve been to east Berlin and talked to the people there, and seen the documentaries on TV, it’s strange that these luxuries we enjoy would make such little difference isn’t it?
Emma_85 wrote:actually I want them to spend the money on tv programmes on Johnny Depp
Emma_85 wrote:just something I'm interested in here, do you think grass should be leagalised, Lex?
Emma_85 wrote:Cause if they had the choice I think people would spend their money one something else than TV
Emma_85 wrote:, well most do anyway (it's sort of legal for me where I live, but the laws very strange, you're allowed to own it, but not allowed to buy it ).
Emma_85 wrote:the government should then spend no money on any anti drugs campains or anything else like that
Emma_85 wrote:because no one wants to watch their stupid ads
Lex wrote:No, politics is about forcing people to do what you want. There's no real resolution of conflict, except in the sense that one side wins and the other side loses.
After all, she's told us that she favors Marxism, and that's what Marxists favor; redistributing other peoples' wealth.
annis wrote:Lex wrote:No, politics is about forcing people to do what you want. There's no real resolution of conflict, except in the sense that one side wins and the other side loses.
Yikes. Since I've lived all my life in the U.S.
annis wrote:for me getting your own way in the political sphere usually means you have to convince a bunch of other people to agree with you, usually by argumentation of some sort, compromise, give and take (or, for the cynical, by means of crass, propagandistic PR). I have been offered violence in the past to encourage me to change my stance on a few matters but that approach to domestic politics is frowned on most of the time.
annis wrote:Regardless, I still don't see how an accusation of resentment or snobbery makes any useful point.
Lex wrote:Really? We take a different view of government, then. I take the view of George Washington and John Adams; "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence. It is force." and "Fear is the foundation of most governments".
Specifically, domestic government is a pack of alpha male dogs skirmishing over how the bones that have been taken by force from lesser dogs are to be divvied up amongst their supporters. It's just that these dogs have the curious ability that they are able to conveniently forget that the bones were stolen in the first place.
Never mind that I qualified that I don't think that her snobbery is necessarily a bad thing, or that I disagree with it....
It's just that I, unlike Emma, think that socialism is a cure worse than the disease.
Kasper wrote:So all people should be able to do what they want, without invading other peoples rights. You will have to excuse my ignorance, for I do not know what specific rights you mean, but who is to stop them? Perhaps it is a Theban blindness, but I do not see how we can without a government that makes laws, that enforces laws and sets retribution on breaking these laws.
Kasper wrote:But what rights do people have? I assume that if I feel like bashing in someone's windshield you would consider that a violation of another persons right to the safety of his or her property. The same for bashing up a person, just because I feel like it. Just to prevent these things from happening, could we say it might be convenient to make a written law for these rights?
Kasper wrote:How about the right to drive a car? I do need a road. Do I have the right to a road?
Kasper wrote:Do I have the right to a pavement Lex, for free?
Kasper wrote:And when I walk on this pavement right, do I have the right not step in some drunk's vomit?
Kasper wrote:And where shall I walk to? How about school? I have the right to education, right?
Kasper wrote:Yet again, who will provide this education Lex? and at what price? private organisations again.
Kasper wrote:educatin for who can afford it? but don't i have the right to it, regardless of what my parents make, for am I not human, with all my human rights Lex?
Kasper wrote:and if I do have the right to education, health care, clean water, electricity, roads, protection of myself and my property, but I cannot afford it, doesn't this conflict?
Kasper wrote:I realise this would almost be on the brink of the root of all evil, socialism, but don't I have the right to it Lex?
Kasper wrote:I'm just a bit confused..........
Episcopus wrote:Is it that I alone am punished for forcing that a thread crash off-topic whilst others are encouraged to do thus by the moderators?
annis wrote:I like to read history, and this influences my worldview in three ways:
First, reading about, say, the Albigensian crusade or Stalin's terror really makes one cynical. The ability of humans to bring together masses of organized unfriendliness - some crossing generations - is really amazing and depressing. Even Herodotus has horrors. The stupidity that lead to WWI is breathtaking. This does not lead to a happy assessment of long term human capabilities.
annis wrote:Second, at the same time I know there is no previous time in history that I would want to live in, even if I could guarantee I didn't end up a slave or a serf. And so...
annis wrote:Third, when I can calm down I can take a very long view of history. Over a several hundred year span I can see what I would consider real progress in ethics (slavery is not something most people would support in the U.S. today, though it was commonplace not too long ago).
annis wrote:I don't believe in perfection in human affairs, so I also see politics and economics as a long term project. Obviously I want improvement now, in my own lifetime, but I think at this point history has clear things to say about totalizing, all-or-nothing political and economic revolutions.
annis wrote:But more is right than was a few 100 years ago, so I'm willing to keep at it, naive though that may be.
annis wrote:Never mind that I qualified that I don't think that her snobbery is necessarily a bad thing, or that I disagree with it....
I'm a huge fan of elitism! Everyone should be! The resentment charge I objected to; it comes up a lot in political debate.
annis wrote:It's just that I, unlike Emma, think that socialism is a cure worse than the disease.
And what cure do you recommend?
annis wrote:(Oy. George Lakoff says that one of the problems with liberals is that since they seem to think if you keep trying to reason with people you will ultimately prevail, they talk too much! Alas, I am an example sometime.)
and emma, i disagree that moral is against human nature. it might be against behaviour, but behaviour can be changed.
Not murdering people is a legal duty. Not stealing is a legal duty. Giving money to pay for the educations of underprivileged children, on the other hand, is not a legal duty.
Emma_85 wrote:What I mean is that we have invented moral so that we can get along in groups and in a society. No society can function in without any form of moral, you don't have societies without morals. Of course we all have morals, so maybe that makes it part of human nature sort of. What I meant is that it is not like something encoded in your genes, but man made so that we can live in groups.
Emma_85 wrote:What do you mean with human behaviour, though? If you mean how humans would behave without morals (as they would behave like naturally (I mean, like they would behave like if genes were all that counted and no sort of education existed)) then we mean the same thing. Maybe I just didn't explain it right.
Emma_85 wrote:You argue that we don't have a right to anything really.
Emma_85 wrote:That I should not pay the government any money, so basically it doesn't do anything, I don't do anything for it and so I don't have a right to ask anything of it.
Emma_85 wrote:Humans would have got nowhere without the formation of nations or even towns or villages. Only together they are strong. There would be no culture if all people did was earn money and spend it on themselves, as no one can earn enough money themselves to pay for something like a road, only if everyone pays a few cents a year, can a motorway be built, from which everyone can then profit. That is a basic law of economics and you are at fault to ignore this very basic thing.
Emma_85 wrote:Not murdering people is a legal duty. Not stealing is a legal duty. Giving money to pay for the educations of underprivileged children, on the other hand, is not a legal duty.
Is law not what the state, that is its sovereign or its people decide should be law?
Emma_85 wrote:And taking many things into account they have decided that education is something everyone has a right to, as they have come to the conclusion that everyone is equal at birth.
Emma_85 wrote:Rich kids don't deserve an education and the resulting opportunities an education offers anymore than poor kids do.
Are rich kids worth more?
Emma_85 wrote:The world is not just, so rich kids do have it better, but not that much better.
Emma_85 wrote:It is possible to alleviate this injustice, it's easy when everyone sticks together and pays some taxes, so why not do it? Is it not a moral duty to try and fight injustice where every possible? I think that is very important.
Emma_85 wrote:Hmm... I thought the title of this thread was frustration , thought we were meant to frustrate you... oh well ...
maybe the specifics of our morality are not encoded in our genes.
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