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Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. Standard member bill718
    Enigma
    19 Jun '09 06:59
    In todays world of mass media it's easy to get caught up in all the negativity one hears about. Political scandals, corruption in governments and business, natural disasters etc. seem to dominate the media. Consider however what the standard of living was in your country just 50 years ago. Or 100, or 300. We enjoy a standard of living undreamed of by our ancestors. (no matter which country we live in). Every country has problems...this will always be the case, but in looking back over the last 1000 years, there has been much more progress than most of us realize.
  2. 19 Jun '09 09:38
    Yeah, I agree. The irony of the matter is that when industrialization finally delivered the goods it didn't during 1800-1950, people started to complain about it. Sure, there are lots of things still to be improved, and some new issues have come up like pollution, but most people in the industrialized world now have a decent standard of living.
  3. 19 Jun '09 09:42
    Originally posted by bill718
    In todays world of mass media it's easy to get caught up in all the negativity one hears about. Political scandals, corruption in governments and business, natural disasters etc. seem to dominate the media. Consider however what the standard of living was in your country just 50 years ago. Or 100, or 300. We enjoy a standard of living undreamed of by our anc ...[text shortened]... ng back over the last 1000 years, there has been much more progress than most of us realize.
    Communication skills have come along way too,bill718
  4. 19 Jun '09 12:17 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by bill718
    In todays world of mass media it's easy to get caught up in all the negativity one hears about. Political scandals, corruption in governments and business, natural disasters etc. seem to dominate the media. Consider however what the standard of living was in your country just 50 years ago. Or 100, or 300. We enjoy a standard of living undreamed of by our anc ...[text shortened]... ng back over the last 1000 years, there has been much more progress than most of us realize.
    I think by in large the form of governing has changed. It used to be only kings and czars and dictators which allows a smaller group of people to rule over a great many more people which prevented the wealth from being spread abroad. Speaking of czars....
  5. 19 Jun '09 13:07
    One of the most positive things is that so many people now have the freedom to express a wide variety of negative opinions.
  6. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    19 Jun '09 13:12
    Originally posted by bill718
    We enjoy a standard of living undreamed of by our ancestors. (no matter which country we live in).
    One could hardly argue with your thoughts, bill. But one has to see who uses this idea and how it is used. It is a statement of optimism and perspective. But in the wrong hands it is a statement used by those who may have benefitted from progress disproportionately, to dismiss calls for more proportionality in terms of economic and social justice.
  7. 19 Jun '09 13:22 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by FMF
    One could hardly argue with your thoughts, bill. But one has to see who uses this idea and how it is used. It is a statement of optimism and perspective. But in the wrong hands it is a statement used by those who may have benefitted from progress disproportionately, to dismiss calls for more proportionality in terms of economic and social justice.
    So what you are saying is, don't mention the fact these things were not accomplished in a "fair" socialistic system? Hmmm.
  8. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    19 Jun '09 13:33
    Originally posted by whodey
    So what you are saying is, don't mention the fact these things were not accomplished in a "fair" socialistic system? Hmmm.
    No. That was not what I am saying. I would add: as you well know. But I don't think you do know. I think my post, while no great profundity, was the diametric opposite of partisan small mindedness, which is the thing you do. The only thing you do.

    Can you really not hear the word "justice" without trying to make a dim dig about "socialism"?
  9. 19 Jun '09 18:59 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by FMF
    One could hardly argue with your thoughts, bill. But one has to see who uses this idea and how it is used. It is a statement of optimism and perspective. But in the wrong hands it is a statement used by those who may have benefitted from progress disproportionately, to dismiss calls for more proportionality in terms of economic and social justice.
    There's this idea that "positive thoughts" can only distract a movement -- for e.g -- if we talk about all the progress that's been made on race, from ending slavery to electing a black president, it will make everyone complacent and ignore all the work that still needs to be done to overcome racism.

    But if you ignore all that progress, many assume that after all these years, nothing has really changed - so why bother? It's the positives that give people hope.
  10. 19 Jun '09 20:22
    Originally posted by FMF
    No. That was not what I am saying. I would add: as you well know. Can you really not hear the word "justice" without trying to make a dim dig about "socialism"?
    I simply don't feel that justice can be accomplished across the board no matter the form of government. Granted, you can do things to increase the amount of justice handed out but I think that is deviod of the type of government at hand. For exmaple, whether it be capitalism or socialism the peole behind those economies are what drive justice. What bothers me about socialism, however, is the driive towards collectivism. It seems to me that the fewer the people that are calling the shots the less justice there tends to be as a rule. I say let the people govern themselves and is why I support greater power to state governments and local governments than I do a federal government where they try to micro manage my life behind a desk in Washington.
  11. 19 Jun '09 21:44
    Originally posted by whodey
    I say let the people govern themselves and is why I support greater power to state governments and local governments than I do a federal government where they try to micro manage my life behind a desk in Washington.
    Would favor a set-up where the federal government played a small role, but where there was a high level of socialism at the state and-or local level?
  12. 20 Jun '09 00:04 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by Melanerpes
    Would favor a set-up where the federal government played a small role, but where there was a high level of socialism at the state and-or local level?
    I have no issue with that. Allow the states to turn socialist if they so desire. Let the people in the state decide that instead of dragging the whole country down the same road forceably.
  13. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 00:54
    Originally posted by whodey
    I simply don't feel that justice can be accomplished across the board no matter the form of government. Granted, you can do things to increase the amount of justice handed out but I think that is deviod of the type of government at hand. For exmaple, whether it be capitalism or socialism the peole behind those economies are what drive justice.
    There you go again. My response to the OP was not an -ism-driven idea. But for you it has to be. Or you turn it into one. Always. You're another one of these posters whose breadth of political science extends little beyond 'you're either a capitalist or a socialist'. I simply said that the assertion that 'we are better off now than ever before' is used by some to perpetuate or diguise injustice - surely an uncontroversial point. And - wham - you're straight into fingering the 'the problem with collectivism' rosary beads.

    You say "I simply don't feel that justice can be accomplished". Now, according to AThousandYoung's insistence that (and I paraphrase) '...food security doesn't exist because it has never been fully achieved, therefore the striving for it doesn't exist either...' (snigger, snigger, what lovely cheese on these biscuits, how about another glass of wine?), would you say that the fact (according to you) that justice 'cannot be accomplished' means that justice has never been achieved, therefore it doesn't exist, therefore wanting to establish justice is simply people striving for something imaginary and impossible? If you say "I simply don't feel that justice can be accomplished", does this mean that there is no such thing as less just and more just? Surely not. Your cynical rambling in response to my rather self-evident response to the OP, seems to impugn the desire to improve the human condition beyond those aspects of 'progress' which regurgitate economic indicators - indicators that underpin these axioms so often brandished by those who seek to numb the momentum towards a wider access to justice.

    Do you disagree with my contention that the ideas in the OP are used in some quarters as a platitude to put the dampners on the aspirations of whole swathes of people to extract something a little more proportional out of a lopsided system?
  14. 20 Jun '09 02:22
    Originally posted by FMF
    Do you disagree with my contention that the ideas in the OP are used in some quarters as a platitude to put the dampners on the aspirations of whole swathes of people to extract something a little more proportional out of a lopsided system?[/b]
    No I don't disagree with your contention. I find people seek to snatch justice from the average Joe in a myriad and dizzying number of ways. My only point was that certain forms of government seem to be more condusive to this than others. For example, I think we can both agree that a dictatorship is less preferable than a socialistic or capitalistic system in terms of seeking justice within a given society....but there I go again with my "isms".
  15. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 04:38
    Originally posted by whodey
    No I don't disagree with your contention. I find people seek to snatch justice from the average Joe in a myriad and dizzying number of ways. My only point was that certain forms of government seem to be more condusive to this than others. For example, I think we can both agree that a dictatorship is less preferable than a socialistic or capitalistic system ...[text shortened]... n terms of seeking justice within a given society....but there I go again with my "isms".
    Much as you know I'd like to, I can't find too much to disagree with you on here. So I'll just bide my time.