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Profile: will
User Name: will
Forum Rank: Advanced Member
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Joined: Monday, June 29, 2009
Last Visit: Friday, January 19, 2018 6:08:30 AM
Number of Posts: 1,073
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  Last 10 Posts
Topic: Could It Really Happen That Way?
Posted: Friday, January 19, 2018 6:06:59 AM
Fyfardens wrote:
Nearly 40% of Americans approve of Trump's presidency.
Nearly 40% of Americans believe that God created all life in the last ten thousand years.
It would not surprise me to learn that 40% of Americans believe that if Trump ordered a nuclear attack on North Korea (or Iran, or Hati or some other s***hole state) the world would be a better place - and no Americans would suffer.

Agreed. Applause

With the current political landscape, shaped as it is by conflicting strains of Abrahamic death cults, it’s sometimes hard to trust one’s faith in humanity.

Most recent Pew research (2013) found that roughly half of all Christians in the U.S believe the return of Christ, the central event in Christian eschatology, will occur within the next 40 years.

Senator Doug Broxson received rapturous applause (pun intended) when he announced, with giddy excitement, that Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital might bring forward a Biblical bloodbath... from which the chosen few are saved, of course. Pray

I suspect the applause, and the Pew poll, reflects a wider political and theological ignorance in the U.S, rather than a general culture of deranged Rapture-ready sociopaths, but it doesn’t paint a pleasant picture. It’s this kind of mentality in other Faiths that has Trump supporters foaming at the mouth.

The last forty years alone has witnessed countless apocalypse-hungry Christian leaders gleefully heralding the imminent mass extinction of all life on Earth. I have no doubt Mike Pence believes he will make the list come Judgement Day, and there is a very real scenario where he could actually bring such an apocalypse about.

Trump might just launch the nuclear arsenal if the button is ever designed with a certain gropeable quality. Eh?

Topic: Fear mongering
Posted: Wednesday, December 20, 2017 8:32:44 AM
progpen wrote:
Yes, that is what I'm doing but Listening doesn't seem to catch on to that sort of thing, so I then resort to being direct and he ignores me. Ah well, what can you do?

It's worth considering that Listening... might be ignoring you for an entirely different reason. I would hate to think FounDit believes I ignore his arguments because I'm unable to 'catch on'. Think

Topic: Fear mongering
Posted: Wednesday, December 20, 2017 8:28:06 AM
Listening... wrote:
I thank you for the gesture. I fear, however, you might be the one to wave the white flag at the end of it all. ; )

No white flag in sight, but I think I’ve said about all I need to and will probably only be repeating myself from here on.

Listening... wrote:
I suspect the western side would prefer to live in harmony...

True, and so would vast majority from the ‘other’ side – it is a myth that ‘they’ don’t.

And, fortunately, Trump and the USA do not represent the ‘western side’ by any stretch of the imagination – Trump as leader of the Free World is also just part of the ‘us’ and ‘them’ myth you’ve bought into. Trump is no more representative of western beliefs and culture than ISIS is representative of Islamic beliefs and culture.

Listening... wrote:
I don’t think Trump should Tweet. His ability to communicate lacks clarity and, sadly, refinement.

Such astonishingly poor judgement doesn’t bode well for more serious matters, does it? d'oh!

Listening... wrote:
I don’t think his tweets are helpful to the situation but I also don’t think they have substantial impact on the decisions of terrorists to continue to terrorize.

Had Trump not retweeted those videos, they would have circulated around a small group and likely made no substantial impact on their already bigoted prejudices. For the rational majority the global exposure was possibly a good opportunity to expose the lie for what it was. For the small group of Islamic extremists the hateful lie will have substantially reinforced their bigoted prejudice against their western enemies; that undoubtedly increases the risk to all of us.

Listening... wrote:
Obama was an outstanding orator and chose his words carefully - there was neither a decrease in terrorist attacks nor a diminished level of fear or anger.

I don’t know about a decrease during Obama’s tenure, but I think many people believe the situation is currently escalating, that was certainly the narrative from Trump during his run for office and since being elected, and the point of my original post.

Listening... wrote:
I wholeheartedly love this idea. Peace, compassion, unity, hope, rationality, and truth. If only the human condition didn’t screw these up so badly, compassion, hope, rationality, and truth would (in theory) bring peace and unity. When, in human history, has there been such a utopian existence? I suspect you will say there hasn’t but it’s the right direction to strive toward.

In general humankind – that’s ‘us’ and ‘them’ – currently lives in a era of unprecedented peace and harmony, due to a combination of a pragmatic understanding of the cost of conflict – particularly mutual annihilation – and the benefit of interdependent global systems.

In the year following 9/11, despite all the talk of war and terrorism, the average person was more likely to take their own life than be killed by a terrorist or soldier, or fall victim to any act of violence at the hand of another.

Peace is not just an ideal to strive for, it’s already the reality for the vast majority. You don’t have to buy into fear-mongering. If you have to be afraid I suggest you focus on the fact that you are considerably more at risk from an American on a gun rampage than a Muslim jihadist… or a thug from the Netherlands.

Religious extremists, popular nationalism and irrational divisive dogma make up a small dwindling minority. They have experienced a disproportionately visible resurgence in the last decade or two, due to the global reach of media and in particular the internet, but we don’t have to follow that agenda.

There is no long term future outside of cooperation within the global community. When Trump chooses to actively provoke North Korea despite repeated warnings from pretty much the entire international community, or when he decided, again against the grain of international diplomatic efforts, to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital (while simultaneously signing the waiver to keep the US embassy where it is, confirming the move is about as likely as the building of wall to keep those Mexican rapists out), or when he promotes lies that promote harmful stereotypes, he does so purely for short term (mainly personal) political gain.

Topic: Your Favorite Song
Posted: Tuesday, December 19, 2017 7:09:51 AM
almo 1Our musical tastes are strikingly similar... Applause

A different take on a Christmas classic: The Maccabees - Walking in the Air
Topic: Fear mongering
Posted: Tuesday, December 19, 2017 6:59:51 AM
March Hare wrote:

My new favourite phrase Applause

Topic: Fear mongering
Posted: Tuesday, December 19, 2017 6:57:46 AM
Listening... wrote:
I think we can all agree that Trump is not the most refined politician in the arena. However, I don’t believe Trump delivers any message that he believes is false. In other words, Trump believes what he is saying. Therefore, he is not telling a lie. I sincerely do not believe he is intent on misleading US citizens (or the world) into fearing a group of people. The group of people are speaking loudly enough for themselves about their intended direction. I suspect the victims and the families of the victims of terrorist attacks understand Trump’s movement toward mobilizing a defense.

Listening... I don’t want to drag this discussion on much further, I might not agree with you, but at least you are able to plainly state the ‘other’ side without feeling the need to resort to polemic and stereotyping; I genuinely appreciate that... and flogging it out until you finally see how wrong you are is not worth the animosity. Whistle I giveth with one hand...

I will say, however, that your argument works in exactly the same way as justification for the Taliban or ISIS; they don’t believe what they are saying is false, they genuinely (at least to the same political degree) believe the fear of ‘us’ is justified. Western military invasions, corporate occupation, physical and verbal abuse on the streets of one’s adopted country and lying tweets that attempt to portray Muslims – as a group – as savages, are all actions that ‘speak loudly enough for themselves’. The victims of decades of Western interference in the Middle East understand...etc.

Actually, that last point (and yours before) is ‘begging the question, a logical fallacy; there is no evidence to suggest that victims of terror are inclined to understand or support the actions of those that further perpetuate terror and, in this case, the ‘clash of civilisation’ myth. It’s this self-fulfilling cycle that extremists attempt to exploit. In fact the most common response to most attacks, in my experience, is one of peace, compassion, unity and hope.

Others have made this point already, but it’s worth repeating: peace, compassion, unity and hope are hard ideals to achieve. Whereas fear, hate and division are easy. This is why we have a situation where the overwhelming majority of humanity – including this old ‘lefty’ – want the former, but are drowned out by the tiny minority that promote the latter.

Listening... wrote:
If, as you state that this type response is all based in waking fear in the weak-minded, how do you explain what has happened to the families of the dead?

Sorry, I don’t understand the question. I think you've misunderstood what I said.

Listening... wrote:
Do you tell them that fearing (or being angry) toward the group that killed their loved one is not justified; that there is not a group to fear, in fact?

Which ‘group that killed their loved one’ are you referring to? Muslims in general? Muslims from a particular country? Migrants? Dutch nationals? Or males that beat up disabled people?
I suggest your use of the term ‘group’ is buying into the unqualified ‘us’ and ‘them’ fear-mongering that the likes of Trump are promoting.

Listening... wrote:
Their lost loved ones matter. It would be nice to slow the hate that moves such violence.

As I said before, the bottom line is this: do you think Trump’s anti-Muslim tweets are more likely or less likely to inflame the situation and lead to further hate and violence? Do you really believe that extremists are going to throw in the towel because the figurehead of Western imperialism portrays Muslims as savages, by tweeting a video of a Dutch national of undetermined religion beating up a disabled person? Eh?

I suspect the reason the White House, and Trump supporters, refuse to admit the obvious wrong in this particular incident is because it is in no way an isolated case.

Listening... wrote:
How do we do that?

We, the overwhelming majority of humanity, do that by promoting peace, compassion, unity, hope, rationality and truth, and by rejecting hate, fear and lies.

Topic: Fear mongering
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 8:00:28 AM
Listening... wrote:
However, I think a leader of a country has a duty to provide safety to the citizens of the country.

True. In the UK a particular group of our citizens are verbally and physically assaulted on a daily basis because of bigotry and stereotyping attached to lies designed to spread fear and hate.

The protection of UK citizens was the reason our Prime Minister was forced (not an action a professional world leader takes lightly) to publicly point out that the US President was “wrong” to retweet anti-Muslim videos promoting a far-right group that use “hateful narratives which peddle lies and stoke tensions.”

Validating groups like Britain First doesn’t only put innocent UK citizens of a particular colour and religion in danger by fuelling the fear and hatred against them, it puts us all in increased danger by fuelling the radicalisation of mentally vulnerable individuals from that community by perpetuating the clash of civilisations myth.

Trump’s response to our Prime Minister’s diplomatic attempts to calmly defuse the situation, with a rational stating of the facts, was to behave like an internet troll and fire off an angry admonishing tweet telling her how to do her job – the fact that the shaved orangutan that passes as your President couldn’t even manage to operate Twitter correctly suggests that he is supremely unqualified to advise on the complexities of world politics.

The later ‘considered’ White House response was to effectively say that the facts don’t matter.

Listening... wrote:
Sadly, providing such safety may be delivered by identifying the whole group’s philosophy in witnessing actions of the group’s smaller parts.

The important point here can be demonstrated by looking literally at the actual events as they occurred:

Are you saying it was right for a world leader (for the safety of his citizens) to identify the philosophy of the Dutch in general by witnessing the actions of one Dutch national of undetermined religion?

Or are you saying it was right for a world leader (for the safety of his citizens) to identify the (supposed) philosophy of Muslims in general by witnessing the actions of one Dutch national of undetermined religion?

Listening... wrote:
My question is this: When does the actions of the few become a true threat for the many?

It becomes true when it is true.
And if it were at all true that Muslims – as a collective group – are a threat, then it wouldn’t be necessary to spread demonstrable lies to make that point.

Listening... wrote:
In my mind, fear mongering is not what I see taking place. It is recognizing a threat and beginning to coordinate defenses. What has to happen/not happen to justify the mobility of defense?

What has to (and in fact does) happen is a rational assessment of genuine threats to mobilise a rational response. I suggest you have bought into the fear-mongering myth that the bogeyman is waiting to attack and no-one (other than Trump) is doing anything about it. This is also a cynically constructed lie, and exactly the point being made in this thread.

Our Government and our intelligence agencies, like all sovereign states, know perfectly well the actual threat from Islamic extremists, as well as the threat from far-right nationalists, and also the threat from unstable leaders of rogue states that stoop to the same level for personal political gains.

Listening... wrote:
Bottom line, a lie IS a lie. Until it’s not a lie.

This sounds very much like a description of self-fulfilling prophecy. It’s a lie that dogs are inherently dangerous, but provoking dogs until one attacks someone does not make the original lie any more true.

Topic: Journey of the Universe
Posted: Friday, December 15, 2017 9:21:27 AM
Romany wrote:
Will -

To be fair, I don't think you were talking to Thar - or the persona we know as "Thar" - as much as using his words to make a point?


Romany wrote:
We all get to pick up on personalities after a while on TFD and nothing I've ever seen written by Thar supports the idea of his being an apologist, or a "snowflake" (am I using that correctly?) or that he believes both arguments have merit.

I don’t know Thar well, but enough to suspect that a more accurate phrasing might have gone something like: ‘Come on, guys. You know you are not going to change each other's minds – one of you needs to retain his Faith regardless of facts and the other could never accept such a patently absurd position – so why go through the whole sniping palaver.

But that’s not what he said and it would have been wrong of me to reply by attributing words that weren’t there.

Romany wrote:
I read his comments as pertaining to HERE, on this forum, with this cast of characters. We all know how certain people react to certain subjects. We've submitted fact, proof of falsehood, truth, historical records, logic, critical thinking, and common sense to the same people over and over again - and they never even engage, let alone answer or respond to this info. It gets deadly dull and eye-wateringly boring: a repetitive conversation with each person speaking the same parts all over again. It's not just frustrating but it can raise one's hackles to be consistently ignored, not listened to, not having one's questions EVER responded to.....and THAT was what I think he was responding to. It escalates into inanity.

And too be honest, although I do think a defence of empiricism is important, part of me feels that, in the long run, it’s sometimes easier to get right to it and call bullshit before too much time is wasted on presenting ‘fact, proof of falsehood, truth, historical records, logic, critical thinking, and common sense’.

And sometimes it works; I imagine Dreamy might have second thoughts before trying the ‘thermodynamics refutes evolution’ mantra again here. He’s probably spouting it elsewhere… but that’s not our problem. Shhh

By the way, I'm not really like this in the ‘real’ world, because generally people are a lot less inclined to show their ignorance in ‘public’. I often wonder if, for some theists, exploring heresies online is a tentative attempt to address their cognitive dissonance. I do know several ex-theists who faced up to the most absurd inconsistencies in their beliefs first, before the whole thing came tumbling down. Who knows who might be reading these boards; the empowerment to break free of indoctrination is not an easy thing to find.


Topic: Journey of the Universe
Posted: Friday, December 15, 2017 7:09:42 AM
Absinthius wrote:
There you go! One of the most interesting topics to read up on, we know quite a lot about this nowadays.

But if cats evolved from lions, why are there still lions? Think


Topic: Fear mongering
Posted: Friday, December 15, 2017 7:04:50 AM
Where’s Listening… ? There must be at least one person on this forum, from the opposing viewpoint, with an ability to string together a coherent argument. Think
We still haven’t seen a sensible defence of why it is at all acceptable for the President of a leading world power to tweet a lie that legitimatises a group that physically and verbally abuse innocent individuals on the basis of their colour and culture.

Romany wrote:
When it was explained to him that a Christian bible was not an impediment because a candidate could swear on any book they held in esteem, this chap was dumbstruck.

Perhaps in principle, but in practice one doesn’t get very far in American politics without a Bible by your side ( even if only for political expediency). Even being a member of a particular brand of bizarre Christian cult, founded by some fantasist in the 1820’s, will do. ‘Other’ religious affiliations are completely unrepresented in the Senate, but do only make up 4.3% of the population (despite the fear-mongering tales of 'them' sweeping across the nation like a plague of locusts). The real political taboo is having no supernatural beliefs; those without religious affiliation are represented by 3% of the Senate for 22.8% of the population.

philips daughter wrote:
Not only does Trump create a void of information he fills it with propaganda and falsehoods. His tweets aren’t transparent. He uses them to “destabilize the existents of an objective reality where the truth matters.”

Exactly... although thankfully with limited success. Here in the UK, pretty much the only mention one hears about Trump is as the butt of jokes or ‘What has Trump said now!’ pieces.
He rarely makes serious news, unless our Government is required to address something directly – for example, to state plainly the facts about groups like Britain First, or re-state a commitment to a rational approach to world affairs. If American politics is discussed, it’s always one step removed from the White House; we tend to talk about the bigger picture. Trump and his cronies are reserved for ridicule… and lately I’ve noticed even comedians seem bored of his antics.


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