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PostPosted: Thu Nov 06, 2014 3:02 pm
by Oskar
The election results were disgusting--the unions here in Wisconsin backed an overtly pro-business candidate, and wonder why she didn't defeat the incumbent. Meanwhile, back home, the press is vilifying the train drivers strike. Why am I still in Milwaukee? I think it's time to go home. And, hey, my boss would like to see me in person, too.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 08, 2014 3:01 pm
by Ethan
If we want the Democrats to win races we need two things - more genuine liberalism and more money.

Or a hell of a lot more of one or the other, at least.

I have a lot of impractical ideas about both, but nothing my experience says is likely to function. Ethan ideas, not Qing ideas.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 08, 2014 4:59 pm
by Alexander
I suspect it's not a case of Oskar wanting the Democrats to win races so much as being sickened by the thought of the Republicans not losing them. But perhaps I am projecting what my own attitude would be if I was there.

Anyway the major US parties may both be authoritarian, paternalistic, corporatist, and generally disinterested in 99% of the people, but at least there actually are two parties in conflict, which suggests a lack of absolute tyranny if nothing better than that. The existence of a legitimate opposition (however objectionable their politics) is beyond the reach of most nations today; I'd say perhaps 15% or 20% of the countries of the world permit opposing views to be stated without repression, and mine, sadly, is not one of them.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 08, 2014 6:36 pm
by Oskar
Certainly, Alex, I agree that the neither the US nor Germany are tyrannies. I fear they are both moving in that direction. I'm thinking I can do more good back home.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 08, 2014 7:25 pm
by Alexander
I'm afraid I have to agree with you. It's almost as if they are deliberate anti-incrementalists, making things a little bit worse whenever they can. But really that is the usual path of the ruling class, to take whatever they can, in however small a bite is offered at the time, and never to give anything back.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2014 1:53 pm
by Jesse
Maybe we should be working on subtle changes to the public schooling systems, introducing more training on logical evaluation, as well as things like analyzing and understanding emotional arguments?

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2014 1:57 pm
by Jesse
In the shorter term, I think the US could use another third party rising up and challenging the big two. Not really expecting it to gather enough momentum to oust more than a seat or three here and there, but I think the important thing is to shake things up a bit more. The party would have to be something with broader appeal, seen to be neutral and standing for balance and common sense and things like that. Anyone have some work already done along those lines?

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:05 pm
by Ethan
Sure, everything I did with Occupy. just try convincing the general populace that's actually what that was.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2014 11:03 pm
by Alexander
If you'll forgive the pomposity of this opinion, it doesn't seem on the face of it that there is much scope for Incrementalist action on the large scale here, as the political pattern appears too deeply established and there is no key individual or small group for which a subtle influence is likely to accomplish all that much.

This is not to say that the ordinary overt forms of political organization and action are worthless -- indeed they are worthwhile even when they fail to gain power -- it's just that Incrementalist technique does require some sort of traction for its best effect. The Occupy movement was a worthy effort, but now that the US economy is not in an obvious downward spiral anymore it seems unlikely to regain the momentum it had at the depths of the recession. The appropriate political response to a defeat at the polls is not an obstinate insistence on continuing the same course as before, but a retreat and reorganization with a view to a new long-term focus.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 10:44 am
by Phil
Alex: I agree. I think what we discussed on another topic, small meddling with the press to get slightly more honest coverage of events, is the most significant thing we can do right now. Of course, I agree with Jess as well: improvements in education, like investments in infrastructure, always pay off.