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Mon Sep 18, 2017, 09:59 PM

If only we had European-style Hate Speech Laws on the books, we wouldn't have a white supremacist in

the White House. I firmly believe that to be a fact. He would've been arrested the day after he first opened that scum hole under his nose during the campaign and began spewing hate.

Yeah, I know there are First Amendment implications to consider. However, I consider what he does is to be more akin to incitement to violence, with what occurred in Charlottesville being a prime example of that. Every white supremacist and penny-ante Nazi has been emboldened by this egregious man's toxic presence in the WH.

The other argument I constantly against the implementation of comprehensive Hate Speech Laws revolves around who gets to decide what constitutes hate speech and why. I honestly don't know the answer to that question. However, I'd like to know how is it possible for the Europeans to somehow enforce these laws sensibly and logically but we're somehow incapable of doing the same. Are we dumber than they are? Less civilized?

I dunno. I'm of the opinion that both Hate Speech and Hate Crime laws (which we do, thankfully, have) promotes a level of decency and humanity that all nations should aspire to. Without them, it just seems that we're giving possibly the worst element of our society free reign to verbally terrorize others based on who they are and engage in dangerous, vitriolic demagoguery.

Where am I going wrong here?

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Reply If only we had European-style Hate Speech Laws on the books, we wouldn't have a white supremacist in (Original post)
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 OP
Iggo Sep 2017 #1
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #4
Iggo Sep 2017 #8
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #10
Baconator Sep 2017 #14
jberryhill Sep 2017 #16
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #22
jberryhill Sep 2017 #34
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #41
Expecting Rain Sep 2017 #37
GulfCoast66 Sep 2017 #38
muriel_volestrangler Sep 2017 #47
Demsrule86 Sep 2017 #94
jberryhill Sep 2017 #5
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #23
jberryhill Sep 2017 #30
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #44
Kentonio Sep 2017 #63
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #68
Kentonio Sep 2017 #74
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #76
Kentonio Sep 2017 #81
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #82
Kentonio Sep 2017 #84
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #85
Kentonio Sep 2017 #87
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #89
Kentonio Sep 2017 #91
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #92
tritsofme Sep 2017 #105
hack89 Sep 2017 #2
sarah FAILIN Sep 2017 #3
WinkyDink Sep 2017 #6
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #7
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #20
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #35
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #46
jberryhill Sep 2017 #39
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #43
jberryhill Sep 2017 #56
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #67
jberryhill Sep 2017 #78
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #79
WinkyDink Sep 2017 #55
sarisataka Sep 2017 #9
mythology Sep 2017 #11
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #13
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #19
Piasladic Sep 2017 #12
msongs Sep 2017 #15
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #18
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #17
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #28
jberryhill Sep 2017 #31
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #42
Demsrule86 Sep 2017 #95
bluepen Sep 2017 #21
EllieBC Sep 2017 #24
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #25
EllieBC Sep 2017 #29
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #45
brooklynite Sep 2017 #26
ProudLib72 Sep 2017 #27
Azathoth Sep 2017 #32
ileus Sep 2017 #104
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #110
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #33
Kentonio Sep 2017 #64
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #65
Kentonio Sep 2017 #66
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #69
Kentonio Sep 2017 #90
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #96
muriel_volestrangler Sep 2017 #71
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #73
muriel_volestrangler Sep 2017 #75
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #80
muriel_volestrangler Sep 2017 #88
LittleBlue Sep 2017 #97
tritsofme Sep 2017 #36
Tumbulu Sep 2017 #40
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #48
Tumbulu Sep 2017 #98
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #99
Tumbulu Sep 2017 #100
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #101
Tumbulu Sep 2017 #108
Tumbulu Oct 2017 #121
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #49
sarisataka Sep 2017 #52
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #58
tritsofme Sep 2017 #59
sarisataka Sep 2017 #60
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #70
dawg Sep 2017 #50
Dr. Strange Sep 2017 #62
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #77
melm00se Sep 2017 #51
Loki Liesmith Sep 2017 #54
uponit7771 Sep 2017 #72
WinkyDink Sep 2017 #102
Loki Liesmith Sep 2017 #53
struggle4progress Sep 2017 #57
onenote Sep 2017 #61
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #83
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #86
NobodyHere Sep 2017 #106
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #109
Demsrule86 Sep 2017 #93
ileus Sep 2017 #103
Seeking Serenity Sep 2017 #107
Fluke a Snooker Sep 2017 #111
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #112
tritsofme Sep 2017 #113
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #114
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #115
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #117
Warren DeMontague Sep 2017 #119
jcmaine72 Sep 2017 #120
WinkyDink Sep 2017 #116
name not needed Sep 2017 #118

Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:03 PM

1. Where are you going wrong?

Being anti-first-amendment.

That's where.

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Response to Iggo (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:08 PM

4. Thanks for putting words in my mouth.

I guess that ten paragraph diatribe I obviously posted above in which I called for its abolition gave me away, right?

This might come as a shock to you, but some of our constitutional amendments have been subject to different interpretations at different times. It's part of the genius of our Constitution - its generational adaptability and flexibility...within reason, of course. I don't see how labeling Hate Speech as an act of violence is against the spirit of the First Amendment.

See how easy that was? I was able to express my opinion without insulting you or resorting to dismissive, condescending language. Neat trick, eh?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #4)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:15 PM

8. You asked me. I answered.

Not my fault you don't like what I said.

But I'm not putting words in your mouth.

I read what you said and I responded with the obvious answer.

You're not the first and you won't be the last person through here trial-balooning getting rid of freedom of speech.

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Response to Iggo (Reply #8)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:21 PM

10. Can you please show me where I specifically called for getting rid of freedom of speech?

That's quite a leap you made there. Absolutely kangaroo like. Because I believe hate speech should be interpreted legally as an act of violence or incitement to violence, that somehow means to you that I'm against free speech. Remarkable.

Well, I guess we have nowhere to go from there, do we?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #10)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:30 PM

14. Just the speech you don't like?

What exactly qualifies as hate speech again? Using technical legal terms please...

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Response to Baconator (Reply #14)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:08 PM

16. How do Europeans manage to have more robust political discourse than we do?

 


They have multi party democracies representing a wider range of opinions, and their hate speech laws don't seem to have impacted that.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #16)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:23 PM

22. "more robust political discourse" is a matter of subjective opinion.

And it doesn't really matter whether their laws impact it, or not. Were we to try to implement such things here, they would clearly go against the 1st Amendment, and the 1st Amendment not only stands as a watershed beacon in humanity's march towards liberty and freedom of conscience, it also has worked just fine since the bill of rights was first written.

To argue that the first thing we need to do in "response" to a totalitarian shitwit like trump is ditch one of the primary CORE systematic constitutional protections keeping us from ACTUAL fascism... I really don't know how anyone comes up with this shit with a straight face. It's mind-boggling, it's such a bald-faced, inanely wrong-headed, bad idea.

If you look back over the history of the US, far more excesses in terms of violence and oppression were enabled by ignoring or diminishing the 1A, than have been through its careful and proper execution and respect.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #22)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:53 PM

34. Okay I'll bite

 

"If you look back over the history of the US, far more excesses in terms of violence and oppression were enabled by ignoring or diminishing the 1A"

Do you have a list of said "excesses" for analysis, or is that your subjective opinion?

Here's a few "excessses of violence and oppression", in no particular order:

1. Japanese dispossession and internment.

2. Slavery

3. Assorted lynchings.

4. Our violent crime rate.

Feel free to add or dispute items on that off-the-cuff list of "excesses of violence and oppression" in US history. I fail to see how they were caused by lack of adherence to the 1A.

In fact, the Japanese internees published their own newspapers. They did not get out of the camps by publishing newspapers.

So list the excesses you had in mind.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #34)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 02:48 AM

41. They weren't caused BY the 1st Amendment, either.

The idea being presented here is that somehow the 1st Amendment and our "excessive" protections of free speech (not to mention conscience and religious belief or lack thereof, the other pillar of the 1A) are somehow responsible for problems in the US, past and present.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #16)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 12:55 AM

37. Splinter groups, radical parties, and a weakened political center...

 

including the ever present threat of anti-Semiotic and anti-Muslim fascists and die-hard Maxisits isn't a political situation that deserves to be envied or emulated.

It is a cautionary example.

Abandoning liberalism (which has as a central value freedom of speech) would be a grave mistake.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #16)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 01:06 AM

38. They don't. That's how.

I love Europe and envy many of their social attitudes. As a matter of fact I am flying there tomorrow for three weeks.

But their limit of free speech has created a cynical attitude among much of the population, even those who are not inclined to support right wing politics.

The recent influx of hundreds of thousands of economic immigrants under the guise of refugees is putting their laws of the test.

Don't give me wrong, there are millions of true refugees in Europe who should be sheltered.



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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #38)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 03:32 AM

47. The cynical attitude among much of the US population elected Trump

who was not stopped from inciting hatred against immigrants and Muslims.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #16)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 06:35 AM

94. They don't.

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Response to Iggo (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:10 PM

5. That's merely dogmatic

 


At the time the First Amendment was written, it was not intended for everyone, and actual ownership of a printing press was restricted to a privileged few.

Would you also have simply responded "that's anti 18th Amendment" if someone said, "why can't we have a drink?"

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #5)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:24 PM

23. the 18th Amendment has been repealed. And it wasn't part of the Bill of Rights.

The 1st was put first for a reason.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #23)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:39 PM

30. So was the third

 


But the guy who published "Two Girls One Cup" still got sent to jail for obscenity, so it's not as if it is an absolute in the first place.

And let me say that, between you and I, there is only one of us who has ever defended anyone's 1st Amendment rights in court, and it's not you.

I find it interesting that the very question of "how does this work in the oppressive Canadian regime?" brings out such hostility and the usual articles of faith like "the best solution for bad speech is good speech" or "the marketplace of ideas" etc. instead of a reasoned answer as to why OBJECTIVE measures of civil liberty consistently do not rank the US as the leader.

http://www.worldaudit.org/civillibs.htm

What if there is a greater supply of "bad speech" or the marketplace would prefer VHS over Betamax?

Simply stating "it's in the Constitution" is not an argument. It is merely an observation of fact. The First Amendment did not free a single slave and, sure, worked fine for 70 odd years. If it is such a "core" principle of civil liberty, then how do you explain that?

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #30)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 03:09 AM

44. how do you know what I have, or haven't done? Serious question.

Objective measures of civil liberty are not the point. The 1st Amendment doesn't need fixing. The 1st Amendment may not have freed a single slave, but it sure as hell protected the voices of abolitionists.

You want to defend fmr. AG Gonzales's prosecutorial priorities- Tommy Chong, anyone?- knock yourself out, but again I'm not sure the gaggle of goons that comprised the upper echelons of the Bush II administration are really the most shining examples of respect for our Constitutional system. The reality there, is (thanks, google ) that no one went to jail for THAT video, apparently, and it's not like that dude invented cinematic coprophagy in the first place (Pasolini, helloooo?)

...What Gonzales of course missed in his apparent misguided anti-obscenity salvos, is the Streisand effect, to which more people no doubt know about that video - and have seen it, although I'm not going there, you're welcome to - than ever would have if he hadn't used the resources of the DOJ to go after said nasty smut-producer. In short, whatever anti-"obscenity" shutdowns of speech may apply in theory, in actuality it seems the thing is readily findable on the intertubes.

If, you know, you're into that sort of thing.

As for Canada, speaking of Porn, when they adopted Catherine MacKinnon's ideas about saving women and society from oppressive heteronormative smutty-smut, oddly enough some of the first material that was censored was Lesbian porn. Which sort of dials back into this idea that however well-intentioned (or not) these pleas to "just let us restrict the BAD speech!!!!!!!!", the fact of the matter is those tools can- and, almost invariably will- be used to restrict the speech of the oppressed, the radical, the subversive, or the unpopular.

The Marketplace did prefer VHS over betamax, so we ended up with VHS. I realize beta was technically a better format, but beyond that who cares? We survived.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #44)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 12:22 PM

63. Erm..

 

"The 1st Amendment may not have freed a single slave, but it sure as hell protected the voices of abolitionists."

You see the irony there that most of Europe banned slavery before the US I take it?

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #63)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 05:36 PM

68. Yeah, and England wasn't exactly prime cotton-growing country, either.

I mean the South's economy was built on slavery.

The larger point, here, is I'll never understand the fucking hard-on some "progressives" have to get rid of free speech. It's fucking mind-boggling, to me.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #68)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:27 PM

74. Why would you see a contradiction?

 

You're talking as if unrestrained free speech is automatically a progressive value, which is a point open to serious debate.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #74)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:34 PM

76. Because I do.

It seems self-evident to me that the freedom of the mind, intellectual freedom, incuding freedom of expression, is a vitally important watershed concept in the progression of the human animal from the demon-haunted state we inhabited for much of our history, governed by gods, kings, snarks and boojums --- to ideally something better.

Progress.

I'm also not someone who looks around and imagines that if I just could shut up everyone who disagrees with me, our problems would be solved. It would certainly simplify matters, but I'm not so timid and weak that i cant just defend my own ideas, instead.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #76)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 02:28 AM

81. Yet you should also recognize that propaganda and psychological manipulation are real

 

And that there's a very real difference between a conversation or debate, and speech intended to inflame or arouse hatred.

There seems a childishness in the idea that either speech has to be completely free or else it's oppression. Nothing we do is completely free, it's part of being a social animal. We sacrifice areas of freedom to live more safely and comfortably alongside others.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #81)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 02:36 AM

82. fine, it's "childish" to support the 1st Amendment. Bill of Rights? clearly written by toddlers.

very real difference between a conversation or debate, and speech intended to inflame or arouse hatred.


really? a "very real" difference? One that would make for good legislation?

How many conversations or debates inflame or arouse hatred? "blasphemous" cartoons or a picture of two men getting married, those might inflame or arouse hatred, no? even -gasp!- intentionally?

Jesus, I just say "shit, I support the 1st Amendment, it doesn't need fixing" it seems to arouse hatred. Some people positively lose their shit at the thought that anyone might 'childishly' object to them running around with a giant fucking list of what everyone else is "allowed" to say, or challenging the derpy notion that if only we would let them clamp down on all this annoying freedom, all our problems would go away.


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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #82)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 02:48 AM

84. And there's the childishness in the argument

 

You can't even discuss the possibility that some forms of public discourse could differ from others, without launching into a ridiculous argument ad absurdum.

As for the founders and the constitution, no they weren't toddlers, they were simply men who wrote a set of principles of law in a time completely different to our own, when the means of communication we have today were not even dreamt of, and when social discourse was already heavily regulated by the norms of polite society. In that era people could not and did not say anything they liked, and would have faced open and public violence if they had. The first amendment was a rule intended to protect political and philosophical speech.

But no, just like the 2nd amendment, today people use it to demand completely freedom with absolutely no responsibility. The irony is that people like yourself talk about the impossibility of legislation, when countless other democratic countries already have it, and experience no oppression as a result.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #84)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 03:06 AM

85. there is no ambiguity in "Congress shall make no law...". That is unambiguous language.

The fact that many people can't simply deal with free speech - speech, mind you- and need to scramble to find "exceptions" or justify them, that it bothers them so deeply and profoundly- probably indicates something about the human psyche.

These "countless other democratic countries" don't have the 1st Amendment written into their national legal DNA. (the 2nd Amendment can also be read as unambiguous, but unlike the 1A also contains the qualifier about a "well-regulated militia" ) And for all the talk of how wonderful these speech restricting laws are, these countries still have xenophobia, they still have far right political parties- there's no evidence that these laws have accomplished--- anything, really. Even Germany, which certainly has some reasons of their own baked into their legal DNA for forbidding Nazi iconography, ends up using those laws against Chinese tourists who don't even understand what the salute they're making even means. Arresting them does not keep Germany from sliding back into fascism, to argue otherwise is inane.

But, yeah, lets go with that: just a law that outlaws Nazi gestures! Who could be opposed to that? And think of all the problems it would solve... like, real-world problems! Gone overnight through a simple piece of well-intentioned legislation! Right?


...right?









Okay, congratulations. You've just outlawed the funniest episode of Fawlty Towers.


And that's, again, the crux of the biscuit. It's not just that it's impossible to craft a meaningful legal definition of "hate speech" that would work in OUR constitutional framework, it is also that symbiology and speech is so intrinsically tied to context and meaning and interpretation that there is no fucking way you can haul it into a court of law and judge it on a rational, consistent, objective basis.

So what you're left with, again, is jimmying with one of this nation's bedrock principles of liberty simply because some speech pisses some people off. Terrible idea.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #85)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 04:16 AM

87. Who cares about ambiguity or a lack of it in an amendment written 226 years ago?

 

Seriously, you're applying a mystique to the constitution that is almost religious. It was a system of laws written by intelligent but by no means infallible people over two centuries ago.

As for it not having any tangible effect in other countries, that is simply palpably untrue. To use the German example you keep referencing, in Germany the laws regarding anti-nazi symbology and gestures was a direct attempt to prevent the resurgence of a political movement that had just caused the mass genocide of millions of people and torn the world to pieces in the largest conflict mankind had ever known. It wasn't a symbolic gesture, it was a law to prevent actually living nazis from publicly rallying and trying to bring back that ideology. Today you can look at it and make snarky comments, but even today there are people alive who were members of the actual real life nazi party, and many, many more of their children. As more time passes those laws may become an anachronism, but that's the whole point here, things change over time, and what was once a very logical and rational piece of legislation can become obsolete.

You want another example, look at the actions of the Westboro baptist church. In no other western democracy would that kind of hateful anti-social vileness be tolerated. In America at the time the constitution was actually written, that would never have been allowed or accepted, and would certainly have resulted in at best the beating, and more likely the killing of those people. Now however it's openly allowed in America, because of an overly simplistic reading of a document with its interpretation taken to wild extremes with a slippery slope argument thrown in for good measure. Because despite every other western democracy having carefully nuanced laws and rules of society that change over time to reflect the standards of the time, America insists on hero worshipping centuries dead slave owners and treating the words they wrote as literal gospel truth.

So yes, its time for America to grow up and do the basic things other countries have been doing quite successfully for decades if not centuries.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #87)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 04:35 AM

89. And... so the westboro shitheads are allowed to broadcast to the world exactly how awful they are.



...and?


no, seriously.


.............and?







And.... the end result- in entirety- is that everyone knows the now-deceased Fred Phelps and his tiny band of followers are assholes. That's it.

Oh, and they make the rest of the Christian far right look bad.

So you would junk what is, again, a bulwark against totalitarianism just so 10 Westboro Baptist idiots couldn't carry their stupid fucking signs? You're kidding yourself, if you don't see how speech suppression could - would- be misused by the powerful; MOST 1st Amendment cases have to do not with things like Nazis marching in Skokie, but rather things like the pentagon papers. Vietnam war protests.

I don't understand the fetish for getting rid of obnoxious speech (not to mention the delusion that it would only be used by the "good" people against the "bad" speech) I really don't. Yes, it's obnoxious. Yes, those people are assholes. Yes, they have outed themselves as scum on the bottom of the pond of human consciousness.

But shutting them up would accomplish nothing.


And yeah, I respect the constitution and the bill of rights. For all the flaws of the founding fathers, it is a remarkable and incredibly important document. Do I "revere" the 1st Amendment? Fucking A I do.



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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #89)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 05:18 AM

91. The point is that these examples of misuse of free speech represent a larger picture

 

It's about people living side by side in society in a way that doesn't involve them driving each other crazy, and leading to mass anti-social behavior and violence. In most countries its not ok to disrupt grieving parents at a childs funeral, its not ok to call your neighbours racial or homophobic slurs and make their lives a living hell, its not ok to publicly broadcast vile hate speech on the radio and TV to create a mass divide in the country where millions of people think millions of others are scum who are attacking the fabric of the nation.

But hey, according to you none of this has any effect on anything, and the first amendment is gospel. Ok then.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #91)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 06:10 AM

92. Yep. I don't want to fuck with the 1st Amendment.

Sorry.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #89)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 10:27 AM

105. You have done yeoman's work here. Thank you.

Your defense of the of speech and the First Amendment was as brilliant as the other poster's clear authoritarian tendencies were disturbing.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:05 PM

2. Who says Europeans enforce the laws sensibly and logically?

No reason to believe that they are not abused - it is the nature of all governments to abuse power.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:06 PM

3. Yes we would.

He would just censor himself better. I like it better like this in a way because at least I know who they are.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:11 PM

6. Oh, brother. To dismiss the 1st Amendment with "Yeah, I know...."

 

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #6)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:14 PM

7. You're entitled to your opinion, but if three words taken out of context are all you walked

away with from I wrote above, I honestly have to wonder why you bothered posting at all?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #7)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:15 PM

20. 'cuz this reflexive bullshit about going after the 1st Amendment as if THAT is somehow the problem

is fucking tired.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #20)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:56 PM

35. Oh, I see. So, that makes it okay to take what someone wrote out of context or to present their

argument dishonestly, as just did in this post and in one below (unless, of course, you can show me specifically where I called for the abolition of the First Amendment, that is)?

The Republicans use this strategy to great effect to arrogantly and childishly dismiss arguments they don't like, or to simply be vitriolic a-holes. I'm not saying that's necessarily what you're doing here, but deliberate dishonesty is certainly a strange tactic to employ in the defense of free speech, isn't it?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #35)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 03:32 AM

46. It really seems you don't understand the 1st Amendment, but you're not happy with it as it stands.

You are just "asking questions": Okay, I'll answer them, as best I can.

Yeah, I know there are First Amendment implications to consider. However, I consider what he does is to be more akin to incitement to violence, with what occurred in Charlottesville being a prime example of that. Every white supremacist and penny-ante Nazi has been emboldened by this egregious man's toxic presence in the WH.


If it's not even something specific that the dude has said, but just his presence, how do speech laws apply? Look, I don't like his presence either, but if you want to pass laws against specific expressions you need to define what it is you're talking about.

As it stands, it's pretty easy: Violence is not protected behavior. Even, certainly, crowds showing up with weapons (as they did in Charlottesville) - again, not protected speech. Saying "Go kill that person"- arguably incitement. Holding a rally without a permit, can get you into trouble too.

But none of that is terribly relevant to "hate speech laws", which you CAN'T have if you can't even define "hate speech". Therefore-

The other argument I constantly against the implementation of comprehensive Hate Speech Laws revolves around who gets to decide what constitutes hate speech and why. I honestly don't know the answer to that question.


That's not just a sort of side matter, to be determined later or shunted off. It's really the crux of the biscuit. Because defining some speech or opinion as "hate", while certainly easy from a subjective standpoint, is well-nigh impossible from a legal one. Because we don't have a preferred frame of philosophical reference from a legal standpoint.

However, I'd like to know how is it possible for the Europeans to somehow enforce these laws sensibly and logically but we're somehow incapable of doing the same. Are we dumber than they are? Less civilized?


Okay- do they? Are these laws REALLY making a whit's worth of difference in European countries? Europe still has nationalists, they still have far right wing parties, they sure as SHIT still have things like anti-semitism, homophobia, islamophobia, etc. Where is the evidence that these laws effect some great societal change that would make the US better? In Germany, for some obvious reasons, they have very specific laws pertaining to very specific speech and iconography- like, around Nazis and Nazi symbology. And I would never second-guess Germany's right to manage its own affairs as it sees fit, still in Germany you end up with situations like the Chinese tourists arrested for giving a Nazi salute - likely people who really had little or no understanding of what they were doing or the meaning it conveyed. Certainly they were not on the verge of rekindling widespread Nazi sentiment in Germany. So how much, really, do these laws accomplish?


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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #20)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 01:16 AM

39. Can you remind me of your view of the Citizen's United decision?

 


The majority of opinion at DU was that it was wrongly decided.

Although the facts of the CU case are not well understood by many who criticize it, because they seem to believe that it involved direct contributions to a candidacy, rather than a production company that wanted to make a movie.

But, to be clear, I'm going to guess that you agree that CU was correctly decided. Would that be correct?

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #39)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 02:54 AM

43. Boy, you sure seem to know quite a bit about me.

Last edited Tue Sep 19, 2017, 03:33 AM - Edit history (1)

Or else you're assuming you do.

If I was feeling particularly sadistic, I'd tell you to knock yourself out with DU's wonky search function for an hour or two, and look yourself. Find where I've commented on CU.

But I won't.

Short answer, I think as a matter of philosophical and legal principle we extend too many rights to "corporate citizen" entities while simultaneously ingorning some pretty basic ones that should apply to human citizen ones- witness how we've somehow decided that the government has the unfettered right to tell citizens what they can do with their own bodies, bloodstreams, and nervous systems, so we get prisons full of people guilty only of the "crime" of putting unauthorized substances into their own bodies- but that said, I don't think I've spent a ton of time opining on Citizens United. I tend to fall on the side of more expansive interpretations of freedom of speech, and while I think the cultural and sociopolitical implications of money in politics are pretty apparent, nevertheless there is reasoning there that I can't take issue with.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #43)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 10:18 AM

56. I was just asking the question

 

Last edited Tue Sep 19, 2017, 11:00 AM - Edit history (1)

Because of the way that it was received here generally. If I knew your opinion, I wouldn't be asking the question.

So, the New York Times Corporation should not have the same rights under the 1A as a company that was formed to make a film?

I'm confused by that, since many of the landmark 1A cases involve defendants who were corporations.

Most of the FOIA cases likewise involve corporations seeking information to publish as well.

Okay, I'll buy that. So if a corporate entity is publishing "hate speech" (however defined), then you would be more flexible about that?

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #56)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 05:34 PM

67. I don't think you understood. While I question "money is speech" and "corporations are people"

I'm probably in the minority here on CU, in that I separate the negative impacts of the decision from the decision itself, which was probably correctly decided.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #67)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:53 PM

78. Neither of those formulations is what the decision was about, though

 


Speech is a huge business. Speech is one of the biggest businesses in the US and, by far, the biggest industry in California. In 2014 alone, the business of speech generated $293B of economic activity in that state alone.

Most of the landmark 1A decisions involve corporations speaking - The New York Times, Hustler, publishers and filmmakers of all kinds.

What CU was about was the equation - built into campaign finance law - that if you want to buy a press and say something about a politician, and I want to give you money to help you buy that press, then my money counts as a "contribution" to that politician, even if that politician and his/her campaign don't see a dime of my money and don't own that press.

Does the 1A allow me to buy a copy of the New York Times, and likewise allow the New York Times to sell me a copy, or is that just some sort of commercial transaction that has nothing to do with "speech"?

It's a money making proposition. This site is a money making proposition. I'm not too sure that one can draw some kind of distinction between "speech" and "commerce" as neatly as some believe.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #78)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 07:11 PM

79. I'm not either, which is why I am not one of the people putting that decision on the front burner.

I'd rather live with a more expansive interpretation of the 1st Amendment even if the societal fallout is negative, in this case money in elections.

More impactful, to my mind, is the recent SCOTUS decision on redistricting, anyway.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #7)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 10:11 AM

55. Brevity is the soul of wit. It is YOU about whom I wonder, re: "bothered posting at all." NOTHING

 

YOU COULD WRITE, NOTHING, AND NO AMOUNT OF VERBIAGE, NONE, CAN JUSTIFY ANY OF YOUR PREMISE. ANY.

Your PREMISE, in case you are unaware, is your opening dependent clause: "If only we had European-style Hate Speech Laws on the books...."

The rest of your post makes unproven claims (that the Euros somehow prosecute these laws ably); ridiculous assumptive queries (that, without having and enforcing such laws so admirably equitably, Americans are less intelligent, less "civilized" ) ; and a specious "legal argument" (that despicable speech, currently protected by the First Amendment, is inciteful to riot, without actually exhorting a crowd TO so riot).

How's THAT for "context"?

So no, you do not come out and suggest the abolition of the First Amendment. You simply seek its gutting.


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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:16 PM

9. Despite such laws

Europe is far from hate free. The laws didn't keep Le Pen from forcing a run off or far right parties from challenging and winning seats across Europe...

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:23 PM

11. You do realize there are far right parties in Europe right?

 

Take Alternative for Germany which actively wants to ban Muslims and forbid building mosques.

In France, the Nationalist Front had nazi sympathizers as some of their founders and the founder is openly anti-Semitic and racist, including denying the Holocaust. In the last round of national elections, they won a plurality of the first round of voting.

In the Netherlands, the Party for Freedom wants to ban Islam and record the ethnic makeup of all Dutch citizens. Yes Geert Wilders has been prosecuted, but so far unsuccessfully.

The Golden Dawn party still exists in Greece in spite of calling for an ethnically pure nation. And this is a party that has had leaders arrested for murder.

Jobbik in Hungary wants to not hush up the "zionist conspiracy".

The People's Party Our Slovakia is led by a guy who thinks the former Slovakian leader Tiso who sent many thousands of Jewish people to concentration camps was a swell guy.

I think you greatly over estimate what would have happened.

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Response to mythology (Reply #11)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:28 PM

13. That's a fair point. I'm certainly not arguing that such laws are enforced flawlessly at all times.

However, the idea of someone like Trump presiding over the German government seems remote at best, and hate speech laws are a big part of why that is. Given their history, of course, that's not surprising. Trump and his phalanx of deplorables possess a stench that they are well familiar with.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #13)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:14 PM

19. Germany in the 1930s didn't have the 1st Amendment, either.

Censorship makes totalitarianism easier, not harder.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:26 PM

12. Freedom of Speech

As long as you aren't inciting violence, I hear speech is protected. So where does hate speech mingle with incitement? Pretty much until it calls for violence. Running people over with a car is definitely violent.

However, as Americans, we are different from our European counterparts. It's legal to raise your right hand and proclaim your love for Nazi ideals. It's legal to love Hitler, want to abuse children, and to wear white after Labor Day.

The difference is you CANNOT put Jews in ovens, destroy the Constitution, nor rape anyone.

We as Americans can read books that are illegal in France, make gestures that are illegal in Germany, and have press that is not constrained (as of yet) by government approval.

It's hard. I have often wondered if it's ok to arrest someone making a Nazi saute to further Nazi ideals or promulgating the 'Rise of a Nation' or Frantz Fanon's The Wretched of the Earth .



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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 10:37 PM

15. lets get some of those old fashioned blasphemy laws here? no thanx nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #15)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:12 PM

18. Oh, some people are just chomping at the fucking BIT for that.

Ooooh, we're gonna outlaw hate speech! Gooody!

And the first three things to go will be satire aimed at religion, depictions of sex in media, and political protest.

Fucking brilliant.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:10 PM

17. Ah, yes, the problem is clearly the 1st Amendment.

What a great idea to combat totalitarianism, lets do away with that.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #17)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:33 PM

28. Where did I call for the First Amendment to be "done away with"?

Fine, you disagree, but why present my argument so dishonestly?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #28)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:42 PM

31. Because questioning things for discussion is blasphemy

 


The First Amendment provides that "Fuck you" is a reasoned argument that is as good as any other, and some folks are determined to demonstrate that because actually having a discussion is boring.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #31)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 02:49 AM

42. What's to discuss? Oh, yes, lets chip away at the 1st Amendment because we have a would-be mussolini

in the white house.

Hmmm, how shall I entertain such a fascinatingly compelling idea?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #28)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 06:37 AM

95. When you ban some forms of speech for what is essentially political reasons, the first amendment

is dead...and imagine what the GOP would do with something like that.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:22 PM

21. The great thing about the First Amendment

is that it allows ridiculous ideas like this to be voiced.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:26 PM

24. It sounds all well and fine until it gets used against you.

If you don't think that the RW wouldn't use "hate speech" laws to punish women's rights groups, BLM, SPLC, the ADL, and others you are living in a dream world.

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Response to EllieBC (Reply #24)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:28 PM

25. but ....we might be able to get the full frontal nudity off HBO!

That'd be worth living in a dystopian totalitarian nightmare, right?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #25)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:36 PM

29. I never understand why anyone thinks this is a good idea.

As a Jew I can tell you that no amount of hate speech laws protect anyone. Ask Jews in Europe who are under attack from the usual wannabe Nazis and when they are victims of crimes by others it's said to not be antisemitism.

All hate speech laws do is drive things underground where they fester and grow and become worse.

And yes yes, they'd take away Game of Thrones too.

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Response to EllieBC (Reply #29)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 03:13 AM

45. course.

we'd be protected from nipples and 'blasphemous' cartoons, yay.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:28 PM

26. If you have hate-speech laws, somebody gets to decide what is hate speech...

...it's as simple as that.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:29 PM

27. I think I would go the opposite direction and hit him hard with freedom of the press

That is something that needs to be pressed hard. The snowflakes seem to whine about it, and you know they whine because he taught them to whine.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:44 PM

32. Without getting into a philosophical argument, consider what happens when conservatives take power

Conservatives already regard everything from BLM to the civil rights laws as being "anti-white" hate speech. If we establish the power to ban speech based on "hate" content, what then happens to us when conservatives are in a position to interpret what constitutes hate?

These people are fascists to begin with. I'm not anxious to hand them any more anti-freedom tools for their arsenal.

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Response to Azathoth (Reply #32)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 09:46 AM

104. If properly applied there would be no conservatives.

We'd define all their ideas as hate speech. They couldn't say or do one thing without jail time...the only issue is we have to wait until we're in complete control again to where we get to design the bill, pass the bill, and sign the bill.

We can basically legislate them, and their ideas from existence....forever.


How can any of us here a DU oppose that?

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Response to ileus (Reply #104)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 12:09 AM

110. Probably very few, lest of all those here who have been the most vocal in attacking such laws.

How many tears were shed here when Limpballs lost advertisers and several radio stations dumped him because of the progressive boycott? Where were the free speech advocates on DU then demanding that Limpballs' advertisers be left alone and his radio program allowed to air in every market it previously had?

Yeah, they'll split hairs and argue that censoring hate speech in the private sector is okay, but not in the public one. However, doesn't it still amount to the same thing....shutting down hate speech? You're still silencing someone, right? Why is it better done by a mob with pitchforks and torches as opposed to accomplishing the same thing in neat, orderly and responsible fashion by our government?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 11:52 PM

33. Scrapping the First Amendment is practically impossible and would destroy our nation

 

An armed resistance would rise up and kill the people attempting to end the 1A. It's the fabric of our country since the founding. I would honestly rather fight and die against any anti-1A oppressor than watch my country die.

Are we dumber than they are? Less civilized?


We're more civilized. Europe never matured to the point where they allowed free speech. They still have authoritarian echoes in their legal system, including laws that are still on the books and enforced 1) insults against the monarchy, 2) heavy restrictions on protest, 3) blasphemy, 4) media restrictions where courts can stop newspapers from reporting facts on cases. Free healthcare gives many Americans the false impression that Europeans are the most advanced countries. They may be advanced in healthcare, but not much else. The UK, one of their richest countries, would be the 49th or 50th poorest state. Their infrastructure and housing is small and ancient. Most of their universities are nowhere close to ours.

We had a nice clean country to start with. They have the baggage of two world wars and outdated mindsets due to their ancient cultures.

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Response to LittleBlue (Reply #33)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 01:11 PM

64. That's pretty funny. I take it you've never actually been to Europe?

 

You talk about richest countries as if the vast amount of wealth in the US isn't held by a handful of individuals and corporations. You think the French with their 2 hour lunchbreaks, 30+ days of vacation a year, amazing healthy cuisine and generally polite and civilized population have a worse standard of life than the mass majority of Americans? You think most Americans live better than the Norwegians or Swedes with their sky high lifestyle and health outcomes and practically non-existent crime rates?

Seriously, go live in some other countries for a while and then come back and tell us how great the normal American way of life is. But hey, at least you can choose from a hundred different brands of snacks full of saturated fats eh.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #64)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 04:18 PM

65. "I take it" blah blah blah, here's a Brit explaining why Britain would be our poorest state + stats

 

This will come as something of a surprise to Americans, who generally think of Mississippi being so poor as to be almost third world in the extent of its deprivation. It'll also come as something of a surprise to most visitors to Britain, who generally see London as being representative. It isn't, London itself is the richest area of The European Union. There are other areas of Britain that are counted among the poorest. Britain is, really (and I say this as a native of the place) a truly world class and world wealthy city surrounded by an entirely unremarkable European country. And now for the surprise: Britain is poorer than Mississippi.

Mark Perry has a nice little calculation of how rich ("rich" here being measured by GDP) the various US states are and then comparing them to various European countries. And the results might surprise some. Germany is around and about Missouri, 38 on the list of states. The UK is just below West Virginia, number 47.

However, this isn't quite and totally exactly correct.

What Professor Perry has done is compare the purchasing power parity adjusted GDPs of the various other countries with the US state GDPs (actually, GVA, but that makes no difference here). And that's very nearly the right thing to do. If we want to compare how well people are doing then we've got to find some method of adjusting for the fact that things have different prices in different places. Food is rather more expensive in Europe than the US, medical care rather cheaper. We need some manner of adjusting for this: PPP is the solution. More of an art than a calculation but still, it's the generally accepted manner of doing things.


https://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2016/03/07/still-true-even-mississippi-is-richer-than-britain/#5d68ed16654f

It isn't just corporations

In the United States, the average household net-adjusted disposable income per capita is USD 41 071 a year,

http://www.oecdbetterlifeindex.org/countries/united-states/

Sweden, the average household net-adjusted disposable income per capita is USD 28 859 a year,

http://www.oecdbetterlifeindex.org/countries/sweden/

Save the insinuations and educate yourself beyond ideological anti-Americanism.

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Response to LittleBlue (Reply #65)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 05:13 PM

66. That's hilarious.

 

Now take that 40k and subtract money spent on healthcare insurance. Or maybe look beyond the simple financials and actually engage with my wider point which was that most of the first world has no problems paying more taxes and being more understanding about building societies that focus on the wellbeing of citizens rather than using them as a poor as fuck endentured labour force for big business.

The idea that Europe is less mature than America is a sick joke quite frankly.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #66)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 05:39 PM

69. Factoring that in, it's still much higher

 




https://www.bls.gov/opub/btn/volume-5/household-healthcare-spending-in-2014.htm

Mean expenditure per household $4,290. That still leaves US households about $7k more disposable income after health care. And that's comparing one of the wealthiest states in the EU with the entirety of America. If you think of the EU as a collection of states like the American states, you'd compare it to a state like Connecticut or Massachusetts. Comparing Sweden to one of our wealthier states and not factoring in the poorest, the gap would be much higher.

Now you know.


Education? The top 100 wealthiest universities in the world, the US dominates. The highest European university is all the way down at #15, Cambridge.

Top 20 universities: 1 from Saudi Arabia, 2 from Europe, 17 from the United States.

https://thebestschools.org/features/richest-universities-endowments-generosity-research/

Don't extrapolate a good healthcare system over the rest of their society. It's misleading.

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Response to LittleBlue (Reply #69)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 05:13 AM

90. And yet again you focus straight in on money.

 

Incidentally it's amusing that you want to group the EU together as a single unit, when last I checked Mississippi has been part of the United States for over 200 years, while the likes of Croatia have been in the EU for a grand total of 4 years.

Let's roll with it for now though.

Life Expectancy: EU - 80.6 years, US - 78.74 years

Even more interesting when you consider it compared to healthcare spending.


Homicide Rate per 100,000: EU - 1.71, US - 5.9
Suicide Rate per 100,000: EU - 11.0, US - 12.6
Bankruptcy rates: Hell, the US is the world number 1.

Not to mention small things like number of people going without healthcare due to costs:
https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-care/united-states-comes-last-again-health-compared-other-countries-n684851

It's interesting by the way that you mentioned the top universities. Right there you zero straight in on the main problem with America. The best of the best available is generally better than anything else in the world. You can get the best education, the best healthcare, the best legal council, the best material possessions. The only trouble is that only a tiny, tiny fraction of people ever actually see those things, because the system is set up in such a way as to focus all the energy at the top. Everyone is told that if they work hard they can have it all, and when the vast majority inevitably fail they're told it was because they didn't work hard enough, or make the right choices, or they just weren't good enough, and because of that they have to make do with shitty conditions that people in the rest of the developed world wouldn't tolerate for a moment.

I'm so tired of it.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #90)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 01:33 PM

96. Because money is important

 

The French president Macron is trying to fix their economy to be more like ours, so they can generate the excess wealth like we do.

And that chart is so dumb. That chart also doesn't even factor in things like obesity, which is much higher here than there and is entirely a personal choice. Without factoring in obesity and country of origin that chart is meaningless.





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Response to LittleBlue (Reply #33)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:11 PM

71. As far as universities go:

Remembering that the UK has about one fifth of the population of the USA, here's an international comparison table:
https://www.topuniversities.com/university-rankings/world-university-rankings/2018
Top 10: USA 5, UK 4
Top 50: USA 18, UK 9
Top 100: USA 30, UK 16
Top 200: USA 46, UK 28

So, yeah, the UK's universities more than measure up to American ones.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #71)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:20 PM

73. Those are subjective rankings. I posted rankings by endowments

 

Which allows US universities to do more research than European ones, and attract the top talent for professors and researchers.

17 of the top 20 in the world are American.

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Response to LittleBlue (Reply #73)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:34 PM

75. Kerching! You are trying to measure intelligence and civilization with wealth.

Wow. Just wow. There's your problem, right there.

You don't think that public funding of universities has a bearing on the research they can do?

You're digging a hole for yourself here. Are you really claiming that "King Abdullah University of Science and Technology", est. 2009, is the 6th best university in the world? It's a joke.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #75)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 08:42 PM

80. The original question was about civilization

 

One component of that, IMO, is advancement. Money allows us to do more of it, and attract the top talent. That is why we have a Silicon Valley and Europe doesn't. We attracted the top thinkers in the world with our universities. Europeans complain about losing talent to the US due to our higher salaries.

It's not really "US has more money, we're best." We just use our money to attract and develop more talent.

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Response to LittleBlue (Reply #80)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 04:26 AM

88. Your system puts the money under private control

Most of those US universities with huge reserves of cash are private universities. All the British ones are public. You use your money to create privilege. It's ridiculous to use that as a measure of how 'dumb' (yes, that was the original question) or civilized a system is.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #88)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 01:35 PM

97. Of course we do.

 

You use your money to create privilege.


What else is the point of money? I'm not anti-money/capitalism like so many on DU. The economies of Europe are trying to become like ours because they are so far behind.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 12:09 AM

36. Swell idea. Let's give the Justice Department, headed by one Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III

The power to decide who is prosecuted for "hate speech"

What could possibly go wrong?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 01:19 AM

40. I agree with you 100%

And it seems to me that liberals suffer from 1st amendment nut jobs as much as conservatives suffer from 2 nd amendment nut jobs.

As whitnessed in the attacks on what you must have hoped could be an interesting discussion.

These types of people defend violent porn as well.

As far as I am concerned, they all deserve T, their fanatical resistance to any sort of reasonable discussion of how to have a more civil union brought this nightmare on. Just as much as those who voted for him did.

Yes, I'm not over this, and so far, I don't forgive anyone for getting us into this horrible predicament. And defending hate speech as "free speech" is one of the many transgressions.

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Response to Tumbulu (Reply #40)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 03:34 AM

48. So, out of curiosity: what's the FIRST thing you want censored?

It's banned book week, so why not start the list?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #48)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 07:54 PM

98. i really like you Warren, so I will answer your question

I would ban violent porn. I would ban advocating violence against any marginalized group (race, gender, etc). I would ban advocating violence and championing bullying behavior.

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Response to Tumbulu (Reply #98)

Thu Sep 21, 2017, 04:05 AM

99. I understand. I'm against violence, too, but I don't think censorship is any way to fight/stop it.

I think it's a bad idea under the best or ideal circumstances, and in a situation when we seem to have authoritarians in charge who have little respect or even understanding of our constitutional system, I think it's a terribly dangerous one.

That said, I would never censor its expression.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #99)

Thu Sep 21, 2017, 12:31 PM

100. But we are a community of people and images are powerful......

I am very disturbed by the normalization of cruelty, torture, the ideas that SOME people are objects for the pleasure of others.

I do not understand why it is somehow protected speech to blast these ideas out on public airwaves- i.e. the hate radio of Rush Limbaugh, etc. If someone wants to stand on a corner using their own air and public space, OK. But the public airwaves? Broadcasting? Inciting hatred and violence? I really do not understand how this was ever considered protected. Private businesses, perhaps. But violence is actually illegal. Why are images of them legal? Why is advocating beating gay people up legal speech?

And yes, I agree wholeheartedly with you that I do not trust these current maniacs in charge. Which is why it is all the more important to reign in this celebration of cruelty and marginalization of anyone who is not the rich alpha man.

Thanks for actually discussing this with me Warren. I am in such a fragile state from the results of this horrible "election". I can't handle snippy rough comments. way too fragile, and worried for our precious earth and it's living creatures. All of us. It might be my age, I take everything way too seriously.....

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Response to Tumbulu (Reply #100)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 03:11 AM

101. I'll try to answer in as linear and rational a fashion as I can.

I get it. Look, I make no bones about my believing very strongly in the 1st Amendment, just as I believe strongly in the rights of individuals to control their own bodies and to make their own determinations about their own lives. Probably anyone who has had to deal with me all these years on DU, has figured that out about me by now.

And this topic can set me off- I know that, about myself. I've joked to others here, "if I'm found dead of an anuerysm, put on my tombstone he got sucked into one too many 1st Amendment threads on DU". The ones where people were arguing that the government should be allowed to outlaw "blasphemy", for instance...



But let me try to lay it out--- without getting snippy.

For starts, you just can't outlaw ideas. Certainly not opinions, even noxious ones. For me, that thing about individuals controlling their own bodies? The only principle I would put above that is the right to control ones own mind, ones consciousness, etc. there's a reason why thoughtcrime is one of the darkest concepts Orwell came up with in 1984. And thought and speech are tightly, really irrevocably, linked.

On your first point: the normalization of cruelty, torture, the ideas that SOME people are objects for the pleasure of others. 1) are images really doing that? I mean, objectively, is the world crueller and more torture-friendly than it used to be? 100 years ago, lynching or public executions were considered wholesome weekend entertainment. And it's not clear that a) the presentation of these things "normalizes" them or b) that legislating against those images would impact either public perception OR the intended underlying message, namely that these behaviors are "okay". A big part of the reason the American public turned against the Vietnam War? Because they saw it - really saw it - on their television sets.

Even if one argues that, in the face of statistics (which show the world getting less violent and more tolerant, believe it or not)- say, just because our national conversation has gotten uglier in the past 18 months- are we really certain free access to media is to blame? Countries with high degrees of censorship- Saudi Arabia comes to mind- have very high levels of things like oppression, authoritarianism, repression of women, minorities, etc.

Here's another example: I'm gonna guess you're not a big Game of Thrones fan, but that's a good culturally relevant example. A couple seasons ago there was a storyline that involved a medium-level character who spent the entire season being tortured in an awful, and sometimes graphic way. Does that mean that the show itself was saying "yay torture"? No. It was telling a story, and drawing the character responsible for the torture as one of the series' biggest villains, while also bringing about sympathy for a character who had been growing continually more unsympathetic up to that point.

Now, some people want nothing to do with "Game of Thrones"- that's their right. I wouldn't recommend it for everybody.

I don't believe our society would be any better off if we outlawed it.

In many ways, the question is kind of like abortion- there are many people, many Democrats like Joe Biden or Nancy Pelosi, who express their personal opinion about abortion, their personal opposition to it- but what they're not doing is trying to outlaw it. There is a huge chasm between not liking things or even finding them reprehensible, and passing laws against them.

Now, on the topic of "violent porn"- porn is a topic which has been flogged countless times (excuse the pun) on DU, and I have no desire to reopen that can of worms, except to say that, as with the rest of this wider debate, condemning or not approving of something is far simpler than crafting a legally actionable definition of it. In one of DU's many porn threads, a statistic was bandied about saying "90% of all porn contains at least one act of violence"- shit, you say, that sounds terrible! Problem is, that study defined "acts of violence" as, among other things, spanking, say... or the insertion of a body part into the mouth of another.

One does not need to be an expert on human sexuality to see the problem with such a definition.

And then of course, you have varieties of human sexuality like BDSM, which many consenting adults enjoy- to define any porn where someone is tied up, for instance, as "violent"- you're xing off an area of sexuality that a lot of people don't have a problem with and enthusiastically consent to, etc as anyone who has been to the Folsom St. Fair can readily attest.

In short, some people might see a picture of a naked woman flogging a handcuffed, naked man and go "oh my, violent sex". Others might go "hey, look what Jim and Martha did for fun last weekend".

Which ties into a larger, inextricable point in all this- with "speech", you have the speech itself, the intent behind the speech, and the meaning perceived on the part of the person hearing or viewing the speech- all of which can be subjectively interpreted a number of different ways. Which is an interesting point from a semantic and human perception perspective, but makes writing laws about the whole thing really, pointlessly futile AFAIC.

Or else, any legal principles need to deal with objectively concrete legal ideas- "congress shall make no law", "consenting adults", that sort of thing.

I do not understand why it is somehow protected speech to blast these ideas out on public airwaves- i.e. the hate radio of Rush Limbaugh, etc


I think we could have a conversation about the fairness doctrine, that's no so much a censorship/1A question, but it's relevant. Of course public airwaves are less crucial to the discourse than they used to be, but it's a valid point. I have been unfortunate enough to be subjected to listening to el Rushbo more than once in my life, and far be it for me to defend that corpulent fuck, but I'm sure he and his listeners would go into overdrive explaining about how reasonable-sounding and "not hateful" his stuff is. Like I'm sure he would tell you that he's not on the air suggesting "beating up gay people". So passing laws against hate speech would likely have little effect on the shit he does.

Now, let me add that I come from a family of Jews that had people in Europe that went to the camps. When I see these fuckhats in Charlottesville talking about genocide and ovens, that's me, and more importantly my family, everyone I love most in the world- that they're talking about. Full stop.

I've been to Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. know what fascists can do to Jews. So this is not just some abstract philosophical point with no personal relevance to me. Just today I got a mailer from the Simon Weisenthal center that had marchers with swastikas chanting "Jews will not replace us" on the cover. I am DEEPLY distressed by the ugliness and hate that has been churned up by the last election.

But I firmly believe that the protections- specifically protection of dissent- inherent in having the 1st Amendment so central to our system of government, stand as one of our best protections against those people. I think that vastly outweighs any "benefit" we might obtain by censoring objectionable opinions. Letting them speak is not nearly as grave a threat as giving the government- any government- the power to outlaw ideas.

To me the reflexive impulse to go after free speech right now is like wanting to chop a hole in the bottom of the lifeboat, after the ship has sunk.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #101)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 01:13 PM

108. Thank you Warren, I am going to think about all that you wrote

over the next few days. I am not a quick thinker and I have a huge event celebrating/encouraging carbon sequestration on ranches and farms (I am an organic plant breeder/farmer/shepherd) that I am participating in tomorrow and must get ready for it.

So, I don't want you to think that I am not grateful for your timely and thoughtful response.



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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #101)

Tue Oct 3, 2017, 07:26 PM

121. Thanks Warren, I am back now and gave your excellent post a lot of thought

and I still cannot articulate my deep unease with the normalization of images and speech depicting and encouraging violence against people, even as a sort of fiction.

My fear is that in the years to come we will have another genocidal event and that this particular use of free speech will be used to incite the atrocities to commence.

Just fyi, 25 years ago I predicted a character like T's would become president because of the hate radio of Rush Limbaugh polluting the airwaves in rural areas, and all the emphasis on tv of glitzy houses of the rich and famous, etc. And the glamorization of bling and porn. Perhaps you will recall that for a good amount of time, in the '60's and '70's rich people felt obligated to be inclusive and the gap between executive pay and worker pay was much closer. And people were not so comfortable flaunting their richness. And media made a big effort to break the stereotypes of women who were incapable of doing anything that required intelligence or wisdom or strength of character. But that changed, and now here we are with people polarized financially, sexually, as well as politically.

I predicted T's win last summer, and I am sadly predicting much much worse. And yes you may be right about the chopping a hole in the bottom of the lifeboat, and I am most certainly in general way too sensitive ( and I pay a huge price for this by needing so much time spent in solitude), but it is how I feel, not how I think.

It is a strong feeling and it has not gone away, despite your absolutely sensible arguments above.

I don't want to be right about this. But I fear that the extremely intelligent people- which you clearly are- do not fully comprehend the effect of images on people for whom emotion or instinct play a more pivotal role in their perception of reality (I count myself in this group). This is the group that T (and the Russian hackers and the mass media, actually) have so masterfully played, and is still playing and this is the group that seems to have a lot more power than one would think. And that is why I am worried. These calls to violence and hate have just begun and this group once ignited will be hard to stop. And I think we are looking at 20 years until what is normalized now in our imaginations, becomes acceptable in action.

Again hoping that I am wrong and over reacting.








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Response to Tumbulu (Reply #40)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 08:50 AM

49. I don't mind vigorous debate on this topic, nor do I begrudge someone for holding a different

opinion than mine. However, when people are blatantly dishonest, such as accusing me of being anti First Amendment or calling for it to be abolished when I did no such thing, it becomes impossible to engage such deceitful people in further debate and taints how you read their comments. I simply don't suffer liars.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #49)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 09:18 AM

52. So State yourself clearly:

What hate speech laws would you like to see instituted without abolishing the First Amendment?

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Response to sarisataka (Reply #52)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 10:43 AM

58. I did state myself clearly.

Was my OP that ambiguous? Did I specifically call for the First Amendment to be discarded?

Incitement to riot is considered illegal under federal law, is it not. I certainly think spewing hate speech can be interpreted along similar lines.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #58)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 10:58 AM

59. And you really think it is a good idea to give Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III

the discretion to decide who gets charged and prosecuted for "hate speech"?

Interesting idea...to say the least...

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #58)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 11:46 AM

60. "Hate speech"

Is not clear.

Is it racial epithets, insults based on religion or sex, calling people deplorable, wearing a MAGA hat....
Outlawing "hate speech" without defining it is a can of snakes that will bite you

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #58)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 05:47 PM

70. You accuse people of misrepresentation, while you yourself do the same thing:

like here:

https://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=9608437

Oh, I see. So, that makes it okay to take what someone wrote out of context or to present their argument dishonestly, as just did in this post and in one below (unless, of course, you can show me specifically where I called for the abolition of the First Amendment, that is)?

The Republicans use this strategy to great effect to arrogantly and childishly dismiss arguments they don't like, or to simply be vitriolic a-holes. I'm not saying that's necessarily what you're doing here, but deliberate dishonesty is certainly a strange tactic to employ in the defense of free speech, isn't it?


which was in response to this:

https://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=9608323

'cuz this reflexive bullshit about going after the 1st Amendment as if THAT is somehow the problem is fucking tired.


So as you can see, no one claimed you 'called for the abolition of the 1st Amendment'. "going after" ≠ "abolish". However, there is no way on Eris's green Earth that one could implement these allegedly successful "European Hate Speech Laws" without some impact on the 1st Amendment. The reason we CAN'T have these wonderful "European style hate speech laws"? The 1st Amendment.

So, yes, that is "going after" the 1st Amendment, because the core of your argument here is that there is something wrong with the thing and it needs "fixing".

Incitement is ALREADY illegal, as we are continually reminded, so no legal changes should be necessary. What people don't seem to want to grok, however, is that "saying something that might make someone really mad", like drawing a blasphemous cartoon, doesn't count as "incitement".

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 08:58 AM

50. As Voltaire once said ...

"Fuck that! I don't think anyone should ever get locked up just for stupid shit they said."

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Response to dawg (Reply #50)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 12:16 PM

62. My favorite Voltaire quote!

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Response to dawg (Reply #50)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:38 PM

77. Seriously.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 09:12 AM

51. I'd like to task you with a thought exercise

Define, with objective terms, "hate speech" (and you don't get to say "like the Europeans"

Then, put on your contrarianism thinking cap on and see how/if your definition could work against you.

Then reflect upon your definition utilizing existing and landmark USSC decisions on the 1st Amendment paying particular attention to Stromberg v California, Near v Minnesota, One v Olsen, US v Obrien, Hustler v Falwell, NAACP v Alabama to name just a few

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Response to melm00se (Reply #51)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 09:33 AM

54. +100

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Response to melm00se (Reply #51)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 06:12 PM

72. Defined by title nine protections for state and federal elections, easy peasy

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Response to uponit7771 (Reply #72)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 07:05 AM

102. Tell that to the Supreme Court and the trans-gender community.

 

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 09:32 AM

53. Trump is making a lot of people propose dumb ideas

This one example.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 10:29 AM

57. It might help if people voted

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Tue Sep 19, 2017, 12:03 PM

61. I'm not a fan of criminalizing something that hasn't been defined

So how would the proponents of re-interpreting the Constitution to allow the government (federal, state, local) to criminalize "hate" speech" define exactly what is unlawful?

Would the GIF of Hillary being hit by a golf ball be unlawful?
Would Kathy Griffin face criminal charges somewhere in the US for her presidential "be-heading" image?
Would it be "hate speech" to label Repubs in general (or specific repubs) as "Nazis"?
Would DUers who mock and denigrate religious fundamentalists be guilty of hate speech?

I'd be interested in seeing some examples of what sort of speech people think should get someone locked up.

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Response to onenote (Reply #61)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 02:41 AM

83. blasphemy and nudity.

that's really what this is about.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 03:12 AM

86. Oregon's state constitution contains even stronger free speech protections than the 1st Amendment

by your logic, that should have caused us to elect Ted Nugent as Governor by now.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #86)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 12:09 PM

106. What protections does it contain?

 

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Response to NobodyHere (Reply #106)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 10:42 PM

109. Here you go:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Oregon

The right to free speech in Oregon is broader than the federal level:[8]

No law shall be passed restraining the free expression of opinion, or restricting the right to speak, write, or print freely on any subject whatever; but every person shall be responsible for the abuse of this right.
 Oregon Constitution, Art. I 8

In State v. Robertson,[9] the Oregon Supreme Court has cited this right against parts of Oregon's disorderly conduct statute, against content-based restrictions on billboards and murals, and against laws restricting the sale of pornography.[10] Later in 1987, the court cited this provision when it abolished the state's obscenity statute in State v. Henry.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Wed Sep 20, 2017, 06:35 AM

93. That is insane. I would not want to restrict speech...even speech I don't like.

I believe in free speech.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 09:33 AM

103. Our side should get to author what is hate speech.

If we go about it properly, the Right won't be able to say or pen one of their ideas without fear.

First we have to get complete power again...

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Response to ileus (Reply #103)

Fri Sep 22, 2017, 12:10 PM

107. I think you forgot the little sarcasm thingy (n/t)

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Response to jcmaine72 (Original post)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 04:27 PM

111. Frankly, it's easier just to ban the Republican Party

 

The reason is that it is an organization that exists to take in money for candidates. If the reason that the money is being taken in is for promoting values that are increasingly being criminalizing, hence denormalizing, within American culture, then it stands to reason that any organization that seeks to profit from said promotion of illegal values should be demonetized. Google, Facebook, and Twitter do it, so why not go ahead with the RICO suits? ALL of this is within the realm of the Constitution, just as long as we file in front of courts with majority progressive justices assigned.

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Response to Fluke a Snooker (Reply #111)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 06:44 PM

112. They certainly meet most if not all of the criteria laid out by the SPLC to designate them as a hate

group. Whether we'd ever muster the moral courage needed to finally have them officially labeled as such is another matter entirely.

Your idea of pursuing RICO charges against the rethug party is intriguing. They can certainly be nailed on such RICO predicates as obstruction of justice, fraud, acts of terrorism, etc. Again, unfortunately, we'd probably never be able to conjure up the moral courage needed to pursue such charges against them. Then again, the Mafia once seemed unassailable as well, so maybe there's still hope.

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Response to Fluke a Snooker (Reply #111)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 06:50 PM

113. What a disgusting totalitarian fantasy.

Such illiberal authoritarianism has no place in a community of democrats.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #113)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:02 PM

114. Why is it disgusting, totalitarian or illiberal to designate an organization that embraces

criminality as criminal? As I mentioned above, they also meet most if not all of the SPLC's criteria to define them as a hate group as well. Is it also a "disgusting fantasy" to simply state that obvious fact?

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #114)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:07 PM

115. no one's buying the act

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #115)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:15 PM

117. Yeah right. I refuse to engage you upthread because of the way you dishonestly portrayed my

posts, and now....what, you're accusing me putting on some act or other? You're some piece of work. If anyone is putting on an act here, it's you...and it stinks. In fact, you're a real scenery chewer, so please go find someone else to bait in your little traveling troll show.

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Response to jcmaine72 (Reply #117)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:27 PM

119. mm hmmm

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #119)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:42 PM

120. Sorry, but I think I have to block you now.

Life is too short to suffer childish, vituperative people.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #113)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:10 PM

116. I wouldn't mind if none was ever elected again, frankly. Why should I mind? For another murderous

 

"health-care" bill? Or denial of climate change? Or environmental havoc through drilling, fracking, and what have you? Or saber-rattling with NK, Iran, Venezuela, etc.? Or the US Treasury sent to the Koch brothers and the Mercers? Or another Ryan, McConnell, Mulvaney, Manafort, Bannon, Page, Miller, DeVos, ...? Or the closing of more Women's Health clinics?

BAH.

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Response to Fluke a Snooker (Reply #111)

Sat Sep 23, 2017, 07:19 PM

118. Why stop there? Imagine how great things would be if we just killed everyone who disagrees with us.

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