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Carol the Dabbler

The Political Thread

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1 hour ago, Arcadia said:

Why do people think he would lie that much about some things, but not lie to them? *sigh*

I was asking myself the same, but finally I think they don't care if it's true, as long as it serves their goals and confirms their believes.

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15 hours ago, Arcadia said:

Why do people think he would lie that much about some things, but not lie to them? 

 

14 hours ago, J.P. said:

I was asking myself the same, but finally I think they don't care if it's true, as long as it serves their goals and confirms their believes.

This and Covid makes me realize how bad is the street IQ of the world. Unlike me, Sherlock knows this all along, for more than a century. That's why he is a great detective and I'm a struggling nobody.

 

On another note, I just found out the existence of Diet Coke button, when it's pressed, it would summon butler with Diet Coke on silver platter. At leasr it's not Nuke button.

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246f69137c2a1b18ec4f28ee5726d145bc70522b

 

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This is my favorite. My feet looks exactly the same with Keanu's; the jeans, I have same shoes, three pairs, two colors, and I could never get my jeans-shoe connection symmetrical, it almost always ends up like this.

images.jpg

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15 hours ago, J.P. said:

I think they don't care if it's true, as long as it serves their goals and confirms their believes.

That seems to be true of people in general.  Politicians will often say something that they surely know is "not quite true," as long as they think people will believe it, and it will further their goals.  And people are more likely to believe statements made by someone (for example, a politician) they generally agree with, and more likely to disbelieve statements made by someone they generally disagree with.

It's just that such statements are a whole lot easier to spot if you already disagree with the person saying them.  Let me give you a non-political example of that from right here on the forum, shortly after Series 3 aired.  One of the other moderators and I were PMing about some of the hubbub on certain threads, and she mentioned one member she thought was being particularly obnoxious.  I responded that I didn't find that member nearly as annoying as a certain other one.  It turned out that my fellow mod had not even noticed a blatantly unsupported statement that the latter member kept repeating, simply because she (the mod) agreed with that member in general, and was therefore not in a critical frame of mind when reading those posts.  We were each far less critical of the member that we were in basic agreement with, even though both were admittedly being truly obnoxious.

Humans are like that.

 

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It annoys me and I really try not to be like that!

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On 1/23/2021 at 4:09 PM, J.P. said:

I did watch, kind of while working. It felt… hard to find a word for this - no nonsense, not more than necessary. Was really moved watching Kamala's beaming face.
And it felt like an end to a long and annoying cramp.

I'm not expecting Biden to be an angel, I know for many people he is only the less of two evils. But I'm okay with this.

BTW, it seems I was right so far about the MAGA movement dropping Trump after January 6th. I hope you can see the article, it was behind the paywall so I had to save it elsewhere.
https://221cblog.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/e28098a-total-failure-the-proud-boys-now-mock-trump-the-new-york-times.pdf

Good, I hope they'll crawl back to their mother's basement where they belong.

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6 hours ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

That seems to be true of people in general.  Politicians will often say something that they surely know is "not quite true," as long as they think people will believe it, and it will further their goals.  And people are more likely to believe statements made by someone (for example, a politician) they generally agree with, and more likely to disbelieve statements made by someone they generally disagree with.

It's just that such statements are a whole lot easier to spot if you already disagree with the person saying them.  Let me give you a non-political example of that from right here on the forum, shortly after Series 3 aired.  One of the other moderators and I were PMing about some of the hubbub on certain threads, and she mentioned one member she thought was being particularly obnoxious.  I responded that I didn't find that member nearly as annoying as a certain other one.  It turned out that my fellow mod had not even noticed a blatantly unsupported statement that the latter member kept repeating, simply because she (the mod) agreed with that member in general, and was therefore not in a critical frame of mind when reading those posts.  We were each far less critical of the member that we were in basic agreement with, even though both were admittedly being truly obnoxious.

Humans are like that.

 

True ... but in Trump's case, his statements were being fact-checked by professionals whose job it is to verify the accuracy of what he said. Were a lot of them also in disagreement with Trump's goals? Probably, but if you read the fact check columns, they're also pretty good at their research; the lies are there to be seen, regardless of how one feels about them.

Unless someone has been convinced that the press, as a whole, are actually the liars ... 

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4 hours ago, Arcadia said:

True ... but in Trump's case, his statements were being fact-checked by professionals whose job it is to verify the accuracy of what he said. Were a lot of them also in disagreement with Trump's goals? Probably, but if you read the fact check columns, they're also pretty good at their research; the lies are there to be seen, regardless of how one feels about them.

Unless someone has been convinced that the press, as a whole, are actually the liars ...

These days, it seems like everybody (including those in the public eye) has a personal point of view that colors their analyses, and that most certainly includes the media -- just decide what you want to hear and pick your news outlets accordingly!  I would call very few people liars, but everyone has their way of looking at things, and they do have certain people they believe and certain people they don't.

Trump tends to be sloppy, and also makes pointless "jokes."  My experience with Biden is pretty much limited to watching the debates, but he said one thing that even I knew was demonstrably false, so at best it had not been fact-checked.  People are presumably far more likely to fact-check what their opponent says than what they themselves say.

I find myself pining for the days of bipartisan compromises and Walter Cronkhite's straightforward news reports -- and wondering whether that era was just an anomaly, and we're now reverting to the normal human condition.  *sigh*

 

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Carol, may I ask you a question, and I promise I'm asking this out of honest curiosity? (you're of course free to ignore me if it comes across wrong, which I'm trying my hardest not to, but politics is a dicey topic - in fact, I'd rather you ignore this than become offended :unsure: ) Would there be any scenario, any at all, where you could possibly imagine yourself thinking, "Okay, that's it - this was unquestionably worse than anything any other politician in the US has ever done" ?

Like, say, Trump calls in on Fox News, then proceeds to kill some small, defenseless animal on live camera in a fit of rage (yes, I know I'm reaching here, but please bear with me). Would that make you reconsider? Or would your first instinct be to tell us how sad it is that so very few politicians of all stripes put any emphasis on animal welfare?

On a happier political/animal note, the White House has dogs in residence again:

Major is the first ever former shelter dog to move into the place. :cheers: And don't worry, in the spirit of unity, a cat will soon follow.

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1 hour ago, Caya said:

Would there be any scenario, any at all, where you could possibly imagine yourself thinking, "Okay, that's it - this was unquestionably worse than anything any other politician in the US has ever done" ?

I have a vivid imagination, so yes even though I've seen some pretty bad things already over my lifetime, I certainly can imagine some real toppers.  With Democrats coming into office now, most of my current nightmare scenarios involve financial disasters.  I prefer to think that they're unlikely to actually do such things, though.  I hope.

Or are you asking specifically if I can imagine Trump doing something I'd find unforgivable?  Well, of course -- he *could* do just about anything.  So could Biden.  They're politicians!  But in general, worst-case scenarios don't tend to happen, thank goodness, and life goes on.

 

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Not really my call, of course.

But looking over the pond I tend to think: he's gone, hope he doesn't come back and yes...let's get on with it.

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13 hours ago, Caya said:

Carol, may I ask you a question, and I promise I'm asking this out of honest curiosity? (you're of course free to ignore me if it comes across wrong, which I'm trying my hardest not to, but politics is a dicey topic - in fact, I'd rather you ignore this than become offended :unsure: ) Would there be any scenario, any at all, where you could possibly imagine yourself thinking, "Okay, that's it - this was unquestionably worse than anything any other politician in the US has ever done" ?

Like, say, Trump calls in on Fox News, then proceeds to kill some small, defenseless animal on live camera in a fit of rage (yes, I know I'm reaching here, but please bear with me). Would that make you reconsider? Or would your first instinct be to tell us how sad it is that so very few politicians of all stripes put any emphasis on animal welfare?

On a happier political/animal note, the White House has dogs in residence again:

Major is the first ever former shelter dog to move into the place. :cheers: And don't worry, in the spirit of unity, a cat will soon follow.

It might sounds silly, but I'm really happy dogs are back in the white house.

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Me too - they're such a cute, fluffy symbol of everything hopefully getting better again now. :smile:

20 hours ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

I have a vivid imagination, so yes even though I've seen some pretty bad things already over my lifetime, I certainly can imagine some real toppers.  With Democrats coming into office now, most of my current nightmare scenarios involve financial disasters.  I prefer to think that they're unlikely to actually do such things, though.  I hope.

Or are you asking specifically if I can imagine Trump doing something I'd find unforgivable?  Well, of course -- he *could* do just about anything.  So could Biden.  They're politicians!  But in general, worst-case scenarios don't tend to happen, thank goodness, and life goes on.

Doesn't have to be Trump specifically, he's just the first that comes to mind right now when I think of a walking disaster. But take someone else, sure - how about Ted Cruz, or Josh Hawley maybe, who seems like a waste of perfectly fine oxygen too. Though yeah, it should be a Republican, otherwise it's too easy. :lol: Say, whoever you pick runs against an incumbent Biden in 2024. What, if anything, would it take for you to declare, screw it, I cannot support something like *that*, I'm voting against him/her even though it means voting for a (horribile dictu) Democrat? :smile:  

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1 hour ago, Caya said:

But take someone else, sure - how about Ted Cruz, or Josh Hawley maybe, who seems like a waste of perfectly fine oxygen too. Though yeah, it should be a Republican, otherwise it's too easy.

Darn, and I was just about to mention Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton. Hillary Clinton, maybe Joe Biden?

1 hour ago, Caya said:

Say, whoever you pick runs against an incumbent Biden in 2024. What, if anything, would it take for you to declare, screw it, I cannot support something like *that*, I'm voting against him/her even though it means voting for a (horribile dictu) Democrat?

Hey, if I like the Democrat better, I'll vote for himmer, whether or not the Republican has done anything truly reprehensible.  And if I don't like either of 'em, I'll simply vote Libertarian (heaven knows I've done *that* more than a few times).

 

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On 26/01/2021 at 7:39 AM, Carol the Dabbler said:

I have a vivid imagination, so yes even though I've seen some pretty bad things already over my lifetime, I certainly can imagine some real toppers.  With Democrats coming into office now, most of my current nightmare scenarios involve financial disasters.  I prefer to think that they're unlikely to actually do such things, though.  I hope.

What kind of financial disasters are you apprehensive of? National dept? Higher / complicated / unfair taxes? Or do you consider the party fiscally incompetent in general and prone to mismanagement? 

Btw, I'm just curious, what did Biden say that you knew to be untrue? 

I always find it maddening when a politician or other public figure spews nonsense and I don't hear or read any news outlets pointing that out, instead just mindlessly repeating the claim. 

Example: one politician here in Germany recently made headlines demanding a law that would make it mandatory for all nurses to get vaccinated against Covid 19 "to protect the patients and nursing home residents". And not one, not ONE reporter (and believe me, I checked like eight different papers and radio stations because I am like that sometimes...) pointed out how at that time, there was ZERO evidence of any of the licensed vaccines doing more than preventing the vaccinated people themselves from becoming seriously ill. 

Thinking I was probably stupid and had missed new information, I then checked the info provided by the RKI and PEI (roughly comparable to the CDC in the US) and nope, no evidence, in fact there were explicit statements that even if you are fully vaccinated, you still need to wear a mask and practice social distancing etc because there is no guarantee that you can't still pass the virus on to other people! 

Now, don't get me wrong guys, I am 100% pro vaccination and impatiently waiting for the day I can get my own shot. I even agree that once there is strong evidence of vaccines preventing transmission, it's worth discussing to make them mandatory in certain areas, maybe. 

But unfounded premature claims and demands like that just make me wild. 

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25 minutes ago, T.o.b.y said:

What kind of financial disasters are you apprehensive of? National dept? Higher / complicated / unfair taxes? Or do you consider the party fiscally incompetent in general and prone to mismanagement?

Let's just say I think they have other priorities.

27 minutes ago, T.o.b.y said:

Btw, I'm just curious, what did Biden say that you knew to be untrue?

The claim that Trump called the KKK (or some similar category) "fine people," which I covered back in September, in this post:

On 9/20/2020 at 12:17 AM, Carol the Dabbler said:

I would be somewhat more likely to believe this story if there hadn't already been some blatant cases of misquoting him, such as the claim that he described the KKK as "fine people" -- whereas he actually said that there were ALSO some "fine people" opposed to removal of a Robert E. Lee statue, and he immediately followed that by denouncing the white nationalists. You can see it on video here.

I was a bit critical of removing that statue myself -- on the grounds that if you ignore history, you are doomed to repeat it -- till I found out that it wasn't a Confederate monument at all, but rather a relic of the subsequent "Jim Crow" era.  Even so, I can see how people of good will could disagree on this.

34 minutes ago, T.o.b.y said:

I always find it maddening when a politician or other public figure spews nonsense and I don't hear or read any news outlets pointing that out, instead just mindlessly repeating the claim. 

I guess that's just how humans behave, then.  As you've presumably noticed, we have the same situation over here, at least in cases where the nonsense is coming from Democrats.  The media seem to have absolutely no trouble criticizing Trump's statements -- sometimes even when he didn't actually say them (see above).

 

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This reminds me of something my father used to do with me when I was a teenager and still lived at home: during breakfast (if my mom wasn't up yet to complain about his laptop being on the dining table...), he'd read out the same news from different sources, ranging from far left to far right and, if possible, from different countries, including non western ones Like Russia, Saudi Arabia or China (admittedly limited to sites that would provide an English translation which is quite a few actually). 

Then we'd speculate on what really happened. :D

It was mostly for fun but it did teach me a lot about evaluating sources and processing information. 

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16 minutes ago, T.o.b.y said:

Then we'd speculate on what really happened. :D

It was mostly for fun but it did teach me a lot about evaluating sources and processing information. 

Critical thinking is a useful art to develop.  My compliments to your father for giving you that experience!

I think I've said this before, but when I was a kid, my parents subscribed to a morning paper that leaned one way and an evening paper that leaned the other way, ditto with the weekly local papers.  That gave me the information I needed for forming my own views.

 

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5 minutes ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

Critical thinking is a useful art to develop.  My compliments to your father for giving you that experience!

 

:lol: I'll pass them on.

He wasn't always the easiest person to live with but then, neither am I, and I couldn't have a better father in my opinion. (Or mother either for that matter). 

It's up for debate how successful his upbringing was in the area of critical thinking, I think I mostly float around in my own little bubble these days like most people do and certainly don't take the time on a regular basis to check ten different news sources from five different countries. But if I come across something that sounds odd to me, I usually will try to do a little research. And more often than not, you'll find me yelling at my favorite radio station in frustration... 😅 

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1 hour ago, T.o.b.y said:

I mostly float around in my own little bubble these days like most people do and certainly don't take the time on a regular basis to check ten different news sources from five different countries. But if I come across something that sounds odd to me, I usually will try to do a little research.

I think the most important thing is noticing that something sounds odd, rather than just accepting whatever you hear.

 

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My Problem with the "fine People" statement:
If I look at the photographs from Charlottesville I see VERY unpleasant parallels to German history. https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2017/10/07/white-nationalists-charlottesville-again/743624001/
You have KKK folks, some wannabe Hitler Jugend members with torches, many apparently belong to groups I cannot identify. Where are those normal, fine people? Maybe there are pictures of regular citizens protesting, if yes I'd like to see them. It also seem to be hard to get pics of the counter-protesters. Are there any sources?

But what's most important, at least to me:
Even if you want to protest against something you find wrong and do it in a civilized manner - why do you take part in a demonstration organized by a known Far-right white nationalist?
If you march with Nazis you are not a "fine person". You are a Nazi supporter.
This is why I have a problem with Trump's statement.

PS: Was the monument of gen. Lee on the University campus? Anyone knows?

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It must suck (pardon my language) to know that you're dependent on the approval of extremists. My impression is that Trump was trying to keep the neo-Nazis' and white supremacists' support without pissing off the more moderate majority, hence his rather ambiguous statements about the whole affair. (Yes, he did speak out against those groups formally but with the "fine people" part, any participant from the event was perfectly free to mentally place themselves in the "fine people" camp instead of the "horrible" camp.) 

Which in and of itself is worrying to me because how many of these people must America have that their votes are worth courting? 

Overall, it seemed to me throughout his presidency that Trump was trying to walk a fine line between making people with formerly inacceptible, because racist, violent, anti-democratic etc. positions feel legitimized enough to vote for him but maintain plausible deniability for the rest of the world. 

And I was left wondering, can I still call this run of the mill politics or is it the beginning of something more sinister? I think living in Germany makes you very wary, because we know how far things can go really fast and what atrocities humans can and will commit if they get the chance. 

I did notice a certain tendency, which annoyed me, on the part of liberal media to zoom in on any new opportunity for outrage that Trump provided and make the most of it. I kept wondering, is this really necessary? Can't they just report the facts and the quotes and let the man make a fool of himself on his own? And I would have liked more insight on why millions of people kept supporting him to the end. All I understood was that apparently, most of them were living in some kind of alternate reality. 

I don't know. I keep feeling torn between wanting to understand everyone and being afraid to miss the point where it's necessary to say stop, no, this is just plain wrong. I don't want to be a snotty "intellectual" in an ivory tower but I don't want another authoritarian regime (or worse) either. I mean that in general, not just in regards to Trump and his supporters. 

Must be the "P" and the "J" sides of my MBP type fighting each other. 

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