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Can my narrative experts opine?

smitty_one_each (243267) writes | about a year ago

User Journal 25

How about this dead Aussie?
This tragedy sucks as bad as the one that befell Trayvon. How is the narrative going to evolve to handle this one? I suspect not at all; since violence only merits notice in one direction, the Racism Industrial Complex goes on holiday, leaving the cricket chorus to pick up the slack.How about this dead Aussie?
This tragedy sucks as bad as the one that befell Trayvon. How is the narrative going to evolve to handle this one? I suspect not at all; since violence only merits notice in one direction, the Racism Industrial Complex goes on holiday, leaving the cricket chorus to pick up the slack.

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You're not gonna like this... (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year ago | (#44629777)

Saw that on the Beeb this morning.

I'm not Australian, but I lived there for some years, have family there, go back to visit every so often, read some of their press, etc.

I think their take on it is going to be along the lines of "A country that lets its kids run riot *and* lets them get hold of guns is not a place that sane people want to go to."

Which is pretty much what I've been saying for years: America's gun culture is a culture of death.

Re:You're not gonna like this... (1)

pudge (3605) | about a year ago | (#44631861)

America's gun culture is a culture of death.

That comment is mindless, indeed. It doesn't reflect reality in any way whatsoever. You'd have to argue that this guy would be alive if they didn't have access to a gun, which doesn't fit the fact that they were out looking for someone to kill. In other words, you're just making shit up.

Let's go back to your previous line:

"A country that lets its kids run riot *and* lets them get hold of guns is not a place that sane people want to go to."

There's just no sense in there. Amend it thusly, and it works:

"A country that lets its kids run riot ... is not a place that sane people want to go to."

Would a country that lets its kids run riot be OK if they didn't have guns? Of course not. Would a country with well-behaved and respectful children, who have guns, be OK? Of course it would. (I regularly attend a class where usually the only armed people are kids between 10 and 18, and no one is bothered by it in the slightest. Hell, we don't even have to sign permission slips ... it's part of our culture, and while the kids require supervision, there's nothing to be actually nervous about at all.)

There's a big problem (1)

pudge (3605) | about a year ago | (#44631785)

The folks on the right do not have incentive or motivation to politicize tragedies. So only when the narrative favors, or can be twisted to favor, the left do you see stuff like Trayvon Martin. Hell, to this day, even educated leftists like the people who made The Butler believe the lie that Martin was hunted and murdered. Facts don't matter.

Re:There's a big problem (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44632699)

I'd edit you slightly to say that "educated leftists like the people who made The Butler [know that there is power to be derived from perpetuating] the lie that Martin was hunted and murdered".
If you hold that the only thing that matters is controlling groups of people, much of the media and legislative behavior snap into focus.

Re:There's a big problem (1)

pudge (3605) | about a year ago | (#44632961)

You give them a lot of credit. I am not sure it is warranted. But maybe.

Re:There's a big problem (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44633753)

Read Gustave Lebon's "The Crowd"

Re:There's a big problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44657341)

Or for a more entertaining version, "Demonic" by Ann Coulter.

-- RG

Apples and oranges (1)

Le Marteau (206396) | about a year ago | (#44638671)

The difference between the Zimmerman case and this case is, Zimmerman stood a chance of (and did) being exonerated, and was being praised.

The murderers in the Aussie case stand no chance of walking for quite some time. And no one except objective imbeciles is praising the killers here.

Tisk-tisking the race-baiters and saying they are hypocrites is appropriate in many occasions. This is not one of them.

Re:Apples and oranges (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44640623)

If this year had not features such an onslaught of anti-Second Amendment (and indeed, anti-Constitutional efforts) after Newtown,
and then the Racism Industrial Complex trying to overwhelm our legal system in the George Zimmerman complex,
I would be fully in your court.
Apples and oranges?
Sir, this is a war for the fruit of our future, and Heaven take me if I'm giving up to these Godless Commies without a thorough struggle.

Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44642569)

The media would have gone bananas if Martin was a white kid who was followed, harassed, and killed by a trigger happy idiot in his grandfather's neighborhood. Zimmerman got away with murder, plain and simple. Hell it was nighttime and Martin was wearing a hooded sweatshirt, he likely couldn't tell before getting out of his truck the race of the kid he was following.

This story isn't about race either. This story is about undisciplined kids with easy access to lethal weapons. If they were sitting around bored and all they had was a basketball would they have been able to kill this guy? Unlikely. However since the gun culture dictates the message in the media we won't hear anything more than the shortest conceivable lip service paid to gun control.

I would expect that if the gun was not stolen, it was owned by an irresponsible owner who was not one of the arrested. And as usual, that owner will face no consequences for their terrible decision. We have a disgusting number of deaths every single day in this country from people who leave their weapons laying around, and we continue to not do anything about it. There are responsible ways to own a gun, however we regularly see news stories about what happens when people are not responsible and yet we learn no lesson from those events.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44643097)

Zimmerman got away with murder, plain and simple.

Not what the jury said.
While I don't have a problem agreeing with you that neither case had to do with race, the staggering asymmetry of how one case is blown into a month-long occupation of a state capitol [tampabay.com] , while another receives orders of magnitude less attention. In particular, my local news, which couldn't get either Zimmerman's or Martin's face off the screen, wasn't showing any pictures of the Oklahoma suspects. Why. Might. That. Be?

I hope my son isn't interested in Journalism, because I don't think it an honorable profession.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44643351)

Zimmerman got away with murder, plain and simple.

Not what the jury said.

You can phrase it however you like, but nobody that I have heard from disagrees with the fact that Zimmerman killed Martin. If you're uncomfortable with calling it murder, so be it.

While I don't have a problem agreeing with you that neither case had to do with race, the staggering asymmetry of how one case is blown into a month-long occupation of a state capitol,

Isn't that an act of petitioning the government? If that was a group of tea partiers trying to get the state to call a special session to repeal a specific tax, would one be better than the other?

while another receives orders of magnitude less attention

The Oklahoma case is around 48 hours old. For the first 48 hours we didn't have all that much news on the Martin case. On top of that, Zimmerman was immediately trying for a defense based on self-defense (or, for a while, "stand your ground"). The kids in Oklahoma have not, to the best of my understanding, attempted any such claim so far.

In particular, my local news, which couldn't get either Zimmerman's or Martin's face off the screen, wasn't showing any pictures of the Oklahoma suspects. Why. Might. That. Be?

I don't know why your local news isn't showing the pictures (maybe because your local news outlets don't show pictures of accused minors? I don't know who your local outlets are so that is my best guess), but they are not hard to find [nypost.com] .

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44645095)

The Oklahoma case is around 48 hours old.

This is roughly your best point. "Wait and see," indeed.

If that was a group of tea partiers trying to get the state to call a special session to repeal a specific tax, would one be better than the other?

Tea Partiers tend do show up at work. Has there ever been a Tea Party "occupation"? If there is, I'm unaware. For all that, your point about petitioning is not without merit.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44645721)

If that was a group of tea partiers trying to get the state to call a special session to repeal a specific tax, would one be better than the other?

Tea Partiers tend do show up at work. Has there ever been a Tea Party "occupation"? If there is, I'm unaware.

I'll admit I did not read deeply into the story you posted about the group who occupied the state capitol to ask for a review of SYG. Were they actually there 24x7 or did they just show up during working hours and weekends? And depending on the number of people involved it isn't that hard to find people who work nights and are available to protest for a while during the day.

Although if you really felt that a law was on the books that was a life-or-death matter, you might consider taking some time off work to voice your feelings on it. If it really, really, effected you strongly, you might even be willing to take time unpaid from work.

That said, if you have evidence to show otherwise, feel free to share. I just think that you assertion of "show up for work" carries some assumptions with it that we don't have evidence to back up at this point.

For all that, your point about petitioning is not without merit

Thank you. Similarly I'm not aware of a time when Tea Partiers occupied anything. I recall there have been times when people have compared the Tea Party to the Occupy (location) movements but I don't know that the Tea Party groups have ever staged any kind of occupation. I won't pretend to be knowledgeable enough on them to state why that may be.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44646599)

I've taken occasional days off of work to protest/blog various events. This Monday I was in Richmond [fairfaxfreecitizen.com] .
As somebody who's been doing Tea Party events since '09, I'll allow for some similarities with what the Left/Unions have been up to (e.g. the Scott Walker recall effort in WI). As to which side is more "astroturfed", well, I may be standing too close to judge that effectively.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44655791)

I suspect that if I were to accuse the Tea Party of being an instrument of the Koch brothers and their big business ilk, you would have just as many counterpoints to that claim as I would if you were to accuse the Left of being an instrument of organized labor. Furthermore I suspect neither of us would be able to convince the other of a different conclusion; hence your comment

As to which side is more "astroturfed", well, I may be standing too close to judge that effectively.

May be as valid for me as for you. I'm actually not sure how one could find someone in this country - or really any other for that matter - who could impartially approach such a question.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44657363)

I suspect that if I were to accuse the Tea Party of being an instrument of the Koch brothers and their big business ilk

That the Koch Brothers & 'ilk' are substantial financiers really isn't in dispute. So, what? What about the Constitutional substance of the message?

Re:Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44657999)

I suspect that if I were to accuse the Tea Party of being an instrument of the Koch brothers and their big business ilk

That the Koch Brothers & 'ilk' are substantial financiers really isn't in dispute. So, what?

The issue relating to them is that they are exploiting the Tea Party for their own personal gains. Many people who are critical of the Tea Party see essentially no distinction between the main aims of the Tea Party (from a legislative sense) and the kinds of legislation that would most dramatically benefit big business while seldom if ever actually bringing about benefit to anyone who makes less than $250k / year.

What about the Constitutional substance of the message?

Some of us don't really see the Tea Party as being about constitutionality of anything. Furthermore many of them seem to be picking and choosing which constitutional amendments they want and overlooking the others - this gives the whole constitutional argument a hard time staying afloat. it is hard to accept an argument on something like "the intent of the founding fathers" when the person posing said argument is discarding some of what is in the constitution and adding in some things that are not.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44658285)

The issue relating to them is that they are exploiting the Tea Party for their own personal gains.

I guess 'exploiting' implies that the Tea Partiers are unwitting participants. Another view is that the Koch Brothers are the Robin Hood, not the Sheriff of Nottingham (if you will) in the whole equation.

most dramatically benefit big business seldom if ever actually bringing about benefit to anyone who makes less than $250k / year.

I see the legislative agenda of the last several years as wholly in favor of the Big Cronies, and thoroughly against the "little guy". One ponders whether the "Emmanuel Goldstienification" of the Koch Brothers may be part of a broader strategy. In much the same way Rush Limbaugh [mediaite.com] , Sarah Palin, and Grover Norquist [salon.com] , in turn, find themselves the target of unseemly attacks.

Some of us don't really see the Tea Party as being about constitutionality of anything. Furthermore many of them seem to be picking and choosing which constitutional amendments they want and overlooking the others - this gives the whole constitutional argument a hard time staying afloat.

Can you be more specific? In particular, which amendments do you think are being ignored, and for what reason? I submit that the over-arching issue facing us is excessive centralization of power. Specific Amendments in the Bill of Rights pertain to Articles in the Constitution in the context of the British oppression of the 18th century. But they all support the thesis that the individual, not the State, is square one in the analysis.
We've cheated on that in the last century, treating FDR's Second Bill of Rights as though ratified, when in fact it's not.
Thus, roughly half the country does not view the current Progressive course as legitimate: not theoretically, not historically, not economically, not demographically.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44659295)

The issue relating to them is that they are exploiting the Tea Party for their own personal gains.

I guess 'exploiting' implies that the Tea Partiers are unwitting participants

Many people hold to the hypothesis that the people who sign up for the Tea Party have little to nothing to gain from the goals of the same, while the big business types who in part fund their activities have much, much more to gain. Basically to many people the Tea Party movement is a giant bait-and-switch where big business is offering nebulous and un-characterizable gains for the partiers while being in position to reap huge benefits for themselves. Note that this does not require the tea partiers to be stupid, it only requires them to believe what they are being told to be true.

Another view is that the Koch Brothers are the Robin Hood, not the Sheriff of Nottingham (if you will) in the whole equation.

I guess that depends on what one thinks of Robin Hood. If you feel that his extralegal efforts were for great justice, then if you can somehow convince yourself that those are the aims of Koch and company I suppose you can make that argument. On the other hand if you feel that Robin Hood's greatest accomplishment was stealing from the rich to benefit the masses, then I'm not sure how you can possibly frame billionaire brothers in that context.

most dramatically benefit big business seldom if ever actually bringing about benefit to anyone who makes less than $250k / year.

I see the legislative agenda of the last several years as wholly in favor of the Big Cronies

If I'm reading you right we have a lot of common ground there. I see the majority of what has been signed in the past couple decades as having been mostly big handouts to wealthy businesses. One of several problems with that is that some of the largest corporate donors - I'm thinking the insurance industry in particular though there are others - donate to people of all stripes and end up invariably winning with every legislative action.

and thoroughly against the "little guy"

I'm not sure that legislation has necessarily been against the little guy so much as it has been more or less "little-guy-neutral". I believe it is possible to make legislation that benefits the big guy without inherently screwing the little guy. That said, I generally still disagree with such legislation.

This does bring up a question though. If you feel that past legislation has harmed "the little guy", can you tell me of something from the Tea Party platform that you see as being specifically beneficial for the little guy - particularly from an economic standpoint? Everything I have seen from them that touches on economics screams (at least, to me) of being more gifts to the wealthy. You are undoubtedly more knowledgeable on Tea Party aims than I, so you may be able to provide a good counterexample.

In much the same way Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, and Grover Norquist, in turn, find themselves the target of unseemly attacks.

If that link was supposed to be an unseemly attack of Rush, I couldn't find such an attack. President Lawnchair was just describing how he felt that his republican friends were worried about what Rush would say about them if they didn't vote his way. I would say that is more an acknowledgment of power than an attack of any real kind. As for the Norquist article, I think the author would have done better for his own cause to not mention him in the title as he never brought him up by name in the article; it seems that he just wanted to bring in eyeballs.

Some of us don't really see the Tea Party as being about constitutionality of anything. Furthermore many of them seem to be picking and choosing which constitutional amendments they want and overlooking the others - this gives the whole constitutional argument a hard time staying afloat.

Can you be more specific? In particular, which amendments do you think are being ignored, and for what reason?

I promise I'm not intentionally dodging this question (hopefully my listing it specifically helps to convince you of that), but I didn't have as much time to write this reply as I thought I would have (or it took me longer...). I want to get back to this one specifically - and may end up starting a JE specifically for it if I don't get to it this weekend.

treating FDR's Second Bill of Rights as though ratified, when in fact it's not.

I'm not sure of a case of the government behaving as though it was explicitly ratified.

Thus, roughly half the country does not view the current Progressive course as legitimate: not theoretically, not historically, not economically, not demographically.

This is a place where we can have fun with statistics. Are you only counting people who voted in the last federal election, or are you taking survey numbers, or are you going somewhere else entirely? Being as the voter turnout rates in this country continue to be embarrassingly low it's really quite difficult to say what the country actually does or does not support.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44659625)

All I can tell you, to offer a specific empirical result, is that Mark Levin's books aren't blowing up the best-seller lists for nothing.
There is a "gut feeling" afoot in the country that too much power has collapsed into DC.
Whether the Limbaughs & Kochs et alia are driving that, or merely riding it for their own personal gain, is moot: it's there, in spades.

If that link was supposed to be an unseemly attack of Rush, I couldn't find such an attack. President Lawnchair was just describing how he felt that his republican friends were worried about what Rush would say about them if they didn't vote his way. I would say that is more an acknowledgment of power than an attack of any real kind.

Among the set of things that W got right was that he never, ever did more than suck up the blowback from "Imma Decider" decisions, jacked up through the roof though they may have been. In stark contrast, in 2009, Obama “joked” about auditing his enemies [pjmedia.com] . In light of the IRS scandal [typepad.com] , there is a real, ugly problem here. It's even worse, from a Tea Party perspective, to consider that it's not likely that any substantial repression was going on without at least tacit GOP leadership acknowledgement. Am I saying this had a chilling effect [wikipedia.org] ? You bet your bippy I am.

I submit that, overall, we're turning a corner here. I don't predict it will be as fast or as painless as anybody might like, but I also don't think that we'll achieve the disaster of a Civil War again, either. But by hook or by crook, the balance of power has got to get back to the States, and from the States back to the individual.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year ago | (#44661733)

IRS scandal

Personally, I believe this has become a scandal only because the true power brokers in the media are conservatives, and they forced news coverage of it. From what I have seen, the conservative groups who were faced with extra scrutiny by the IRS were nearly without exception opposed to taxation quite nearly as a whole entity. Some of them had members who openly encouraged people to either not pay their taxes at all or to cheat on them to pay less than what the law requires. Being as the tax code is the law, and the IRS is tasked with the product of that law, it would make sense that they would be concerned with those who are actively interested in breaking the law.

I don't predict it will be as fast or as painless as anybody might like, but I also don't think that we'll achieve the disaster of a Civil War again

I suspect a dissolution of the union is coming soon. I think the real question is how many countries will the US break up into. I suspect one country will come from the great lakes region; take the I90 corridor from MN all the way to Boston, add MI, PA, VT, NH, CT, and ME. Where the Dakotas would go I have no idea though; I'm not sure they would want to deal with the deep south and they don't have much in common with the Pacific Northwest even though they would benefit from a seaport somewhere.

I just hope when it comes we see the resultant countries make an amnesty agreement of some sort for the first few years for people to get their affairs in order and move to their preferred location.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44665233)

I suspect a dissolution of the union is coming soon. I think the real question is how many countries will the US break up into.

You'll have to let me bet you a cup of coffee that this isn't going to happen.
Proof: the blue states are like that psychotic ex. The states that could go it alone, i.e. the productive "red" states, are also the ones that retain any loyalty to the 1787 Constitution in its un-sodomized-by-Woodrow condition.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

Jerry Smith (806480) | about a year ago | (#44668397)

Zimmerman got away with murder, plain and simple.

Not what the jury said.

While I don't have a problem agreeing with you that neither case had to do with race, the staggering asymmetry of how one case is blown into a month-long occupation of a state capitol [tampabay.com] , while another receives orders of magnitude less attention. In particular, my local news, which couldn't get either Zimmerman's or Martin's face off the screen, wasn't showing any pictures of the Oklahoma suspects. Why. Might. That. Be?

I hope my son isn't interested in Journalism, because I don't think it an honorable profession.

Because not every race responds equally in the same way. Some kid stole my sons lunch, "you can't complain because that's racist.". Yup., 12 years old and already pulling the racist card.

Re:Neither was about race (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44668717)

Yuck.
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