The News

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Grossenschwamm, Dec 2, 2014.

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  1. Grossenschwamm

    Grossenschwamm Well-Known Member

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    I realized some time ago that reading the news just makes me angry. And so each subsequent time after that realization I've read the news, I've promised myself that I wouldn't go back to it. Having broken that promise for the fifteenth time this year, I can't even say what draws me to the news other than hoping "this next story isn't going to piss me off."

    It's actually a lot like my relationship with candy corn. It's alright at first, but then it quickly devolves into a strange grainy mess that seems desperate to convince me that I've actually put fondant and vomit in my mouth. Fighting the urge to put my own vomit into the mix, I choke down the candy corn and promise myself I'm not going to eat it again. Though I can rest assured that, due to my hopeful nature; the next time I see an unguarded dish of candy corn, I'll get that hopeful idea that perhaps this time I won't regret having taste buds.

    Really, I'm not sure what's worse about the news. Is it content, or that most major outlets are posting stories online, where people are free to comment on the given events? I get that literally everyone has their own opinion, and I'm not out to prove or disprove anything. Mainly because I'm so aggressively lazy.

    Two times yesterday I saw news stories posted by friends on my facebook wall that caused my rage switch to flicker. But I knew that while I could put time and energy into pointing out why it wasn't a good reason for Michael Brown to be shot in Ferguson, or spend time answering "20 questions liberals can't answer," I'd much rather do two loads of dishes while wondering; "When I answer those questions, does that mean I'm not a liberal?" Not that I'd readily identify with being either conservative or liberal, but I'd think anyone with common sense and a search engine can answer a list of questions on the internet.
     
  2. DarkFool

    DarkFool Nemesis of the Ancients

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    I've reached the conclusion I'm fiscally conservative and socially liberal. I did take the time to answer those questions for you.

    1) asinine question. It assumes either all republicans are Christians, or all liberals are Muslim, neither of which are true.
    2) please provide an instance where people were forced to provide those benefits at gunpoint, and the abstract idea that the IRS could raid you if you don't pay your taxes doesn't count.
    3) when was it said morals and character don't matter, and by who?
    4) at the very smallest amount (I.e: the highest tax bracket), I believe the amount is 65%, but realize that's 65% of a multimillion dollar paycheck.
    5) I've never seen any statistics showing this. Reaganism is proven to not work.
    6) yes, yes, and I'm a proponent of dismantling the Social Security System, so yes.
    7) no, because that's some of the unscrupulous business practices I oppose
    8) because most of that money is going into the endless black hole that is the military industrial complex, and not anywhere useful for recovery.
    9) republicans care about showy cash gifts to non-profits, then enact policies that hurt them.
    10) don't have the economic background to project, and wouldn't try.
    11) that hurts the little guy. The first people to suffer will be police, fire, mail, and other groups which receive federal funding.
    12) marriage is a legal contract with a ceremony involved. Your Gods definition isn't always pertinent. That said: polygamy doesn't work, simply because I don't think one person can ever fully love multiple people, and incest has sociological and medical implications.
    13) angled question: it's designed to deflect from the real issue: the top 10% paying a fraction of their annual income, and begging for loopholes to pay less.
    14) depends on the state? I know here you can counter use to have them pay for all legal costs from both cases.
    15) because of the number of times it's turned out that they were innocent.
    16) I oppose higher minimum wage. It's a stop-gap measure to try and fix a bigger pay-gap issue.
    17) the term is climate change, and whether or not you believe in it, using unsustainable means to build things is going to ruin our planet.
    18) ambiguous, slanted question. It's designed to tilt the responder to arguing from a disadvantaged point for big government.
    19) middle class isn't the problem. It's the rich not chipping in their fare share.
    20) because institutional sexism isn't that simple.
     
  3. Smuel

    Smuel Well-Known Member

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    I used to describe myself that way too, but the problem is that it sounds like a libertarian position. At least I consider that a problem. So now I say that fiscally I'm capitalist-socialist, and socially I'm liberal.

    Most of those questions are just playing with words though. You can turn some of them right around into Questions That Conservatives Can't Answer, such as "If you are pro-life, how can you be in favour of the death penalty?"

    Maybe don't read the comments? Actually, I think a substantial number of problems in the world are because a lot of people don't really have their own opinions about things, they are usually just saying something to try to fit in, or make themselves look cool.
     
  4. Grossenschwamm

    Grossenschwamm Well-Known Member

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    These all look like reasonable answers, but the questions are being asked unreasonably. Last night, around the time I posted this on T-A, I tried registering an account on that website to answer the questions. Registration had been shut down; I inferred from this that the people running the website want to keep their current level of incapable dissidents, rather than allow new people to come in and actually argue.

    Pretty much. What I noticed for nearly all of the questions is the only "right" answer is one that agrees with the asker's point of view. The entire article is "agreement porn" for conservatives that think liberals are mouth breathers.

    That's a very simple solution, and one I've thought up on my own. But I always find myself scrolling down for more news, and the comments are typically right below the extra links - if I start reading something, I'm compelled to finish it. I suppose that my solution is really "don't read the news."

    That's a fair point. A great deal of comments seem to be presented as flame bait. Then again, it's almost impossible to tell a real sentiment from someone simply trolling.
     
  5. Byzantine

    Byzantine Member

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    Hmm. You've given me something to think about. Thank you.
    Unfortunately, that's also how some politicians keep their jobs. Otherwise, one bit of personal input, and they could end up getting hounded out of their representing party like a leper.
    You've just summed up the likes of Bill O'Reilly and Bill Maher perfectly. Their respective shows (or bully pulpits, rather) are almost entirely "agreement porn".
    The problem is that few too many people actually care to read or listen to the viewpoints of other people on these message boards; that, and the anonymity of the Internet gives people the chance to speak out coarsely and inarticulately without the fear of any real consequence or rebuttal (and we've all been guilty of this, at some point). It just seems to me that the more sophisticated the technology becomes, the less sophisticated its users need to be. Just take a gander through Twitter.
     
  6. Grossenschwamm

    Grossenschwamm Well-Known Member

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    Re:

    It's funny you mention anonymity as a reason people are so dickish online - many people who don't comprehend what "sign up with Facebook" means are putting their names up alongside comments best left by a pseudonym, if at all.
     
  7. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    Re:

    No it fucking doesn't, you dick!

    Sorry, couldn't help myself.
     
  8. Philes

    Philes Well-Known Member

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    I know of all the things in this thread to respond to this might be unusual, but if you think a "conservative" can't answer this you really don't understand their position at all.

    The assumptions made of either side's views can be a problem for sure, and conservatives are just as guilty of this as liberals. Probably even more so.
     
  9. Byzantine

    Byzantine Member

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    Can't argue with that.

    [​IMG]
    Mmm. It feels like conservatives and liberals (or any two opposing parties, for that matter) spend more time, money, and energy trying to smear each other's reputations and perspectives as opposed to actually addressing their country's problems. It's probably much easier to do.
     
  10. TheDavisChanger

    TheDavisChanger Well-Known Member

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    How is this a problem?
    Not long ago I would have described myself as similarly disposed but the more liberal stuff I hear, the more I find I disagree with it. Anymore I would describe myself as a laissez-faire conservative: I think no matter what you're doing, you're probably doing it wrong and would be better served by doing it the way it has always been done, but you're welcome to do it just do me a solid and don't expect me to be impressed by it.

    What's the most outrageous story in the news these days?

    The grocery nearby is selling eggnog flavored candy corn. I do not recommend it.

    EDIT: Where the hell is the GamerGate thread? This isn't a proper forum without one.
     
  11. Grossenschwamm

    Grossenschwamm Well-Known Member

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    If you go to http://www.politicalcompass.org/, and look at 2012 presidential candidates, you're going to see something interesting - Obama and Romney are very close on a socioeconomic level, going by their voting records alone. As much as this is a single example, over time it's been demonstrated that, Republican or Democrat, both parties rule in the same way, while being extremely vocal about more superficial differences that allow them to relate better with their voting audiences.

    Granted, the "superficial differences" I mentioned happen to be things like same sex marriage and abortion laws. In this context, however, "superficial" happens to mean a hot note that neither side is going to really work on unless it can successfully distract from other issues being discussed that aren't as obvious.

    For example - people have been throwing a shit storm over the keystone pipeline deal. It seems the whole country has been sharting itself trying to argue for or against this gigantic oil straw, when we already have dozens of international pipelines going across the US and Canada. We have dozens more, when regional pipelines are included. I'm not saying "what's the big deal with one more pipeline," I'm just pointing out that people argue over this like we don't already have a metric fuck-ton of tubes running across the country, and apparently Keystone is the one that's too far.
     
  12. Smuel

    Smuel Well-Known Member

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    My point was that none of the original Questions Than Liberals Can't Answer are really sensible questions to ask in the first place, since they conflate unrelated issues and make unwarranted assumptions. This can be illustrated by easily turning some of them around into Questions That Conservatives Can't Answer. My example above was the turned-around version of question 15. I didn't think that it was really some clever bombshell that would stop people in their tracks. For question 18 it would be something like "We live in a world that is becoming more globalised and uniform. Shouldn't government mirror that trend by becoming more centralised?" Boom! Game over, conservatives!

    Because Libertarians are obviously wrong, so I'd prefer not to sound like one.

    "The way it has always been done" is a fantasy. Almost nothing has been done the same way consistently throughout human history. The one exception to this is that most people have always imagined that everything was better about 50 years ago. Today we idolise the nuclear families of the 1950s, even though most of the people in them were trapped and miserable, and were idolising the Victorians, who idolised the Georgians in their turn, and so on, all the way back, until you get to couple of grouchy stone-age guys complaining that everything was better before the invention of the wheel.

    This is particuarly hard to swallow, but I've recently come to believe it too, especially from a legislative perspective. I think it's more true these days than in the past though. They didn't have this problem about 50 years ago. Politics was much better back then.

    P.S. "Agreement porn" is my phrase of the month.
     
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