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What does the word 'progressive' mean? Line up to tell me, take a ticket!

 
 
maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 05:35 pm
@Thomas,
Robert wrote:
This term did not exist back then with the meaning it does now.


Thomas, there are 13 words in this sentence. I think you only read the first 7 words.

Incidentally the word "liberal" also did not exist with the meaning it has now.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 06:00 pm
@Thomas,


Present day (this is a more accurate term than "modern") progressives have evolved significantly and would not think so (mainly owing to learning from the mistakes of proponents of eugenics over the last 100 years). That was my point, what was seen as forward thinking 100 years ago does not need to be seen as forward thinking now for the term forward thinking to have utility. It must take into consideration context and many "progressive" people of the past would strike us as troglodytes today but may have been progressive for their era.

But fair enough I was wrong to not pick up on which specific progressive movement you are talking about, to use the hypothetical that the progressive movement of that era was about to adopt eugenics my answer would be that yes, they were progressive for the time. They believed (incorrectly) that eugenics would advance society. Modern day progressives do not believe this and this is not some inconsistency that invalidates the term, it is a natural evolution of political positions more so than even word meanings.

Quote:
If 1900 is non-modern to you, then "progressive" is not a modern political term. It's a term with a history. But if your point is that the history is irrelevant because people reinvent the meaning of the term ad lib, I suppose that's my point in different words. I rest my case.


That's just a very silly case then (that the word has no meaning because people give it different meanings), there is not a single word in human history that has not suffered from people reinventing the meaning to some degree and is no basis upon which to decide that one particular word is irrelevant.

There has not ever been a central authority for the English language in its history (and even then, in other languages where there have been people used language as they liked and they didn't get to do anything about it), all its words have been open to people reinventing the meaning of the term "ad lib". Bad came to mean good, sick became to mean very good, it just happens. Even if it's not "literal" enough for your arbitrarily selected definition that you claim is the one true definition of the word.

You just cannot claim any authority about what words mean, linguists describe the current state of what people use the word to mean. When lexicographers write dictionaries they don't tell people what they think the word should mean they describe what they see people using the word to mean. Words have no inherent meaning except what people give them. It's all arbitrary, "duck" could just have well have meant "horse" and "horse" meant "duck" if it played out that way. Nothing inherent about the way these letters are ordered dictates what animal they are, this is just meaning lent to these patterns by humans and humans can and will change the meanings even if that does not sit well with you.

The bottom line is that progressive does mean (for the majority of the population) something that you claim it does not, and in this case I am reminded of the old lady exclaiming "look at my young boy! everyone in the parade is marching out of step except my fine young man!"

Language is what it evolves to be, and in this case "progressive" has taken on a useful and clear meaning whether or not you like how "literal" it is according to what you think those letters arranged that way should mean.
Robert Gentel
 
  3  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 06:13 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Clue used to mean ball of yarn.
Awful used to be a good thing.
Egregious too used to mean good, not bad.
Myriad used to specifically mean 10,000.
Bully used to mean wonderful.
Hussy used to mean housewife.
Matrix used to be the womb.
Defecate used to mean purify.
Artificial used to mean artful.
Girl once meant a child (even a boy).
Meat used to mean any non-liquid food.
Naughty used to mean poor.
Pretty used to mean crafty.
Faggot used to mean a bundle of sticks, then it meant a bad woman and then became a slur for homosexuals.

It would be silly to refuse to use these words, or to tell a homosexual that when he is called a "faggot" it is "irrelevant" because the word is not literal enough and he's really not a bundle of sticks after all. But doing so is to ignore that the purpose of language is to communicate with others and not eternal consistency in definitions.
0 Replies
 
RABEL222
 
  4  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 06:29 pm
@Lash,
The fact that he is blowing hot air. As I keep pointing out and you keep ignoring Bernie isent going to get **** done with a republican congress but blow more hot air and give the republican candidates their best chance of electing their candidate with a socialist communist attack from the time he gets the nomination. And even better if the republicans win a republican Supreme Court. If you think things are bad now wait till we have a total republican government. But I have always believed that has been your objective from the start.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 06:46 pm
@RABEL222,
I agree that little will change but don't ascribe it to the 1% having dictated this. It owes to the nature of the plurality voting systems that Duverger's political science law predicts will lead to two-party rule and in two-party rule the parties move toward the center and away from extremes thusly closely resembling each other.

There are plenty of reasons to resent the 1% influence on politics but the lack of change does not really have anything to do with them and has everything to do with the political system we have that favors stability over change due to the two-party system.
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 06:49 pm
@RABEL222,
Bernie is delineating his method to clean up our national shithouse. It's complicated. He's telling us how it can be done. He's also telling us it will be an uphill fight, and that he'll have to have our continued engagement to keep Congress on their toes.

If you vehemently disagree with a sacrifice Dem loss to wrestle the party from the DINOs, say why. Yell at me about that, but calling me a liar is a cheap dodge, IMO.

Foofie
 
  0  
Reply Thu 17 Dec, 2015 07:55 pm
@Thomas,
Thomas wrote:

Robert Gentel wrote:
Are the reforms toward a conservative political position or toward a progressive political position?

Let's say the year is 1900, and the Progressive movement is about to go all-in on eugenics. And because is 1900, eugenics is indeed "progressive" to those who approve of it because it's future-oriented rather than history-oriented. But you oppose eugenics. So you say to your them: "Don't fall for eugenics, it's _____ !"

What adjective do you use to fill in the blank? Obviously you wouldn't use "progressive" because you oppose the sterilization of handicapped people. You also wouldn't use "conservative" because a policy of sterilizing handicapped people hasn't been pursued before. So what's a similarly-generic adjective that expresses your opinion of the policy?


Just an intrusive comment. I'd say the word to use is "seductive."
0 Replies
 
Olivier5
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 01:32 am
@RABEL222,
RABEL222 wrote:

I might point out Oliver that just as in Israel it was the Europeans who stole the Indians land and killed them off so they could steal it.

Of course. I'm not trying to bash Americans; the same would apply to many other European colonies, and indeed Israel is another case...


I am just saying that colinisation by Europeans and people of European descent was once viewed as "progressive". Indigenous people represented the past and we were the future.

Note the ethnicity of Colombia in the painting. She is obviously white. More than white: She is BLOND.

I'm falling on Thomas' side of this debate, as much as it costs me to say.
0 Replies
 
Olivier5
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 04:08 am
@Robert Gentel,
Robert Gentel wrote:

I agree that little will change but don't ascribe it to the 1% having dictated this. It owes to the nature of the plurality voting systems that Duverger's political science law predicts will lead to two-party rule and in two-party rule the parties move toward the center and away from extremes thusly closely resembling each other.

There are plenty of reasons to resent the 1% influence on politics but the lack of change does not really have anything to do with them and has everything to do with the political system we have that favors stability over change due to the two-party system.

Both the manipulation of democracy by the dominant class and the first-past-the-post voting system play a role, me think. The same incapacity to deal with deep-rooted problems is apparent in democracies with a two-round voting system, even though such a system allows for better expression of political diversity than the first-past-the-post system.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  2  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 06:22 am
@RABEL222,
RABEL222 wrote:

Progressive, liberal, conservative, are just words to fool the voters into believing that they have a choice between two candidates who have already been chosen by the one percent who have already purchased the loyality of the candidates with their billions. I will vote as I have always voted knowing it wont change a damn thing. The very rich have always controlled government and always will. The same rich families are still controlling government. Yes I know that 1% of the 1%changes over 30 or 40 years which means that 99% of the 1% still control government.


Some of what you say here MAY be true...but it does not bother me as much as it does others here.

I used to belong to a social club who sponsored two yearly golf outings. One guy, Harry, used to do ALL the leg work to organize it. He set up the times at a course of his choosing; got all the members who wanted to play together; collected the money; bought the prizes; set up the prize schedule; set up the parameters of the contest...got the place for the banquet; set up the menu.

Every year there were people who moaned and groaned about where the outing was held; the format of the competition; the kinds of prizes; the food choices and the like.

Screw them. They selected Harry to do the job (none of them wanted to do it...LOTS of work involved)...but they wanted to moan and groan.

Doing the job of government is NOT easy work...and the salaries some of these people make are not anywhere near what they should be.

So...they tap the till a bit.

The do what almost every person alive does...take care of number one and family first...and then see to the needs and wants of the others.

COMPARED with some of the governments that have managed societies in this world...we have a FINE government. An EXCELLENT government...an efficient government....run by relatively competent, honest people.

And one of the things they do very right...is to insure that the moaners and groaners here get to do their moaning and groaning as loud and as often as they want.


Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 06:25 am
@Lash,
Lash wrote:

That's the first thing you ever said that I happily thumbed up. So, my question: If you actually have a chance to stick it to the assholes running the country, what would keep you from doing it?

Smile


Lash, you would be one of the people giving Harry the most crap...and you would undoubtedly be one of the people orchestrating the moaning and groaning.

The only thing impressive about that is that it shows you know how to moan and groan...

...which is not all that impressive at all.
0 Replies
 
Olivier5
 
  2  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 08:43 am
Speaking about "future values", here is how the founders of futurism saw the way forward in 1909. Note article 9. Mussolini was still socialist back then. The futurists influenced him. He would size power in 1922.

Quote:
MANIFESTO OF FUTURISM

1. We want to sing the love of danger, the habit of energy and rashness.
2. The essential elements of our poetry will be courage, audacity and revolt.
3. Literature has up to now magnified pensive immobility, ecstasy and slumber. We want to exalt movements of aggression, feverish sleeplessness, the double march, the perilous leap, the slap and the blow with the fist.
4. We declare that the splendor of the world has been enriched by a new beauty: the beauty of speed. A racing automobile with its bonnet adorned with great tubes like serpents with explosive breath ... a roaring motor car which seems to run on machine-gun fire, is more beautiful than the Victory of Samothrace.
5. We want to sing the man at the wheel, the ideal axis of which crosses the earth, itself hurled along its orbit.
6. The poet must spend himself with warmth, glamour and prodigality to increase the enthusiastic fervor of the primordial elements.
7. Beauty exists only in struggle. There is no masterpiece that has not an aggressive character. Poetry must be a violent assault on the forces of the unknown, to force them to bow before man.
8. We are on the extreme promontory of the centuries! What is the use of looking behind at the moment when we must open the mysterious shutters of the impossible? Time and Space died yesterday. We are already living in the absolute, since we have already created eternal, omnipresent speed.
9. We want to glorify war — the only cure for the world — militarism, patriotism, the destructive gesture of the anarchists, the beautiful ideas which kill, and contempt for woman.
10. We want to demolish museums and libraries, fight morality, feminism and all opportunist and utilitarian cowardice.
11. We will sing of the great crowds agitated by work, pleasure and revolt; the multi-colored and polyphonic surf of revolutions in modern capitals: the nocturnal vibration of the arsenals and the workshops beneath their violent electric moons: the gluttonous railway stations devouring smoking serpents; factories suspended from the clouds by the thread of their smoke; bridges with the leap of gymnasts flung across the diabolic cutlery of sunny rivers: adventurous steamers sniffing the horizon; great-breasted locomotives, puffing on the rails like enormous steel horses with long tubes for bridle, and the gliding flight of aeroplanes whose propeller sounds like the flapping of a flag and the applause of enthusiastic crowds.

It is in Italy that we are issuing this manifesto of ruinous and incendiary violence, by which we today are founding Futurism, because we want to deliver Italy from its gangrene of professors, archaeologists, tourist guides and antiquaries.


http://bactra.org/T4PM/futurist-manifesto.html


http://images.tate.org.uk/sites/default/files/images/node/233434.jpg
Luigi Russolo - The Revolt (1911)
0 Replies
 
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 10:56 pm
@Lash,
I already have told you why. But as usual you ignore my statements and implore me to prove to you whatever. It is an impossible task. You hate the Clintons and nothing I say will move you from that stance so I will not waste my time. If you really are voting in the dem primary just vote for Sanders. He is a much better man that his so called admirers. But he will not win the presidency Clinton can, and I for one am not willing to take a chance on a republican Supreme Court for the next 20 years. We've already lost too much of our freedom to the 1%.
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 11:02 pm
@RABEL222,
Rabel, I think you might have misread my post.

I'm not asking you for proof of anything. I'm just telling you that I'd rather talk about ideas than argue with you. That's all.
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 11:09 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Frank, this might surprise you but I have been the mayor of the little town in which I live and am today a board member so I know all about the citizens bitching about the job being done by government. I also know that government even a little town is mostly run by money people. I was never impressed by them but many on the board were. I found a good way to take care of the bitchers, I just invited them to run for office so they could make the changes they wanted in our government. They werent interested in the extra work involved and would usually disappear. It was ok for me to put in 30 hrs of work a week for $600 a year in a town of 400 but not them. But it did give me some realief from the bitchers.
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2015 11:12 pm
@Lash,
Quote:
say why


This is what I read. If I misunderstood Im sorry.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2015 07:03 am
@RABEL222,
RABEL222 wrote:

Frank, this might surprise you but I have been the mayor of the little town in which I live and am today a board member so I know all about the citizens bitching about the job being done by government. I also know that government even a little town is mostly run by money people. I was never impressed by them but many on the board were. I found a good way to take care of the bitchers, I just invited them to run for office so they could make the changes they wanted in our government. They werent interested in the extra work involved and would usually disappear. It was ok for me to put in 30 hrs of work a week for $600 a year in a town of 400 but not them. But it did give me some realief from the bitchers.



I understand completely. Glad you are up to the work...and able to take the scorn of the few...in order to do a job that has to be done.

Too bad some who are the beneficiaries of your work cannot grow up...and simply say, "Thank you"...rather than moan and groan.
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2015 05:30 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Not all Frank, the usual minority. Just the other day I had one of my citizens tell me "for a dumb wop you dident do as bad as I thought you would". My heart just melted!
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Dec, 2015 06:27 am
@RABEL222,
RABEL222 wrote:

Not all Frank, the usual minority. Just the other day I had one of my citizens tell me "for a dumb wop you dident do as bad as I thought you would". My heart just melted!


Great one!!! Wink
georgeob1
 
  2  
Reply Sun 20 Dec, 2015 06:13 pm
@Frank Apisa,
San Francisco has long been a fairly ethnic town, long dominated by its Chinese, Italian, Irish and Jewish populations, though much of that is fading now. There's even a club of sorts where these folks meet, usually in the Italian Athletic Club on Washington Square. I get a lot of jokes from my Italian pals about visiting the local Irish Cultural Center (spoken with a roll of the eyes).

Once soon after I first arrived out here a few decades ago, I was a guest at another local men's club that meets weekly for lunch at a restaurant on Fisherman's Wharf. The club was and still is dominated by local judges, Labor Union Bosses, trial lawyers, restauranteurs and a few sports figures, the majority of whom are Italian (with a few Irish Chinese, Jews and the odd Armenian and Black for contrast).The atmosphere is garrolous and irrevrent.

I was new in the town and still trying to take it all in. The guest speaker that day at the lunch was a former Chief of Police in San Francisco, a distant cousin of mine, very Irish and with a still identifiable Brogue as he addressed the garrolous and rowdy group. He thanked his host and made a few remarks about the good old days in the City when those good Irish cops with their big hands delivered swift justice in the alleys, noting that the streets were much safer then. A chorus of the expected cat calls followed, mostly from the Italians, and a Judge (Moscone as I recall) barked out "We've outgrown that stuff now and have real justice without you Micks."

My cousin appeared to expect it and in the same lighthearted way spoke as follows, his Brogue becoming a bit thicker,
"Ah Moscone, I knew your Da, a good man. Like most of you eyetalians he was in the construction business. I was walking a beat then in North Beach and came on one of his projects - you had to keep an eye on them eyetalians so I looked around a bit. While I was doin it someone knocked a big building stone that landed on me foot. It hurt like hell and there was some blood commin out the side of the leather. They took me up to the first aid station and cut the leather away ... it was a terrible sight, a bloody mess .......,,, The dago behind me fainted."
 

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