Discussion of movies and ReelThoughts topics

It is currently Fri Oct 31, 2014 9:41 am




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 43 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next
The People's Interests 
Author Message
Post The People's Interests
So, in the United States, we have 2 dominant parties mired in special interests. The Republican party is completely dominated by moneyed interests, and the democratic party is almost completely dominated by moneyed interests. Sure, the democrats occasionally support the working class, but the fact of the matter is that special interests still control much of their policy. Either way you look at it, the middle class is slowly being cut out by corporate interests.

BUT! There's hope. Out in Wisconsin, the workers stood up and said enough is enough. The question is; will the rest of the country follow suit? How long will it take before the working class bands together to stop all this madness? Will it happen? If it doesn't, I'd say this country is almost assuredly fucked (an opinion of mine that I've made quite clear over the span of my time on this forum).

Then, of course, there's the shadow government (aka the media) that has a penchant for brainwashing. But will the younger generations push out the abject, babbling retards who buy into the propagandist agendas of corporate media outlets? Only time will tell.

Comments?


Sun May 08, 2011 1:54 am
Post Re: The People's Interests
It's funny - coming back to the UK this week

They have been having an election and I'd forgotten just how excellent the media is over here vs the US
Most Uk people think their media is poor, but have not spent extended times in the US
If they did, they'd change their views for sure

Yup, as an observer, US government on all sides is hopelessly corrupt
and worse still they have a system designed to maintain a 2 party setup - or the status quo

One of the real issues in US society is the rapid movement of wealth to the top x%
It has accelerated too fast over the past 20 years
that sets up societal imbalance and that ultimately leads to unrest

We will see
Rob


Sun May 08, 2011 3:43 am
Post Re: The People's Interests
Ohhhh, so THAT'S why you guys are so much smarter than us...here I thought it was because we take all of our money out of education!!!

If only we could convince all those inbred ignoramuses to watch/read/listen to the BBC instead of Fox News...

Keeping the people stupid is part of their plan to keep the status quo. I fear working class Americans are too helplessly incapable of critical thinking to ever realize it. I can only hope that one day the dog will wake up bite the hand that's spoon-feeding it lies.


Sun May 08, 2011 5:33 am
Assistant Second Unit Director

Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2011 5:52 am
Posts: 59
Location: England.
Post Re: The People's Interests
rob, i don't even think our media is THAT bad - excusing the majority of the papers; daily mail especially - and I am well aware of just how sensationalist american media can be, if only due to spending whole days lounging in american hotel rooms hungover.

my main issue with the uk (and in some ways, it's media) is that our politicians cannot give facts, it's just a slanging match. i wasn't 100% in favour of AV, but I voted yes as I see it as an oppurtunity to alert politics in general that people DO want change and by voting yes we open ourselves up to more oppurtunities in the future to be offered a say in changing the country. By voting 'no', we've set ourselves back and handed politicians a clear message that we are happy and to continue with their squabbling. I digress.

I'm just saying here that between the squabbles and backstabbing the actual FACTS have not been told from ANYONE about AV and FPTP and as such everyone I know who voted 'no' has absolutely NO idea what AV actually was, just an intolerance to nick clegg.

the media did little to give unbiased facts, and broadcasted the latest exchanging of words between the coalition leaders, but through my long-winded digression I do agree with you on the difference between UK and US media.


Sun May 08, 2011 7:47 am
Profile WWW
Post Re: The People's Interests
OtherBen wrote:
rob, i don't even think our media is THAT bad - excusing the majority of the papers; daily mail especially - and I am well aware of just how sensationalist american media can be, if only due to spending whole days lounging in american hotel rooms hungover.

my main issue with the uk (and in some ways, it's media) is that our politicians cannot give facts, it's just a slanging match. i wasn't 100% in favour of AV, but I voted yes as I see it as an oppurtunity to alert politics in general that people DO want change and by voting yes we open ourselves up to more oppurtunities in the future to be offered a say in changing the country. By voting 'no', we've set ourselves back and handed politicians a clear message that we are happy and to continue with their squabbling. I digress.

I'm just saying here that between the squabbles and backstabbing the actual FACTS have not been told from ANYONE about AV and FPTP and as such everyone I know who voted 'no' has absolutely NO idea what AV actually was, just an intolerance to nick clegg.

the media did little to give unbiased facts, and broadcasted the latest exchanging of words between the coalition leaders, but through my long-winded digression I do agree with you on the difference between UK and US media.



Hey there Otherben

The Uk is not perfect, but the BBC is jewel and I realize it every time I have 2 weeks away from network TV and Fox.

The problem with the US TV stations is that they treat American's as though they are stupid, incapable of paying attention for more than one minute, grasping a sentence of more than 7 words or a concept that is not simply a headline.

Rob


Sun May 08, 2011 7:57 am
Post Re: The People's Interests
For the most part, I simply choose to completely ignore politics altogether as there's just not a whole lot of stuff that i'm all that passionate about right now, i'd much rather focus on my personal life then worry about how overblown our media is, it's just not worth getting worked up about IMO


Sun May 08, 2011 11:39 am
Post Re: The People's Interests
Vexer wrote:
For the most part, I simply choose to completely ignore politics altogether as there's just not a whole lot of stuff that i'm all that passionate about right now, i'd much rather focus on my personal life then worry about how overblown our media is, it's just not worth getting worked up about IMO



Completely agree, it's just that you really see a difference when you travel
Rob


Sun May 08, 2011 12:13 pm
Post Re: The People's Interests
The People's Interests, or Another Self-Promotion "Got The Fix-It" Thread

Quote:
But will the younger generations push out the abject, babbling retards who buy into the propagandist agendas of corporate media outlets? Only time will tell.


Something came along and opened your eyes, right? Was it foul cynicism or willingness?

Quote:
Keeping the people stupid is part of their plan to keep the status quo.


Define "stupid".

Quote:
I fear working class Americans are too helplessly incapable of critical thinking to ever realize it.


That's close to how I'd define "stupid" today. Incapable? Helpless? I could casually apply contemptuous labels like "arrogant" and "conspiracy-stricken".

But this is the way it goes with America's Righteously-Opinionated Youth Brigade. To have all the answers at 22 or 23, to have contempt for those who haven't been given the opportunity to hear the so-called "correct thinking", to expect monumental growth/epiphanies from those that were, only seconds before, labeled "stupid".

When you take your message out there, when you try to convince the unwashed masses, make sure you don't open up with "Listen up you uneducated retards," because you'll find that people dislike that. That's a free tip from me to you.

"If only everyone had the critical thinking skills I had...".

Famous last words. I'd wager that it's the death of empathy that creates a vast amount of problems and not a lack of "critical thinking skills" that make things so rough. Because, and this is a guess, I'm assuming that if "critical thinking skills" were at the source of this thread there wouldn't be frustration, unfair expectations and self-righteousness enough for a country.

I was that cocky 22-23-year-old. I'm still that guy once in a while. I may have been that guy in this post. But I gave it up as a full-time position when I found that the only people that would listen to me were other angry, inexperienced jerks that had yet to actually go out and do something with themselves. Rage at the system just lead me to do... nothing.


Sun May 08, 2011 12:58 pm
Post Re: The People's Interests
Ok, so I may have read Watchmen one too many times. But it wouldn't matter what tone I addressed my qualms in, few listen anyways. For all the fire and rage and thunder, I have no misconceptions about creating this thread. I didn't expect to uneducated anybody; it was merely a way of venting. In the wrong venue? Perhaps. But if I was really that much of a shameless self-promoter, I'd be making youtube videos or posting this on craigslist or something, not on a relatively low traffic forum (comparatively speaking to more popular outlets) whose main focus is on cinema. I mean, I value this forum and I appreciate the responses I get... All of them. This is a cool message board with a lot of smart heads. Regardless, I'm going to end up pissing somebody off no matter what. I'm willing to live with that.

That being said, I'd like to hear a rebuttal that didn't involve only criticizing my callous bumptiousness; perhaps one that pointed out the fallacies of the "conspiracy theories" I seem to have made in the original post? I mean, I definitely made crass broad generalizations about a lot of people, but when it comes to brass tax, many of the things I said are a lot closer to the truth than you may think.

I'd also like to acknowledge the fact that I am crudely cynical. That probably makes me an asshole. Oh well...

How would I define stupid? Well, let me put it to you this way. I forgot who said this, so I'm going to paraphrase.

Smart people only believe half of what they hear. Brilliant people know which half to believe.


Sun May 08, 2011 4:57 pm
Post Re: The People's Interests
majoraphasia wrote:
The People's Interests, or Another Self-Promotion "Got The Fix-It" Thread

Quote:
But will the younger generations push out the abject, babbling retards who buy into the propagandist agendas of corporate media outlets? Only time will tell.


Something came along and opened your eyes, right? Was it foul cynicism or willingness?

Quote:
Keeping the people stupid is part of their plan to keep the status quo.


Define "stupid".

Quote:
I fear working class Americans are too helplessly incapable of critical thinking to ever realize it.


That's close to how I'd define "stupid" today. Incapable? Helpless? I could casually apply contemptuous labels like "arrogant" and "conspiracy-stricken".

But this is the way it goes with America's Righteously-Opinionated Youth Brigade. To have all the answers at 22 or 23, to have contempt for those who haven't been given the opportunity to hear the so-called "correct thinking", to expect monumental growth/epiphanies from those that were, only seconds before, labeled "stupid".

When you take your message out there, when you try to convince the unwashed masses, make sure you don't open up with "Listen up you uneducated retards," because you'll find that people dislike that. That's a free tip from me to you.

"If only everyone had the critical thinking skills I had...".

Famous last words. I'd wager that it's the death of empathy that creates a vast amount of problems and not a lack of "critical thinking skills" that make things so rough. Because, and this is a guess, I'm assuming that if "critical thinking skills" were at the source of this thread there wouldn't be frustration, unfair expectations and self-righteousness enough for a country.

I was that cocky 22-23-year-old. I'm still that guy once in a while. I may have been that guy in this post. But I gave it up as a full-time position when I found that the only people that would listen to me were other angry, inexperienced jerks that had yet to actually go out and do something with themselves. Rage at the system just lead me to do... nothing.


I love you. So, so much.

To keep the Major train rolling, Timmy, you're not necessarily wrong at all, except that you seem to think that A) this is a problem caused by individuals (or, in your words, individual stupidity), B) that this is a new thing exclusive to our generation and that C) you're dangerously prone to hyperbole. It's that last one I really take problem with; if this country really is "fucked," it's not going to collapse all of a sudden from the weight of its corruption, it'll slowly slide down the slope of irrelevancy until plop! The U.S. isn't that big a deal anymore. What we have here isn't the stage for some Marxist revolution, what we have is a bunch of people talking past each other and a small handful in the middle trying to make sense of it all.

I can't engage in some deep political debate with you because I'm just not that knowledgeable in that area, but I'm with Major that most of the world's problems, your issues included, come from a lack of understanding/empathy, not a lack of intelligence. You calling every American you disagree with an ignoramus, as if that word were big enough to justify your irrational hatred, is only adding to the problem. As long as elitism of both the poor conservative, the rich conservative, the upper-middle class liberal, and the angry 22 year old ranting on the internet continues, every side will continue to lose.

Let me end by editing that last quote of yours a little:

Smart people only believe half of what they hear. Brilliant people know which half to believe. But it's the real geniuses that both know which half to believe and can still respect the other half.


Sun May 08, 2011 5:22 pm
Director
User avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:54 pm
Posts: 1484
Post Re: The People's Interests
Timmy Shoes wrote:
So, in the United States, we have 2 dominant parties mired in special interests. The Republican party is completely dominated by moneyed interests, and the democratic party is almost completely dominated by moneyed interests. Sure, the democrats occasionally support the working class, but the fact of the matter is that special interests still control much of their policy. Either way you look at it, the middle class is slowly being cut out by corporate interests.

BUT! There's hope. Out in Wisconsin, the workers stood up and said enough is enough. The question is; will the rest of the country follow suit? How long will it take before the working class bands together to stop all this madness? Will it happen? If it doesn't, I'd say this country is almost assuredly fucked (an opinion of mine that I've made quite clear over the span of my time on this forum).

Then, of course, there's the shadow government (aka the media) that has a penchant for brainwashing. But will the younger generations push out the abject, babbling retards who buy into the propagandist agendas of corporate media outlets? Only time will tell.

Comments?


Wisconsin was a bunch of well-off teachers supporting an incestuous government-union complex.

Here's what they wanted:
The government to continue to collect union dues for the unions
The unions to not have to get at least 50% of workers to vote for certification to get certification

We have an education crisis in America, and the teachers unions are the number one enemy of reform. Instead of uplifting them, you should look at them for what they are: a destructive force on the education of children. We need massive, fundamental educational reform. Longer school days, longer school years. Probably a completely different model, as Sal Khan has proposed. We need more competition. The teachers unions oppose this. They oppose merit pay. They oppose everything that would result in positive reform.

As for the rest of your post, you're artificially dividing the country into classes and then saying that the government should work for one 'class' against the other ones. I think the government shouldn't be class-based.

_________________
I am a Leaf on the Wind. Watch Me Soar
---
http://www.leafontheweb.com


Sun May 08, 2011 9:18 pm
Profile
Director
User avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:54 pm
Posts: 1484
Post Re: The People's Interests
Robert Holloway wrote:
It's funny - coming back to the UK this week

They have been having an election and I'd forgotten just how excellent the media is over here vs the US
Most Uk people think their media is poor, but have not spent extended times in the US
If they did, they'd change their views for sure

Yup, as an observer, US government on all sides is hopelessly corrupt
and worse still they have a system designed to maintain a 2 party setup - or the status quo

One of the real issues in US society is the rapid movement of wealth to the top x%
It has accelerated too fast over the past 20 years
that sets up societal imbalance and that ultimately leads to unrest

We will see
Rob


I don't see any problem at all with income inequality, so long as there is nothing unethical or illegal in the process of attaining it. People have different skill levels and it makes sense that some people will make more money than others. We have more than ever in this country a meritocracy in which those who are the brightest will get ahead. That internet is the great equalizer of society. It means that if you have the mind, you will likely succeed.

_________________
I am a Leaf on the Wind. Watch Me Soar
---
http://www.leafontheweb.com


Sun May 08, 2011 9:20 pm
Profile
Director
User avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:54 pm
Posts: 1484
Post Re: The People's Interests
Robert Holloway wrote:
OtherBen wrote:
rob, i don't even think our media is THAT bad - excusing the majority of the papers; daily mail especially - and I am well aware of just how sensationalist american media can be, if only due to spending whole days lounging in american hotel rooms hungover.

my main issue with the uk (and in some ways, it's media) is that our politicians cannot give facts, it's just a slanging match. i wasn't 100% in favour of AV, but I voted yes as I see it as an oppurtunity to alert politics in general that people DO want change and by voting yes we open ourselves up to more oppurtunities in the future to be offered a say in changing the country. By voting 'no', we've set ourselves back and handed politicians a clear message that we are happy and to continue with their squabbling. I digress.

I'm just saying here that between the squabbles and backstabbing the actual FACTS have not been told from ANYONE about AV and FPTP and as such everyone I know who voted 'no' has absolutely NO idea what AV actually was, just an intolerance to nick clegg.

the media did little to give unbiased facts, and broadcasted the latest exchanging of words between the coalition leaders, but through my long-winded digression I do agree with you on the difference between UK and US media.



Hey there Otherben

The Uk is not perfect, but the BBC is jewel and I realize it every time I have 2 weeks away from network TV and Fox.

The problem with the US TV stations is that they treat American's as though they are stupid, incapable of paying attention for more than one minute, grasping a sentence of more than 7 words or a concept that is not simply a headline.

Rob


Most Americans are stupid, incapable of paying attention for more than one minute, and can not grasp a complex sentence. Stupidity is somewhat evenly distributed on the 'left', the 'right', and those that claim to not belong to either side.

A prime example of that is Gary Johnson (and Ron Paul)'s push to actually have a conversation about our drug policy. Instead of taking it seriously, most people simply make pot jokes and dismiss Johnson. Johnson was a two term governor of New Mexico and is a self-made millionaire. He's probably the smartest person in the field of candidates and is smarter than Barack Obama, too. But people are too dependent upon the state to take him seriously.

_________________
I am a Leaf on the Wind. Watch Me Soar
---
http://www.leafontheweb.com


Sun May 08, 2011 9:25 pm
Profile
Post Re: The People's Interests
firefly wrote:
Wisconsin was a bunch of well-off teachers supporting an incestuous government-union complex.

Here's what they wanted:
The government to continue to collect union dues for the unions
The unions to not have to get at least 50% of workers to vote for certification to get certification

We have an education crisis in America, and the teachers unions are the number one enemy of reform. Instead of uplifting them, you should look at them for what they are: a destructive force on the education of children. We need massive, fundamental educational reform. Longer school days, longer school years. Probably a completely different model, as Sal Khan has proposed. We need more competition. The teachers unions oppose this. They oppose merit pay. They oppose everything that would result in positive reform.

As for the rest of your post, you're artificially dividing the country into classes and then saying that the government should work for one 'class' against the other ones. I think the government shouldn't be class-based.


What about the fact that they fought to defend their right to collective bargaining? While I agree about a desperate need for education reform, why are the teachers unions more at fault when our government continually push policies that take funds away from education (and social benefits, for that matter). We pour billions into defense and the war machine but can't even end Bush-era tax cuts. And the teachers unions are at fault? I realize throwing money at a problem isn't going to fix things, and unions may not be perfect, but if you think the quality of working conditions would be better without them, you're crazy.

firefly wrote:
I don't see any problem at all with income inequality, so long as there is nothing unethical or illegal in the process of attaining it. People have different skill levels and it makes sense that some people will make more money than others. We have more than ever in this country a meritocracy in which those who are the brightest will get ahead. That internet is the great equalizer of society. It means that if you have the mind, you will likely succeed.


You think that top 1% who owns a greater majority of the wealth than the bottom x% (unsure of the exact stats) got there by being ethical? Problem is, it was probably legal, but that's only because lobbyists and special interest push policies that allow them to get away with murder. Moreover, if you think skill levels are all you need to succeed in this country, you're sorely mistaken. Being the brightest doesn't get you there if the opportunities aren't available. And for many unfair reasons for a great many thousands of people, those opportunities aren't around. Last time I checked, Paris Hilton is the most talentless person on this planet (she even sucks at giving blowjobs, something you'd think she'd be good at) and she's loaded. You think Donald Trump would be anywhere if his dad didn't give him a couple million dollars to do what with he pleased? Glenn Beck might be a talented propagandist, but was it really his wits that got him fame and fortune? (Who knows, maybe it was. Maybe he doesn't actually believe all that crazy shit he says, he was just cashing in on all the dummies who were so quick to believe him). Meritocracy? More like hierarchy. It depends less on your ability and more on the family you were born into. So I'm sure it's just coincidence that high income neighborhoods have better school ratings than poor urban ones and there isn't a correlation whatsoever. I'm sure that all those dirty poor kids are just too stupid to succeed, right? -_-

Also, I'm not the one who drew the artificial class lines. They've been around a long time before me.


Sun May 08, 2011 10:19 pm
Post Re: The People's Interests
How can you claim intelligence can take you where want to go in this country when the great minds you cite (Gary Johnson, Ron Paul) are often shunned, ignored, or somehow unjustly demonized?


Sun May 08, 2011 10:33 pm
Director
User avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:54 pm
Posts: 1484
Post Re: The People's Interests
Timmy Shoes wrote:
What about the fact that they fought to defend their right to collective bargaining? While I agree about a desperate need for education reform, why are the teachers unions more at fault when our government continually push policies that take funds away from education (and social benefits, for that matter). We pour billions into defense and the war machine but can't even end Bush-era tax cuts. And the teachers unions are at fault? I realize throwing money at a problem isn't going to fix things, and unions may not be perfect, but if you think the quality of working conditions would be better without them, you're crazy.


Collective bargaining is part of the problem. Collective bargaining makes it difficult and sometimes near impossible to fire bad teachers. It prevents merit pay. It prevents longer school days and longer school years. It is a system rigged to favor mediocre and poor teachers, at the expense of good teachers. In short, you can not have education reform without destroying the power of the teachers unions.

Also, there's no relationship between the amount of money an individual state spends and its education performance. Money is tremendously overrated. And, charter schools do better often with less money. You don't need tons of money to be successful. You don't need flashy toys etc. A lot of schools spent a lot of money early getting online without any clue how to actually use the internet to help education. Now Sal Khan has showed how to do it. He provides it for free, and he does so in a definitively low-fi way.



Quote:
You think that top 1% who owns a greater majority of the wealth than the bottom x% (unsure of the exact stats) got there by being ethical? Problem is, it was probably legal, but that's only because lobbyists and special interest push policies that allow them to get away with murder.


So then we ought to remove the policies that favor certain corporations and certain industries. Make no mistake about it: neither I nor any other classical liberal supports the type of corporatist scheming that pervades American politics. We should eliminate all trade barriers, farm subsidies, etc.

Quote:
Moreover, if you think skill levels are all you need to succeed in this country, you're sorely mistaken. Being the brightest doesn't get you there if the opportunities aren't available. And for many unfair reasons for a great many thousands of people, those opportunities aren't around. Last time I checked, Paris Hilton is the most talentless person on this planet (she even sucks at giving blowjobs, something you'd think she'd be good at) and she's loaded.


Most wealth in America is created, not inherited. Look at the major internet entrepreneurs. The Google founders are a pair of academics who didn't come from old money. Mark Zuckerberg certainly wasn't poor but was by no means fabulously wealthy before he founded facebook. Keep going through the list. You'll find that these are self-made millionaires and billionaires.

Quote:
You think Donald Trump would be anywhere if his dad didn't give him a couple million dollars to do what with he pleased?


He wouldn't be anywhere if he didn't have business sense. He would've squandered the money away. Or more likely, just done nothing and lived off his money, like certain members of the Kennedy clan.


Quote:
Glenn Beck might be a talented propagandist, but was it really his wits that got him fame and fortune?


Yes. Glenn Beck is very good at what he does. You may not like what he says (I don't agree with some of what he says), but that does not take away his talent.

The industries that you're listing represent a microscopic look at the overall American economy.

Quote:
So I'm sure it's just coincidence that high income neighborhoods have better school ratings than poor urban ones and there isn't a correlation whatsoever. I'm sure that all those dirty poor kids are just too stupid to succeed, right? -_-


A big part of school failure is the teachers unions. See Terry Moe's Collective bargaining and the performance of the public schools (available for free-search through Google Scholar), which shows how collective bargaining hurts school performance, particularly in inner city schools. It takes more effort for someone in an inner city to succeed but it is by no means whatsoever impossible. The problem is that certain subcultures in America place exceedingly little value in education. American Liberals aid the perpetuation of this through failed social programs and affirmative action programs that only discriminate against better performing minorities.

Quote:
How can you claim intelligence can take you where want to go in this country when the great minds you cite (Gary Johnson, Ron Paul) are often shunned, ignored, or somehow unjustly demonized?


I'm not saying it'll make you president ;) Johnson is a self-made millionaire, and Paul was a successful doctor.

_________________
I am a Leaf on the Wind. Watch Me Soar
---
http://www.leafontheweb.com


Sun May 08, 2011 10:40 pm
Profile
Post Re: The People's Interests
Reform the unions, reform education. There's a lot that needs fixin'. The question is, will it ever get the mending it so desperately needs? Or will the trends of anti-intellectualism and corporate influence continue to decay our society?

Zuckerberg can from a well off upper middle class family. Larry Page was the son of wealthy computer scientists and innovators. Sergey Brinn was the son of well to do, highly educated professors.

Name me an entrepreneur from the ghetto who isn't a rap star whose wealth even closely resembles that of these men.

What's the likelihood of remaining in the social class you're born into in this country? I'd bet my bottom dollar it's upwards of 89%. Meritocracy wouldn't work unless there was equal opportunity everywhere.

And like I said before, I know that throwing money at a problem won't fix it. You have to get to the root of it. But how many art classes were cut, how many classes are overpopulated, how many textbooks are out of date, because of cuts to education? But you'll never see them take a dime away from defense. Can we be more efficient? Absolutely. But there is something inherently amoral about removing resources from education so the wealthy can continue to enjoy their tax breaks.


Sun May 08, 2011 11:01 pm
Director
User avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:54 pm
Posts: 1484
Post Re: The People's Interests
Timmy Shoes wrote:
Reform the unions, reform education. There's a lot that needs fixin'. The question is, will it ever get the mending it so desperately needs? Or will the trends of anti-intellectualism and corporate influence continue to decay our society?


I don't understand what "corporate influence" means.

Quote:
Zuckerberg can from a well off upper middle class family. Larry Page was the son of wealthy computer scientists and innovators. Sergey Brinn was the son of well to do, highly educated professors.


Yes, they came from successful, educated families (most intelligence is inherited). They didn't come from Old Money. The notion that economic mobility doesn't exist just isn't backed up by fact.

I think that my family is a microcosm. My grandfather on my father's side got a bachelors degree after WW2 but never did anything with it and mostly worked as a custodian. He and my grandmother had nine kids. They didn't have much money. One of my aunts became the vice president of finance at a major US corporation. Another became a successful accountant at another company and now teaches accounting. An uncle got a doctorate in computer science and has a successful job. Another is an upper-level figure in an international company. But two of my uncles never advanced very far, nor did my father. On the other side of my family, my grandfather had a stable and well-paying job. They had four kids. Their standard of living was doubtlessly higher than my father's side. They stressed plenty of positive virtues but educational attainment wasn't one of them. All three of my mom's brothers got jobs in the mill and then when that closed down went on to other 'blue collar' occupations.

Lesson of the day: culture and intelligence matters.

Quote:
Name me an entrepreneur from the ghetto who isn't a rap star whose wealth even closely resembles that of these men.


Michael Steele comes to mind. Not an entrepreneur--just a guy who grew up dirt poor, went to Johns Hopkins, and became a very accomplished public servant.

Check out the numerous stories of immigrants who came to this country with next to no money and who prospered, and then had kids who went to elite universities despite facing discrimination due to our affirmative action programs.

Quote:
What's the likelihood of remaining in the social class you're born into in this country? I'd bet my bottom dollar it's upwards of 89%. Meritocracy wouldn't work unless there was equal opportunity everywhere.


No, you're confusing results with opportunity. You're arguing that because person x remains in the SES standing of his parents, he was held back. But person x likely did not place a high value on education. That's why people remain stagnant.

Quote:
And like I said before, I know that throwing money at a problem won't fix it. You have to get to the root of it. But how many art classes were cut, how many classes are overpopulated, how many textbooks are out of date, because of cuts to education? But you'll never see them take a dime away from defense. Can we be more efficient? Absolutely. But there is something inherently amoral about removing resources from education so the wealthy can continue to enjoy their tax breaks.


Class sizes don't matter. Class organization and structure do. Art classes don't really matter, either: do you want to raise a generation of starving artists or a generation of kids who can actually do calc? Textbooks don't matter. The fundamentals of calculus haven't changed in quite a while; you can use a textbook from 1970 and it won't make a bit of difference. The same holds for most other subjects, too. Moreover, textbooks aren't even necessary. Plug the kids into the Khan Academy for Math, Biology, Chemistry, Physics etc.

Tax cuts aren't designed to 'let the wealthy enjoy their tax breaks.' They're designed to stimulate the economy. You do that best by letting the productive class keep more of their money to invest it into job-creating activity.

_________________
I am a Leaf on the Wind. Watch Me Soar
---
http://www.leafontheweb.com


Sun May 08, 2011 11:15 pm
Profile
Post Re: The People's Interests
There is a correlation between poverty and education.

Blaming it on the parents is short-sighted. They bare an enormous responsibility, to be sure, but a poor genius has to work 100x million harder to get anywhere than a rich one.

What's corporate influence mean? Citizens United is what corporate influence means.

Art classes don't matter, huh? First off, who says an artist can't know calculus? Secondly, art (and music) classes do matter. You said culture matters... how can a culture exist without the arts? You'd rather have a society of one track minded mono-drones than well rounded people? Just because a kid takes an art class doesn't mean he's going to grow up to be a starving artist. Not to mention the fact that there's a significant correlation between music and mathematics. For someone who touts intelligence so highly, that was an incredibly vacuous statement.

You actually support Bush-era tax cuts, during a deficit? And last time I checked, the job market has been absolutely horrendous.

Regardless of anything we've been talking about, some kind of change needs to happen. Will it? Nobody can know for sure, but it's awfully hard to be optimistic about things.


Sun May 08, 2011 11:33 pm
Director
User avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:54 pm
Posts: 1484
Post Re: The People's Interests


Well duh ;) The culture in the poorer states is abysmal. People spend their lives mooching off the state. It's hideous.

Poorer people tend to not value education. They tend to reproduce younger and have kids that will in turn not value education. They tend to work lower skill jobs because they never get a sufficient education, because they fail to grasp the concept of long-term vs short-term rewards.


Quote:
but a poor genius has to work 100x million harder to get anywhere than a rich one.


This isn't actually the case. I grew up in a poor neighborhood--its crime rate is in the top 100 nationwide. My dad worked as a custodian. My parents made sacrifices to send me to the lowest cost private school we could find--the only one they could afford. I happened to gain an appreciation for education sometime before graduating high school. And now I'm pursuing a doctorate. And I'm not a genius. I count myself in the top 5%, sure. I'm not Mark Zuckerberg.

I don't want to pass judgment, but I am assuming that you did not grow up in a poor neighborhood. I did. And I can tell you that the resources are absolutely within the grasp of any kids who grow up in it. There are ample scholarship opportunities that are aimed at elevating such students, in fact giving them preferential treatment.

Think about what the actual barriers are. Can you name them? Here are a couple:
1) Parents who discourage them from seeking higher education.
2) Friends who discourage them from seeking higher education.

I would concede that it is more difficult for a poor student to get the same education as a rich student. It is not near what you think it is. Around the time I graduated high school, someone graduated from my public school and got a full scholarship to a very good local university. He likely is beginning his medical residency now. The only thing stopping other kids from joining him is a lack of performance.

Quote:
What's corporate influence mean? Citizens United is what corporate influence means.


That's a free speech matter--the ability of a group of people to organize and have their voice heard.


Quote:
Art classes don't matter, huh? First off, who says an artist can't know calculus? Secondly, art (and music) classes do matter. You said culture matters... how can a culture exist without the arts? You'd rather have a society of one track minded mono-drones than well rounded people? Just because a kid takes an art class doesn't mean he's going to grow up to be a starving artist. Not to mention the fact that there's a significant correlation between music and mathematics. For someone who touts intelligence so highly, that was an incredibly vacuous statement.


Education focus is a zero-sum games. Right now, Americans utterly suck at math. I'm more concerned about kids learning calculus than to draw sketches. You should be, too. We are in a position of needing to rely on importing our brainpower. I support a completely open immigration system, but that doesn't mean that I don't recognize that it is not sustainable in a global economy where China and India will eventually compete to keep and recruit those same people.


Quote:
You actually support Bush-era tax cuts, during a deficit? And last time I checked, the job market has been absolutely horrendous.


The job market sucks because of anti-growth policies and failed government intervention. The job market in countries that have sought free-market solutions (see, for example, Chile) is considerably better. And yes, during a deficit more than any other time you want to get money into the private market. You don't want the government swallowing up resources.

_________________
I am a Leaf on the Wind. Watch Me Soar
---
http://www.leafontheweb.com


Sun May 08, 2011 11:53 pm
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 43 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Exabot [Bot] and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by Vjacheslav Trushkin for Free Forum/DivisionCore.
Translated by Xaphos © 2007, 2008, 2009 phpBB.fr