View Poll Results: The Commander of the Massassi Pretentious Patrol is:

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  • Reid.

    4 50.00%
  • Reverend Jones.

    4 50.00%
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Thread: Massassi Bread Parade: The Pretentious Patrol

  1. #41
    I really don't notice too many of Reid's posts because I usually back out of the thread or scroll way down when I come to one of Jones'.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  2. #42
    I'll leave it as an exercise to the reader to determine which members fall into each category, although I think the subject of this thread answers that question for one member in particular:

    Quote Originally Posted by Henry Thomas Buckle
    Men and women range themselves into three classes or orders of intelligence; you can tell the lowest class by their habit of always talking about persons; the next by the fact that their habit is always to converse about things; the highest by their preference for the discussion of ideas.
    http://quoteinvestigator.com/2014/11/18/great-minds/

  3. #43
    By this reasoning, the character of your other thread, Wookie, at least puts you ahead of him....

  4. #44
    I don't understand what you're referring to in your last post but the previous one is interesting because one reason I am so disinterested in talking politics with so many people is that I'm tired of the people and the things and more interested in the ideas.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  5. #45
    Perhaps this change of heart is the result of having found yourself in the uncomfortable position of being unable to defend the politician who has succeeded in garnering the tacit support of the usual conservative opinion makers, leaders, and exemplars of the ideas you believe in?

    "No true conservative supports a man like Donald Trump!"

  6. #46
    Not really. My movement in that direction precedes this past election cycle. I was done with this election by the time the convention came.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  7. #47
    So if the Republican party cannot be the standard-bearer for conservatism, do you envision yourself moving on to other political movements?

  8. #48
    I think your terminology or phrasing is off but within the context of what I think you're asking, not really.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  9. #49
    So I presume when a Republican comes along who is worth supporting in your mind, I suppose you will once again become interested in politicians and not just lofty ideals.

  10. #50
    There are plenty of politicians I support that have espoused ideas that inspire me. People and ideas are especially not mutually exclusive.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  11. #51
    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie06 View Post
    People and ideas are especially not mutually exclusive.
    And that's pretty much the crux of representative democracy, isn't it?

    I can't help but wonder if you and I wouldn't be so harshly pitted against one another in a parlimentary system. (And perhaps by now Trump would have earned a vote of no confidence.)

  12. #52
    I don't consider myself pitted against anyone here anymore but if we are then I'm not sure we couldn't be.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  13. #53
    You seem to want to have things both ways--you can't own up to the actions of conservative politicans in practice, but you identify as one nevertheless. And I think this explains your withdrawal from politics, because on some level you recognize this.

    Again I argue this as resulting from the two party system--the practical reality is that you are against Donald Trump, or you are for him. In a parlimentary system, going off into the wilderness and building up a political movement outside the mainstream could be harvested later as meaningful progress when it comes time to build a coalition. In the USA, though, it is no more than obstructionism.

    The part of this cowardice that I find so distasteful is that it seems to me indistinguishable from the point of view of Paul Ryan--shrug your shoulders and shirk responsiblity while doing nothing to stop it.
    Last edited by Reverend Jones; 07-13-2017 at 07:28 PM.

  14. #54
    I don't have a problem with many conservative politicians at all. I wish there were more. I'm guessing you have a very broad perception of conservative that is different from mine.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  15. #55
    It's good to know that the basis of obstructionism via the two party system is a no true Scotsman fallacy.

    I can understand if you don't mesh with the likes of Paul Ryan and co., and that you are on some other axis than Republican-Democrat. But under what circumstances would you join the opposition in order to thwart the damage he is enabling through his complicity to Trump's blatant disregard for civic duty?

  16. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie06 View Post
    I don't have a problem with many conservative politicians at all. I wish there were more. I'm guessing you have a very broad perception of conservative that is different from mine.
    Oh, but feel free not to define yours, of course.

  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend Jones View Post
    You seem to want to have things both ways--you can't own up to the actions of conservative politicans in practice, but you identify as one nevertheless.
    All conservatives are like this. Conservatism is an inherently emotional position. It's an emotional connection to some inscrutable notion of rightness, that none of them can explain; the desire for a destination to which none of them knows the course, but only the bearing. Actions and actors but not consequences. Asking a conservative to take responsibility for their choices is like asking a toddler to.

  18. #58
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    The main problem with an emotional political movement like conservatism is that it gives voters no recourse. Republican voters don't know what success looks like, so they can't possibly define failure. And that's how Republican politicians win elections, because they can't fail. Isn't that just so terribly convenient for them?

    Like this "small government" thing. Nobody knows what "small government" should actually look like, but it should feel small. It should feel efficient and unobtrusive, and it should feel like it's not too expensive to run. What does that actually mean? Nobody ****ing knows. But it feels like the government isn't doing anything very important, and getting rid of it feels like it's solving a problem. So here we are. Small government. Hoo-rah.

  19. #59
    Eh. I get what you mean that it's unclear this envisioned "small government" actually looks like, but it is relatively clear how Republican voters define the success or non-success of Republican economic policy. Success in the eyes of a Republican voter means having more disposable income. And whatever "small government" means, it's clear that the Republican theory about slashing government is primarily a matter of means, rather than ends: that is, slashing government services, lowering taxes and deregulation are, in theory, the means of generating more wealth for the middle-class.

    Less important than how small government "makes you feel" is the argument that government bureaucracies are insulated from free market competition, and therefore they don't provide services as cheaply or as efficiently as they would if they were exposed to competition, so they should be privatized. Less government means more services that people rely on are made more efficient by competition, and so less government is better than more. At least, that's the argument.

    Obviously, it seems dubious that the theory has any connection at all to reality. Does Republican economic policy actually promote economic growth? Whether it does or not, Republican supporters can still find themselves getting wealthier during Republican presidencies and attribute it to the policies of their government. But, of course, when the personal wealth of middle-class Republican voters diminishes, they become dissatisfied and don't turn out to the polls.
    Last edited by Eversor; 07-14-2017 at 09:35 AM.

  20. #60
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    No, conservative economic policy is entirely vague and emotional, too. Emotion is how you can look at service cuts and crumbling infrastructure and still conclude you are better off, because X "dollars" looks bigger than Y "dollars". If they actually cared about disposable income, they'd notice how much better off they are whenever their guys are shut out.

  21. #61
    That's not emotion. That's the cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias inherent in all ideology. It's just as common on the left as it is on the right.

  22. #62
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    Those are literally emotional responses to contradictory information.

    The difference between the left and right on this issue is that you can quantify the economic value you get from public goods and services versus keeping the money yourself. There is no need to appeal to emotion here. It is garbage thinking for garbage people.

    Obviously the left has some issues defined mostly in emotional terms, but conservatives stand apart by defining virtually every issue as an emotional or identity issue. They are the preciousest of precious snowflakes, each more easily triggered than the last.
    Last edited by Jon`C; 07-14-2017 at 10:31 AM.

  23. #63
    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    Those are literally emotional responses to contradictory information.
    No they're not. Emotions are feelings or passions. Cognitive dissonance and confirmation don't necessarily have anything to do with those things. The have to do with how someone interprets information. A dyslexic person can confuse the order of letters. It has nothing to do with what they feel. And two people can watch the same debate and conclude that different people won the debate. It has to do with how they contextualize the information that they receive. It doesn't necessarily have anything to do with how they feel.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    The difference between the left and right on this issue is that you can quantify the economic value you get from public goods and services versus keeping the money yourself. There is no need to appeal to emotion here. It is garbage thinking for garbage people.
    Mhmm. And a $15 minimum wage will only be good for the labor force, and our reasons for thinking so are rooted in data, a fact-based approach and other empirical evidence. Because unlike Republicans, we're committed to data and science and reason, and our policies help the little guy. Right?
    Last edited by Eversor; 07-14-2017 at 11:07 AM.

  24. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    No they're not. Emotions are feelings or passions. Cognitive dissonance and confirmation have nothing to do with those things. The have to do with how someone interprets information. A dyslexic person can confuse the order of letters. It has nothing to do with what they feel. And two people can watch the same debate and conclude that different people won the debate. It has to do with how they contextualize the information that they receive. It doesn't necessarily have anything to do with how they feel.
    They are fear/anxiety derived responses to contradictory information. Our bodies produce a similar physiological response to intellectual threats that we do for physical threats, and that is where they come from. They are very much emotional, by any reasonable definition for emotion.

    Mhmm. And a $15 minimum wage will only be good for the labor force, and our reasons for thinking so are rooted in data, a fact-based approach and other empirical evidence. Because unlike Republicans, we're committed to data and science and reason, and our policies help the little guy. Right?
    Look dude, you're talking to someone who considers compulsory wage labor a form of slavery, so be careful when you throw around the word "we". If Democrats were meaningfully progressive their answer to income inequality wouldn't be to make pointless low skill jobs more attractive.

    Reducing minimum wage employment is not necessarily a bad thing, and it's not necessarily permanent. There are sound economic arguments both for and against doing it regardless of this totally predictable outcome.

  25. #65
    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    They are fear/anxiety derived responses to contradictory information. Our bodies produce a similar physiological response to intellectual threats that we do for physical threats, and that is where they come from. They are very much emotional, by any reasonable definition for emotion.
    They can be. I don't deny that certain information can incite an emotional response that temporarily reduces a person's ability to make sound judgments. But emotion isn't the only reason why a person errs when interpreting information he or she is presented with.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    Look dude, you're talking to someone who considers compulsory wage labor a form of slavery, so be careful when you throw around the word "we". If Democrats were meaningfully progressive their answer to income inequality wouldn't be to make pointless low skill jobs more attractive.

    Reducing minimum wage employment is not necessarily a bad thing, and it's not necessarily permanent. There are sound economic arguments both for and against doing it regardless of this totally predictable outcome.
    I wasn't talking about you. I was talking about Democrats and those on the left who support a $15 minimum wage, even though there's significant evidence that it would do more damage than good.

    And your dodging the argument. Clearly, the left, as a whole, is just as wed to its sacred cows as Republicans are. However much we left-of-center folk claim our views are distinct from those on the right because they're rooted in "data" and "facts", it doesn't mean that when presented with reliable quantitative information that undermines the validity of our dogmas that we aren't resistant to changing our views.
    Last edited by Eversor; 07-14-2017 at 11:37 AM.

  26. #66
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    Well if you want to talk about data and science, I read the actual paper you linked (via the article) and it is one stinky turd. They ex post facto cherry picked model parameters and a subset of their sample in order to fit the narrative they wanted - showing that, actually, the minimum wage increase most strongly affected people making more than the minimum wage - and even so, their confidence intervals mostly include zero (meaning statistical insignificance).

    So then I found this, which goes into these problems:

    https://www.americanprogress.org/iss...-minimum-wage/

    I guess you and I have a difference of opinion in what constitutes... er, evidence.

  27. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    They can be. I don't deny that certain information can incite an emotional response that temporarily reduces a person's ability to make sound judgments. But emotion isn't the only reason why a person errs when interpreting information he or she is presented with.
    Well sure, you can be just plain wrong, or uninformed. But cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias are absolutely emotional, and you were off base when you used them as specific examples.

    I wasn't talking about you.
    Sure.

    I was talking about Democrats and those on the left who support a $15 minimum wage, even though there's significant evidence that it would do more damage than good.
    Well, I mean, there actually isn't good evidence for this at all. I mean, the standard microeconomic arguments are that it reduces demand for low skill labor, discourages skill development, and fuels inflation. But that all assumes there are no monopsony effects and that inflation is necessarily bad, which is roughly 192% bull****.

    On the flip side, holding up the price of low skill labor encourages automation and capital investment, growing the economy in the long run, and yes, drives inflation, which is good for debtors. It is probably good on net even if it does drive down low skill employment in the short term (which itself wouldn't even be a problem if you had a functional social safety net).

    And your dodging the argument. Clearly, the left, as a whole, is just as wed to its sacred cows as Republicans are. However much we left-of-center folk claim our views are distinct from those on the right because they're rooted in "data" and "facts", it doesn't mean that when presented with reliable quantitative information that undermines the validity of our dogmas that we aren't resistant to changing our views.
    I never said the Democrats don't do this. I said the Republicans are much worse.

  28. #68
    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    Well sure, you can be just plain wrong, or uninformed. But cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias are absolutely emotional, and you were off base when you used them as specific examples.
    No they aren't, and no I wasn't. They have to do with how information is contextualized.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    Sure.
    I wasn't talking about you. Maybe you misinterpreted what I said because you're "anxious", since apparently that's a reason why people form mistaken beliefs.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    On the flip side, holding up the price of low skill labor encourages automation and capital investment, growing the economy in the long run, and yes, drives inflation, which is good for debtors. It is probably good on net even if it does drive down low skill employment in the short term (which itself wouldn't even be a problem if you had a functional social safety net).
    I'll accept that raising the minimum wage may have some good outcomes, but in Seattle it's not currently achieving the policy goal which is its stated raison d'etre: higher monthly income for minimum wage employees.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    I never said the Democrats don't do this. I said the Republicans are much worse.
    That's true: you didn't say that. But I'd say in response it's a deeply unsatisfying argument. It's evidently the case that Democrats and others on the left do do it. So who does it more? Nobody knows, because it's not actually something that can be quantified. A qualitative argument, rather than a quantitive, would be more satisfying as an explanation for what the difference is between the right and the left vis-a-vis how connected or disconnected their policy prescriptions are to reality.
    Last edited by Eversor; 07-14-2017 at 02:06 PM.

  29. #69
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    Calm down.

  30. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    I'll accept that raising the minimum wage may have some good outcomes, but in Seattle it's not currently achieving the policy goal which is its stated raison d'etre: higher monthly income for minimum wage employees.
    Replying because you edited this into your post:

    As I already pointed out, the Seattle study has been widely criticized by practicing economists and statisticians. The study was botched badly, in terms of its statistical analysis, and the authors have not made their data available to other researchers for independent verification. And contrary to the authors' conclusions, their own analysis shows the minimum wage actually increased employment in higher paid (non-minimum wage) positions.

    For all intents and purposes this study is a work of FICTION. I only have 6 undergrad credits in statistics, and even I could tell it's crazy pants. It is a terrible mistake to draw any kind of conclusion from it.

    You don't actually know whether the minimum wage in Seattle is doing anything, either way. Stop pretending you do.

  31. #71
    Woah there, Mr. Calm-and-Relaxed. I never claimed to be particularly informed about the subject.

  32. #72
    Well that escalated quickly.

    Either way, I'd be more interested to hear Wookie's response to my last post, but I want to be perfectly clear that I don't want to badger him and will readily admit that he would have to be somewhat masochistic to want to respond (even assuming he didn't read the exchange beginning with Jon`C's admittedly convincing and appealing perspective on the matter, which nevertheless leaves Wookie no room and all to respond without first having to swallow his pride completely).

  33. #73
    Ooph. I'll have to jump in after Wookie responds, because I had more substantial points to make in response to Jon's description of "conservatism" in America before I did that whole "bucks in locked antlers" thing I apparently love to do so much.

  34. #74
    I wouldn't hold your breath. Don't let me stop you guys from continuing the discussion, I just wanted to give Wookie some space should he choose to use it. And in fact I wanted to make it clear I hope he doesn't feel pressured to if the discussion was already too awkward and accusatory even where I had left it.

  35. #75
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    Jon is pointing out the most serious problem of the American electorate though. Republicans pretty much do nothing in arguments but distract and tu quoque democrats. They almost never have any idea what policies their politicians support and often say they prefer the opposite policy when asked outside of a partisan context. And yet they have such a tribalistic mindset they'll absolutely ignore this. You'll never criticize a conservative politician without them going off on some rant about Hillary. It's nuts.

    Of course, Wookie doesn't seem to like Republicans. I can't speak for him but I doubt his views diverge very much from typical Republican stuff.

  36. #76
    I think our democracy is in much bigger trouble the moment people start calling half the country "the most serious problem".

    At any rate, why should Wookie bother to respond at all if Aristotle long ago proved that he couldn't possibly be right because conservatives are pure evil?

  37. #77
    And yes, in case you were wondering, I am in fact the good cop. Let's continue with this interrogation (or not <-- meta good cop).

  38. #78
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    I guess that makes me the average American cop of this discussion.

  39. #79
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    I will metaphorically shoot your rhetorical dogs for fun, and make your epistemological children watch.

  40. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend Jones View Post
    I think our democracy is in much bigger trouble the moment people start calling half the country "the most serious problem".

    At any rate, why should Wookie bother to respond at all if Aristotle long ago proved that he couldn't possibly be right because conservatives are pure evil?
    They're the biggest problem with the electorate, not in general.

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