1-24-21 9:57  •  Ease and Strain

Roper: This world needs to toughen up a bit! Apparently females in the military want to change regulations so they can wear their hair down. They are complaining that the tight buns they have to wear are hurting their heads, giving them headaches, damaging their hair and causing hair loss.

Military hair needs to be above the collar, period. They wanted to be equal and serve with men, they need to get over it!!

lately: I get what you’re saying. To have equality, the standards should be the same.

All people seek ease from strain. It's perfectly natural. The great thing about people is we can take enormous strain, if it is worthwhile, and if it will result in greater ease in the long run.

But why strain over something not important? Be comfortable enough to work without distraction. Military people have hard jobs, I would not want to increase their strain and distraction with uncomfortable fashion regulations.

To make the standards equal, people should be allowed comfortable hair length including men.

1-20-21 11:12  •  Tolerating Riots

TD: After Trump's mob attacked the Capitol, it's interesting to see the right scramble to deflect, draw false equivalencies, revise history.... literally anything to avoid acknowledging what their ideology and movement has culminated in.

FH: You should listen though, because they are right.

Riots and murder cannot be tolerated in a civilized society. This society allowed it for months, and the violence increased.

We cannot ignore that while expecting the future to improve.

The riots were people not tolerating murder.

FH: And in turn people were murdered because of their anger.

And in turn people were arrested. What is the tolerating?

Sharon: In all fairness, the end doesn’t justify the means. Riots shouldn’t be tolerated either.

Rioting is not undertaken deliberately by people who believe that it is justified. It is an explosion of frustration. What should we have done to "tolerate" it less?

1-11-21 12:51  •  Black Lives Matter vs Stop the Steal

Marigold: Serious question...how is this any different than the blood on our streets from all the BLM/Antifa riots? People/Cops were shot and killed, business were destroyed, burned down and looted?

I've been against all the riots happening and I don't see the difference in any of these except for who side they are on.

There are several differences.

The Black Lives Matter protests were a response to a specific, real and measurable injustice, the murder of black people by police. While there was some high-profile rioting, the vast majority of the BLM protests were peaceful. The rioting was not planned, or instigated or incited by elected officials. This is what happens when the truth about centuries of injustice comes into sharp relief.

The Capitol assault was in response to a bullshit lie about a stolen election. It was not peaceful. At best, they were trying to interrupt and reverse the mandated transfer of power that is at the heart of democracy; at worst, they were there planning to perform abductions and executions. And it was instigated by the President of the United States to hold onto his power and flatter his wounded ego.

This is what happens when the truth about centuries of injustice is covered up to maintain the injustice.

Mips: So everyone who supports BLM should be condemned for the riots. Every religious person should be condemned because of a few zealots. This is what is wrong with this nation and the world right now. No party has the right to claim they are innocent in the divide or corruption, no one has the moral high ground.

No, the bad ideologies must be condemned. Black Lives Matter is true. They are fighting for necessary changes in the criminal justice system and society at large than has been disenfranchising and murdering them for centuries. That is a moral position, and people who get out of hand at their events are the exception.

"Stop the Steal" is false. They are fighting for complete bullshit. Getting out of hand was the goal. The party that supported the lies are utterly to blame for these dopes believing a fairy story and every person who spread lies should be condemned for it. There is no moral equivalency.

Mips: Saying "stop the steal" represents/speaks for all Republicans is like saying the rioters represent/speaks for all blacks or even all of BLM. It's just not true.

Who did they vote for? Are you saying Trumpism is not what Republicans overwhelmingly want?

"Stop the Steal" may be a subset, but it speaks for a very broad movement within the Republican party that has a great deal of power and many sitting elected officials on their side. It includes every Republican who did not denounce Trump's lies about the election from the beginning. The BLM rioters were universally condemned by Democrats and most BLM leadership. The leader of Stop the Steal (and many Republicans) egged his group on.

They had a chance to spare their party this association. They could have condemned the lies about the stolen election from the start. Where were the Republicans who don't support this a week ago?

1-11-21 12:21  •  True Religion

AM: I don't understand the Trinity. Can someone explain it?

Pamela: It's religion, it's not something you understand with your intellect, but on a faith level it can be believed.

Anything can be believed on a faith level. Religions have stated everything and adherents believed. One god, many gods, triune gods, demigods...before lives, afterlives, reincarnation...power of prayer, power of shrines, power of blood sacrifice...faith is not picky. Under certain circumstances, people will believe literally anything.

Pamela: Yes, anything can be believed. That's kind of the point of religion. If everything you needed to believe could be quantifiably proven it would be called science. (though, in science even a theory is running on a small amount of faith

Not every religion requires belief, and it would be better off without it. Science has verification. Religion with verification would be better.

Pamela: All theistic religions require a measure of belief. And while you believe the world would be better off without religion for many people that belief in a higher being gives them a sense of purpose. Religion and faith are two different things.

I'm not sure why you're arguing the value of religious belief in a thread asking for a person's explanation of the Holy Trinity, though.

Not all religions are theistic. I do not think the world would be better off without religion at all. I think religion would be better if it was true.

I agree, religion and faith are two very different things, and I think religion without faith would be a wonderful innovation. Why claim anything that isn't true? Religion does not require it. Imagine a complete cosmology, ritual structure and spiritual technology woven around the true and verifiable story of our origins, always changing as our knowledge grows? It could be glorious.

I am arguing the value of belief because it is important and doesn't come up often enough.

I really appreciate the opportunity to speak of this, thanks so much Pamela!

1-11-21 12:08  •  Truth and Reconciliation

Cyriluse: That's part of the problem. US, THEM... Your attitude (in general) will keep us divided. Black / white - Dems / Repubs - Americans / government....... We are DIVIDED. It doesn't matter WHO takes the first step to unifying, does it? If it does, you're part of the problem. Get off the horse and START.

What does that look like?

Cyriluse: Dropping attitudes for one. Thinking one is better than the other for any of the divisions mentioned above. Acting like you were personally hurt because of one political party or another. Stop listening to media outlets that keep the divide going.

Where do you think we should start?

With the truth. The world is not "he said, she said." True claims can be verified.

Then, with liberation. People are hurt because our society is terribly, horribly unfair. Most people work their whole lives and never really own anything. Americans do not have the same opportunity or quality of life as people in more advanced nations. We require universal personhood, universal dignity, universal emancipation.

Americans are divided mainly because they are fighting for scraps. The more fair and workable an economy is, the less divided the society is. The divisions don't seem as important when everyone gets a great start.

Thanks for asking Cyriluse. We are already part of the solution, us moms just talking here. We should try to overcome our differences and come to mutual understanding. Then we can show everyone else how it can be done. :-)

1-11-21 10:32  •  Republicanism vs. Trumpism

Jymmy: After Trump, who do you think will be the next Republican nominee for president?

HelloDolly: After Trump, do you think a Republican could get elected?

ND: I don't know.

Nazis didn't get too many votes after hitler.

*** general pandemonium ensues ***

Jymmy: How dare you!

Tanner: That was uncalled for. You've gone too far!

ND: Last week it was too far, maybe. Now they've ransacked the Capitol. Two officers are dead.

Jymmy: And you're going to compare that to the MILLIONS of Jews who lost their lives? Millions of men, women and children lost their lives. Houses, farms, everything destroyed throughout many countries, but yes... lets compare that to what happened a few days ago. They're totally on the same level. No...

They are exactly the same thing, one at the start and one at the end.

Tanner: So you believe it's ok to condemn a whole group of people because of a few idiots?

It's okay to condemn a whole group's ideology when it is bad. Anyone who doesn't want to be associated with that ideology can jump ship.

Tanner: What about Oskar Schindler? He was a member of the Nazi Party. Now he’s buried in Israel and has the title “Righteous Amongst the Nations”. Maybe if he had “jumped ship” many lives would’ve been lost.

Schindler did jump ship, secretly. He rejected the ideology. He worked against the Nazis.

Let's just say the time has come for Republicans to jump ship on Trumpism, and (unless they are literally keeping the secret to save lives) they are going to have to do it publicly.

1-7-21 10:00  •  Theories

GeminiDream: People have their theories that they believe. Some people believe in God, but that's no different than believing in the Big Bang Theory. Neither theory has been 100% proved.

I'm sorry, are you not aware of the concept of evidence? There are literally mountains of evidence that a Big Bang occurred. These are physical things that can be observed, like the way galaxies are being hurled apart from each other through space, and the microwave background radiation which is still all around us today. Ever seen an old TV, tuned in to no station? Some of the static you see on that screen is the echo of the Big Bang occurring. Or is there a more plausible explanation for such a tremendous echo of radiation?

Things are known about the big bang, like how long ago it must have occurred, and what particles and forces shook out and in what order and when, and what shape it gave to the early universe. It can be shown to have independent existence - this universe will keep Banging away long after humans are gone.

On the other hand, nothing is known of any kinds of gods. There is no, zero, not one tiny shred of evidence for "their" existence, or participation or concern for anything about this universe. No evidence. No knowledge at all. Nothing.

Are you suggesting that both of these ideas are just "theories," and nothing at all can be determined about whether they are accurate?

If so, you are mistaken. They are not equivalent.

1-7-21 7:23  •  Coming Together

Sharon: Now some guy is threatening ANOTHER march on the Capitol, this time until "blood runs from the building."

What a bunch of morons! It’s like watching “America’s Dumbest Criminals”. They go around feeling all so cocky and proud, and then start posting their threats on social media!

We can only hope all of Trump’s followers are this stupid.

That would be too easy.

Almost half of America picked this. Only the most extreme were at the Capitol, only the stupidest are plotting federal crimes on social media, but millions more voted for this. That's a lot of our neighbors.

And their target is understandable. There is so much suffering in our society and Trump didn't make it. Congress is the problem, or part of it, but not because of a "rigged election." It is because their job is to maintain our exploitation.

The only way to stop all the riots is to end the exploitation - for everyone.

Sharon: Uh...ok. I'm sorry you somehow feel "exploited" ... by Congress :-P

Congress maintains the system which is exploiting almost everyone, likely including you. It was conceived as a bicameral body to maintain slavery and exists today maintain the status quo. Perhaps you are comfortably high up in the socioeconomic strata, and will never have trouble affording college for your kids, or getting good healthcare, or a comfortable retirement. But you should know that most ordinary Americans are struggling for those things, just the basics of life, watching as costs and profits go up every year and wages stay flat. That is exploitation.

The way to end the suffering, to end the deprivation that causes riots, is to stop making laws that allow the 1% to exploit the rest of society. Congress does the exact opposite.

KS: We, as a nation, must find a way to come together rather than continue to fall apart.

There is only one way to do this.

We are not "falling" apart. We are being driven apart by deprivation. When almost nobody has enough, when millions can't even get the basics, divisions are widened as people fight for the scraps. A complex system of cooperation like democracy can't stand against it.

The only way to come together is with a better economic system. Letting the 1% have all the good in society is destroying democracy.

KS: Too many people vote against their own self interests. If people are having a hard time paying for college why did they vote for Trump? He had no interest in addressing this issue. If people are concerned about access to healthcare why are they so easily conned into believing healthcare for all is the first step to communism. Same with fair wages, if people are worried about having enough money to retire why not elect the person who would push for better wages.

The human brain is lazy and looks for quick, wrong answers. Many people believe they can't get college or heath care or real wages because of immigrants. Of course they vote for the guy who promises to deal with immigrants. GIGO.

KS: So many people were fooled into thinking Trump was for working class people and that couldn’t have been further from the truth. No healthcare reform, stagnant wages, no new programs to help working class with college costs, and tax breaks that favored the wealthy.

Yes, they were fooled by a demagogue, but he was the only one who even offered to address their suffering. The system is crushing them and he promised to smash it. The incrementalist tweaks of the Dems offer no real hope for change.

KS: People need to take responsibility for this mess that will take years to clean up and stop blaming the people we elected. Start by electing appropriate qualified people.

We can't solve this problem by electing "different" people. No matter who we elect, once they get into the system, into the same incentive structure, they deliver the outputs of the system. That's why even a bright, honest guy like Obama could change almost nothing.

You are right, it's on us, but what we need to demand are not "better" people. People are people. These same people would be much better servants of the voters in a better system. We need fundamental economic reform.

Sharon: I agree with the sentiment, United we stand, divided we fall. We’ve moved away from community to a focus on self that I don’t even think the word selfish accurately describes.

You are right, and this is a symptom of living in half a system that is concerned with economics only. Humans are both selfish and compassionate, but in this half-system we are taught to systematically activate only the selfish half of our psychology.

Advanced nations with whole systems are doing it better. They take care of the needs of people's lives, like education and healthcare and shelter for all. The way we come together is to make sure that everyone has the basics. Providing only for some just widens the divisions.

01-07-21 1:23  •  Important

Winnie: What in your opinion are the three most important things we could change?

We require universal personhood, universal dignity and universal emancipation (thanks, Umair Haque.)

Winnie: What does that mean?

Universal personhood means that everyone is a person. No more second-class citizenship for any person based on tribe, race, gender expression, etc. Every person is a full person deserving of all the rights and priveliges of that rank.

Universal dignity means an end to all forms of poverty. Every person needs a roof, a bathroom, food, healthcare and public services. A good society would make sure that no one has less than this.

Universal emancipation means that people can do what they want with their lives. They can study poetry or try iron sculpture or run for office if they want to. People should not be forced to toil unpleasantly just to pay the bills, while luckier scions choose uplifting work they like. Everyone should be free to pursue what they wish to pursue. Even if most people fail, some will succeed fantastically in ways they never could have if forced to toil. Their successes uplift the human race and make the freedom to try worthwhile for everyone.

Winnie: Oh. Good Luck with that!

Thanks, I'll need it.

Read more in the Archives.