Trump presidency

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Tyndmyr
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:06 pm UTC

bbluewi wrote:You're right, it doesn't explicitly say that, depending on your interpretation of the word right. (And of course, the founding documents of this country are remarkably vague, but that's another thread.) The definition I (and others on the left side of the spectrum) tend to use for "right" is something that all should have equal access to, such as the statement "health care is a human right." Following from that definition, the right to the pursuit of happiness would be "everyone gets access to the resources required to be able to look beyond basic needs and find fulfillment," which isn't something that happens in America right now (and to be honest, hasn't been for at least a century, since getting beyond basic needs became a "simple" enough task to not be fulfilling in and of itself).


It's the only one where they bother to spell out pursuit rather than simply enumerating the right itself. That indicates that they didn't think a guarantee of happiness was reasonable or practical. So, sure, everyone gets to pursue it.

The concept that everyone getting to pursue it is the same as an equal chance at winning is odd, though. Certainly not a historical viewpoint. You can certainly view it as including property, wealth and material success, as that's pretty consistent with usage at the time, but jumping from "right" to equality skips over the specific inclusion of pursuit. Guaranteeing pursuit rather than the goal is explicit acceptance of unequal results.

Disproportionate impact certainly wasn't doctrine at the time. Circumstances of individuals then varied immensely, and the use of this clause to suggest that we ought to have income equality or the like is definitely a modern invention. All in all, it seems a really strange basis of justification.

ucim wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:It's not merely an addictive property, as the poor also exhibit this behavior. One does not need to have millions of dollars to see the appeal in winning the lottery. If those who are not habituated to wealth still desire it, it cannot be "addiction".
"Not merely" isn't the same as "not". And what something appears to be is not the same as what it is.


Fine, if it's addictive enough to explain literally everyone who is wealthy, show me the research.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Thesh » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:09 pm UTC

ucim wrote:
Dauric wrote:The more primitive parts of the brain have a problem with the concept of "enough".
But the more advanced parts of the brain consider the future. Stockpiling for a rainy day is smart. It keeps you from becoming a burden to the state later in life. That is a virtue.


Not sure the relevance. The point is that unless you actually make a conscious effort to say "this is enough, I don't need more", you will instinctually just continue collecting more and more, regardless of whether it is actually beneficial. Your mind doesn't naturally do the math and determine exactly how much you need; it just assumes you can always use more.

EDIT:

So the problem with money is that everyone values money itself differently. I think if instead of asking how much something cost, you asked how much people were willing to work for something, you would see things vastly different. That is, the amount a person actually values something can be said to be the amount of work they are willing to do for it, and not the money they spend (unless the two are the same, which they aren't). Rich people aren't willing to do as much work for money, so we can say that they don't value it as much.
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ObsessoMom
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ObsessoMom » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:48 pm UTC

* * *

Organs are NOT as easily transferrable as money, due to immunological factors and variations in size and shape.

Organ redistribution is thus an unhelpful and inaccurate metaphor for wealth redistribution.

Please stop using that metaphor. It perpetuates unfounded anxieties on the part of potential donors.

Thank you.

* * *

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby LaserGuy » Mon Jul 16, 2018 11:02 pm UTC

Trump-Russia summit went so badly that even Fox News is giving him a hard time.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby bbluewi » Mon Jul 16, 2018 11:12 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:Trump-Russia summit went so badly that even Fox News is giving him a hard time.

Damn. You know you fucked up hard when your own propaganda mill criticizes you, although maybe Trump will spin it as "at least I scored a goal."

Odds on how many car chase videos Sean Hannity needs to show tonight? (For context, since I still can't post links yet, when the news first broke that Trump talked about firing Mueller as early as June 2017, Hannity spent breath saying "my sources haven't confirmed this, calm down" just to, later in the show, confirm it, say "you know what, we'll deal with this tomorrow night" and cut to showing a video of the ending of a high-speed chase.)

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ucim » Mon Jul 16, 2018 11:59 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Fine, if it's addictive enough to explain literally everyone who is wealthy, show me the research.
Thesh wrote:Not sure the relevance. The point is that unless you actually make a conscious effort to say "this is enough, I don't need more", you will instinctually just continue collecting more and more, regardless of whether it is actually beneficial.
I didn't say it explains literally everyone who is wealthy. I just said that it is addictive. Some people irrationally pursue money even in circumstances where it is to their detriment. But many people don't. They stop. They quit the rat race to paint, or run a hot dog stand.

Alcohol is addictive, but that does not explain every glass of red wine.

LaserGuy wrote:Trump-Russia summit went so badly that even Fox News is giving him a hard time.
I wonder how Americans will deal with the next president (if there ever is one)... the one that has to clean up this mess and make nice with our erstwhile friends. That's going to be a pile of entertainment too.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:29 am UTC

Thesh wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:was voicing my disagreement, not questioning popular agreement (which I didn’t realize you were asserting).

though not surprised to learn that as usual, most people are wrong.


Ethics and morals are social constructs, so "right" and "wrong" kiiinda goes by majority.


So, slavery was right because a majority agreed with it?


But a majority didn't agree with it so much as viewed it as a 'necessary evil', and I'm fairly certain the slaves themselves didn't agree to it. However, if a majority did agree to it, then yeah, it'd be "right" just as the overwhelming majority of people are opposed to it today therefore it's "wrong".

The overwhelming majority of people believe it's ok to eat animals. In the future when we have lab-grown beef for less cost than traditional farming, the majority will oppose the farming of animals. Morals change with society, and are often based on what the society is capable of rather than some sort of divinely revealed unchanging code.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Thesh » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:38 am UTC

Yeah, that's straight-up nihilism.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:38 am UTC

Which is what I am.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:44 am UTC

at least we know it’s safe to ignore your opinion now
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Thesh » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:50 am UTC

What if the majority is immoral?

See, I think morality requires some sort of consideration for others. People in power acting selfishly cannot be assumed to be acting in accordance to a moral code, and the majority is a group that is in a position of power because of their numbers. Slavery was supported by people in power who benefited from slavery - these people were not attempting to act morally, they were acting selfishly and then making excuses to justify it that they called morality. They did not debate morality and come up with a moral code and study it to see if there were problems or contradictions; people in power simply made rules first and foremost to protect that power, and told everyone else that those rules defined morality.

Moral realism is a thing.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:53 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
I think if you've embraced the idea of killing one to save five, the idea that the one guy is peacefully taking a nap isn't a big change. Many people are gonna pick the same answer for both.

[citation needed]

People very much don't pick the same answer for pulling the lever vs. pushing a guy off a bridge, so what evidence do you have that they'd generally pick the same with the guy taking a nap?

Edit: Also, can you point me to where anyone but you talked about trespassing? My understanding of the point was that however the lone guy on the alternate track got there, he's already in a dangerous place with a generally understood risk of possibly being hit by a trolley. Someone taking a nap and someone on a bridge over the track, on the other hand, are in safe places without said risk.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:11 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:at least we know it’s safe to ignore your opinion now


...I don't think you understand nihilism at all. Nihilism, much like Anarchism, is much, much more than just a bunch of anti-social assholes lashing out at the world and attaching themselves to whatever philosophy sounds the most anti-social.

Nihilism isn't the idea that nothing is moral or immoral and therefore we should be destructive, but the recognition that morality is created from Man rather than divinely woven into the fabric of the universe. And as morals are man-made, Man has the right to decide what those morals should be, and what those morals should be should be the morals that produce the society we want to live in.

This pretty much sums up my worldview

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Thesh » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:14 am UTC

What about extraterrestrials?

No, seriously, I agree, moral nihilists are not worth listening to. That's why Trump is President in the first place.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:18 am UTC

made up by man vs divinely woven is a false dichotomy, and both sides of that dichotomy end up telling you in effect to base your opinion on whatever it is that someone (yourself, some holy authority, a majority, whoever) says, regardless of reasoned consideration.

If it's not both possible to be objectively right and possible to be objectively wrong then there is no room for reasoning and without reasons opinions are worthless. Why should it matter what a majority, or some authority, or you yourself, think about anything? Maybe you have an answer to that question, but that answer will constitute a reason and it is on behalf of that reason that whoevers word carries any weight, not just because they said it and they're the ones who get to say, because they said so.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby addams » Tue Jul 17, 2018 2:11 am UTC

but that answer will constitute a reason and it is on behalf of that reason that whoevers word carries any weight, not just because they said it and they're the ones who get to say, because they said so.
That didn't make any sense.
Then I thought of Mich (the Turtle) McConnell
Then, it made a creepy kind of sense.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 2:14 am UTC

But it is possible to be objectively right or wrong. Sex education, objectively, is more effective at reducing pregnancies and thus abortions than abstinence only education. Slavery, objectively, reduces total wealth produced and in the long term, harms even the non-owning free class through opportunity costs and all (e.g., how many scientists and artists were we denied due to them having been born into slavery?). Helping developing nations advance through the various development stages, objectively, improves our own countries through access to more scientists and through less refugees.

We can and should be able to say that some actions help us achieve our goals and therefore are "moral", while other things hamper our goals and are this immoral.

What's not objective is what our goals should be.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jul 17, 2018 2:21 am UTC

We’re talking entirely about what our goals should be, not the means to reach those goals. If your only argument against a psycho who wants to hurt other people for fun would be either just to state your (and most people’s) disagreement with no reason to suggest your opinion is any more correct than his, or else just to point out ways that his plans are an inefficient means to his crazy sadistic ends, then you are basically incapable of making a moral argument at all.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 2:32 am UTC

...yours and others' objections and the collective might to enforce said objections. As for the right vs wrong in terms of murder, murder is immoral because it actively harms society for a myriad of obvious reasons, and would only be "right" in some weird society that actually did want to create some mass-murdering free for all, in which case you should get the hell out of that society regardless...

And it's not just "my goals are more important than your goals" I'm talking about, but the goals of society as a whole. Do we value individual liberties above all else, allowing people to partake of chemical pleasures regardless of how unproductive they become? Do we value security above all else, sacrificing privacy? Do we value health and longevity, proscribing unhealthy but otherwise popular foods? We are a democracy, and as a people, we decide what those goals are.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ucim » Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:26 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:made up by man vs divinely woven is a false dichotomy
No it's not. If it's divinely woven (which presumes the existence of the divine in the first place), then it cannot be "made up by man". If it's made up by man (and we assume man is not divine), then it cannot be divinely woven.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby addams » Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:48 am UTC

The conversations on this Thread are Way too complex for the Trump Presidency.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:55 am UTC


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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Thesh » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:10 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:And it's not just "my goals are more important than your goals" I'm talking about, but the goals of society as a whole. Do we value individual liberties above all else, allowing people to partake of chemical pleasures regardless of how unproductive they become? Do we value security above all else, sacrificing privacy? Do we value health and longevity, proscribing unhealthy but otherwise popular foods? We are a democracy, and as a people, we decide what those goals are.


As individuals, our morality should guide what these goals are. In practice, we don't all put much thought and consideration into our decisions and are manipulated by people in power for their own ends, and so you cannot say that the decisions of a democratic society are morally justified, nor can we say they are the informed and considered opinions of the majority. It's just a bunch of stuff that some people agreed to.

Morality can be argued based on actual principles of harm and the idea that all individuals are inherently equal. You can debate those moral principles, but they can be applied consistently to all aspects of society. Yes, there are conflicts, but we can use moral principles alongside sound judgement paired with understanding and consideration to resolve them. You don't need to defer to some arbitrarily selected authority to argue it.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:17 am UTC


538 says to wait for the polls to come out in a week. This weakness on Russia gives Democrats further openings, and it cuts against his brand as a strongman/truth to power type brand. Will it be a paper cut or a major blow to his presidency? Look for reactions among the mainstream republicans, and no McCain/Flake/Graham don't count. If it's just the never trumpers, then better luck next time. If it's widespread, watch Trump back down like a child.
Nate & co said that if Trump is smart, he'll make up another crisis to divert attention away from this bad photoop.

Noting hypocrisy doesn't get anywhere, despite how accurate it is. Instead, we can make bets about why Trump is so "weak on Russia".
A. There's a pee tape/compromat on Trump.
B. Manchurian/Siberian Candidate. He's a kgb agent/spy.
C. Trump loves Russia.
D. Trump is insecure about his own election.

All of these are bad for America, but for different reasons. B is the craziest, but sadly something we can't rule out. I hate that we can't rule it out. A. is possible, but unlikely to be pee. I'd bet on Russian dirty money propping up Trump's business network. C is weird, but has some backing when he talks of Kim, Duerte etc etc. Not sure how to rate this one. D makes a lot of sense, but feels incomplete. For one thing, Trump doesn't have to be this weak on Russia if he wants to remind everyone that he won the election fair/square .

Edit Claire brought up another possibility. Trump just agrees to whatever the person sitting next to him wants. So when he sits with Democrats, he sounds nice. Then he goes home where his staffers tell him otherwise, so he agrees with them. Then he shits on May, until he's sitting next to her, then he agrees with PM May.
Last edited by sardia on Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:41 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:26 am UTC

ucim wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:made up by man vs divinely woven is a false dichotomy
No it's not. If it's divinely woven (which presumes the existence of the divine in the first place), then it cannot be "made up by man". If it's made up by man (and we assume man is not divine), then it cannot be divinely woven.

A dichotomy means two options are exclusive and exhaustive (and a false dichotomy, thus, that something is falsely being presented as both exclusive and exhaustive). A famous false dichotomy that's almost on topic is "you're either with us, or you're with the terrorists" (GWB). You've just argued that they are in fact exclusive, and there I have no disagreement. But the gist of my post you responded to is that they are not exhaustive. It can't be both, true; but it could be (and is) neither.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ucim » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:29 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:A dichotomy means two options are exclusive and exhaustive [...] It can't be both, true; but it could be (and is) neither.
Yup - my mistake. Dang! That's my second one this year! :)

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Thesh » Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:52 am UTC

@sardia

I'd say that all of the above is a real possibility. Willing asset might be a better term than spy.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Quercus » Tue Jul 17, 2018 7:19 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:But a majority didn't agree with it so much as viewed it as a 'necessary evil', and I'm fairly certain the slaves themselves didn't agree to it. However, if a majority did agree to it, then yeah, it'd be "right" just as the overwhelming majority of people are opposed to it today therefore it's "wrong".


You're begging the question here - defining who has the capacity to contribute to a such a "moral majority" is in and of itself an act of individual moral judgement. Is it "all people", "all adults", "all adults without neurodivergence or mental health conditions", "all men", "all white men", "all white landowners", "all rich white landowners" or "kings and hereditary gentry"?

You can't decide what majority support is without first making a moral judgement on equality between people and how far that equality extends (to decide if and to what extent particular groups of people should be included in the tally to determine the majority).

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:54 am UTC

I'll believe any Republicans actually object to Trump on Russia when they stop mindlessly going along with the rest of the GOP every time they vote.

ucim wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:A dichotomy means two options are exclusive and exhaustive [...] It can't be both, true; but it could be (and is) neither.
Yup - my mistake. Dang! That's my second one this year! :)

It's a bit unorthodox to count years from Bastille Day, but you do you I guess.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Dauric » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:20 pm UTC

sardia wrote:C. Trump loves Russia.

<snip>

C is weird, but has some backing when he talks of Kim, Duerte etc etc. Not sure how to rate this one.


Armchair psychoanalysis, your mileage may vary:

Frontline: The Choice 2016
Watch between 00:11:00 and 00:18:00 for a summary of Trump's childhood. His father was a strict (and racist) authoritarian, and sent Trump to military school, where reportedly he 'thrived'. Putin and other dictator strong-men may remind him in part of his father and/or father figures (ie: military school drill instructors), and/or may give him nostalgic feelings for a time and place where 1960's Playboy inspired "Barracks Talk" was the norm. Multiple commentators (including one claiming to be quoting Trump himself) say that Trump has never really left the mindset of his childhood.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby addams » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:06 pm UTC

sardia wrote:A. There's a pee tape/compromat on Trump.
B. Manchurian/Siberian Candidate. He's a kgb agent/spy.
C. Trump loves Russia.
D. Trump is insecure about his own election.

E. All his Money for many years has come from Russia.
E. (a) Willing asset; Willing to remain Rich.


When the people of Scotland look at the finances of the 'club' there.
They see Millions and Millions going in, not much coming out.

That is a grave sign of Money Laundering
(sigh..) It is a rarely prosecuted crime.
The voting public sees it as So Clean.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:17 pm UTC

Quercus wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:But a majority didn't agree with it so much as viewed it as a 'necessary evil', and I'm fairly certain the slaves themselves didn't agree to it. However, if a majority did agree to it, then yeah, it'd be "right" just as the overwhelming majority of people are opposed to it today therefore it's "wrong".


You're begging the question here - defining who has the capacity to contribute to a such a "moral majority" is in and of itself an act of individual moral judgement. Is it "all people", "all adults", "all adults without neurodivergence or mental health conditions", "all men", "all white men", "all white landowners", "all rich white landowners" or "kings and hereditary gentry"?

You can't decide what majority support is without first making a moral judgement on equality between people and how far that equality extends (to decide if and to what extent particular groups of people should be included in the tally to determine the majority).

Spoiler:
Right or wrong, ultimately it was always those with power that decided what constituted the majority. Which is why we should not let power get concentrated into too few hands if we don't want to live in some sort of dystopia. Personally, I view it as "all sapients", or any organism (or mechanical creation!) capable of rational, intelligent, independent thought, for the as earlier mentioned possibility of alien life. Or perhaps a particularly intelligent dolphin or chimpanzee, if we ever get around to genetically uplifting them, or even a computer at some point in the future.

Note that moral nihilism isn't the belief that there is no such thing morality, only that the laws of morality are not like the laws of physics, in that they are not inherent in the universe. That morals aren't inherent in the universe doesn't mean there are no morals. Rather, it's the recognition that morals are a creation of man, and as such we, as a group, have the prerogative to choose the morals that we decide is best. Personally, for me, it was a rejection of Moral Relativism. Relativism has had the curious problem of never actually being practiced by its alleged adherents. Slavery is a good example. According to Relativists, at least meta-ethical Relativists, no group of people are objectively right or wrong when it comes to morals, yet virtually every last one of them finds slavery to be immoral in spite of other cultures practicing it. Infanticide used to be routinely practiced virtually everywhere, yet you'd be hard pressed to find a Relativist that would argue that if a society permits it they are no more or less right or wrong than our society.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:44 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Note that moral nihilism isn't the belief that there is no such thing morality,

It is actually. (Lazy cite: "Moral nihilism ... is the meta-ethical view that nothing is morally right or wrong"). Nihilism generally means literally "nothing-ism", and each specific kind of nihilism asserts that there is no such thing as whatever was specified, in this case morality. Maybe you're not actually a nihilist after all. (That Kurzgesagt video you linked earlier, despite its title, isn't really describing nihilism either, but something more like existentialism).
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:12 pm UTC

The discussion of utilitarianism and the trolley problem were at least still connected to politics, but the argument about moral nihilism is, as far as I can tell, totally disconnected from anything else in this thread and should thus probably be moved elsewhere?
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ObsessoMom » Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:41 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:The discussion of utilitarianism and the trolley problem were at least still connected to politics, but the argument about moral nihilism is, as far as I can tell, totally disconnected from anything else in this thread and should thus probably be moved elsewhere?


Yes, please!

Actually, the discussion of utilitarianism and the trolley problem should go to Serious Business, too. It's becoming increasingly difficult to find Trump presidency stuff in the Trump presidency thread.
Last edited by ObsessoMom on Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:51 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:48 pm UTC

I thought the utilitarianism and trolley problem stuff was equally off-topic. Also, with the whole post-truth politics thing surrounding Trump, there's a good argument to be made that nihilism is quite on topic there.

That said I do think all the abstract philosophical stuff would be best moved to another thread or dropped.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby ObsessoMom » Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:57 pm UTC

John McCain's full statement on the Helsinki Summit press conference is a thing of beauty.

TL;DR:

Today’s press conference in Helsinki was one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory. The damage inflicted by President Trump’s naiveté, egotism, false equivalence, and sympathy for autocrats is difficult to calculate. But it is clear that the summit in Helsinki was a tragic mistake.

President Trump proved not only unable, but unwilling to stand up to Putin. He and Putin seemed to be speaking from the same script as the president made a conscious choice to defend a tyrant against the fair questions of a free press, and to grant Putin an uncontested platform to spew propaganda and lies to the world.

[...]

No prior president has ever abased himself more abjectly before a tyrant.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby doogly » Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:08 pm UTC

ObsessoMom wrote:John McCain's full statement on the Helsinki Summit press conference is a thing of beauty.

Unlike his voting record
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby addams » Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:09 pm UTC

well....This may not be palatable to some.
One. One and only One of the Russians that seem to have been
working on our Elections is here and has been arrested.

Produced by The Media:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySZvUCFR4tk
(sorry about the preview advert. I can't make it go away.)

ObsessoMom wrote:John McCain's full statement on the Helsinki Summit press conference is a thing of beauty.
It is Not too long to read!
It is a Thing of Beauty.

I have had my 'differences' with Mr. John McCain, over the years.
I have respect for his courage and his measured, honest assessment.

(tisk...) Shakes head...
Like Dr. O. he is going to work every day of the rest of his life.
Last edited by addams on Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:39 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Quercus » Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:13 pm UTC

Yeah, you're right... Sorry I helped drag the thread off-topic a couple of times.

In on topic news, the Queen may have just had a dig at Trump through the medium of brooches.


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