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Russia, Gays, Nigeria, Blacks, Moral Infantilism, and the Search for a Cure.

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posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 02:48 PM
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reply to post by johnb
 

Dear johnb,

Great, thanks for the fresh perspective.

I'm going to have to hide behind the walls of my impregnable (so far) castle. Capitalism, sexual depravity, drug addiction are all evils, as are many kinds of modern music, thong swim suits on fat women in Wal-mart, lying politicians, MSNBC, and Donald Trump's hair. But all of those are cultural artifacts and not acts committed by a government against its citizens.

If Americans were being killed in large numbers (Think ethnic cleansing) by a government program, or if they were being denied all rights to speech, religion, press, voting, owning property, and free movement, then I would think foreign intervention in some form or another would be appropriate and good.

I would hope that the world would follow my proposed lead and say that for certain rare violations we will talk, then attack, for milder ones we will apply sanctions, but most we would ignore.

It may very well be that the US will not remain the world police. In fact, I expect that to occur. I hope, however, that somewhere in China or India they are having this same discussion and coming to similar conclusions.

I don't hold out the same hope for the UN that many brilliant posters here have shown. I have suggested, in a different thread, that we leave the UN and set up a "League of Free Nations" which would initially consist of perhaps 20-30 countries dedicated to the ideal of preserving and expanding freedom world-wide. Those countries would help each other, intervening if necessary, to create ever freer and stronger members. I would then expect that other nations would apply for membership. Thus, we would be establishing the culture that other countries would seek to emulate, rather than applying force to effect such a change. After all, that is the method posters here are striving for.

Wonderful contribution and valuable point of view, thanks.

With respect,
Charles1952




posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 03:27 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 

Dear Wildtimes,

Please don't worry about being succinct. Every word coming from your fingertips is a jewel of great price. (Ok, I might be a little overboard, but still. A number of great posters are gathering here for some reason, and I'm happy as a clam to see you all.)


"Reward" works far better than punishment.
Yet:

Throwing money at them will not really change their behavior. It will only "buy" compliance until such time as they no longer need it.
I think your position is that there exists some reward which is more effective than money. I'm not sure what that would be, and I'd be delighted to learn.


I feel that, as I said earlier, the ONLY WAY to achieve world-wide peace is by TALKING. Not by bombing, starving, or threatening.
Although, the Japanese and the Germans have been remarkably peaceful since the end of World War II.


Failing TALKING, then the next effective means would be complete ignoring. Global ostracization.
I like that, but I can't imagine a situation in which the entire world would unite on this. Islamic countries, China, Russia, any of the large countries would always find someone to talk with them. And if the ostracization you envision includes cutting off all trade, we have just introduced the concept of world-wide sanctions. I believe many would oppose that, and those that support it may claim that not all countries would cooperate. Some countries, such as China, might say "We can be self-sufficient for years. This also means you don't get the rare earths you need for technology. Remember? We have 98% of the world's supply."

And countries aren't individuals which can be hurt emotionally by a snub. Short of sanctions, countries would only see a small net finacial gain, as they don't have to send people all over the world for boring and expensive conferences.


Peace talks, diplomacy (REAL diplomacy, not spies posing as diplomats), and a hand-shake are FAR better tools for promoting cooperation.
I certainly agree that talk is far and away my first choice. Complete agreement with you. Sometimes, it doesn't seem to work. I think the Middle-East problem between Israel and it's neighbors has been going on for at least 60 years, and the talk in that time has been of monumental proportions, but war still could break out at any time.


In any case, it has occurred to me lately that there is really NOTHING to be done. That all of my efforts (writing being my only real talent for activism) are for naught. . . . We aren't the "model nation" any more - that is a matter of fact.

Is there a "model nation"? I don't know. Canada and Iceland seem to come close, though. I think.


Your feelings are yours to do with as you please, but I think you're being a little overly pessimistic. Although you're right, there is no model nation because nations are made up of people and it's been a very long time since a model person walked with us.

But allow me to offer four possibilities. You may reject two as immoral and the other two as excessively idealistic, but they're there for you to improve on if you see any potential.

In the worst case, where the friend you have snubbed as pulled a gun on you, you are justified in killing him. War remains an option, albeit an ugly and disgusting one.

Consider expanding your world-wide sanctions. Jam every bit of electronic communication they have, radio, TV, Internet. That coupled with ceasing trade and the movement of people to or from the country, might be significant. I know some countries will try to get around that wall. Could we station troops to turn back such attempts?

There is no ideal nation, but we can find ideal principles. Can we publish those to every citizen of the world saying "This is what you have a right to as a human being. Let us know, somehow, if it's not happening, and we'll try to help.

Finally, consider my idea of a "League of Free Nations" which I briefly described to johnb, above. I really like that one. It would not be made up of ideal countries, but it would include Canada and Iceland working for a common and noble ideal.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 03:54 PM
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Originally posted by charles1952
reply to post by tachyonmind
 

Dear tachyonmind,

I note that you are a relatively recent addition to the ATS (Family? Community? Mob?) and I'm glad you're here. Yours was a very solid contribution and really expanded my thinking.


the fundamental moral standard is the golden rule, and it is tied to the universal law of karma.
I wouldn't dare quibble, it would get in the way of your introduction of the golden rule. Let's consider that for just a moment

I know a man who was married, since divorced, who struggled with depression. His wife offered no understanding or assistance of any kind, even when he was performing self-destructive acts which could have easily resulted in his death and that of innocent others. He lived in a state which allowed for 72-hour psychiatric holds in the case of someone who was a danger to himself or others. In that case, wouldn't you want to be locked up for three days while an attempt was made to look for a solution to your madness?

In that case, I believe the golden rule would have allowed for, nay, required the use of force for the protection of his life and others'. Yet his wife mentioned the situation to no one, but failed to intervene to control his madness.


according to the golden rule, before judging her husband "mad" and running off to the men in white coats, this man's wife should be offering understanding and assistance, listening to her husband and keeping an open dialogue between them.. it's when people become scared of what they don't understand, (ie. self destructive depressive behaviour), that they clam up and look for the answers elsewhere.. be it in with doctors, law enforcement etc.. but the cure to depression is just like the cure for loneliness, it's being there with the people you love and actually talking to them..

funnily enough i have been myself, twice, locked up for "psychiatric reasons".. i found the whole ordeal completely unnecessary, but in my case it wasn't because i was danger to myself or others, it was because i was, according to the doctors, "talking like a crazy person".. the thing is noone actually talked to me, my family and friends just said, "uh oh he's lost it", they heard the words i was saying, but instead of trying to understand them, they decided medication and lockup was best, it wasn't..


I suspect the international situation may be similar. An individual government may appear which threatens suicide to the country and death to many innocents. Shall not force be applied to prevent that? Such application of force would be based on the idea that any government, when sane, would want to be stopped in those circumstances, an example of the golden rule.


actually, it would be far more beneficial to find out why this other government wants to cause harm, through open dialogue.. there is no such thing as ultimate hatred, only hatred of what is foreign and misunderstood as a threat to the local way of life.. in this case, more often than not, the motivation is ideological, which is very dangerous, but not above understanding if the governments and the citizens of both countries are prepared to talk to one other properly.. of course a country should defend itself from attack, but they should never pull such things as "pre-emptive strikes", and they should never pursue retribution, it only exacerbates the situation..



the golden rule stipulates all people must offer each other the same support and understanding they would expect to receive from others, regardless of race, sexuality, religion, or personal morality..
I almost completely agree with this. I would modify it slightly by saying we should all work for the betterment and advancement of others, as we hope they would work to help us. I think love is the desire, and help to achieve, the very highest good for someone else.

Again, fine post, and I hope to see more of you.

With respect,
Charles1952



i agree, although how do you define the "highest good"? it is subjective.. you could give a beggar $50, but what would he do with it? would it be a higher good to buy that beggar $50 worth of food? take him home and give him a shower and clean clothes? teach him how to do multiplication and get him a job?

the highest good is more often than not dictated by personal circumstance and perspective, the only true good is patience and tolerance, empathy and understanding, and the only way to really make a positive difference in the world is to lead by example and if others' find your actions to be objectionable, to find out why and either change your behaviour or reach a compromise with your frienemies..

=)


edit on 1-8-2013 by tachyonmind because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 07:18 AM
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reply to post by charles1952
 



In the worst case, where the friend you have snubbed as pulled a gun on you, you are justified in killing him. War remains an option, albeit an ugly and disgusting one.

Consider expanding your world-wide sanctions. Jam every bit of electronic communication they have, radio, TV, Internet. That coupled with ceasing trade and the movement of people to or from the country, might be significant. I know some countries will try to get around that wall. Could we station troops to turn back such attempts?

There is no ideal nation, but we can find ideal principles. Can we publish those to every citizen of the world saying "This is what you have a right to as a human being. Let us know, somehow, if it's not happening, and we'll try to help.

Finally, consider my idea of a "League of Free Nations" which I briefly described to johnb, above. I really like that one. It would not be made up of ideal countries, but it would include Canada and Iceland working for a common and noble ideal.

Good morning, charles! Thanks for this thoughtful response. I am happy to give up my pessimism - it's only recently born. Normally I'm optimistic and think "no way they'd let that happen." But, in light of the fact that just today news says that USA wants to tell other countries to stop trading with Iran ...

meanwhile Iran's new president is saying Israel has got to go - that it's existence is a "wound" on the Muslim world...

And the USA is threatening to stop trading with countries who continue to do business with Iran....

and seeing as there are military bases ALL OVER THE PLANET now - WW3 is imminent, it seems....

all this posturing and authoritarianism is really troubling.

The "basic human rights" thing is a great idea - and I believe that's what peacemakers are trying to do - meanwhile Malala gets shot in the face, Saudi Arabia is giving a dissident 600 lashes he might well not survive for "insulting Islam" (which was the Taliban's 'written explanation' to Malala)......

Yes, if my snubbed former friend pulled a gun on me, it would cause me to have to use force to defend myself. Good point.

Apparently "world-wide sanctions" will not work, so that's my bad -- idealism.

I like the suggestion of a "League of Free Nations" - I'll go look at your post to johnb and follow up with you.


(This really IS a great thread, good group!)



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 07:28 AM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Oh, and add to the list of very recent events:
Snowden getting asylum in Russia, and the US planning to close mid-east embassies on Sunday due to intelligence concerns that Al-Qaeda is up to something......

things aren't looking so great.


I don't know if the world will survive another World War. There's also a member who says he works in a department in the UK that has been told to "not give survival advice to civilians in the event of war" - does that mean the elites want as many people dead as possible?

Very disturbing, indeed.

As for the LFN (your brainchild) - isn't that what 'the West' effectively is? So, isn't that what the UN is supposed to be about? You are wanting to leave out the un-free nations and branch off to Free Nations vs Un-free Nations?

That would be better than war.....
but somehow I doubt the 'shadow government' would allow it - it seems they want war instead.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 01:09 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 

Dear wildtimes,

You restore my faith in humanity. Now if we can get appointed to high level government positions, we could straighten this world out. Have you got any influence with Hillary or Barack?

You have reason for your pessimism, unfortunately. I think a solution is not impossible, but it won't be easy, and it won't happen by luck. We'll need some key governments which don't have power, money, or re-election as their highest goals. (And we know how hard it will be to get that.)

While I'm not trying to start a partisan fight, it seems that in the US very few politicians claim to have overriding principles, and those that do seem to be the ones who hold the Constitution as their highest good. They might be the ones most willing to accept Peace and Freedom as overriding principles as well.


That would be better than war.....
but somehow I doubt the 'shadow government' would allow it - it seems they want war instead.
(Well, then, "Butter my buns and call me a biscuit." I don't know what that means, but I heard it somewhere and have always wanted to use it.) If there really is "another" government which is calling the shots (metaphorically and literally) and they want war, I really have little idea of how to proceed. I'd have to think about that for a long time to even get a beginning on what to do.

The news you bring about world events is very disturbing. Add to that our Secretary of Defense's comments that if our military can't get some funding restored, they won't be able to perform their traditional mission of fighting two wars at the same time with the most modern weapons.

But does that mean world war, or is it just setting the stage for American surrender to threats? As you mention, Russia insults us over Snowden and we have no reply. Afghanistan, which Obama called the war we should be fighting, is returning to Taliban control as we give up and leave. After 60+ years, we're alternating between telling the Mid-East parties to talk nicely, and telling them we'll think about stopping their trade. Both with the same result, more hatred and tension. Those things and others make me think there will not be a world war under this President. Maybe a world surrender, but not a world war.

The LFN would not necessarily be the West. Certainly there would be the North American and European countries which you would expect, but I'd also include the following:
Andorra, Bahamas, Barbados, Cape Verde, Chile, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Dominica, Estonia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and Grenadines, San Marino, Uruguay.
All of which are elected democracies having the highest possible rating from Freedom House, a respected source for this kind of information.

The LFN wouldn't care about the size of the member country or it's location. In a sense it would be a "fan club," organized around a love of freedom and human rights. The UN allows nearly anyone in, with any goal. So countries hating the idea of human rights end up chairing the Human Rights Commission. Israel lovers and haters shout at each other for years, with no common ground to build on.

I envision a group where each member country is given tremendous respect becuse it made the brave and difficult decision to make freedom its goal. Each member would support the others with trade, special immigration rights, and an understanding that the group would defend a threatened member. But each country would be free to say, "Hey, US, what do you think you're doing with this latest policy? We're supposed to be about freedom, right? Shape up or you're out of here. You'll have to rejoin the UN, and the world will laugh at you for being kicked out of the League of Free Nations."

I would want freedom to be a blessing, not just because it is a good thing in itself, but because it is beneficial in trade and protection. Perhaps LFN peace-keepers would be more effective and respected than those of the UN.

And because all members would start from a position of disliking war and hating crimes against humanity, they could agree to move more quickly than the UN, stopping trouble early.

But, if there's a world-wide controlling power that wants war in the next year, that's pretty much it, isn't it?

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Aug, 3 2013 @ 12:05 PM
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reply to post by charles1952
 

Dear charles,
I just noticed this post - and I'm now too brain-weary to respond to it. You'll forgive me, I know, for letting me mull over your post.

While philosophy and psychology are two of my favorite topics, I find (sadly) that I'm frequently unable to contribute much here, due to all the heady folks who hang out here....

but, I will respond.

For now, I'm going outside to read about

A Deadly Misunderstanding: A congressman's quest to bridge the Muslim-Christian divide

- that I picked up on the library 'discards' shelf (
) for a buck (yep, ONE DOLLAR) the other day.
2008, written by a former Congressman - and it talks about how Islam and Christianity fell into this chaos by way of mistranslations.

I'm just so tired of the violence-begotten violence....and the 'finger-pointing'. Everyone blames everyone else for "atrocities", and just keep perpetuating them REACTIVELY, when what we need is PROactive responses,

NOT

MORE

WAR.



Mr. Siljander builds a compelling case that any faithful reading of religion and its teachings should serve to unite, not divide. --H.E. Ban Ki Moon
Secretary General of the United Nations

"A book of enormous courage and spiritual power ... essential reading for every Christian, Muslim and Jew of good will around the world.
- The Washington Times

Funny how it pulls in the U.N.....for our purposes. Check out the site - there are links and vids and so forth and so on. ANOTHER in an "accidental" find of my recent reads.

The most recent before this was stumbling across

The Evolution of God

in the grocery slashed-price bin last year. Both very much worthwhile, very timely, and VERY RECENT titles. Highly recommend them both.
edit on 3-8-2013 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 3 2013 @ 12:59 PM
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First let me say that this is certainly not a black and white issue.

Radical interventionist policies can backfire and lead to wars. Some issues are simply not worth the trouble intervention would bring with itself, or not worth it at all.

On the other hand, nobody can deny that in cases of widespread human rights abuses forced intervention is just. International law recognizes this too. If someone says that some lines on a map or cultural differences justify widespread human rights abuses, then that is truly a morally infantile position..


In this case, when gays are given long jail terms, I agree with military intervention in principle. But in practice I think it often would do more damage than good. So I think we must find other, peaceful means to stop it.



posted on Aug, 3 2013 @ 03:44 PM
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reply to post by Maslo
 

Dear Maslo,

Wonderful post, thank you. I wish I had your gift for brevity.


First let me say that this is certainly not a black and white issue.

Radical interventionist policies can backfire and lead to wars. Some issues are simply not worth the trouble intervention would bring with itself, or not worth it at all.
Absolutely right. I'm hoping, through discussion with people like you and wildtimes, that we can form a reasonable framework for resolving these issues.

Earlier in the thread: www.abovetopsecret.com...

I listed some violations which I thought we could ignore, some that might justify sanctions, and the very few which might justify war. If the US, or the world, could agree on something similar it might alleviate the pressure of crowds screaming for the world to support their particular "Cause of the Day."


On the other hand, nobody can deny that in cases of widespread human rights abuses forced intervention is just. International law recognizes this too. If someone says that some lines on a map or cultural differences justify widespread human rights abuses, then that is truly a morally infantile position..
But many of the posters in this thread would deny it. We haven't even reached the point, in this thread, where there is 100% agreement on using force to prevent genocide.


In this case, when gays are given long jail terms, I agree with military intervention in principle. But in practice I think it often would do more damage than good. So I think we must find other, peaceful means to stop it.
I think it is a good and useful discussion to determine which violations deserve which kind of punishment. I'm not yet persuaded that war to preserve Gay rights is the best approach, perhaps sanctions as a first step? Or maybe we could ignore it?

In any event, I really like the idea of peaceful, intermediate steps employed to stop human rights violations.

Thanks for stopping by.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Aug, 5 2013 @ 01:09 PM
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Where there are countries that amass great arms, there will always be war. If a nation like America or England said, "We will not go to war at any price. We are getting rid of all munitions," the example would be so great that there would be no glory from a nation that would try to take them over. There would be no war.

I came across this statement on a site that contains recorded messages from Dr Flint's work -
it was from Andre, from the other side.

I'm sorry guys, but I won't stop believing that if we stopped the violence - like Les Mis said - the example would spread across the globe.

www.adcguides.com...
Oh, also:

I did discover through further "background checking" that the author of "A Deadly Misunerstanding" - the former Congressman, was indicted in 2008 for 'collusion' with "bad guys" - still, his book has good information on bridging the divide.
edit on 5-8-2013 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



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