1
   

Is American Excess Now Realizing Its Limits?

 
 
Reply Mon 6 Jul, 2009 01:14 am
I'm wondering what does it mean to "sell out"?

To 'sell out' could mean to demean or diminish some good quality in the pursuit of short term interest. To exchange a human or social 'good' for short term gratification.

Like going on a diet. We don't eat those delicious fatty foods because we want to be healthy over the long term. So to go ahead and to eat those fatty foods right now would be a form of selling out our health in order to obtain immediate gratification.

The real human and social goods require long patience hard work, and sacrifice. But schools and universities seem to focus more on pop culture and also the politicization of the curriculum. Most of the overly specialized graduates are taught to hate the virtues or at least they are ignorant of the long hard patience that goes into being a good person, and having a good society, really requires. I have met many specialists who just desire to make money. And who can blame them in this social climate?

I am routinely insulted by the amount of advertising that is promoted in our society. I am also greatly insulted by the tone and message of these blaring, disgusting ads. There are lawyers who are chasing ambulances. These lawyers are, by the account they give in their own advertising, disgusting money-grubbing low life's chasing after the cheap buck. This does not promote a respect for the law. Yet it is a non-stop orgy of solicitation of the lowest order: and nobody says anything. (By the way, I see their commercials on a regular basis where they are ripping off Medicare and Medicaid in broad daylight.)

In fact, the bulk of the television stations carry so many commercials when they show something that they are unwatchable. The penis enlargement commercials run all night long ripping off the stupid men who fall for the promise of a larger genitalia. Genitalia cannot in fact be enlarged by medication or by creams. And even Bob Dole, the former 'conservative' candidate for president has endorsed Viagra (Viagra does actually work at least, but is this the kind of medicine we really need right now?)

But people have been cheating others out of money by using sex since the beginning of time. In the short term we can all get high and have sex but are we trading something that could be truly excellent for short term pleasure?

The pharmaceutical industry is out of control in America. The amount of people using prescription drugs in America is astronomical. They are literally bankrupting the entire health care system and not one person ever says that maybe we should not take so many drugs. I see no end to this trend outside of absolute bankruptcy.

The pornography industry has completely morphed and been absorbed into the whole society at large. I am not a prude but I think the emphasis upon short term gratification has a downside. But I don't believe it can be denied that America has become a pornographic society. I actually think that a lot of people are proud of this fact. The American people have become an immoral people.


The emphasis upon the lowest common denominator has dumbed down the people at large so that nobody knows the difference between right and wrong outside of the force that it applied to wrong doers. To most people the very idea that there could be a 'right' and a 'wrong' is not acceptable. Again: there is no real reason to do the right thing outside of the fact that force will be applied against one.

They keep on building more and more Casino's in America. The state governments never ever cut the size of their budgets. They would rather have slaves to the slot machines than cut the intrusive size of government. But with the advent of the lottery the state become the legal bookie a long time ago, it's just that now they are totally out of control. Gambling in my opinion reinforces the idea that short term gain is better than long term sacrifice. The state governments, by endorsing and profitting from this behaviour, are absolutely immoral entities.

Wall Street has become a cesspool. They are committing securities fraud in broad daylight. They are taking, sometimes in secret, billions and billions of taxpayers dollars and giving their staffs billion dollar (that's right, billion!) bonuses. The entire housing bubble was nothing but a ponzi scheme orchestrated by the federal reserve, which lowered interest rates to near zero in order to produce asset inflation. The bankers on Wall Street in turn sold million dollar houses to jobless immigrants and speculators in order to secure their fat bonuses. And they got away with it scott free. They made their short term gains at the expense of the taxpayer and the nation at large.


And of course, obsesity in America is out of control. The American people are the most obese people in the entire history of the human race. What I am suggesting is that there is a link between the obesity and the other short term thinking that I've mentioned. This is a large scale cultural disease that we're dealing with.

America is also in debt. We owe more than any other nation. And they have outsouced everything they could. They are bleeding the country dry.

Money is or has become more important than human life. Especially the human life that is worth living. The Federal Reserve, by printing so much money. is currently risking hyperinflation. Hyperinflation is as bad as a nuclear explosion. It is a devastating phenomenon. We are in a very bad position right now.

In my opinion the solution lies in the moral and the political spheres. Considering the current state of both of these,(morality is out the window and the politicians are blindly corrupt) then, there really is no viable solution. The limit has been realized.
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urangutan
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Jul, 2009 02:15 am
@Pythagorean,
Drop in the fact, that the only world wide acceptable (legal) narcotic, is Tobacco. No other nation can legally profit world wide from its chem of dependance.

By the way I am a lazy so and so who won't quit, smoking that is.
0 Replies
 
richrf
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Jul, 2009 09:30 am
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean;75252 wrote:
In my opinion the solution lies in the moral and the political spheres. Considering the current state of both of these,(morality is out the window and the politicians are blindly corrupt) then, there really is no viable solution. The limit has been realized.


Hi,

It appears that this kind of group behavior is rather cyclical in human history, and in fact excess may in fact just be a way for each generation of humans to learn a bit of humility. Who knows? But I think it will happen again. Maybe in 80 years or so.

Rich
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Jul, 2009 09:55 am
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean;75252 wrote:
I'm wondering what does it mean to "sell out"?

To 'sell out' could mean to demean or diminish some good quality in the pursuit of short term interest. To exchange a human or social 'good' for short term gratification.

Like going on a diet. We don't eat those delicious fatty foods because we want to be healthy over the long term. So to go ahead and to eat those fatty foods right now would be a form of selling out our health in order to obtain immediate gratification.

The real human and social goods require long patience hard work, and sacrifice. But schools and universities seem to focus more on pop culture and also the politicization of the curriculum. Most of the overly specialized graduates are taught to hate the virtues or at least they are ignorant of the long hard patience that goes into being a good person, and having a good society, really requires. I have met many specialists who just desire to make money. And who can blame them in this social climate?

I am routinely insulted by the amount of advertising that is promoted in our society. I am also greatly insulted by the tone and message of these blaring, disgusting ads. There are lawyers who are chasing ambulances. These lawyers are, by the account they give in their own advertising, disgusting money-grubbing low life's chasing after the cheap buck. This does not promote a respect for the law. Yet it is a non-stop orgy of solicitation of the lowest order: and nobody says anything. (By the way, I see their commercials on a regular basis where they are ripping off Medicare and Medicaid in broad daylight.)

In fact, the bulk of the television stations carry so many commercials when they show something that they are unwatchable. The penis enlargement commercials run all night long ripping off the stupid men who fall for the promise of a larger genitalia. Genitalia cannot in fact be enlarged by medication or by creams. And even Bob Dole, the former 'conservative' candidate for president has endorsed Viagra (Viagra does actually work at least, but is this the kind of medicine we really need right now?)

But people have been cheating others out of money by using sex since the beginning of time. In the short term we can all get high and have sex but are we trading something that could be truly excellent for short term pleasure?

The pharmaceutical industry is out of control in America. The amount of people using prescription drugs in America is astronomical. They are literally bankrupting the entire health care system and not one person ever says that maybe we should not take so many drugs. I see no end to this trend outside of absolute bankruptcy.

The pornography industry has completely morphed and been absorbed into the whole society at large. I am not a prude but I think the emphasis upon short term gratification has a downside. But I don't believe it can be denied that America has become a pornographic society. I actually think that a lot of people are proud of this fact. The American people have become an immoral people.


The emphasis upon the lowest common denominator has dumbed down the people at large so that nobody knows the difference between right and wrong outside of the force that it applied to wrong doers. To most people the very idea that there could be a 'right' and a 'wrong' is not acceptable. Again: there is no real reason to do the right thing outside of the fact that force will be applied against one.

They keep on building more and more Casino's in America. The state governments never ever cut the size of their budgets. They would rather have slaves to the slot machines than cut the intrusive size of government. But with the advent of the lottery the state become the legal bookie a long time ago, it's just that now they are totally out of control. Gambling in my opinion reinforces the idea that short term gain is better than long term sacrifice. The state governments, by endorsing and profitting from this behaviour, are absolutely immoral entities.

Wall Street has become a cesspool. They are committing securities fraud in broad daylight. They are taking, sometimes in secret, billions and billions of taxpayers dollars and giving their staffs billion dollar (that's right, billion!) bonuses. The entire housing bubble was nothing but a ponzi scheme orchestrated by the federal reserve, which lowered interest rates to near zero in order to produce asset inflation. The bankers on Wall Street in turn sold million dollar houses to jobless immigrants and speculators in order to secure their fat bonuses. And they got away with it scott free. They made their short term gains at the expense of the taxpayer and the nation at large.


And of course, obsesity in America is out of control. The American people are the most obese people in the entire history of the human race. What I am suggesting is that there is a link between the obesity and the other short term thinking that I've mentioned. This is a large scale cultural disease that we're dealing with.

America is also in debt. We owe more than any other nation. And they have outsouced everything they could. They are bleeding the country dry.

Money is or has become more important than human life. Especially the human life that is worth living. The Federal Reserve, by printing so much money. is currently risking hyperinflation. Hyperinflation is as bad as a nuclear explosion. It is a devastating phenomenon. We are in a very bad position right now.

In my opinion the solution lies in the moral and the political spheres. Considering the current state of both of these,(morality is out the window and the politicians are blindly corrupt) then, there really is no viable solution. The limit has been realized.


Thank you, Jeremiah. REPENT!
Pythagorean
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jul, 2009 10:19 am
@kennethamy,
Upon further reflection, I have now realized that like drug addicts most Americans are actually suicidal. There seems to exist a kind of self-awareness among American people that their behaviour and the general path that the society is traveling down will lead to the destruction of the country as we now know it.

I repeat: the American people are self-consciouisly hurling to their own destruction. This is the height of immorality and irrationalism.

As I said previously the greatest threat we face is hyperinflation. For anyone who wishes to learn more about this threat I will post a explanatory video below.

This three part video on hyperinflation is brief enough and very well produced. It is easy to watch and highly informative.

Part 1:

YouTube - Hyperinflation Nation Part 1/3


Part 2:

YouTube - Hyperinflation Nation Part 2/3

Part 3:

YouTube - Hyperinflation Nation Part 3/3


My advice for people who want to be prepared is to grow a vegetable garden, secure firearms and invest in gold.
Didymos Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jul, 2009 11:57 am
@Pythagorean,
Most of these problems being the result of our corporate system. We invented a legal person who is obligated, under the law, to do nothing but make as much money as possible. That is the height of immorality.
Pythagorean
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jul, 2009 03:08 pm
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas;75667 wrote:
Most of these problems being the result of our corporate system. We invented a legal person who is obligated, under the law, to do nothing but make as much money as possible. That is the height of immorality.



Who is this "legal person"?

As I attempted to demonstrate in my original post, the scope of the problem encompasses the entire American citizenry.

As I was saying, the politicization of the issue is an integral part of the problem. The continuing ideological politicization of human thought, ideas, University curiculuum, and life in general is part of the problem. The human rights cry for equality of outcomes leads to greater government intrusion into the civic sphere crowding out the real human goods, the goods of excellence that only come from long hard labour within authentic and reasonable communities. The continuing politicization of society is destroying social capital. This is a wide spread moral and political crisis.

This is a bad time for the further enhancement of government powers. This will lead -- is leading -- to a high tech police state where no one is responsible for themselves. With the enormous gaps between the Super Rich and the average American (wages for the middle class have been stagnant for a long time) we are heading toward the third world model of society already. To continue to play politics with the issue is an immoral act because it effectively blocks other constructive alternatives.
Didymos Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jul, 2009 03:27 pm
@Pythagorean,
The legal person is the corporation. Due to a series of Supreme Court decisions around the turn of the century, corporations were granted legal personhood, with the unique status of being obligated, by law, to be concerned only with turning a great a profit as possible.

This is not a political matter, but a judicial matter. Concern over corporate personhood is an issue that radical leftists and radical conservatives have all brought forth.

In effect, granting corporations legal personhood is intrusion of the government into what it means to be a person.

We must also remember that in order to fix a political problem, we must act politically. In this instance, it would seem to me that we as voters should focus more attention on what Presidential candidates look for when they appoint Judges, and we should also reevaluate the system by which in some states, like West Virginia, Judges actually campaign for their office.

I know that in the past our political disagreements have come to the fore front, but on the issues you have wisely mentioned, I think we have a great deal of ground for agreement. Especially concerning wealth disparity, which is largely the result of government subsidizing big business and structuring the tax codes in ways that favor the wealthy by providing loopholes for the wealthy to avoid paying the full share of their taxes according to tax brackets.

This issue also creeps into other problems, like the food we eat. The government offers huge subsidies for corn, which goes almost exclusively to a few massive commercial agricultural businesses like Monsanto, instead of family farmers who are a quickly dying breed of American. Because corn is so cheap due to the subsidies, it is cheaper to feed cattle corn, which is a food that cattle should not consume. The result is sick livestock - that steak you and I eat came from an unhealthy animal.

We are talking about problems so massive and complex that politicians refuse to address them - for, among other reasons, that they do not understand the full complexity of these issues. And neither do I, for that matter. I'm not sure anyone fully comprehends the depth of our collective milieu, which is only that much more terrifying.
Elmud
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jul, 2009 07:57 pm
@Pythagorean,
There is good news and bad news. Good news, beans and tators ain't that bad. Bad news, beans and tators ain't that cheap anymore..
0 Replies
 
Pythagorean
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Jul, 2009 01:33 am
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas;75730 wrote:
The legal person is the corporation. Due to a series of Supreme Court decisions around the turn of the century, corporations were granted legal personhood, with the unique status of being obligated, by law, to be concerned only with turning a great a profit as possible.

This is not a political matter, but a judicial matter. Concern over corporate personhood is an issue that radical leftists and radical conservatives have all brought forth.

In effect, granting corporations legal personhood is intrusion of the government into what it means to be a person.


Thomas, I'm not familiar with this issue. It is my hunch that you are focusing upon corporate and business greed and I grant you that the business community is as part of the problem as is every other community. But just reforming the business community does not address the true problem, in my opinion. As a matter of fact I don't believe that the business community could ever really be reformed without properly addressing the problem.

I call what you wrote an undue politicization of the issue because you are bringing to the table what I consider to be a narrow focus upon businesses and corporations.

The current economic crisis is a symptom, not a business problem, and cannot be solved by a simple reform of the business community. The basic scheme of taxation in any democratic society is not merely a procedural matter, in my opinion, but rather it is reflective of a moral consensus. What I mean is that, without the proper morality (essentially, in the absence of good people) then any attempt to provide a fix to the problem will only rearrange and shift the problem around. All short term solutions will fail.

Quote:
We must also remember that in order to fix a political problem, we must act politically. In this instance, it would seem to me that we as voters should focus more attention on what Presidential candidates look for when they appoint Judges, and we should also reevaluate the system by which in some states, like West Virginia, Judges actually campaign for their office.

What is the connection between Judges and the true nature of the predicament?

Quote:
I know that in the past our political disagreements have come to the fore front, but on the issues you have wisely mentioned, I think we have a great deal of ground for agreement. Especially concerning wealth disparity, which is largely the result of government subsidizing big business and structuring the tax codes in ways that favor the wealthy by providing loopholes for the wealthy to avoid paying the full share of their taxes according to tax brackets.


I do appreciate your interest and all the credit to you for recognizing the severity of the matter. That's more than I can say of most politicians both conservative and liberal alike.

But I have to say by focusing upon business and corporatations I believe you are missing the essence of the problem. The greatest challenge that we face is in identifying the true nature of these problems. I believe they are moral and political too and that all parties are to blame which means the solution necessarily involves great and difficult changes throughout the entire socicety.

The United States is quicly transforming itself into a third world type of nation. The two-tier economy is an unmistakable sign of this trend. Raising taxes upon the very rich may well be part of a sound solution. However, if the real issues go unaddressed, then even heavy taxation of the super-rich will not solve these problems.

Quote:
We are talking about problems so massive and complex that politicians refuse to address them - for, among other reasons, that they do not understand the full complexity of these issues. And neither do I, for that matter. I'm not sure anyone fully comprehends the depth of our collective milieu, which is only that much more terrifying.


Our society is replete with specialists and this fact tends to obscure the overall picture. But they are all human beings and they are all mortal, and in the end and all motivated in similar ways. More technical analysis is not necessary, nor would it solve anything in my opinion.
DasTrnegras
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Jul, 2009 09:17 pm
@Pythagorean,
I would have to agree that Corporations and Laissez-Faire economics plays the largest role in the destruction of American ideals than anything else. Pythagorean, you were asking whether american "Selling Out" has reached it's limit, and that the short term gains of years past are now yielding to largely negative repercussions.

I would suggest that Corporations led the charge in "Selling Out" american prosperity for short term wealth. The influence of Friedmanist economics is unmistakable on the Educational system, the housing market, tax codes, and government intervention.

Educationally, around the Mid-80's, The education system was revamped to play a vital role in children's development. Unfortunately, this Role almost exclusively focused on Future employment in Corporate Jobs, something that not only killed Children's love of learning, but also destroyed the Citizen's image and replaced it with the image of a consumer.

Corporations also led the charge to de-regulate financial markets, and put immense pressure on the fed to keep interest rates low.

Now, I'm not saying that only corporations should be blamed. I don't think Didymos Thomas is either. But If you're asking about definitions of "selling out", I think we can all agree that A corporation is the very epitome of just that. I can think of nothing else, in fact, that so lives up to the very essence of "Selling Out", than the vast majority of Multinationals that comprise american makeup so definitively.
Theaetetus
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Jul, 2009 09:28 pm
@DasTrnegras,
DasTränegras;76215 wrote:
I would have to agree that Corporations and Laissez-Faire economics plays the largest role in the destruction of American ideals than anything else. Pythagorean, you were asking whether american "Selling Out" has reached it's limit, and that the short term gains of years past are now yielding to largely negative repercussions.

I would suggest that Corporations led the charge in "Selling Out" american prosperity for short term wealth. The influence of Friedmanist economics is unmistakable on the Educational system, the housing market, tax codes, and government intervention.

Educationally, around the Mid-80's, The education system was revamped to play a vital role in children's development. Unfortunately, this Role almost exclusively focused on Future employment in Corporate Jobs, something that not only killed Children's love of learning, but also destroyed the Citizen's image and replaced it with the image of a consumer.

Corporations also led the charge to de-regulate financial markets, and put immense pressure on the fed to keep interest rates low.

Now, I'm not saying that only corporations should be blamed. I don't think Didymos Thomas is either. But If you're asking about definitions of "selling out", I think we can all agree that A corporation is the very epitome of just that. I can think of nothing else, in fact, that so lives up to the very essence of "Selling Out", than the vast majority of Multinationals that comprise american makeup so definitively.


Well, I think too many people have this ideal kind of belief about how the United States was formed. Sure, Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine spoke out against wealth concentration, but if you seriously look at how the country was founded, you will see the precursors to the modern corporations with their hands in the formation of the country. This whole financial fiasco that we are facing now was started back during the Revolutionary War, and the subsequent founding of the country.

But I think that American Excess is now realizing its limits because the rest of the world is starting to pressure the U.S. and there is also a growing number of the have nots that are starting to realize why they are in the situation that they are in. I love this discussion. Carry on!
Elmud
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Jul, 2009 10:45 pm
@Theaetetus,
I find it fairly interesting while reading threads such as this one, that no one mentions the fact that American presidents receive a wage for the rest of their lives. I'm kind of wondering what the labor factor is in the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government. American excess. The United States invented it.
Theaetetus
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Jul, 2009 10:49 pm
@Elmud,
Elmud;76228 wrote:
I find it fairly interesting while reading threads such as this one, that no one mentions the fact that American presidents receive a wage for the rest of their lives. I'm kind of wondering what the labor factor is in the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government. American excess. The United States invented it.


I wouldn't say that the United States invented it, but rather perfected it. If you want to understand how that process went about, I highly recommend reading The People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn. He covers the history of the U.S. through the perspective of the people that were repressed by the government since the days of Columbus. It is a fascinating read, rather enjoyable for history, but I warn you, it will anger you as you read about the history of the people that history ignores.
0 Replies
 
Pythagorean
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Jul, 2009 05:57 am
@DasTrnegras,
DasTränegras;76215 wrote:
I would have to agree that Corporations and Laissez-Faire economics plays the largest role in the destruction of American ideals than anything else. Pythagorean, you were asking whether american "Selling Out" has reached it's limit, and that the short term gains of years past are now yielding to largely negative repercussions.

I would suggest that Corporations led the charge in "Selling Out" american prosperity for short term wealth. The influence of Friedmanist economics is unmistakable on the Educational system, the housing market, tax codes, and government intervention.

Educationally, around the Mid-80's, The education system was revamped to play a vital role in children's development. Unfortunately, this Role almost exclusively focused on Future employment in Corporate Jobs, something that not only killed Children's love of learning, but also destroyed the Citizen's image and replaced it with the image of a consumer.

Corporations also led the charge to de-regulate financial markets, and put immense pressure on the fed to keep interest rates low.

Now, I'm not saying that only corporations should be blamed. I don't think Didymos Thomas is either. But If you're asking about definitions of "selling out", I think we can all agree that A corporation is the very epitome of just that. I can think of nothing else, in fact, that so lives up to the very essence of "Selling Out", than the vast majority of Multinationals that comprise american makeup so definitively.


I agree that children today are not taught or brought up as authentic members of an authentic nation. They are like artificial citizens or 'consumers' as you say. But I believe the cause of this lies in the fact that during the '60's movement the people threw off the yoke of authentic society and introduced new, 'free' ways of living. Dangerous 'free' ways, in my opinion.

The older, authentic yoke of society, entails a too heavy burden for modern people to bear. The new easier life styles that people choose from today are not conducive to long term survival of the nation. This nation is falling and falling fast and the way out is too difficult for people to bear: they will not change back into the authentic modes of living that are necessary in order for us to continue with these debt induced high standards of living that we've all grown used to. We are too spoiled to change. You must keep in mind that consumerism is a much easier life-style than the older, strict and 'uptight' civilization that it grew out of.

And I agree that the introduction of "Freidmanite" economics has proved absolutely disastrous. But how can you seperate the corporate culture from the culture at large? I think the fundamental problem is a human predicament and not an economic problem. We need to do that difficult thing which we cannot do, which is to reform ourselves as people. This current economic disaster is a philosophical problem as much as it is an economic one. With this current crisis we are facing the greatest philosophical challenge possible!

How can we truly reform the economic system without a simultaneous reform of the people themselves? Economic reality is grounded in human behaviour, and economics is a subset of politics rightly understood. "Selling out" is never an economic or money-related act, it is always an immoral act. If we are to reform Wall Street doesn't it have to be precisely upon moral and human grounds?

--
0 Replies
 
Solace
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Jul, 2009 04:58 pm
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean;75654 wrote:
My advice for people who want to be prepared is to grow a vegetable garden, secure firearms and invest in gold.


I don't mean to poke this thread in the eye or anything, Pythagorean, but when I see things like the videos you posted I can't help but wonder if there's a political agenda involved. I don't mean to suggest that you have one, but that perhaps the people in the videos, such as Ron Paul, a politician, might. I mean, those videos seemed like little more than fear mongering, with the end result screaming "Buy gold now!" Then I go to facebook and see an ad on the side saying "Wall Street suggests investing in gold." Perhaps the science and economics of it is correct, but the presentation seems a little like the very advertising that the OP chastised.
Didymos Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Jul, 2009 05:08 pm
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
Thomas, I'm not familiar with this issue.


You should look into it. This is an issue that should have conservatives up in arms.

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
It is my hunch that you are focusing upon corporate and business greed and I grant you that the business community is as part of the problem as is every other community. But just reforming the business community does not address the true problem, in my opinion. As a matter of fact I don't believe that the business community could ever really be reformed without properly addressing the problem.


I agree that business reform is only one aspect, and that greater underlying social problems must also be addressed. Absolutely.

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
I call what you wrote an undue politicization of the issue because you are bringing to the table what I consider to be a narrow focus upon businesses and corporations.


I brought up one aspect of what I call a problem so large that no one probably understands the full extent, and somehow I'm being too narrow in my focus? Sheesh!

Political issues are inherently political. You cannot unduly politicize a political issue. The current corporate model is a political/judicial matter.

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
The current economic crisis is a symptom, not a business problem, and cannot be solved by a simple reform of the business community.


Economic problems are solved without addressing economics? That's odd, don't you think?

I agree that there is more to consider, but to say that economic crisis is not a business problem is false, and I think you know that. We both recognize that the problem is certainly deeper than the business world, but certainly we must admit that the business world is not immune to that deeper ill, right?

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
The basic scheme of taxation in any democratic society is not merely a procedural matter, in my opinion, but rather it is reflective of a moral consensus. What I mean is that, without the proper morality (essentially, in the absence of good people) then any attempt to provide a fix to the problem will only rearrange and shift the problem around. All short term solutions will fail.


I agree. But that morality touches all aspects of the society, for example the business world, and influences their evolution. These moral problems result in the current system - we should not be so naive as to think that when we fix the moral issues that the system produced by immorality will not need repair.

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
What is the connection between Judges and the true nature of the predicament?


They interpret the law, and also happen to be moral agents.

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
I do appreciate your interest and all the credit to you for recognizing the severity of the matter. That's more than I can say of most politicians both conservative and liberal alike.

But I have to say by focusing upon business and corporatations I believe you are missing the essence of the problem. The greatest challenge that we face is in identifying the true nature of these problems. I believe they are moral and political too and that all parties are to blame which means the solution necessarily involves great and difficult changes throughout the entire socicety.


I agree that there is a larger problem: but I do not ignore that larger problem by discussing an example of how that larger problem has caused harm, do I?

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
The United States is quicly transforming itself into a third world type of nation. The two-tier economy is an unmistakable sign of this trend. Raising taxes upon the very rich may well be part of a sound solution. However, if the real issues go unaddressed, then even heavy taxation of the super-rich will not solve these problems.


I'm not even talking about tax increases - I'm talking about eliminating the ways in which the wealthy avoid paying taxes.

Pythagorean;76031 wrote:
Our society is replete with specialists and this fact tends to obscure the overall picture. But they are all human beings and they are all mortal, and in the end and all motivated in similar ways. More technical analysis is not necessary, nor would it solve anything in my opinion.


We need moral specialists.

---------- Post added 07-10-2009 at 05:15 PM ----------

Theaetetus;76218 wrote:
Well, I think too many people have this ideal kind of belief about how the United States was formed. Sure, Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine spoke out against wealth concentration, but if you seriously look at how the country was founded, you will see the precursors to the modern corporations with their hands in the formation of the country. This whole financial fiasco that we are facing now was started back during the Revolutionary War, and the subsequent founding of the country.


Not from my understanding of the history.

Corporations, at the time of our nation's founding and until... the 1870's, I think (It's been a while)... were organized for a specific purpose, given government approval for undertaking that specific purpose, and subsequently disbanded after completing that purpose. It took a series of rather strange court decisions to expand and alter the corporation into the modern model.

Jefferson's economic ideals, while odd and often outlandish, were the antithesis of the modern corporation. He envisioned a nation of self sufficient land owners, not dependent corporate bees.

Our financial fiasco has it's roots in our handling of the industrial revolution.

Theaetetus;76218 wrote:
But I think that American Excess is now realizing its limits because the rest of the world is starting to pressure the U.S. and there is also a growing number of the have nots that are starting to realize why they are in the situation that they are in. I love this discussion. Carry on!


It really is a great topic.

Something to remember, though, is that the US is not alone in our display of excess and hedonism, even if we are the leader of the pack.
0 Replies
 
Pythagorean
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Jul, 2009 06:26 pm
@Solace,
Solace;76448 wrote:
I don't mean to poke this thread in the eye or anything, Pythagorean, but when I see things like the videos you posted I can't help but wonder if there's a political agenda involved. I don't mean to suggest that you have one, but that perhaps the people in the videos, such as Ron Paul, a politician, might. I mean, those videos seemed like little more than fear mongering, with the end result screaming "Buy gold now!" Then I go to facebook and see an ad on the side saying "Wall Street suggests investing in gold." Perhaps the science and economics of it is correct, but the presentation seems a little like the very advertising that the OP chastised.


You are making an excellent point. Reality itself is now politicized and the people in the videos are in fact closely related to the libertarian and conservative side of the political spectrum. My personal advice is: Don't trust people who are in the political arena. You must arrive at your positions through independent analysis.

Having said that, the measures that I advise people to take such as, plant your own vegetable garden, secure firearms and purchase gold - these measures do not inherently support any real political agenda (unless of course you have it in your mind that all of reality is subject to ideology already - in which case there is not hope at all). These are common sense measures intended to insure survival in the case of hyperinflation.

Whether or not the U.S. is in danger of hyperinflation is something that one can research independently on one's own. In any event, buying gold and preparing for an emergency is not a political act in and of itself. These are purely defensive measures in case of emergency. These are common sense measures and it is a sad commentary on the state of our society that being prepared for an emergency is now being politisized.

You remind me that the politisization of reality that we are experiencing in our culture is a death sentence for the country. One can no longer even think about important, common sense matters without politics coming into it.

All I can say to you Solace, is that if someone warns you of a possible danger you are ultimately responsible for your own well being. If you don't heed a warning you are the one who may ultimately suffer. And no sane or rational person can deny that our economy is currently engulfed in a real crisis.

--
Solace
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Jul, 2009 11:43 pm
@Pythagorean,
Well, there could be a political agenda that has nothing to do with preparing people to deal with economic disaster; this current crisis and the possibility of hyperinflation could be hyped up by the companies who mine and sell gold, for instance, who want to scare people into investing in what they're selling. As you say, we need to analyze it independently. Certainly planting a vegetable garden is a sensible idea for anyone who can plant one. But one could run the gambit when it comes to how sound an investment buying gold is and take the whole scenario to the extreme. What if even gold loses its value? If there turns out to be a complete global meltdown of stockmarkets, if the banking industry goes completely belly up and our free market system entirely disappears, will I be able to get any value back for those pretty bricks I purchased? After all, I can't eat gold.

I guess my point is that it's hard to tell if this is a legit warning from concerned parties, or just unscrupulous people trying to take advantage of others' fears during a financial crisis in order to line their own pockets. Fear profiteering is a popular vice in the post 9-11 North America. And when I consider what I saw in those videos, how the narrator villified the players on one side, and then called the ones on his side of the issue "good men", it just smacks of political and/or profit advertising.
Pythagorean
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Sep, 2009 09:18 pm
@Solace,
I would like to add an observation regarding lawyers in America.

I see their ads on T.V. and everywhere in the media, all over.

They state that if anyone who has been hurt in any kind of accident should call 800-LAWYers and such.
They say that if you have been hurt on the job or anywhere that they will sue for you. And of course the lawyers are taking the bulk of the awards they get from the courts.

They also seek out bad products and produce class action suits. This type of ambulance chasing for decades in America was considered immoral and illegal.

It is astonishing to me that these crooks can get away with this stuff. The lawyers are members of the bar and certain standards should be applied but are no longer.

This is a moral outrage. I can't believe the level of corruption here.

But of course what is the most important part in this is that the people allow this to happen and nobody even says anything. You would think that some philosophically oriented person would be eager to point out those things in a society that is collapsing in front of our eyes. But no. Not a peep out of anybody.

I can only guess that everybody is getting their "kicks" before the entire house burns down. What I mean is that they are accomplices in all this corruption. As if civil society ever came easily.
 

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