Random Politics Thread

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-25, 21:55

md0 wrote:Will the European Commission do anything about this?

They're meeting today, right?

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby md0 » 2018-11-26, 5:52

Someone who attempts to cross to/from north as is prevented by this travelling circus of a protest will have to file a complaint I guess.
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-11-27, 10:57

Since the Young Turks came up, is there anyone who can explain to me, in a relatively unbiased way, why exactly they are so hated? As far as I can tell it's mostly because they're left-leaning, and popular. I haven't watched a ton of their show but what I have seen of it is just generic liberal talking points. Why do they get called SJWs and "regressive left"?

I should clarify first: I am aware of 1) their problematic name 2) the offensive articles Cenk wrote when he was in university and 3) his history of Armenian genocide denial, but none of those have much to do with the content of the show itself.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-27, 13:25

mōdgethanc wrote:Why do they get called SJWs and "regressive left"?

Because right-wingers call everyone who's left-wing both SJWs and regressive left.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2018-11-27, 15:53

mōdgethanc wrote:As far as I can tell it's mostly because they're left-leaning, and popular.


I don't think there's anything else to it. YouTube leans heavily right (although maybe this has started changing in the past year or so), and right-wing YouTube channels and as well as other fashy holes like 4chan will often link to progressive videos and brigade the comment sections, so if you hit one of their holy cows(1) you get a massive wave of hate comments and dislikes.

(1) Islamophobia is a big one: expect any video on Islamophobia to have a million comments saying not only "how is this Islamophobia? it's just criticism of religion" but also "this is not Islamophobia because all Muslims actually are terrorists and rapists".

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby IpseDixit » 2018-11-27, 19:24

I wonder why many scientists seem to be quite a toxic presence when they decide to join the public discourse. In the best case scenario, they seem to be people with a very narrow worldview whose philosophical thinking is 1mm deep, whereas in the worst case scenario they're outright a-holes and bullies who can't help but feel superior to anyone else. And I've noticed this trend both in the Anglosphere (e.g: Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, Niel deGrasse Tyson) and Italy (e.g: Piergiorgio Odifreddi, Roberto Burioni, Margherita Hack).

And today I had the umpteenth proof of this with Roberto Burioni (a professor of virology who's become an anti-anti-vaxxers star in this country) bullying via social media a philosopher who dared criticize him for some of his views. Basically this philosopher has been mocked for still being just an adjunct professor at 40 (which is actually not that surprising in Italian academia) and for being in the process of going bald.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-11-28, 4:09

My guess is that it may have something to do with the often toxic and competitive culture within science itself. For example, scientism (snobbery towards everything that isn't science) is common. Also, most scientists see their work as apolitical and most of the rest of academia is left-leaning, so if you get an edgy brave boi who is right-leaning, he will probably be obnoxious about it because of the narrative that conservatives are an endangered species who are being silenced.
Saim wrote:I don't think there's anything else to it. YouTube leans heavily right (although maybe this has started changing in the past year or so), and right-wing YouTube channels and as well as other fashy holes like 4chan will often link to progressive videos and brigade the comment sections, so if you hit one of their holy cows(1) you get a massive wave of hate comments and dislikes.
There are more leftists or centrists now, but most of the big names I can think of are right or even alt-right.
(1) Islamophobia is a big one: expect any video on Islamophobia to have a million comments saying not only "how is this Islamophobia? it's just criticism of religion" but also "this is not Islamophobia because all Muslims actually are terrorists and rapists".
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-28, 4:40

Honestly, I thought scientists can be toxic because the fact that you're smart doesn't mean you're not also a dick, and also because scientists often specialize in something and don't necessarily know much about what people more generally are talking about. I'm reminded of my uncle who's a physicist but watches and believes (or at least used to believe) Fox News and apparently also supports Modi. Of course he knows a lot about physics, but he has no idea how unreliable his news sources are.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2018-11-28, 5:39

mōdgethanc wrote:Since the Young Turks came up, is there anyone who can explain to me, in a relatively unbiased way, why exactly they are so hated?

Because Cenk is dishonest and seemingly incapable of fairly representing others' views? Here's a well-documented case:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GSobo5sk4s

IpseDixit wrote:I wonder why many scientists seem to be quite a toxic presence when they decide to join the public discourse. In the best case scenario, they seem to be people with a very narrow worldview whose philosophical thinking is 1mm deep, whereas in the worst case scenario they're outright a-holes and bullies who can't help but feel superior to anyone else. And I've noticed this trend both in the Anglosphere (e.g: Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, Niel deGrasse Tyson) and Italy (e.g: Piergiorgio Odifreddi, Roberto Burioni, Margherita Hack).

It takes a considerably sized ego for an individual to believe that they have something to add to the public discourse in the first place. Out of the three Anglophones you mentioned, only Krauss has really irked me though.
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-11-28, 6:08

vijayjohn wrote:Honestly, I thought scientists can be toxic because the fact that you're smart doesn't mean you're not also a dick, and also because scientists often specialize in something and don't necessarily know much about what people more generally are talking about. I'm reminded of my uncle who's a physicist but watches and believes (or at least used to believe) Fox News and apparently also supports Modi. Of course he knows a lot about physics, but he has no idea how unreliable his news sources are.
People in physical science and especially engineering are notorious for this. If you're in a highly technical field which the public doesn't understand very well, and making a lot of money for it, it's easy to see how that can lead to a certain degree of arrogance.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2018-11-28, 7:45

Yasna wrote:Because Cenk is dishonest and seemingly incapable of fairly representing others' views? Here's a well-documented case:


Is there a Sam Harris critic who doesn't "misrepresent" his views? Sam Harris misrepresented Chomsky's views and then refused to be corrected, did the right-wing internet excommunicate him over this?

Do you think Cenk Uyghur is uniquely dishonest compared to the rest of political YouTube? I didn't realise some of the most notoriously atrocious comment sections on the internet valued honesty so much.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2018-11-28, 17:04

Saim wrote:Is there a Sam Harris critic who doesn't "misrepresent" his views?

Chomsky, as far as I know.

Sam Harris misrepresented Chomsky's views and then refused to be corrected, did the right-wing internet excommunicate him over this?

I'm not sure what misrepresentation you're referring to, although I did read their exchange and thought Chomsky had the better arguments.

Do you think Cenk Uyghur is uniquely dishonest compared to the rest of political YouTube?

Not really. He has a lot of company (all over the political spectrum).
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-11-29, 1:00

Political YouTube is absolutely full of grifters, mainly right-wing dipshits (think PragerU).

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-12-01, 4:45

mōdgethanc wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:Honestly, I thought scientists can be toxic because the fact that you're smart doesn't mean you're not also a dick, and also because scientists often specialize in something and don't necessarily know much about what people more generally are talking about. I'm reminded of my uncle who's a physicist but watches and believes (or at least used to believe) Fox News and apparently also supports Modi. Of course he knows a lot about physics, but he has no idea how unreliable his news sources are.
People in physical science and especially engineering are notorious for this. If you're in a highly technical field which the public doesn't understand very well, and making a lot of money for it, it's easy to see how that can lead to a certain degree of arrogance.

Just to be clear, I don't think my uncle is arrogant at all, but he also knows a hell of a lot more about physics than he does about how to tell whether his understanding of the news is accurate or not.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-12-01, 23:08

George H. W. Bush did the following things during his presidency:
  • freed Kuwait
  • disparaged The Simpsons
  • refused to eat broccoli
  • said atheists shouldn't be citizens
  • threw up all over the prime minister of Japan
Out of these, I'd say maybe 2/5 are morally defensible.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2018-12-01, 23:35

mōdgethanc wrote:George H. W. Bush did the following things during his presidency:

The worst was refusing to apologize for the US shooting down Iran Air Flight 655, killing 290 people. I don't see how you can do that unless you view Iranians as some kind of subhumans.
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-12-02, 2:33

I dunno, I think at least his approach to China was reasonable, which can't have been very easy given that he was friends with Deng Xiaoping but the Tian'anmen Square protests and massacre took place during his term. He also seems to have been the only president in American history to have lived in China.
mōdgethanc wrote:George H. W. Bush did the following things during his presidency:
  • freed Kuwait
  • disparaged The Simpsons
  • refused to eat broccoli
  • said atheists shouldn't be citizens
  • threw up all over the prime minister of Japan
Out of these, I'd say maybe 2/5 are morally defensible.

I'd say none. It was his own administration that armed and supported Saddam Hussein in the first place, so Kuwait was largely his own mess, and the rest was all in terrible taste (did he never try broccoli in Chinese food? Broccoli is fucking amazing in Chinese food!).

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby JackFrost » 2018-12-02, 18:27

Not to forget to mention he's responsible for over a hundred thousand of preventable AIDS deaths because his homophobic views clouded him really good. Cutting the cash to the AIDS fund and telling people to fix their "well don't be a sexual deprave and you won't get AIDS" or something along that line.

The LGBTQ~ folk definitely has gotten their last laugh after learning of his croaking on the eve of the World AIDS Day.
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-12-03, 0:04

vijayjohn wrote:I'd say none. It was his own administration that armed and supported Saddam Hussein in the first place, so Kuwait was largely his own mess
Maybe, but it wouldn't have been great to let Saddam just waltz into Kuwait and take it. At most it would set a very bad precedent.
and the rest was all in terrible taste (did he never try broccoli in Chinese food? Broccoli is fucking amazing in Chinese food!).
Chinese food is one of the few settings where I like broccoli. Otherwise it's bland as fuck.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-12-03, 0:16

mōdgethanc wrote:Maybe, but it wouldn't have been great to let Saddam just waltz into Kuwait and take it. At most it would set a very bad precedent.

I mean, I'm not saying I support invading a foreign country or anything (*takes a second to glare at several American presidents*), but the American government has frequently set very bad precedents, even for itself. You know, like arming and supporting Saddam Hussein. So if it's precedent they're worried about, maybe they should reform their own foreign policy rather than try to control what the leaders of other countries do.


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