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Thread: Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

  1. #1
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

    We need this thread so we are not always in the Trump thread!

    Here we have the California Legislature, as always, focusing on the really important issues here in the Golden State:

    Proposal to restrict plastic straws keeps California in national spotlight on environment

    California is poised to become the first state to restrict the distribution of plastic straws at restaurants under a bill approved Thursday by lawmakers, capturing the attention of environmentalists nationwide who hope the idea, like many with origins in the Golden State, will spread across the nation.The legislation, which would prohibit full-service, dine-in restaurants from offering plastic straws to customers unless they are requested, passed on a 45-20 vote by the Assembly and now goes to Gov. Jerry Brown for his signature....


    http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-p...23-story.html#

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  2. #2
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    Sadly, it would have minimal impact.

    https://www.nationalgeographic.com/m...rce=reddit.com

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by U-Ute View Post
    Sadly, it would have minimal impact.

    https://www.nationalgeographic.com/m...rce=reddit.com

    You have to start somewhere


    The Wall Street JournalVerified account @WSJ 10h10 hours ago

    Kroger plans to eliminate plastic shopping bags—of which it distributes six billion a year—from all stores by 2025

  4. #4
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by U-Ute View Post
    Sadly, it would have minimal impact.

    https://www.nationalgeographic.com/m...rce=reddit.com
    We don't care about that out here on the left coast. Virtue-signalling is more important than results! Our legislature here is the upside-down version of Utah's.

    (Anyone catch the Stranger Things reference?)

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  5. #5
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by concerned View Post
    You have to start somewhere


    The Wall Street JournalVerified account @WSJ 10h10 hours ago

    Kroger plans to eliminate plastic shopping bags—of which it distributes six billion a year—from all stores by 2025
    Their drawn-out deadline exemplifies the foot-dragging that is typical of the running dog lackeys of Wall Street.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  6. #6
    Brilliant!

    "It'd be nice to please everyone but I thought it would be more interesting to have a point of view." -- Oscar Levant

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by USS Utah View Post
    Brilliant!

    I didn't take the time to listen to most of what Sasse said, but in regards to Congress doing its job as laid out in the Constituition, what was his position on giving the Garland nomination a hearing and vote?

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Irving Washington View Post
    I didn't take the time to listen to most of what Sasse said, but in regards to Congress doing its job as laid out in the Constituition, what was his position on giving the Garland nomination a hearing and vote?
    What did you find out when you Googled it?
    "It'd be nice to please everyone but I thought it would be more interesting to have a point of view." -- Oscar Levant

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by USS Utah View Post
    What did you find out when you Googled it?
    Didn't, but since you mentioned it, here's something https://thewayofimprovement.com/2018...rrick-garland/

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Irving Washington View Post
    Didn't, but since you mentioned it, here's something https://thewayofimprovement.com/2018...rrick-garland/
    Once again, never fall in love with a politician.
    "It'd be nice to please everyone but I thought it would be more interesting to have a point of view." -- Oscar Levant

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by USS Utah View Post
    Once again, never fall in love with a politician.
    Hero's die hard.

  12. #12
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

    The Senate had no constitutional duty to act on the Garland nomination. It wasn’t pretty, but what they did was a matter of pure power politics. No one can seriously doubt that the Democrats, if the situation were reversed, would have done the same thing.
    Last edited by LA Ute; 09-09-2018 at 09:03 AM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    The Senate had no constitutional duty to act on the Garland nomination. It wasn’t pretty, but what they did was a matter of pure power politics. No one can seriously doubt that the Democrats, if the situation were reversed, would have done the same thing.
    No one can seriously doubt? I must be irreparably biased, because before last year I would never consider the possibility. Dems would do a Bork, which started the whole nasty partisan crap, and Orrin developed into an art form.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    The Senate had no constitutional duty to act on the Garland nomination. It wasn’t pretty, but what they did was a matter of pure power politics. No one can seriously doubt that the Democrats, if the situation were reversed, would have done the same thing.
    So in Article II, Section 2, the term "shall" applies to the President, but not the Senate? "By and with" does not require the Senate to act but precludes the President from appointing with no action? What would the current Originalists on the Court do with that interpretation? How would the Marbury v Madison Court rule on that interpretation?

  15. #15
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

    Quote Originally Posted by Irving Washington View Post
    So in Article II, Section 2, the term "shall" applies to the President, but not the Senate? "By and with" does not require the Senate to act but precludes the President from appointing with no action? What would the current Originalists on the Court do with that interpretation? How would the Marbury v Madison Court rule on that interpretation?
    If the tables had been turned I would have been angry too. Depends on which political side you’re on, because it was an exercise of political power. Even Glenn Kessler, the WaPo fact checker, sees history and precedent slightly favoring the GOP on this one:

    Does the Senate have a constitutional responsibility to consider a Supreme Court nomination?

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.9efb187685f3

    As I’ve said before, I think the SCOTUS has become far too important.
    Last edited by LA Ute; 09-09-2018 at 04:59 PM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    If the tables had been turned I would have been angry too. Depends on which political side you’re on, because it was an exercise of political power. Even Glenn Kessler, the WaPo fact checker, sees history and precedent slightly favoring the GOP on this one:

    Does the Senate have a constitutional responsibility to consider a Supreme Court nomination?

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.9efb187685f3

    As I’ve said before, I think the SCOTUS has become far too important.
    I wonder if legal scholars have weighed in on the Senate's duties. The fact that the Senate has done it in the past is not a compelling legal argument. It's about as compelling as if Obama appointed him and said if the Senate has no obligation to act then it's consent isnt required.
    If the SCOTUS said there was a duty to act, then we wouldn't have filibusters on any nominees for any judicial positions or candidates waiting for years to be considered. A better world, if you ask me. But now we have a recent precedent for inaction far into the future.
    By the way, the nomination of a moderate Garland was a pretty bipartisan act (even if calculated as the only way to get approval. Isn't that what bipartisanship is all about?)

  17. #17
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

    Quote Originally Posted by Irving Washington View Post
    I wonder if legal scholars have weighed in on the Senate's duties. The fact that the Senate has done it in the past is not a compelling legal argument. It's about as compelling as if Obama appointed him and said if the Senate has no obligation to act then it's consent isnt required.
    If the SCOTUS said there was a duty to act, then we wouldn't have filibusters on any nominees for any judicial positions or candidates waiting for years to be considered. A better world, if you ask me. But now we have a recent precedent for inaction far into the future.
    By the way, the nomination of a moderate Garland was a pretty bipartisan act (even if calculated as the only way to get approval. Isn't that what bipartisanship is all about?)
    One law prof’s take:

    Why the Senate Doesn't Have to Act on Merrick Garland's Nomination

    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics...ominee/482733/

    Another:

    Again on the erroneous argument that the Senate has a ‘constitutional duty’ to consider a Supreme Court nominee

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.0c8a8ca4399c

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  18. #18
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    I’m posting this is a public service for my liberal and conservative friends.

    Liberals Don't Know Much About Conservative History
    And both sides suffer for it.


    https://www.politico.com/magazine/st...history-219742

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  19. #19
    Malleus Cougarorum Solon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I’m posting this is a public service for my liberal and conservative friends.

    Liberals Don't Know Much About Conservative History
    And both sides suffer for it.


    https://www.politico.com/magazine/st...history-219742

    I'm a moderate - middle-of-the-road non-activist (but very interested) voter who was generally considered conservative when I lived in Pennsylvania, and liberal when I lived in Utah.

    Lately, I am impressed by the Conservative emphasis on institutions - churches, military, families, whatever - as important for community-building. In a weird way, the liberal point-of-view has come to idealize individualism while the conservative one seems to focus on the importance of community. (this is not an original idea by me - I've been reading it all summer from the usual outlets)

    I feel like I'm taking crazy-pills when the Left is telling me that as an educated, cis-gender, white male I'll never truly understand a different point-of-view, and the Right is inviting me to help build a village to raise our children. Down is now Up, I guess.

    Make your case, Conservatives. You can probably talk me into making some questionable decisions
    σοφῷ ἀνδρὶ Ἑλλὰς πάντα.
    -- Flavius Philostratus, Life of Apollonius 1.35.2.

  20. #20
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Here’s another one for you, Solon:

    An Age Divided by Sex
    The Kavanaugh nightmare shows how the competing moralisms of conservatism and feminism are tearing us apart.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/29/o...servatism.html

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  21. #21
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Here's something new and interesting, via the Brookings Institution:

    A global tipping point: Half the world is now middle class or wealthier

    https://www.brookings.edu/blog/futur...-or-wealthier/

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  22. #22
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Stop Apologizing for Our History


    Excerpt:

    But, of course, we cannot come together as one nation so long as we engage in the foolish exercise of savaging our civilizational history. Good-faith conversations about American history recognize the multifaceted moral nature of human existence: the fact that George Washington was a slaveholder does not render his status as father of the country moot; the fact that Abraham Lincoln spent most of his career advocating for colonization of black Americans in Africa rather than their full integration into American life does not obliterate Lincoln’s role as the Great Emancipator. Human beings are products of their time — and they are capable of holding viewpoints that resonate down through the ages and the prejudices of their own age. Undoubtedly, a century from now, few will look kindly at even the most broadminded Americans’ views on a variety of issues.

    But the process of civilizational development requires us to separate the wheat from the chaff — and to celebrate the wheat....

    The war on the history of the West isn’t merely a difference of opinion, to be glossed over with a few words about bipartisanship. America is divided right now between two groups: those who believe that America and the West are fundamentally good and worth fighting for, despite their myriad historic shortcomings; and those who believe that America and the West are fundamentally evil and racist, steeped in structural power imbalances. A house divided against itself cannot stand; those who care for their homes cannot declare unity with arsonists.
    Last edited by LA Ute; 10-10-2018 at 01:04 PM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I read this, and thought "who could possibly cook up this irrationally narrow prism and label those who remind us of the bad parts of the past as "arsonists"?".

    Oh yeah, Ben Shapiro.

    But this article is thought provoking: https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/...-isnt-all-bad/

    Essentially, all the rancor surrounding Kavanaugh indicates our elected leaders are paying attention to a very highly engaged populous. Democracy at work. Interesting take.

  24. #24
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    I read this, and thought "who could possibly cook up this irrationally narrow prism and label those who remind us of the bad parts of the past as "arsonists"?".

    Oh yeah, Ben Shapiro.

    But this article is thought provoking: https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/...-isnt-all-bad/

    Essentially, all the rancor surrounding Kavanaugh indicates our elected leaders are paying attention to a very highly engaged populous. Democracy at work. Interesting take.
    I think you’re throwing out the baby with a tiny bit of bath water. Shapiro’s hard to take sometimes but the “arsonist” bit was just a figure of speech. The parts I quoted were his good points. For example:

    Good-faith conversations about American history recognize the multifaceted moral nature of human existence: the fact that George Washington was a slaveholder does not render his status as father of the country moot; the fact that Abraham Lincoln spent most of his career advocating for colonization of black Americans in Africa rather than their full integration into American life does not obliterate Lincoln’s role as the Great Emancipator. Human beings are products of their time — and they are capable of holding viewpoints that resonate down through the ages and the prejudices of their own age. Undoubtedly, a century from now, few will look kindly at even the most broadminded Americans’ views on a variety of issues.

    But the process of civilizational development requires us to separate the wheat from the chaff — and to celebrate the wheat.
    What’s to disagree with there?

    The J.J. McCullough piece you link closed with this:

    If you don’t like how the Kavanaugh process went down, in short, the prescription is obvious: America needs less political journalism, fewer citizen activists, an unelected Senate, ideologically arbitrary political parties, and a more politically oblivious public.
    I liked the piece, which I found thought-provoking, but I think the above is a silly bit of reductive thinking. Awful, IMO. I’m not a teacher but if he were a student in my composition class I’d give him an F and make him re-write his piece.
    Last edited by LA Ute; 10-11-2018 at 03:41 AM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I think you’re throwing out the baby with a tiny bit of bath water. Shapiro’s hard to take sometimes but the “arsonist” bit was just a figure of speech. The parts I quoted were his good points.
    In my interactions with people from more diverse backgrounds (I wouldn't have had if I wasn't connected with my wife) I've had conversations with folks who focus on Founders owning slaves, States Rights people looking the other way as Jim Crow happened, and now BLM, and conclude the entire system has been rotten from Day 1.

    Drawing in the bigger context, acknowledging history and reality, I point out the progress made. Women aren't property anymore, they can vote. Blacks have made enormous strides in terms of rights and opportunities, with tons of role models to look to.

    Are where we need to be? Of course not. Is the Klan back? Well, some are, it was clearly on TV. But every day, in every interaction with people, you can make a difference, for yourself and your kids.

    In my interactions with other cultures - African American, Native American, Latino, Poly - a stereotype of white people sometimes emerges. "Watch your wallet!" "Smooth talkers, you'll end up with less, they end up with more". In Hawai'i the conquering of the islands was from "missionaries, then merchants, and finally the Marines". Etc.

    Two of my sons worked a very short time in door to door security sales in Texas a couple of summers ago. My sons were coveted because they could open doors in the hood with their appearances. But the whole thing was extremely scammy, and the A-holes running this thing were bragging about fleecing the stupid people in the hood (I've sanitized the language), even around my sons, because "you two aren't really black".

    After a week, I flew my kids home, proud of them for confronting the predators & getting out of that sleazy operation. "Lesson learned: There are people and parts of America to avoid. Do what YOU can to dispel lingering racism, and don't let it defeat you".

    Shapiro's approach is confrontation & contrast, pumping up a specific view within his tribe. I've had better results acknowledging the past & current issues, but emphasizing progress and pointing to a brighter, achievable future.


    Here's the nut I'm having a harder time cracking - our economic system increasingly rewards not effort, but results. In the Information Age, this is the sequel to "Revenge of the Nerds", but the results are dramatically different economic outcomes (salaries & wealth), based on noodle power.

    In WWII, in the Space Race, we as a people could embrace and support our "best and brightest", as it meant success as a nation from a specific threat from other nations. Today if I bring in a "free agent", an IT version of Kevin Durrant, the salary discrepancy is tough for those who've been loyal, been working their butts off, really good people.

    The Space Race and WWII were won, they were tangible targets to achieve and celebrate. The drive for organizations to excel today - or at least not be left behind - means salary competition for the "best and brightest", and there's no end in sight. It's an ongoing, corrosive mix.

    The real irony is a large segment of Trump's base are at heart good people, "steady Eddies", who are looking for him to create equality of outcome... for them. Hence the rhetoric against Amazon, "trade wars are good and easy to win", etc. The enemy often isn't another country - it's our fellow Americans.
    Last edited by Ma'ake; 10-11-2018 at 07:49 AM.

  26. #26
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    I don't know if this is true or not, but it doesn't take much imagination to believe that it is true.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...rce=reddit.com

    Donald Trump has reportedly tried to fire John Kelly, but failed because the White House chief of staff “just ignores him”.

    The president wants rid of the former Marine Corps general but “doesn’t know who to call to fire him” as Mr Kelly himself usually carries out his sackings, according to an administration staffer.
    “I think the president just doesn’t know who to call to fire him,” the administration official told New York. “Normally if the president wanted to fire somebody, he would call Kelly to do it. But there’s nobody else to call.”

  27. #27
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    In my interactions with people from more diverse backgrounds (I wouldn't have had if I wasn't connected with my wife) I've had conversations with folks who focus on Founders owning slaves, States Rights people looking the other way as Jim Crow happened, and now BLM, and conclude the entire system has been rotten from Day 1.

    Drawing in the bigger context, acknowledging history and reality, I point out the progress made. Women aren't property anymore, they can vote. Blacks have made enormous strides in terms of rights and opportunities, with tons of role models to look to.

    Are where we need to be? Of course not. Is the Klan back? Well, some are, it was clearly on TV. But every day, in every interaction with people, you can make a difference, for yourself and your kids.

    In my interactions with other cultures - African American, Native American, Latino, Poly - a stereotype of white people sometimes emerges. "Watch your wallet!" "Smooth talkers, you'll end up with less, they end up with more". In Hawai'i the conquering of the islands was from "missionaries, then merchants, and finally the Marines". Etc.

    Two of my sons worked a very short time in door to door security sales in Texas a couple of summers ago. My sons were coveted because they could open doors in the hood with their appearances. But the whole thing was extremely scammy, and the A-holes running this thing were bragging about fleecing the stupid people in the hood (I've sanitized the language), even around my sons, because "you two aren't really black".

    After a week, I flew my kids home, proud of them for confronting the predators & getting out of that sleazy operation. "Lesson learned: There are people and parts of America to avoid. Do what YOU can to dispel lingering racism, and don't let it defeat you".

    Shapiro's approach is confrontation & contrast, pumping up a specific view within his tribe. I've had better results acknowledging the past & current issues, but emphasizing progress and pointing to a brighter, achievable future.


    Here's the nut I'm having a harder time cracking - our economic system increasingly rewards not effort, but results. In the Information Age, this is the sequel to "Revenge of the Nerds", but the results are dramatically different economic outcomes (salaries & wealth), based on noodle power.

    In WWII, in the Space Race, we as a people could embrace and support our "best and brightest", as it meant success as a nation from a specific threat from other nations. Today if I bring in a "free agent", an IT version of Kevin Durrant, the salary discrepancy is tough for those who've been loyal, been working their butts off, really good people.

    The Space Race and WWII were won, they were tangible targets to achieve and celebrate. The drive for organizations to excel today - or at least not be left behind - means salary competition for the "best and brightest", and there's no end in sight. It's an ongoing, corrosive mix.

    The real irony is a large segment of Trump's base are at heart good people, "steady Eddies", who are looking for him to create equality of outcome... for them. Hence the rhetoric against Amazon, "trade wars are good and easy to win", etc. The enemy often isn't another country - it's our fellow Americans.
    You’re describing a lot of the chaff, and it’s pretty depressing chaff. But it is the chaff. Washington was a great man, despite the chaff in his life (owning slaves). Same with Lincoln, TR, FDR, JFK, Reagan. We’d all be worse off today without them. On the other hand, Confederate heroes are mostly chaff, IMO. Any statues of them belong in museums. And so on. America is a great country with many warts. The beauty of our nation is that it is based on a great, aspirational idea (see the Declaration of Independence), and it is capable of changing and improving, and of moving ever closer to fulfilling its potential and living up to that idea. Saying the USA and its history are awful misses the point of our existence as a nation.

    Deposit $.02!

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by U-Ute View Post
    I don't know if this is true or not, but it doesn't take much imagination to believe that it is true.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...rce=reddit.com
    Doesn't make too much sense, but comical to imagine anyway. I love the notion of having a list of accomplishments to give out to people.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I think you’re throwing out the baby with a tiny bit of bath water. Shapiro’s hard to take sometimes but the “arsonist” bit was just a figure of speech. The parts I quoted were his good points. For example:



    What’s to disagree with there?

    The J.J. McCullough piece you link closed with this:



    I liked the piece, which I found thought-provoking, but I think the above is a silly bit of reductive thinking. Awful, IMO. I’m not a teacher but if he were a student in my composition class I’d give him an F and make him re-write his piece.
    I guess I should read both articles, and maybe I'll get around to it, but my gut response is that while self-flagellation is harmful, and we need to remember all of the good, you at least have to acknowledge all of those negatives and understand how they may affect our current thinking. Too many people won't even acknowledge those dark parts of the past, and consider you unpatriotic if you do.

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Irving Washington View Post
    I guess I should read both articles, and maybe I'll get around to it, but my gut response is that while self-flagellation is harmful, and we need to remember all of the good, you at least have to acknowledge all of those negatives and understand how they may affect our current thinking. Too many people won't even acknowledge those dark parts of the past, and consider you unpatriotic if you do.
    Totally agree. I have no problem reading and acknowledging the ugly parts of the past. We're human beings, some crazy stuff has happened. But as LA pointed out, the ideals we've aspired to are enlightened, and through some tough spots, we've emerged in a better place. Truman integrated the military, got a lot of pushback in doing so, but look what that has done, for everyone involved.

    Even with our warts, the US has been the leader of the world (overall) in many different ways. The downtrodden, those looking to escape tyranny & persecution, have come here and added to our mosaic. DeToqueville and France saw it, gave us a massive statue that epitomizes the ideals we espouse with our acceptance of immigrants. (Cue Neil Diamond's "Coming to America")

    For some reason, some folks struggle with dealing with nuance and ambiguity. You're either great, or you're crap, and there can be no blending.

    But like the filmroom for a football team, I think you have to deal with reality and nuance, what actually happened. THEN you can figure out how best to move forward, better informed, striving to avoid mistakes and building upward.

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