Mitt Romney

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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby agga » Tue Aug 14, 2012 2:39 am

WeiWenDi wrote:I remember reading the Norby Chronicles, I, Robot and the Foundation series way back when, and thinking that they were quite good. Unfortunately I haven't read much else by Mr Asimov...


*dr* asimov was a paternalist who took a very long view for humanity. i've always admired his outlook (he wrote more on science and history of science than he did science fiction, though he definitely had a consistent perspective in his fiction..), and he formed a big part of my worldview..

WeiWenDi wrote:But why defend the indefensible or the illogical?


i don't see it that way. i can understand defenses that i don't agree with, and i don't claim to have a completely logical worldview, so... if i see an outright contradiction, or an obvious flaw that leads to contradiction, i will happily point it out. in the case of paul ryan (i'm getting so confused.. rand paul.. ron paul.. paul ryan.. ayn rand.. every time i try to type one a different one comes out) being a hypocrite, i don't see the case at all, so i'm going down to a base semantic level and disagreeing there.

kind of funny timing, but here's someone writing better than me something i might have written:
http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2012/08/paul-ryans-randianism

WeiWenDi wrote:And what's this 'ubiquitous hate reflex'? I evinced that Paul Ryan's touted Catholicism does not mesh with his likewise touted Ayn Rand fandom


i think it looks like a blind attack, using sparse biographical details to defame someone using rather automatic political language. it's a cold, political, mechanical sort of hate. i don't think these sorts of attacks are well founded. has paul ryan actually condemned poor people as moochers (i think romney himself is guilty of a lot more of those sorts of statements)? just because he's claimed to like ayn rand books doesn't make him ayn rand herself, and shouldn't align him with all of her thinking on every issue.

also, being condemned by the catholic church tends to endear someone to me (other details being neutral), though i do have basic respect for the jesuits.

WeiWenDi wrote:Not every argument has two equally valid sides - something a lot of people tend to forget. And being fair doesn't always mean being 'nice' (and vice-versa).


agree. this reminds me of the palin/loughner affair last year, where i kept finding myself defending sarah palin on similar bases. and i don't mind saying that i hate sarah palin and i'm slightly terrified of her. people don't realize how specific i'm being sometimes. :?
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby WeiWenDi » Tue Aug 14, 2012 7:56 am

agga wrote:*dr* asimov was a paternalist who took a very long view for humanity. i've always admired his outlook (he wrote more on science and history of science than he did science fiction, though he definitely had a consistent perspective in his fiction..), and he formed a big part of my worldview..


Actually, I've taken quite a shine to the works of Lois McMaster Bujold. The striking thing about her work is that even in a universe where genetically-modified humans are commonplace, pregnancies are handled through uterine replicators, ships are capable of FTL travel via wormhole network and so forth, humans still behave like humans. Greed, jealousy, family squabbles, even heroism and love are still as potent and 'close' in her imagined universe as they are now. It's basically Firefly without the unfortunate political implications. But before Firefly.

agga wrote:i don't see it that way. i can understand defenses that i don't agree with, and i don't claim to have a completely logical worldview, so... if i see an outright contradiction, or an obvious flaw that leads to contradiction, i will happily point it out. in the case of paul ryan (i'm getting so confused.. rand paul.. ron paul.. paul ryan.. ayn rand.. every time i try to type one a different one comes out) being a hypocrite, i don't see the case at all, so i'm going down to a base semantic level and disagreeing there.

kind of funny timing, but here's someone writing better than me something i might have written:
http://www.economist.com/blogs/democrac ... randianism


For one thing, the Economist generally sucks. Most of their op-eds are published anonymously, under pseudonyms or (in this case) under initials, and it functions essentially as the mouthpiece for the neoliberal establishment, so I don't really buy their bogus line about 'we defended the Occupiers from the same charges too'. Their smarmy condescension toward the OWS types comes off loud and clear in pieces like this one ('blame YOUR MOM, not Wall Street!') or this one ('these are the statistics, but we can read them better than those plebes can') or this one ('damn dirty hippies should organise themselves like the Tea Party, who haven't used violence against people they disagree with at all!'). Or, as the late physicist Robert Feinman (not to be confused with Richard) put it:

Robert Feinman wrote:They want to have their prejudices confirmed, and their owners (part of the ruling class) want to see their privilege maintained. If this means misreading economic theory, history or current events in the pursuit of their cause - so be it.


Not only that, but the Economist article in question is basically one extended exercise in missing the point. The question is not one of the degree to which Paul Ryan is a fan of Alisa Rosenbaum - but the facts remain that he is on record as being one; talk is cheap, especially on ye olde campaign trail, but when he was in office he distributed her novels to his staff as required reading. Nor is the question the degree to which Paul Ryan behaves in accordance with Randian principles. From a purely semantic perspective, the hypocrisy consists in the degree to which your stated principles do not align with your public actions. Rosenbaum's view is simply pathetic in its unfairness and illogicality - she would basically want all welfare recipients to be subject to her ideological litmus test rather than means testing. No one but the most slavish bigot would ascribe to such a view; it also indicates a higher-level hypocrisy that her self-proclaimed 'individualism' serves only to bolster another sort of tribal collectivism: us (the righteous, deserving, aggrieved 'individualistic' anti-welfare welfare recipients) versus them (the pathetic, greedy, useless wastes of air and food, i.e. everybody else receiving welfare). If Ryan proclaimed such a view, he also would be a hypocrite and a bigot. The article correctly states that he has not proclaimed such explicitly.

But the Economist article is being obtuse in another way - Ryan's plans for social security do involve it being completely dismantled, not reformed so it can live another day. He wants to socialise all the costs and privatise all the benefits for those wealthy enough and knowledgeable enough to game the system. That is using a system designed for public benefit to serve as an instrument of class politics.

agga wrote:also, being condemned by the catholic church tends to endear someone to me


I would hardly call a couple of strongly worded letters a 'condemnation'. Again, they were only making clear what the Catholic position was, and making sure that Ryan didn't try to falsely claim Catholic doctrine supports his preferred policy plans when it does not. You seem to have a rather consistent problem with falsely attributing vicious intent to actions and statements rather plainly not meant so.
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby Shen Ai » Tue Aug 14, 2012 8:28 am

James wrote:Paul Ryan will be Mitt Romney's running mate.



I read that something close to forty percent disapproval rating or something of sort came in response to this pick.

Ryan is popular with the Tea Party though. And he doesn't seem like the type who could cost Romney the centre like Palin did for McCain. And credit to Romney, he chose a guy who's well versed in state budgets.

He should have gone with Pawlenty, but it's a better choice than Gingrich and Bachmann.
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby agga » Tue Aug 14, 2012 10:02 pm

WeiWenDi wrote:For one thing, the Economist generally sucks.


eh.. i wouldn't go that far.. i mainly go there to participate in pushback against their china articles, or to fight with the anti-china people (or to get in between them and the wumaos) in the comments section. also, i like their charts sometimes. i don't really read a lot of the articles, i just saw that title and had to have a look.

WeiWenDi wrote:If Ryan proclaimed such a view, he also would be a hypocrite and a bigot. The article correctly states that he has not proclaimed such explicitly.


okay, so, there you go.

WeiWenDi wrote:But the Economist article is being obtuse in another way - Ryan's plans for social security do involve it being completely dismantled, not reformed so it can live another day.


it sounds more like "mostly dismantled" to me.

WeiWenDi wrote:... using a system designed for public benefit to serve as an instrument of class politics.


but the democratic party does this constantly. constantly! how is the basic premise of democratic (party) politics outside this criticism?

WeiWenDi wrote:You seem to have a rather consistent problem with falsely attributing vicious intent to actions and statements rather plainly not meant so.


this is true, i have trouble perceiving emotional tone in writing. also in speech. it's a problem! i also get accused of being too sharp sometimes. ah, tone...

but still, when some organization comes out and publicly scolds someone for some reason, it's fair to call that "condemning".

anyways, i think that romney is going to lose, because the public's perception of him and ryan is generally going to be on your side: they're waging a war against the poor on behalf of the rich. romney chose ryan because they seem to be in general agreement on the politics that evoke this perception, but also because ryan is much more charismatic and sympathetic (especially in not being a near-billionaire quasi-capitalist) than romney. if romney wins it will be because ryan helped him with his rhetoric, but i think he'll lose because of the hardening of that public perception..
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby James » Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:38 pm

Supports continued subsidies for the oil industry; opposes continuation of subsidies to wind power. :|
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby Jordan » Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:15 am

James wrote:Supports continued subsidies for the oil industry; opposes continuation of subsidies to wind power. :|


Not backwards enough. We should be subsidizing horse and buggies. Where have our traditional values and businesses gone?
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby laojim » Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:32 pm

Jordan wrote:
James wrote:Supports continued subsidies for the oil industry; opposes continuation of subsidies to wind power. :|


Not backwards enough. We should be subsidizing horse and buggies. Where have our traditional values and businesses gone?


That's all red herring.

The complaint is simply that the rich pay less and demand ever more exemption from their requirements as citizens while everyone else keeps asking, "Why do you pay so little and demand that we pay ever more?" We also would like an accounting of the money he has hidden away in foreign bands like drug dealers, criminals, and petty tyrants do? We are not saying that he has done anything illegal, we just want an accounting of all this to ensure that he is not, in fact, doing anything naughty. If Romney is a crook we need to know that now, not later as was the case with Nixon, a Republican president of the past who so famously declared, "I am not a crook."

One of the facts of life is that the laws are often written for the benefit of the wealthy by wealthy lawyers in congress. If the rich congressmen write laws to benefit their rich friends they there is no illegality in the rich dodging their social responsibility. Therefore, we need a rather more thorough accounting of the status of some of these people.

As for the tax rate, it was George Bush who demanded the tax cut for the wealthy on the understanding that the tax cut would end later. The conservative thing to do would be to allow the Bush temporary tax cut to laps as he seems to have intended. Why then the cry from so called conservatives that the taxes on the wealthy, who became wealthy while the tax rates were much higher, cannot possibly pay more now. Obviously, they could and should pay more now, just as they paid more when they became wealthy.

As Will Rogers said in answer to the question of where the money was going to come from, "It's going to come from those that have got it." We might add that we want to know how much they have and where it is, so we can properly expect them to pay and to make sure they are not holding back. If Obama has overseas tax shelters lets find them too.
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby Shen Ai » Wed Nov 07, 2012 5:56 am

I haven't followed Romney as close as I would have liked, but living in Calgary, Alberta, where oil is the stock trade of the province, was there any truths to Romney's promises for independent energy in North America?
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Re: Mitt Romney

Unread postby James » Wed Nov 07, 2012 1:50 pm

Shen Ai wrote:I haven't followed Romney as close as I would have liked, but living in Calgary, Alberta, where oil is the stock trade of the province, was there any truths to Romney's promises for independent energy in North America?

That was all tied in to fossil fuels vs. alternative energy. Whether due to climate change denial or lobbying from the oil industry, it has become pretty standard for the Republican Party to oppose, on at least some level, progress in alternative energy, but to a greater extent than that, the interest has become in ramping up off-shore drilling and more extensive drilling within the United States. While it is technically true that this could result in a greater degree of energy independence, it is extremely short-sighted as an acceleration in drilling will only accelerate the depletion of a finite natural resource. Combine that with opposition to alternative energy and we're setting ourselves up for much bigger future problems.

Coal also played a big role in the presidential election, with the Republican Party talking up support for coal mining and coal as an energy source. This is because coal is a big industry in a range of swing states (including playing a major role in Ohio and Virginia) and supporting coal mining wins votes among the districts which depend on it for large chunks of employment.
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