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AvatarComments by Stillwater in reply to Jaybird*

On “From Elizabeth Picciuto: The Real Free Speech Violations

Is making the trains run on time a progressive agenda item?

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If that's correct, doesn't it mitigate probably the biggest worry folks have of progressivism, namely, that's its ultimate goal is communist totalitarianism?

A corollary to that: again, if that's true, shouldn't libertarians like Swami be happy that progressives are leaning on private corporations as goal-achieving power-centers rather than the state?

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Just curious… would you say the business world has been “infiltrated” by folks with a profits-over-people ideology?

That gets pretty close to a worry I have with Swami's analysis: that at time 1 there is a baseline of social norms, practicesa and power structures and the change which exists at time 2 is the result of infiltration. There's a bias in the framing such that the type of institutional arrangements which exist at time 1 are irrelevant but the *changes* to those institutions, and howthey came about, deserve hyper-scrutiny. As an example, according to this view the abolitionist/anti-slavery movement in the US "infiltrated" our institutions, which implies something insidious occurred worthy of scorn and deeper analysis.

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But is that actually a core tenet of progressivism (as Swami's defined it) or a contingent fact about power dynamics on the left *right now*? Nothing in Swami's definition/description entails that, eg., progressives must/should/will align with corporate interests to achieve their goals, even instrumentally. Or am I still not understanding what this ideology actually is?

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Your comments make sense to me from a libertarian pov, so I'm curious if you agree largely the same critique, absent the particuloar ism-signifiers, applies to conservatism or, frankly, any political/cultural movement, Swami. Eg, 2, 3, and 4 strike me as fully general; 1 and 5 replaceable by every other isms objectives and goals.

More substantively, short of an argument demonstrating that the premises and conclusions of (what you identify as) progressivisms core beliefs and objectives are unsound, I'm not sure why you think it's *obviously* not only dangerous but false. Eg., it's true that social systems *are* based, at least in part, on power dynamics, so why is an ideology centered around remedying that fact problematic?

{{I don't want to get too far out on a limb here since I'm not sympathetic to much of what we in the US call "progressive politics".}

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Interesting comment. I'm not sure what it means, though. Could you define "progressivism" more precisely than "a particular secular faith-based world view based upon certain beliefs about human nature and power relationships and their cure"?

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But once it manifests into something coherent it's already too late, so you might as well not get upset *then* either. :)

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Doesn't help clarify, but thanks for the links.

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Seems categorically different to me, but what do I know.

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It's always hard to predict how Free Speech Absolutists will respond to speech-related attacks.

Charlie Hebdo? FSAs were 110% certain it was an attack on free speech.

Trump using the power of the IRS to go after liberal colleges tax exempt status to curtail their ability to "indoctrinate" students? Not an attack on free speech.

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I read an insightful comment that ICE declaring that foreign students' visas will be suspended if their school conducts classes remotely is an attempt to force those universities to hold in-person classes on campus. This threat strikes me as more of the same, Trump using a stick to get schools back open.

On “Do All Lives Matter?

I'd alternately ask why you think policing inner city violence entails abuse of force and unconstitutional over-policing?

Not sure why you're hung up on the racial element of this, though. If it's true, as you claim it is, that cops will be less likely to police black communities over criticisms that PDs and the CJ system in general are systemically racist, then it rather proves the point that cops act on a race-motivated (or race-incentivized, to use your language) basis. I mean, the one sure way for cops to *demonstrate* that they aren't racist, and that PDs engage in systemic racism, would be for the police to *not* engage in selective policing re: violent crime while concurrently *not* using unconstitutional lethal force and other types of over-policing.

I mean, your argument is that cops will respond to claims that they're racist by not policing (ie., doing their job in) black communities, which strikes me as pretty fucking racist, no?

On “From Elizabeth Picciuto: The Real Free Speech Violations

Did anyone sign both letters? Those are the folks we, as a society, need to hear from.

On “Thursday Throughput: Missing COVID Deaths Edition

Re; herd immunity:

But one recent study out of China, published in the journal Nature Medicine, suggests that the protective proteins may not stick around for long. The researchers concluded that antibody levels “start to decrease within two to three months” in people who recovered from a SARS-CoV-2 infection, especially for those who never developed symptoms.

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Well, the WHO and CDC/Dr Fauci recommending *against* mask wearing strikes me as a not-evidence based decision, in particular given the WHO's rationale for the advice. Early it was intended to protect PPE supplies for front line medical staff; later it was because masks would provide a false sense of security thereby inadvertently increasing spread. So the single easiest, most beneficial individual practice to ensure public safety was downplayed for non-evidence based reasons.

On “From Freddie deBoer: Ending the Charade

OK, so now that we’ve got a definition, what evidence is there that this censoriousness is more prevalent today than in previous eras?

Not sure I have the brain power to understand how cops writing stuff on a Starbuck's coffee cup is a form of canceling, but ...

if canceling is an expression of power to silence folks from expressing unwanted (not even necessarily uncomfortable) ideas, then it probably happens less today than in previous eras when women and blacks were silenced before they even spoke, shamed/scolded/shunned after.

On “Do All Lives Matter?

Swami, you're argument is, and has been since we first started discussing this issue, that BLM has politicized policing to the extent where cops *won't* police the inner city. If that's the case, then we need to fire the cops, not give them a free pass. I'm baffled that you think you have a coherent response to the pro-police reform proposals on the table since - again - all it consists of is *not* pissing off cops to the extent they unilaterally refuse to perform their tax-payer funded duties.

I apologize if that sounds a bit exasperated, but I guess that's where I'm at.

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Actually, that last bit isn't quite right. Rather, I'm asking you to see what you concede you do not see despite having *chosen* to live in a low-crime/good school neighborhood.

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I’m pointing out that I don’t see it, experience it, and can live perfectly fine without changing anything.

Exactly. Hence my asking you if the dysfunctional culture youi refer to isn't the *dominant* culture which ... has the highest incarceration rate in the world, has a legacy of slavery and Jim Crow, etc etc.

I'm asking you to *see* what you concede you do not see.

On “From Elizabeth Picciuto: The Real Free Speech Violations

I’m confused on what you think I’m defending. I was pointing out that we don’t, and shouldn’t excuse someone’s illegal behavior because of their culture.

*Ergo*, the only problem with inner city black culture, and the solution, is that those people need to obey *our* laws. QED.

On “Do All Lives Matter?

I'm super happy for you but that doesn't answer the question.

On “From NBC New York: Jeffrey Epstein Confidante Ghislaine Maxwell Arrested, Sources Say

"Since I was on the tightly controlled guest list I thought it improper to say anything at the time, but now that she's been arrested, and can't show up at any parties I'm invited to, I have some things to say."

On “From Elizabeth Picciuto: The Real Free Speech Violations

Free speech is how we determine what is toxic to the body as a whole.

I'm not sure I understand what you mean here (I mean, beyond the surface language) but this strikes me as wrong. Instead, it seems to me that free speech protections are historically and conventionally viewed as a mechanism to *prevent* toxicity from taking hold in the body.

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Dark, our criminal justice system is tasked with *this very thing*, yet you appear to defend it as legitimate as is, going so far as to say (on another thread) that "it’s on their culture to change to fit modern norms" or they get locked up.

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