TrickstaPriest reacted to Tom in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Last I read it looked like he was agreeing with the idea that he was actually referencing a recent Fox News piece that was attempting to tie an increase in crime/violence to immigrants and misspoke.
(The scarier idea here being that he's still apparently taking his 'real' security briefings from whatever he watches on cable tv rather than the Country's security/intelligence agencies.)
TrickstaPriest reacted to Kaspar Hauser in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Here's a good piece on Trump's use of "humiliation porn" as both a candidate and a president, and how the blowback could erode part of his base:
The brutal truth is that humiliated people want to humiliate others in order to temporarily relieve their own feelings of shame. As one of Altemeyer's "social dominators", Trump instinctively gets that and uses it perfectly.
Social dominators tend to have pronounced sociopathic traits. In his book, "Violence: Reflections on a National Epidemic," Psychiatrist James Gilligan argues that contrary to popular opinion, sociopaths are not shameless; in fact, they experience almost nothing but shame. Gilligan believes that, when taken to its extreme, shame shuts down all emotional experiences except, perhaps, for rage. Gilligan worked in a maximum-security penitentiary for many years, counseling people imprisoned for monstrous acts of violence. The prisoners he worked with consistently described themselves as the "living dead", referring to their inability to feel anything besides anger. They backed up these assertions with horrific acts of cruelty and self-mutilation. How could they do such things, Gilligan asks, unless they were in some way emotionally numbed? Each of these prisoners had suffered profound emotional or physical abuse in childhood, and each responded by going on the offensive.
Gilligan uses the prison system to illustrate the strategic use of shame in capitalist societies, drawing attention to the role that institutionalized rape plays in modern penitentiaries. He argues that the purpose of the digital anal rape euphemistically referred to as a "cavity search" isn't really to find concealed drugs, but rather to humiliate prisoners into submission. He also writes that guards turn a blind eye to prisoner-on-prisoner rape because, by dividing prisoners into rapists and rape victims, the prisoners' rage is redirected away from the guards and towards one other. The cost of this strategy is borne entirely by the prison population, whose already compromised humanity is systematically ravaged.
Gilligan believes that the prison system apes the class structure of capitalist society. Just as the guards break the collective strength of the prisoner population by encouraging the stronger prisoners to humiliate and oppress the weaker, so the upper classes preserve their social dominance by encouraging the middle classes to humiliate and oppress the lower classes. The guards and the upper classes both use shame as a weapon in the battle to control their social environment. The victims of prison rape, like the lower classes, are psychologically damaged by the excessive shame they're forced to bear. Relative to other classes, their capacity for positive emotion is greatly impaired, and their risk of developing psychological disorders is dramatically heightened. These problems limit their individual and collective power to fight for social change.
Members of the middle class are terrified of losing their class status and descending into the underclass not only because of the material hardships they would face, but also because of the extreme humiliation accompanying the plunge. People who have learned how to despise the underclass will despise themselves if they fall into it. By condemning vast numbers of people to the economic underclass, economic catastrophes like the ongoing fallout from 2008/2009 create epidemics of shame.
Shame fertilizes hatred. We hate in others what we hate in ourselves, and what we hate in ourselves are usually the emotional needs we’ve psychologically repressed. Our sexual, intellectual, and social maturation depends upon our ability to satisfy those needs. We feel ashamed when our needs go unmet for great lengths of time, which is a common experience among the working class. Such unrelenting shame can make our needs seem like threats to our peace of mind, prompting us to drive them from our conscious awareness. The more we repress our needs, the more our emotional development is stifled, the more frustrated and angry we feel, and the more vengeful our desires become. This, in turn, compels us to repress our needs all the more.
Unacknowledged needs don't disappear. Instead, they re-assert themselves by focusing our attention upon people and practices that remind us of them. These reminders rub salt into our wounds, and so we’re tempted to attack them. Unacknowledged emotional pain doesn't disappear, either; instead, it re-asserts itself at the edge of our awareness, shaping our perceptions. The filth we recoil from in the world around us is often the gore spilling from the wounds we've inflicted upon ourselves. The more mutilated we become, the more loathsomely mangled the world seems to be, and the more we desire its destruction. Psychological repression thereby fuels political violence and oppression.
By leaving people chronically frightened and ashamed, and by encouraging misogyny and contempt for weakness, the psychological trauma inflicted by unrestrained capitalism makes us more susceptible to right-wing authoritarianism and manipulation by people like Trump. The man has accessed the stockpiles of self-loathing we've been building up in the American underclass and turned it against his enemies--the "elites" in government, the media, and academia whose security, confidence, wealth, and education represent everything his supporters have been denied.
Again, reason alone won't dent his supporters' faith in the man. The pain goes way, way too deep for that.
TrickstaPriest reacted to Badger in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Yeah, no disagreement on much of that. Fox is a problem in that area, but much of the last 8 years everybody else seemed asleep, and many conservatives do consider it disingenuous that they suddenly wake up now. The media situation goes back at least to the Lewinsky scandal (if not the Bork-Thomas hearings or even long,long before). It did seem to start getting amped up in the Bush years, then when Obama got in, the conservatives decided to amp it up even more, and now with Trump it gets amped up more.
I am also frustrated the conservatives ignore Fox's sins, and the liberals ignore non-Fox outlets. Kind of "yeah, they're biased scum, but they are my biased scum, so I will pretend they aren't biased scum, and claim to everyone they are moral, upright, honest people." I admit I don't call out Fox as much as I should here, but, there isn't much shortage of people here who will do that. And I sometimes get in a mode of "If I don't call out the others, who will?" I really cant say how I should or shouldn't handle that.
In any case, the media as a whole, has built this pit for themselves for a generation plus, they cant just say "ehh, forget all that, respect me now". It seems too much like an alcoholic parent whose problems wrecked your childhood time and again, who now wants you to forgive them because they have been sober for a week. You have to prove yourself, and hope you are given another chance.
I am pretty sick of Trump, the media, and the protestors. I actually was sympathetic to the protestors for awhile, the disappointment would be understandable, if a bit overly-dramatic (this election, I was essentially going to dodge one bullet, to only get hit in the gut by another, no matter who won, so yeah I was a bit disappointed, myself, only with time to prepare because disaster was inescapable reality for me). But, my sympathy has dried up at this point. And I don't have tolerance for breaking stuff because you didn't get your way (admittedly I think most of that are the anarchist element doing their thing, but if it is done in your causes' name, you get the blame, the Tea Party and Occupiers can testify to that). Enough with "not my President", now it is time to pick your battles and figure out how to limit him to 4 years.
To be honest, I don't know why I am on this thread. I am as disgusted as possibly can be towards nearly every political element involved, and keep telling myself to quit posting about politics and be done with it. But, I keep getting reeled back in, somehow. Makes me feel like an addict or some sort, myself.
Note: By your post, I probably have missed some of your post, as I indicated I tend to phase in and out on this thread, because I am friggin sick of it all, then come in, try to go cold turkey, see something stupid on the news, have to look at this thread, Vicious cycle.
TrickstaPriest reacted to Lord Liaden in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Root canal aside (for which you have my sympathy) , I don't think you're wrong. IMO President Trump is only a symptom of the unrest among the American public in recent years. He could never have succeeded in his bid for the office except as the culmination of contentious, confrontational, extremist politics which has been building up over this whole millennium, and has interacted synergisticly with the deep fault lines which have always existed throughout American society.
I don't anticipate outright civil war, but I won't be surprised if we see Vietnam-scale upheavals before things settle down. It may be that kind of catharsis is needed periodically.
TrickstaPriest reacted to Lord Liaden in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Canadian woman turned away from U.S. border after questions about religion, Trump
More frightening to me than the letter of the orders coming out of Washington, is the underlying attitudes that those orders stir up, and that some people will take them as validating.
TrickstaPriest reacted to Twilight in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Since everybody is changing their avatars, I figure I would too. For some reason discussion to Trump brought to mind FFVI and a battle against an evil empire, so I chose Gau since he's my favorite character from that game.
TrickstaPriest reacted to Lord Liaden in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Even if that's your position, you state it privately to the other UN ambassadors. Making such a proclamation public may win you some domestic support, but the resulting anger among the public in the other countries is going to force their leaders to take a hard line so as not to appear weak to their own constituents.
Someone should shove Ambassador Haley's nose into the page in the dictionary defining, "diplomacy."
TrickstaPriest reacted to Sociotard in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
Not exactly either. The quote that comes to mind is "I didn't make the sea, I just sail on it."
Journalists didn't make a marketplace that prized the speedy and the salacious. But, if we have 24 hour news, speed matters. If we need clicks, social media or otherwise, salacious matters. If customers are more likely to select media that reflects pre-existing ideology, maintaining partisan bias matters.
Customers could seek out balanced news sources, but that takes work. No, not just work to go look, but a willingness to become intentionally uncomfortable, reading things that fall outside their comfort zone, and then force themselves to fact check things. Effectively, to be part-time journalists themselves.
The fault then, is the setup of the news marketplace itself. That's what makes the problem so intractable. The marketplace rewards partisan, salacious, speed-over-accuracy journalists and lazy, comfortable people.
Frankly, there aren't many options for changing the marketplace.
TrickstaPriest reacted to ghost-angel in DC Movies- if at first you don't succeed...
Ostensively - it's specifically because they are iconic mythic characters that are embodiments of high ideals. Easily recognizable and instantly convey specific kinds ideas about character and attitude.
Representation matters. The Face Of America. The God Of Thunder. The Billionaire Crimefighter. The Man Of Steel. Once you open up the idea that anyone can wear these mantles you break down the barriers that they are just one kind of face, that 'normal' isn't so myopically represented.
And before we go there; create a secondary character that reflects these mantles and you get the 'they're just a knock off of...' arguments. Catch-22.
It doesn't change the fundamental nature of a mythological character, to be honest. It expands it, sure. But change?
If Captain America is supposed to represent an ideal of The American Way, or Fighting For Justice, or however you break down his basic nature, how does making him a Black man over a White man alter that sentence?
Borrowing this from a Tumblr post:
Q: Why does that character have to be gay/bi/black/Asian/Hispanic/etc?
A: As opposed to what?
I’ve found this to be a useful response, because many people will hesitate before saying “white” or “straight.” That hesitation comes from the realization, however subconscious, that they have defaulted all characters to white and straight, and are thereby declaring this normal, while everything else is other. From here, if they choose to acknowledge their internalized (unintentional but still harmful) supremacy rather than going on the defensive, they will begin to understand the real value of representation.
TrickstaPriest reacted to Michael Hopcroft in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
I sometimes think Donald Trump lives in a comic-book world. Not that he's a Lex Luthor type, but rather that he believes the world is a lot simpler and more direct than it actually is. That seems to be the premise of his entire election campaign -- people make things too complicated, so let's boil them down into decisions you can make in ten to fifteen minutes based on solid, immutable guidelines that never change regardless of circumstances. Which is how a comic-book universe seems to work in a lot of ways.
Ideally one would think he would grow out of that with experience, but so far he's giving the impression that he just doesn't care about any details beyond the broad strokes and clear, unbreakable lines of judgment,
TrickstaPriest reacted to Pariah in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
I celebrated today’s inauguration of President Donald Trump by changing my voter registration from Republican to Libertarian.
I first registered to vote when I turned 18, back in the Reagan administration. I've been a registered (if not always enthusiastic) Republican my entire adult life. I haven't always agreed with the policies and positions of the Party, but I always felt that the Republican Presidents (or Presidential nominees) and other Party leaders were basically good people who genuinely wanted what was best for the nation.
But I don't feel that way about the current Republican leadership. In the last few weeks, Republican leaders in Congress and elsewhere have demonstrated an astounding recklessness in their actions. Their first act in Congress was to try to abolish the independent ethics panel that oversees them. Who decided that was a good idea? They want to tear down the Affordable Care Act--which, almost without exception, they refer to derisively as ‘Obamacare’--and replace it, eventually, it with something else. But nobody seems to know what that is. Oh, sure, I’ve heard people talk about about ‘Health Savings Accounts’. I suppose they’re okay, if you’ve got so much money that you don’t need insurance anyway. At this point, even I am starting to think Canada’s single-payer system looks pretty good.
And as for President Trump? He’s even more disturbing. He has no background and no experiences to prepare him for this job--no legal, military, government, or public service experience whatsoever. Worse, his temperament and personality make him entirely unsuited to the position. He’s erratic, combative, and unprincipled. He gets in Twitter fights with people who criticize him. He can’t be told ‘No’, because as far as I can tell, he doesn’t consider himself answerable or accountable to anybody. His lack of concern for possible Russian interference in our country’s affairs is astonishing. Didn’t Republicans used to want to fight the Russians? And his choices for Cabinet? Incomprehensible. He says he wants to ‘drain the swamp’--but he keeps nominating tycoons and insiders. And not even tycoons and insiders that make sense. He wants a brain surgeon in charge of Housing and Urban Development, an enemy of public education in charge of the Education Department, and a Wall Street executive as Secretary of State. To be fair, I suppose it’s fitting that his nominees are as inexperienced and unqualified as he is.
So no, I don’t feel like the Republican Party is where I belong at this point in time.
But fear not, my friends. My decision to change my registration to Libertarian doesn't indicate a seismic personality shift on my part. I haven’t become a soulless Objectivist automaton or dope-smoking hippie. In reality, my political party membership is less important to me on a daily basis than, say, making sure I leave the house in the morning with socks that match--something I do worry about (and accomplish) pretty much every day. Labels don't mean that much to me, and political party affiliation isn't even in the top ten of how I self-identify.
Changing my voter registration to Libertarian means mostly that I've grown tired of the two-party chicanery our nation has endured for the last twenty years or so. Looking back, I don't feel that my political positions have changed that much. Perhaps the years have made me more moderate in those positions (and likely more cynical), but I have pretty much the same ideas about government that I've always had: that government exists solely to protect the rights, safety, and freedom of its citizens; that government must represent the interests of all its citizens, not just those belonging to the Party currently in power; and most importantly, that government operates by consent of the governed.
I don't think either major political party, Democratic or Republican, operates that way any more (if either or both ever did). Both Parties are more like mega-corporations now, completely amoral and bereft of any genuine concern for the common people in their power-driven chase for ever-increasing market share. We're no longer people that they represent; we're consumers, targets of their greedy and self-promulgating marketing schemes. “Blind men [and women] in the market,” as Rush says, “buying what we're sold.”
Well, I'm not buying any more. Not now, anyway.
I already know that I won't remain a registered Libertarian indefinitely. When the next round of caucuses and primary elections rolls around, I'll change my registration back to Republican in order to participate. Utah is so heavily Republican that the primaries are where most elections are really decided, and the G.O.P. holds closed primaries. So I'll hold my nose and switch back, because it's what I'll have to do to have a voice. And then, in all likelihood, I'll switch back to Libertarian again. Or maybe, two years from now, there will be another option. I doubt it, but maybe. No need to worry about that just now, I suppose.
But for now, I'm no longer a Republican. The G.O.P. won't miss me (and my one vote) or even notice that I'm gone. And that's okay. The Libertarians will likely be excited to have another name on their roster. If the helps the get more third-party involvement in future elections, then I’m glad to do it.
But mostly, I just can't be a Republican right now.
TrickstaPriest reacted to DasBroot in Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)
I was joking with my wife (a very religious black Baptist from a long, long line of such) about how the oath of office would go:
Me: "I'm waiting for him to burst into flames when he places his hand on the bible."
Her (as Trump): "Can I just hover over it? I'm a hoverer, ok? I like to hover."
Me: "Repeat after me: I, Donald J Trump, do solemnly swear...."
Her: "Hold on, hold on: Before we begin ... I have this legal document that states our definition of the term 'solemnly swear' in the context of this contract..."