3 of 4
3
Noam Chomsky, yea or nay?
Posted: 22 August 2008 01:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]  
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3765
Joined  2007-03-11
FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 05:05 PM

Who says people need to be restrained?  You let people truly be free and they will no longer need social restraint. 

  Crime is usually the cause of poverty and neglect.  Get rid of that and you come to a world much more free.

Have you ever heard of Genghis Khan?

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 August 2008 01:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]  
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1088
Joined  2006-10-09
FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 05:02 PM

Where is all this durn evidence about how human nature works only one way, huh?  Where is this amazing, breathtaking science of the mind?  There is none, merely the babblings of libertarians and Ayn Rand parasites.  Human nature, I got your human nature right here.

Who said it only works one way?  There you go with your false dilemma fallacies again.

But one thing which is, so far as we can tell, universally true, is that people always resolve their societies into hierarchies.  Always.

This is so universally true I think it is safe to say it is fundamental to human nature (and indeed animal nature—every social animal species seems to establish a pecking order).  Leaders and followers emerge.  Even in small communities where the social organization is “organic” as you describe will exhibit this.  De facto leaders will emerge, even if there aren’t any de jure ones—people to whom the rest look for leadership and guidance.

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 05:02 PM

  Social science knows little about human nature.  Actually, people have become better.  In the 60’s the military could carpet bomb Vietnam and the people didn’t much care.

Yes, the violent protests that racked the country were clear proof that people didn’t much care.

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 05:02 PM

Today, you cannot get away with that.  The people would not stand for it.  As culture changes people change.  We have to make a world where people feel better about the world.  Eliminating poverty is a big step in that.

Dream on.  Improvements are always possible.  But total perfection or total equality is not.  There are always going to be haves and have nots. 

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 05:02 PM

  Social structures take away freedom.  If we want actual freedom, we must have a world where people can control their own lives.

No one is entirely able to control his or her own life.  There are always going to be outside influences mitigating that control.  And certain restrictions are accepted—laws against murder, theft, rape, etc.—by virtually every human society that exists or has ever existed, because they are both necessary and desirable for the greater good, and we accept these restrictions because they are better than the alternative: a brutal “state of nature” where the weak have no defense against the strong.

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 05:05 PM

Who says people need to be restrained?  You let people truly be free and they will no longer need social restraint. 

  Crime is usually the cause of poverty and neglect.  Get rid of that and you come to a world much more free.

See above.  You will never eliminate it entirely.  And it still utterly fails to address what you are going to do about the human predators who exist among us.  Not all of them commit their crimes because they are poor.  Take, just as one example, the famous case of Leopold and Loeb, back in the 1920s, who were both from wealthy backgrounds, and both very intelligent, who committed a brutal murder out of nothing deeper than a simple desire to commit a major crime and “get away with it.”  It was a thrill killing, nothing more.  Poverty certainly doesn’t explain that.  Nor does it explain the wealthy executive who embezzles his company’s pension fund, leaving the retiring employees destitute, so he can line his own pockets, even though he’s already got enough money to live the life of Reilly to the end of his days.

Once again, you are taking a very black and white view of things, when the situation is far more complex.  It seems your entire anarchist ideology rests on a set of very facile, superficial assumptions, not all of which hold up very well under close scrutiny.

 Signature 

I am the very model of a Christian Evangelical
I’ve no need for courtesy when fighting things heretical
I know the bible word for word; you’ll find me pedagogical
I have my faith so I’ve no need for ideas that are logical
Atheists and Pagans fall before my wit satirical
They’ll burn in hell just as they should; their cries will be so lyrical
I’m always right, you’re always wrong, my reasoning’s dogmatical
For I’m the very model of a Christian Evangelical

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 August 2008 01:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]  
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3765
Joined  2007-03-11
Jefe - 22 August 2008 05:27 PM

I’ve heard of Kubla Khan.

Congratulations. There is yet hope for Canadian education.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 August 2008 02:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]  
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1646
Joined  2008-04-02

So Frankie, you are an anarchist who thinks “Hugo Chavez is da man.” Are you saying that Chavez is not an authoritarian? You also seem to want to help the poor. How are you going to ensure that the poor are cared for without a state? Do you really believe that everywhere people will just seek out the poor and miraculously take care of them? Man, I want a hit of whatever you are smoking.

 Signature 

Real honesty is accepting the theories that best explain the actual data even if those explanations contradict our cherished beliefs.-Scotty

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 August 2008 02:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  26
Joined  2008-08-21

The scary thing is that most of the people in this forum tend to be liberal but they do not know the history of the social structures. 

  Social structures were created by a guiding elite, what were known as “responsible men,” because they were afraid of the power of the public, whom Alexander Hamilton called “the great beast,” because he knew that popular movements can stop elites from taking over the country.  Popular movements that lead to women getting the vote, slaves being freed, labor unionizing, etc.  Ask Martin King about people power. 

  These social structures must be dismantled, because their authority is illegitimate.  They want to control what is called “the public mind.”  They can’t have mine. 

———————-

  Ask E.O. Wilson about hard wired evolution as well.

  We are not blank slates, some of our ideals are hard wired.  Goodness and solidarity can be hardwired into us as well.  We have to bring that out. 

  There are tribes that are found in the jungles, who work together and are peaceful.  Once they encounter modern society they become violent and more self serving.  Wonder where they learned that?

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 August 2008 03:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]  
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2927
Joined  2006-12-17
FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 06:58 PM

The scary thing is that most of the people in this forum tend to be liberal but they do not know the history of the social structures. 

  Social structures were created by a guiding elite, what were known as “responsible men,” because they were afraid of the power of the public, whom Alexander Hamilton called “the great beast,” because he knew that popular movements can stop elites from taking over the country.  Popular movements that lead to women getting the vote, slaves being freed, labor unionizing, etc.  Ask Martin King about people power. 

  These social structures must be dismantled, because their authority is illegitimate.  They want to control what is called “the public mind.”  They can’t have mine.

Frankie boy, you must still be very young.  Social structures existed long before the American revolution.  Actually, if you study anthropology, even the most primitive of human groups have social structures.  Baboons have them, indeed all social animals do.  And one aspect of social structures is hierarchy.  Whether this is formalized or not, it is always there.  Our modern structures are built on the tension between egalitarian beliefs and the natural tendencies for humans to organize into hierarchical systems. 

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 06:58 PM

  Ask E.O. Wilson about hard wired evolution as well.

  We are not blank slates, some of our ideals are hard wired.  Goodness and solidarity can be hardwired into us as well.  We have to bring that out. 

  There are tribes that are found in the jungles, who work together and are peaceful.  Once they encounter modern society they become violent and more self serving.  Wonder where they learned that?

There are also tribes that are violent.  Read Ruth Benedict’s book Patterns of Culture.  She gives one example of a primitive tribe where social relations are based on deceit and treachery. 

As for Goodness being hardwired, not quite.  What is hardwired (so, genetically determined and not available for change unless we get into major genetic engineering) is the instinct for self-preservation, an instinct for relating to others (because we need others to survive), and an instinct to orient ourselves in our environment.  How those manifest depends on our lifetime experience. 

If you really want to make a contribution to the spread of Goodness, first learn how to do it rather than just ranting about how messed up things are.

“You want to help people, first help yourself.  Then, if you have any time left over, you can help others.”  Georg Gurdjieff

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 August 2008 09:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]  
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1763
Joined  2006-08-20
burt - 22 August 2008 07:39 PM
FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 06:58 PM

The scary thing is that most of the people in this forum tend to be liberal but they do not know the history of the social structures. 

  Social structures were created by a guiding elite, what were known as “responsible men,” because they were afraid of the power of the public, whom Alexander Hamilton called “the great beast,” because he knew that popular movements can stop elites from taking over the country.  Popular movements that lead to women getting the vote, slaves being freed, labor unionizing, etc.  Ask Martin King about people power. 

  These social structures must be dismantled, because their authority is illegitimate.  They want to control what is called “the public mind.”  They can’t have mine.

Frankie boy, you must still be very young.  Social structures existed long before the American revolution.  Actually, if you study anthropology, even the most primitive of human groups have social structures.  Baboons have them, indeed all social animals do.  And one aspect of social structures is hierarchy.  Whether this is formalized or not, it is always there.  Our modern structures are built on the tension between egalitarian beliefs and the natural tendencies for humans to organize into hierarchical systems. 

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 06:58 PM

  Ask E.O. Wilson about hard wired evolution as well.

  We are not blank slates, some of our ideals are hard wired.  Goodness and solidarity can be hardwired into us as well.  We have to bring that out. 

  There are tribes that are found in the jungles, who work together and are peaceful.  Once they encounter modern society they become violent and more self serving.  Wonder where they learned that?

There are also tribes that are violent.  Read Ruth Benedict’s book Patterns of Culture.  She gives one example of a primitive tribe where social relations are based on deceit and treachery. 

As for Goodness being hardwired, not quite.  What is hardwired (so, genetically determined and not available for change unless we get into major genetic engineering) is the instinct for self-preservation, an instinct for relating to others (because we need others to survive), and an instinct to orient ourselves in our environment.  How those manifest depends on our lifetime experience. 

If you really want to make a contribution to the spread of Goodness, first learn how to do it rather than just ranting about how messed up things are.

“You want to help people, first help yourself.  Then, if you have any time left over, you can help others.”  Georg Gurdjieff

Good post Burt,

I think I am an anarchist only in the sense that I think that anarchy, globally speaking, is what we’ve got.

The social, political, and economic worlds go around not because we are forced into social, political or economic contracts with each other but because we develop and enter into them willingly. These adaptive relationships are made with the mutual recognition that the fulfillment of our self interest is a strong function of fulfilling the interests of others.

In 30 years of business, I can say that as a capitalist, I have always made my money by cooperating with my friends, not by arguing with my enemies. Note enemies are not the same as competitors. Enemies always cost. Competitors are marketplace companions, not enemies.

Perhaps, just as the Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao, so the order that is forced is not the adaptive order. Ultimately, the adaptive order is by definition the social, political, economic order to have. Order cannot be imposed, it can only be taken advantage of.

The “authorities” include all of the private and public criminals of the world and their instruments, the armies, the police forces and the gangs. These people, the cops and the robbers, constitute a parasitic, not commensal relationship. (the spell checker doesn’t even recognize the word commensal).

These parasites live off our moral shortcomings whether they are criminals like bush and the military/industrial/oil complex or some Italian or Saudi crime boss or some military general with stupid medals pinned to their chest to the soldier of fortune who will hire himself to the highest bidder. They are all the same. The energy we devote to them always represent a drain on the social, economic, and political “orders” that we have mutually evolved to get to where we are. Most of us are involved in making the world go around and in taking care of each other. These are adaptive behaviors. With any luck, we may culturally evolve to do away with energy sucking parasites. Though there are serious inimical influences in the world, we all waste most of our GNP on paranoia.

It’s gonna take some time. I don’t agree with FrankChurch that even our cultural evolution has moved much since we carpet bombed Vietnam. Us white folks for sure got a few more atrocities in us.

History is little use. If we pay attention to “history”, (a very cultural thing), then we are doomed to repeat it.
Repeating history, is what most of us do, most of the time. Very little “thinking outside the box”.
The only point in paying attention to history is to identify where we have gone wrong so that we may explore cultural design space for solutions that adaptively address “historical” problems. This is precisely how evolution occurs in technology. A supplier of mine, a German manufacturer, uses the slogan, “One must criticize good things to create perfection”.

Enough said.

[ Edited: 22 August 2008 09:08 PM by eucaryote]
 Signature 

The ants are my friends, they’re blowing in the wind, the ants are blowing in the wind.

Dog is my co-pilot

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 06:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]  
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1646
Joined  2008-04-02

Excellent posts by eucaryote and burt! Frank, how do you explain the French Revolution? Where was the love bro?

 Signature 

Real honesty is accepting the theories that best explain the actual data even if those explanations contradict our cherished beliefs.-Scotty

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 09:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  26
Joined  2008-08-21

Oh, you know what I meant.  I meant, structures of power, modern foundations of elite power. 

  See, you are trying to debate around the facts.  I got you guys figured. 

———————

 
  We are more decent.  At one time we tolerated hanging black people from trees.  I can show you pictures that would fry your hair.  Young kids with big grins on their faces, as black people are being burnt in a fire.  This happened in America!  Land of the free, home of the slave. 

  Women now have the vote, blacks can vote, beyond the whole stealing elections thing. 

  Reagan had to do his Contra terrorism in secret because the public would have been against it.  In the past this kind of terrorism was out in the open.  That time nobody gave a shit. 

  We are more decent.  Stable economies and treating people fair make people nicer.  This is why prisons are such shit holes.  People in Europe have less crime because of that fact.

  We know very little about human nature.  One day we will find out that morality is hard wired. 

  Hope is a good thing. 

———————-

  Thomas Frank has a new book where he shows how republicans destroy government, so that it will be corrupt and then funnel money to business.  These are the levels of morality you get from corporate elites.

  They steal, cheat and lie.  I trust the people.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 09:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  26
Joined  2008-08-21

If McCain were to admit out loud that people mostly act selfishly and for their own best interest and that it is why capitalism is so good, he would lose the election by a landslide.  Normal Americans hate power structures.  They are on my side.  Too bad they don’t know it—yet.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 02:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]  
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2927
Joined  2006-12-17
eucaryote - 23 August 2008 01:02 AM
burt - 22 August 2008 07:39 PM
FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 06:58 PM

The scary thing is that most of the people in this forum tend to be liberal but they do not know the history of the social structures. 

  Social structures were created by a guiding elite, what were known as “responsible men,” because they were afraid of the power of the public, whom Alexander Hamilton called “the great beast,” because he knew that popular movements can stop elites from taking over the country.  Popular movements that lead to women getting the vote, slaves being freed, labor unionizing, etc.  Ask Martin King about people power. 

  These social structures must be dismantled, because their authority is illegitimate.  They want to control what is called “the public mind.”  They can’t have mine.

Frankie boy, you must still be very young.  Social structures existed long before the American revolution.  Actually, if you study anthropology, even the most primitive of human groups have social structures.  Baboons have them, indeed all social animals do.  And one aspect of social structures is hierarchy.  Whether this is formalized or not, it is always there.  Our modern structures are built on the tension between egalitarian beliefs and the natural tendencies for humans to organize into hierarchical systems. 

FrankChurch - 22 August 2008 06:58 PM

  Ask E.O. Wilson about hard wired evolution as well.

  We are not blank slates, some of our ideals are hard wired.  Goodness and solidarity can be hardwired into us as well.  We have to bring that out. 

  There are tribes that are found in the jungles, who work together and are peaceful.  Once they encounter modern society they become violent and more self serving.  Wonder where they learned that?

There are also tribes that are violent.  Read Ruth Benedict’s book Patterns of Culture.  She gives one example of a primitive tribe where social relations are based on deceit and treachery. 

As for Goodness being hardwired, not quite.  What is hardwired (so, genetically determined and not available for change unless we get into major genetic engineering) is the instinct for self-preservation, an instinct for relating to others (because we need others to survive), and an instinct to orient ourselves in our environment.  How those manifest depends on our lifetime experience. 

If you really want to make a contribution to the spread of Goodness, first learn how to do it rather than just ranting about how messed up things are.

“You want to help people, first help yourself.  Then, if you have any time left over, you can help others.”  Georg Gurdjieff

Good post Burt,

I think I am an anarchist only in the sense that I think that anarchy, globally speaking, is what we’ve got.

The social, political, and economic worlds go around not because we are forced into social, political or economic contracts with each other but because we develop and enter into them willingly. These adaptive relationships are made with the mutual recognition that the fulfillment of our self interest is a strong function of fulfilling the interests of others.

In 30 years of business, I can say that as a capitalist, I have always made my money by cooperating with my friends, not by arguing with my enemies. Note enemies are not the same as competitors. Enemies always cost. Competitors are marketplace companions, not enemies.

Perhaps, just as the Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao, so the order that is forced is not the adaptive order. Ultimately, the adaptive order is by definition the social, political, economic order to have. Order cannot be imposed, it can only be taken advantage of.

Nice comparison.  The thing I think we have to worry about was captured in a lecture I heard 8 years ago or more.  Don’t recall the exact wording, but the gist was: “We are going to global unity, one way or another.  It can be a matter of free agreement, or by force but it is going to happen.”  And today we have such imperfect leadership, still for the most part thinking in us vs them mentality.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 03:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]  
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1088
Joined  2006-10-09
FrankChurch - 23 August 2008 01:35 PM

  We are more decent.  At one time we tolerated hanging black people from trees.  I can show you pictures that would fry your hair.  Young kids with big grins on their faces, as black people are being burnt in a fire.  This happened in America!  Land of the free, home of the slave. 

  Women now have the vote, blacks can vote, beyond the whole stealing elections thing. 

  Reagan had to do his Contra terrorism in secret because the public would have been against it.  In the past this kind of terrorism was out in the open.  That time nobody gave a shit. 

  We are more decent.  Stable economies and treating people fair make people nicer.  This is why prisons are such shit holes.  People in Europe have less crime because of that fact.

  We know very little about human nature.  One day we will find out that morality is hard wired. 

  Hope is a good thing.

None of this is indicative of an improvement in human nature.  It is indicative of improved conditions in which people live.  The crap going on in Darfur right now, or in Myanmar, where the ruling junta preferred to let large numbers of its own people die rather than let foreign aid workers in who might even possibly weaken their grip, or Al Quaeda terrorists who saw people’s heads off and post the videos on the internet are all living proof that people are just as capable of blood curdling cruelty as they ever were.

 Signature 

I am the very model of a Christian Evangelical
I’ve no need for courtesy when fighting things heretical
I know the bible word for word; you’ll find me pedagogical
I have my faith so I’ve no need for ideas that are logical
Atheists and Pagans fall before my wit satirical
They’ll burn in hell just as they should; their cries will be so lyrical
I’m always right, you’re always wrong, my reasoning’s dogmatical
For I’m the very model of a Christian Evangelical

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 07:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  137
Joined  2007-12-27

Nosm Chomsky - brilliant man, but way too ideologicol.

I once created a CD mash where I interspersed a stentorious monologue by Chomsky on South American drug trafficking with Guns and Roses’ “Welcome to the Jungle” - great stuff, if I do say so myself.

As to the thread topic:

Frank - Your arguments are not very far from true Democracy, but true Democracy is not feasible. 

Even if it could happen:

Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those others that have been tried.
- Winston Churchill

Profile
 
 
Posted: 25 August 2008 10:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  26
Joined  2008-08-21

He must be pretty popular or the consensus that he is the leading left intellectual would not keep sticking. 

When the mainstream culture censors someone’s ideas you have a pretty good idea that that person is right.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 25 August 2008 06:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]  
Member
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  842
Joined  2006-02-19
FrankChurch - 25 August 2008 02:53 PM

He must be pretty popular or the consensus that he is the leading left intellectual would not keep sticking.

And 50 million Elvis fans can’t be wrong!

Look, a lot of people parrot the idea that Noam Chomsky is the smartest man in academia simply because they have heard a lot of other people refer to him as such. You could call it a meme, you could call it “branding,” but the end result is the same. It’s like saying that Citizen Kane is “the greatest movie ever made,” or that Finnegan’s Wake is “the great comic novel of the 20th century,” or that the Mona Lisa is “the greatest painting of all time.” Most people say these things because they have heard someone they consider smart saying them, and they want people to think that they’re smart as well. It doesn’t necessarily mean that it is so, or that they are saying it from a position of authority.

FrankChurch - 25 August 2008 02:53 PM

When the mainstream culture censors someone’s ideas you have a pretty good idea that that person is right.

Didn’t Chomsky recently publish a new book? How is that being censored?

I think the term you are looking for is “ignores.” Mainstream culture certainly seems to be ignoring what Chomsky has to say, but it doesn’t stand to reason that that should automatically confer validity upon him.

[ Edited: 25 August 2008 06:07 PM by Celsus]
 Signature 

People have said that an infinite number of monkeys typing on an infinite number of keyboards would produce the works of Shakespeare, but the internet has shown this to be wrong.

Profile
 
 
   
3 of 4
3
 
‹‹ McCain Takes Lead in Polls      Prescient? ››
RSS 2.0     Atom Feed