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TwinSwords 01-05-2012 08:18 AM

Re: Chickenhawkery
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 236286)
It's coarse language, but I don't think it's demonizing. It's not like randomly calling someone a retard or a Nazi.

Paul is raising a fair question about a generation of men who did everything possible to avoid military service and exposing themselves or their loved ones to personal danger or sacrifice, while ravenously endorsing war and blithely sending others off to die and suffer the disabilities and traumas of combat.

Dick Cheney epitomized this type of coward, hypocrite and opportunist.

Wow, three more bombs! (Coward, hypocrite, and opportunist!)

But I actually agree with you. I think the language and the descriptions of Gingrich and Cheney are fine -- indeed, appropriate. Indeed, more appropriate than more mealy-mouthed language that gives them respect they don't deserve. I was just a little surprised to see you using such language, but I'm happy you are.

Cheers. Off to work.

Unit 01-05-2012 08:36 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TwinSwords (Post 236297)
Yeah. To this I will add that the best evidence against the libertarian human nature argument (which holds that we can count on rational human behavior, e.g., the willingness to serve blacks if only to make a profit) is reality itself -- the Jim Crow South. The Southern states showed quite clearly during the 1940s-1960s that they were willing to take a huge economic hit in order to preserve the racial purity of their apartheid state. They understood perfectly well that their insistence on maintaining a two tiered society was costing them all kinds of income -- from tourism, from black customers, from businesses that refused to locate in the South, etc. -- but they deemed Jim Crow to be more important.

Libertarianism, like Marxism, fails because it fails to accept human nature for what it is.

But Jim Crow was govt regulation. In other words voters had to use govt coercion to enforce discrimination by businesses, more than likely without such regulation the discrimination would have faded away. That's the argument.

Unit 01-05-2012 08:39 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 236296)
There's just no way to say "some of my best friends are..." that doesn't sound self-serving. Plus, people notoriously make exceptions for their friends. It's not a defensible argumnet.

Why not? Some of my best friends are Jewish and this makes me more sensitive to anti-semitism because I have a first hand experience of how my friends feel when faced with that problem.

Unit 01-05-2012 08:41 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 236295)
But not with legally recognized groups, not with the idea that a disparate impact is not a valid argument against a facially neutral law, which is what TS is arguing. At least, not based on the libertarians I know or my understanding of libertarianism. For example, they seem to think racism is not a longterm problem, as businesses would not be rational in discriminating, but only on focusing on more relevant "groups," such as those good at whatever the job requires. The fact that customers/clients might care about race, etc. seems to them not a concern.

Yes, I think you're right. Hayek had a preference for generic laws that did not go into details and applied to everyone equally. But libertarians are hardly alone in preferring equality in front of the law.

stephanie 01-05-2012 10:48 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TwinSwords (Post 236297)
Libertarianism, like Marxism, fails because it fails to accept human nature for what it is.

Precisely.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 11:22 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Unit (Post 236299)
But Jim Crow was govt regulation. In other words voters had to use govt coercion to enforce discrimination by businesses, more than likely without such regulation the discrimination would have faded away. That's the argument.

and it's a good one. Can you think of an example where discrimination unenforced by government coercion fell away because of its own dead weight. Off the top of my head, it seems that there haven't been any laws specific to gays (except abolishing don't ask don't tell, which is recent) and yet the hatred, fear and discrimination of gays has diminished greatly in the last decade or so.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 11:28 AM

Re: Means and Ends (Joshua Cohen & Glenn Loury)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Diane1976 (Post 236091)

That's why I like Obama. I don't find him particularly ideological. He just seems to be trying to be pragmatic, to use his position in whatever way seems to make sense, and also, of course, with a consideration of what it might take to get himself elected again. But that's more or less the same as understanding he has to serve the people. He just has to think more about the fact that we don't mob rule, i.e. catering to whatever the polls say.

I think I've said this before but my take on Obama doing well is probably quite different than your take. I think I agree that he, himself, isn't ideological. But I get the impression that the people behind him are. I know it's been said before but he seems a bit like the manipulated Manchurian candidate to me.

As for politicians doing stuff for me...I'd rather they didn't. But I don't want them to anything for anyone else either. I think they need to make and enforce equitable, sensible laws and then go home.

stephanie 01-05-2012 11:32 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236315)
Off the top of my head, it seems that there haven't been any laws specific to gays (except abolishing don't ask don't tell, which is recent) and yet the hatred, fear and discrimination of gays has diminished greatly in the last decade or so.

There has been a move toward including gays in non-discrimination laws. The argument of those more libertarian-inclined (among others, including me) is that when we start doing this, as well as when we start recognizing distinctions as ones deserving of heightened scrutiny by the courts, is not long before when we start recognizing as a society that such discrimination is wrong. (The same argument would point out that the acceptance of the Griswold v. Connecticut argument is largely by a world that sees laws against contraceptives as silly and unpassable.)

That said, employers vary a lot, and that one sees discrimination as silly doesn't mean that others will or that even you won't prefer people like you, so I think such laws serve a purpose.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 12:08 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 236317)
There has been a move toward including gays in non-discrimination laws. The argument of those more libertarian-inclined (among others, including me) is that when we start doing this, as well as when we start recognizing distinctions as ones deserving of heightened scrutiny by the courts, is not long before when we start recognizing as a society that such discrimination is wrong.

I'm sorry, I don't understand this. You seem to be saying that libertarians would support non-discrimination laws and that this somehow leads (in some people's minds) to thinking that discrimination is wrong.
I would say that in a perfect libertarian schema anti discrimination laws would be unneccessary. The government would never be allowed to make laws that discriminated and people otherwise could discriminate to their heart's content.

Quote:

That said, employers vary a lot, and that one sees discrimination as silly doesn't mean that others will or that even you won't prefer people like you, so I think such laws serve a purpose
Well, they certainly serve a purpose, one of which is to keep lawyers employed. I guess I am generally against laws that prohibit employers from discriminating, mostly because it just spawns more and more law. Did you know the the EEOC is considering requiring employers to abandon high school graduation requirements if the employee has a learning disability? That'll be fun to enforce.

Quote:

Employers are facing more uncertainty in the wake of a letter from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission warning them that requiring a high school diploma from a job applicant might violate the Americans with Disabilities Act.

stephanie 01-05-2012 12:12 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236319)
I'm sorry, I don't understand this. You seem to be saying that libertarians would support non-discrimination laws

No, I am not saying that and can't see how you got that. This must be
some more of the fake ignorance you glory in.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 12:20 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 236320)
No, I am not saying that and can't see how you got that. This must be
some more of the fake ignorance you glory in.

really? then what does this mean, stephanie?

Quote:

There has been a move toward including gays in non-discrimination laws. The argument of those more libertarian-inclined (among others, including me) is that when we start doing this, as well as when we start recognizing distinctions as ones deserving of heightened scrutiny by the courts, is not long before when we start recognizing as a society that such discrimination is wrong.
I know what you said was really deep and nuanced and all but it certainly doesn't seem far afield of the way I characterized it. You seem to be saying that libertarians would support non-discrimination laws

AemJeff 01-05-2012 12:30 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236321)
really? then what does this mean, stephanie?



I know what you said was really deep and nuanced and all but it certainly doesn't seem far afield of the way I characterized it. You seem to be saying that libertarians would support non-discrimination laws

You seem to be saying that you don't fully understand the English language and that you're resentful of those who apparently have a better grasp of it. I don't think that's the message you really want to convey. I'm pretty sure that the message to which you're referring here conveyed exactly what its sender intended, if one bothers to read it.

stephanie 01-05-2012 01:08 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 236322)
You seem to be saying that you don't fully understand the English language and that you're resentful of those who apparently have a better grasp of it. I don't think that's the message you really want to convey. I'm pretty sure that the message to which you're referring here conveyed exactly what its sender intended, if one bothers to read it.

Heh.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 01:11 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 236322)
You seem to be saying that you don't fully understand the English language and that you're resentful of those who apparently have a better grasp of it. I don't think that's the message you really want to convey. I'm pretty sure that the message to which you're referring here conveyed exactly what its sender intended, if one bothers to read it.

Well you would wouldn't you, Jeff? No matter what, you gotta be a team player.

But to your point. I have a pretty good grasp of the English language...so much so that I can spot obfuscation and incoherent thinking masked as nuance a mile away. And, I enjoy pointing it out.

And just to be clear, in this instance I didn't think Stephanie was incoherent...just wrong about the libertarian position.

stephanie 01-05-2012 01:12 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236321)
really? then what does this mean, stephanie?

What I said:

Quote:

There has been a move toward including gays in non-discrimination laws. The argument of those more libertarian-inclined (among others, including me) is that when we start doing this, as well as when we start recognizing distinctions as ones deserving of heightened scrutiny by the courts, is not long before when we start recognizing as a society that such discrimination is wrong
To simplify -- not that this should be necessary, unless I assume readers are idiots, like badhat seems to like to portray herself -- the libertarian argument is that laws will be passed and rights will be recognized only when society has already turned against the discrimination in question.

Quote:

I know what you said was really deep and nuanced and all but it certainly doesn't seem far afield of the way I characterized it.
Um, no. I don't claim deep and nuanced. You do seem weirdly dedicated to misinterpretation. Or, you know, lying.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 01:26 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 236325)
To simplify -- not that this should be necessary, unless I assume readers are idiots, like badhat seems to like to portray herself -- the libertarian argument is that laws will be passed and rights will be recognized only when society has already turned against the discrimination in question.


Um, no. I don't claim deep and nuanced. You do seem weirdly dedicated to misinterpretation. Or, you know, lying.

a lying idiot...charming.

So this is your point...

the libertarian argument is that laws will be passed and rights will be recognized only when society has already turned against the discrimination in question.

This may be true but as you can see from my first post, that is not my understanding of the libertarian argument. I would like to see this thought expressed in some libertarian manifesto if it is, in fact, so.

It seems to have some unexplained parts. What laws will be passed? What rights will be recognized? Or is this simply a libertarian analysis of how humans will proceed from discrimination to non-discrimination? From what I know libertarians see many laws as unnecessary.

AemJeff 01-05-2012 02:23 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236324)
Well you would wouldn't you, Jeff? No matter what, you gotta be a team player.

But to your point. I have a pretty good grasp of the English language...so much so that I can spot obfuscation and incoherent thinking masked as nuance a mile away. And, I enjoy pointing it out.

And just to be clear, in this instance I didn't think Stephanie was incoherent...just wrong about the libertarian position.

Team? I'll quote Leonard Cohen:

Quote:

I'm on the side that's always lost
Against the side of Heaven
I'm on the side of Snake-eyes tossed
Against the side of Seven.
And I've read the Bill of Human Rights
And some of it was true
But there wasn't any burden left
So I'm laying it on you.
I don't take sides the way you've implied.

And what you called my "point" wasn't. I was pretty explicit in the last sentence of my post.

badhatharry 01-05-2012 04:13 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 236329)
I don't take sides the way you've implied.

And what you called my "point" wasn't. I was pretty explicit in the last sentence of my post.

No, you weren't. Here's the last sentence:

I'm pretty sure that the message to which you're referring here conveyed exactly what its sender intended, if one bothers to read it.

Here's the definition of explicit: fully revealed or expressed without vagueness, implication, or ambiguity : leaving no question as to meaning or intent

Say what you mean, Jeff. The mystery business isn't compelling.

handle 01-05-2012 06:57 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236331)
No, you weren't. Here's the last sentence:

I'm pretty sure that the message to which you're referring here conveyed exactly what its sender intended, if one bothers to read it.

Here's the definition of explicit: fully revealed or expressed without vagueness, implication, or ambiguity : leaving no question as to meaning or intent

Say what you mean, Jeff. The mystery business isn't compelling.

I found Stephanie's (added: Jeff's too) post to be very explicit. And I am not on any team, especially the libertarian one.
Slow down, I think you will avoid a lot of conflict and confusion, unless of course this is what you seek.

sugarkang 01-05-2012 10:51 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Unit (Post 236300)
Why not? Some of my best friends are Jewish and this makes me more sensitive to anti-semitism because I have a first hand experience of how my friends feel when faced with that problem.

Precisely. If the argument is that having friends of X group doesn't sufficiently apprise one of all the trials and tribulations of that group, then that's something to be discussed further. What seems preposterous is to allege that having friends of X group precludes one from having an opinion or taken seriously when one expresses it.

miceelf 01-05-2012 11:03 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236351)
If the argument is that having friends of X group doesn't sufficiently apprise one of all the trials and tribulations of that group, then that's something to be discussed further.

That's one objection people might have.

Another is that there are a lot of asymmetrical friendships out there where one person may think the other person is a friend and can be open and honest with them and the other person might not. To whit- a long time ago in a galaxy far away, a Black friend I had known a long time happened to forget I was in a group where there was a discussion and she said a whole bunch of stuff to a couple of other Black people about race I didn't know she thought and wouldn't have ever heard had she not forgotten I was there.

And, quite frankly, one can have warm friendships and feel genuine affection for people one thinks is inferior. A lot of male family members love women in the exact same way they love small children or dogs or horses- lesser beings but completely wonderful companions. They'd describe themselves as having a lot of female friends in the same way that a kid describes Spot as his friend. It's certainly harder to see a friend as inferior, but it's by no means impossible.

sugarkang 01-05-2012 11:29 PM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by miceelf (Post 236353)
It's certainly harder to see a friend as inferior, but it's by no means impossible.

I agree, but that doesn't affect my argument. People should be able to voice opinions, including wrong ones.

miceelf 01-06-2012 12:04 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236355)
I agree, but that doesn't affect my argument. People should be able to voice opinions, including wrong ones.

Sure including the opinion that "some of my best friends are black" is a silly thing to say in response to an accusation of racism.
I didn't say anything to suggest that people not be able to voice opinions, right, wrong or indifferent.

sugarkang 01-06-2012 12:43 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236331)
Say what you mean, Jeff. The mystery business isn't compelling.

Good ole masochistic Harry. I noticed the unqualified assertion that you were a liar and then Jeff piling on afterward. He does have a habit of doing that, but I don't know why you care about his opinions. His posts look worthwhile on the surface, but lack meaningful content -- just like his favorite food which, coincidentally, looks like a zero. Your masochism is your own decision.

As to your libertarian argument, you are correct that some libertarians hold those views. Ron Paul would probably be closer to that line of thinking, though I am not. The reason why white nationalists support Ron Paul (disregard the sensationalist headline; I think Cenk was fair) is because he would be in favor of equal laws and equal legal treatment for everyone. The very mention of race, religion, gender or age in law is per se discrimination. So, when liberals say they favor "anti-discrimination" they mean to say that they favor pro-discriminatory legislation that leads to less-discriminatory outcomes. We see this line of reasoning in much of the legislation they propose. A flat tax would treat everyone equally, but equal treatment wouldn't be fair. In other words, they favor social engineering and to some extent I agree with them. I think we all know why.

This rationale made sense in the 1960s and I think, on balance, it was the right call to make. There's a contrarian argument that black outcomes would have been better if we had just left it all alone. That is, forced integration and welfare was the main destroyer of black communities because it disrupted their social infrastructure. It's one possible explanation why other minorities in this country have fared better in comparison. On the whole, I don't find it conclusively persuasive, but I think there's some merit to the argument. I believe Ron Paul thinks along these lines. It makes sense given that he supported the Civil Rights Movement, supported Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks, but did not support a portion of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

sugarkang 01-06-2012 12:51 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by miceelf (Post 236357)
Sure including the opinion that "some of my best friends are black" is a silly thing to say in response to an accusation of racism.

Really? I think it's precisely relevant. It certainly precludes the possibility of our very worst fears of racism, i.e., physical violence, does it not? It doesn't tell you everything about the person making the claim, but do you really expect someone to go into their entire feelings about race every time a person is accused?

The problem with racism is that the accusation alone is "expensive." People go to ridiculous lengths just to avoid the charge. It's a shame.

miceelf 01-06-2012 02:09 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236361)
Really? I think it's precisely relevant.

It's your right to think so. It's my right to disagree. Isn't it?

badhatharry 01-06-2012 02:10 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by miceelf (Post 236357)
Sure including the opinion that "some of my best friends are black" is a silly thing to say in response to an accusation of racism.
I didn't say anything to suggest that people not be able to voice opinions, right, wrong or indifferent.

What would be your recommended response to the accusation of racism?

miceelf 01-06-2012 02:41 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 236370)
What would be your recommended response to the accusation of racism?

Disagree. and if you like, state why you think it isn't true. I wouldn't typically go on to the second part, although if I was feeling frisky I might ask the accuser to provide evidence.

Were I to be in an especially self-revealing mood and decided to state why I think it isn't true, I'd try to avoid using the most cliched and denigrated response to the accusation known to man, fair or unfair.

But that's just my suggestion. I don't expect anyone to follow anything a stranger says on the intertubes, although I reserve the right to continue to spout my opinions just as everyone else does.

sugarkang 01-06-2012 03:06 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by miceelf (Post 236369)
It's your right to think so. It's my right to disagree. Isn't it?

Absolutely. I also made an argument in my last reply, but you didn't respond to it except to say that you disagreed.

Florian 01-06-2012 04:15 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by miceelf (Post 236372)
Were I to be in an especially self-revealing mood and decided to state why I think it isn't true, I'd try to avoid using the most cliched and denigrated response to the accusation known to man, fair or unfair.

You nailed it. Using a cliché that is almost universally understood to imply that the speaker is being less than candid, that he may in fact harbor racist feelings, defeats the purpose of communication. This cliché was once a favorite of anti-semites. You would have to be tone-deaf to language usage and history to use it with a straight face.

sugarkang 01-06-2012 04:38 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 236376)
You nailed it. Using a cliché that is almost universally understood to imply that the speaker is being less than candid, that he may in fact harbor racist feelings, defeats the purpose of communication.

Then how does one who is unjustly accused exculpate himself? Plead the 5th?

"You wouldn't be silent if you've got nothing to hide." Gestapo reasoning used by some people on this board. This is how witches get burned alive.

False accusations alone are enough to ruin people's reputations.

Florian 01-06-2012 05:00 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236378)
Then how does one who is unjustly accused exculpate himself? Plead the 5th?

"You wouldn't be silent if you've got nothing to hide." Gestapo reasoning used by some people on this board. This is how witches get burned alive.

False accusations alone are enough to ruin people's reputations.

I think you are making too much of this. Accusations of racism? Exculpation? Come on, only acts matter, not words.

Personally, I would never accuse anyone of racism if the only evidence I had were this particular cliché ("Some of my best friends are blacks, Jews, or eskimos or whatever"). I would just find it odd that anyone could be so tone-deaf as to use it.

sugarkang 01-06-2012 05:34 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 236379)
I think you are making too much of this. Accusations of racism? Exculpation? Come on, only acts matter, not words.

Acts matter for crimes. Words matter for careers and reputations. So, answer the question. If someone accused you of racism and other people were inclined to believe it but were waiting for you to come up with an answer, what would you say? Then imagine that this was happening to DSK in a community of TwinSwords.

Awaiting your reply.

Sulla the Dictator 01-06-2012 06:17 AM

Re: Chickenhawkery
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TwinSwords (Post 236298)
Wow, three more bombs! (Coward, hypocrite, and opportunist!)

But I actually agree with you. I think the language and the descriptions of Gingrich and Cheney are fine -- indeed, appropriate. Indeed, more appropriate than more mealy-mouthed language that gives them respect they don't deserve. I was just a little surprised to see you using such language, but I'm happy you are.

Cheers. Off to work.

Is Obama a chickenhawk? And Bill Clinton?

Florian 01-06-2012 06:31 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236381)
Acts matter for crimes. Words matter for careers and reputations. So, answer the question. If someone accused you of racism and other people were inclined to believe it but were waiting for you to come up with an answer, what would you say? Then imagine that this was happening to DSK in a community of TwinSwords.

Awaiting your reply.

I certainly wouldn't begin by saying, "Some of my best friends are...." For the reason myceelf and I gave. It is a poisoned cliché.

In truth, there is no defense against charges like racism, or anti-semitism, or "homophobia," or "Islamophobia" etc. when they are levelled at individuals on the basis of suppositions (surmises) about their feelings, beliefs, or biases--without any other evidence. What can I say if someone accuses me of something of which I know I am guiltless? If someone suspects me or accuses me of not liking a certain class of people, of hating them or fearing them, what else can I say but, "No, you are wrong." Only I know my own mind (heart).

DSK was accused (suspected) of rape before anyone really knew what had happened. But rape is a crime, not a thought. I am not sure why you have brought Twinswords into this. Has he accused you of racism?

Sulla the Dictator 01-06-2012 06:35 AM

Re: Ask LBJ, To Rebut Paul
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 236281)
Would you care to explain? Or do you, like sugarkang, expect me to accept some Humpty-Dumpty definition of empire? As you well know words have a history, they are history in fact.

Americans, I am afraid, tend to confuse military hegemony (=the most powerful military and arsenal of weaponry ) with empire. They are not the same. No more than the comicbook superheroes of Hollywood (Batman, Terminator etc. etc) are true heroes.

I would think the opposite, actually. Most Americans are very uncomfortable thinking of us as an "Empire".

But strictly speaking, that is exactly what we have been since the earliest days of the nation. Just within the continental United States. An Empire suggests a variety of distinct peoples or cultures subordinated beneath a single government, as well as a certain scale in terms of territory. The United States has fit both of those categories since the 1840s with the annexation of entire Indian nations under imperium. Then if you count the settling of state sovereignty, you gradually change "states" into "provinces". Then add Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico, all three foreign possessions with differing ethnic populations and languages annexed and absorbed every bit as much as Cisalpine Gaul.

That's without even arguing the point about client states.

Florian 01-06-2012 06:59 AM

Re: Ask LBJ, To Rebut Paul
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sulla the Dictator (Post 236384)
I would think the opposite, actually. Most Americans are very uncomfortable thinking of us as an "Empire".

But strictly speaking, that is exactly what we have been since the earliest days of the nation. Just within the continental United States. An Empire suggests a variety of distinct peoples or cultures subordinated beneath a single government, as well as a certain scale in terms of territory. The United States has fit both of those categories since the 1840s with the annexation of entire Indian nations under imperium. Then if you count the settling of state sovereignty, you gradually change "states" into "provinces". Then add Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico, all three foreign possessions with differing ethnic populations and languages annexed and absorbed every bit as much as Cisalpine Gaul.

That's without even arguing the point about client states.

As long as you say, "subordinated beneath a single government" I have no objection to calling the US an empire. Multi-ethnic? Not really. Anglo-Saxon culture absorbed all the other ethnic groups--the melting pot. To non-Americans this is perhaps more obvious than it is to you.

I was thinking mainly in terms of past, truly multi-ethnic empires--the Ottoman Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, to say nothing of the Dutch, the British, the French empires etc. In the contemporary world situation, the US is not by any means an empire in relation to other states. It is simply the military hegemon after the collapse of the (multi-ethnic) Soviet Empire.

miceelf 01-06-2012 07:16 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236374)
Absolutely. I also made an argument in my last reply, but you didn't respond to it except to say that you disagreed.

Well, it's kind of old ground, isn't it?

These days, most people accused of racism aren't being accused of being violent racists; they're being accused of believing a given race is inferior and/or treating people differently based on their race.

We also differ greatly on how bad it is for someone to be accused of racism. I generally find it more useful to say that a given thought or deed is racist rather than a person is, but that's because i believe most people are influenced by racism. I also don't think there's a huge epidemic of bogus (or for that matter real) charges of racism floating around these days. So I don't think it's a huge problem in terms of either how bad it is if it hapens and how often it happens.

miceelf 01-06-2012 07:19 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 236378)
Then how does one who is unjustly accused exculpate himself? Plead the 5th?

"You wouldn't be silent if you've got nothing to hide."

I don't recall such a quote from this forum.

I also don't see why asking for evidence is such a horrible thing, or (if we decide that such a charge is supposed to be answered by evidence, who is going to be predisposed to both 1) believe such a charge and 2) be convinced if you say you are friends with a Black person. Anyone who is convinced by 2, in my experience, doesn't need convincing.

badhatharry 01-06-2012 11:35 AM

Re: LOL
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 236376)
You nailed it. Using a cliché that is almost universally understood to imply that the speaker is being less than candid, that he may in fact harbor racist feelings, defeats the purpose of communication. This cliché was once a favorite of anti-semites. You would have to be tone-deaf to language usage and history to use it with a straight face.

Just because it's understood to be that way doesn't mean that it is that way. It's a cliche we ignorants in America use to make fun of the situation.


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