The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth.

We want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth - and that is precisely the problem. In this post-truth era we are all in denial of the truth as presented to us by experts, the media and politicians. We don't believe any of it. Hence we go to sites we think we can trust because they peddle the bias we want to believe in. We choose the truth we want to believe.

 

It is far from the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth; it is a version peddled to satisfy our tribal positions, to exaggerate, give bias and inflame. It undermines the truth.

 

None of us are good judges of who to believe. We are all being manipulated by someone. Those who believe otherwise are fools.


This is the post-truth era. There is no truth and our own judgement is highly suspect.

 

This lack of belief in experts, scientists, the media and politicians is very destabilising. The belief in truth is what binds society together. Without it we have anarchy. Anarchy is not good. It is a place where the rich, powerful and biggest bullies exploit everyone else with impunity in all manner of ways.

 

How do we get back to believing that these people are spouting truth?

 

People like Trump are busy undermining the truth and our institutions and spreading their own version of truth for their own reasons (Power and Wealth). If this continues then the fabric of our society falls apart. The cement is gone and the fiction breaks down. There is no unifying force.

 

The current division and tribal hatred is a result of this tear in the fabric of society. The unifying fiction is dissolving. God, King (the President) and Country no longer holds everyone together. We're divided. Too few people believe in that fiction anymore. We think we're being lied to and exploited.

 

The holocaust, Jews, Trump, climate change, 9/11, Brexit, education, extinction rate, overpopulation, the UN, NATO,  - we choose what we believe on political tribal grounds and gather the stats to back up our own view. We do not trust the experts, the politicians or the media. We even reject history. Instead it is superstition, intuition and our flawed judgement that is brought to bear.

 

The result is division and hate. Society is falling apart.

 

How do we reclaim the truth before disaster hits?

Comments

opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 7:32am
It is my contention that without unbiased information from the media we cannot have democracy.
Although our media has bias I do not believe it is anywhere near as bad as some make out. Choosing to take information from sites with extreme bias is nowhere near preferential. Those sites are blatant tools of propaganda.
Much of the nonsense I read that comes from these sites is complete propaganda - Europe swamped and lost, climate change a myth, sharia law imminent, rape capitals, knife capitals, rapists and terrorists, Tommy Robinson (the fascist) a voice of reason, no-go areas - it's all exaggeration and propaganda. The frightening thing is that many people believe this in preference to mainstream news. It's far worse. It's deliberate lies.
Dino Manalis Added Aug 16, 2018 - 9:13am
 It's political bias, they don't care whether it's true or not.  It begins with basic morals and values to reach the plain truth.
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 10:06am
Dino - sooner or later we are going to have to put trust in someone - I suggest it's the scientists and experts!
Bill H. Added Aug 16, 2018 - 10:51am
 
Oph- I think the issue with the two main news sources that Trump constantly bashes here in the US (CNN/MSNBC) is that they are constantly all over him. Of course, he fuels the fire by creating never-ending controversies. tweets, and constantly trying to get away with lies that create a never-ending cycle of fact checking and criticism. This keeps Trump on the cycle of trying to protect his ego by bashing the journalists which gives them even more reason to respond. Fox News for the most part just exists to parrot the party line and be the voice of Trump.
Trump is in an uncomfortable position compared to what he was used to in his prior life. He can no longer just sit behind a desk and order his few subservient people to handle his business for him. He is now actually a servant of the people (who would know?) and is under the scrutiny of all. He is obviously unable to handle criticism and thinks he can make all of the decisions himself.
As long as Trump sees his mission is to create hate, division, and chaos, the press will continue to taunt him and keep him under check. If we ever loose the free press, we will loose the country and most of the rights we take for granted.
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 11:11am
Bill - I find it incredible to look at the way he operates creating such division and hatred. Attacking the press is dangerous and stupid - particularly if you are an inveterate liar:
This is a catalogue of Trump's 3001 blatant lies - https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/23/opinion/trumps-lies.html
When you go calling all the news fake news and then deliberately put out your own lies you are asking for it!
Trump is a liar.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 16, 2018 - 1:47pm
Opher
 
"We want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth - and that is precisely the problem. In this post-truth era we are all in denial of the truth as presented to us by experts, the media and politicians. We don't believe any of it. Hence we go to sites we think we can trust because they peddle the bias we want to believe in. We choose the truth we want to believe."
 
Then
 
"It is my contention that without unbiased information from the media we cannot have democracy."
 
Media Double Down After New York Times Gets Busted Peddling Fake News
 
http://thefederalist.com/2018/05/28/media-double-down-after-new-york-times-gets-busted-peddling-fake-news/
 
Opher, where do you get pure truth in news reporting of the manufacture thereof from political dogma?
 
BBC? London Times, 10 of the lasting London tabloids? USA Today?
 
Are your posts unbiased, or, do you deal in pure truth?
 
 
 
 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 16, 2018 - 1:54pm
Bill H.
 
"As long as Trump sees his mission is to create hate, division, and chaos, the press will continue to taunt him and keep him under check. "
 
Trump is "under check?" What does that mean? The press directs his actions after some political scolding?
 
It is the progressives or their stooges that " are creat[ing]  hate, division, and chaos,..."
 
Did you pay attention to the content of HRC's speeches when she was 'running' for office? No hate there. No labeling of the opposition as a basket of deplorables? Then, there is Pelosi and many more. 
 
DJT continues to keep promises and MAGA and the lefties cannot stand the success. 
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 1:55pm
rycK - as you know - I always deal in truth.
There is always bias in all news but that doesn't mean we replace it all with propaganda from fake sites.
Trump is the biggest liar of all - 
This is a catalogue of Trump's 3001 blatant lies - https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/23/opinion/trumps-lies.html
Bill H. Added Aug 16, 2018 - 2:31pm
 
Sorry rycK - If Trump is not scrutinized and exposed, he could very well manipulate our country toward a dictatorship. Thank goodness we still have a free press that is able to do the job that they were meant to do.
Katharine Otto Added Aug 16, 2018 - 2:43pm
Opher,
I have no doubt that you are writing your truth, but it is not my truth.  Who is right?  My truth is to respect everyone's point of view but not necessarily to believe all of what anyone says.  People may have ideas I've never considered, be misinformed, or think they know more than they do.  What we seem to lack is the skill for critical thinking and analysis of what we hear, in light of our own values and beliefs.  
 
Why is the world so obsessed with Donald Trump?  Turn off the television and don't check Twitter, if he offends you.  His power comes from his ability to get to you and people like you.   It's almost comical to read the almost rabid preoccupation with Trump in the New York Times.  Yes, he seems to bring out the worst in people, individually and severally, but I don't see anyone slapping duct tape across his mouth.  Why not?  If nothing else, he is the consummate entertainer.
 
When institutional spokespersons speak for "scientists," or governments, or for the media, I get suspicious.  I have this idea there is no ultimate truth.  Even if there is, neither "science" nor anyone else has found it.
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 2:50pm
Bill - I completely agree. From here it looks as if the States is on the road to tyranny and fascism.
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 2:53pm
Katharine - I agree - there is no ultimate truth. But the media is not the enemy. It has bias and it exaggerates. It is not to be trusted. But compared to the right-wing propaganda sites with their outright lies and inflammatory garbage they are purveyors of truth. Compared to the media Trump is a complete liar:
This is a catalogue of Trump's 3001 blatant lies - https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/23/opinion/trumps-lies.html
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 2:55pm
Katharine - BTW - the world is transfixed precisely because this is such a dangerous game. Stirring up this amount of hatred and division could lead to a civil war and the collapse of democracy. That is the end of America. What then for the world?
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 16, 2018 - 3:11pm
Bill H.
 
"Sorry rycK - If Trump is not scrutinized and exposed, he could very well manipulate our country toward a dictatorship. Thank goodness we still have a free press that is able to do the job that they were meant to do."
 
Like what FDR  tried to do?
 
"...we still have a free press [Fox News, for example]  that cannot be muzzled] as Obama wanted] that is able to do the job that they were meant to do."
 
We need to scrutinize and expose rabid left-wing people like Bernie, Nancy, and the new wonder Cortez.
 
It is fun too.
 
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 3:41pm
rycK and what is wrong with FDR??
Bill Kamps Added Aug 16, 2018 - 4:00pm
It is my contention that without unbiased information from the media we cannot have democracy.
 
Tell what point in history we had unbiased information from the press?  It was always edited and biased.  It is more obvious now, but "truth" is a funny thing since it is open to interpretation, bias, and just plain being mistaken. 
 
Yes, the internet exaggerates things, and is often like drinking information from a fire hose.  It is difficult to know what is true  and what is not, because it is easy to create false facts.  But that doesnt mean there was a point in time when we had access to the truth, it just means the bias was better disguised, which is not the same thing.
Benjamin Goldstein Added Aug 16, 2018 - 4:59pm
Cannot make it past your first paragraph. We all only read things with our bias blah blah blah. Yet, we are all on WB and read stuff that does not support our views.
 
The sound reaction to lazy writing is lazy reading.
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 5:55pm
Benjamin - well you obviously don't do you?
opher goodwin Added Aug 16, 2018 - 5:56pm
Bill - I think there is and always has been a good deal of good accurate reporting - one has to pick one's way through it.
Jeffry Gilbert Added Aug 16, 2018 - 11:49pm
None of us are good judges of who to believe.
 
Who's "us" Kemosabe? 
 
You make the classic mistake of thinking everyone else thinks just like you or even worse that they should. 
 
James Travil Added Aug 16, 2018 - 11:55pm
My personal belief is that you will find your truth in what you believe. In those who cater to your biases. But don't dare tell you an absolute truth if it goes against your deeply held beliefs. Regardless the establishment corporate mainstream media outlets are not in the business of truth or journalism (see my link to the story of CNN and the BBC running pro-war psyops fake news in Lynn's article). The closer you wish to get to the truth the further away from that MSN yellow journalism and the closer to alternative independent media you go. Unless you like lies that is. I for one am sick of it. I don't need or want anyone else to censor my information in the interest of eliminating "fake news" I can do that myself, and usually what social media labels as fake is truth, and the lies are pushed as true. This is Orwellian establishment brainwashing and propaganda. We are better than that. 
wsucram15 Added Aug 17, 2018 - 12:39am
I have done a post like this when I was still at the hotel.  I dont think people understand the difference between media and investigative journalism.
Media swings towards an audience that pays both for the paper and also buys the products advertised the way they are advertised. Most people get their news from this point. I dont know why..its not that its inaccurate, its dedicated to its target audience.
 
Fox has a target audience of 1, anything else is a bonus.  MSNBC targets liberals and CNN trys to be in the middle but Don Lemon, bless his heart..really doesnt like Trump. I like the white haired guy, he is spunky. But alas..most media is just repetitive with panels to debate the repetitiveness.
 
Investigative reporters (and only a handful of papers have them) search for the facts.  They have several sources before print, because one source can back out and leave the paper with a large liability.  Now I have a friend that does this and have been out with her, I love to write but she has a finesse with people I guess you need to get a story.  I like people, but you have to nurture a source sometimes. So I occasionally do the research portion.  Sometimes a story is quick and other times its slow cooking.
 
The rest of the news sources including associated press, pull their news from those sources and local news. This is your BEST news source. Local news. I have several local papers I read, not in my state even but the news does not swing one way or the other.
I also read international news on a variety of pages depending on what I am looking for that day.
 
Everyone complains about the news..but you need to know the sources of this first. If you want the truth..you need to seek it and you will find that everyone can see the exact same thing and perceive and write it differently. That is a fact.
The facts you can see are not secondary, they are in black and white.  You just need to find them.
Stone-Eater Added Aug 17, 2018 - 2:19am
Oph
 
Good one, although you know, I don't discuss "truth", I don't use that word. Nobody knows for sure what that it, it's personal, when someone says he knows, he's a an arrogant liar.
 
I see the chair in front of me, I touch it. For me, it's true it is there. And for everybody else too. That's the only truth I accept for me. Everything else is purely subjective and founded on beliefs, culture and Zeitgeist. Seen that way I'm a radical LOL
Stone-Eater Added Aug 17, 2018 - 2:20am
Sorry, typos. Can't find my glasses ;-)
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 3:02am
Jeffry - the worst judges of all are those who think they are good judges.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 3:06am
James - the trouble is that, in the words of Paul Simon, 'A man hears what he want to hear and disregards the rest'.
People choose sites that reflect their views. Those sites tend to exaggerate and reinforce negative views which make people believe in lies and become more extreme.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 3:19am
Jeanne - a great summary. I agree there is a big difference between news and investigative journalism. I think we have more investigative journalism in the UK than in the US but our tabloid press is appalling. The news is so right-wing and sensational.
Because things have schismed with the web the money has also been spread thin and that means less in-depth stuff.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 3:20am
Stone - good point. But some versions of the truth are more extreme and exaggerated than others.
Neil Lock Added Aug 17, 2018 - 4:01am
Opher: I'm just about to leave for the Wieliczka Salt Mine... so apologies if this seems a bit hurried (it is).
 
For me, truth exists. But at any one time, each of us may have a better or a worse appreciation of it. We may be better or worse than others at evaluating "facts" and determining whether or not they are "truths." We may be better or worse at connecting them into a coherent picture.
 
When you talk of "post-truth society," you seem to be rejecting even the possibility of existence of truth. That, I think, is dangerous. If one party refuses to accept the existence of truth, then there is no way in which others can reach any friendly compromise with that party.
 
Also, you seem to think that the "truth" peddled by "experts," "scientists," "the media" and "politicians" is in some sense "real" truth. But we all know that politicians and media lie, confuse and deceive in order to support their particular political narratives. And those of us who look deeply into matters such as green issues find out that many of the "experts" and "scientists" are mis-using science in order to steer their narrative away from truth, not towards it.
 
So overall, Opher, while you have some decent ideas here, I think you are looking at the subject upside-down. For me, it's for the individual to decide which of the purported "truths" he is presented with actually make sense, and which not. To believe what is spouted by the political classes and their media - whether rightist, leftist, "green" or whatever - without first checking it against your own experience and knowledge of reality, is exactly the wrong way to go.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 4:46am
Thanks Neil - enjoy the Salt Mines - What have you done wrong that they've sent you to the Salt Mines?
Yes one does need to weigh the truth presented to one against the experience and knowledge one has. But to many people this merely serves to reinforce a prejudice they already possess.
How does one get around that?
Jeffry Gilbert Added Aug 17, 2018 - 6:20am
some versions of the truth
 
There is the truth and there is a lie. It's a "1" or a  "0".
 
This is an example of the kind of thinking that leads your ilk to mistakenly believe there are more than two genders. 
 
Phil Greenough Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:14am
First and foremost, just because someone claims to be an expert does not mean they speak the truth or are always right.  Second, a member of the media or a politician is no better than you or I at deciphering the truth.  Third, not everything can be bifurcated into truth or lie.
Bill Kamps Added Aug 17, 2018 - 9:10am
Bill - I think there is and always has been a good deal of good accurate reporting - one has to pick one's way through it.
 
True. 
 
I just dont see that because Trump disagrees with the press in a very loud way, that this is limiting the press rights.  The press is used to setting the agenda, and getting the last word.  They cant do that as easily as before and they dont like it.  They call this limiting their rights, but in reality it is just criticism, a good deal of it deserved.  They rights do not include setting the agenda or steering a story to their point of view. 
 
Previous Presidents have not really fought back when the press piled on them, or misstated their positions.  Trump comes back hard, not always accurate but hard.  Trump has a right to say what he wants, accurate or not, because we all have freedom of speech. 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 17, 2018 - 11:30am
Opher
 
"rycK and what is wrong with FDR??"
 
He was a pig much  like Clemet Atlee
 
"The government he led built the post-war consensus, based upon the assumption that full employment would be maintained by Keynesian policies [bad decision] and that a greatly enlarged system of social services [more bad decisions] would be created – aspirations that had been outlined in the 1942 Beveridge Report. Within this context, his government undertook the nationalisation of public utilities and major industries  [more bad decisions], as well as the creation of the National Health Service  [the ultimate in  bad decisions]. Attlee himself had little interest in economic matters  [ignorance fosters bad decisions] but this settlement was broadly accepted by all parties for three decades. Foreign policy was the special domain of Ernest Bevin, but Attlee took special interest in India. He supervised the process by which India was partitioned into India and Pakistan in 1947 [another bad decisions]. He also arranged the independence of Burma (Myanmar), and Ceylon (Sri Lanka). His government ended the British Mandates of Palestine and Jordan. From 1947 onwards, he and Bevin pushed the United States to take a more vigorous role in the emerging Cold War against Soviet Communism [using US dollars of course]. When the budgetary crisis forced Britain out of Greece in 1947, he called on Washington to counter the Communists with the Truman Doctrine.[2] [ [using US dollars of course] He avidly supported the Marshall Plan [using US dollars of course] to rebuild Western Europe with American money. In 1949, he promoted the NATO military alliance against the Soviet bloc [using US dollars of course]. He sent British troops to fight in the Malayan Emergency in 1948 and sent the RAF to participate in the Berlin Airlift. He commissioned an independent nuclear deterrent for the UK. He used 13,000 troops and passed special legislation to promptly end the London dock strike in 1949 [Attacking the workers who would not cooperate with Labour]."
 
FDR
 
"
President Franklin D. Roosevelt: Architect of Monetary Madness and a U.S. Debt Default
Profile picture for user Steve H. Hanke
by Steve H. Hanke
Sat, 07/07/2018 - 12:15"
 
"
FDR entered the White House on March 4, 1933, and in less than two months (April 19, 1933), he announced that he was taking the U.S. off the gold standard. FDR asserted that he was doing this to end the Great Depression and to raise farm prices. As FDR put it: “the whole pr
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 17, 2018 - 11:32am
Opher cont'd 
 
"
FDR entered the White House on March 4, 1933, and in less than two months (April 19, 1933), he announced that he was taking the U.S. off the gold standard. FDR asserted that he was doing this to end the Great Depression and to raise farm prices. As FDR put it: “the whole problem before us is to raise commodity prices.”
 
FDR gave Congress license, and Congress used it to abrogate the Gold Clause via a joint resolution in June of 1933. Before that, a gold clause was included in most private and public bond covenants. These covenants insured that bond holders would receive interest and principle payments in dollars that contained as much gold as the dollar had contained when the bonds were issued.
 
The U.S. government manipulated the price of gold upward until President Roosevelt redefined the dollar in gold terms under the Gold Reserve Act of January 1934. Overnight, the dollar became 41% lighter. This left gold-clause bond holders out to dry."
 
He confiscated gold at $20.67 and raised the price to $35 thus stealing from the citizens 
 "
 
He was a thief and a pig. 
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 12:35pm
Jeffry - I disagree. There might not be anything that can be ascertained as truth.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 12:36pm
Phil - I agree with all three of your points.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 12:42pm
Bill - my biggest concern is that he claims that everything is fake news. He is undermining people's belief in everything. While I agree that there have been some examples of bad reporting, exaggeration and misreporting, in general we are able to work out the truth. This is opening the door to selective beliefs, conspiracy theories and a disbelief in real events - now we are getting more people questioning evolution, the moon landings, 9/11, the holocaust, global warming and even whether the earth is flat. They can select the most absurd stances because 'the experts don't know'. It is daft and dangerous.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 12:45pm
rycK - two of the greatest men rubbished. I suppose that all the hard working Americans had piles of gold lying around?
Autumn Cote Added Aug 17, 2018 - 2:57pm
I will be promoting this article to the email database shortly. The action usually serves to drum-up a lot of additional page views and comment activity.  If anyone wishes to know why this article is being chosen and not their own, I’ll be happy to explain on this thread.
Katharine Otto Added Aug 17, 2018 - 3:47pm
Opher,
It has been a dangerous game for a long time.  True, Trump seems to be upping the ante, but the US has been spinning out of control for most of my life.  It deserves a come-uppance.  If Trump is the catalyst, so be it.  I thought Obama would succeed in bankrupting the country, but it's still hanging on.  
 
rycK,
Thanks for the history lesson.  I might add that FDR required reporters to submit their questions in writing before his press conferences, and he was a master at dissembling.  They allowed presidents to get away with that, then.  
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 17, 2018 - 4:01pm
Opher
 
"rycK - two of the greatest men rubbished. I suppose that all the hard working Americans had piles of gold lying around?"
 
Attlee set up disastrous socialist capital-eating machines and burdened the Brits for many decades as if by metastatic tax disease. He suckered the US to use as much of their monies to further Attlee's confiscation of private wealth in the UK. That was simple theft in any reasonable terms. 
 
And, yes, many people had bonds based on gold and bullion and coins and FDR cheated them out of the metal by confiscating it at $20.67/ Troy oz. and them upping the price to $35 for the government's benefit. That is common robbery. He devalued the bonds as well:
 
"Before that, a gold clause was included in most private and public bond covenants. These covenants insured that bond holders would receive interest and principle payments in dollars that contained as much gold as the dollar had contained when the bonds were issued."
 
This tactic allowed bonds to devalue due to being redeemed in paper. FDR cheated them out of their due. So much for government  covenants such as Social Security and Affordable Health Care. 
 
FDR was a criminal. He also 'probably' goaded the Japanese into war for his personal aggrandizement and that of his relative and half-Brit  Winston Churchill. 
 
Aside
[It is interesting that FDR, Churchill and I share the same grandmother along with Princess Di and Roger Cameron.] A mixed bag for sure. I am probably in (a very long) line for the Throne! Are you? There may be a class barrier here between us. :)
Bill Kamps Added Aug 17, 2018 - 4:20pm
opher, I agree I dont like Trump's style, and much of what he tweets.
 
That doesnt mean he is attacking the freedom of the press.  Something very different.  I hear that Trump is attacking the freedom of the press almost every day, it just isnt true.  The press can still write anything they want, they can counter what Trump is saying, and they are.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 17, 2018 - 4:44pm
Bill Kamps
 
" I hear that Trump is attacking the freedom of the press almost every day, it just isnt true."
 
Agree 100%
 
They attack him and he attacks back and mostly wins the fight. They are in a bitter situation facing oblivion if Trump succeeds with a great economy and controls both sides of Congress and adds 2-5 jurists on SCOTUS.
 
This process has been in force since at least President Jackson. 1A is fine but must be allowed equally on all sides. And, presently, it is.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Aug 17, 2018 - 4:52pm
Katharine Otto
 
"rycK,
Thanks for the history lesson.  I might add that FDR required reporters to submit their questions in writing before his press conferences, and he was a master at dissembling.  They allowed presidents to get away with that, then.  "
 
I can see no reason to tolerate the antics of the rabid press members in the WH when important news is disseminated.
 
Jim Acosta's conduct is disgusting. I would pull his press credentials for months to let him cool off and also not allow questions from him when he returns if ever.
 
I would rather explain policies to Japan or Norway or Uruguay than to the far-left activists from major news agencies. 
Denise Goodman Added Aug 17, 2018 - 5:13pm
Neil: You wrote, "So overall, Opher, while you have some decent ideas here, I think you are looking at the subject upside-down. For me, it's for the individual to decide which of the purported "truths" he is presented with actually make sense, and which not."
 
Sure it is up to individuals to decide what truths make sense.  But most if not all of us don't totally possess the truth without checking out sources.  If Trump denies he said something and someone says he did, the only way I know who is correct is (a) by actually seeing/hearing the tape which proves he said the contested thing of (b) using common sense to figure who more frequently lies. For both we need the news media to fact check.  It's often not just he said-he said but there is evidence of what is true and what isn't.
 
Katherine: You asked by the media is obsessed with Trump.  Because he is President of the United States and his words have consequences, ultimately for our security in the world.  While he acts like a bratty little kid whose treatment can be ignoring, he's in too powerful a position to safely follow suit.
 
 
 
 
 
Dave Dubya Added Aug 17, 2018 - 5:32pm
Big Brother Don:  “Just remember, what you are seeing and what you are reading is not what's happening.” 
==
 Orwell:
The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.
 
The very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world. Lies will pass into history.

In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
 
The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 17, 2018 - 5:32pm
After Roosevelt developed jobs programs unemployment dropped every year of his first term. Employment improved throughout all his terms except for one year. Unemployment went up in 1938 after the Dems caved to GOP pressure.  Roosevelt feared an unbalanced budget and cut spending for 1937. FDR shook off the party that accused him of being an “enemy to his class” and resumed programs and policies that put America back to work.
 
Here are the BLS figures:
 
1930 – 8.9
1931 – 15.9
1932 – 23.6
1932 – 23.6%
1933 – 24.9% FDR inherits peak GOP unemployment rate thanks to tax cuts and deregulation
1934 -  21.7%
1935 – 20.1%
1936 – 17%
1937- 14.3% FDR caves to GOP on taxes and cuts spending
1938- 19%  Americans lose jobs
1939- 17.2% FDR continues programs and taxes
1940- 14.6%
1941- 9.9%
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 6:09pm
Katharine - surely the debt accrued under Obama was due to the global financial collapse?
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 6:12pm
rycK - I am a great supporter of progressive taxation and quality public services. I want a good standard of living and less inequality - more on the lines of the Scandinavian countries. Both of those men worked for that and I support them 100%.
What you have at the moment in the US (and over here) is poor public services, huge inequality (an elite bleeding the country dry) and tax breaks for the rich. It stinks. The quality of life for most people is piss poor because that top 2% take the bulk.
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 6:13pm
Autumn - Thank you!
opher goodwin Added Aug 17, 2018 - 6:15pm
Denise - I agree. I have seen and heard a lot of the lies that have been spoken but it is not always possible to hear what has exactly been said. We get the spin.
If we're fed lies how do we know?
Jeff Michka Added Aug 17, 2018 - 6:59pm
But that evil press, the enemy of the people report Trump's lies, and that's not fair to people like syck ryck, th group that believes anything  and everything the wannabe tyrant says.  Rightist scream about the "Leninist/Marxist/Stalinist left", but they are the True Believers.  IF they hope and pray enough, Trump will intern or kill all immigrants, particularly those not white.  They want "their" country back.  Like it was "their' country to begin with.  Nobody stateside except good white people, afterall. 
Wendy Bugliari Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:09pm
Don't like what Brennan says,
And POOF, take away security clearance which is being claimed
"To stifle first amendment" by many senior intelligence officials/CIA directors https://www.cbsnews.com/news/top-former-intelligence-bosses-speak-out-in-favor-of-brennan/
It's NOT just BAD anymore, it's Unconstitutional and headed for Dictator (now just apprentice PITYOS) ruthless Con man that MUST be stopped.
LOUD America!
wsucram15 Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:14pm
Partially Opher. and partially due to policies by both Bush 44 and Clinton. If it had not been for things they did, the recession which was almost a depression would not have happened.
 
Obama got slammed and he did ok..it will be a while before we see what he accomplished with his economic policies.  Same with Trump. I think some of Trump's short term policies have already taken affect..but the big picture hasnt hit yet. Even the Republicans said this would begin to hit fully in 2019 (tax plan).  So  recovery is going to be slow and Im not sure Trump is doing things right.  So lets see.
Wendy Bugliari Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:16pm



BREAKING: The Senate just unanimously passed a resolution affirming that the Press isn't the 'enemy of the people' The Resolution says that the Senate "views efforts to systematically undermine the credibility of the press as a whole as an attack on our democratic institutions."



 
WHEN exactly was America great?
When it enslaved blacks until 1865?
When it denied women the right to vote till 1920?
When it locked up Japanese Americans in internment camps till 1946? When it segregated blacks till 1964?
When it denied gay and lesbian marriage rights till 2015?
Just a FEW questions proposed by angry Citizens unto which ANGRY
Fox reaction was priceless:
 
We were GREAT when defeating Communist Japan...……….
ahh, fageduhboudit!
 
~The Bug~
Jeffry Gilbert Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:18pm
but the US has been spinning out of control for most of my life.  It deserves a come-uppance.
 
Exactly.
 
Wendy Bugliari Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:29pm
BTW opher,
The Financial Collapse Obama was stuck with started directly with Reagan (trickle down economics) which pissed on US and
allowed failed S&L bailout which triggered Wall Street to follow suit with Housing (the GREAT American dream home owner)
which led to lax law and Bill Clinton Glass/Steagall opened the
gates of hell held at bay by Wall Street regulations which worked since enacted by separating Banks, Brokers, and Insurers from monopoly which resulted in "Too Big To Fail" entities.
I worked for A G Edwards & Sons clearing department for ST. Louis home office age 18, later (more $ less work ha) Bankers Trust as account manager of Municipal Bond Broker Harry Downs & Co., excellent  ethical B2B over 50 years only to be gobbled UP for tax write off. A G E was purchased by Wachovia (long story but idiots as brokers, GREAT banking)
My heart left and so did I in 1989 after sharks were given FREE for all.
My son then 4 was good reason anyway BUT what a fuck UP deregulating WAS for a fair market playing field where everybody specialized in prospective area (granted for a fee between each)
~The Bug~
 
Wendy Bugliari Added Aug 17, 2018 - 7:34pm
The Glass-Steagall Act effectively separated commercial banking from investment banking and created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, among other things. It was one of the most widely debated legislative initiatives before being signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in June 1933.
https://www.federalreservehistory.org/essays/glass_steagall_act
 
In the wake of the 1929 stock market crash and the subsequent Great Depression, Congress was concerned that commercial banking operations and the payments system were incurring losses from volatile equity markets. An important motivation for the act was the desire to restrict the use of bank credit for speculation and to direct bank credit into what Glass and others thought to be more productive uses, such as industry, commerce, and agriculture.
 
The separation of commercial and investment banking was not controversial in 1933. There was a broad belief that separation would lead to a healthier financial system. It became more controversial over the years and in 1999 the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act repealed the provisions of the Banking Act of 1933 that restricted affiliations between banks and securities firms.
 
Just sayin Katherine,
~The Bug~
Jeff Michka Added Aug 17, 2018 - 9:02pm
For syck ryck, it would be okay if Trump became a full-blown (not by his wife) dictator.  syck is okay with a dictator as long as it's "his kind" of dictator.  Most rightists, particularly WB  rightists want a dictator who will jail or kill members of the "leftist press," and inter or imprison migrants and those with brown skin.  Note, the rightists aren't the least upset over migrants in the military getting discharged, so when Orange shit starts the next war, nice white kids can go fight and die in it.  Got a feeling syck is okay with that, too. He has no stake in it save big talk.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:24am
Dave - thank you for your input.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:26am
Jeff - it began on the first day with his lies about the size of the crowd at his inauguration. 
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:30am
Dave - when the truth of the past is denied and rewritten history is altered.  I think it was Jerry Rubin who said 'History will prove us right - we know because we will write that history'. There is truth in that. 
Right now there is an undermining of truth. I was talking to a science teacher last week who said one of her A Level students was actually believing that the earth was flat and there was no evidence that it was a globe.
This has become madness.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:32am
Wendy - when all criticism is stifled you have tyranny. It looks like a battle for the soul of America.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:34am
Jeanne - it was surely the deregulation policies of Bush and the wanton greed of the financial idiots that caused the crash! Obama had to pick up the pieces and did a pretty good job of it.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:41am
Wendy - it is unbelievable that it has come to the point where the senate has to pass a motion saying that the media isn't the enemy of the people. What has it all come to?
People always look back with rose-tinted glasses. The past was shit. All that gross conformity and hypocrisy. Segregation, misogyny and persecution of all minorities with blatant racism, casual sexism and brutal violence against minorities. Then domestic violence, sexual abuse, paedophilia swept under the carpet, alcoholism and religious hypocrisy. Work drudgery. The witch-hunting McCarthy, cold war, illiberal views, banning of books, censorship.
No thanks. I'll take today every time.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:42am
Jeffry - so what is this spinning out of control? Votes for women? Equality of blacks and Hispanics? An end to lynchings? A black president?
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:46am
Wendy - Yes - deregulation is what caused it. It happened here too with Thatcher. Not only the financial stupidities but BSE as well. Deregulation has a short-term boost and is a long-term nightmare. 
Politicians don't give a damn because they are only in office for a short term. The seeds they sow don't explode until further down the line. Exactly what Trump is doing right now - short term gain long-term misery.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:47am
Jeff - it is always OK if the dictator is the brand you are rooting for.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 18, 2018 - 8:34am
Since AutumnCote has so graciously requested additional participation for this discussion, please permit me to start with a basic premise that seems to be sorely lacking here.  Simply this:  If ever one is to have any hope of obtaining the truth, about any matter large or small, one must begin with three beliefs.  First, one must believe that truth exists absolutely.  Second, one must believe that it is obtainable by some reasonable means.  Third, one must believe that obtaining this truth will be in some way beneficial.  Without the first, one is absolutely certain to be unable to seek truth.  One would not be able to recognize it even if it had teeth which it fastened firmly into one's posterior.  There are none so blind as those who are unwilling to see; none so dense as those unwilling to feel the teeth in their collective arses.

Thus, truth can only be discerned with the metaphorical eyes of faith and trust.  Even scientists, whom are commonly misperceived as objective observers, must proceed in faith, trusting that "the truth is out there" waiting to be discovered.  The problem occurs when other kinds of belief or presupposition (or financial incentive) lead one of these to ignore data that is inconveniently contrary to a preferred hypothesis.  Of course, this problem isn't limited to scientists.  It is even more eggregious among those less trained in logic and the pursuit of independently-verifiable objectivity.  For example, news media that actually attempt to verify purported fact often find it difficult and time-consuming to do so.  In a world of competition and deadlines, the amount of time available to pursue verification is limited, often too much so.  Many in the media, especially on the internet, do not even try; they merely pander to the perceived beliefs of their target audience, readership, viewership, et al.

Hence one is confronted with the problem of choosing between conflicting voices, which thus cannot all be presenting truth, and most or all of them may be presenting merely what they wish, for one or another reason, were true.  A few may be presenting some partial truth, but if so they must present also a suitable basis for verifying such a claim if their audience may be expected to do so in order to rely upon it.

What President Trump has done is point out clearly that the media Emperor has no clothes.  It is not solely his own purported nakedness that is on display, but also that of many others.  Those who disbelieve him and what he says must think twice because the ground upon which they stand is equally shaky, uncertain, and unreliable.  To cite a pseudo-Confucian political proverb: "He who sling mud is quickly losing ground".  Everyone must work harder if they are to pursue the truth of any matter and the arguments on all sides of it.  They must analyze the motives that drive each of the many liars who purvey their particular propagandas.  They must project and evaluate accurately what may be the outcome that might follow any given course of action that one or another may recommend; and they must clarify for themselves what it is they personally and collectively value and why they do so.  It is time to stop parroting existing tropes; and time to formulate thoughtful new proposals to replace prior ones that have not been working toward the benefits of liberty or justice for anyone.  It is time to stop condemning one's neighbor, including the one in the White House (or at Mar-a-Lago or Camp David or anywhere else).  That has never been a valid job description for anyone, including media pundits.  There is a lot of doubt to go around, which should be more widely acknowledged; and it is time to be granting to everyone the benefit of that doubt, and the opportunity to shut up and pursue what really *are* their valid occupations -- some of which will include seeking out actual truth to solve problems rather than to bash someone else politically.  It shouldn't then be so difficult to recognize such truth, because it will conform with the other two beliefs I cited in my first paragraph above, being reasonable and beneficial.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 8:58am
PL - Where science has the edge is that scientific discoveries are put out for peer review. They are scrutinised by other scientists who check to ensure the results can be replicated. If they cannot be replicated they are refuted!
This rather undermines the fake news put out by right-wingers that scientists are bought and sold and put out fake results. That is not how science works.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 18, 2018 - 9:24am
Opher -- There is a regrettable tendency for scientists to operate from common pools of funding and common publications controlled by editors with ideological biases, even when the scientists are organizationally separated; hence there is a tendency for them to seek to reinforce one another and form ideological cliques in order to meet publisher expectations.  The maverick scientists who then try to say: "Not so fast! There are some problems with your model or data that you've ignored" tend to be likewise ignored, denigrated and swept out of sight from a publications standpoint.  It is a problem intrinsic to the natural human pack-socialization mentality; and scientists and their establishment suppliers are humans, first and foremost (whatever anybody might say).  It may not be so bad as the "bought and sold" accusation, but neither is the accusation entirely untrue.  It does make for distorted science -- which likely will be overturned given enough time for additional study -- and for a period of time the scientific world then operates on a falsified premise which political forces leverage into bad policies.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 9:39am
PL - while it does take a bit of time for others to replicate the results and either confirm or refute. Science is based on observation and transparency. If it can't be replicated it is not true.
Money does hide things up but not for long.
I find this present denigration of science and scientists an insult to the vast majority.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 18, 2018 - 10:18am
PL,
Those who disbelieve him and what he says must think twice because the ground upon which they stand is equally shaky, uncertain, and unreliable. This is false equivalence. Not trusting a narcissistic pathological liar is not the same as not trusting journalism and science. 
 
There is a regrettable tendency for scientists to operate from common pools of funding and common publications controlled by editors with ideological biases, even when the scientists are organizationally separated; hence there is a tendency for them to seek to reinforce one another and form ideological cliques in order to meet publisher expectations. 
 More false equivalence.
This describes the Koch funded Heartland Institute and other oily climate change deniers far more than it does the global scientific consensus. 
 
Has anyone else noted the tendency of anyone wrapping themselves in "liberty", the flag, and Bible are always shilling for the agenda of the economic elites, aka the servants of mammon?
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 18, 2018 - 11:25am
Dave -- Your accusation of "narcissistic pathological liar" is not founded in any reliable professional psychiatric analysis, and is no more justifiable than accusations against yellow journalists and corrupted scientists.  The equivalence is quite real and true as well as regrettable.  You invoked also the label of "climate change deniers" which is entirely disingenuous because it doesn't actually fit anyone.  No one denies that climate changes.  The only disagreement, which does have a range of associated scientific data over which interpretations are being debated, is about the *causes* of the changes and the degree of influence that human activity can exert.  And that's where a great deal of money and political chicanery has been applied to leverage these arguments in order to pursue financial gain and political power.  It is those who blame human activity, and seek to inhibit the liberties of these deplorable humans, who are the "servants of mammon".
Bill H. Added Aug 18, 2018 - 11:28am
 
Science constantly proves theories and provides facts that are contrary to certain group's beliefs, platforms, or wishes. Several examples are climate change, homosexuality, and the theory of evolution.
Science requires an open mind and the ability to observe many factors that work together for a means or result. Examples would be that dumping chemicals into waterways kills fish and accelerates algae growth, or dumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere causes atmospheric heat retention, increased evaporation, acidic precipitation, glacial depletion, amplification of cyclones and anticyclones, and all of the resultant factors we are witnessing.
Many of the facts that science provides us dictate how we as humans should operate as part of the circle of life. When we ignore these facts and allow greed or stupidity to rule our lives, we no longer deserve our place on the Earth and science shows that many species before us who did not quite mesh with the machine have gone by the wayside.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 11:40am
Dave - it always amazes me how some people latch on to a few dubious sources of denial and take that as gospel while completely trashing the thousands of sources of genuine scientific observation - climate change and the extinction rates are two good examples. The evidence is insurmountable.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 11:44am
PL - I do not fall for this crazy idea that it is anybody's interest to spend millions trying to prove that humans are responsible for climate change. The evidence comes from myriad well respected sources. If it had no foundation it would be easy to refute.
It is also backed up by my own observations. I have travelled the world and seen the impact we are having on ecosystems first-hand. It is immense.
This refuting of science is political - nothing more.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 11:48am
Bill - that is exactly right. Science has made a series of discoveries down the ages that religion and states have not found convenient. They burnt people alive and tortured them for daring to say the earth went round the sun. Presently they are trying to rubbish evolution and human created climate change. It is a sad reflection on human beings and our lack of real intelligence. We are indeed laying the seeds of our own demise and we won't be missed one jot. We've been a disaster for thousands of species.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 18, 2018 - 11:52am
PL,
Your shilling for an obvious and blatant pathological liar is worth a psychological analysis alone. It reveals a Right-wing authoritarian follower personality. 
 
Greenhouse gasses are established science. Humans produce greenhouse gasses at an exponential rate. Global warming is real. And no, not everyone agrees with this. Your propaganda still has millions of dupes, mostly gullible Americans. 
 
Denying this influence is a political, not scientific, tactic. Follow the money. Your oily masters' money is spent on convincing the public that there's a veritable global conspiracy of evil greedy climate scientists. 
 
And your liar says its a "Chinese hoax". But you know best.  
 
My statement stands. You are a shill for the party of elites, waging war against the truth, science, journalism and education.
 
If you demand "liberty" to pollute OUR air and water, I demand the liberty to crap in your kitchen. 
 
Deal? 
 
 
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 12:10pm
PL/Dave - the big interest in all of this climate change denial are the oil and gas companies. That is who is trying to obfuscate the truth. They are greedy selfish bastards who do not care a jot for the outcomes of their pollution.
The Greenhouse effect is well documented. It is measurable and it is having a big effect. Just ask those Indians losing their lives in Kerala at this moment if they think that right-wing Americans are talking sense.
All Trump cares about is making money. He doesn't care how or what the effect it. Deregulation, giving free rein to old polluting gas, coal and oil, fracking and poisoning. He doesn't give a shit.
It's disgusting.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 18, 2018 - 1:31pm
Well, I'm sorry for you, Opher and Dave, because you have chosen your whipping boys, and no data will dissuade you from continuing to beat upon them.  The reality of the effect of greenhouse gasses says nothing about the sources from which they come, of which humans contribute a few percent at most.  Hence, even if humans were to produce none, the effect on climate would be negligible.  That's not propaganda from petrochemical companies, though no doubt they would have an interest in proving the repeatability of such data.  You express an apparent bias against capital growth, which is how money and progress are produced to employ workers and improve technology that facilitates their lives.

Dave, who knows nothing about me, wants to accuse me of being a shill for a president whom he hates irrationally, and for some sort of religious establishment about which he feels similarly.  I can only encourage him to investigate, to learn, and to avoid pat answers and hatreds.  I myself have examined arguments and purported data from multiple angles, and I have drawn my own conclusions, based on my own experience as a systems engineer who is trained to recognize data patterns and the models that produce them, and as a rational adult observer of human failures to be rational over the course of more than half a century.  I heartily encourage the same for others.
opher goodwin Added Aug 18, 2018 - 1:40pm
PL - no I think you are wrong. The human production of CO2 is well understood as is the greenhouse effect it is causing.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 18, 2018 - 3:17pm
 I myself have examined arguments and purported data from multiple angles, and I have drawn my own conclusions, based on my own experience as a systems engineer who is trained to recognize data patterns and the models that produce them, and as a rational adult observer of human failures to be rational over the course of more than half a century. And STILL can't determine Trump is a liar, or global warming denial is corporate PR. And still he shills for both.
 
True to form, I stand accused of "bias against capital growth" without evidence. This false accusation is another tacit of authoritarian discourse.
 
"Authoritarian Tactics and Rules of Discourse":
 http://writerbeat.com/articles/23705-Authoritarian-Tactics-And-Rules-Of-Discourse
 
https://www.climate.gov/news-features/climate-qa/which-emits-more-carbon-dioxide-volcanoes-or-human-activities
 
Human activities—mostly burning of coal and other fossil fuels, but also cement production, deforestation and other landscape changes—emitted roughly 40 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2015. Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, more than 2,000 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide have been added to the atmosphere by human activities according to the target="_blank">Global Carbon Project.
 
Nothing to see here, just a Chinese hoax, amitrite?
Katharine Otto Added Aug 18, 2018 - 4:46pm
Wendy,
Go back a little further to the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, which closely followed the Revenue Act of 1913 which created the income tax and paved the way to fund the wars the US has been in virtually ever since.  The Fed, along with Wall Street, has been engineering boom and bust cycles ever since, including the Depression and the 2008 crisis.  The system came near collapse in 2008 because lenders at all levels were doling out credit to everyone who breathes, but banks, especially, were hot to lend in this upside-down debt-backed Ponzi scheme we call the US dollar.  But oops Susie when the epidemic of individual debt payments suddenly exceeds income.  No individual president was responsible, but every single one helped it along.
opher goodwin Added Aug 19, 2018 - 4:03am
Dave - this tribal division makes people totally blind. They merely select the garbage they want to read that backs up their views.
Truth goes out the window.
opher goodwin Added Aug 19, 2018 - 4:04am
Katharine - wait til the interest rates start going up.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 19, 2018 - 9:24am
OG,
As with the rise of white nationalism in Europe, the far Right/Trumpist tribal beliefs and ideology are held with the same fervor as unquestioned religious fundamentalism. As in, "Jesus sent Trump to save us!" They are indoctrinated the same way, until they become fanatic crusaders for their tribe. (AKA the interests of corporate elites, white identity politics, and suppression of democracy.)
 
They are conditioned to despise and distrust all sources of information that questions their leaders and ideology. Corporate media rarely challenges Wall Street and capitalism in general, but since they call out the lies of the Right, they become the "enemy of the people". 
 
Minorities and the press become the scapegoats of the new fascism.
 
It is very much a cult, and they are programmed to see liberalism and democratic socialism as the equivalent of Stalinism. All while they embrace Putin over the majority of their fellow Americans.
 
Now their ignorance, resentment, fear, anger and hate are fueled to the point of extremism.
 
The white nationalists and Republican Party created this monster, There can be no good consequences of Orwellian rulers, austerity, and permanent conflict. It will be the norm until catastrophic upheaval intervenes.
 
 
Stone-Eater Added Aug 19, 2018 - 9:55am
Dave
 
I don't notice white nationalism here. Mass media might promote it but people with brains don't fall for it.
Stone-Eater Added Aug 19, 2018 - 9:57am
What is growing is the hate towards raping immigrants and drug dealers masked as refugees. But that's not racism IMHO
 
Dave Dubya Added Aug 19, 2018 - 11:45am
the hate towards raping immigrants and drug dealers masked as refugees. This becomes generalized in white nationalism.
 
We seldom see such anger directed at white rapists and drug dealers. The disparity in powder and crack cocaine sentencing reflects this tendency.
opher goodwin Added Aug 19, 2018 - 6:13pm
Dave - I can see that. We do have a similar mindset with Brexit over here. It's rampant Islamophobia and nationalism.
It sure makes it difficult to debate anything when everybody is so entrenched. It is like a religious cult. Faith has replaced rationality. One even sees the evangelicals supporting sexual galivanting and crudity. Amazing.
opher goodwin Added Aug 19, 2018 - 6:14pm
Stone - we've got a big rise in nationalism and racism here since Brexit.
opher goodwin Added Aug 19, 2018 - 6:14pm
Dave - I can see that from the comments left on my threads.
michael d zitterman Added Aug 20, 2018 - 5:54am
Proclaim,
 
Regarding:   First, one must believe that truth exists absolutely. 
Response:  “Absolute truth” of an “event” exists, singularly, and is immutable, i.e., what is, is, although, obviously, there are many perceptions of an “event”.
 
Regarding:  …one must believe that obtaining this truth will be in some way beneficial. 
Response:  If one’s goal is to solve a problem, good (truthful) information must be available.
 
Regarding:   Thus, truth can only be discerned with the metaphorical eyes of faith and trust. 
Response:  The perception of a “truth” may be discerned with “the metaphorical eyes of faith and trust”.  Some truths are not known (let’s not open this “box”).  
 
Regarding:  For example, news media that actually attempt to verify purported fact often find it difficult and time-consuming to do so.  In a world of competition and deadlines, the amount of time available to pursue verification is limited, often too much so.  Many in the media, especially on the internet, do not even try; they merely pander to the perceived beliefs of their target audience, readership, viewership, et al.
Response:  Okay, now you are switching gears.  Is this some type of “practical application” of the search for truth?  Of course, bias and misused or incomplete information are not enablers of locating “truth”.  The media, if speculating, must indicate the information offered is speculative and conjecture.

Regarding:  Hence one is confronted with the problem of choosing between conflicting voices, which thus cannot all be presenting truth, and most or all of them may be presenting merely what they wish, for one or another reason, were true.  A few may be presenting some partial truth, but if so they must present also a suitable basis for verifying such a claim if their audience may be expected to do so in order to rely upon it.
Response:  We all suffer from the greatest human frailty, i.e., we have the tendency to believe that which we want and need to believe.
The news media must be as objective as possible (keep in mind, these writer and editors suffer from the same affliction as I described as our greatest frailty).

Regarding:  Everyone must work harder if they are to pursue the truth of any matter and the arguments on all sides of it. 
Response:  “Argument” is not a good tool to use in the search for truth.  The goal of an argument or debate is to WIN.  One can lose a debate even though he or she offered truth.
We require “discussion” of an event using objectivity (tough) and stipulated truth.  The collective goal should be problem-solving.
 
Regarding:  …which will include seeking out actual truth to solve problems rather than to bash someone else politically.  It shouldn't then be so difficult to recognize such truth.
Response:  Now, you are getting close.
 
mz
mikiesmoky@aol.com
 
michael d zitterman Added Aug 20, 2018 - 6:09am
Dave D,
 
Regarding:  Your shilling for an obvious and blatant pathological liar is worth a psychological analysis alone. It reveals a Right-wing authoritarian follower personality. 
Response:  Do I detect someone who is massively biased and thinks of himself to be somewhat omniscient?
My opinion of Pres. Trump, from afar, is that he appears narcissistic, hyperbolic, and insecure.
His "style" is hyperbole.  I don't like it, but that doesn't make him a bad being.  I have advocated that he substitute us and we for me and I.  He should be understated, i.e., "under promise, over deliver".  He should reflect some humility and apologize for many of this caustic rhetoric.
Those who say, "Let Trump be Trump" are hurting him and the nation.
If he were 7 times as off-putting and I had known that on that fateful November day in 2016, I still would have voted for him; not a close call.
 
Regarding:  Humans produce greenhouse gasses at an exponential rate. 
Response:  Circa 1940, this planet enjoyed the company of 2 billion humans.  By 2020, there will be 8 billion.
A clue?
 
Regarding:  My statement stands. You are a shill for the party of elites, waging war against the truth, science, journalism and education.
Response:  It appears you are not a problem-solver; not even remotely close.
 
mz
mikiesmoky@aol.com
 
 
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 20, 2018 - 6:44am
@michael -- The only disagreement I will offer to your response to any of *my* statements is that the word "argument" as I used it is not always employed to "win".  Sometimes it is used philosophically or mathematically to set out a premise or hypothesis.  As such, it *is* a tool for seeking truth -- or, perhaps more precisely, for testing it.  I would, though, agree that there is a lot of truth that is unknown, and even more that is unsought.  I also appreciate your respect for the fundamental goal of problem-solving.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 20, 2018 - 8:58am
Michael,
Thank you for sharing your perceptions and perspective. It would be helpful if you respond to the perceived errors of my points with facts and evidence. Instead you chose to simply retaliate by accusing me of being "massively biased and thinks of himself to be somewhat omniscient".
 
Interestingly your description for me fits Trump more than me, but dare I suggest this is YOUR bias? Framing outright hate and dishonesty as “hyperbole” might just indicate bias. One needn’t be omniscient to see what is happening, or what kind of personality influences our public policy. You made your own personality assessment of Trump, did you not?
 
My “bias” tells me hate and dishonesty are bad things. Especially in a leader. You seem quite satisfied with the one-party rule under the blatant pathological liar Trump. That might indicate bias too.
 
Thank you for your “clue”, whatever your point may be.
 
“My statement stands. You are a shill for the party of elites, waging war against the truth, science, journalism and education.”
 
All of these ARE targets of the radical Right.
 
This is called “identifying the problem”.  A prerequisite for solving the problem.
 
Dave Dubya Added Aug 20, 2018 - 9:16am
 
“Just remember, what you are seeing and what you are reading is not what's happening.” Big Brother Don.
 
Very Orwellian. 
 
"Truth isn't truth". Rudy the Right-wing Authoritarian 9-11 guy sums up the Orwellian Trump era doublethink more concisely than his client, and even Eric Blair's "Ignorance is strength. Freedom is slavery. War is peace." 
==
 Orwell:
The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.
 
The very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world. Lies will pass into history.

In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
 
 
 
 
 
michael d zitterman Added Aug 20, 2018 - 10:12am
Proclaim,
 
Regarding:   I also appreciate your respect for the fundamental goal of problem-solving.
 
You hit the nail accurately by confirming that "problem-solving" is critical.
 
We will always have problems/pain.
 
Ask your doctor if pain is good or bad.
Half will say "bad" and half will say "good", with most of the "bad", within a few seconds changing to "good".
Pain is a signal that something is wrong and must be addressed.
 
We will always have problems, thus we must be problem-solvers.
 
Thank you,
 
mz
mikiesmoky@aol.com
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
michael d zitterman Added Aug 20, 2018 - 11:15am
Dave D,
 
Regarding:  Instead you chose to simply retaliate by accusing me of being "massively biased and thinks of himself to be somewhat omniscient".
Response:  Whereas I may be wrong, my perception remains as stated.
 
Regarding:  Interestingly your description for me fits Trump more than me, but dare I suggest this is YOUR bias?
Response:  Hmmmm..  You are right or you are wrong; my prognostication is that the greater probability is that you are in error.  My main efforts are directed at objectivity and truth.
Regarding:  Framing outright hate and dishonesty as “hyperbole” might just indicate bias.
Response:  Ah, ha!!!  You “omniscient” characterization is showing, again.  You have determined that he is hateful. Hmmmm....
 
Regarding:  One needn’t be omniscient to see what is happening, or what kind of personality influences our public policy.
Response:  Please review my perception of him.
 
Regarding:  You made your own personality assessment of Trump, did you not?
Response:  Absolutely.  Which descriptors do you disagree?
 
Regarding:  My “bias” tells me hate and dishonesty are bad things. Especially in a leader. You seem quite satisfied with the one-party rule under the blatant pathological liar Trump. That might indicate bias too.
Response:  Wow!! Your description of your bias is silliness, at best.  Ha, ha….hate and dishonesty are bad.  WOW!! Think about it.  I have no intent to pick on you, but that was somewhat infantile.
 
Regarding:  “My statement stands. You are a shill for the party of elites, waging war against the truth, science, journalism and education.”
Response:  You talkin’ to me…, you talkin’ to me? You can’t be talkin’ to me!
Does your comment seem consistent when I suggest that Congress and the Fed are criminal activities?
  
Regarding:  This is called “identifying the problem”.  A prerequisite for solving the problem.
Response:  Are you a comic?
 
Thank you,
 
mz
mikiesmoky@aol.com
 
 
Dave Dubya Added Aug 20, 2018 - 11:22am
Whereas I may be wrong As sure as Trump is a liar.
 
greater probability is that you are in error... You have determined that he is hateful. Hmmmm.... Your description of your bias is silliness, at best.... somewhat infantile.
 
Yet more amazing fact-free "insight".
 
 Are you a comic? Am I funny? Like a clown?
opher goodwin Added Aug 23, 2018 - 4:33am
Dave/Michael that is very difficult to follow.
David Montaigne Added Aug 23, 2018 - 8:21am
Technology has made it easier to spread lies, but truth has always been hard to ascertain.  We need an honest and unbiased Ministry of Truth - but we won't find it at CNN or Facebook or Twitter or the New York Times.  We can only attempt to find it through tons of research, and that will be very difficult.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 23, 2018 - 12:05pm
If you want an honest and unbiased Ministry of Truth, I don't think you'll find that any government on earth could staff and manage such an organization, nor operate it in a manner that actually obtains and guards truth.  George Orwell used the term to mean a ministry of propaganda, and that is the nature of governments or any actual power locus because its purpose is to defend its own existence.  Some private researchers, like "Snopes", attempt to debunk at least *some* myths.  If there were some competition between several such organizations, with some potential financial reward for the best-justified research in any given category or issue, maybe they could function in society as purveyors of truth.
opher goodwin Added Aug 23, 2018 - 1:18pm
David - an unbiased, transparent media is about the best you can get.
opher goodwin Added Aug 23, 2018 - 1:20pm
Liberty - all the competition is the world won't lead to greater truth. What you need is a competitive unbiased media which is transparent and open to being challenged.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 23, 2018 - 3:33pm
Opher -- The competition I suggested was to be impelled by the hope of financial gain that could defray its cost of operation, and each contestant would be challenged by the others to demonstrate their quality of truthful information supply.  News media once were close to fitting such a description, but they seem to have succumbed to monopolistic agglomeration and no longer operate in a free competitive market whose customers could thereby demand higher product quality by patronizing only the best suppliers who could demonstrate that quality.  Now they seem to cater to niche markets which do not hold them accountable -- hence the increasing accusations of "fake news", false innuendo, and outright lies, merely to foster political goals.
opher goodwin Added Aug 24, 2018 - 7:34am
Liberty - they certainly do pander to a market and supply the bias that niche group desire. They are selling a product. They make it attractive to the group they are servicing.
These media outlets are owned by very wealthy people. No wonder their bias is right-wing and supportive of the establishment.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 24, 2018 - 7:56am
I am not familiar with the news outlets to whom you refer, Opher.  The bias of most of the media with which I am familiar is quite leftist and contrary to "the establishment", unless that establishment is also leftist.  Socialism and leftism in general have been rampant during the past half century, with very few willing to counter them.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 24, 2018 - 9:15am
Socialism and leftism in general have been rampant during the past half century, with very few willing to counter them.
 
Yet the rich are getting richer than ever. Corporations are raking in record profits. They have most of the political power and influence. Income inequality is rising to Gilded age levels. 
 
So what's the problem? Too many foodstamps? Too much unemployment compensation? Too much public healthcare? Not enough low paying service jobs? Is the air and water too clean?
 
Oh, the humanity!
 
Something is clearly intolerable to the Right.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 24, 2018 - 9:20am
Private schools are draining public education funding. Private prisons are a new big business, and and privatized military is considered for Afghanistan.
 
That's some socialism ya got there.
opher goodwin Added Aug 24, 2018 - 9:36am
Liberty - I haven't seen anything remotely socialist in America. Are we using the same terms?
opher goodwin Added Aug 24, 2018 - 9:38am
Dave - does the USA use the same definition of socialism as the rest of the world? All I see in America is gross inequality created by rampant capitalism. The rich are becoming grotesquely rich by exploiting the poor.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 24, 2018 - 9:59am
Sorry, Dubya, but until public funds are permitted to be contributed in some measure to private schools, which used to be legally prohibited, no public funds are being drained from any public education budgets.  Perhaps the situation has improved since my day, to allow taxpayer money to be applied to a school of the taxpayer's choice, at least for their own children via a voucher program that funds the child rather than the school.  If that is the case, I applaud it, because competition among suppliers of education cannot help but improve its quality.  Nonetheless, that is a far cry from "draining public education funding".  The private sector is always more efficient than the public one, because it is continually fighting for its very survival by demonstrating that it supplies a superior product, to both its direct clients and its indirect ones in the general public sphere who benefit from well-educated citizens, well-guarded and rehabilitated prisoners, and even specialized military organizations who represent their governmental clients.  These few examples, however, merely underscore some of the shortcomings that governments have suffered under the general dumbing-down that socialism engenders.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 24, 2018 - 10:35am
OG,
The American Right sees no difference between democratic socialism and Stalinism. They are indoctrinated to think the private profit motive is best for all outcomes, ie. "superior product".
 
competition among suppliers of education cannot help but improve its quality. This is dogma. 
 
 
There is no evidence supporting "superior product" from private prisons or schools or mercenaries in war. Just "superior profit", in a profit uber alles system of our marketed and commoditized humanity.
 
The middle class grew union rights to collective bargaining and  from socialized GI bill and public education, not from the trickle down miracle of capitalism.
 
This reality is what the Right hates and tries to smother with their dogma.
 
Notice PR had nothing to refute my case of trickle up capitalist wealth and dominance in our political system and economy. 
 
If pure profit motive makes everything better, how's that McCrappy fast food quality thing workin out fer ya? Good food? No. Good pay? No. Good benefits? NO. Free market crap sells, but it ain't necessarily better, is it?
 
 
Dave Dubya Added Aug 24, 2018 - 10:39am
Here's a sample of that miraculous "superior product" from the private profiteers of health care.
 
https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/investigations/2017/08/13/medicaid-patient-lost-care-hed-received-20-years-3-months-later-he-dead/488367001/
 
A Medicaid patient lost the care he'd received for 20 years. 3 months later, he was dead.
 
ORANGE CITY, Ia. — Thirty-two years ago, a vehicle accident left Todd Mouw a quadriplegic, unable to feed himself and needing a ventilator to breathe.
 
Yet for decades he was able to live at home with the help of family, aided by medical staff who visited him daily to help provide 24-hour care.
 
That care abruptly ended when a for-profit company that Iowa hired last year to manage the state's Medicaid program announced that some of the staffers who had attended to Mouw all those years weren't qualified, and it wouldn't pay for the cost.
 
As he and his wife Cyndi futilely searched for qualified help, Todd's health dissipated. He had to leave his home for care, and on July 8 he died at age 53
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 24, 2018 - 10:41am
You asked about problems, Dubya. I have a few responses.  For example, yes, there are too many foodstamps to people who defraud the system to the tune of multiple billions of taxpayer dollars -- with no end in sight that would aid the people who receive them, due to underemployment or unemployment, to become self-sufficient positive contributors to society and the taxpayer base.  There is too much unemployment compensation due to there being too much unemployment.  How does one address a lack of employment?  Only through innovation that generates new businesses, new industries, new facilities, and new jobs.  New training may thus be required also, which is yet another business opportunity.
 
When you ask about too much public healthcare, the answer is yes again because government deals in generalities and massive issues, whereas people are individuals with individual healthcare needs that require individual private choices.  Medical care is an industry that government is incapable of running efficiently, if at all.  Government involvement can only become intrusive and even oppressive against individual privacy, and suppressive of personal responsibility.  It increases costs and diminishes services.  It has already destroyed a number of medical service suppliers in the USA.
 
Low-paying service jobs are found just as much in government offices as in the private sector.  And whatever makes you think that clean air and water are partisan issues or the province of rampant socialism?  On the other hand, oppressive regulations can stifle the economy and the very businesses that are needed to provide funds and expertise for cleanup efforts.  You don't seem to understand that it is weath that enables all of these problems to be addressed.  In order for wealth to be produced, those who produce it must become wealthy.  Only thus will that wealth be applied in ways that enable others to contribute their own efforts and share in the wealth.  Stealing wealth by governmental confiscation via excessive taxation only drains away any store of existing wealth and inhibits any further production of it.  It kills the goose that lays the golden eggs.  A wise government feeds the goose and is careful to limit the number of eggs it takes in return.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 24, 2018 - 10:46am
Incidentally, Dubya, the improvement to educational quality in the private sector and from the competitiveness of choice where parents are enabled to choose the best quality is not dogma, but demonstrated fact.
Proclaim Liberty Added Aug 24, 2018 - 10:49am
Further, Dubya, medical care in the US at present is in a horrible transitional phase, neither private nor public, and struggling for survival all 'round.
Dave Dubya Added Aug 24, 2018 - 11:27am
PL,
 
A wise government feeds the goose and is careful to limit the number of eggs it takes in return. Yet as noted the rich are doing better than ever. Taxes are cut. Services to the poor are cut. 
 
So much for government of by and for the people. Only the rich matter. In policy, power and privilege.
 
Fraud exists throughout business, law enforcement, the military and government. We can fight it, but we don't dismantle the institutions. They are not the problem. Fraud is. 
 
ALL food stamps, no matter how they are issued, put needed food on the table and go into businesses and support the local economy. 
 
When you ask about too much public healthcare, the answer is yes 
So you want to deny healthcare for those in need. "Let 'em die". We got it.
 
 Medical care is an industry that government is incapable of running efficiently, if at all.  Government involvement can only become intrusive and even oppressive against individual privacy, and suppressive of personal responsibility.  It increases costs and diminishes services. More Dogma. All demonstrably false. 
 
Junking the whole system is your answer?
 
How does one address a lack of employment?  Only through innovation that generates new businesses, new industries, new facilities, and new jobs. Nothing wrong with that... when it happens.  Problems arise when monopolized entrenched business crushes innovative advances in alternative energy, small businesses, and other less established newcomers. 
 
One example is cannabis. The fanatic authoritarian drug warriors and alcohol, tobacco and pharmaceutical companies have long suppressed this valuable and beneficial resource. We could have a spectacular hemp industry contributing medicine and fiber to our economy and tax base. 
 
What is always ignored by the Right? Failed capitalism. The Great Depression and the Bush Great Recession show capitalism failed spectacularly when de-regulated. The rich recover, the rest lose. 
 
And public education is most definitely undermined by corporate indoctrination schools. Like corporate prisons, it's all a scam for taking our tax dollars away from public services and padding the wallets of the rich. 
 
From the Southern Education Foundation:
 
Public resources have historically been diverted to private schools in myriad ways. From tax exemptions to grants, legislators have found creative ways to funnel taxpayer dollars into private schools. Over the last few years, the nation has seen the rise of vouchers and tax credits, and most recently, education savings accounts. These policies have primarily afflicted the South, though that has slowly been changing. New York State in 2015, for example, was considering a proposal to enact tax credit scholarships. 

Vouchers
Vouchers allow families to spend taxpayer dollars at schools of their choice, including private schools. They allocate to families the money the district would have spent educating their child in the form of a voucher, which can be used to pay for private school tuition and fees.
 
Tax Credit Scholarships
Tax credit scholarships grant tax credits, the equivalent of cash, to corporations and individuals who donate to organizations that provide private school scholarships. The amount depends on the specific policy, but in some instances (e.g., Florida, Alabama, Arizona) donors receive 100% of the money they donated (with limits) back in the form of tax credits.
 
Education Savings Accounts
Education Savings accounts are similar to vouchers, in that they enable parents to access the money that would have been spent on their child were they in a public school. If a parent does not enroll their child in the public school system, taxpayer dollars are deposited in a government-authorized account, which the family can access for specific uses including private school tuition.
 
Dave Dubya Added Aug 24, 2018 - 11:39am
And whatever makes you think that clean air and water are partisan issues or the province of rampant socialism?  
 
Gee, I can't imagine. "Trump digs coal". Scott Pruitt opens the polluters spillways. Environmental regulations are cut. Global warming and greenhouse gas effect is denied.
 
 oppressive regulations can stifle the economy and the very businesses that are needed to provide funds and expertise for cleanup efforts.  You don't seem to understand that it is wealth that enables all of these problems to be addressed.
 
More unquestioned gospel of the elites and far Right. You don't understand the problems created by polluters who need to be ordered and fined to clean up their poison in OUR air and water.
 
Yet the rich are getting richer than ever. Corporations are raking in record profits. They have most of the political power and influence. Income inequality is rising to Gilded age levels. 
 
So where's that great capitalist paradise of prosperity and equality under law?
 
It FAILS the people. 
 
Your dogma fails to see capitalism as a double edged sword. It needs regulation and balance from a socialized public interest. AKA government. 
 
You want owners. We want democracy. 
opher goodwin Added Sep 9, 2018 - 3:16pm
I want capitalism controlled, fraud stopped, corruption stopped, taxes paid and brilliant public services.
That means no completely unbridled capitalism with its selfishness and greed and an end to this gross inequality. 
Simple.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Sep 10, 2018 - 1:22pm
  Opher
 
"[1] I want capitalism controlled, fraud stopped, corruption stopped, taxes paid and brilliant public services.
 
[2] That means no completely unbridled capitalism with its selfishness and greed and an end to this gross inequality. 
Simple."
 
Okay. How you stop fraud and corruption in ANY government??
 
Do you make a distinction between capitalist fraud or corruption in a modern  capitalist society such as the US and the same forms of fraud or corruption in socialist governments?
 
In non-capitalist governments [NOKO and Cuba] people are summarily shot, provided with minimal rations and such and how would  you stop or minimize these crimes, if they are deemed as such?
 
What I see in most rants about capitalism is that the criticisms in parallel  socialist or authoritarian governments are not discussed or omitted in part. 
 
What would you do about Venezuela, if anything? Do you support Maduro and his system or is he free from fraud and corruption and how would you  put end to this gross inequality?