• Benj96
    1.3k
    That's 1 out of 3.5 M unemployed.
    The profit margin dictates replacing expensive employees with cheaper ones, more employees with fewer employees, at every step.
    Vera Mont

    It does. And that is how capitalism operates. I pointed it out as a demonstration of that fact. Not because I believe its the ethical thing to do.

    My beliefs are that those at the top, ought to have the greatest sense of responsibility and duty to those at the bottom. Not an easy task for sure.

    They must exert their knowledge and wisdom and position of power in an effort to serve the most vulnerable/uneducated and protect them from exploitation. They may not even enjoy the responsibility but see it as a duty they must rise to.

    If at any point such a leader is not truly serving the foundation of their society, then they ought to resign and let those who are take over the wheel of the ship of humanity.

    If one wants to speak for everyone, they had better be sure they have the skills to do so.
  • Benj96
    1.3k
    What?? I ain't into guilt or shame, baby!Vera Mont

    Haha that's the spirit :)
  • Vera Mont
    313
    You see the same dangers I've pointed out, but you need to drive them to their conclusions first.Christoffer

    I did. My conclusion was a little more conclusive, is all.

    The AI that actually will be used, and is already being used to a great degree, is advanced algorithmic AI, synthetic intelligence, neural network intelligence. This is simply an AI that is specifically tailored to a specific function.Christoffer

    Yes. So when I asked "For whom? To what end? What motivates AI?" That is what I was asking. Who drives it, and for whose benefit? That's the central question of the future. AI doesn't just churn out product willy-nilly, or design environmental clean-up operations for its own amusement: somebody has to program it to do those things; somebody has to want those things done.
    Who? Why? For whose benefit? To what end?

    Here you actually start to get to the point I'm talking about: the actual collapse of capitalist culture.Christoffer

    Of course: it's the obvious conclusion. One of the reasons it will happen is automation. As mentioned previously: Workers become unemployed by by the thousands, then the millions and billions. They stop getting paid, they stop buying luxuries, they stop paying taxes. It's never been easy for governments to tax the rich in proportion to the wealth they suck up; it's considerably harder with global mobility and electronic concealment of assets; it's not going to get any easier when the profits dwindle due to an impoverished consumer population. Even if a government is able to - in spite of fierce resistance by capitalist interest blocs - pass UBI legislation, collecting the funds to cover even the barest subsistence level payout will be damn near impossible - and become absolutely impossible as corporate profits and taxes dry up.
    Household debt is already close to a breaking point and inflation isn't helping. National debts are high enough; corporate debt is not so far behind. Once the banks own all of everybody's imaginary future assets, what happens? Everybody defaults. What happens to money? What happens to capitalism?

    throwing the world into a total capitalist collapse and soon follows, as a natural outcome of that chaos... war.Christoffer

    We already have lots of wars. Climate migrations will start some more. So will the totalitarian backlash that's engulfing more and more democracies. Once the economy breaks down, who pays the warring armies? Who buys the munitions? Who makes the machines? When money stops making money, there will be no more investment; no more capitalists. Once they're gone, whoever takes over the broken pieces of civilization will have to decide what leftover automation they want to keep and to what purpose. I don't know who that will be. Whatever we think of it now won't matter then.

    I don't think ethics enters into the picture or the process.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    I know that. Also the other way around. There are very powerful forces pitted against public and democratic education in the US right now, and they've been making considerable gains.
    Republicans, and white conservatives, have long been hostile to public schools. School desegregation drove white evangelicals to become the strongest Republican demographic. Ronald Reagan promised to end the Department of Education in 1980. Trump put Betsy DeVos in charge of the Department of Education,
    At the same time, the same states that curtailed women's reproductive rights and ban books.
    There has been an “alarming” surge in book censorship in the United States since last year totaling 1,586 book bans or restrictions in place, according to the director of PEN America, a nonprofit focusing on free speech and literature.
    The "we" to which you belong is being pushed to the margins.
    Vera Mont

    You make a good argument and you speak of the biggest reason I am opposed to Christianity. I have a book about the organized Christian opposition to the Nation Education Association and I have dealt with Christians who hate John Dewey.

    John Dewey was an American philosopher, psychologist, and educational reformer whose ideas have been influential in education and social reform. He was one of the most prominent American scholars in the first half of the twentieth century. Wikipedia
    Born: October 20, 1859, Burlington, VT
    Died: June 1, 1952, New York, NY
    — Wikipedia

    I may not agree 100% with John Dewey but I highly respect him. The following is why so many Christians hate him. That link is restricted but the explanation given here is good. And if you are familiar with my post, you know where I agree with him.

    John Dewey developed a pragmatic theory of inquiry to provide intelligent methods for social progress. He believed that the logic and attitude of successful scientific inquiries, properly conceived, could be fruitfully applied to morals and politics.

    Pragmatism and moral progress: John Dewey's theory of ...
    Kory Sorrel

    About the increased banning of school library books, I wish school librarians and teachers had better judgment. I strongly disapprove of socially inappropriate books such as "Captian Underpants" being in school libraries and the classics not being in the school libraries. When I teacher has to explain to young children that what makes a book funny is inappropriate behavior and they should not behave like that, then prehaps it should not be in the school library. We work hard at home to teach our children how to behave and I can not imagine a thinking parent wanting the school to make socially inappropriate behavior okay.

    That brings us to social engineering and what you said about a philosophical debate about what is good citizenship. This is a very difficult subject and my favorite approach to it is what science has to do with good moral judgment. Today one of the most hotly debated issues is our sexual differences, and :lol: the importance of wearing a mask. How many people wouldn't mind if they needed open heart surgery and no one in the room was wearing a mask? If someone thinks that is okay, that person needs a science lesson and it is shocking how many people are scientifically ignorant. Our sexual differences is another scientific subject, but unfortunately, the Bible is the only book many people read and trust and when such strong emotions are tied to religious beliefs it can be impossible to have a rational discussion about some things such as our sexual differences.

    I am sure today many more books that could be highly offensive are being published and sold to schools. When I objected to a school's choice of books, I was told children will read "Captain Underpants" but they will not read the classics. That is amoral thinking and its focus is on the technology of reading, ignoring how the book could lead a child to believe unacceptable social behavior is condoned and funny and Mom and Dad are just out of touch with the modern world. Now, this is a very sensitive subject! Who is the proper authority over children, the school or the parent?
  • Athena
    2.3k
    It does. And that is how capitalism operates. I pointed it out as a demonstration of that fact. Not because I believe its the ethical thing to do.

    My beliefs are that those at the top, ought to have the greatest sense of responsibility and duty to those at the bottom. Not an easy task for sure.

    They must exert their knowledge and wisdom and position of power in an effort to serve the most vulnerable/uneducated and protect them from exploitation. They may not even enjoy the responsibility but see it as a duty they must rise to.

    If at any point such a leader is not truly serving the foundation of their society, then they ought to resign and let those who are take over the wheel of the ship of humanity.

    If one wants to speak for everyone, they had better be sure they have the skills to do so.
    Benj96

    What a delicious subject! :nerd: The historical Roosevelt family would certainly agree with you. “The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

    ― Franklin D. Roosevelt

    Andrew Carnegie was as morally compromised as Doctor Jeckly and Mr. Hyde. He talked a good talk about the dignity of man and was known as a philanthropist, but when it came to the reality of economic competition he took the wrong side of the coal miners' fight for fair wages. He was cutthroat when it came to getting rich. At the time the science of Darwinism made our industrial reality very ugly, with the elite believing they were superior and entitled, and that created a terrible reality of using and abusing laborers. But Andrew Carnegie met your criteria of benefitting society.

    In addition to funding libraries, he paid for thousands of church organs in the United States and around the world. Carnegie's wealth helped to establish numerous colleges, schools, nonprofit organizations and associations in his adopted country and many others.
    Founded: Teachers Insurance and Annuity Ass...
    Spouse: Louise Whitfield Carnegie
    Works written: The Gospel of Wealth

    Andrew Carnegie's Story
    — Carnegie Corporation

    And when coal is cheap, many families could enjoy warm homes. Throughout our industrial history wealth was built by exploiting laborers and it made the good life affordable to many. We would not be where we are today without human sacrifice. If the masses want better lives let them take advantage of education. If we give them free education and they do not take advantage of it. then of course they will have little value and why should worry about them? They made the choices that left them valueless. My family is among these people who did not make the effort to be educated.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    We already have lots of wars. Climate migrations will start some more. So will the totalitarian backlash that's engulfing more and more democracies. Once the economy breaks down, who pays the warring armies? Who buys the munitions? Who makes the machines? When money stops making money, there will be no more investment; no more capitalists. Once they're gone, whoever takes over the broken pieces of civilization will have to decide what leftover automation they want to keep and to what purpose. I don't know who that will be. Whatever we think of it now won't matter then.Vera Mont

    No worry, no one is paying for wars in the US because we do them on credit. :joke: That sounds really stupid but we are not paying for wars as we once did. The world wars were funded by selling war bonds, and while much was done to make people patriotic and willing to support the wars, we drafted the men our nation needed to sacrifice in the struggle to win wars. Until technology replaced the troops needed to win a war. With technology, we don't have to draft people into a war and that makes it much easier to hook us into wars that we can carry on without disturbing our daily lives.

    In the future what will organize the people and how will that organization be maintained?

    Democracy is like religion in that it is a way of life that must be learned. A democracy may choose a Mussolini or Hitler and tyranny may rule. What does that look like? How is power gained and maintained? Should we prepare for the collapse of our civilization and if so how?
  • Benj96
    1.3k
    What a delicious subject! :nerd: The historical Roosevelt family would certainly agree with you. “The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”Athena

    Andrew Carnegie was as morally compromised as Doctor Jeckly and Mr. Hyde. He talked a good talk about the dignity of man and was known as a philanthropist, but when it came to the reality of economic competition he took the wrong side of the coal miners' fight for fair wages. He was cutthroat when it came to getting rich. At the time the science of Darwinism made our industrial reality very ugly, with the elite believing they were superior and entitled, and that created a terrible reality of using and abusing laborers. But Andrew Carnegie met your criteria of benefitting society.Athena

    Fascinating Athena. I never knew about the Roosevelt families philosophy. Thank you for highlighting it for me.

    My family is among these people who did not make the effort to be educatedAthena

    Oh that's a shame. Perhaps you are the new enlightened family member that shows them how the world works and how to empower themselves to lead a more fruitful life?

    Education can be be recieved from others or from the self (through rigorous/thorough and balanced observation - all things considered).

    We ought to listen to wise teachers. And when our wisdom parallels or overcomes theirs, we ought to offer it in turn to those less educated. It's our duty to give those tools to the ones without them, level the playing field as it were. Restore the balance to avoid exploitation.
  • Benj96
    1.3k
    With technology, we don't have to draft people into a war and that makes it much easier to hook us into wars that we can carry on without disturbing our daily lives.Athena

    Does the technology not get used against civilians though? A drone dropping a bomb on a city may not be a human pilot, but the people the bomb is dropped on are still civilians all the same.

    If the drone drops explosives on a purely technological and automated post then that is better in that people were not involved. But sadly tech operations and people (engineers/programmers/installers) are not inseparable. The tech doesn't arise out of thin air, so human victims are always a potential.
  • Vera Mont
    313
    No worry, no one is paying for wars in the US because we do them on credit.Athena

    I did mention the world's debt-load - with three links to graphs illustrating it. That's what will break the capitalist system. It runs on the expectation of future growth. When expectation outruns the capability for growth, you get a recession or depression. Then the government has to step in and recycle the assets. But now, the assets are not available to government: they've been block-chained and bit-coined and legerdemained out of reach.... if they ever existed in the physical world where people need food and shelter.
    Wars used to grow the economies of the victorious nations, both in the arming phase and the rebuilding phase, because patriotic [mostly female] people worked their asses off for little pay to produce munitions and supplies for the [mostly male] troops and the soldiers got paid and spent money like there was no tomorrow, which for many there wasn't. The war profiteers raked in the money and hired more people and invested in peactime construction and made more money, leaving the government to care for with all the damaged men who came back.
    When you wage war on margin, you're gambling with your national economy. And when wars are waged not for territory and resources but hegemony, there is no material return for the winning nation. Once the government runs out of credit, runs out of funds, nobody will supply all that stuff we blow up in wars or the drones that drop the the explosives.

    n the future what will organize the people and how will that organization be maintained?Athena
    Local war-lords. By force of arms. Except, they won't be able to get into the rich people's bunkers, which will be occupied by the late rich people's ex-servants and ruled by the self-promoted ex-mercenaries.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    The problem with deciphering capitalism is that it doesn't have a constant value. In a poor nation, capitalism can very rapidly improve the quality of life for the people and increase wealth. But as soon as capitalism enters a stage where the majority of the people already have accumulated wealth it starts to tap into just being about cash flow, earnings, and gains. It stops being a system of change and instead becomes a "Baudrillardian eldritch horror" in which people become a slave to it, regardless of whether they want to or not. It starts to corrupt the people and divide them into rich and poor and over time increases that gap until the rich becomes so powerful that they essentially take over power from the government.

    This is the state where people start to work themselves to death. Because they're not part of a society that is gaining wealth as a collective but rather has become a new type of slave society. In this new type, people live in an illusion of existential value that they cannot distinguish from any other reality. People lose track of basic existential questions like love and death and replace them with a monetary valuation of status. People start to think they are in love with someone when they're basically just together with them because of the status it produces, they get children because that's a family status, and they have a certain job which is a further acquired status. In the age of the internet, this has also been intensified as people project these statuses out to people surrounding them, further blinding them into this system.

    This is the Baudrillardian horror, modern western capitalism has evolved into an unseen monster that people think is "quality life". It's so ingrained into our psychology that we're never even questioning how this life works. Everything we do is part of this capitalist mentality, everything is about some kind of status or monetary gain and loss, and the most obvious sign of this is how much more popular "quick fix" existential treatments have become. The desperate search for "meaning in all the chaos", without people understanding what that chaos really is.

    And so, some, like Marx, developed political philosophies that examined the inner workings of capitalism and alternatives to it. But Marx is also outdated since it focuses entirely on the industrial age of development, which had entirely different inner mechanics, especially lacking the Baudrillard perspective.

    With so many people in the world today, with such a technological explosion that the last 150 years have produced, it is impossible to maintain a society based on Marx's ideas and it's also impossible to maintain a society of modern capitalism. Because essentially any political philosophy regards the citizen as a cog in a machine, without essential value other than its function.

    If these cogs are changed into automation, into robots and we dislocate humans from the traditional machine, then that becomes an existence that has never been available on a large scale before. We are so ingrained in the idea of "work" that people don't know how to manage their time outside of it. It has, throughout history, either been about survival or monetary gain at its core and occasionally, for a few, been a place of meaning. But on a large scale, how can everyone find meaning?

    That is the core problem that philosophy and people need to solve when advanced automation starts to reshape society.
    Christoffer

    I need to take your post in smaller pieces. :lol: A weak brain you know. Let me begin with I love your post because it is mentally stimulating. I argue because that moves the discussion forward.

    "If these cogs are changed into automation, into robots and we dislocate humans from the traditional machine, then that becomes an existence that has never been available on a large scale before."

    You reminded me of a story about a White man going to the top of a mountain with a native American and looking down on a large city, with great pride the White man says, "before all this what did your people do?" The native American said, "we sang a lot". Our athletic games come from ancient times when people had time on their hands and a person could gain status by accomplishing physical feats. Civilizations had many gods and many festivals and we would do well to take the money out of our community events and get back to participating because that is what a community does. I used to love going to the fair with my children and we all entered something and won ribbons. Now the fair is a money-making event with no appeal to me at all! I don't want to see the newest and best pans or whatever. I want to see how my family compares with all the others.

    I was a homemaker. That means taking care of all the family needs using my domestic skills, and also participating in the community as a volunteer and sitting on decision-making committees. In a democracy, we should all experience committee work because that is where we learn on democracy works. In the past, I would have ground corn with other mothers and grandmothers and we would talk about how things are and how they should be, and what needs to be done. It is time for the strawberry festival, isn't it? What do you plan on bringing? I ramble and I may not have made a point, but I think there are still women who remember when life circled around our families and perhaps making music together. And planning for our community. :broken: Thank you for giving me a place to share what I value and to talk about democracy and achieve arete.

    "But on a large scale, how can everyone find meaning?" Everyone can turn to their family and if that is not a pleasant experience, turn to the community and act on your talents and interest. We the people, give us all meaning and purpose when we understand democracy and good citizenship. :heart:

    Your "Baudrillardian eldritch horror" has also been called "the beast." Even in ancient times, Rome was the beast consuming everything its citizens could give in exchange for bread and circus. I especially see this when the wealth of the nation depended on importing metals and gold, which required armies to secure that source of metal and gold, leading to military people coming to power and taxing the people into poverty as well as taking their sons to keep the beast healthy. I have a problem with Jesus saying to turn our backs on family and put God first. I think there are good reasons to put family and community first.
  • Vera Mont
    313
    I have a problem with Jesus saying to turn our backs on family and put God first. I think there are good reasons to put family and community first.Athena

    The Seventh Day Adventists and some other despised sects managed to balance both. So, oddly enough, have some Catholic monastic orders. In relatively small numbers (my guesstimate is, under 3000) groups of people can sort out their priorities and the division of labour in an equitable arrangement of some kind. Many kinds of arrangement can work.
    Don't blame Jesus for the craziness of Big Church; he was just giving a handful of discontented men an excuse to leave their lives of oppressed drudgery - neither the Abrahamic Judean state nor the Roman occupation gave them a lot of scope for personal meaning.
    It's the large organized religions, washing hands with the secular elites, that promoted uncontrolled fecundity, to ensure unlimited cheap labour and expendable armies for their wars.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    I did mention the world's debt-load - with three links to graphs illustrating it. That's what will the break capitalist system: it runs on the expectation of future growth. When expectation outruns the capability for growth, you get a recession or depression. Then the government has to step and recycle the assets. But now, the assets are not available to government: they've been block-chained and bit-coined and legerdemained out of reach.... if they ever existed in the physical world where people need food and shelter.
    Wars used to grow economies, both in the arming phase and the rebuilding phase, because people worked their asses off to produce munitions and supplies for the soldiers and the soldiers got paid and spent money and the war profiteers raked in the money and hired more people and invested in peactime construction.
    When you wage war on margin, you're gambling with your national economy. And when wars are waged not for territory and resources but hegemony, there is material return for the winning nation.

    n the future what will organize the people and how will that organization be maintained?
    — Athena
    Local war-lords. By force of arms. Except, they won't be able to get into the rich people's bunkers, which will be occupied by the late rich people's ex-servants, ruled by the self-promoted mercenaries.
    Vera Mont

    You speak of modern economic realities that I know very little about. I am sure that information is very important here. I googled an explanation of chain blocks and bookmarked it. I will need time to assimilate this new information. It is very foreign to me so I can not simply go from what I know to this new information.

    How does a government step in and recycle assets?

    "When you wage war on margin, you're gambling with your national economy. And when wars are waged not for territory and resources but hegemony, there is material return for the winning nation." should the word "no" go in that sentence, "there is no material return".

    Nations have fallen because of excessive military spending. I like Nintendo's original Gengis Khan game because you have to keep your economy balanced or you lose. We are highly aware of Rome's military expenses leading to increased taxes that hurt the economy.

    The neocons wanted military control of the mid-east, which would mean more affordable oil for the US and high profits for oil companies. This requires a partnership with the government that pays for the wars and supplies the military personnel while companies like Haliburton get extremely rich supplying the military needs. That is the Military Industrial Complex. Our economy benefits only if the cost of gasoline stays low. If we don't get that cheap oil, we have a Roman situation of destroying our economy by taxing the people too much to pay for the acquisition of resources. Higher taxes and higher prices for oil and everything dependent on oil, are crushing us. We have not lived with finite reality very well.

    The future you speak of is possible but this last election in the US gives me more hope for democracy than I did have. I seriously need to give time to look into education in my community. If democracy is not learned our democracy is not protected and I am not sure we are doing a good job of preparing our young for democracy. I think if we are serious about defending our democracy, we also need to get serious about replacing the autocratic model of the industry with the democratic model.

    I have been watching old western TV shows and they are terrible! Again and again, the shows are about people with guns and rifles having power and those who are inept with the gun or rifle are the losers. Star Trek's Captain Kirk is the John Wayne of outer space, and the new Star Trek Generation is "group think" and less individualistic. We need a balance of individualism and "group think". Do we want a future that is ruled by a force of arms and self-promoted mercenaries?
  • Athena
    2.3k
    It's the large organized religions, washing hands with the secular elites, that promoted uncontrolled fecundity, to ensure unlimited cheap labour and expendable armies for their wars.Vera Mont

    Oh, oh, I think we are getting further and further off the topic of labor and technology, however, when Billy Graham, the Evangelical leader, met with Eisenhower, we could liken that moment in time with Constantine announcing he saw a cross in the sky and said the Christian god would make it possible for Rome to win wars, and he made Christianity a legal religion in Rome. We got "in god we trust" on our money and "One nation under God" was put in our pledge of allegiance and we all knew we had to save the world from those godless people in the USSR. Now we believe a book about kings and slaves taught us about democracy, evidently forgetting the Bible is what made the power of those born into royalty legitimate.

    God is good for wars and wars are good for God. Except for the Greeks. Those oddballs didn't think highly of a god of war and they were too retarded to have an empire. Although they did colonize much of the known world. :chin: And when we want wisdom and culture we do turn to them.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    If you can't have "decided principles" through religion, then the principles need to have a rational, logical, and empathic core that automatically makes people gravitate toward that logical good as doing otherwise would lead to misery. A truly liberal society free from religion requires the people to understand morality as a system that is logical and not decided upon them.Christoffer



    In the past gods and goddesses were connected with nature and that means they had to be kept happy or bad things would happen. Today this is environmental science. We understand the forces differently, but both, are understanding doing the right thing has good consequences and doing the wrong thing has bad consequences.

    As scientific as we think we are, we are doing a very poor job of living with finite reality and each other. Christianity is part of the problem because Christians ignored the wisdom of aboriginal people. Christians rejected the notion that Gia, our planet, is a living organism that we must take care of and we destroyed the environment for many years and created an economy dependent on oil, knowing in the 1920s that this was a bad idea. We have ourselves completely disconnected from the rhythms of our planet and the heavens.

    I believe spirituality is a vital part of having mentally and physically healthy lives. I am a part of something much bigger than myself and what I do or do not does matters. Science gives us better information about what should and should not be done than the mythology a religion built on a belief in miracles!

    The Greeks asked, how do the gods resolve their differences. They answered, the gods argue until there is a consensus on the best reasoning. That is science, and democracy is an imitation of the gods.
    It is also the meaning of logos, reason, the controlling force of the universe. Science looks for the reason, not the reasoner, and our judgment must depend on good reasoning, because the reasoner is not going to clean up the messes we make, nor give us a new planet to screw up. This is unless we believe the destruction of Florida (by water) and California (by fire) are the work of God and not a man-made problem. How different are we from the ancients who tried to appease a god when a natural disaster hit?
  • Vera Mont
    313
    You speak of modern economic realities that I know very little about.Athena

    I wouldn't bother too much about the mechanisms whereby money is moved around and hidden away: they change almost daily, to stay ahead of international law-enforcement and monitoring agencies. The point is that capital is mobile while government (and its ability to levy tax) and the work-force (not so much citizens as 'human resources') are stationary.

    How does a government step in and recycle assets?Athena
    Regulation, tax reform, public works, welfare legislation. https://www.loc.gov/classroom-materials/united-states-history-primary-source-timeline/great-depression-and-world-war-ii-1929-1945/franklin-delano-roosevelt-and-the-new-deal/ Similar measures were taken by the Bennett government in Canada. In some other countries, of course, the political upheaval knocked down existing regimes.

    I think if we are serious about defending our democracy, we also need to get serious about replacing the autocratic model of the industry with the democratic model.Athena

    The trouble is, not enough of you (and not enough of us, either) are serious enough about it to stop the large minority that are eager to destroy it outright. The destroyers have a huge advantage: they're never hampered by truth, principles or scruples.

    Do we want a future that is ruled by a force of arms and self-promoted mercenaries?Athena

    It doesn't much matter what 'we' want. They are what is.

    Oh, oh, I think we are getting further and further off the topic of labor and technology,Athena

    Not really. Big Religion, like Big Business, is in the business of enriching and enlarging itself through its control of governments and populations. It reinforces the authority of the ruling elite and trains the peons to know their place and obey their betters, as wells the aforementioned boostership of overpopulation and subjugation of women.

    Greeks. Those oddballs didn't think highly of a god of war and they were too retarded to have an empire. Although they did colonize much of the known world.Athena

    That sounds suspiciously like an empire to me.
  • Vera Mont
    313
    new Star Trek Generation is "group think" and less individualistic.Athena

    I know it's off topic, but as an SF aficionado, I have to defend the Star Trek personnel. Starfleet is a military organization, with a chain of command and uniforms and all that, (and Kirk was a bit of a maverick) They're not supposed to be independent individuals. There is plenty of individualism and scholarship in the civilian population of their time, as well as entrepreneurship - just no money used in the Federation.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    How does a government step in and recycle assets?
    — Athena
    Regulation, tax reform, public works, welfare legislation. https://www.loc.gov/classroom-materials/united-states-history-primary-source-timeline/great-depression-and-world-war-ii-1929-1945/franklin-delano-roosevelt-and-the-new-deal/ Similar measures were taken by the Bennett government in Canada. In some other countries, of course, the political upheaval knocked down existing regimes.

    I think if we are serious about defending our democracy, we also need to get serious about replacing the autocratic model of the industry with the democratic model.
    — Athena

    The trouble is, not enough of you (and not enough of us, either) are serious enough about it to stop the large minority that are eager to destroy it outright. The destroyers have a huge advantage: they're never hampered by truth, principles or scruples.
    Vera Mont

    Okay, I am not sure but I suspect people who have the same information tend to agree and that disagreements are the result of not having the same information.

    I am going to start with quotes
    This is to get a laugh and lift our spirits....

    An intellectual is a person who's found one thing that's more interesting than sex. Aldous Huxley
    Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/aldous-huxley-quotes+

    Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. Aldous Huxley Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/aldous-huxley-quotes

    Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. Aldous Huxley Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/aldous-huxley-quotes

    Great is truth, but still greater, from a practical point of view, is silence about truth. By simply not mentioning certain subjects... totalitarian propagandists have influenced opinion much more effectively than they could have by the most eloquent denunciations.
    Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/aldous-huxley-quotes

    In the past, personal and political liberty depended to a considerable extent upon governmental inefficiency. The spirit of tranny was always more than willing; but its organization and material equipment were generally weak. Progressive science and technology have changed all this completely. Aldous Huxley That is certainly true about Eisenhower's warning of the Military Industrial Complex.

    Now back to Roosevelt and the New Deal. Hoover and Roosevelt worked together to give us a fascist form of government. That is leaving property in the hands of private owners, but regulating industry. WWII intensified the new relationship between government and industry because government contracts were greatly increased, bringing us to the Military Industrial Complex Eisenhower warned us about. Eisenhower could have put the Military Industrial Complex in place without the bureaucratic organization that Roosevelt and Hoover gave us and because we do not talk about the bureaucratic and then education change and the Military Industrial Complex, none of that exists in the minds of citizens.

    However, in a college text about Public Policy and Administration, it is mentioned that the US adopted the German model of bureaucracy and this shifts power and authority from individuals to the beast, the governmental bureaucracy over the people. This bureaucratic organization begins with the Prussians and is what made Germany strong enough to engage the allies in war.

    Now during Eisenhower's administration, he asked congress to support the National Defense Education Act and replaced our Domestic Education (education for good moral judgment without religion, and the culture that made liberty possible) with education for a technological society with unknown values and that brings us to where we are today.

    People know fascism for the horrors committed by Nazis, and I have a book for teachers explaining how they should treat every child exactly the same, and they should be impersonal. At all levels of bureaucracy, policy demands being impersonal and a person can be fired for violating policy. What rules, is policy not individual moral judgment. We were sold this reasoning on the idea that it is more efficient. We mostly are totally unaware of the bureaucratic and educational changes and what that has to do with what is happening today.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    I know it's off topic, but as an SF aficionado, I have to defend the Star Trek personnel. Starfleet is a military organization, with a chain of command and uniforms and all that, (and Kirk was a bit of a maverick) They're not supposed to be independent individuals. There is plenty of individualism and scholarship in the civilian population of their time, as well as entrepreneurship - just no money used in the Federation.Vera Mont

    Okay, I love the original Star Trek, and if you can watch and compare the original Star Trek with the Next Generation. The original Star Trek comes from education before 1958, for independent thinking and good moral judgment. The Next Generation comes with the change in education and "group think". While some may think the group thinkers are good for democracy, they might want to think about China and about our reactionary politics and the very biased media we have today.

    Star Trek frequently had the theme of a computer-run society. We have a computer-run society now but don't see it that is humans controlled by policy. The National Defense Education Act shifted the purpose of education and who makes the education decisions. Even if we threw all our weapons into the sea, we are organized by policies set by others, and not family order and independent thinkers.

    A democracy which makes or even effectively prepares for modern, scientific war must necessarily cease to be democratic. No country can be really well prepared for modern war unless it is governed by a tyrant, at the head of a highly trained and perfectly obedient bureaucracy. Aldous Huxley
    Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/aldous-huxley-quotes

    Our effort to establish a base on the moon is being presented as an idealist challenge for the glory of mankind, not as a desperate star wars race for the control of the moon and whose missiles will be there. We have gone beyond fear of a nuclear bomb to star wars and I don't mean the movie but the reality of controlling missile bases and satellites. Our high-tech military is very vulnerable because it does not work without our satellites that can be taken out with the same technology of hitting an asteroid off course.

    NASA says China wants to control the Moon in shocking claimhttps://tech.hindustantimes.com › tech › news › nasa-sa...
    Jul 20, 2022 — NASA is concerned that China might control the entire Moon. China has sped up its target of building a research base on the Moon within eight ...
  • Athena
    2.3k
    h that's a shame. Perhaps you are the new enlightened family member that shows them how the world works and how to empower themselves to lead a more fruitful life?

    Education can be be recieved from others or from the self (through rigorous/thorough and balanced observation - all things considered).

    We ought to listen to wise teachers. And when our wisdom parallels or overcomes theirs, we ought to offer it in turn to those less educated. It's our duty to give those tools to the ones without them, level the playing field as it were. Restore the balance to avoid exploitation.
    Benj96

    Heavens no! I wish but the last thing the young want is advice from an old person. Books advise grandmas to hold their tongues and experience has taught me the wisdom of what they say.

    There was a time when a great-grandson was my best buddy. Then he became a teenager and I told him I was losing him and he sweetly said, "I will always love you." That was a long ago and we haven't spoken much since then. I used to have so much fun with the great-grandchildren. We went on adventures and did science in my kitchen. I still can't let go of the things I had for them. I am hoping to pass the really good stuff on to another great-grandson when he is old enough.

    I am not sure we can turn the clocks back to when grandparents were more important than technology has made them. Our whole culture has changed. We are much more materialistic than we once were and our children are exposed to so much and are pushed so hard in school that they don't have the time to just be children.

    In responding to Vera Mont I felt aware of how drastically military technology has changed us. I don't like to think about that but denying our changed reality is not a good thing. Even when we entered WWII we thought our best military advantage was our patriotism and our individual judgment. That is what we educated for but the technology of WWII changed all that. In the past, it took us a year to mobilize for war. Today we can enter a war and do more damage in four hours than several troops could have done in several months. Our patriotism is no longer needed. We can wage wars without disturbing our morning routine. That is not how it was in the past and with enemies like China, I don't think we can ever again demobilize as we once did after every war. We are as focused on war as the Prussians who lived for the love of war as much as the US lived for the love of God and family.
  • Vera Mont
    313
    We are as focused on war as the Prussians who lived for the love of war as much as the US lived for the love of God and family.Athena

    When was this? In which decades of its existence was the US not engaged in any armed conflict?
  • Vera Mont
    313
    Now back to Roosevelt and the New Deal. Hoover and Roosevelt worked together to give us a fascist form of government. That is leaving property in the hands of private owners, but regulating industry.Athena

    Not until after the capitalists broke all their toys and a millions of lives. I don't think they could have nationalized industry - or very much else - given the popular mind-set. Obviously, what call fascism is not quite congruent with my definition.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    When was this? In which decades of its existence was the US not engaged in any armed conflict?Vera Mont

    I expected that reaction. Unfortunately, I can not copy and paste the charts of US military spending and I hope people follow the link and take a good look at the US commitment to war and military force. Our past commitment to military spending was nothing compared to what it is now. This is a huge change, huge! Please look at the charts. The US was known for its resistance to war, not the power of its military force.

    Big War Spikes
    There have been four major spikes in US defense spending since the 1790s.

    Big Spikes in Defense Spending

    Chart 2.33: Big Spikes in Defense Spending

    Viewed across the two centuries of US power, defense spending shows four spikes. It spiked at nearly 12 percent of GDP in the Civil War of the 1860s (not including spending by the rebels). It spiked at 22 percent in World War I. It spiked at 41 percent in World War II, and again at nearly 15 percent of GDP during the Korean War.

    Defense spending exceeded 10 percent of GDP for one year in the 19th century and 19 years in the 20th century. The last year in which defense spending hit 10 percent of GDP was 1968 at the height of the Vietnam War.

    The peak of defense spending during the Iraq conflict was 5.66 percent GDP in 2010.
    Christopher Chantrill

    The founding fathers of the US feared standing armies and intentionally made it difficult for the US to go to war and they gave citizens control of the purse strings.
    This is part of the US constitution....
    Article I, Section 8, Clause 12:

    [The Congress shall have Power . . . ] To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years; . . .
    [/quote]

    And I offer this evidence that the US was not interested in being the military power it is today...

    https://www.nixonlibrary.gov/news/war-powers-resolution-1973#

    War Powers Resolution of 1973

    “...to fulfill the intent of the framers of the Constitution...and insure that the collective judgment of both the Congress and the President will apply to the introduction of United States Armed Forces into hostilities."

    The War Powers Resolution of 1973 (also known as the War Powers Act) "is a congressional resolution designed to limit the U.S. president’s ability to initiate or escalate military actions abroad.” As part of our system of governmental “checks and balances,” the law aims to check the executive branch’s power when committing U.S. military forces to an armed conflict without the consent of the U.S. Congress. It stipulates the president must notify Congress within 48 hours of military action and prohibits armed forces from remaining for more than 60 days.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    Not until after the capitalists broke all their toys and a millions of lives. I don't think they could have nationalized industry - or very much else - given the popular mind-set. Obviously, what call fascism is not quite congruent with my definition.Vera Mont

    How did the capitalists break the system? I think our economy goes up and down in relation to the supply of oil and its demand, the same as Rome's economy went up or down in relation to its supply of gold. Both of these economic swings are tied to military expenses. Advancing technology increases military expenses and that starts to hurt the taxpayers. That is a big problem with standing armies. If your economy depends on having military might, because the source of gold or oil you need is under the control of another nation, you have to have a good economy.

    Prussians came to see the economy as a very important part of modern warfare, and for that definition of fascism...

    Fascism
    In terms of economics, fascism incorporates elements of both capitalism and socialism. Fascist economists advocate for self-sufficiency and individual profit, but promote government subsidies of corporations. Fascist economics thus supports a blend of both private and public ownership over the means of production—there is an emphasis on private profit, but at the same time, the national interest is ultimately more important.
    https://home.heinonline.org/blog/2020/07/capitalism-socialism-or-fascism-a-guide-to-economic-systems-and-ideologies/
  • Vera Mont
    313
    Unfortunately, I can not copy and paste the charts of US military spendingAthena

    I didn't ask about spending. I asked about involvement. https://freakonometrics.hypotheses.org/50473 15 or so years of peace since independence. And that doesn't include land disputes, water disputes, incursions into Mexican territory, cattlemen vs sheep-men, black ops, "advisory roles", clandestine arming of hostile factions and coups, missile-rattling that didn't break into a shooting war...
    America was never about family and God! It's always been about wealth, power and conflict.

    The spending boondoggles are just capitalism cashing in on militarism. What would you expect? When money's there for the taking, they'll take it.

    And I offer this evidence that the US was not interested in being the military power it is today...Athena
    That's right. Not at first. The ambitions grew with the successes; since the Monroe Doctrine, their scope and reach kept growing until they were a World Power, Big Four, Policeman of the World, NATO boss, The West, the top banana. That's expensive. Especially when you start losing.
    How did the capitalists break the system?Athena

    They kept speculating on the stock market until they created a Great Depression.
    I think our economy goes up and down in relation to the supply of oil and its demand...Athena
    Do you really? How did demand for oil cause the 1929 market crash?

    Well, whatever the truth of that, teaching children as if it were still 1955 just won't get them through automation, pandemic, population displacement and climate change.
  • Benj96
    1.3k
    I wish but the last thing the young want is advice from an old person. Books advise grandmas to hold their tongues and experience has taught me the wisdom of what they say.Athena

    Well I think a grandma has something no book or information source or technology has, and that's personalised/individual knowledge of, and care for, their grandchildren. The people that know us best - our strengths and weakeness, are family, right?

    A grandchild can be as knowledgeable a book worm as they like in life but if they don't feel cared for, listened to, in this individualistic, materialist society they are growing up in then I'd imagine theyd feel pretty lonely and isolated.

    I never feel lonely when I'm with my grandmother. Yes she may not have the most up to date experience with advancing cultural changes and tech, but what she lacks in that sphere of knowledge she makes up for on good old fashioned life lessons.
    The more fundamental truth of things doesnt change with time otherwise it wouldn't be the truth of the matter would it? And wisdom I guess is being able to define those same base values in a system or society that is forever changing.

    That is something my grandmother is good at. I can give her the most complex headache of a situation where I can't make out the wood from the trees.
    And she will whittle it down to one or two most profound yet simple questions and the clarity one gets from that can't be found in the vast majority of books.

    My advice would be don't underestimate yourself :)
  • Athena
    2.3k
    The people that know us best - our strengths and weaknesses, are family, right?Benj96

    No, unfortunately, other things are happening. It seems the instinctual drive is social acceptance and status with one's peers. Also, it is common for young mothers to want distance from their mothers and heaven's forbid grandmas should give advice about raising children! Our wisdom gained by years of working with children, reevaluating ourselves, and seeing our youthful mistakes, are not appreciated! The research on mother-daughter relationships is new and I like what this one says. https://ct.counseling.org/2020/01/uncovering-the-root-cause-of-mother-daughter-conflict/
    "I have concluded that society sets mothers and daughters up for conflict." I think that is especially so with the social changes we have been through.

    This thread is about technology and employment but it very much could technology and family relationships and changed social order. I very much blame education for a technological society for the breakdown of the family and parent/child conflicts.

    On the other hand, statistically, children who have involved grandparents have an advantage over those who don't. But during the teen years, grandparents tend to be unappreciated. Some of my friends have told me when the young adult gets older the relationship can become a good one again.

    A grandchild can be as knowledgeable a book worm as they like in life but if they don't feel cared for, listened to, in this individualistic, materialist society they are growing up in then I'd imagine theyd feel pretty lonely and isolated.Benj96

    Oh yes, I am quite sure that is true. But it is not just the children and grandparents having this problem. Education for technology and what technology has done to our lives is hurting all relationships, and once in a while it has improved relationships! I love to see a father in the park with his children. I am hoping men will become better husbands and fathers. For bloody sure autocratic industrialization that took the father out of the home and held him in a hierarchy of power and exploited the laborer, harmed families as much as slavery did. Technology has taken the mother out of the home too. If the father is an active father, the technological family may do even better than in the past, If the father is not in the home, or is not helping in the home and with the children, things are worse. Our women have the freedom of barbarians and I do not mean that as a compliment.

    The more fundamental truth of things doesnt change with time otherwise it wouldn't be the truth of the matter would it? And wisdom I guess is being able to define those same base values in a system or society that is forever changing.Benj96

    Now that is a true philosophical statement. I love it! :heart: I have to go to work. I will ponder what you said and look forward to getting back to you.
  • Benj96
    1.3k
    heaven's forbid grandmas should give advice about raising childrenAthena

    Well they managed to raise their own daughters and sons. So if a mother thinks she turned out okay some of that is at the very least a credit to their own parenting. A grandmother is a tried and tested testament to parenting.

    Dont get me wrong I undertand that a daughter wants to prove her own worth as a mother. That's natural.

    But I think it would be foolish not to take heade at least in part from her own mothers concerns. Raising children is a group effort. Especially when everyone's intentions are wholesome and with the childs best wishes at heart. You may have your differences for sure. But of course you have similarities too which ought not be dismissed.

    . I am hoping men will become better husbands and fathers.Athena

    Yes absolutely it's the right hope to have. And I agree industrialisation and demands on men these days make it seem exceedingly difficult to Juggle family responsibilities and work ethic simultaneously. Employers need to respect down time. A concept that is not conducive to pure capitalism.

    Our women have the freedom of barbarians and I do not mean that as a compliment.Athena

    Well I think it's a wonderful thing that mothers can now participate as true bread winners for the family, it must be incredibly empowering, almost on a par with the husband if not in some cases exceedingly so depending on their respective professions. But someone has to take care of the childers.

    Its a fine balance indeed. I would personally be happy for a wife to succeed in her career while I raise the children. And I think that dynamic is increasing. A long awaited one.

    Now that is a true philosophical statement. I love it! :heart: I have to go to work. I will ponder what you said and look forward to getting back to you.Athena

    I look forward to it also Athena :) all the best at work and we shall chat soon again!
  • Athena
    2.3k
    America was never about family and God! It's always been about wealth, power and conflict.Vera Mont

    I think you are speaking of a very small percentage of the US population. I believe 100% that the great majority of US citizens were about family and most of them worked for very low wages, like my grandmother who was a teacher, and my mother who was a keypunch operator. Of course, being a teacher was much more meaningful to my grandmother's generation of teachers who thought they were defending our democracy in the classroom. Being a keypunch operator was just a way of paying rent and putting food on the table. I did not know my father until I was 18 and he 100% stood for the idea that women stay home and care for the family and the man supports the family. He did not get rich but as an engineer, but he certainly earned more than the women.

    Not until women's liberation did women have equal rights to education and job opportunities. All economic and social factors assured we stayed home and cared for our families. Some women became teachers or nurses and they were not paid well. The increase in wages for women is amazing when compared to the past. But no one earned that much until after WWII. Fortunately, housing didn't cost that much and one wage was enough to support most families.

    Your bias on what is important military information discourages me in discussing the military situation with you. I think it is a mistake to believe things are as they always were for the US.
  • Vera Mont
    313
    Your bias on what is important military information discourages me in discussing the military situation with you. I think it is a mistake to believe things are as they always were for the US.Athena

    Likewise.
  • Athena
    2.3k
    The more fundamental truth of things doesnt change with time otherwise it wouldn't be the truth of the matter would it? And wisdom I guess is being able to define those same base values in a system or society that is forever changing.Benj96

    Back to your statement. What is the truth we are talking about? We are in dangerous territory now because what is true in one culture may not be true in another culture. What may be true at one point in history may not be true at another point in history.

    In the past wisdom of elders was appreciated but with our technology today, who asks anything of a grandparent instead of going online to get the information? You know a teacher will value online research more than what a grandparent says. Oh, oh and painfully oh, often people do not agree about history. Were we White folk justified in enforcing segregation? In Isreal, you can be sure the Jews do not tell their children history the same way the Palestinians remember that history. These are very touchy things and we come to these truths with our different perspectives.

    The challenge is to state a truth that is everyone's truth. You know what I mean? I think that is a huge challenge.

    I have checked what I said about culture and grandparents. I was surprised to find so much information and enjoyed reading different reports. I need to check with my library about getting more information from the published papers.
bold
italic
underline
strike
code
quote
ulist
image
url
mention
reveal
youtube
tweet
Add a Comment

Welcome to The Philosophy Forum!

Get involved in philosophical discussions about knowledge, truth, language, consciousness, science, politics, religion, logic and mathematics, art, history, and lots more. No ads, no clutter, and very little agreement — just fascinating conversations.