Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Who Turned My Blue State Red

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This topic doesn't interest me so here is a link to an article that got a lot of attention from left leaning bloggers / media:   Who Turned My Blue State Red?  And here is one of the more interesting commentaries on the article / problem:  Quiet Desperation and American Fascism 
I am not sure why I shared it because I currently find conservative views very tiresome, so don't bother to read or comment.
 And Jerry's response:
Laurie, I read your "blue state red" item with great interest. Thank you. It's interesting how the liberal mind works, claiming that people who get government benefits should elect liberals who "provide" them (by stealing from the better off), rather than the conservatives who believe as they do that people should be responsible for themselves, "make their own way," etc. to the degree possible, and that private charity can do the rest. (Time and again, conservatives are proven more charitable.) And what kind of cynicism must be in play for liberals to WANT people taking government benefits just to "buy votes"? How about helping people OUT of poverty and into human dignity?
The author seems puzzled by the fact that those of lesser means seem to be the most disaffected about government, and that anti-government candidates fare so well. It's the same problem. Both sides of the divide see a government that is not solving the problems, and not listening to the people. When, regardless of the votes, government continues on its own way, democracy fails. And why shouldn't it?
Remember the famous Ben Franklin quote? Asked, after the Constitutional Convention finished, what kind of government had been created, he said, "A Republic, if you can keep it." We are not a democracy, nor should we be. The great red/blue divide is plain for all to see in the names of our two parties-- the Republican and Democrat parties.


John said...

Excellent Quotes:
"At least when she got her tuition help, she said, she had to keep up her grades. “When you’re getting assistance, there should be hoops to jump through so that you’re paying a price for your behavior,” she said. “What’s wrong with that?”"

"In Pineville, W.Va., in the state’s deeply depressed southern end, I watched in 2013 as a discussion with Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat, quickly turned from gun control to the area’s reliance on government benefits, its high rate of opiate addiction, and whether people on assistance should be tested for drugs. Playing to the room, Senator Manchin declared, “If you’re on a public check, you should be subjected to a random check.”"

Laurie, I don't think you understand how blatant the abuse of our systems are, and the bad incentives they provide. I still these videos described the issues perfectly.

Pelosi Welfare Video
Pelosi Red Neck Video

jerrye92002 said...

John, I'm just not willing to blame welfare recipients for the entirety of their behavior choices. For those who have been "in the system" for many years or even generations it can be hard to see and perhaps harder to "correct," but the fundamental problem is the one-size-fits-all rules and worse, the perverse incentives. If you were designing a system to increase the number of people in poverty and keep them there, it would be hard to do better than what we have.

Compare that with private charity, where people with drug problems are denied help until they are willing to change, where people who refuse to look for work are replaced with those who are. The biggest difference is that each individual case is treated as a distinct human being, and the caring help tailored to that person. Government simply cannot do it, certainly not under the current "model." And so long as liberals in government insist on that model as a means of buying votes rather than actually helping people, so long as they have power it won't change.

John said...

Personally I blame the religious right for a lot of the problem. Because neither charity nor welfare will let kids pay for the stupidity and irresponsible actions of their parents.

I think mandatory sex education should start early for every child in every school. And I think long acting birth control and condoms should be readily available and free to every citizen whether their parents support it or not. I would even be happy to use tax dollars to pay for first trimester abortions.

The key to closing the achievement gap and stopping generational poverty is to convince bad / unprepared parents to not have kids. And to make it easy for them to do so.

Anonymous said...

"I think mandatory sex education should start early for every child in every school. And I think long acting birth control and condoms should be readily available and free to every citizen whether their parents support it or not. I would even be happy to use tax dollars to pay for first trimester abortions."

I know you've said all of this in the past, but to see it in one place...I'm amazed how much we agree with each other on this point.


jerrye92002 said...

And I think that the Almighty State should keep its amorality to itself and not contradict the values of the parents, who should not be forced to pay for that indoctrination. It's amazing how much this statement agrees with the eugenicists, Margaret Sanger, and György Lukács.

Anonymous said...

Fine, jerry...then parents should make the decisions for their own families only, and should not band together with other people to lobby the government to enforce their backward sexual morality on other citizens.

I love how so many conservatives are more than happy to use the government to control behaviors they don't agree with. "Insane hypocrites" is the language I use to describe such people.


jerrye92002 said...

No, Joel, you are forgetting that "traditional morality" is that espoused by the vast majority. It is the prevailing social contract and will find its force in social norms as well as common and written law. Prostitution is illegal. Sex with a minor is illegal. Should schools be teaching that these illegal things are OK? If a few parents have "other" values on sexuality, I see no reason why their "morality" should be demeaned, but neither should it be taught in the schools as normal or desirable.

And the big problem is that having the schools teach sex ed just doesn't work. First of all, you have Authority Figures presenting the material. Whatever is said is taken as what the Parents agree with, and it cannot be true. More importantly, perhaps, is that these children have no discernment. Tell them "Don't have sex until you're married, but if you have sex anyway, use a condom." Guess which part of that "sensible" statement gets heard, and which part doesn't even make it past the inner ear?

Anonymous said...

Funny you should immediately change the subject to prostitution and sex with minors. Why did you change the argument?

Sex ed doesn't work because busy-bodies like yourself don't want real, tangible, scientific information to be discussed. "Don't have sex until you're married..." is an appeal to religion, which CANNOT work for many people, and may not work for the majority of people...and until recently, didn't work at all for people of minority sexual orientation. You don't want people to have all of the information. You don't want the government educating our children. You're just woefully out of touch with reality. Scientific, fact-based sex education MUST be the ONLY way for it to be taught...and EVERY child must be taught it. Only then can your dangerous views be countered.


John said...

"the Almighty State should keep its amorality to itself and not contradict the values of the parents, who should not be forced to pay for that indoctrination."

It is the Parents who are not doing their job, and therefore transferring the costs of their failure to society. How else would you explain the massive number of single Mothers? If their Parents were being responsible Parents these women would not be single and on welfare, and their Grand kids would not be failing in school.

When will you choose to hold irresponible and/or incapable Parents accountable? By their actions, a large portion of our citizens have shown themselves to be needing a governmental "Jimmy the Cricket".

Also, I do agree with you that social norms are determined by the society. And in our case the government and laws are determined by our society. You may call some actions amoral, however the reality is that our society is becoming open to them. And now you are in the "fundamentalist" minority. Bummer...

John said...

I am happy to give them the tools and support. However I also want to ramp up the negative consequences for irresponsible behavior...

Meaning that having children is a privelage, not a right. If you don't have the capability or discipline to raise them well, you should not be allowed to make them, keep them and/or screw them up. They are too important!!!

jerrye92002 said...

"Meaning that having children is a privelage, not a right."

Pretty hard to distinguish what we call a "right" to sex from the "privilege" of having children. Talk about government control! Eugenics defined by government regulation? No Republicans may have kids? Or just no Democrats?

I wonder what part of Joel's "scientific" sex education would convey to the raging hormones of youth that sex carries such responsibilities and consequences? When I said government was "amoral" I meant exactly that. It is an artificial construct of society that has no moral standards, only laws. But there are aspects of sex that have (sometimes severe) psychological, physical, economic and societal consequences that are most easily resolved within a moral framework. That "traditional morality" that so many are scornful of today exists for a reason.

jerrye92002 said...

Joel, I'm not changing the argument in the least. You indicated that laws which dictated sexual morality were somehow wrong. I pointed out to you two ways in which such laws were considered good from a "scientific" basis, prohibiting activities which have been found "not good" for society, by that society. Would you argue that children should be taught to disobey the law? Would you have them taught to disobey their parents?

jerrye92002 said...

"You don't want the government educating our children. You're just woefully out of touch with reality. Scientific, fact-based sex education MUST be the ONLY way for it to be taught...and EVERY child must be taught it. Only then can your dangerous views be countered."

I DO want the government (or somebody) educating our children. Right now government is failing miserably to do so. That makes me IN touch with the reality of public education. "scientific.... sex ed" is nearly impossible because government schools WILL transmit values along with it. Those can be the amoral government values, or some attempt can be made to respect the values of the parents and the society, or those values can be more or less deliberately presented. The worst choice is the "fact-based" valueless approach. It's like conducting a firearms course without teaching safety. "Just the facts, here is how you pull the trigger..."

Make you a deal. If your public schools are going to "counter" my "dangerous views" then I shouldn't have to pay for it, should I?

Anonymous said...

jerry, you changed the subject from sex ed and birth control to prostitution and sex with minors. Now, YOU may think those are linked, but that would be quite the stretch.

And how about the government teaches it's amoral sex ed (scientific) and parents teach the morals they want to? Why do you insist that the majority morality is necessarily the best one? Abstinence only education fails miserably, because it doesn't deal in reality.

Yes, of course, you shouldn't have to pay for scientific facts being taught to your children. And then our society is stuck with children who are ignorant of science, think that the earth is 6000 years old, that evolution isn't real, and that CO2 doesn't contribute to a greenhouse effect. Science is so dangerous. Sorry, but you and your ilk will not drag this country into the another dark age...if I have anything to say about it.

Your firearms analogy is inept, at best. How to use the safety features of a firearm is part of the fact-based firearm education. No morality play needed.


jerrye92002 said...

What part of "scientific" sex ed tells kids that there are serious psychological, physical, emotional risks to sex? Who is going to tell them that there is no such thing as "safe sex"? That's scientific fact, isn't it?

In the firearm analogy, you can teach gun safety to the degree that there are "facts" about how to avoid shooting yourself or another person. Where is it taught that you should not WANT to do that?

Your concerns for the coming dark ages is touching, but woefully misplaced. You seem to think that science and ethics/morality are mutually exclusive, and that is the most dangerous view possible. Let's try a little thought experiment. Would you prefer that the world spend $70 Trillion on /trying/ to prevent global "climate change" or spend $7 Trillion to eliminate world poverty? Or spend nothing but be prepared to spend up to $7 Trillion adapting to global warming IF AND WHEN it occurs, spent by a more prosperous world? Is there a moral component to this choice, all based in scientific reality?

Which science do you prefer, someone who knows CO2 is a greenhouse gas but recognizes that only 3% of it is "manmade," or somebody who believes, with no scientific evidence, that manmade CO2 will directly cause a catastrophe 100 years from now?

Anonymous said...

Sex ed: Why would a scientific approach not evaluate the risks and educate about them? The failure rate of "safe sex" also has a scientific basis. I wonder why you're making my point for me.

Firearms: 1)self-preservation (instinctual desire to not kill yourself), 2)we have laws against murder and manslaughter, and people typically don't like to accidentally kill their friends and family

Science/morality: "You seem to think that science and ethics/morality are mutually exclusive,"

And you seem to think that my view on these topics extends to all topics.

Climate change: If you don't spend the money now to combat climate change, your $7 Trillion dollar figure will balloon. Don't forget that a climate change-enhanced drought exacerbated the events in Syria.

Climate change, part duh: I'll go with the scientists who study these things. They are essentially unanimous on the human impact.


jerrye92002 said...

We have "laws" against murder? Gee, did that perhaps derive from the religious and moral precept of "Thou shalt not kill"? Then why, with those laws PLUS all the gun laws we have, do we still have mass shootings occasionally, or one per day in places like Chicago or D.C.? It can't be a failure of law. It must be a failure of morality. I don't care how much "science" you throw at kids, unless you ground them in something internal (and maybe eternal)-- some value system-- they're going to incur some consequences.

The "failure rate of 'safe sex'" is NOT taught and cannot be. It's not a scientific certainty that 5 of every 100 teen sex encounters results in pregnancy, or an STD, or some degree of emotional or psychological harm. Instead, abstinence has been shown to be 100% effective in every case; THAT is the science. That it coincides with a moral approach is reassuring to me and somehow troublesome to you.

"Certain sulfa drugs have been found highly effective against sexual disease, pregnancy and remorse; they are sulfa-control, sulfa-denial and sulfa-respect."

And I'm trying to help you with the climate change issue, I really am. The $70T and $7T ARE the studied scientific estimates for prevention and for mitigation, respectively. The other difference is that prevention wastes money unless you know the exact nature, magnitude, cause and effect of the problem, and mitigation doesn't cost anything until the problem manifests and then treats only that part of the problem. If you want to go with the "scientists who study these things," fine. They are nearly unanimous that the human impact is minimal. Their totally bogus models (wrong by their own admission) predict that the Kyoto treaty, had it been followed (which it was NOT, the US came closest) would have reduced temperature rise only about 10% below the computer-generated estimate for "doing nothing." The "skeptics," who are the REAL 97%, think it may be a bit lower even than that. You know, I predict a very snowy winter in 2024. Are you going to go buy a snowblower? What makes my prediction of the weather 10 years hence have any more validity than some computer model of the weather 100 years from now, when neither of us has any ability to predict out to next week?

Anonymous said...

"some value system"

Which does not need to be religious. It can be secular. But you'd rather impose your religious beliefs on everyone else.

"Instead, abstinence has been shown to be 100% effective in every case."

Except when it's not practiced. But again, you're only interested in your dogma, not getting people to be 'safe'.

"when neither of us has any ability to predict out to next week?"

Proving you don't know the difference between weather and climate does not help your case.


jerrye92002 said...

"Which does not need to be religious. It can be secular. But you'd rather impose your religious beliefs on everyone else."

Not bad, Joel. You got two out of three sentences correct. So why did you need the third one? And is it a lie, or just an ad hominem attack?

"Except when it's not practiced. But again, you're only interested in your dogma, not getting people to be 'safe'."

Nope, you're back to 50% right, at best. The first should be obvious, that abstinence 'not practiced' is not abstinence. The second is a lie or a slander, you pick.

I know exactly what I'm talking about. The models operate on, essentially, an "integration" of local weather, in effect synthesizing a global result. They do so using hundreds of assumptions about how weather/climate works, and are no better than a SWAG-- a Scientific Wild-Eyed Guess. It's obvious and proven and admitted that the models are wrong. The only thing holding this together is the great amount of political power and money available in keeping this hoax (for fun or power) and scam (for money) alive.

Anonymous said...

If you were interested in people being 'safe', you wouldn't have trotted out the abstinence-only nonsense. Abstinence works. Abstinence-only education has been shown to NOT work. I'm for teaching the facts. Abstinence can be taught alongside all of the other things we know, including the emotional, physical, and psychological issues that you brought up. Arm people with information. You can't make them follow your dogma, so why wouldn't you want to them to know as much as possible?

All of your climate change denial is answered at the skeptical science website. Educate yourself. Your belief in conspiracy theories is duly noted.


jerrye92002 said...

You seem very anxious to ascribe to me things I never said and intentions that mark me as a "bad person." The first is an error, the latter is an affront. I never SAID abstinence only in education, only that some positive values-- the values of prevailing society and of common sense-- must be conveyed along with the "cold scientific facts." That would lead to the "abstinence plus" that many schools teach. I don't think you can argue that "just the facts" sex education has worked, either. Sure, if you pound the kids with the terror of AIDS or the other "scientific" drawbacks to premature sex, you can get them to use a condom (all too often incorrectly) but you don't stop them from having sex because you haven't given them a positive reason to avoid it, through some inner value system. Yes, that can be secular, but I don't see much in secular society that discourages "if it feels good, do it"; quite the opposite. And lastly, I maintain my objection to just "giving them all the information." If you tell kids "if you have sex, use a condom and you'll be safe," what will they think? That maybe sex should be avoided, condom or otherwise? No. Or tell them, "if you're not having sex, don't start, but if you do have sex, use a condom," which HALF of that message will they hear? Or, let me accuse you for a change. Are you really TRYING to get kids to have as much sex as possible, by getting them interested in the subject early as if it were simple math?

Now let me take you at your word that you're only interested in the facts. What FACTS-- not some appeal to authority or "97%" attempt at logrolling, but actual, currently observable FACTS-- would lead to the inescapable conclusion that human-generated CO2 will almost certainly create a global catastrophe 100 years from now? Go ahead. The answer must be simple, right?

Anonymous said...

We seem to be talking past each other. I want people to be armed with all of the available information. If you don't, fine, but I will never agree with you. If you do, great, we agree.

100 years from now? It is already causing widespread catastrophe. But, for the sake of argument, let's say that it isn't happening now. Why do you want to take chances with your grandchildren's future? Do you think they'll appreciate your inaction, or hate you for it?

It's also illuminating that you don't think the world's brightest minds know what they're doing.