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byronius

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Member since: Wed Feb 23, 2005, 03:32 PM
Number of posts: 6,621

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Karl Popper on Trumpism.

From The Open Society And Its Enemies by Karl Popper, 1945:

Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them. 

In this formulation, I do not imply, for instance, that we should always suppress the utterance of intolerant philosophies; as long as we can counter them by rational argument and keep them in check by public opinion, suppression would certainly be unwise.

But we should claim the right to suppress them if necessary even by force; for it may easily turn out that they are not prepared to meet us on the level of rational argument, but begin by denouncing all argument; they may forbid their followers to listen to rational argument, because it is deceptive, and teach them to answer arguments by the use of their fists or pistols. We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant.

We should claim that any movement preaching intolerance places itself outside the law. and we should consider incitement to intolerance and persecution as criminal, in the same way as we should consider incitement to murder, or to kidnapping, or to the revival of the slave trade, as criminal.


I find this passage quite moving at this moment in time.

Posted. Without. Comment.

The only thing worse than Donald Trump is Donald Trump tomorrow.

Ignore the spray and full throats. Ignore the projection and Gollum-speak.

Pull together. Show up. Try. Press forward.

Fucking win.

Trump supporter tries to turn Toastmaster Table Topic into a pro-Trump statement, gets pounded

by a new Guest Member, a young African American female who responded with grace, alacrity and truth under pressure.

I got talked into joining this club a few months ago. Don't need it. I was a double-ruby-with-distinction hired gun for a nationally ranked debate team, plus theater degree.

'Give back', was the argument from a coworker. Sigh. So, it's been all right. Fun, even. This one guy, though -- doesn't work in the building, lives with his mom, doesn't shower, one crazy eye and gives really dark speeches that let everyone know he's got Serious Problems -- gets to pick the Table Topics for this meeting. I've been friendly with him until now -- he seems to really like me for some reason.

He knows politics is verboten. Nonetheless -- the only questions offered are --

'Why are people so upset by Donald Trump's 4th of July celebration?" Twice for that one. And the kicker:

"You're in an alternate universe where you're a Trump supporter. Talk about why people should have loved Donald Trump's 4th of July celebration."

Three people were chosen. The first was a brand new guest, a young African American Lyft driver. She talked about the concentration camps, and asked why anyone would think it was all right to celebrate while children were being ripped from their parents. Everyone else in the room was nodding, but the Trump supporter took exception.

"We're so different in how we view things, I think that's all mischaracterized, blah blah" -- completely breaching the protocol of Toastmasters. The person running Table Topics isn't supposed to comment on anyone's response, not all all, ever.

The second person is a chemist who works in the building, basically the same response as the first person, eliciting yet another rebuttal from Troubly.

The third question -- the new president of the club took that one, and kind of punted just to get it over with. She was clearly embarrassed that anyone would hijack the meeting that way, but wanted to avoid a full blown confrontation. At the end of the meeting she reminded everyone of the rules concerning controversial political topics.

Troubly followed me out to the elevator. 'I'm Donald Trump's first fan, since the day I read his first book."

"He didn't write that book," I responded.

"He didn't?" Troubly was mystified by this.

I'm a pretty open-minded guy, used to be able to talk to Republicans quite freely before 12/11/2000. It's gotten harder and harder, and now I can't say a goddamned word without starting to immediately lose my temper. The word 'Nazi' just comes out of me, and I get serious fight-or-flight -- so no, not going to freak out at work and lose my job.

But it was a good window. This guy -- has a serious mental illness. If you told me he shot up a mall full of kids with an AR-15 I'd just nod my head. All he did with his rude little tactic was isolate himself and get the rest of us to bond.

It's getting down to the concentrated dark insanity. No one else can go down that road but the totally effing crazy unwashed basement-dwelling lunatics and the Devoted To Evil.

I don't have contact with these people often. But when I do, I get it.

Crazy, Evil, or both. No one else. A razor-sharp line. There is no gray area anymore, and there won't be again until everyone from my generation and my children's generation has passed on.

Sharp. As a razor.
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