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I'm sure that we all agree with this:

By Infoguy2118
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If you give a fuck at all about your fellow human beings and care anything about this planet, then you can not support Trump. Trump is the enemy. Not blue or red, but evil fucking orange.

Umbral Level 8 Oct 31, 2018

I don't agree. I think taxes should be based on income not vague concepts like 'middle class', and I think people with high incomes should pay a lot more. Similarly, there are plenty of socialists who think the penal system is useless and 'crime' should be redefined. If you don't want 'open borders', don't destroy countries so that their populations are forced to become refugees. Liberals are not often socialists.

CeliaVL Level 7 Oct 30, 2018

The right doesn't want open borders either. So who opened up Europe's borders if not liberals? What caused the mass migration was the collapse of Lybia which was done by NATO whose reasoning was liberal eg "freedom from Gaddafi" who provided free education and medical with best economy in Africa. Merkel's "all welcome" stance was lunacy.

powder Level 8 Oct 29, 2018

To suggest that bombing Libya was liberal is to take a strictly rightwing economic view of the word: no liberals I knew supported that nor any of the other Blairite wars which were all conservative in nature, through and through.

It is also more than a little revisionist to note Gaddafi's free education and medical programmes, while failing to note the wholesale destabilisation of some of his neighhours, the appalling abuses of human rights and the vicious conditions for women and minorities in his regime. He was after all a totalitarian dictator so not all roses there. Invasion was stupid and naive and you'd think we might learn that. But let's have less of the free education and medicine - given that many didn't have access to it, and murder of political opponents and certain minorities was the norm.

While you might claim that Merkel's policy was lunacy, I'm yet to hear to an opponent explain what we should be doing about the mass migration northwards into Europe. If you suggest that just letting them die will soon stop the flow, then I think you are mistaken: I've been and worked in the source countries - and the poverty and insecurity-fueled desperation is absolutely palpable. The 'lunacy' looks that way because of the failure to integrate fast, and the opportunity it gave to fascists to stir the pot.

Personally I'd be significantly more economically interventionist in their home countries. Further, we haven't seen anything yet either. We can wall ourselves in, but tens of millions are going to start moving as the new wars break out in Africa, as Bangladesh goes under the rising sea (as it is), as Islamic extremists continue to operate through the horn and the Mahgreb and their Christian contemporaries increase their play of the 'other' elsewhere in subsaharan Africa . Just watching the resultant migrants die does not appeal to many of us. Trying to find some solutions definitely seems better even if we are a little discomforted ourselves.

Attempting to respond humanely to the current great crises doesn't seem that much like lunacy to many of us. It looks like the better side of humanity.

@OwlInASack no doubt the destruction of Lybia was a neocon war, right wing. But as always, they go for "humanitarian reasons" to pacify the hand wringers.
Lybia was a stable country like Syria and Iraq. Dictators led them but old dictators who were into nation building in their old age, not the violent radicals of their youth. Yes they were strong, hard headed leaders as all successful leaders in the ME have to be. Lybia, like Assad's Syria and Hussain's Iraq, was secular in that minorities could exist and not get wiped out by a dominant Islam. Where did Gaddafi's gold go? What happened to the African dinar?
Africa is still recovering from colonialists so the solution is more colonial intervention? Perhaps we can try removing global corporations from raping these lands, let them have their revolutions by themselves and sort themselves out.
The lunacy of Merkel was opening borders and actually saying all refugees would be welcome in Germany. Aust went the other way, locking them up on small Pacific islands. There is a middle ground as both extremes are crazy.
The Syrian people do not want the US there, you are not helping nor invited. Spend your humanitarian help at home where it is needed and stop supporting regimes/ groups who fight with god on their side. The world has had a gutful of US intervention. The track record is not that great.

@powder Well - can nearly agree here: all those wars were disgraceful. Doesn't mean we have to just sit calmly alongside these fuckers though. Saddam after all gassed the Marsh Arabs and drained the marshes. Gadaffi funded Charles Taylor to immense destruction through the region. No easy answers - but doing nothing also seems like no answer. Hence my view that investment where you can is the way to go. Some regimes are markedly better than others for example. I;m not talking about humanitarian intervention in this case - though I think it has its limited place: after all, Oxfam has led the way in helping to achieve material reductions in subsaharan maternal mortality over the past 30 years. That's not to be sniffed at.

To call Gadaffi and Saddam 'hard headed leaders' is to whitewash who they were and what they did. They were brutal mass murderers. As were our own leaders - for sure. I look at the massacre currently occurring in the Yemen with US and UK support. The ongoing travesty which is the Palestinian camps. We are disgraceful. But we have to be clear about totalitarians and call them for what they are. We went from: 'you're completely welcome to spend your stolen cash on British assets and send your kids to our posh schools' to 'now you're a pain in the arse to our foreign policy so we're going to bomb you'.

You call Merkel's policy lunacy but what is this middle ground? What does it look like? Because there are millions fleeing poverty and war in Africa. What does a middle ground look like if it isn't accommodation?

It's also simplistic to say that the Syrian people do not want the US there. A more divided nation it would be hard to find: there really is no unified voice there at all...

And I'm a Brit by the way, not American. I could not agree more about the gutful of US intervention but I speak for myself, not the world there.

@OwlInASack reminds me of the old joke; why was the US so sure Saddam had WMD(gas)? They still had the receipts.
The middle ground is secure borders by managing immigration. The best way to combat poverty is to let those countries exploit their own resources and gift them technology to supply power, clean water and shelter. Economic migrants are the go getters which are draining the human resource. Dictators, isolate them eg every Saudi embassy should be shut down as they have abused that privilege to operate them. No easy answers. If I had a magic wand I would simply redirect military industrial complex resources into making renewable energy and robotic housing and gardens, clean up our oceans. Consumerism is killing us. I lean left in most areas but this PC crap went too far, people got jack of it and over corrected by swinging wildly right.
Apologies for assuming you were from the US.

@powder I’ve spent a lot of time in Sierra Leone - since I was 20. That’s a country where those in power have stripped all the assets with diligence and efficiency. When I first went there it was covered with tropical forest. Now it’s barren scrub. The poverty is absolutely terrible still.

Those folks were never going to run the economy for the people. Not a chance. Periodically the army waded in and kicks out the corrupt fuckers and new ones take over. Cue mass migration. Seen it twice in SL.

So can we be surprised if those folks will risk their lives in rafts crossing the med? Wouldn’t you?

It just isn’t ‘PC crap’ to recognise this and say we need to react positively. After all we definitely created the situation where this can occur in the first place.

The lurch to the right was based on lies and ear mongering. After all: migrants are always net contributors to the economy. And who the fuck are we to say: we’re alright jack, having fucked your country?

Can we handle 10 million new immigrants to the UK in say 3 years - to give an extreme example? Well - we could have a serious go. The alternative appears to be that we will watch as they die.

I cannot be party to that. And yes I’d open my home. And yes I’d pay more tax. And yes I’d create jobs for them.

@OwlInASack Political correctness will stifle debate. The obvious example is if you criticise Israel you are howled down as antisemitic no matter how reasonable the criticism is. Criticise Islam (ideology) you hate Muslims (people). Migration is good if it's managed. Large numbers very quickly does affect the host societies and clash cultures, it's unplanned. People are not asked. By offering support to these people, however noble, is a reaction on your part. I would prefer conscious action rather than forced reaction. In your own words despots rape countries yet money talks, look at Saudi Arabia. They have gotten away with murder and interfering with a corpse in an embassy because they have money which we, civilized world, happily accept.
Migrants are always net contributes to a country? Not in the short term. The fact is that Iraq, Lybia and Syria were stable countries and relatively prosperous. Foreign forces intervened and destabilised them the result being a massive refugee issue. If left alone they would have had their own revolutions in their own time. We still think we can force democracy on feudal societies. That we know better. The best leaders lead by example which people aspire to. America was the shinning light but those days are over. Syria was a shinning light for the middle east; secular where minorities could exist side by side. Lybia was the same for Africa. I'm talking just prior before they went to shit. No doubt unpleasant getting to that stage but that's where they were at. But dictorships are not PC, democracy is much better so let's force the issue. Didn't work there won't work sth America. Already rumblings by the yanks to get a coup going in Venezuela in between complaining about percieved interference in their national politics??????? I honestly don't know how they keep a straight face.

@powder the term PC seems to apply to concerns about fairness which don’t affect me. I look at the people using the term - like Jair Bolsonaro today - and I find it deeply unhelpful. It’s a stifling term,

The criticism of Israel is considered PC by many by the way. And criticism of Islam a) is typically lacking in nuance (ie Islam really isn’t a thing any more than christianity is) so we need sophistication when speaking about it and b) is often massively myopic. It’s a favourite hate topic on the right and yet the very things they hate about it they promote themselves. Obviously there are stacks of Muslims who do not fit the alt-right stereotype. There’s a network of Lesbian mosques for eg. The hard right just says: well they’re not Muslims then (with no sense of irony about the size of the No True Scotsman fallacy committed right there)

But more importantly to me: whatever the academic realities, I want to punch up not down. So while there might be many things about Islam which I cannot stand (and there are - like every religion) I’m not going to discuss them freely as that just enables those who will commit violence in an extension of that cause.

Another example is the attempted introduction of forced pro-trans language in Canada. Seems like a bad way to deal with the issues involved. I’m not going to stand by Jordan Peterson though, on this. I’ll take some mild language inconvenience if it helps to create a world where trans people stop killing themselves quite as much as they do.

So we’re not disagreeing on military intervention. But given that it’s happened and will carry on happening while there is a military establishment profiting from it, we have to deal with the results. Leaving migrants to die is not an option to me

Sure - much better if they can be dealt with at home. But that situation doesn’t exist. The migrants are there and are happening. So what do we now do? Managing them at home is not an option. The alternatives are: integrate or watch them die in their millions.

@OwlInASack displaced peoples is only going to get worse this century due to ecological degradation. I don't have the solution but we need to be pragmatic. Some situations will call for right wing action, and some will call for protection of individual rights to be defended....left wing action. I truly believe kids are the answer. You judge a society on how they treat their most disadvantaged and kids have little rights. The problem is they grow into adults. Stop indoctrinating kids and we can rid the world of racism, sexism, inequality.....all taught behaviours. Communism didn't work, but either is capitalist consumerism. With robotics and renewable energy there is no reason self sufficient communities with robotic gardens which has the potential to kill consumer driven societies. No need to work to make money. It's a nice dream.
Been good talking to you. Take care

@powder Funny you should mention it. I'm attending a two day robotics conference in London right now. I agree - this is the future...that and a little compassion. Or we're proper fucked.

Merkel's position has its roots in history. Nazi Germany forces many people to flee to avoid certain death. So it is understandable that the chancellor wanted to make a statement that distances the modern "good" Germany from the old Nazi version.

@OwlInASack I keep thinking I should jump in here, but you're covering the points I'd make better and in more detail than I could. Well said!

@PontifexMarximus makes sense. A shame Israel didn't have the same attitude.
I still think her very public "all welcome" statement didn't help though.


Oh, you silly, ignorant folk. Money is what will save America and if you can just be patient and let rich folk increase their wealth a little more, it's gonna trickle down through your fingers like the proverbial manna from heaven. You gotta have faith. Don't think about the middle-class anymore; that's gone with the dinosaurs. They weren't much use to society with all their holy-god values and no money. Didn't you read about the Good Samaritan? He could help the poor because he was rich. And what will help the rich keep that money the poor so badly need? Guns, guns and more guns. And a bit more faith in money. What's education gonna do for you except turn your sons into faggots! Equality, ditto! Like we didn't believe in evolution. So stop all this mamby-pamby 'we need to vote' nonsense and stay home on Tuesday. Heck, stay home every day. That money's coming up as sure as sores on Stormy's vagina, you wait.

brentan Level 8 Oct 29, 2018

That seems reasonable. Unfortunately, we are not in a sensible age.

JimG Level 8 Oct 29, 2018
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