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Bush bashing & warmongering

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Severn
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since 07-17-99
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25 posted 03-08-2003 05:38 PM       View Profile for Severn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Severn

LR - The framework of our society is an ideology...I'd say that might answer your question, in an ironical fashion...

be back later

K
Local Rebel
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since 12-21-1999
Posts 5742
Southern Abstentia


26 posted 03-08-2003 06:56 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Of course you're correct ...

But my question wasn't about whether or not there are ideologies but about what we're doing with them.

I grew up in the shadow of Shiloh... one of the biggest battles of the American Civil War.  I also lived on top of Missionary Ridge -- one of the most barbaric battles of that war.

We've had a major terrorist attack committed by an American against Americans from one side of the political spectrum here.  We have peaceful liberal environmentalists blowing up SUV's in auto dealer parking lots.

The speech of both sides continues to ratchet up.

That's what I'm saying... not asking..

Thanks
Crazy Eddie
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since 09-14-2002
Posts 221


27 posted 03-09-2003 10:24 AM       View Profile for Crazy Eddie   Email Crazy Eddie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Crazy Eddie

With regard to the question of indisputable facts Iím pretty much with Ron Ė they donít exist Ė itís not just the problem that facts are almost impossible to correlate with truth itís the claim that they are indisputable. For a fact to be indisputable it has to be universally accepted, there can be no alternate beliefs, no contrary explanations no questions regarding the legitimacy of the stated fact -Ėin effect no dispute that the fact is in fact a fact.

To test the assertion that the purported facts given by Deer are indisputable is easy, you donít need to question the purported facts themselves you simply need to confirm that everyone accepts them without question - that not a single person disputes them. If there is one solitary person that disputes them they are not indisputable unless that persons questions or assertions are proved to be either irrelevant or unfounded.

Severn raised the point that facts can be different for different people, I agree with Brad that this although philosophically interesting and ostensibly correct is probably a moot point with regard to truth. That said I have to disagree that ancestral spells can be totally discounted as mumbo jumbo without proof that they absolutely do not have anything to do with cancer. Before everybody decides that Iím closing my mind to intelligence and logic with that statement Iíd like to add that I believe that they probably donít but Iím willing to believe they possibly might.


Back to the original post.

quote:
When will it be 'okay' to go in and disarm Saddam? Ofter he unleashes a biological or chemical weapon on a neighboring country and thousands upon thousands of innocent people die? Or after he drops tactical missles on the Kurds, in his own country? Will it be okay to stop him then?

Yes, and Iíd be the first one advocating military intervention in such a scenario, I simply donít believe that we need to invade Iraq to avoid the possibility of such an occurrence. Brad suggested in another post that my belief in this respect is due to my need to attain a moral high ground, I think heís bang on the button, my support for any war would require it to be morally correct Ė a just war. My opinion is that at this time war is neither morally correct nor just.

My arguments against war have often included the term pre-emptive strike and the claim that such an action could not be deemed moral. I think I was completely wrong in that respect. A pre-emptive strike against a clear and present threat or danger can be deemed morally correct, fortunately we do not face such a threat or danger, what we face is the potential for such an occurrence. An attack under such circumstances cannot be classed as a pre-emptive strike and consequently carries no moral justification, a more reasonable description would be a preventative strike, an action that has far more serious consequences and implications and no need for a claim to the moral high ground.


[This message has been edited by Crazy Eddie (03-09-2003 10:26 AM).]

JP
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28 posted 03-09-2003 10:35 AM       View Profile for JP   Email JP   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit JP's Home Page   View IP for JP

I could go on about this, debating points of view, points of issue, etc. However, I have neither the energy, nor the inclination to continue stating my POV (what I FEEL should be obvious to most rational beings)

I will comment on one or two small things:

"the point is only that facts are subjective."

Facts are not subjective, their very definition eleminates subjectivity.  It is our interpretation of the facts or our choice of how we choose to view the facts that is subjective.

"Are you speaking for the people who agree with you, that war is necessary? So, let me ask you this... how exactly do you 'know' what Saddam is capable of? Is this based on his past actions?"

The best indicator of future behavior is past behavior.  More often than not a person will act and react to a situation as they have done so in the past.  A valuable tool in interviewing "behavior based job interviewing" and a good rule of thumb to use when dealing with a murderous tyrant.


Ultimately I just have to reiterate:  Bush did not 'start' this - he may be leading the way and the only world leader with testicles hard enough to stand up for what he believes is the right thing to do and take action, but he did not start this - Saddam gets the prive for that.

Let's not confuse what is happening with a bunch of pointless personal attacks, nor should we equate this action with other military actions (Vietnam in particular), this is a horse of a different color.

Finally, try to take a step back from your emotions and look at what is going on and seperate it from knee-jerk emotional reactions and commentary.  Bush-bashing will not stop what is going to happen, being personally cruel and hurtful to someone (who will never hear you anyway) will do nothing more than diminish you.  A blot that you and I will have to live with.  We will need each other in the ensuing months.  We will need each others love, respect, support, and crying shoulder.... Let us not destroy that by insulting behavior led by confused and emotional outbursts resulting from our fear and confusion.


Yesterday is ash, tomorrow is smoke; only today does the fire burn.
Nil Desperandum, Fata viem invenient

hush
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since 05-27-2001
Posts 1693
Ohio, USA


29 posted 03-09-2003 11:08 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

JP-

Just a couple of things.

'how exactly do you 'know' what Saddam is capable of? Is this based on his past actions?"

The best indicator of future behavior is past behavior.  More often than not a person will act and react to a situation as they have done so in the past.'


More often than not isn't always. You can say that "More often than not a person will act and react to a situation as they have done so in the past" is a fact (that is, if you have statistics to back it up- still the fact might be debateable, but a very solid case for a fact is there.) However, you cannot claim that because one's actions are very often similar to their past actions, that we know what Saddam will do. We can predict, and like I said, I personally don't think he's going to show any remarkable turnaroud... on the other hand, somebody earlier remarked that the fact that he has been effectively contained for the last 12 years shows that containment is working... so doesn't it stand to reason that the last 12 years of behavior are more indicative than his aggressive behaviors before then? Granted, I realize that doesn't mean his actions within his own country are moral or right... but that's not the main argument for the war.

'Bush did not 'start' this - he may be leading the way and the only world leader with testicles hard enough to stand up for what he believes is the right thing to do and take action'

Because Bush/America thinks it's right, it is therefore right? Who do we have actually backing us besides Britain? This isn't rhetorical, I actually want to know.

Maybe Saddam thought he was right in invading Kuwait. I don't know how the guy thinks, what kind of rationalizations he used... but the mind is a funny thing. I believe Hitler's grudge against Jews started when he was rejected from an art school and all the Jewish shopowners refused to buy his work... By our standards, there's no way that justifies an attempted genocide.

But by most of the world's standards, the evidence doesn't justify war.

'Bush-bashing will not stop what is going to happen, being personally cruel and hurtful to someone...'

'We will need each others love, respect, support, and crying shoulder.... Let us not destroy that by insulting behavior led by confused and emotional outbursts resulting from our fear and confusion.'

I don't think anybody has bashed Bush in this thread? Am I bashing Bush by questioning what moral authority we have to attack another country?

I just want to say that I totally respect your opinion on the war... and also that I'm not necessarily taking a stand on it... I'm asking questions, because I don't know. Do I personally believe Saddam has weapons of mass destruction? Yes. Do I think he's capable of selling them to terrorists? Yes, I think it's a possibility... although I have read articles that attempt to demonstrate that Saddam and Al Qeuada have no known links. But there is possible danger lurking all over the world, and I just don't see what makes Iraq a more impending threat than anyone else.

I also have several suspicions that I can't quantify, but they're there all the same... why Saddam? What happenned to Osama? Are we going into a war to take the limelight off of our so-far failed attempted to capture bin Laden? Is Bush just trying to finish his daddy's work? Is he using post 9/11 fear to justify the war? Do we just want (rather than oil) a strategic positioning for a new Iraqi government we may control, directly or indirectly?

These aren't attacks, they're feelings I can't shake based upon the fact that I think the media is giving us only what we should hear, and that the government is always up to something it tries to hide from American people... so, whatever, we're going whether we like it or not, Bush has built this up so strongly that even if he wanted to back off, he can't now because he'll look like an idiot. It's out of our hands...
winston
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since 12-19-2002
Posts 213
NW of Eden


30 posted 03-09-2003 01:13 PM       View Profile for winston   Email winston   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for winston

There's no denying that Saddam Hussein is "terrible", "bad", "wrong", "evil", etc. We are all agreed on that. If we all can do that, then, surely, by logical necessity, we can come to agree that Jebediah & Katherine Bush & their supporters in Florida are guilty of vote rigging.
I have a personal story attached to this, a friend of mine, Jim, was told that he couldn't vote because coincidentally his first name added to his last name happened to be one of the names on Jeb's "felon list". Jim pleaded with the police but they just wouldn't let him go in and use his right to vote. Am a patriot in so far as I value diversity, and tolerate diversity that America was founded on, but I'll tell you this, am not the only American who isn't fooled easily.

It's amazing I won. I was running against peace, prosperity, & incumbency.
--G. "DUBYA" BUSH. June 14, 2001. Unaware of rolling TV camera.

[This message has been edited by winston (03-09-2003 01:17 PM).]

Denise
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31 posted 03-09-2003 02:10 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Kamla, Hugs right back at ya!   I disagree that facts are subjective. As others have said, I think it is our perceptions of those facts that can be subjective, but a fact remains a fact, by its very definition, depsite personal perceptions.

quote:
Supposition and innuendo are not FACTS.

Amen, Denise. And neither are judgements or imagination.


Point taken, Ron. Those on the right and left of the issue are capable of operating out of an emotional area based on their ideologies and perceptions of indisputable facts and I am just as vulnerable as anyone else. It's something that we all have to examine ourselves about and make adjustments where necessary.

From my vantage point, I see the right mostly operating from a position of suspicion (of the enemies of freedom) and fear (of our newly acquired sense of vulnerability post 9/11) and the left from a position of suspicion of and hatred for the current administration (certainly not all of them, but the majority that I personally have contact with).

I have no problem with those whose ideologies and interpretation of the facts lead them to be against war as a necessary next step, just as I have no problem with those, like Sharon, who are totally confused and conflicted, or with those who see war as the only answer to the current problem. The thing that I have a problem with is the "bashing" by some who are anti-war. Their position would be better advanced if they clearly stated their position, and their reasoning for their position, instead of spewing "hate rhetoric".

It seems that the line is drawn between those who believe that containment of Saddam is acceptable and the way to go, and those who believe that total disarmament, voluntary or involuntary, is the way to go.

I don't think that a valid case can be made that containment works when Saddam has been able to increase his production of weapons over the past 12 years.

Unless Saddam voluntarily disarms completely, I personally see war as necessary for world stability and safety, but I certainly respect the views of those who don't see it the same as I do (my sister among them). What I don't respect are the views of the "hate mongerers".

Winston, based upon which facts are we to logically conclude that the votes in Florida were rigged?

As for Jim, if he indeed is not a felon (felons lose their right to vote for life) and it is a case of mistaken identity, I'd advise him to take it up with his Representatives at the State and Federal level to clear up the issue so that he may vote in future elections.

I've also noticed in other posts of yours, Winston, that your spelling of certain words is not in typical American fashion (which was why I was surprised when I first read in a prior post that you were American), but after the U.K. fashion (such as favour instead of favor, for instance). Was the majority of your education abroad?


Crazy Eddie
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since 09-14-2002
Posts 221


32 posted 03-09-2003 03:33 PM       View Profile for Crazy Eddie   Email Crazy Eddie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Crazy Eddie


Denise,

quote:
but a fact remains a fact, by its very definition, depsite personal perceptions.


I disagree a fact doesnít always remain a fact, if it did progress would be impossible.  The fact that the earth was flat gave way to the fact that the earth was perfectly round which in turn gave way to the fact that the earth was sort of round but not quite. Each previous fact had valid reasoning and logical thought on itís side but still managed to be relegated to the category of the non-factual.

I also disagree that facts are facts despite personal perceptions, I believe facts are facts because of personal perceptions and when those perceptions change facts tend to change accordingly.

quote:
It seems that the line is drawn between those who believe that containment of Saddam is acceptable and the way to go, and those who believe that total disarmament, voluntary or involuntary, is the way to go.


I agree with this apart from the fact that I fall into the second category but am vehemently against war at this time. Perhaps a clearer categorisation would be.

Those that donít want a war at any cost
Those who think that war is the only option
Those who think that diplomacy must be given a chance

For the first time in my life I find myself openly admiring and supporting the French. Give Iraq a strict and attainable timetables for disarmament via the UN and monitored by the weapon inspectors and then bomb the hell out of them if they donít comply.

I donít think this would work though, Iíve a sneaky suspicion that removing the weapons of mass destruction isnít enough, I may be wrong of course, what do you think?

If Iraq surrendered all itís weapons of mass destruction tomorrow would the war be cancelled?

Tony Blair says it would but then again all Englishmen are liars.

Denise
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33 posted 03-09-2003 03:56 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Crazy Eddie,

Well, since the Earth was never flat, despite what most people believed, it can't be said that it was ever a 'fact'.

I'll go along with the added category. I personally believe though that diplomacy has been given a chance and it has failed.

I believe that by removing the weapons of mass destruction it would make this a safer world, not safe, but safer.

Yes, I do believe that the war would be 'cancelled' if Saddam completely disarmed, or put forth a believable good faith effort that he wishes to work out a time table for disarmament and/or accepted exile from Iraq. I don't think that we will see him doing anything of these things though, unfortunately.
Crazy Eddie
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since 09-14-2002
Posts 221


34 posted 03-09-2003 05:09 PM       View Profile for Crazy Eddie   Email Crazy Eddie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Crazy Eddie

Denise

So if it were discovered that a high ranking general subsequently arrested and punished by Saddam ordered the use of chemical weapons against civilians the fact quoted by Deer that he had used chemical weapons on civilians would not be, in fact, a fact. What if it turned out that he had ordered the chemical bombing but it wasnít civilians he bombed but a bunch of terrorists? Facts are transient in nature depending on the available evidence or the perception of the evidence that does exist, when the earth was believed to be flat it was held to be a fact, on the evidence Iíve read I believe Saddam did order the gassing of civilians in the same way that the people believed the earth was flat, neither is or was an indisputable fact.


quote:
Yes, I do believe that the war would be 'cancelled' if Saddam completely disarmed

Thatís interesting, George Bush seems to be demanding the removal of Saddam on moral grounds to free the oppressed people of Iraq from an evil dictator but if that isnít the case why not give the French suggestion of a reasonable fixed timetable of disarmament issued by the UN and overseen by the weapon inspectors a try?

quote:
I personally believe though that diplomacy has been given a chance and it has failed.

A good point but the diplomacy so far has given Saddam too much room to wriggle around in, a fixed and reasonable timetable makes it crystal clear that if he does not actively attempt to meet the targets the UN will bomb the hell out of him and Iraq. Diplomacy just needs another chance, letís take a look at those categories again:

Those that donít want a war at any cost

This group are unfortunately never likely to reach their goals.

Those who think that war is the only option

This group will get their way if diplomacy fails

Those who think that diplomacy must be given a chance

Which leaves the French, Germans, Russians and me in this group (anyone else?).

Most people believe that Iraq must disarm, every country bar one in the UN holds that conviction, the sticking point seems to be whether we give him another chance or give up trying and start a war. In my view thereís nothing to lose trying the French option, if he disarms weíve avoided war and if he doesnít weíve at least removed some of the weapons he could use against us if and when we do go in. An added bonus is that America would gain international respect that I believe theyíve lost for not supporting or entertaining such an option.


Balladeer
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35 posted 03-09-2003 05:15 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

"If we all can do that, then, surely, by logical necessity, we can come to agree that Jebediah & Katherine Bush & their supporters in Florida are guilty of vote rigging."

Logical necessity??? I can think of no better example to the fact that people will avoid, or be ignorant of, the facts and still make derrogatory statements than the above quote. If you had read Denise's earlier statement or if you knew the actual facts behind the Florida vote then you would not make such an irresponsible statement....or else you would be like millions of others and not let the facts matter. That is one of the biggest problems...people are willing to close their eyes to actual facts if they interfere with their own perspective....and they are eager to be insulting while doing it.
hush
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since 05-27-2001
Posts 1693
Ohio, USA


36 posted 03-09-2003 06:22 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

winston-

'There's no denying that Saddam Hussein is "terrible", "bad", "wrong", "evil", etc. We are all agreed on that.'

Hm, have you read this thread entirely? I don't agree with that. I'm sick and tired of people speaking for me on that issue... because someone's status as terrible or evil is not a fact, and unlike the cancer or medical scenarios, it cannot even be purported to be fact. "Everyone" does not agree to this- I have instantly challaenged your statement.

Change your statement.

Saddam is in material breach...

Or

Saddam hoardes the nations money to build palaces for himself whil his people starve.

These can be argued at face value because it's clear what is meant... but I'm going to argue that people are not evil... it's not your statement so much as that premise, which is overwhelmingly prevalent in this country, that bugs me.
Balladeer
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37 posted 03-09-2003 06:37 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

hush, with all due respect, be bugged if you wish but if you do not consider him evil then you have definitions of evil I am not familiar with. It is well documented that he has tortured and murdered many. It is also documented that he slaughtered thousand with poison gas. It is documented that one of his first acts was murdering all members of the government he felt were a threat to him. It is on film. The Kurds have a museum displaying the atrosities committed by his troops under his command. They show pictures of small children being shot to death...having been tickled seconds before so that they would be laughing when they died. This is documented. He killed members of his own family for betraying him. He set the Kuwait oil fields on fire. There are so many crimes and atrocities attributed to him - and documented - that I find it inconceiveable that anyone could not consider this man truly evil.
Brad
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since 08-20-99
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Jejudo, South Korea


38 posted 03-09-2003 07:12 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

This is deeply disturbing:

quote:
Ultimately I just have to reiterate:  Bush did not 'start' this - he may be leading the way and the only world leader with testicles hard enough to stand up for what he believes is the right thing to do and take action, but he did not start this - Saddam gets the prive for that.


quote:
'Finally, try to take a step back from your emotions and look at what is going on and seperate it from knee-jerk emotional reactions and commentary.


Tetosterone means unemotional?

Do me a favor, don't get angry at this, listen to yourself.


JP
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since 05-25-99
Posts 1391
Loomis, CA


39 posted 03-10-2003 02:17 AM       View Profile for JP   Email JP   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit JP's Home Page   View IP for JP

Me? Angry? Never.

I'm allowed emotion too ya know.  I do try to subjugate it with logic once in a while however.  Yes, I do get a bit frustrated and spew stupidity from time to time, so when I found myself beating my fist against a wall... well, I bowed out, ungracefully it seems...

I'm still bothered that some here seem to confuse facts with information or misinformation.  The earth in spherical in shape, always has been, just because the information of the age caused people to believe it was flat didn't make flatness a fact.  Belief and fact are entirely seperate things, hopefully we can believe the facts and not the assumptions of what we wish to be...

Thanks for calling me on my error Brad.

Yesterday is ash, tomorrow is smoke; only today does the fire burn.
Nil Desperandum, Fata viem invenient

Ron
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40 posted 03-10-2003 06:29 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Balladeer said:
quote:
There are so many crimes and atrocities attributed to him - and documented - that I find it inconceivable that anyone could not consider this man truly evil.

Semantics suck, but they're still important because they allow us to communicate effectively. If a man is six foot five most of the time, but haphazardly shrinks down to four foot three part of the time, is it semantically correct to call him a "tall man?" Of course, that's a ridiculous questions because a man's height, unlike his character, doesn't fluctuate with circumstances.

People are neither good nor evil, but are a blend of each. In vastly different proportions, of course. In my opinion, it is semantically questionable to call a person good or evil. Those qualifiers are best left to the actions of a person.

Still, I rather suspect even that isn't what Amy really means.

Ever read the biography of Al Capone? That guy did a lot of very evil things in his life. And he seemingly could justify every single one of them, because of what had been done to him. Alphonse "Scarface" Capone did not see himself as evil, and I seriously doubt that Saddam or Adolph or any other man in history ever got out of bed in the morning and said, "Gee, I think I'll do something truly evil today." That's not human nature, not even among sociopaths.

Is that really an important distinction, though? I think it is, because the minute we label someone, we tend to look no deeper. You can't understand a man if you first insist on putting a mask on him. About 2,500 years ago, Sun Tzu recognized the folly of that.

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.  If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.


JP said:
quote:
The earth is spherical in shape, always has been, just because the information of the age caused people to believe it was flat didn't make flatness a fact.

But isn't that exactly the point, JP?

Was Queen Isabella as sure of her "facts" in 1490 as many people seem to be today? If asked to prove her facts, how would she have responded? "Well, everyone knows the Earth is flat. It's a fact." Gee, that kinda sounds familiar, doesn't it?

Deductions and hearsay may be true, but that alone doesn't make them facts. Have you personally seen our planet from outer space? How do you know, for a fact, that it is spherical? Can you show me the math that proves it? Those things we often tout as facts are as much a reflection of our trust as they are of truth. We believe the Earth is spherical because we trust the people who have repeatedly told us it is spherical. We trust the consensus (just as did Isabella), and we trust science (just as did Isabella). And I dare say, by and large, science has earned our trust.

But is it really so surprising, when it comes to politics and society, that the consensus isn't always unanimous and the trust isn't always so easy to give?
Balladeer
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41 posted 03-10-2003 09:18 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Actually, Ron, I did read the Al Capone book and that is exactly how he did feel. Not only that but, if you go through history, I think you will find that every "evil" personage could justify their actions to themselves. Hitler did not believe he was evil but that he was doing the best for Germany and the Aryan race. DIllinger felt he was striking a blow for the little man. If you go down the list through Stalin, Mao and Jeffrey Dalhmer, they will all come up with justifications of why they were so misunderstood. So what? That is the main problem with hush's idea to sit Hussein down, convince him that killing is not good and have him change into a responsible decent human being. People who feel that their actions are not wrong and justifiable will not change....why should they? If I decide that, by killing people over 65 I am doing them a big favor by releasing them from the time they will get sick, have their bodies start failing them, go through the trauma to them and their families of hospital stays, operations, incapatation, loss of memory and faculties, all of these things which come, and with no solution since death is inevitable, wouldn't I be in essence their savior by saving their going through all these hardships? Does the fact that I can justify it make it acceptable? I doubt it. As you say, it's the actions that speak...not the self-justifications. Someone has to stand up and say "This is wrong". I think one of the biggest goofs of the judicial system was when they began allowing the "no contest" defense. That permits the defendants to be convicted and still not have to claim or accept their guilt. No one who refuses to acknowledge their guilt is ever going to change. Why should they since they are not wrong in their own mind? I do not see Hussein acknowledging his.

As far as you example of facts and the Earth not being flat, I don't find that one of your better examples. By what facts did she base her assumptions that the earth was flat, that "there be dragons" at the edge of the earth? Obviously, none. We have seen that the earth is NOT flat through a variety of means. No, you're right, I haven't personally seen earth from outer space...does that mean I can ignore, or distrust, the photos and factual nature of those who have? Why should I? Should I only trust what my eyes have seen...period? Should I consider cancer a lie because I personally have never seen a chest open in front of me infected with cancer? Isabella had no facts at her disposal so she went by assumations. We have millions of facts at our disposal - yes, from others but documented. If we choose not to accept then because we personally haven't seen it then we may as well throw all textbooks and journals in the trash, since they all  describe things we personally haven't seen. The earth is spherical. It is a fact now as it was a fact then. Now we have proof to support it as opposed to then when there was none...that doesn't change it just because most of us haven't seen it personally. A fact will always be a fact.

Ask Ayn....she'll tell you
Local Rebel
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since 12-21-1999
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42 posted 03-10-2003 12:59 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

While I agree with the premise that there are many 'evil' men who feel justified in their actions -- I also know there are those who delight in atrocity for the sake of atrocity -- those who are so disconnected from the universe that they act out of pure spite.

ShadowLost
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since 06-23-2001
Posts 48


43 posted 03-10-2003 01:18 PM       View Profile for ShadowLost   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for ShadowLost

If the US hates the middle east so much how did such a small part of the world become soo agressive and defensive towards us???  

~ShadowLost~
winston
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since 12-19-2002
Posts 213
NW of Eden


44 posted 03-10-2003 02:32 PM       View Profile for winston   Email winston   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for winston

Well, Denise, I've noticed that you've spelt despite as "depsite" here, that's un-yoozhal wudn't yo'say? As far as ah know I've never used the word "favour" on any of my posts but I mighta yoozed "color" as it's used in conventional AmericanEnglish.

I cude on the basis of cacography & cacology that I've countenanced at PIPtalk go on to say that nobody is American enough (as it's understood by the Injuns).

hush, "" these before and after a word has an objectival purpose when spicking of emotive words. So, I can't quite intuit what was your point.

My good Balladeer, as far as I know I've not insulted anybody here. Neither have I expressed "hate" or "anger".


It's amazing I won. I was running against peace, prosperity, & incumbency.
--G. "DUBYA" BUSH. June 14, 2001. Unaware of rolling TV camera.


[This message has been edited by winston (03-10-2003 02:53 PM).]

Denise
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since 08-22-99
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45 posted 03-10-2003 02:45 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

So much for a straight answer to a straight question.
Crazy Eddie
Member
since 09-14-2002
Posts 221


46 posted 03-10-2003 03:23 PM       View Profile for Crazy Eddie   Email Crazy Eddie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Crazy Eddie


Balladeer

quote:
A fact will always be a fact.


Iím the King of England.

Is that a fact?

Most people would agree that it isnít but supposing tomorrow it was discovered that I had a legitimate claim to the throne and at some point in the future I was actually crowned king, would it be a fact then? Of course it would, just to complicate things though letís say that three days after my coronation it was discovered that a mistake had been made and I abdicated, would it be a fact at that point?

Facts are dictated by the perceived truth at any given time and truth is based upon the best information available, an absolute fact requires an absolute truth - which has never existed. Unconvinced?

The earth moves around the Sun

This has to be a cast iron example of an absolute fact, right? At this point in time it is a fact and has been for a fair few years but it hasnít always been so and it will not be a fact at some point in the future.

It is an indisputable fact the Hussein has used biological weapons to murder civilians.

The truth-value attributable to this statement is either true or false, he either did it or he didnít, letís imagine for a moment that almost all the evidence we look at leads us to believe he did do it (not much imagination needed I agree). Does that mean he actually did do it or that based upon the evidence we have seen we believe he did?

You said earlier (paraphrasing here) that it didnít matter what evidence we thought we had a fact was a fact only if it was true. If your assertion is correct all the evidence in the world is irrelevant, the only thing that matters is whether he did it or didnít do it. In that case:

It is an indisputable fact the Hussein has not used biological weapons to murder civilians.

Is as valid a fact as any other until we know the truth, which is why ďbeyond reasonable doubtĒ is often used in places where truth is the target.

By the way, as Iíve said before, I believe he did use chemical weapons to kill civilians but I also accept I might be wrong.
Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


47 posted 03-10-2003 04:24 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Should I only trust what my eyes have seen...period?

No, of course not, Michael. But neither should you call everything that everyone tells you a fact.

Remember when professors at the University of Utah announced their "successful" cold fusion experiments in 1989? Fleischmann and Pons ended up standing before the US House Science, Space and Technology committee asking for $25 million to fund a center for cold fusion Ö and almost got it. Science, for a few moments of current history, lied to us and the press gleefully perpetuated the lie. And yes, that tawdry incident hurt the credibility of scientists everywhere.

Now, you want to talk about how many times a politician has lied to us?

Sans personal knowledge, a fact is only as credible as the source. My trust in science is less than a hundred percent, my trust in the press is quite a bit less than a hundred percent, and my trust in politicians evaporated over thirty years ago. I don't personally have knowledge of what Iraq has in its arsenal, nor do I know how Iraq intends to use what it has. I have to trust others for that information. And, to a large extent, I do. But please forgive me if I call it information instead of facts.

BTW, Isabella knew the Earth was round in 1490, as did most of the literate world. I was just playing off of JP's words, and making liberal use of literary license in doing so. The real question when Columbus set sail wasn't whether he would fall off the edge, but how long the journey would take. Science knew the Earth was round, but there were huge disagreements about how big it was. Still, your question is a valid one, because a hundred years earlier, everyone DID believe the Earth was flat. On what "facts" did they base that assumption? Fact: Everywhere they walked was flat. Fact: Every ocean they traveled was flat. Fact: For as far as the human eye could see, the land was flat. If you're honest with yourself, those are pretty persuasive facts. If I had to live in Iowa, they might still be pretty persuasive.  

quote:
No one who refuses to acknowledge their guilt is ever going to change. Why should they since they are not wrong in their own mind? I do not see Hussein acknowledging his.

I have absolutely no interest in changing Sadam Hussein. I would like to understand him.

Maybe human nature is such that we can never really prevent the kind of debacle that is current events. Maybe the next ruler we sell arms to will, a few decades hence, become our next national nightmare. Maybe. But I also believe Sun Tzu, in his Art of War, was right on probably more levels than even he realized. Know thine enemy. We cannot defeat Sadam Hussein unless we first know what drives him, what justifications he finds for himself, what viewpoint he hold towards us and the rest of the world. We can kill him, and it seems clear to me that we will, but without greater understanding, his death will not be his defeat. He will only rise again, with a new face, a new name, and exactly the same agenda. Understanding probably can't stop this from ever happening again. But it's the only weapon that might.


Balladeer
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since 06-05-99
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Ft. Lauderdale, Fl USA


48 posted 03-10-2003 07:47 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Winston....forgive me, I was not insinuating you were insulting to anyone here. Your responses are sincere and dignified. I was referring to the statement...

"we can come to agree that Jebediah & Katherine Bush & their supporters in Florida are guilty of vote rigging."

...which struck me as being on the insulting side to those involved, not anyone here. My apologies for not being clearer...

Eddie...yes, a fact is always a fact but that certainly doesn't mean that facts, based on actions or conditions, can never change. Those facts are always changing but, at the time they are true, they are the fact of the moment. Bush is president. That's a fact. In the future another will be president and that will also be a fact at that time. As far as the sun is concerned, I cannot recall the time the earth did not revolve around the sun and I sure as heck don't want to see the time in the future it does not, either. But, should that time come then it will be a fact at that time. It will not change the fact that at this time it DID. Irrefutable proof is what makes a fact, not opinions or conclusions based on opinions. If the earth had, indeed, been flat at one time and could have been proven to be so then it would have been a fact at that time. Their opinion that it was flat without irrefutable proof to back that conclusion would not have made it a fact, only a consensus of opinion. It is certainly a fact that they believed so because we have the evidence to back that statement.

Ron...
"We can kill him, and it seems clear to me that we will, but without greater understanding, his death will not be his defeat. He will only rise again, with a new face, a new name, and exactly the same agenda. Understanding probably can't stop this from ever happening again. But it's the only weapon that might."

Wise words, good sir. Personally, I feel that understanding is beyond our comprehension with the exception of the basis that his driving force is power and, as LR states, I also believe true evil does indeed exist. Other than that, it would be like my trying to discover how the mind of a child molestor works. How could I, not being able to relate to that type of mind? How could anyone? You want to find someone who can understand Hussein? Try Caligula or Stalin or Mao Tse Tung or someone who has walked in those shoes. They would understand him perfectly. Donald Trump would also be a good example, not that I have anything against The Donald (which I don't) but he has the same drive and ambition that motivates dictators except that he channels his into wheeling/dealing and making money instead of maintaining absolute power over an entire country. There have always been Husseins throughout history and there will always be. The only solution I can see is to stop them before they have the opportunity to begin...which would mean eliminating dictatorships, for one thing. I would think that the United Nations would be an excellent way maintaining this type of control. It's a wonderful idea - all of the major governments with all of their economic and military powers making sure that ruthless dictators do not have the ability to rule countries by torture, murder and intimidation. Makes sense to me...but what do we have? We have the U.N. but we still have countries with ruthless dictators who rule by fear over a powerless populace. How can that be? A true United Nations could eliminate this and ensure that no future Husseins are able to get their hands on this type of power. That is the only way to stop this recurring insanity which has surfaced every so often since recorded history began. There needs to be a world police force capable, and willing, to assume this role. On any other level, our understanding of this type of individual - which is unlikely - would not help. As grandma used to say - when you've got them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow.

As soon as I am elected King of the Universe, I plan on putting my thoughts into action


Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


49 posted 03-10-2003 08:53 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

JP,

Wow, you took that really well. Of course you can be emotional, the only problem I have is that everyone is being 'emotional', on the Right and the Left. At another site (philosophyforums.com), I'm arguing against both. I don't know if I'm being any less emotional than anyone else, I just think people, everywhere, are running around looking for facts (reasons) to back up their conviction rather than the other way around.

Can you do the other way around?

Probably not, I don't have any problems with Michael's view of facts. It's easy to make the distinction between facts and our knowledge of facts (which is what Crazyeddie and Ron are arguing), but then of course you can't argue from the facts directly, you can only argue from our knowledge of facts.

I don't think this contradicts Michael's point so much is deflate the rhetorically persuasive power of words like 'facts,' and 'truth'. But it still leaves the distinction between getting things right v. mistakes and outright deceit which is what I think he's shooting for here.

And that's an important distinction to keep, for without it, we wouldn't be able to talk at all.  

But not only that, we have a further problem because all facts are not created equal. Some are more significant than others for whatever argument you want to make:

There may have been a fly on the wall when Powell made his speech at the UN but it's not significant for what we're talking about.

This isn't simply a matter of preference (which is apparent enough), we are finite creatures and we have to do this in order to make any argument at all.

What does this have to do with the issue at hand? Probably not much, but maybe, just maybe, it opens up the possibility for more discussion. If we take the two positions here to extremes, we still end up with the same result (and I've said this enough times before, this shouldn't surprise anybody):

1. Facts are facts. You can't argue with facts. If you do, you must have an agenda, you must be distorting the truth for your own purposes.

result: They are WRONG before they say anything. You don't have to listen to what other people have to say

2. Facts are subjective and malleable. My facts aren't your facts, we look at the world in fundamentally different ways and there is no way you can ever see my view and vice versa.

result: THEY are wrong before they say anything. You don't have to listen to what other people have to say.

Now, these are caricatures of the actual positions taken, but the result is still the same: everybody's talking and nobody's listening.

In the end, JP's response to me seems to be the right way to go. Make your statement, believe in it, defend it, but listen to what other people have to say. If they have a good argument or see a weak point in your own, use that and become stronger for it. We're not going convert anybody around here overnight and that's the way it should be.

Indeed, the people to worry about are the ones who are converted overnight.

 
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