Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Gonk, Nov 29, 2010.
On the internet where everyone can see them?
You can see the intellectual giants that are at work in this country.
Obviously the theft was a failure of government in the first place, I don't believe I've suggested otherwise. And just like in the Muslim world where there are plenty of Taliban sympathizers who consider those who murder innocent civilians in the name of religious ideology and retribution for failures of a nation's foreign policy to be heroes, right here you have a clear demonstration of those in this country who cheer the attack on the very idea of diplomacy and the real individuals around the world who work every day to protect and defend this nation and those who try to help us.
No we don't need to "blame" the Taliban for our failure, but that doesn't mean they are without guilt and aren't deserving of condemnation. Those who support them and think they are heroes serving a noble cause are also our enemy. Wikileaks is an enemy of the United States and those Americans who support it deserve nothing but scorn and criticism.
There is a place for whistleblowing, but not anarchy.
It's not nihilism to hate your country. In fact, nihilism is the absence of any sort of religious or morality or that life is meaningless. I believe we give our own lives meaning and not to believe blindly in a cause, a nation, or a person. See, where your little buzzword fails is that?.hum?you used it in a stupid and meaningless way. Guess I am a nihilist when it comes to your ability to use buzzwords correctly. I believe the word you're looking for is 'cynical' not nihilist which is a whole other area of things. And yes, I'll cop to being a cynic at times, but generally an optimist. It generally depends on the subject.
See, I hate the people within my country. For every intelligent decision there are at least 90 wrong-headed decisions being made. So it's fairly easy to despise the people and still like your country. And thank you for proving exactly what I hate about the 'Merican mentality: Love it or leave it.
Shucks, with such lofty options as that I guess I can only bow down and love country. E I E I Derp. With a derpy derp here and a derpy derp there. No wonder the US is sinking--we have such *****y salesmen and women trying to sell the idea of United States Supremacy in the form of 'love it or leave it.' No words of encouragement. Nothing. Hey, Backwords, you're not helping!
We now return you to your regularly scheduled reply:
As I was saying, my dislike for this country comes in the form of a general dislike for the people and the people that those jackasses elect. I'm saying we deserve all sorts of embarrassment for that. And that includes our diplomatic corps being outed as a high-class gossip magazine.
Really? 'Go somewhere else' is your answer? See: the two paragraphs before this. Again, bad salesmanship. Plus it defines the attitude I hate about my own country these days. On the plus side I could start my own cult, marry lots of women, and take my followers money. Hmm?.as for the wikileaks crap, I think the whole thing's been blown out of proportion to what was actually released. But I applaud those who risk their reputations and lives to release the info. It just adds a few more cracks to the system.
How are you any different than the talking heads on Foxnews? You can't even get the correct buzzword. It's 'cynic'. Not 'nihilist'. I don't go around fake kidnapping people and then demanding money from rich old guys. I don't wear all black. Or speak with a German accent. Of course I am adding those bits for levity, but really?nihilist? Do you even know what that word means or do you have a thesaurus on your desk with certain words highlighted?
I'm not here to be a salesman for America. If you want that watch [link=http://www.pbs.org/now/politics/romero.html#]this interview. [/link]
Any human society or community can only be maintained if an individual maintains a bond between his fellow man. I called you a nihilist because your ideology is devoid of meaning as it has no objective other than destruction. If you have other goals, then explain how destruction furthers them. A cynic would have an objective and just find that it isn't possible to reach. In the end I find neither word fits, instead I would use parasite. America is an idea, and that is idea is basically that the individual and society have the capacity for change and improvement. I'm not telling you to leave if you don't like a particular policy, but if all you can do is become filled with hate and rage and do nothing to try and improve society to only delight in its destruction, you are an enemy of this nation and the very idea of America. Yet you hypocritically take advantage of the society you hate by living here fulfilling your own needs and wants. What I'm advocating isn't that you follow right or left political ideologies, but that you develop a concept of civic duty, and if you aren't able to do that here it would be better for you and for us if you found some place you could. And part of what makes this country so great is that we allow people like you who wish for the destruction of the nation with no care of the consequences to talk as long as you don't act.
I've left the country, and know there is in fact plenty of people who are happy so when I tell you to leave, it is out of a sincere desire that you find happiness, because it is obvious it isn't working out for you here. You may not be able to reform all of society, but if you developed empathy and a care for your fellow man, there is plenty for you to do where you live now and around the world. Perhaps you wouldn't be so bitter if you tried harder to find ways to help others rather than entertaining yourself. Odd that you would respond to a society that is obsessed with getting the next cheap thrill by getting cheap thrills out of its destruction. If you can't beat em, join em type thing?
I think the greatest danger to any society is that an ideology overrides man's affinity with mankind.
Smaller paragraphs please. All that's just gibberish as far as I'm concerned. Cheers!
Esp, you've got to be kidding. How can you tell by FID's Senate posts whether he has a "concept of civic duty." Those things are determined by what people actually do in their communities, not what they say anonymously online. You have absolutely zero insight into that.
I'm the most pessimistic person I know, but I still act as though civic life were important, because it actually is important. I believe in the value of volunteering for and contributing to community charities, I believe in alleviating suffering where possible. People work, they pay taxes, the participate in community life, and I think that's a lot more important than whether or not they find fault with the U.S.
One of the things we lack as a culture is enough internal critics. We are perhaps the least self-reflective society on the planet. Our smugness about our manifest destiny and unparalleled greatness has become an Achilles heel that more likely than not will have catastrophic consequences for us in our ability to deal with a changing future. WikiLeaks reflects that. It is a chronicle of our diminishing influence and our inability to contend with it.
As our relative economic position in the world declines, a third of the population is going to stick their collective heads up their collective butts and chant "but God is on our side, but God is on our side." Unfortunately, the sound will be so muffled by all those sphincters and the roar of the rest of the world laughing at us that God is not going to hear a thing.
Overt anti-Americanism on the far left discredits liberalism in general, in the eyes of the electorate. Patriotism and American exceptionalism is a winning strategy for Republicans, and it has been for decades now. The "God is on our side, City on a Hill" rhetoric can go a bit too far, but it works. Overt bashing of the nation does not produce a productive response, nor does it advance a productive or feasible course of action. It is counterproductive in convincing ideological opponents. And it obviously plays into the hands of political opponents.
There was a time when American exceptionalism was somewhat rooted in reality. That was several decades ago when our share of the global economic pie and our political hegemony hit a high mark. Increasingly though there's a disconnect between the rhetoric and what is going on in the world. voters will have to catch on eventually so that domestic and foreign policy can contend with reality.
-China is fast becoming the world's largest economy.
-We have taken on the Soviets in Afghanistan problem in not just one but two countries, but our political institutions are too weak to let us cut our losses as resolutely as the Soviets did.
-Our Israeli/Palestinian policy is revealed again and again as a complete sham. It is virtually impossible to be anything utter than resolutely cynical about our interest in influencing -Israel to solve that lingering, multigenerational disaster. It is such an amazing source of cognitive dissonance that American religious leaders have even written this travesty into Christian doctrine.
-We are bleeding resources by military overcommitment even in places around the world where we aren't fighting wars.
-Our government is no longer solvent. Our state governments are even less solvent.
-Our citizens are not solvent either. We are going to spend the next decade deleveraging from massive unsustainable state and consumer debt. By the time this process is over, by the time we can return the nation to fiscal health, the Chinese economy will be twice the size of ours and we will be a junior partner on the world's stage.
We've had seven straight years of humiliating lessons in the fundamental limits of American power and influence. It seems to me this unfolding reality is writ large in the WikiLeaks documents too, and we desperately need to work through it publicly as a nation rather than pretend it isn't happening.
It's not anti-Americanism. I love America as a concept; it's just that most of the people within this nation suck. Especially the piece of crap politicians that are elected.
We're going to look at 2000-2010 as the decade when the epicenter of world civilization fundamentally shifted from west to east and China took the reins of global commerce from U.S. markets. This coming decade will be known as the decade when military and geopolitical reality started to catch up with economic reality.
No country or individual is beyond criticism.
I am confused by this leak regarding defence of the Baltic region. Does America still think the USSR exists?
Why does Poland need more protection from a nation the US has now said it wants to be friends with?
Has Russia made any indications it wants to conquer Poland and other Eastern European nations as it did during the Cold War?
It's going to be hard to take anything an allied nation says seriously if they're secretly bulding stronger defenses on your border because they worry about you attacking.
"a public discussion of contingency planning would also likely lead to an unnecessary increase in NATO-Russian tensions."
Looks like the secret cables got that part right.
In any case, it seems to me that Russia's efforts to reassert hegemony over some of the FSU states would be reason enough to keep contingency plans for a war with Russia. Russia's war with Georgia became a fairly salient presidential campaign issue in 2008, or at least I think I remember McCain and Obama debating about it.
No country or individual is beyond criticism.
There is a difference between criticism and eternal condemnation.
American exceptionalism existed long before we were a world power and can continue a long time after. It just depends on what you believe is exceptional about America.
I think it is a civic duty to not work or support the wanton destruction of our ability to make peace. Those who look on with glee at the destruction of our diplomacy are warmongers. We have interests just like everyone else, and the removal of the peaceful means of meeting those interests doesn't make those interest go away, it forces them into avenues that don't require friends.
Ability to make peace?
All I seem to see is America's ability to make war.
Two ongoing Middle-Eastern wars, wars against "Communism" that didn't work out very well, and an ongoing Israel crisis that has not had a peaceful resolution and doesn't look likely to get one any time soon.
Add that to the fact that now a defense barrier is being built against a supposed ally on the off-chance they might attack another country (sounds like Cold War paranoia lingers).
Pardon me for not being optimistic, but where is this peace exactly?
There are a lot of countries in the world and you are taking an myopic view of them if you can only see the negatives. Look at what the leaks say about Guinea. Underhanded yes, but effective with the end result being positive.
If it wasn't for diplomacy we would have gone into Iran long ago. Even though others want us to go to war and we have interests in doing so, we felt there were other options available to us. You take away those other options, you increase the likelyhood for war.
When you attack the means of effecting diplomacy you are not weakening the military power of the nation, you are weakening the ability to talk and pursuade others. You see what you want to see, but we aren't jumping into every conflict we can.
I don't think anyone disagrees with you. States need to be able to withhold information from each other in order to conduct diplomacy. A fully transparent flow of information between diplomats and between government and the public might impede or endanger diplomatic solutions.
The Baltic defense issue is a perfect example. Our diplomacy with the Baltic states was aided by a shared defense plan with those countries. One of the important jobs of military organizations like NATO is to plan for military contingencies. Yet it does no good to peace and diplomacy in the region to air this necessary evil in public.
Therefore, the government should do a better job protecting its sensitive information from harmful disclosures.
It looks like hackers have brought down the websites of Visa and Mastercard. and some Swiss bank (in defense of WikiLeaks).
How much damage can hackers do, if they really wanted to?
I don't think we've ever seen anything like this situation before. People have been talking about the upcoming "cyber-wars" since I was a kid, since the mid-1990's at least. I think we've finally seen the start of them, and I don't think they're going to go away.
I'm also afraid this will lead to one of those "Internet security" bills (that occassionally pop up) actually getting passed.
[link=http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-11947721]NASA Shuttle computer data released[/link]....because NASA sold shuttle PCs without removing the data first
That, and as long as Cheney did business with Saddam Hussein, the Right has no right (no pun intended) to call anyone anti-American.
Also, as far as the Right is concerned, racism doesn't exist except as a way for black people to complain about America and it stops them from being flag-waving patriotic Americans. Naturally, this means that it's perfectly okay to use the anti-Christmas conspiracy first espoused in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. And it's okay to mention that Soros funded revolutions in Eastern Europe, not mentioning that they were against communist or postcommunist regimes. (Add in that Soros has openly said he doesn't want to move to Israel, and he's also anti-Christian: How dare one Jew stand in the way of Armageddon!)
What I've started calling "flag hags". They can wave a flag, put a kevlar bumper sticker saying "support our troops" on their car, and the like, but God forbid they actually put their lives on the line. Or even divest themselves of our enemies. And of course, they haven't read the Constitution.
FWIW, I find that the Founding Fathers were full of crap: "He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions" Translation: Great Britain didn't sponsor westward expansion and actually treated Indians as *gasp* human beings. "...all men are created equal..." except black people, Indians, the poor, and anyone else we don't like.
And of course, right-wingers either get the Constitution wrong (as when Bush said the states have supreme power wrt Indians, despite the fact that the commerce clause explicitly states otherwise) or use "original intent", a doctrine first espoused by (surprise, surprise) Chief Justice Taney in Dred Scott v. Sanford.
Just a couple points:
How was doing business with Hussein anti-American or unpatriotic? He wasn't always our enemy.
The guys who signed the Declaration weren't the same guys who signed the Constitution, with a handful of exceptions.
It's important to remember that the death or displacement of Native Americans is one of the foundations of the country. Hence the whole "quarter millennium of warfare" thing. The part of the Declaration you quoted helps to affirm that.
A good [link=http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2010/12/09/0/index.html]account[/link] of the attacks here. They got some of the credit card sites, but apparently couldn't touch Amazon.
I think it was one of those things the media talked about, but voters generally didn't care about. But Palin got to meet Saakashvili, so that was cool I guess.
The attack on Amazon got cancelled.
What so you don't care if someone is able to get into you're bank account and wipe you out? The problem with these hackers attack Visa and Mastercard is that one of them may try to start also going after someones credit card info. I have a really big problem with that. I hope these hackers are found.
Oh and before someone comes a long with a dumb comment I'm going to point out that if someone takes my credit card info and uses it. It is called THEFT and it is a illegal. It is right up there with Identity theft.
...I don't think he was saying it wasn't a big deal? Although those internet security bills are nothing but legal censorship. As for the 'dumb' comment. Really? Who would come to the defense of that? C'mon man! Reply to the actual content of someone's post before spouting the weekly dose of derp.
Not to mention a DDoS attack - which is what these were - is pretty far removed from trying to get someone's credit card information. The programs aren't the same, the methods aren't the same, and I guarantee you they wouldn't be using /b/ to organize it were that their objective.
That's the problem with the phrase "hacker" - it conveys absolutely nothing about the nature of the illicit activity involved.