Random Politics Thread

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vijayjohn
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-12-23, 21:50

mōdgethanc wrote:I'm not saying it is a common thing though, but I understand where it is coming from. If two million of my countrymen died under the Nazis, I wouldn't exactly be happy with the term.

But do (younger?) Poles today actually realize that more than two million Poles died under the Nazis? The only Polish person I know who was actually from Poland and who's ever talked to me about any of this seemed to be in denial that Poles were victims under the Nazis and believed they should have chosen to be their allies instead. :?
Saim wrote:But is the term actually used by anyone?

Well, I did find it used here, for whatever it's worth. Apparently, Fox News repeatedly used the phrase "Polish death camp" before the Polish Embassy called them out on it.
Also many Poles did collaborate with the Nazis and many of those that didn't were still anti-Semites.

I mean, you're right, but there were even Jews that collaborated with or fought for the Nazis and I'm not entirely sure what this has to do with "Polish concentration camps."

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-12-23, 21:57

vijayjohn wrote:But do (younger?) Poles today actually realize that more than two million Poles died under the Nazis? The only Polish person I know who was actually from Poland and who's ever talked to me about any of this seemed to be in denial that Poles were victims under the Nazis and believed they should have chosen to be their allies instead. :?
I have no way of knowing but I certainly hope so. I find it bizarre given that the Nazis hated Slavs, saw them as barely better than Jews in their racial hierarchy, and killed them by the millions, but there are a disturbingly large number of Slavic neo-Nazis (especially in Russia). My guess is that they're white supremacists who choose to ignore the Nazis' anti-Slavic beliefs because hating nonwhites is more important to them.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2018-12-23, 23:06

vijayjohn wrote:But do (younger?) Poles today actually realize that more than two million Poles died under the Nazis?


Yes, absolutely. It's common knowledge.

The only Polish person I know who was actually from Poland and who's ever talked to me about any of this seemed to be in denial that Poles were victims under the Nazis and believed they should have chosen to be their allies instead. :?


It sounds like they may be a nationalist or perhaps very, very confused. I have heard the argument that because Britain and France didn't help soon enough it would've been better to not fight the German occupation because they would've been occupied anyway, and of course it's not uncommon for nationalists in Eastern Europe to rehabilitate fascists and nazi collaborators while condemning local partisans and socialists as basically Bolsheviks or Stalinists. But in general open support for nazism is thankfully still taboo in Poland so they have to dance around it by talking about "German totalitarianism" and such.

I mean, you're right, but there were even Jews that collaborated with or fought for the Nazis and I'm not entirely sure what this has to do with "Polish concentration camps."


It has to do with the recently approved historical memory law which is really vague and could be used to cover up Polish antisemitism. The law was also passed by a government that flirts with anti-Semitism (I've seen evening news on the public TVP, essentially a mouthpiece for the ruling party PiS, do reports on how evil Soros is; PiS also particpates in marches organised by fascists).

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2018-12-27, 23:51

What do you guys make of the US withdrawal from Syria?

On the one hand, I feel bad that the Kurds are getting screwed over yet again, but what's the alternative? More indefinite US military bases?
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2018-12-28, 8:35

Yasna wrote:What do you guys make of the US withdrawal from Syria?

On the one hand, I feel bad that the Kurds are getting screwed over yet again, but what's the alternative? More indefinite US military bases?


I don't think of it as "good" or "bad". This is what happens when you're a militia that relies on the graces of an imperial power: when you're not useful anymore, you're abandoned. I don't think the YPG leadership was so naïve to think the US was "helping" them out of the bottom of their hearts, especially since they were basically foot soldiers to secure US military objectives. Unfortunately the war will keep going on and it will keep destroying, displacing and killing.

What does bother me is to see Western leftists, including self-described anarchists, begging the US to stay. For me this sort of thing isn't much better than the Assad support you see on other parts of the Left. What good do we get out of pretending to play geopolitics?

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-12-28, 17:44

The US is not comparable to Assad. But I see your point. An anarchist society can't rely on the most powerful state in the world to prop it up forever.
Yasna wrote:What do you guys make of the US withdrawal from Syria?

On the one hand, I feel bad that the Kurds are getting screwed over yet again, but what's the alternative? More indefinite US military bases?
Kurdistan should've been made an independent nation long ago and the US shouldn't have an open-ended military presence in the region. But then again Russia does and Russia has no more business being there than any other foreign power.

The war is doomed anyway and will be romanticized as a lost cause like the Spanish Civil War is today. I just hope the Kurds can keep some autonomy. As for the rest of Syria, they're fucked.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2018-12-28, 18:53

mōdgethanc wrote:The US is not comparable to Assad.


You're right. The US is much worse.


An anarchist society can't rely on the most powerful state in the world to prop it up forever.


Is the NSDF an anarchist society or a coalition of ethnic militias?

As for the rest of Syria, they're fucked.


They've been fucked since 2011 at least.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2018-12-28, 20:13

Saim wrote:You're right. The US is much worse.
Far 2edgy4me.
Is the NSDF an anarchist society or a coalition of ethnic militias?
Idk. Anarchists seem to like it, at least.
They've been fucked since 2011 at least.
yep

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2018-12-28, 21:11

Saim wrote:I don't think of it as "good" or "bad". This is what happens when you're a militia that relies on the graces of an imperial power: when you're not useful anymore, you're abandoned. I don't think the YPG leadership was so naïve to think the US was "helping" them out of the bottom of their hearts, especially since they were basically foot soldiers to secure US military objectives. Unfortunately the war will keep going on and it will keep destroying, displacing and killing.

Completely agree. The only realistic long-term options I see for the Kurds is to either find a powerful regional ally or else lie low and bide their time.

What does bother me is to see Western leftists, including self-described anarchists, begging the US to stay.

One partial explanation seems to be a knee-jerk negative reaction to everything Trump does.

mōdgethanc wrote:Kurdistan should've been made an independent nation long ago and the US shouldn't have an open-ended military presence in the region. But then again Russia does and Russia has no more business being there than any other foreign power.

Turning a conflict into a proxy war between outside powers or intensifying an existing proxy war is the worst possible outcome for the people on the ground. As unpalatable as it might be, the Syrian people would have been better off if Assad had won the war more quickly, which he would have minus US efforts.
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2018-12-30, 14:13

mōdgethanc wrote:.
Is the NSDF an anarchist society or a coalition of ethnic militias?
Idk. Anarchists seem to like it, at least.


Anarchists are not exactly immune to nationalism and mainstream geopolitics. Even back in the early 20th century as famous a thinker as Kropotkin supported the Allies in WWI (which put him to the right of the Bolsheviks on this issue, who had their later right deviations that we're all aware of), and of course in the '60s and '70s you had the intersection of Maoism and anarchism in things like Mao-Spontex.

I'm not going to rag on the leftists who actually went there and learned things and participated in infrastructure projects and social work and so on. But from what I've seen from their testimonies, even from the ones that are rather positive in their description of what's going on there, they all seem to admit that the political revolution is rather limited, that in practice it's the same PKK old guard with the guns that are calling the shots. I'm not going to reflexively dismiss every reform they've made but I'm very skeptical of the idea of people becoming anarchists because their jailed leader (that they have a personality cult for...) told them to; libertarianism is more of an ethos than a specific programme that can be passed down like that.

In any case I don't think it's the job of leftists to appeal to nation-states and their militaries to engage in 'humanitarian intervention', regardless of the sympathy we could have for the political programmes of individual militias. They're the root of the problem in the first place and it's not like the left actually has the power, consciousness or level of organisation to affect this in any real material way, it's the equivalent of writing a petition to Turkey to stop invading Syria.

TLDR: leftists begging the US to stay in Syria is useless in terms of actual material support and it's a net negative because it promotes confusion as to the nature of these conflicts.

Yasna wrote:One partial explanation seems to be a knee-jerk negative reaction to everything Trump does.


That may be the case of some liberals but I don't think that's what motivates people like Noam Chomsky or Debbie Bookchin.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby linguoboy » 2019-01-04, 22:24

https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/04/politics/shutdown-tsa-screening/index.html

US airport screeners, who are working without pay during the partial government shutdown, are calling in sick in order to take other work so that they can pay their bills.

This is fucked up in so many different ways I don't even know where to start.
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby voron » 2019-01-05, 18:26

Yasna wrote:As unpalatable as it might be, the Syrian people would have been better off if Assad had won the war more quickly, which he would have minus US efforts.

This is what I think. I met tons of Syrians, including those who live in Syria nowadays, who are ardent supporters of Assad and who praise the life that existed before the war. He couldn't be much worse than Lukashenko, the leader of Belarus, and I would definitely prefer him than all the terror and destructions we're now having in Syria.

This program which I liked a lot shows Syria before war. I don't know how much propaganda it has but it looks loveable:
https://youtube.com/watch?v=iUDxznlkm6Y

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2019-01-05, 21:38

The science is in, radicals have defective metacognition.

Political radicals don’t evaluate their own errors—about anything

"The authors sum up their work by writing that "more radical participants displayed less insight into the correctness of their choices and reduced updating of their confidence when presented with post-decision evidence." That's a bit surprising, given that most research into this area has focused on the ideas themselves and suggested that confidence is simply a mechanism for protecting those ideas."
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby mōdgethanc » 2019-01-08, 16:26

Luckily for me, I'm a R A D I C A L C E N T R I S T

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2019-01-09, 10:55

mōdgethanc wrote:Luckily for me, I'm a R A D I C A L C E N T R I S T



I'm also a Centrist, in the rational middle between the extremists Trotsky and Bukharin.

Wikipedia on the Right Opposition wrote:Stalin and his "centre" faction were allied with Bukharin and the Right Opposition from late 1924, with Bukharin elaborating Stalin's theory of Socialism in One Country. Together, they expelled Trotsky, Kamenev, Zinoviev and the United Opposition from the Communist Party in December 1927.


EDIT: All joking aside, I took a look at the study and unfortunately it doesn't seem to provide the questionnaire they used to determine who is 'radical' (if anyone can find it let me know). Based on a quick skim through the article they seem to associate 'dogmatism' and 'authoritarianism' with 'radicalism' before getting the opinions of the radicals (i.e. defining radicalism on the basis of 'dogmatism' and 'authoritarianism'), so although the data is likely sound the way they created their 'radical' sample might not be. Maybe I misread their discussion on the questionnaire but it's hard to tell how they exactly picked their radicals without looking at the questionnaire itself.

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-01-09, 13:14

Saim wrote:although the data is likely sound

I see sound being used as an adjective so rarely I had to read this three times before I finally understood what it meant. :shock:

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Saim » 2019-01-09, 13:24

vijayjohn wrote:
Saim wrote:although the data is likely sound

I see sound being used as an adjective so rarely I had to read this three times before I finally understood what it meant. :shock:


Did my sound sound sound?

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-01-09, 13:44

Saim wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
Saim wrote:although the data is likely sound

I see sound being used as an adjective so rarely I had to read this three times before I finally understood what it meant. :shock:


Did my sound sound sound?

Your sound in the sound does sound sound while whales sound, I eat sound sound, and doctors sound me with a sound to sound whether I'm (safe and) sound.

(Translation :P Hearing the noise you make in the inlet does give me the impression of being valid while whales dive downwards, I eat a squid's air bladder, and doctors examine me with an instrument for probing or dilating to test whether I'm okay).

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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby Yasna » 2019-01-09, 20:33

Saim wrote:EDIT: All joking aside, I took a look at the study and unfortunately it doesn't seem to provide the questionnaire they used to determine who is 'radical' (if anyone can find it let me know). Based on a quick skim through the article they seem to associate 'dogmatism' and 'authoritarianism' with 'radicalism' before getting the opinions of the radicals (i.e. defining radicalism on the basis of 'dogmatism' and 'authoritarianism'), so although the data is likely sound the way they created their 'radical' sample might not be. Maybe I misread their discussion on the questionnaire but it's hard to tell how they exactly picked their radicals without looking at the questionnaire itself.

It appears that they used the questionnaires from the studies they reference during the discussion about the questionnaires (references 4, 19, 20, 21, 22). Two of the questionnaires were open access.

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/suppl/10.1177/0956797613494848/suppl_file/DS_10.1177_0956797613494848.pdf
https://figshare.com/articles/_The_12_Item_Social_and_Economic_Conservatism_Scale_SECS_/874681
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Re: Random Politics Thread

Postby linguoboy » 2019-01-10, 16:45

I ended up in a discussion on Facebook with a supporter of Trump's wall and I asked him if there was any argument which could convince him not to support it and he told me no. Furthermore, he told me that listening to experts is "what got us into this mess" and to get ourselves out of it we had to do something completely different.

This, my friends, is why we are all doomed.
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