I think i more or less agree. Modern religion is having a hard time trying to prove that any "supernatural" event and/or being isn't anything more than any other natural phenomenon that we currently experience but just beyond how we currently understand them. In other words it is a given that things that we considered to be gods, "God", etc. always have some little man hiding behind a curtain pulling levers masquerading to be something beyond our world yelling at us to not look behind the curtain.I believe I already mentioned this before.
Supernatural, interpreted as something extraordinary, elecits/begs one of two responses:
1. Revision of our theories pertaining to the supernatural event: Science [we could be wrong, back to the basics].
2. Maintaining the theories pertaining to the supernatural event, but hypothesizing an entity/being that caused the supernatural event: Religion [we're right, but now there's something else, god(s)] — Agent Smith
The natural order of things more or less maintains that EVERYTHING that exists has to obey certain laws. If something was able to do things that broke these laws it would be something beyond the way we currently understand them. However even if we didn't understand how such phenomenon worked it wouldn't necessarily mean that they are "supernatural".“Supernatural” means above and beyond the natural world. It’s a valid, internally consistent concept. It’s also an empty, useless concept because we do not know the limits of the natural. We do not possess the means of verifying that some phenomenon is, in fact, above and beyond the natural world.
We have yet to discover all that is possible. We may believe phenomena such as lightning, walking on water, riding a winged horse, or rising from the dead are phenomena beyond nature, but we cannot know it. In the past, we might have believed someone in Africa could not have a real-time conversation with someone in South America. We might have believed that we would never be able to ask a tiny handheld box for directions home. Today, mobile phones routinely perform both tasks.
Old Theology ontologies often include supernatural beings and places: Gods and demons, heaven and hell, Bodhisattvas and nirvana. New Theology has no use for the concept of the supernatural. Until we know for certain the limits of the natural universe, we cannot know if something is beyond its limits. — Art48
To the best of human knowledge (at the present time) "God" ,as he is defined by Abrahamic religions, does not exist. Why this is would require a very lengthy discussion which is a bit beyond this thread but if need an explanation I suggest creating another thread to address this issue.To demonstrate, here are some attempts at questions/ observations I think do have substantial interest.
What is generally understood, and what do I specifically understand, by the concept of God, and why? — SatmBopd
"Morality" as well as "good/evil" are just mental projection we create in order to rationalize why we do certain actions instead of others. In a nutshell, it is merely a tool we use in order to help us survive an beyond that it really doesn't have meaning.What phenomena is morality trying to comprehend/ address? Is it possible to comprehend/ address these phenomena in other/ better ways? — SatmBopd
You have your religious beliefs or system of beliefs and other people have theirs. If you can understand other peoples system of beliefs (religious or otherwise) as well as they understand them then they are somewhat reconcilable. How you go about this is a bit up to you.What are the differences between my worldview and others’? Are these differences reconcilable? How or why not? — SatmBopd
One can understand the current limitations of humanity to some degree, but it is pretty much a given that we can not answer what the limitations of humanity either hundreds or thousands of years from now since we don't know what technology or information will be available to human beings at that time. When one is presented with issues which require knowledge that is not available all one can do is simply understand that such questions do not have answers.What is the furthest extent of the capacities/ limitations of humanity? — SatmBopd
I don't know much about Post-Modern philosophy, but I think this is a question that is brought up in such discussions. I can't say that you will find the answers you seek if you study such a subject but it is the only things I can think of at the moment.What are the capacities/ limitations of argumentation/ philosophy? Is there anything else that can exceed these capacities/ limitations? — SatmBopd
I think part of the issue is that it is nearly impossible for someone to change their point of view even when they are faced with information that shows contradictions in one's thinking. In fact it is usually only possible after they have faced the same or similar contradictions several times and only then if they are opened minded enough to question their own thinking. I helps to understand that it often takes months or years for someone to become indoctrinated with any given view so it is more or less a given that in order for someone to overcome it it would take a process that is almost as time consumingExcellent points, all.
In a rational world, that so many people of such divergent views can recognize how silly an argument is would give the proponent pause — and perhaps be inclined to open his mind to new vistas.
I’d like to think an old dog can learn new tricks. I’m proven wrong again and again. — Xtrix
Yeah, when I read that it kind of made my head spin as well. It looks like NOS4A2 is willing to blame people in the State for being willing and going through with the selling of political influence to the uber wealthy while at the same time thinks that the uber wealthy are blameless in such transactions because it is merely what the wealthy "do".The reason The Wealthy purchase or influence power is because the people with power are selling it.
Imagine actually believing this.
Put yourself in these shoes and consider it.
Frightening, isn’t it? — Xtrix
Laissez faire: cover for corporatism. — Xtrix
You should probably double check what that word means. — NOS4A2
That is what it means. — Xtrix
:up:If anyone in a discussion with us is not concerned with adjusting himself to truth, if he has no wish to find the truth, he is intellectually a barbarian. That, in fact, is the position of the mass-man when he speaks, lectures or writes. — Jose Ortega y Gasset - The Revolt of the Masses - p.72, footnote 1
This is just more of the same Ayn Rand type BS you have already been spouting.The reason The Wealthy purchase or influence power is because the people with power are selling it. If the state didn’t have that power The Wealthy wouldn’t be able to purchase it. The Wealthy do not have the power you claim they do until the people with power afford it to them, and even then it’s just the promise that the state will use its power to benefit The Wealthy. — NOS4A2
Which is really no power. The only time the poor has real power is when things are so bad that they start working together collectively and stop relying on those with money or in the state to tell them what to do. Of course I imagine someone like you would call that socialism which of course is even a bigger evil then your so called "State"The Poor, with no wealth, can only purchase or influence power through less-costly means such as voting or protest. — NOS4A2
What conveniently forgetting with your Ayn Rand type rhetoric is the uber wealthy elites already have immense power over the plebs and wage slaves that serve them and with their easy access to money it is much, much easier for them to influence politicians then it is for the poor.Both seek to influence power, actual power. Both desire the same ends: to use state power to benefit their preferred group of beneficiaries. — NOS4A2
Again, I don't know what you have against cops but whatever it is it is likely unfounded. Police officers are mostly there to act as arbitrators in whatever disputes or crimes in the communities they serve and have to work in and obey the law just as much as the citizens they are there to serve and protect. Without their service (just as many ways the soldiers in the US military) you wouldn't have the freedom right now to speak your mind and spout your anti-cop nonsense and insult them.A police officer has the legal right to use force against you. The bureaucrat has the legal right take your children, your home, your wages. They can put you in prison. I don’t think any other class of people has that sort of power in the statist system. — NOS4A2
:up:Methinks the OP is onto something really important. It happened to Christianity. Church Councils were convened in which Christian doctrines were adopted not by argumentation but by vote (argumentum ad populum). The next generation of theologians then went to work on these tenets, reasoning backwards to axioms that would support them. This is just a hypothesis of course; cum grano salis. Modern psychology has a term for this: rationalization! — Agent Smith
:up:Maybe you really are just too dense to get the point being made, so I'll bite and state it explicitly:
Corporations are run undemocratically. Unlike the government. To argue the former is OK and the latter not because the former is associated with "voluntarily" is simplistic, in the same way that arguing one is "voluntarily" associating with a state is also simplistic.
Millions of people have to work, otherwise they starve and become homeless. When you're poor, you take a job anywhere. This is why Amazon moves their facilities to places like Bessemer, Alabama or to a poor country. Paying people meager wages, giving them no say in what happens within the company, and hoarding 90% of the profits they all help to generate is unjust. At least on par with an income tax.
The problem is that you're too sick to see any of this, and find a way to bring it back to the state or ignore the problem outright. — Xtrix
You are misinterpreting my posts. Pretty much every time I talk about the uber wealthy doing whatever they want, I'm careful to include those who also are also in a positions of power. The simple reason is power that comes through wealth or power that comes from other means isn't really all that different. While you may think they are different or think that I consider them different, it is not what I believe. It is kind of moot how one obtains power once they start abusing it compared to the fact that they are abusing it.Putin is the leader of a state. Yours is an example of an agent of the state getting away with such activity. But the phrase “the wealthy” also applies to people who are not agents of the state. — NOS4A2
Your incredibly naïve if you actually believe that any middle-class cop in the US can easily throw someone like Elon Musk in jail. For one thing, people like Elon Musk have something like an army of lawyers to help get him out of jail for whatever reason and if a cop trying to arrest him does anything wrong it could likely end his career.Elon Musk, for example, doesn’t have the monopoly on violence, and any middle-class cop can toss him in jail should he break a rule. — NOS4A2
I'm having trouble imaging why one of the richest men in the US would want to try to have a shoot out with any cop as well as why any cop would want to shoot at such a person. Is it because you think cops have too much power because they are allowed to carry and use guns if need be or is it because you think that too many cops are just sociopaths that join the police force in order so they can get a chance to go out and shoot people.If the richest man in America and the poorest cop in America were to draw guns and point them at each other, which one could shoot the other and be applauded for doing so? — NOS4A2
Big deal, so there may be many people that work for the government who are merely pencil pushers that are not wealthy and are not that wealthy. Do you think these people have some kind of power that the rest of us have or are they merely underlings of people who either have more power and/or wealth then themselves.It’s true, I do not equate the wealthy with the state because there are plenty non-wealthy, middle to low-class people who are agents of it. Similarly, not every wealthy person is an agent of the state. — NOS4A2
I hate to say it but you all arguments/posts do seem incredibly naïve to me since your talking about some kind of imaginary "State" which supposedly has all the power to do anything they want, and that the uber-wealthy/ultra-powerful people who get their wealth/powerful from somewhere else are as powerless as the rest of us to do anything about it.You keep telling me things are a given but on closer examination we find they are not, and are in fact the opposite of the case. It makes all this condescending language about my thinking and naivety all the more precious. — NOS4A2
I take in a lot of information daily and all of it I hear and understand, even if it is incorrect.
I cannot justifiably say any claim is NOT data, nor can I say it's data that points to a precise meaning, therefore all claims are justifiable.
I mean, what is printed here may be all I want you to hear, but any fray may give an imperfect address.
If you are uninformed laterally in all cases, is any case residual?
If a person means more than what they say, can a claim ever be justified?
But not all art is interpreted the right way... — Varde
This is a paradox one might come across if they consider God's omnipotence. If the answer is yes, then there is one thing he can't do (lift a heavy enough rock), which contradicts the definition of omnipotence (being able to do anything). The same applies if the answer is no. How would you solve this paradox? — Cidat
That is easy, In 2003, Putin arrested and froze Mikhail Khodorkovsky assets. In order to keep the same thing from happening to them other Russian oligarchs handed over a large sum of their own assets to Putin himself. This single act made Putin one of the richest/powerful people on the planet and few people even know the entire sum of what he really owns.We can compare our naivety. If I’m so naive on the topic it should be easy for you to name a wealthy person who has committed murder and violence “just as much as the State has”; or name one wealthy person in Russia or China who has arrested someone and confiscated his wealth. I can give countless examples of States engaging in such behavior. — NOS4A2
It’s a good thing there are compassionate, not-so-wealthy people such as yourself out there spending your efforts to help the elderly, disabled, the poor etc. to compensate for the lack of wealthy concern. But in effect you’re not helping, but advocating that the state and the wealthy—others—should help the poor wherever you refuse to. Equating compassion with tax-paying and statism is one of the greatest evils in the history of mankind, in my opinion. — NOS4A2
If this is what you believe then your really naïve since it is pretty much a given that those who have enough wealth/power can often commit murder (or more likely get someone else to do it for them so they don't have to get their own hands dirty) and violence just as much as the state can. Often the people running the state are mere puppets of those who are already wealthy and who have power and will start wars, jail, and/or prosecute those who cause problems that are wealthy. While it might sound like a "nice" idea for people who share your views to get rid of all state and government entities and just let the uber rich just do what they want, but that would merely make matters worse and turn such countries/governments into autocracies or neo-feudalism which is basically what has happened in China and Russia where the uber wealthy/powerful can arrest people for whatever reason and/or confiscate whatever wealth anyone for merely being labeled a terrorist/enemy of the state.The wealthy don’t posses the monopoly on violence. The state does. The state, not the wealthy, can murder you in the street with impunity, throw you in jail, or confiscate your wealth. . — NOS4A2
While slavery may be illegal in most Western countries, there are still many uber wealthy people that still have enough resources to buy and have slaves. Without any governments to make it illegal to have slaves the uber wealthy can easily turn anyone they want into slaves if they wish to do so.Slavery is still legal in the United States constitution, for example, so long the slave is the property of the American justice system. But if you’re fine with being controlled by politicians and bureaucrats, and those politicians and bureaucrats turn out to operate in the service of the wealthy, I guess that’s just too bad. — NOS4A2
I guess then you have never be poor and/or out of work and have had to try and find a way to make ends met. Or have ever be rob, ever have had to drive a car, go to a public school, or have ever had a medical issues that was too expensive for you to pay for. Without a income there are many elderly, disabled, etc people that can not survive without some kind of subsidy to help them pay for what they need and you have to be incredibly dumb (or incredibly insolated from the rest of the world) not to understand that they many of the most wealthiest people out there would rather see such people die than have to spend money to help them.I’m not sure why any community requires the wealthy or the state to help them. It’s not “a given” that this should be so. But I can go to any large city in North America, wherever the state is at its most powerful, and look around to see what your state help amounts to. Not a whole lot. — NOS4A2
I get a similar feeling about statists. Since there are ways to care for others that do not involve state authority, I lean to the belief that those who are dependent on the state to care for others don’t really care for others. It’s just that they’d much rather have someone else do it for them. This isn't a liberal or objectivist critique of statist charity, as far as I know, but a Marxist one. As I mentioned earlier, the absence of a state would lay bare your compassion for what it really amounts to, and so far it’s not looking pretty. — NOS4A2
The state is mostly controlled by Capital to moderate, or manage, the economic imbalances produced by Capital's exploitation of Labor and Nature. The larger the scale and more complex / dynamic the economic activity, the more dependent dominant economic actors are on "the evils of the state" for more (cyclical) periods of stability in markets and society than would occur without the state; thus, it's not only in their respective and collective class interest to capture state policy-making but also to perpetuate the state's 'Capital-facilitating' functions (e.g. corporate welfare, socializing costs/debts of private profiteering, etc).
In this current corporatocratic, post-mercantile era, NOS, advocating "separation of state and economy" – pure ideology (Žižek) – is no less delusional than the notion of "separation of structure and dynamics" in engineering (or no less incoherent than "separation of mind and body" in theology / metaphysics). No amount of rightist-libertarian sermonizing can change this political-economic fact (vide A. Smith, K. Marx ... J.M. Keynes ... D. Schweickart). — 180 Proof
I’ve never understood the criticism of laissez-faire. Economic history, if there is such a thing, has invariably been one of statism and state intervention. Fascism, communism, progressivism, socialism—all demand the regulation of the economy, providing posterity with examples spanning the gamut of oppression and exploitation, ranging from annoying to despotic.
So what’s to fear in the separation of the state and economy?
Poverty, overconsumption, monopoly, wealth inequality, seem to me the common objections. Keynes said as much in his essay “The End of laissez-faire”. But all of the above are apparent in all systems, including in those in which Keynes was the architect: capitalism “wisely managed”.
But why should it be managed at all? Why should one serve the interests of the state instead of his own and his neighbors?
Upon thinking about it, Oscar Wilde was at least honest when he said that “Socialism would relieve us from that sordid necessity of living for others”. This attitude, I believe, represents the inherent egoism beneath the fear of the separation of state and economy. Without a state tending to the ills of the economy we would be required to confront that “sordid necessity” and to cooperate with each other based on our own personal initiative and resources. Instead of passively paying a tax or promoting this or that government service we would need to act and to do so voluntarily in order to affect any change. To “let us do” would be to lay bare our conscience and morality for what it really amounts to.
The state wedded to the economy is by now ubiquitous, and state intervention commonplace. It has absorbed all spontaneous social effort, as Ortega Y Gasset once predicted, leaving us to not fear the social ills, which are still with us every day and in every society, but the absence of the state and what we are to do in its stead. — NOS4A2
On Russian state TV: host (and modern day Goebbels wannabe) Vladimir Solovyov threatens Europe and all NATO countries, as not only Ukraine has to be denazified: — ssu
I don't think a mind can be "uploaded" in a way that after a copy of your mind is "created" you would be experiencing things from a computer or whatever after the copy is made (unless there is some kind of link between the two).The idea runs around of loading minds up in computers. It's a recurring theme in SF culture and thought about the technological possibilities in the future. We can read on Wikipedia:
"Mind uploading, also known as whole brain emulation (WBE), is the theoretical futuristic process of scanning a physical structure of the brain accurately enough to create an emulation of the mental state (including long-term memory and "self") and transferring or copying it to a computer in a digital form."
I wonder if this can be done, even in principle. It presupposes that mind can be extracted, collected, and injected. I think mind is bounded to a living brain, and the living body and world the body walks around in.
Also, a simulation isn't the same as that what's simulated. Even if the causal structures of neurons are visible in the simulation, if you replace my brain by the computer on which its simulated, so my body behaves like me, there would be no mind left. It may seem so by the body's behavior but looks can deceive. In a dream you encounter people that behave as if they have minds but they don't. I can be conscious without showing but showing doesn't imply mind. The brain simulates. So a simulated brain would be a simulated simulation device. And what to think of the impossibility to create a neuron in a lab, let alone 80 billion connected living ones?
So what to think of the conjecture about mind uploading? — Haglund
Given the word philosophy is in the very title of this forum, it seems like a fairly straightforward question, "What is philosophy?"
The term itself, as we know, means "love of wisdom" from the Greek. But that doesn't help much until we know what "wisdom" means.
Interested in hearing various interpretations. — Xtrix
Can the notion of god or some form of all encompassing entity be reconciled with the fundamental basis for religions and then natural sciences? Need spirituality and science be at odds with one another or could they indeed both be describing the same thing from different perspectives? — Benj96
I believe I more or less agree with everything you said. Back when the USSR was collapsing if they handled it in some way similar to what China did, there would have been very little the West could do about it. But they didn't and now they are likely not anywhere as nearly as powerful as they were when they were still the USSR. And of course over the years there have been many other events that have undermined their efforts in maintaining their "Super Power" status.Yeah, that video pretty much sums up most of it. The main part is that people genuinely seem to be unable to understand that reasons don't equal justification. Putin can delude himself and his minions all he wants with his reasons, but there's nothing about Nato expansion nor his dreams of the old Russian empire that justifies any kind of invasion or war of any kind.
It all boils down to a simple question of national freedom: does an independent nation have the freedom to build its own security, including joining a security alliance? If the answer is no, then people can argue for Putin's justifications. If the answer is yes, then the debate is over and Putin is essentially the bad guy here. If no, then that leads to a whole bunch of follow-up questions that need to be addressed. What Russia wants, what it fears, how delusional it is about Nato or whatever argument there is for Putin's justification, it doesn't matter because, as the video ends with, Putin proved the justification for Nato's existence. It even forced Sweden and Finland to radically change opinions 180 about their will to join Nato. If Russia could just, like, fucking stay within their borders and do whatever they want in there, that's totally fine, then Sweden and Finland wouldn't have to think about Nato like this. But since Putin threatens the world as he does, even if that is just his Russian bullying bullshit methods, it really justifies having an alliance of security against such lunacy. There's no justification that can be done on Russia's or Putin's part, none. — Christoffer
I could be wrong but I believe that those in power in both Russia and China will not be happy until they are a Super Power that is able to rival the US and her allies, or at least until it becomes impossible to do so.If Russia wants to be alone, they can be alone, no one really cares about them as a nation, especially not now. If Russia wants to be cared about, if they want to be a global player, then no one is actually stopping them from it. It's just that they have to be involved with lots of globalization things that they just didn't like. And they can't have the cake and eat it too. They either join the rest of the globalized world, be a true partner, someone people likes, not someone they fear. Or they go down the route they've gone down now, to be someone to fear, to gain "respect" through that. It's bullying mentality really, the gangster/mafia method of gaining respect. It also means no one wants to deal with them anymore, no one wants criminals around them. If someone is consistently acting like a criminal, bullying, beating people up, and never stops even when everyone tells them to chill, then in the end people will turn their backs. To then be pissed because people don't trust them, to be pissed that people want security from them, so pissed that they attack in full force... that isn't in any shape or form justified. It only justifies their own demise and gives every justification for an alliance of security. — Christoffer
I'm guessing some are either just trying to play the devil's advocate or perhaps they don't understand the situation that well. It is possible that some of them actually have some kind of anti-US position, but I don't imagine it is likely any of those kind of people would both debating here.I find it remarkable the amount of defense Russia and Putin get on this forum. From the uneducated, the illogical apologists and the confused irrationals, not seeing how actually non-complicated things have become by the acts of Putin and Russia. We now have much more insight into Russia and Putin than ever, fully seeing what he has built up towards. Over the years there's been lots of apologists as well as fear-mongers and the discussions and debates have been raging without any real conclusions being able to be drawn since neither side had much to back anything up. This war really sided with the fear mongers, there's no question Putin lived up to their arguments and ideas. But still, the debate is ongoing for some reason. It's hard to look at bombed children and think there's any grey area to the justification Putin had for this invasion. It's crystal clear he's become the first superpower dictator since the cold war or even WWII. And there's no defending that, however people think they're clever arguing for it. — Christoffer
I think you misread what I said. I did say that the US and her allies concentrate on their own security more then the security of others, but I didn't say that they do it in a way that is a blatant double standard in regard to other countries or at least not that as far as I can tell. However as I said elsewhere in tis thread this is pretty much true of all other countries that have had to deal with national security issues through out the world.So the West is fully entitled to undermine the safety of others, but others may not even defend themselves? — baker
Well just because the US and her allies really didn't do much when other countries may have invaded their neighbors doesn't mean that those invasions where "ok". There is an old saying "you can't catch every bird that falls from the sky". While the Western powers have vast resources and sometimes try to act like the police of the world, it doesn't mean they can afford to either try to fix any and every problem that comes up or even bother to get involved with them. And if claim that they only really want to get involved with issues that are tied to something that is important to them then the answer is "yes" but that is basically true of any country that has ever existed.Well, I don’t think Tibet was an aggressor, or the Kurdish people who are under Turkish occupation. It seems to me that the West is applying some blatant double standards.
Also, if the West’s intention is to prevent Putin from using NBC’s, as it allegedly did in Iraq, then Ukraine is an unrelated issue. — Apollodorus
There is hardly anyone still alive who lived through World War II and it has been hard for some countries to justify having and maintaining large armies that would be ready for anything like what happened back then. And just because a few extra countries join NATO doesn't mean it is anything like when a country start taking over other countries like when Germany did during world War II. If I have a gardening club and get a few extra people to join it, it doesn't mean I have gained some major power in doing so.From what I see, NATO has been constantly expanding, taking in new members like the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland in 1999, followed by others ever since. IMO it doesn’t look like a “dead man brought back to life by Putin” at all. — Apollodorus
I don't think the US military industrial complex ever really cared if Russia wanted to join NATO or not. If anything, they were likely more happier before Russia fell and they could always scare people of the "big old boogey man" that Russia appeared to be during the Cold War. However after 9/11 we starting having the "War on Terrorism" as well as the wars in the middle east. Unfortunately we were not facing the kind of armies over there where high tech military hardware is really effective against but I guess beggars sometimes can't be choosers.And Russia’s invasion of Ukraine does seem to have scuppered NATO’s plan to incorporate the country.
More to the point, as has been observed by some, Putin’s actions have put a brake on America’s plans to make Russia part of its NWO empire – at least for now. — Apollodorus
I haven't seen anything you or anyone else has said that really makes it seem like Kolomoisky is "evil" other then possibly being nothing but a pawn of Western countries. If he is as bad as you say I would need to see some proof before I could believe he is anything like people such as Putin or Stalin.There is no need for Kolomoisky to be worse. I think it’s enough for him to be like or close to Putin. And with Ukraine being next after Russia on Europe’s corruption scale, it looks like it’s perfectly OK to be corrupt as long as you are a friend of America, as can be seen from the case of Saudi Arabia and others. — Apollodorus
Well I guess you got your wish since both Russia and China are trying to become a super power that rivals the US and are either using or considering using military action in doing so. :DI’m totally against any one power having total or almost total world dominance. My position is that each country and each continent should be free and independent. A multipolar world order is necessary to prevent the emergence of worldwide dictatorship. — Apollodorus
I more or less agree, I think.I was looking at the connection as way for the autocracy of the regime to be seen as serving the culture of the believers. Whatever sincerity may or not be involved, the appearance of service can be a strong element of social control. Putin seems to have been successful at getting others to think he wants what they want. The extremity of this action pulls the drop cloth off that action. The grinding destruction of what was supposed to be saved is not going back in the box before Pandora returns. — Paine
It's not clear, though, whether China wants Taiwan for itself, or whether they just want that Taiwan wouldn't come into US' hands. Because it's questionable how long Taiwan can maintain relative independence, even as it has ties both to China and the US. Would China still want Taiwan if there would be no US or similar power? Perhaps not. — baker
Almost ever war that has ever been fought, it almost always has something to do with religion. Of course, it has almost always also to do with territory/power/money as well. And sometimes the aspects of one are used to justify the reasons of the other, which I think in this war Putin has claimed that western Influence is corrupting Ukrainian society/leaders and they need to save their fellow brothers and sisters (which they claim they view as fellow Russians) before the taint of western corruption destroys their moral values and/or socialist values.It is difficult for me as well.
Whatever one might make of the brutal methods of the USSR, Putin's close connection to the Russian Orthodox Church should not go unnoticed.
That element does not come into play with bombing Syrians and Chechens of another faith. It is front and center of the message of what is going on in Ukraine. — Paine
Well for some of the following reasons: A) Ukraine is a country in Europe B) there is a chance that the war could escalate and spill over to over European countries and start a larger conventional war similar to what happened in WWI and WWII C) as far as anyone can tell in the West, Ukraine wasn't an aggressor (unlike when US fought/invaded/occupied such places as Iraq/Afghanistan) D) the invasion is being done by Russian (aka. the old USSR boogey man who was supposed to be dead already) who still has NBC (nuclear/biological/chemical) weapons - you know the kind of "weapons of mass destruction" Bush Junior ranted and raved about as to why we had to go into Iraq in order to make sure a madman such as Saddam didn't have access to them and might use them if he couldn't have his own way. Well, I could be wrong but Putin has become this notion of what Bush Jr. and the republicans where afraid of what Saddam might become if we didn't go into Iraq again and stop him. However the difference is that at the drop of a hat, Putin CAN use Russia's NBCs/"weapons of mass destruction" and unleash hell on earth is he so wishes too.I agree that in an ideal world no country should be invaded by another. In fact, in an ideal world there would be no need for countries to take such an action.
Unfortunately, the world is not ideal and invasions do happen: Pakistan’s invasion of Kashmir (1947), China’s invasion of Tibet (1951), China’s invasion of India (1962), Turkey’s invasion of Cyprus (1974), America’s invasion of Iraq (2003), Turkey’s invasion of Syria (2019), etc., etc.
What is particularly interesting is that very little if any action was taken by the international community in response to the above (and many other) invasions. So, what makes Ukraine different? — Apollodorus
You are correct that the US and her allies give push back (and sometimes undermine) Russia but they do that to ALL countries and even each other. The world nations are much like a school playground where there is a kind of pecking order and sometimes they even bully and harass each other. The only difference is there is no adult there to really supervise them so the children have to kind of supervise themselves, kind of like in lord of the flies I guess.I think part of the answer is that the West (US and UK in particular) has long seen Russia as an economic and military rival to be contained and, as far as possible, to be brought under Western economic, financial, and political dominance. — Apollodorus
Actually I think Russia’s military operation in Ukraine is just about the best thing that could happen to it after WWII. NATO was formed in order to defend against the big old boogey man, the former USSR, and when the USSR collapsed the meaning for it's existence almost collapsed as well. However with Russia invading Ukraine the shock of such an action has been like using a defibrillator on a dying man, it has resuscitated the reason for NATO's existence.Additionally, Russia’s military operation in Ukraine frustrates NATO’s and the EU’s expansion plans. — Apollodorus
Unless Kolomoisky is the devil himself (or perhaps even if he is), I can't really see how he can be worse than Putin. Every politician through out history has always either been called someone's puppet or a lose cannon who nobody can predict what they will do next. Your either a revolutionary or someone's stooge. If Zelensky is either a revolutionary, stooge, or a con-man (which is just really a kind of stooge that somewhat behaves as a king's jester) then he is really not that different then any other Western politician who has had to take the world stage. But of course since he BEHAVES more like a western politician then a pro-Russian one that could be enough of a reason for Russia to want to take him out.Another factor that makes Ukraine different is the media coverage and the public response to it. Since the pandemic and the lockdowns, growing numbers of people have turned to the news and social media and have become susceptible to political and ideological influence or manipulation.
Zelensky himself is a media man and TV actor who for many years has used the media to sell himself and his narrative. His predecessor Poroshenko has described Zelensky as a “puppet of (oligarch) Kolomoisky” and his election as “the biggest electoral fraud in Ukrainian history”. — Apollodorus
Yes, in the US we are ruled by plutocratic leaders instead of one's put there through democratic means. However neither are Russia or China one's ruled through socialism but instead through autocracies.This does not necessarily justify Russia’s invasion of Ukraine - it certainly doesn't justify bombing innocent and unarmed civilians - but it raises some pertinent questions concerning Zelensky’s legitimacy and the accuracy of the way the events are being presented to the public by the Western media.
Incidentally, the EU has announced a €1.2 billion loans package to Ukraine, in addition to €500 million in humanitarian aid and further hundreds of millions in military aid from the EU and US. I think it is safe to assume that in a country with corruption levels like those of Ukraine, a large part of that will end up in the wrong hands (or pockets).
In any case, instead of having one economic and military bloc constantly expanding at the expense of others, I think it would make more sense to have some kind of balance of power in the region and in the world. Otherwise there is a real danger that Western imperialism – economic, financial, military, political, and cultural - will lead to total world dominance by the US and its client states. — Apollodorus
Putin and Xi Jinping where already taking long romantic walks together and giving each other bjobs to each other before the invasion so if they come closer together for whatever reason, it is unlikely to be that much closer than they already are.In the short term, the West’s actions can only result in Russia turning to China and leaving the latter in a much stronger position than before vis-à-vis the West.
China Sees at Least One Winner Emerging From Ukraine War: China – New York Times
And yes, for a more complete picture it is important to look at it from various perspectives, including the Russian one .... :smile: — Apollodorus
Sorry to but in but I'm unaware of how Zelesky may be a thug as you say. Is it possible for you to explain where you have come to this conclusion?It’s understandable to be upset that Zelensky is losing, but (1) it isn’t my fault, (2) I don’t see why this is of concern to Finland, and (3) according to some, Zelensky is a thug as are the oligarchs behind him, as explained on the other thread, which is why a more balanced, rational, and less emotional, analysis would be preferable. — Apollodorus
Ok, you might have a point in that there may be some truth to this issue and that Putin (and those that support him) see this as more as a civil war than a war between two countries, but does that really justify his actions or wise for him to invade?As regards Putin’s alleged intention to rebuild the borders of the Russian Empire, (a) I see no evidence to support that claim and (b) as already explained, Ukraine has always been part of Russia, both Ukraine and Russia having been part of the same territory called Russia or “Land of the Rus(sians)” (роусьскаѧ землѧ, rusĭskaę zemlę), a.k.a. “Kievan Rus”.
The fact is that Ukraine became separated from Russia only after being invaded and occupied by foreign powers (Mongols, Lithuanians, Poles). It follows that Putin has a point and his views need to be taken into consideration even if we disagree with his actions. IMO a discussion based exclusively on the views of countries like Finland (or any others) that have nothing to do with Ukraine is not a proper discussion. But if you think it is, go ahead, I’m not holding you back …. :smile: — Apollodorus
That you for pointing this issue out for me. The only things I remember reading anything similar about this issue was that on the Eastern side of the conflict in WWII many countries readily welcomed the Nazi's when they came in and "liberated" their countries from Stalin and possibly saved some of them from dying from starvation from what I believe use to be called the "Harvest of Sorrow", which was a plan where Stalin would steal wheat and other food from countries like Ukraine which Stain would turn around and sell it to the West in order to do things like to help fund his government, build up is military, and create factories to start building Russia industrial complex which hardly existed when he gained power. My guess as to why he did this was that Russia didn't have much of anything to export to Western countries so he had to come up with some "creative" way to jump start Russia's economy, even if it cost millions of people their lives.The historical background of the conflict in Ukraine needs to include Stalin's starvation of the country, where the agenda to destroy the Kulaks was combined with exerting central control over the 'Soviets.' It should be remembered that Ukraine was the kick off of the Holocaust, where the Nazi idea that Jews were behind Communism became a rule of engagement in Operation Barbarossa. The USSR only recognized a general loss of "innocent people" rather than a specific genocide after the war.
The policy of erasure and denial of people in Ukraine has been a Cheka legacy since the Bolshevik revolution.
With the politics of the Cold War leading to the Iron Curtain and the formation of NATO, Putin has taken up the language of ultranationalists to deny Ukrainian nationality now that the USSR and the Warsaw Pact no longer exists. Putin forgot to hold a referendum in Ukraine on the matter.
Taiwan emerged on the other side of this Cold War dynamic as a resistance to Communism. The situation is very different in economic terms because China is integrated with production on a global scale where Russia is a big player in only a few industries. — Paine