Trump presidency

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Zohar
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:57 pm UTC

ucim wrote:
Zamfir wrote:...Gun control advocates want to take away Edgar's hobby just to prevent...
Not just "Edgar"'s hobby, but lots of people's hobbies, and also the very idea that people can have dangerous tools as part of their hobbies.

You realize we already do this for a lot of things already, right? We regulate ownership of uranium and plutonium, I don't see any fighter jets for sale on Craigslist, and medications and drugs are regulated as well.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby The Great Hippo » Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:04 pm UTC

ucim wrote:That is exactly why police in the schools are a bad idea. A fight between twelve year olds should not become a police matter. I'm not even sure a student who has some weed should become a police matter. The damage done by making it (and pretty much anything else the school wants) a police matter is that children absorb the idea that, by default, they are not to be trusted, and must be monitored under arms. That continues into adulthood, where facebook gleefully provides the monitoring.

This is a Very Bad ThingTM, but it's also an externality that won't be seen for ten or twenty years, so is politically safe to ignore.

Jose
This is one of the biggest reasons why I'm opposed to guns on teachers as even a *mitigating* solution, yeah (well, this and the fact that it would result in more dead students and teachers). Having a gun -- one that is for both protection and, if necessary, *killing* your students -- having a gun to scare your students into not killing -- this fundamentally alters the student-teacher dynamic.

It teaches children important lessons early on -- they are not to be trusted. Guns = authority. The people who are charged to instruct and guide them are also charged with killing them if they step out of line. And the reason they shouldn't kill is because we'll kill them if they do.

It turns the classroom into a prison and the teacher into its guard. These are not lessons you want children learning. Even suggesting this as a viable way to address the problem disgusts me -- and demonstrates profound ignorance regarding the duty of a teacher to their students.

This is probably not surprising, but I don't think Trump understands what asking teachers to arm themselves against their own students *really* means.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby elasto » Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:18 pm UTC

In addition, I read an article about how school mass-shootings are a relatively recent phenomenon. Up until a couple of decades ago it was basically unheard of for a pupil or ex-pupil to go shoot up a school; However, there was a history of teachers shooting up schools which basically petered out (only to eventually be replaced by pupils doing so).

The suggestion from the article was that if we reintroduce armed teachers, we might cycle back around to the previous 'fashion'...

As ucim says, the focus rather more needs to be on why some people feel the need to go out in a blaze of glory in such a way when it doesn't seem to happen anywhere else - otherwise even if schools were somehow magically secured, people will just shift to mowing down concert goers (ala Vegas) or driving trucks through pedestrian areas (ala Paris)...

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:22 pm UTC

...because killing a dozen people is a guaranteed way to get your picture in every newspaper in the country for a few days? It's really not difficult to understand both the problem, Herostratic Fame, and the solution, media that doesn't give the murderer the time of day.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby elasto » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:01 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:...because killing a dozen people is a guaranteed way to get your picture in every newspaper in the country for a few days? It's really not difficult to understand

You are missing my point. School shootings are essentially a US phenomenon despite being a guaranteed way to get your picture in every newspaper in any country.

The US appears to be 'special' in this regard. Why?

(To give an example of an theory some put forth: The US has very high rates of psych medication handed out compared to most industrialised countries, and a very high proportion of such shooting sprees are carried out by people on medications such as anti-depressants. Maybe there's a link there?)
Last edited by elasto on Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:17 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:17 pm UTC

elasto wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:...because killing a dozen people is a guaranteed way to get your picture in every newspaper in the country for a few days? It's really not difficult to understand

You are missing my point. School shootings are essentially a US phenomenon despite being a guaranteed way to get your picture in every newspaper in any country.

The US appears to be 'special' in this regard. Why?


The cause of school shootings is in part school shootings. It's a trope that is LEARNED. Acid was always easy to get, but British acid attacks only took off when people learned you could use it to win a free moped. Large crowds were always vulnerable to truck rammings, but only after people learned about them being effective did they become an issue.


As for guns and school shootings? Well, it depends. The planned murders? Gun bans make the planning a bit more difficult, limits the options, but if you really want mass murder you can still make pipe bombs or get a hold of a truck or the like; just be glad the mass murderers never did well in chemistry class, because my high school chem lab did have enough in stock to do a fuckton of damage. But like suicides, many murders are NOT carefully planned, and those are the murders that would be stopped if the "instant massacre, add shooter" objects were less readily available.
Last edited by CorruptUser on Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:28 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby idonno » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:20 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:
idonno wrote:School shootings are major tragedies where they happen but they cause a trivially low deaths count per year. It would take a negligible rate of accidents from teachers' guns to overcome any possible good this could do.

That works directions, doesn't it? Gun control advocates want to take away Edgar's hobby just to prevent a trivially low number of deaths every year.

Yes. Anyone arguing for pretty much any non trivial action using only school shootings as justification is wrong but arguing for a non trivial action with a high probability of causing accidental deaths is just idiotic.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby elasto » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:28 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:The cause of school shootings is in part school shootings. It's a trope that is LEARNED.

Erm, you're repeating the point I just made - that there was a run of teachers shooting up schools, then that petered out, and now there are loads of students shooting up schools. Obviously it's a trope.

The question is why is the US such an outlier with people seeking to go out in a blaze of glory killing people. Switzerland has equivalent rates of gun ownership but there are no equivalent mass-shootings there, for example.

People kill people everywhere but it's rarely as nihilistic as in the US. When there are mass-killings, if it's not to consolidate power it's to further an ideology. The types of killings found in the US are almost unique in the West.

The question is why? Some put it down to an over-reliance on drugs to treat mental illness, say.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:34 pm UTC

We agree that it IS a trope. Let's skip the part with the arguing of whose mother had lower standards of sexual partners.

Again I'm repeating myself. It's a self fueling trope. The school shootings cause more shootings. Let's say the Lizard People staged a few dozen school shootings in France, and all of them got on the news the way they were in the US, then the Lizard People slithered away. The next few years would see more school shootings in spite of the Lizard People being gone.
Last edited by CorruptUser on Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:37 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ucim » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:35 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:You realize we already do this for a lot of things already, right?
Yes, and not always the right way. In general, inherently dangerous (to enough others) things should be restricted to those with appropriate training, so that they know how to operate them. You actually can buy fighter jets if you like (just not the weaponry). And one of the reasons medications are regulated is that most people can't resist the advertising that would naturally come about otherwise. (Medical ads were once prohibited for this reason).

But the country is founded on the idea that government needs to be resisted lest it breed tyranny. If you don't think we're actually in danger of despotic rule, look who's in the White House. Disarm at your peril.

That said, (and I still think we have a 90% chance of getting through this with a functioning democracy), the issue isn't that psychopathic killers have access to dangerous tools... that will always be the case. Take away guns and you still have gasoline. The issue is that we have psychopathic killers.

Why do we have psycopathic killers? Answer that and you've solved the problem.

CorruptUser wrote:...because killing a dozen people is a guaranteed way to get your picture in every newspaper in the country for a few days?
...and why is that attractive, to the point of committing mass murder?

People's willingness to commit mass murder is the problem, not their ability to do so.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:40 pm UTC

Because they want to be famous? Not that hard to understand. A few things can alter that desire, e.g., a religion where you believed yourself immortal so long as your name was still spoken, but it's not really fixible; you will never create a society where everyone is famous.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:56 pm UTC

EdgarJPublius wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:The majority of suicides occur while under the influence of alcohol and/or benzo...thing. Suicides themselves are more of a spur of the moment thing rather than planned, though planned ones do happen. So, do you plan to restrict alcohol and benzothingies more than they already are?


No more than I plan to restrict guns or anything else. Substance abuse is just another symptom generally.

Substance abuse is another symptom, but getting people the proper care and assistance is the way to handle that. Restricting guns to prevent suicide is like restricting Corvettes to prevent speeding. If someone wants to do it, they have options.


As a side note: Maybe the general gun control and mass shooting topic should be split to another thread, and specific Trump-related gun control conversation kept here?
Last edited by Yablo on Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:59 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby elasto » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:57 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Because they want to be famous? Not that hard to understand. A few things can alter that desire, e.g., a religion where you believed yourself immortal so long as your name was still spoken, but it's not really fixible; you will never create a society where everyone is famous.


You don't think there are people everywhere that want to be famous? You think mass-shootings in the US don't make the news elsewhere in the West?

You mention acid attacks being a similar trope in the UK, but I don't think that's true at all. They come in basically two categories: Either people (overwhelmingly asian) performing revenge attacks on ex-girlfriends, or as part of a robbery. The motivations, reprehensible as they are, are quite comprehensible - and definitely don't occur in the normal native population like mass-killings in the US do.

Sorry, I don't think you have got to the root of the explanation. If you want my gut feeling I think it's down to the unique strain of individualism and entitlement in the US vs somewhere like continental Europe which is much more based around extended families deeply involved in each other's lives, even now. The formal and informal support structures are much stronger.

Yes, there is an element of a desire for notoriety in the killings in the US, but if there weren't such a feeling of abandonment by family and society I think it would not rise to the level of needing to kill to obtain it.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:01 pm UTC

BTW, you know who worked in a public school and had a conceal carry permit? Philando Castile. So yeah, still not sold that giving more guns is a good idea.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:05 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:BTW, you know who worked in a public school and had a conceal carry permit? Philando Castile. So yeah, still not sold that giving more guns is a good idea.

And you may very well be right. Still, what we have now is not working, and that's a potential solution. It's a debate that's far past time the U.S. had. I highly doubt there are any solutions that will address every problem and concern, but there is a better system out there.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:06 pm UTC

elasto wrote:You mention acid attacks being a similar trope in the UK, but I don't think that's true at all. They come in basically two categories: Either people (overwhelmingly asian) performing revenge attacks on ex-girlfriends, or as part of a robbery. The motivations, reprehensible as they are, are quite comprehensible - and definitely don't occur in the normal native population like mass-killings in the US do.



You are missing the point. It's LEARNED. Acid was always widely available, but it's because acid attacks were so prevalent that people had the idea "hey I'm going to throw acid", so the attacks spread.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Sableagle » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:11 pm UTC

ucim wrote:
Sableagle wrote:...people get to go to school without anyone coming into the school and shooting at them...
...people get to go to school without anyone coming into the school wanting to shoot at them...

The problem is the psycopaths. Why do we have so many psychopaths?

Sableagle wrote:and it's exacerbated by a culture in which The HeroTM Saves The WorldTM with a handgun.
Yes, but even this doesn't go back far enough. Why is this a trope?
Well, it is a country built on land stolen from other tribes by Men With Better Guns, isn't it? We are not so different from our cousins, after all. It could be the heavy use of Ritalin to maintain order ... and isn't that a holdover from religious domination and control? It's a country founded by people fleeing the open-minded, liberal progressiveness of Victorian England, searching for a place they could be uptight, strait-laced and traditionalist, isn't it? Who's less tolerant of dissenting young voices than a religion? Ritalin's there to silence those voices and make the choirboys conform to the faithfully-transcribed songsheet. Given "Thou shallt beat upon the unbelievers, that they cower before thee, and take their stuff" as a tenet of a religion, the idea that The West Was Won (with God-given guns) in a Righteous StruggleTM would be very useful to the religious authority wanting to claim that their sovereignty over all the land and all people in it was Manifest Destiny*.

Could there also be a connection to capitalism? Put down the flaming torches, guys. I have data.

No, I'm not holding a member of Star Trek bridge crew hostage. I have numbers:

Murder rate against income inequality, with GDP/capita shown by blob size so larger blobs are richer countries:
GMWT3.png

Azerbaijan is way off to the left; the three to the far right are, bottom to top, Namibia, Botswana and South Africa; the enormous yellow blob halfway across the European group is Luxembourg; the UK is at 34.6, 0.435, distinctly right of Luxembourg; the US is the big green blob at 41, 6.41; Russia is the yellow way above the others at 41.4, 22.1; the only other blob up there in the 60-80 band with South Africa is Cote d'Ivoire; the four below that are Burundi, DRC, Angola and El Salvador and there seem to me to be an upward spread in the yellows, and upward curve in the greens, an upward trend in the blues and overall a positive correlation between income inequality and murder rate ... and between "not being in western Europe" and murder rate.

*
Spoiler:
America’s indigenous people are still fighting a centuries-old racist ideology

To truly appreciate the weight of this victory, it is worth illustrating a key concept in the history of the US’s dealings with its indigenous peoples. For hundreds of years now, it has repeatedly and almost without exception sacrificed their rights in the name of progress. This is underpinned by an especially pernicious ideology: “manifest destiny”.

While the origins of the phrase are disputed, the idea behind manifest destiny is relatively simple: white Americans have the God-given right and duty to spread their values and way of life across the continent and beyond. As historian Reginald Horsman noted, this phrase was merely the articulation of an ideology that had long driven the actions of European colonisers.

In the first year of his presidency, Andrew Jackson embedded this ideology into US government policy in the form of the Indian Removal Act (1830), officially endorsing the view that indigenous peoples and civilisation where incompatible:

{The act} will place a dense and civilised population in large tracts of country now occupied by a few savage hunters … {i}t will separate the Indians from immediate contact with settlements of whites … retard the progress of decay … and perhaps cause them gradually, under the protection of the government … to cast off their savage habits, and become an interesting, civilised, and Christian community.


Although resistance to these policies was and remains both significant and successful, recent research reveals that the idea still persists at the core of many US schools’ history curriculums, which exclude the historical and contemporary contributions of indigenous peoples (as well as other non-white Americans). As this history teaches it, Euramericans more or less own the US’s past.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby freezeblade » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:35 pm UTC

Ok, off the gun control issue, which really seems to be spiraling out of control (maybe needs to be moved to the relevant thread?)

Mueller Files new charges against Manifort and Gates: 32 new charges involving fraud and money laundering.

I'm thinking prosecuting this white house will be like taking down the mafia, follow the money, it's easiest to prove on paper. Especially when "collusion" may not even be a proper inditable crime at this time.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/22/us/p ... eller.html
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby The Great Hippo » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:41 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:And you may very well be right. Still, what we have now is not working, and that's a potential solution. It's a debate that's far past time the U.S. had. I highly doubt there are any solutions that will address every problem and concern, but there is a better system out there.
Sure -- but the President casually suggesting teachers be encouraged to bring concealed guns to the classroom (and receive training to use them effectively) is like suggesting fire-fighters strap cans of gasoline to their back before they rush into a burning building.

There are so many things wrong with this idea that even bringing it up suggests a critical failure to comprehend the scope and nature of the problem. We can't have a 'useful dialogue' over this approach anymore than we can have a 'useful dialogue' over the approach of throwing violent criminals into an arena and telling them whoever survives gets a pardon.

Had the President instead made a suggestion about, I don't know -- stationing one armed (and trained) personnel in at-risk schools -- then we could have a dialogue about that. That's an idea where we can reasonably disagree without me feeling as if I'm speaking to a lunatic.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:48 pm UTC

It's not "firefighters carry cans of kerosene" stupid, it's the kind of stupid we'd expect of toddlers. No toddler will say "if fi-ah fi-tas cawwied gas, dey put out fi-ah bettah". But a toddler would say "if tea-cha had a gun, she could pwo-tek us". We could tell the toddler that it wouldn't work, and if it's a 3rd grader saying it was could explain just why it was a bad idea.

But that's what we have. POTUS is now President Overgrown Toddler Uttering Stupidity.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ucim » Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:04 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:[People are willing to commit mass murder b]ecause they want to be famous? Not that hard to understand.
It's hard for me to understand, and it's rather scary that it's easy for you to understand. In my world, wanting to commit mass murder has a high barrier, and being famous just doesn't make it. There has to be more.

I see it as seething anger and frustration coupled with powerlessness and a sense of complete irrelevancy to the world around them. That, to me, would explain mass murder. That is the target we need to aim for. It is what led to Hitler, it is what led to Trump, and it will lead to massacare if we're not careful. Remember, Trump was the one that said there's "not enough violence anymore" (referring to sports, but still...).

Sableagle wrote:Well, it is a country built on land stolen from other tribes by Men With Better Guns, isn't it?
Every country in existence is like that.
Sableagle wrote:Murder rate against income inequality, with GDP/capita shown by blob size so larger blobs are richer countries:
I don't see a case for income inequality leading to violence. I see relatively flat spread with a handful of outliers in the middle and one blue dot in the upper right. Perhaps mildly suggestive of the idea that income inequality fosters murder in order to maintain the imbalance, but much more data would be required to tease out a causation from this weak-seeming correlation.

Jose
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:06 am UTC

freezeblade wrote:Ok, off the gun control issue, which really seems to be spiraling out of control (maybe needs to be moved to the relevant thread?)
Mueller Files new charges against Manifort and Gates: 32 new charges involving fraud and money laundering.
I'm thinking prosecuting this white house will be like taking down the mafia, follow the money, it's easiest to prove on paper. Especially when "collusion" may not even be a proper inditable crime at this time.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/22/us/p ... eller.html

Collusion is hard to prove, but obstruction of justice is much easier. It's still hard to indict a sitting president, (the default assumptions in the constitution is to impeach him or don't vote for him). I think it's odd given that there are plea deals in the works.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Dauric » Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:16 am UTC

The school shootings may be a recent phenomenon in specific, but the condition has been a part of humanity for... well frankly who knows how long, but has been recorded for at least the better part of three centuries.

Wikipedia entry on Running Amok

An early Western description of the practice appears in the journals of Captain James Cook, a British explorer, who encountered amok firsthand in 1770 during a voyage around the world. Cook writes of individuals behaving in a reckless, violent manner, without cause and "indiscriminately killing and maiming villagers and animals in a frenzied attack."[12]
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby DaBigCheez » Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:33 am UTC

Yablo wrote:Still, what we have now is not working, and that's a potential solution.

I am inherently suspicious of any arguments that boil down to "We should do something. This is something. Therefore, we should do this."
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ObsessoMom » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:51 am UTC

TL;DR: Republicans cherish the idea--still just theoretical to many of them, but very realistic to others among them--of ordinary citizens being able to stage an armed revolution in the name of freedom, much like the one George Washington led. And nowadays, you need at least semi-automatic weapons to have a realistic chance of overthrowing the government here.

* * *

The reason Republicans refuse to consider outlawing AR-15s is this:

A lot of their rhetoric in defense of the Second Amendment emphasizes the possibility of citizens using their private arsenals to overthrow a tyrannical government. After all, if the last successful revolution here, in the 1770s, was an example of Great People and Great American Patriots Doing the Right Thing, why wouldn't the next armed revolution be equally patriotic? (Especially since that unsuccessful little 1861-1865 insurrection keeps getting characterized that way, too.)

Think I'm exaggerating about their revolutionary fantasies, and their perception of Democrats as tyrants who must be defeated in the name of freedom? Well, you don't have to take my word for it.

Guess who gave a fiery speech today at the Conservative Political Action Conference, railing against the Democrats' dastardly two-pronged plan to enact gun control and install "European-style socialism" in the U.S.? Wayne LaPierre, the National Rifle Association's executive vice president and CEO.

LaPierre, who was not listed on CPAC's official schedule, accused Democrats of making gun control a political issue in order to achieve their ultimate goal to "eradicate all individual freedoms."

"What they want are more restrictions on the law-abiding — think about that," LaPierre said. "Their solution is to make you, all of you, less free. They want to sweep right under the carpet the failure of school security, the failure of the family, the failure of America's school systems and even the unbelievable failure of the FBI."

[...]

"I hear a lot of quiet in this room, and I sense your anxiety," LaPierre said, turning to the political consequences of the debate. "And you should be anxious, and you should be frightened. If they seize power, if these so-called 'European socialists' take over the House and the Senate, and God forbid they get the White House again, our Americans freedoms could be lost and our country will be changed forever." (Link to NPR article)


Onetime Republican presidential contender Ted Cruz weighed in, too:

When Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, took the stage later Thursday afternoon, he dismissed calls for new gun control measures in the wake of the Parkland shooting. Before the CPAC crowd, Cruz derided CNN's town hall on Wednesday night with some of the survivors as an "infomercial," and said the predictable calls for new restrictions were "tiresome."

"Every time you see a horrific crime, people in the media and Democratic politicians always try to leap on it to advance their agenda," which is to try to "strip the Second Amendment rights from law-abiding citizens," Cruz said.


And of course Trump had something sycophantic to say:

Ahead of the NRA leader's speech, Trump tweeted his support for LaPierre and others in the organization, calling them "Great People and Great American Patriots" who will "do the right thing."


How very reassuring.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Quercus » Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:30 am UTC

The whole defense against tyranny argument seems really odd to me, I support it in principle, but focusing it so heavily on the ownership of small arms seems to me a curiously ineffective way of actually mounting such a defense in the modern world. I suspect that it's more to do with gun ownership being easy and fun than an actual considered plan for such a defense. Otherwise you would see a hell of a lot more focus on campaigning for improved education with a focus on critical thinking and the questioning of authority, a demileterised police force, a robustly independent judiciary, a curtailment of the over-reachy bits of the president's pardon power, reduced use of digital surveillance and the maintenance and free use of robust digital encryption.

At the more extreme end, once you're in an actual shooting war with your own government the availability of small arms somehow never seems to be the limiting factor when this happens around the world.

The argument seems to be focusing on one of the least important pieces of the puzzle and pretending it's the
only
important bit.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:37 am UTC

Quercus wrote:Otherwise you would see a hell of a lot more focus on campaigning for improved education with a focus on critical thinking and the questioning of authority, a demileterised police force, a robustly independent judiciary, a curtailment of the over-reachy bits of the president's pardon power, reduced use of digital surveillance and the maintenance and free use of robust digital encryption.


Yet oddly enough, a lot of the people who just love their guns take the opposite stance to many of those things. Not all of them, some are unhypocritical libertarians who stand by all of those. But a lot of your mainstream Republicans love authority and militarization, at least. So long as it's their side with the authority and they are the military, I guess?
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby duodecimus » Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:34 am UTC

Its been three pages, probably should have a thread split on guns.
Spoiler:
Anyone else see the irony in the current government ignoring calls for discussion of gun control in order to ensure that the populace has the ability to rise up against their government if they do not reflect the opinions of the people?

I mean, really? Isn't the naive takeaway here that the people should use their guns to rebel against the government, so that they can establish stricter laws for gun control?

The hell is this situation?


Follow up to that: I'm Canadian and have never seen a magazine gun in real life: What is the actual process to buy an Assault rifle? Because that 'intensive background check+well kept records and military training course' thing the Swiss have going on seems a no-brainer to me.

And if you do have that, what gun control laws are you trying to see passed? Its not like you can just ban them, that wouldn't go any better than the war on drugs: Guns(drugs) are really great if you want to kill a bunch of people(get high) but there are always other options.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby idonno » Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:08 pm UTC

Quercus wrote:The whole defense against tyranny argument seems really odd to me, I support it in principle, but focusing it so heavily on the ownership of small arms seems to me a curiously ineffective way of actually mounting such a defense in the modern world. I suspect that it's more to do with gun ownership being easy and fun than an actual considered plan for such a defense. Otherwise you would see a hell of a lot more focus on campaigning for improved education with a focus on critical thinking and the questioning of authority, a demileterised police force, a robustly independent judiciary, a curtailment of the over-reachy bits of the president's pardon power, reduced use of digital surveillance and the maintenance and free use of robust digital encryption.


I suspect a non trivial percentage of the NRA membership distrusts public education and would view such a change as a means for them to work more opposition to gun rights into curriculums.

Since police forces are state and local, there is a good chance that a militarized police force might become an asset in a rebellion not a hindrance.

A "robustly independent" judiciary that can reinterpret the law to be unfavorable to them and ignore the legislators they have sway over?

How does the presidents ability to pardon interfere with a rebellion?

I think most people don't understand how big a deal digital surveillance and encryption really are. There is really no other way to explain things like Facebook.

Quercus wrote:The argument seems to be focusing on one of the least important pieces of the puzzle and pretending it's the
only important bit.
It is the bit that puts ability and responsibility directly in their hands rather than relying on some other entity to fix everything.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Liri » Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:32 pm UTC

ObsessoMom wrote:A lot of their rhetoric in defense of the Second Amendment emphasizes the possibility of citizens using their private arsenals to overthrow a tyrannical government. After all, if the last successful revolution here, in the 1770s, was an example of Great People and Great American Patriots Doing the Right Thing, why wouldn't the next armed revolution be equally patriotic? (Especially since that unsuccessful little 1861-1865 insurrection keeps getting characterized that way, too.)

I mentioned to a Californian friend yesterday that I only saw four confederate flags on the drive between Chapel Hill and Charlotte and she was shocked that one would see any at all. It is no wonder that the NRA has been so successful in developing and maintaining that narrative - "It almost worked last time!" Reminders that the war of northern aggression never ended are a constant, here (outside of the Triangle region and other cities). And NC isn't even in the deep south.

Catching LaPierre on tape saying that it was all to sell more guns and ammo would be tasty, but I doubt it would convince true believers.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Sableagle » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:43 pm UTC

ucim wrote:I see it as seething anger and frustration coupled with powerlessness and a sense of complete irrelevancy to the world around them.
Sableagle wrote:Murder rate against income inequality, with GDP/capita shown by blob size so larger blobs are richer countries:
I don't see a case for income inequality leading to violence. I see relatively flat spread with a handful of outliers in the middle and one blue dot in the upper right. Perhaps mildly suggestive of the idea that income inequality fosters murder ...
... or fosters the impression among the poor that they have "nothing to lose, everything to gain, outta my head in the pouring rain," which in turn takes away the fear of losing all your hard-earned wealth and status by getting yourself jailed. To keep this on-topic, what effect on a broke rural worker's or ex-steel worker's willingness to shoot at the relatively rich city folks he blames for his situation has Trump boasting about having robbed everyone in the whole country by cheating on his taxes? Sure, they have to dissociate "The Trump they elected" from "The thieving, smug, egocentric New Yorker born with a silver spoon in his mouth" along the way, but they've proven themselves good at that by voting for him.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Zohar » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:47 pm UTC

Aren't most of these shooters coming from more-or-less middle class backgrounds? I don't remember a narrative of them being particularly poor.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Sableagle » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:56 pm UTC

That's murder rate in general, not frequency of mass shootings at school.

Channel 4 have kindly FactChecked a relevant question:
Do black Americans commit more crime?

Some criminologists think we could be simply confusing race for poverty or inequality: black people tend to offend more because they tend to be more disadvantaged, living in poorer urban areas with less access to public services, and so on.

If you control for deprivation, people of different races ought to be similarly predisposed to commit crime. Or that’s the theory, at least.

There is a lot of research in this area, but a lot of it is contradictory.

This study of violent crime in deprived neighbourhoods in Cleveland, Ohio, found that reductions in poverty led to reductions in the crime rate in exactly the same way in predominantly black and white areas, suggesting poverty, not race, is the biggest factor.

Other studies get different results.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby freezeblade » Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:29 pm UTC

Breaking: Former Trump Campaign Aide Rick Gates pleads guilty to conspiracy and lying to investigators, making him the third member of trump's team to plead guilty to charges. Manifort has again maintained his innocence, saying he has no plans to "give up."

From the article:
In a statement of offense attached to the plea agreement, he admits he conspired with Manafort "in a variety of criminal schemes," including moving millions from offshore accounts without paying taxes on the money, which was disguised as loans.

He also admits he helped Manafort avoid registering as a lobbyist for Ukrainian political figures and misleading two other firms, the Podesta Group and Mercury Public Affairs, on whether they should register.

In addition, Gates admits that even while he was negotiating a deal with Mueller, he lied about a March 19, 2013, meeting attended by Manafort, a lobbyist, and Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, telling investigators that Ukraine had not been discussed when he knew it was.

Rohrabacher's press secretary said the meeting was a dinner with longtime acquaintances. "The three reminisced and talked mostly about politics. The subject of Ukraine came up in passing," the press secretary, Ken Grubbs, said.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/fo ... ty-n849256

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Liri » Sat Feb 24, 2018 2:05 am UTC

The lying to the FBI part after already being charged with other crimes is chuckle-worthy.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby elasto » Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:08 pm UTC

US billionaire Warren Buffet says his conglomerate has received a profit boost of $29bn as a result of President Donald Trump's tax reforms.

The Republican law reform, approved in December, cut the corporate tax rate to 21% from 35%. Mr Buffett, one of the richest men in the world, opposed the plan.

In his letter to investors, Mr Buffett said the tax cut accounted for nearly half of the firm's gain in net worth during 2017.
Non-partisan analysts had said the greatest beneficiaries of the tax package would be multinational corporations.

Last month Barclays, a British bank, predicted that Berkshire Hathaway would be a major beneficiary. It said that after an initial windfall, its earnings could continue to rise by 12% on an ongoing basis.


I suppose the Republicans aren't wrong when they claim this tax cut will produce economic growth but what will the societal consequences be from this ever growing inequality? Yet it's hard to see how this 'race to the bottom' won't continue when you have multinationals who can basically choose what regime to pay their taxes in...

link

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Sableagle » Sat Feb 24, 2018 10:48 pm UTC

elasto wrote:... what will the societal consequences be from this ever growing inequality?
Pitchforks?

Memo: From Nick Hanauer
To: My Fellow Zillionaires


You probably don’t know me, but like you I am one of those .01%ers, a proud and unapologetic capitalist. I have founded, co-founded and funded more than 30 companies across a range of industries—from itsy-bitsy ones like the night club I started in my 20s to giant ones like Amazon.com, for which I was the first nonfamily investor. Then I founded aQuantive, an Internet advertising company that was sold to Microsoft in 2007 for $6.4 billion. In cash. My friends and I own a bank. ... What sets me apart, I think, is a tolerance for risk and an intuition about what will happen in the future. Seeing where things are headed is the essence of entrepreneurship. And what do I see in our future now?

I see pitchforks.

At the same time that people like you and me are thriving beyond the dreams of any plutocrats in history, the rest of the country—the 99.99 percent—is lagging far behind. The divide between the haves and have-nots is getting worse really, really fast. In 1980, the top 1 percent controlled about 8 percent of U.S. national income. The bottom 50 percent shared about 18 percent. Today the top 1 percent share about 20 percent; the bottom 50 percent, just 12 percent. ... Unless our policies change dramatically, the middle class will disappear, and we will be back to late 18th-century France. Before the revolution.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Dauric » Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:06 pm UTC

Sableagle wrote:
elasto wrote:... what will the societal consequences be from this ever growing inequality?
Pitchforks?

Spoiler:
Memo: From Nick Hanauer
To: My Fellow Zillionaires


You probably don’t know me, but like you I am one of those .01%ers, a proud and unapologetic capitalist. I have founded, co-founded and funded more than 30 companies across a range of industries—from itsy-bitsy ones like the night club I started in my 20s to giant ones like Amazon.com, for which I was the first nonfamily investor. Then I founded aQuantive, an Internet advertising company that was sold to Microsoft in 2007 for $6.4 billion. In cash. My friends and I own a bank. ... What sets me apart, I think, is a tolerance for risk and an intuition about what will happen in the future. Seeing where things are headed is the essence of entrepreneurship. And what do I see in our future now?

I see pitchforks.

At the same time that people like you and me are thriving beyond the dreams of any plutocrats in history, the rest of the country—the 99.99 percent—is lagging far behind. The divide between the haves and have-nots is getting worse really, really fast. In 1980, the top 1 percent controlled about 8 percent of U.S. national income. The bottom 50 percent shared about 18 percent. Today the top 1 percent share about 20 percent; the bottom 50 percent, just 12 percent. ... Unless our policies change dramatically, the middle class will disappear, and we will be back to late 18th-century France. Before the revolution.


I find this amusing given the same party contributing to revolution-inspiring income inequality is also the same party supporting the arming of the populace with the explicit purpose of overthrowing the government.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby elasto » Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:15 pm UTC

Hmmm.

4-8 more years of tax cuts forcing cuts to services... the steady erosion of blue-collar jobs by automation and offshoring... the upcoming takeover of white-collar jobs by AI... and a country with more guns than people...

What could possibly go wrong..?

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Sat Feb 24, 2018 11:57 pm UTC

To quote Lenin, when it comes time to hang the capitalists, they will vie with each other for the rope contract...


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