Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

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Ellie
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Ellie » 21 Aug 2019, 09:44

JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:15
things that in their minds have value because they are part of a positive collective identity. Being a Family Man is a good thing, right? Right???
This is a little bit weird to me because I think, if it's a good thing to you, if it has value to you, that's all that matters, right? If you're doing the "good thing" just for the approval of others, isn't that hollow? But I guess I can see that maybe they think if the inherent meaning and goodness is self-constructed, then it's "made up"? (Speaking from the experience, here, of someone who has attended 12-step meetings and been told to believe in "A God of your own understanding", okay, but if God is whatever I want him to be then isn't he imaginary?)

Speaking of God, I wonder if the conservatives' need for values we all agree on is related to how many religious people are just BAFFLED by the idea that atheists could have a moral code or choose to do good works for their own sake without fear of divine punishment. That we all have to agree on The Thing or it doesn't count.

I'm not sure if I'm making sense, I'm pre-coffee and very frazzled.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 21 Aug 2019, 10:01

Ellie wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:44
I wonder if the conservatives' need for values we all agree on is related to how many religious people are just BAFFLED by the idea that atheists could have a moral code or choose to do good works for their own sake without fear of divine punishment.
It's common amongst the conservatives I know to insist that right and wrong can only be informed by religion. That as an atheist I have no reason to not just go around murdering people save fear of the law.
I be like, Dude, you can't possibly believe that. If you did you wouldn't be making that argument because why would I care?
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Mo » 21 Aug 2019, 10:24

JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:15
Not that I'm a conservative whisperer or anything, and Trumpism aside, but I think they see themselves as fighting a losing battle to hang onto some kind of common national myths and social institutions that are the only thing that make the US a Nation. They hate po mo talk primarily because of this sort of thing - it's an attack on things that in their minds have value because they are part of a positive collective identity. Being a Family Man is a good thing, right? Right??? I think they see this sort of collective myth acceptance as something similar to the acceptance that money has value. YOu can say haha money is just paper and the fed and so forth, but it has value because people participate in a common story about it. Conservatives see a lot of things like that, notably the ideas of Nation, Family, and Faith.
But some of the things they're resistant to shattering as national myths aren't the generic "mom, baseball, apple pie" are good things. Like they're mad that people are pushing against the Lost Cause story of the Civil War or that people may take offense to Confederate monuments. Balko had an interesting story where he talked about how critics accused Vanderbilt of white-washing history because they wanted to rename Confederate Memorial Hall (and return the donation to the UDC). Turns out the building itself was a white-washing of history, it sat on the site of an all black college where the college was terrorized with staff and students were shot at by white supremacists and buildings were burned down by the same. Then the UDC raised money to put up a building on the site of that old college. And now they're mad that people no longer want to honor the Confederacy. Those myths are unifying if you ignore that a big chunk of bemelanined people exist. Which is funny in light of all the "Forgotten Man" rhetoric.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Ellie » 21 Aug 2019, 10:26

Warren wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 10:01
It's common amongst the conservatives I know to insist that right and wrong can only be informed by religion. That as an atheist I have no reason to not just go around murdering people save fear of the law.
I be like, Dude, you can't possibly believe that. If you did you wouldn't be making that argument because why would I care?
David's parents are both very religious, very conservative. (They know we're not conservative but don't know I'm no longer religious.) His mom was recently relaying a story from his dad's Bible Study where somebody said, "If it were proved to you, irrefutably, that there was no God and no Hell, would you still continue to do good works?" And apparently his dad thought about it for a long time before saying, "Yes, I think I would." I mean, props I guess to being so honest about how long he had to think about it, but shouldn't he realize that story does not paint him in a good light????
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JD » 21 Aug 2019, 10:29

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by dhex » 21 Aug 2019, 10:31

Mo wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 10:24
JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:15
Not that I'm a conservative whisperer or anything, and Trumpism aside, but I think they see themselves as fighting a losing battle to hang onto some kind of common national myths and social institutions that are the only thing that make the US a Nation. They hate po mo talk primarily because of this sort of thing - it's an attack on things that in their minds have value because they are part of a positive collective identity. Being a Family Man is a good thing, right? Right??? I think they see this sort of collective myth acceptance as something similar to the acceptance that money has value. YOu can say haha money is just paper and the fed and so forth, but it has value because people participate in a common story about it. Conservatives see a lot of things like that, notably the ideas of Nation, Family, and Faith.
But some of the things they're resistant to shattering as national myths aren't the generic "mom, baseball, apple pie" are good things. Like they're mad that people are pushing against the Lost Cause story of the Civil War or that people may take offense to Confederate monuments. Balko had an interesting story where he talked about how critics accused Vanderbilt of white-washing history because they wanted to rename Confederate Memorial Hall (and return the donation to the UDC). Turns out the building itself was a white-washing of history, it sat on the site of an all black college where the college was terrorized with staff and students were shot at by white supremacists and buildings were burned down by the same. Then the UDC raised money to put up a building on the site of that old college. And now they're mad that people no longer want to honor the Confederacy. Those myths are unifying if you ignore that a big chunk of bemelanined people exist. Which is funny in light of all the "Forgotten Man" rhetoric.
yah like if they really cared about the market share of national myths they'd want to try and make them something more people could buy into, not fewer.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Highway » 21 Aug 2019, 10:42

JasonL wrote:Not that I'm a conservative whisperer or anything, and Trumpism aside, but I think they see themselves as fighting a losing battle to hang onto some kind of common national myths and social institutions that are the only thing that make the US a Nation. They hate po mo talk primarily because of this sort of thing - it's an attack on things that in their minds have value because they are part of a positive collective identity. Being a Family Man is a good thing, right? Right??? I think they see this sort of collective myth acceptance as something similar to the acceptance that money has value. YOu can say haha money is just paper and the fed and so forth, but it has value because people participate in a common story about it. Conservatives see a lot of things like that, notably the ideas of Nation, Family, and Faith.
I personally think that a lot of this drive for conformity is rooted in the need to have their choices validated. If everyone else does the same thing you're doing, then it can't be wrong. Everyone does it. But start taking that confirmation away and people get unmoored, they have to justify their actions, even if only to themself. And if there was a choice of something else to do, then maybe they're doing the "wrong" thing. It's very hard for people to allow themselves to justify doing something just because they like to, or because they wanted to, or because it didn't matter. To them, those are "excuses" you use when you fucked up and made the "wrong" choice, and therefore not valid decisions.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JasonL » 21 Aug 2019, 11:55

Mo wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 10:24
JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:15
Not that I'm a conservative whisperer or anything, and Trumpism aside, but I think they see themselves as fighting a losing battle to hang onto some kind of common national myths and social institutions that are the only thing that make the US a Nation. They hate po mo talk primarily because of this sort of thing - it's an attack on things that in their minds have value because they are part of a positive collective identity. Being a Family Man is a good thing, right? Right??? I think they see this sort of collective myth acceptance as something similar to the acceptance that money has value. YOu can say haha money is just paper and the fed and so forth, but it has value because people participate in a common story about it. Conservatives see a lot of things like that, notably the ideas of Nation, Family, and Faith.
But some of the things they're resistant to shattering as national myths aren't the generic "mom, baseball, apple pie" are good things. Like they're mad that people are pushing against the Lost Cause story of the Civil War or that people may take offense to Confederate monuments. Balko had an interesting story where he talked about how critics accused Vanderbilt of white-washing history because they wanted to rename Confederate Memorial Hall (and return the donation to the UDC). Turns out the building itself was a white-washing of history, it sat on the site of an all black college where the college was terrorized with staff and students were shot at by white supremacists and buildings were burned down by the same. Then the UDC raised money to put up a building on the site of that old college. And now they're mad that people no longer want to honor the Confederacy. Those myths are unifying if you ignore that a big chunk of bemelanined people exist. Which is funny in light of all the "Forgotten Man" rhetoric.
Oh totally. I'm in a position of trying to describe views that are not remotely close to my own. My stab at it would be, if pressed, and again I'm trying to take the best pass at old timey Burkean kind of conservatism not Trumpism, I think they'd say something like "you think you can just create new myths 'that everyone likes' but you are wrong about that. Myths are generational if they are to be anything other than whatever people seem agitated about right now. The persistence is the point. What you people are trying to do is create a story where the nation itself has no material foundation other than something like the 3rd Reich and then ask me why can we have myths everyone can buy into? If your story is the one we all adopt, there is no nation and we might as well all be Hugh Akstonian anarchists. Except you don't want that either, you want us all to buy in to a story where tons of transfers all go in ways you happen to prefer at any moment and that's the whole thing." Something like that. I probably cobbled that together from 6 or 8 different arguments Ive read over the years.

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Jennifer » 21 Aug 2019, 16:44

Ellie wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:44
Speaking of God, I wonder if the conservatives' need for values we all agree on is related to how many religious people are just BAFFLED by the idea that atheists could have a moral code or choose to do good works for their own sake without fear of divine punishment. That we all have to agree on The Thing or it doesn't count.

I'm not sure if I'm making sense, I'm pre-coffee and very frazzled.
I've occasionally wondered -- specifically regarding those religious types who swear atheists cannot possibly have moral codes, the kind who think it's a zinger-comeback to say something like "But with no fear of hellfire eternal, what's to stop you from raping and murdering as many kids as you want, huh?" -- for all of Freud's psychological theories which have been rightfully tossed into the dustbin, he was absolutely spot on regarding "projection" -- taking the flaws you can't admit having yourself, and projecting them onto others. (See: "the politicos who shriek loudest about degenerate gays are invariably the ones who get caught in gay sex scandals" and "the politicos who scream the most about adulterers in the opposing party inevitably turn out to be cheating on their own wives.") So, if "the fear of hell" (rather than, like, "your own conscience and innate sense of basic human decency") is the only thing preventing YOUR pious self from raping and murdering a bunch of kids....
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Dangerman » 21 Aug 2019, 17:43

In the view of folks who believe morality descends from God, it's not just fear of God, but the assurance that comes from his approval, because there are many times when normal people question, 'how bad would it really be to steal/lie/murder in this case where I feel like it's really ok?', and God stands to answer that question 'no, never ok, even if *you and your society think it's ok*.

This obviously causes problems when society changes rapidly (duh!) and things that were previously sinful to a bronze age community become socially acceptable to moderns.

So when someone had to think about whether or not they would still refrain from murder if God didn't exist, I think that's fair, and I don't think it's reasonable to think less of them. I would say that's it's the same as saying "if the government suddenly decayed into helplessness, would you never be tempted into bad behavior by the absence of legal consequences?", where 'never' is actually really important. Like, never ever? Really?

And 'basic human decency' is doing so much work in that explanation. I guess a few thousand years worth of philosophy is wasted time because we all just know what 'being a good person' is, and if you don't you're a monster I guess?

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JasonL » 21 Aug 2019, 17:53

Ellie wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:44
JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 09:15
things that in their minds have value because they are part of a positive collective identity. Being a Family Man is a good thing, right? Right???
This is a little bit weird to me because I think, if it's a good thing to you, if it has value to you, that's all that matters, right? If you're doing the "good thing" just for the approval of others, isn't that hollow? But I guess I can see that maybe they think if the inherent meaning and goodness is self-constructed, then it's "made up"? (Speaking from the experience, here, of someone who has attended 12-step meetings and been told to believe in "A God of your own understanding", okay, but if God is whatever I want him to be then isn't he imaginary?)

Speaking of God, I wonder if the conservatives' need for values we all agree on is related to how many religious people are just BAFFLED by the idea that atheists could have a moral code or choose to do good works for their own sake without fear of divine punishment. That we all have to agree on The Thing or it doesn't count.

I'm not sure if I'm making sense, I'm pre-coffee and very frazzled.
In my view if it's good to you that's all that matters, but that doesn't solve what conservatives get the vapors about. If you have your thing that's good and I have my thing that's good and there's literally nothing we pretty much all think is good there is no basis for action in a collective interest because in some sense we share collective interests. I don't engage civically or politically to help you because we don't have anything in common. You don't want any common elements of The Good Society I want, and in fact you will spend energy to torch the things I want to see.

For libertarians, including me, this is a bizarre set of worries because we view massively individualized preference expression as the good society all by itself. Conservatives worry that you can't gin up voluntary collective sacrifice such as taxation for a Big Goal or common defense or whatever on that kind of basis. Maximal preference expression with no commonality is a recipe for a low trust, low collective investment society of unassociated atomic identities. There is no Us. So conservatives are hostile to "libertines" in that sense.

They are more hostile to liberals, who they feel are not looking for maximized expression of preferences but maximized expression of entitlement.

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by lunchstealer » 21 Aug 2019, 18:21

JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 07:00
The nature of the divisive thing from the right is they think the standard national myths are important. Divisive is “you are eroding the glue of America as a nation”.
I usually take the 'divisive' thing as the hmm hawm I say you're not being CIVIL in this discussion where I say that these immigrants are a bunch of MS-13 thugs in disguise and they're all animals or human traffickers hoom hmmm thing. It's tone policing for the menopausal red-state set.

I couldn't confirm for certain that I've seen that in real life, but I am pretty sure that I have seen that sort of thing from more workaday Southerners, especially during the 'take-the-flag-from-the-State-House' kerfuffle in SC a few years back.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Dangerman » 21 Aug 2019, 18:26

To circle back, we'll never know what the person meant by 'divisive' because the person is wholly fabricated out of straw and bad faith by OP.

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Jennifer » 21 Aug 2019, 18:29

lunchstealer wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:21
JasonL wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 07:00
The nature of the divisive thing from the right is they think the standard national myths are important. Divisive is “you are eroding the glue of America as a nation”.
I usually take the 'divisive' thing as the hmm hawm I say you're not being CIVIL in this discussion where I say that these immigrants are a bunch of MS-13 thugs in disguise and they're all animals or human traffickers hoom hmmm thing.
Bonus points when they're the same people who in other contexts love Ben Shapiro's quote "Facts don't care about your feelings."
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by lunchstealer » 21 Aug 2019, 18:41

Dangerman wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:26
To circle back, we'll never know what the person meant by 'divisive' because the person is wholly fabricated out of straw and bad faith by OP.
Nope.

Just no.

Maybe in yankeetopia that's true, but this is not a bad faith strawman in South Carolina. I can't point you to an exact quote by someone in my facebook feed, but it's frankly a standard form of argument. The generic form is not limited to team Red, but in the Heritage Not Hate crowd, I've seen people turn on a dime in this way in similar circumstances.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Mo » 21 Aug 2019, 18:42

Dangerman wrote:To circle back, we'll never know what the person meant by 'divisive' because the person is wholly fabricated out of straw and bad faith by OP.
I mean I’m pretty sure he’s responding to comments like this:



Or shit from Erik Erickson. Like it’s not that hard to find in the blue check journey world. It’s a humorous tweet, not the discussion section of a Wikipedia article where you need to footnote everything.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Dangerman » 21 Aug 2019, 18:50

lunchstealer wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:41
Dangerman wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:26
To circle back, we'll never know what the person meant by 'divisive' because the person is wholly fabricated out of straw and bad faith by OP.
Nope.

Just no.

Maybe in yankeetopia that's true, but this is not a bad faith strawman in South Carolina. I can't point you to an exact quote by someone in my facebook feed, but it's frankly a standard form of argument. The generic form is not limited to team Red, but in the Heritage Not Hate crowd, I've seen people turn on a dime in this way in similar circumstances.
Nah, it's bad argument to just say Trust Me. Sorry Lunch, this isn't a comment on your character, but it's not enough to just say Lived Experience while you put words in someone's mouth.

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Dangerman » 21 Aug 2019, 18:50

Mo wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:42
Dangerman wrote:To circle back, we'll never know what the person meant by 'divisive' because the person is wholly fabricated out of straw and bad faith by OP.
I mean I’m pretty sure he’s responding to comments like this:



Or shit from Erik Erickson. Like it’s not that hard to find in the blue check journey world. It’s a humorous tweet, not the discussion section of a Wikipedia article where you need to footnote everything.
Did any of those people protest the removal of Confederate statues on the basis of historical value?

ETA: This is the accusation:

(A)“Removing monuments honoring Confederate leaders is erasing our history!”

(B)Well, as a history buff you’ll want to read this fascinating New York Times package exploring...

(C)“Why must you be so divisive?”

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by lunchstealer » 21 Aug 2019, 18:51

Dangerman wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:50
lunchstealer wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:41
Dangerman wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 18:26
To circle back, we'll never know what the person meant by 'divisive' because the person is wholly fabricated out of straw and bad faith by OP.
Nope.

Just no.

Maybe in yankeetopia that's true, but this is not a bad faith strawman in South Carolina. I can't point you to an exact quote by someone in my facebook feed, but it's frankly a standard form of argument. The generic form is not limited to team Red, but in the Heritage Not Hate crowd, I've seen people turn on a dime in this way in similar circumstances.
Nah, it's bad argument to just say Trust Me. Sorry Lunch, this isn't a comment on your character, but it's not enough to just say Lived Experience while you put words in someone's mouth.
You're putting faith into someone's mouth.

I'm serious, you're dead fucking wrong on this one.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Dangerman » 21 Aug 2019, 18:53

No, I'm not wrong because I'm not asserting that nobody says that, I'm asserting that it's fucking bad argumentation to say people said things without backing it up.

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 21 Aug 2019, 19:29

You're dead fucking wrong lunch.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Jennifer » 21 Aug 2019, 19:30

Ellie wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 10:26
David's parents are both very religious, very conservative. (They know we're not conservative but don't know I'm no longer religious.) His mom was recently relaying a story from his dad's Bible Study where somebody said, "If it were proved to you, irrefutably, that there was no God and no Hell, would you still continue to do good works?" And apparently his dad thought about it for a long time before saying, "Yes, I think I would." I mean, props I guess to being so honest about how long he had to think about it, but shouldn't he realize that story does not paint him in a good light????
I overlooked this the first time. That's ... really baffling. Like, regardless of whether he expects divine reward or punishment, doesn't he get that "glowy" feeling from when you know you did something good for someone? Even if it's just little stuff like the anecdotes various people share in the "good deed of the day" discussion -- I got that "glowy" feeling when I found a man's driver's license and drove a couple miles out of my way to return it to his grateful spouse who answered the door when I knocked; others here whose names I won't mention got the "glowy" feeling when they did similar nice things for friends, neighbors and strangers; sometimes when I grocery-shop alone I'll have to ask some tall person to get down a top-shelf item I can't reach, and I've never been refused and, judging from the looks on people's faces, they too got the "glowy" feeling from knowing "Cool, I got to help a fellow human and at hardly any cost to myself, too!" ... we're social animals, we're hard-wired to feel that "glow," our non-human primate cousins likely feel the glow when they pick nits out of each other's back fur or whatever else counts as "a good deed" among monkeykind... and now I kinda wonder now how often David's dad gets the glow.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Eric the .5b » 21 Aug 2019, 19:49

Jennifer wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 19:30
Ellie wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 10:26
David's parents are both very religious, very conservative. (They know we're not conservative but don't know I'm no longer religious.) His mom was recently relaying a story from his dad's Bible Study where somebody said, "If it were proved to you, irrefutably, that there was no God and no Hell, would you still continue to do good works?" And apparently his dad thought about it for a long time before saying, "Yes, I think I would." I mean, props I guess to being so honest about how long he had to think about it, but shouldn't he realize that story does not paint him in a good light????
I overlooked this the first time. That's ... really baffling. Like, regardless of whether he expects divine reward or punishment, doesn't he get that "glowy" feeling from when you know you did something good for someone?
I don't know David's parents, but I'd expect anyone doing the "But if all the foundations of your moral worldview fell away..." thought experiment in a serious way to take at least a few seconds to think over any answers, including that wary, "Would I really do what I think I'd do?" examination of one's answer.




* And in a conversation, a few seconds is generally what people really mean for taking "long time" to answer.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Andrew » 21 Aug 2019, 20:04

I don't think it takes a particularly conservative viewpoint to be skeptical of the motivations behind the NYT running a series about how America was Really and Truly founded on slavery. Does anyone actually believe it's going to be a scholarly, dispassionate inquiry? It doesn't take a rocket surgeon to know that the unspoken second half is "and that is why aggrieved group X deserves more power and money."
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Eric the .5b » 21 Aug 2019, 20:11

Andrew wrote:
21 Aug 2019, 20:04
I don't think it takes a particularly conservative viewpoint to be skeptical of the motivations behind the NYT running a series about how America was Really and Truly founded on slavery. Does anyone actually believe it's going to be a scholarly, dispassionate inquiry? It doesn't take a rocket surgeon to know that the unspoken second half is "and that is why aggrieved group X deserves more power and money."
I'm not sure the best way to counter that unspoken second half is to get all twitchy about what they actually say.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
Cet animal est très méchant / Quand on l'attaque il se défend.

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