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rhett o rick

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Member since: Fri Apr 22, 2005, 01:05 PM
Number of posts: 35,269

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And that's your justification for what exactly? When David takes on Goliath some people

immediately side with David and some immediately side with Goliath, revealing to me authoritarian issues on both sides. That may include me (not in this particular case) because I do have authoritarian issues. I tend to mistrust authoritarians unless proven otherwise. And I believe those that side with Goliath also have issues with authoritarians. They tend to trust authoritarians until proven otherwise. And in the case of priests, continue to trust authoritarians even after proven otherwise.

But because a few (several?) posters on a message board of thousands declared Snowden a hero shouldnt be used to rationalize that he isnt. But once again, and again, whether Snowden is a hero or not is beside the point. The important point is that we, as a society may have a trust problem with our elected and appointed people that are supposed to be working in our best interest. It is every bit our responsibility to assure that they are working in our best interest.

Most here recognize that the investigative report on Christie is most likely tainted. The same reasoning should lead us to be suspicious of investigative reports issued by the NSA about the NSA. And we should be suspicious of attempts by the NSA to smear anyone that dares to speak out in this democratic society.

If you want democracy you must demand it and be vigilant, and be very weary of those that ask you to blindly trust them.

I think to characterize capitalism as evil reveals part of our economic problem.

Capitalism is an economic system and itself isnt evil any more than a knife is evil. I know this sounds like I am being picky but believing that capitalism is evil goes along with the idea that capitalism is like a person and it isnt. Capitalism should be viewed as a tool which can be used for good or bad just like a knife.

Humans cannot live in society without rules. There is a natural tendency to look out for one's self. But to live in an orderly society, humans must some times sacrifice what's best for themselves to make the society function for the best of the society.

Also, it must be clear that when we say capitalism needs to be regulated, we mean "for the benefit of society as a whole" and not for a select few. Our capitalistic based system currently has lots of regulations, but they have been modified to benefit a very small, select few.

The SCOTUS did our society a great disservice in the Citizens United decision where they ruled that our Constitution restricted us as a society on how much we can regulate our capitalist system. They demonstrated their enormous power to overrule the Congress and the President. IMO this is out of hand. The SCOTUS has too much power (but that's a discussion for another day).

The argument that the capitalist (oligarchs) cant be regulated by society because it's not "democratic" is bogus. Our democracy isnt inherently laissez-faire. We as a society can and must control our democracy and economic system to benefit society as a whole and strip the oligarchs of their power.

Capitalism isnt evil, we must take responsibility to control it, by whatever means necessary.

Other than that, have a great day.

What's your position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)?

The TPP of course is a trade agreement that is being negotiated in secrecy from the American public.

Corporations are being allowed to either participate or at least see the text.

Some of the text has been leaked and has union leaders and environmentalists worried.

Previous trade agreements, like NAFTA, have been devastating to the American workforce.

The Administration is trying to push this agreement thru Congress via "fast-track" which will not allow debate or public input.

How do you feel about the Trans-Pacific Partnership?

Why do some citizens have such hatred for whistle-blowers?

I think you will find that these are the same people that not only openly hate whistle-blowers also hate protestors like Code Pink and Occupy. They are quick to throw investigative journalists like Michael Hastings under the bus. They side with the corporations against WikiLeaks, Julius Assange and Pfc Manning.

So who are these people? Well we know that the Republicans fall into this category. They clearly have no empathy for the poor, seniors, the sick, our vets, working people, etc. They openly worship authoritarian leadership with leaders like Bush, Cheney, and Gen Clapper.

But Republicans aren’t the only ones that fall for the propaganda put forth by the corporate media and espouse hatred toward those trying to speak truth to power. It appears that some conservative Democrats are siding with the Republicans and the corporate media to try to silence whistle-blowers.

So apparently it’s not just a Republican thing to hate those speaking truth to power, but a conservative thing.

Fortunately we have DU where we are free to discuss these issues among politically liberal posters.

Having one big conservative party has effectively neutralized the progressives of the Party.

This wasnt an accident. Obama ran as a progressive and got support from the left. But immediately, starting at his inauguration he leaped right. I saw it with his choices of Rick Warren and Rahm Emanuel and the dismissal of Howard Dean. Couldnt wait to distance himself from the left.

Technically it's still a two party system but one party is conservative and the other party is wacko. This is the perfect system for the Powers To Be. They use the wackos to scare the hell out of us, then we are grateful for the party of Gen Clapper, Penny Pritzker, Tim Geitner, Lawrence Summers, Ben Bernanke, William M. Daley, Jeff Immelt, Dave Cote, Robert Gates, Gen Stanley McChrystal, Jacob Lew, Jeremiah Norton, Gen Petraeus, John Brennen, Chuck Hegal, Michael Taylor, James Comey, Robert Mueller, Rahm Emanuel, Gen Alexander.

And what is in our future? Eight more years of pro-Wall Street administrations and the sinking of American workers. How ironic that Citizens United may play a major role in getting H. Clinton-Sachs elected.

It's time we run the conservatives out of our party and back to the Republican Party where they belong.

The Stock Market is a fool's game. In a good economy it may grow with economic growth but the

big money is made in the fluctuations of the bubbles. Some bubbles are small and some are large. Big money can manipulate the bubbles to their benefit and the loss of the fools that think they might get rich (or even make an honest gain).

The fools believe the propaganda that they are "investing" in the economy or in a company. That is a bald faced lie. If I buy General Motors stock today, the company will not see a dime of that money. They wont use my money to help their company. I am essentially laying my money down as a bet that the price will go up. It is like going to the window at the horse races and saying give me $1,000 on GM. I take my ticket and watch the "race" hoping to cash in with GM in the lead.

Company executives have learned that they can make more money by manipulating their companies stock price and cashing in.
Alan Greenspan, who is so out of touch with reality that he was shocked when he learned that company executives would put their personal gain ahead of the health of their company. Idiot.

The Stock Market is one way to transfer the wealth in retirement funds from the 99.99% into the pockets of the 0.01%.

I think when Obama ran the first time he thought he needed the left's help.

As soon as elected, he jumped toward the right. I think he decided he no longer needed to be concerned with the left as they had no where to go and he concentrated on winning the hearts of the New Democrats (converted Republicans).

The strategy was smart. As I see it, if you convince a non-voter to vote for you, that's worth one vote. In other words if the score was 10 votes to 10 votes and you got a non-voter to vote then the score would be 11 to 10. If you convince an opponents voter to switch that is worth two votes. A 10 to 10 tie would change to 11 to 9. So if you piss off a left voter by nominating Penny Pritzker, for example, you might lose a left voter and gain a middle/right voter. So this would result in a 10 to 9 result. So losing a left voter and gaining a right voter is a smart strategy. In fact, I think statistics show that only about 25% of the pissed off left voters actually refuse to vote, meaning you would only be losing 0.75% of a vote by pissing off the left, leaving you with a 10.75 to 9 margin by wooing the right/center.
Posted by rhett o rick | Sat Nov 9, 2013, 11:34 AM (1 replies)

Here are some links to other NSA posts.

The Guardian: The NSA Files
http://www.theguardian.com/world/the-nsa-files

How The NSA Deploys Malware: An In-Depth Look at the New Revelations
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023818959

Feinstein’s Phony Excuse for NSA Spying
http://www.democraticunderground.com/101675361

Attacking 'Tor': How the NSA Targets Users' Online Anonymity...
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014611160#post9

NSA director admits agency trawls Twitter/Facebook but insists they are NOT building personal files-
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014609181

NSA stores metadata of millions of web users for up to a year, secret files show
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014606615

N.S.A. Gathers Data on Social Connections of U.S. Citizens (NYT)
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023743322

N.S.A. Examines Social Networks of U.S. Citizens (Decision Made In Secret 2010)
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014605329

Dianne Feinstein Accidentally Confirms That NSA Tapped The Internet Backbone
http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=3740768

NSA Employee Spied on Nine Women Without Detection, Internal File Shows...
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014604898

Sen. Ron Wyden: NSA "repeatedly deceived the American people"
http://www.democraticunderground.com/11781761

I also dont have patience for bigotry but realize that when these issues

that are very emotional come along, some times in the fervor to rid ourselves of bigots, innocent people get swept away by the mob. These issues are some times used by righteous bullies to attack others that they declare as bigots. I have seen cases where decent posters were falsely bullied out of DU under the justification of righteousness. Just a week ago a poster declared another poster as transphobic and proceeded to call her horrible names. He totally misinterpreted her post, either by accident or intent, and used the justification to say terrible things. His post was hidden but not before it did it's damage.

Your post 104 dont sound like the rationale of an open-minded Democrat. Sounds like a mob call. We have methods of dealing with bigots here and dont need to panic. Instant PPR sounds like something a tyrant would love, not Democrats. And we must never, ever censure a juror for how they vote.

Some times it's obvious who the bigots are and some times it's subjective. We need to avoid the rush to judgement that the conservatives love so much. We must not allow the bullies to ruin DU.

I am glad you posted this. I welcome a discussion of authoritarianism.

So let’s chat about authoritarianism. I recommend the book, “The Authoritarians,” by Bob Altemeyer. I think it important for further discussions re. authoritarianism.

Common definitions of authoritarian include:

“Characteized by or favoring absolute obedience to authority, as against individual freedom.
Of or relating to, or favoring a concentration of power in a leader or an elite.”

When Snowden stepped forward to expose possible violations of law and our Constitution he was greeted by those that immediately wanted him arrested and punished. They made it clear that they supported the “authority” of the NSA. They, at that time, derided those (anti-authoritarians) that cried for investigations and further discussion. They disparaged those calling for open-mindedness and skepticism. They did not want further investigations or oversight. So at that time there were two basic points of view.

One point of view wanted to blindly believe that the “authorities” were not violating the law. In fact some actually came out and said, “The NSA is not violating the law.” This is important because this point of view was convinced that the “authorities” were above the need for review. It characterized those calling for investigations and transparency as having “hair on fire” and were racist among other ridiculous labels, seemingly desperate to stifle discussion. This point of view clearly meets the definition of authoritarianism.

The “anti-authoritarian” point of view (as labeled in the OP) believed that the revelations of Snowden indicated that review and more transparency was needed. This is not blindly following authority; in fact this view was skeptical of authority as open-minded people know that authority can be corrupted, especially if operating in secrecy.

The OP states that the anti-authoritarian point of view tried to stifle honest discussion (looks like projection to me). Well, it’s not too late. I would love to have an honest discussion. I would love to see the arguments of those that don’t agree with the anti-authoritarian point of view. I posted an OP that laid out what I thought was the non-anti-authoritarian’s arguments and the non-anti-authoritarians tried to get it locked. I can see that maybe I didn’t make a good case for the non-anti-authoritarians. So please lay out your arguments.

In a Democracy it is the people’s responsibility to be skeptical of authority. Authoritarianism and democracy don’t mix.
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