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The Old Hack

Political Discussion Thread (READ FIRST POST)

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10 hours ago, HarJIT said:

Errrrm....

@The Old Hack, what is the present ruling on making EU Referendum remarks outside the Politics thread?

Edit: this might, of course, impact the acceptability of my present avatar also.

Huh, I didn't know there was a politics thread...
Welp, there goes my spare time!

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15 hours ago, HarJIT said:

Errrrm....

@The Old Hack, what is the present ruling on making EU Referendum remarks outside the Politics thread?

Edit: this might, of course, impact the acceptability of my present avatar also.

The EU thing about your avatar would not have dawned on me if you had not said anything.  I looked at it and thought Tedd, with stars.  Must be getting ready to take his super cute form.  Now, of course, I see what it is but, like I have said, sometimes I can be a bit slow on some things.

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On 25/06/2016 at 11:43 PM, partner555 said:

Are there any British people here? What's your opinion on these things?

Yeah, I'm here.

I'm honestly not surprised at the close results for the referendum. You can not measure freedom in gold, but you can't eat it either.

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Yes--the people who say "Give me Liberty or give me Death" need to stay aware that there is always a chance that they will get Death.

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On 5/11/2016 at 5:16 PM, partner555 said:

http://thenewdaily.com.au/news/2016/05/10/kirralie-smith-waleed-aly/

The woman mentioned in the article has made accusations that can be PROVEN to be just plain wrong, AND contradicted her accusation at the end.

As a Muslim, I don't know which is worse, the extremist elements within my religion, or the anti-Islam people like her who make baseless and factually wrong accusations.

Just saw this.

Don't want to put you on the spot but can we (meaning me) bounce questions off you?  It's one thing to be on the outside looking in and another to talk to someone on the inside looking out.

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1 hour ago, Myranuse said:

Yeah, I'm here.

I'm honestly not surprised at the close results for the referendum. You can not measure freedom in gold, but you can't eat it either.

If the UK were to hold another referendum on EU membership, a fair vote would need to wait for 2-3 years.  An unfair vote would be as close to immediate as is possible.

All the bad implications of the vote occur at once and the advantages make themselves known over time.  Of course the Pound is dropping now.  Markets don't like instability or change and there's backfill work to do in order to rebuild the parts of life that the EU took care of.  Once that work is done things might not look so bad (but could).

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1 hour ago, Vorlonagent said:

Just saw this.

Don't want to put you on the spot but can we (meaning me) bounce questions off you?  It's one thing to be on the outside looking in and another to talk to someone on the inside looking out.

I do not normally enter here but this time it is to make a book recommendation. If you want to learn more, allow me to commend Arsalan Iftikhar's book 'Scapegoats' to your attention. It is an excellent introduction to the topic of Islamophobia and well worth a read.

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17 minutes ago, The Old Hack said:

I do not normally enter here but this time it is to make a book recommendation. If you want to learn more, allow me to commend Arsalan Iftikhar's book 'Scapegoats' to your attention. It is an excellent introduction to the topic of Islamophobia and well worth a read.

There's so many more interesting things to ask about than islamophobia.  Partner555 has been on this board longer than I have but his mindset seems close to mine.  I trust that I'll get honesty from him.  What I'm interested in are questions like the following:

Does he have any thoughts on the recent run of attacks in the US and Europe by radical muslims?  Does one aspect about them stand out?

The US government seems reluctant to put the words "radical" and "islam" together in public for fear of alienating muslims.  How does this play to real muslims?

These sorts of questions touch on islamophobia to be sure but don't really file under the heading. 

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3 hours ago, Vorlonagent said:

There's so many more interesting things to ask about than islamophobia. 

...

 

...

 

...

 

...that's a little bit like saying that you want to talk about fish but that you have absolutely no interest in the watery environment they are swimming in.

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I'm not sure I buy that analogy.

When it comes to Islamic Terror and the West, there's a whole ecosystem here and I want to talk about more than one species of fish in it.  Especially something else than the one that has been talked to death the most and is most prone to flame wars if used in a Fish Slap Dance.

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3 hours ago, Vorlonagent said:

Does he have any thoughts on the recent run of attacks in the US and Europe by radical muslims?  Does one aspect about them stand out?

They're monsters who must be brought to justice. Unfortunately, the thing about suicide bombers is that they tend to be too dead to be brought to justice. The only consolation is that they can't hurt more people since they're dead.

3 hours ago, Vorlonagent said:

The US government seems reluctant to put the words "radical" and "islam" together in public for fear of alienating muslims.  How does this play to real muslims?

I'm not sure actually. I haven't seen the commentary for myself. That being said, we have extremists hiding behind whatever ideology they want to use, be it a religious faith or other belief.

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1 hour ago, partner555 said:

They're monsters who must be brought to justice. Unfortunately, the thing about suicide bombers is that they tend to be too dead to be brought to justice. The only consolation is that they can't hurt more people since they're dead.

Do the cleric(s) at your mosque address these attacks in their sermons? (or other times for that matter...)  If so, what do they say?  What range of opinion do you hear from your fellow muslims?  There's going to be a normal curve of reactions.  Is this affected at all by ethnicity or nation of birth?

 

1 hour ago, partner555 said:

I'm not sure actually. I haven't seen the commentary for myself. That being said, we have extremists hiding behind whatever ideology they want to use, be it a religious faith or other belief.

Agreed...or no ideology whatsoever.  But for good or ill, Islam has a place in the spotlight few other ideologies have.  You provide me an opportunity to process it in a way I could not by myself.  Again, only if and what you are comfortable answering.  I want to learn from you, not cause you any discomfort or alienation.

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2 hours ago, Vorlonagent said:

I'm not sure I buy that analogy.

When it comes to Islamic Terror and the West, there's a whole ecosystem here and I want to talk about more than one species of fish in it.  Especially something else than the one that has been talked to death the most and is most prone to flame wars if used in a Fish Slap Dance.

Unfortunately, that is precisely what you are doing by rejecting Islamophobia as part of the topic. I am not saying that Islamophobia is all you should look at. Merely that by excluding it and refusing to examine it, you are acting much like a man who wants to know everything about submarines except anything that involves water.

The book I recommended you contains many of the answers you are looking for. It is entirely up to you whether you want to read it or not. I just wish you wouldn't allow a single word you don't like to scare you away from it.

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1 hour ago, Vorlonagent said:

Do the cleric(s) at your mosque address these attacks in their sermons? (or other times for that matter...)  If so, what do they say?  What range of opinion do you hear from your fellow muslims?  There's going to be a normal curve of reactions.  Is this affected at all by ethnicity or nation of birth?

I remember the Imam denouncing them when they declared they made a caliphate. I can't remember whether he said anything about the slavery issue. He has also touched on extremism. However, that being said, I am unable to attend all of his sermons because of work.

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At least three police officers are being reported as shot while providing security for a protest march through downtown Dallas tonight. Shots allegedly came from a parking garage toward the police and the marchers. At this time, no protestors have been reported injured – only police appear to have been targeted. Reports are still coming in.

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Dallas Police have just released a statement:

Two snipers allegedly shot ten Dallas Police and Dallas Area Rapid Transit police officers during tonight's protest in downtown.
Three officers are deceased.
Two more are in surgery.
Three more are in critical condition.

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Latest reports:

The casualty count has increased to eleven.
Four officers have now died.
A standoff is in progress in a downtown building with an alleged suspect.

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17 hours ago, The Old Hack said:

Unfortunately, that is precisely what you are doing by rejecting Islamophobia as part of the topic. I am not saying that Islamophobia is all you should look at. Merely that by excluding it and refusing to examine it, you are acting much like a man who wants to know everything about submarines except anything that involves water.

The book I recommended you contains many of the answers you are looking for. It is entirely up to you whether you want to read it or not. I just wish you wouldn't allow a single word you don't like to scare you away from it.

Where I come from, "Islamophobia" is an epithet most often used to shut down debate and attack anybody with an unflattering view of any part of Islam.  It is a word I am very weary of.  I don't see a non-violent solution to islamic terrorism.  In many eyes, that alone makes me deserving of being called an "Islamophobe".

On top of that, my time is limited and my reading speed slow.  It sounds like you are recommending to me a book that either is a concentrated dose of finger-wagging at me or detailed information the important basics of which I already know.

Of course islamophobia must exist.  Terroism's stock in trade is fear, uncertainty, doubt.  In that environment, of course, people feeling uncertain and powerless will turn on local muslims, or turn on people who might "look like muslims" such as Siekhs.  It is my responsibility to keep my normal, expected xenophobic tendencies in check and be as rational about the subject as I can. 

In my mind people are people and that includes muslims.  Muslims aren't demons or indoctrinated cultists.  Most muslims just like most other people.  They are just trying to get through their lives and make things a little better each day.  The question is how to deal with the muslims that are out on one arm of the normal cure, on the fringes where "live and let live" no longer applies.  Especially when they are increasingly deciding to bring that attitude over here.

I'm sure there's a lot details in Mr. Iftikhar's book I am not aware of.  But are there any themes I'm missing?  If Skapegoats' page on on Amazon is any judge I am missing out on a whole lot of finger-wagging and am happy to miss out on.  The advert for the book takes time out to hate on the usual suspects like Fox News, so if people like that are delighted by the book, it reinforces the impression that it is a mass of well-researched boilerplate ideology.  Once again, my time is limited.

Moreover the subject of Terroism transcends the treatment of musims in the West.  In dealing with the fragment on one part of the normal curve, it's important for me to fill in my ignorance with knowledge from a source I trust.  I know Partner555.  I don't know Mr. Iftikhar, but a quick 5 minute google-introduction doesn't give me much confidence in his impartiality.

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14 minutes ago, Vorlonagent said:

Where I come from, "Islamophobia" is an epithet most often used to shut down debate and attack anybody with an unflattering view of any part of Islam.  It is a word I am very weary of.  I don't see a non-violent solution to islamic terrorism.  In many eyes, that alone makes me deserving of being called an "Islamophobe".

On top of that, my time is limited and my reading speed slow.  It sounds like you are recommending to me a book that either is a concentrated dose of finger-wagging at me or detailed information the important basics of which I already know.

Of course islamophobia must exist.  Terroism's stock in trade is fear, uncertainty, doubt.  In that environment, of course, people feeling uncertain and powerless will turn on local muslims, or turn on people who might "look like muslims" such as Siekhs.  It is my responsibility to keep my normal, expected xenophobic tendencies in check and be as rational about the subject as I can. 

In my mind people are people and that includes muslims.  Muslims aren't demons or indoctrinated cultists.  Most muslims just like most other people.  They are just trying to get through their lives and make things a little better each day.  The question is how to deal with the muslims that are out on one arm of the normal cure, on the fringes where "live and let live" no longer applies.  Especially when they are increasingly deciding to bring that attitude over here.

I'm sure there's a lot details in Mr. Iftikhar's book I am not aware of.  But are there any themes I'm missing?  If Skapegoats' page on on Amazon is any judge I am missing out on a whole lot of finger-wagging and am happy to miss out on.  The advert for the book takes time out to hate on the usual suspects like Fox News, so if people like that are delighted by the book, it reinforces the impression that it is a mass of well-researched boilerplate ideology.  Once again, my time is limited.

Moreover the subject of Terroism transcends the treatment of musims in the West.  In dealing with the fragment on one part of the normal curve, it's important for me to fill in my ignorance with knowledge from a source I trust.  I know Partner555.  I don't know Mr. Iftikhar, but a quick 5 minute google-introduction doesn't give me much confidence in his impartiality.

Then there is nothing more to say. I am saddened that this is how you see things but I will not further intrude on you with a viewpoint you find unacceptable.

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What's the difference between a politician and a house plant?

Every so often the politician opens it's mouth and fertilizes itself.

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You know, some days I really get tired of the hate showered indisciminantly on politicians.  Or lawyers, or used car salesmen, or any other entire profession.

The vast majority of people who run for an elected office do it because they honestly want to make the world, or at least their corner of it, a better place.  They start out with something local, they see an injustice, and they step up and try to do something to fix it.  Whether they succeed or not, they discover that they can indeed make a difference, or that inaction allows injustice to continue, and they carry on trying to make a difference.  Sometimes they have to give up a promising career in some other field, or time with their families, or put up with insults from total strangers who know nothing about them but just assume they must be crooked.

Not everyone agreed on what will make the world a better place.  I know I'm not going to approve of all the changes every politician wants to make.  Some of them want to make changes I would find horrific.  But I don't automatically assume they're evil and trying to commit crimes, I assume that they see the world differently and that it might even be possible for them to change their minds someday about the things we disagree about.

The current system makes it easy to make compromises for the sake of the greater good.  Some of those compromises are moral ones, and some politicians end up on a slippery slope towards doing things they never intended, but I do not believe that is the overwhelming majority so many people seem to think it is.

The term "career politician" is treated like it's one of the worst insults you can hurl, but why?  Like any job, there are doubtless tricks of the trade, things you learn how to do better and better with more practice.  Some people casually advocate a "throw 'em all out!" attitude.  Why would we want our country to be run by a group of people none of whom have any experience at doing so?  Seems to me the best way is to have some new members and some veterans to show them the ropes and provide continuity.  Like, you know, any other business/profession/skill set.

Are we really so cynical and pessimistic and even nihilistic that we'd each rather just assume everyone in the world is evil except ourselves?

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True, I don't think most of them start off bad but, in the US system at least, they end up having to compromise themselves so often that very few end up with any credibility even if they are still relatively benign.

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Pretty much "you must bow to the Party platform if you want the Party to vote for any of your proposals". Otherwise, good luck trying to get any bills passed.

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