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Is it me, or most of the time when the expression "political correctness" is used in a debate, it's simply a fallacious argument to discredit an idea with minimal effort ? In short, it's a straw man. Not that "political correctness" doesn't exist, but it's not, in itself, an argument.

 

It's just amazing to see how far people are ready to go just to avoid a debate of substance.

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Is it me, or most of the time when the expression "political correctness" is used in a debate, it's simply a fallacious argument to discredit an idea with minimal effort ? In short, it's a straw man. Not that "political correctness" doesn't exist, but it's not, in itself, an argument.

 

It's just amazing to see how far people are ready to go just to avoid a debate of substance.

 

For me, political correctness is associated with a kind of basic patriotism and it is associated with things like avoiding foreign debt. I don't think it is politically correct to run up a big debt to the Chinese.

And differences of income and wealth are fine because they go along with the market efficiencies that was the basic Econ One that I learned as a teen. But EXTREMES are not correct because they undermine a sense of national unity and tend to divide people into social classes. So a graduated incometax is politically correct (if graduated gradual-like) and inheritance tax is correct---otherwise you get a Feudal system of very wealthy dynasties.

 

Sex issues are not part of politics--it's a personal or civil society matter. Race is a personal matter. I don't think it is politically correct to give people of a particular race or sex any special advantage by law. It is not politically correct for the state to mess with people's reproduction. the civil society can exert enough suasion to assert society's interest.

 

I'm just talking impromptu because the question of what is politically correct doesnt come up too often.

 

Oh, unbridled supercapitalism doesnt work. There has to be countervailing power. It is a bad idea to privatize and deregulate stuff pell-mell just so some sleazebags can make easy money. Even tho its imperfect, some government run stuff is good. Some regulation is good. the hard part is getting the right balance. But nobody said that having a peaceful prosperous democracy is easy.

 

Having elected officials dependent on huge concentrations of wealth corrupts them. It is politically correct to try to figure out how we can get back to a democracy and avoid the worst abuses of corporate corruption of governement.

 

that's what comes to mind when you say politically correct. hope other people will say what they think is correct basic political stance. I may revise my list when I hear other people's

 

thanks for bringing up the issue

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So for you politically correct just = correct?

 

The phrase and the concept originally just referred to speech. Its supposed to come out of the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis. If you change the way people speak, keep them from using the 'n-word' and what-not, then you change fundamentally the way they think and you change society. That was the idea.

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The phrase and the concept originally just referred to speech. Its supposed to come out of the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis. If you change the way people speak, keep them from using the 'n-word' and what-not, then you change fundamentally the way they think and you change society. That was the idea.

 

I don't understand what you are talking about. Civil society and people's culture is different from the state. Political correct means getting rid of corruption and having a graduated income tax. What I do with my wife is our business and what race she is etc. Political correct means keeping out of debt to the chinese and balancing the budget.

Oh, and supporting a global system of international organizations. Our nation playing a cooperative role, not acting like a crazy megalo egofreak. Going along with collective efforts to reduce environment degradation.

 

What the hell do you mean by "n-word", well "f-word" that. There are more important things, much greater dangers, than how people talk. We have to start getting a basic political correctness defined that is a common ground or we are all up "s-word" creek.

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I don't understand what you are talking about. Civil society and people's culture is different from the state. Political correct means getting rid of corruption and having a graduated income tax. What I do with my wife is our business and what race she is etc. Political correct means keeping out of debt to the chinese and balancing the budget.

Oh, and supporting a global system of international organizations. Our nation playing a cooperative role, not acting like a crazy megalo egofreak. Going along with collective efforts to reduce environment degradation.[/Quote]

 

Mmm... If you want to define it that way. That's not what the term originally meant in modern American thought, though.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_correctness

 

What the hell do you mean by "n-word", well "f-word" that. There are more important things, much greater dangers, than how people talk. We have to start getting a basic political correctness defined that is a common ground or we are all up "s-word" creek.

 

The idea is that if you change the way people talk you change the way they think. Look up the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis, that's what it really says. No one's saying there aren't bigger problems. Political correctness just wasn't design to address those.

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Is it me, or most of the time when the expression "political correctness" is used in a debate, it's simply a fallacious argument to discredit an idea with minimal effort ? In short, it's a straw man. Not that "political correctness" doesn't exist, but it's not, in itself, an argument.

 

It's just amazing to see how far people are ready to go just to avoid a debate of substance.

 

Depends on if you're in the majority in a given community. If you are, and someone who disagrees with the community uses the term "politically correct", then you see it as a fallacious straw man.

 

Makes for easy ammunition, too.

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Mmm... If you want to define it that way...

 

Good. Thanks. That is what it means to me---a basic righteous political common ground, if we can find it.

 

I'd very much like to hear what other people say. I want to know what other people think is a correct political stance that many of us might agree on.

So I've said very quickly what occurs to me and i'm asking other people to reciprocate. Tell me and the rest of us what you think.

 

Like for me, political correctness means to stop immigration as much as practical from populations that don't share my Western European English-speaking roots because I don't think the basic Englishspeaking culture of American can assimilate any more right now. I really value the widely literate Anglo-European culture we used to have. A certain amount of new input is refreshing but there is a wise moderation in how much shockload you put on your culture and your civil society at any one time. Don't ask it to swallow too much diversity and change too fast. We have exceeded that wise limit bigtime and need to back off and get cosolidated as a people again.

 

And for me, political correctness means some kind of healthcare system in which the state plays a major role---because privatizing has been carried to an extreme and has screwed up.

 

Anyway, I hope other people will describe what they think would be a righteous commonground politics. I'd like to see what the INTERSECTION of our various POV on this is.

 

Phil thanks for starting the thread. Good idea!

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Is it me, or most of the time when the expression "political correctness" is used in a debate, it's simply a fallacious argument to discredit an idea with minimal effort ?

 

afaict, it's an appeal to ridicule.

 

"hey, your argument is PC, and we all know PC is gobshite. therefore, your argument is gobshite, and we can all ignore it without even thinking about it because i called it PC".

 

iow, it's no different (i.e., no less invalid) than if you just come strait out and actually say 'that's gobshite' from the start.

 

Possibly it has hints of guilt by association added in too (hey, that's PC, which is the work of hippy liberals, so it must be stupid)

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Like for me, political correctness means to stop immigration as much as practical from populations that don't share my Western European English-speaking roots because I don't think the basic Englishspeaking culture of American can assimilate any more right now. I really value the widely literate Anglo-European culture we used to have. A certain amount of new input is refreshing but there is a wise moderation in how much shockload you put on your culture and your civil society at any one time. Don't ask it to swallow too much diversity and change too fast. We have exceeded that wise limit bigtime and need to back off and get cosolidated as a people again.

 

In some circles, you would be labeled a racist! PC has come to mean saying something without offending anyone - or offending the "wrong" group. Nevermind that America has English as its primary language. Nevermind that it obviously places a stress on a county to assimilate people who do not speak the language. Just calling you a racist puts you in a hole so you can't discuss anything.

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afaict, it's an appeal to ridicule.

"hey, your argument is PC, and we all know PC is gobshite. therefore, your argument is gobshite, and we can all ignore it without even thinking about it because i called it PC".

 

Dak, I know what you are saying. Used in a certain way the words are a form of HATE SPEECH directed at me, 'cause I'm a superleftwing liberal in many of my most cherished values, which FALSELY IMPUTES to me a whole bunch of baloney they made up or heard on the radio.

 

so that would seem to be merely some sleaze rhetoric. In fact, in my community we do not all believe the same thing and have the same attitudes, because communities are NOT defined by creeds but by their being communities. We're left-liberals, we like to differ, we like our freedom.

So somebody who calls me or my community politically correct is basically just calling us Nigger in another language and putting on us a bunch of uniform preconception stereotypes. In other words that person is not worth anyone listening to.

 

So I would like to propose a NAME-CALLING RULE. If anyone here at SFN wants to say that some political position is "politically correct" in a DEROGATORY sense, then they should find at least one person here and now at SFN that actually thinks that is correct.

 

Otherwise, how do I know they aren't just making up a stereotype?

 

In some circles, you would be labeled a racist! ...

 

Of course I would! Some circles have their head up their behind.

I definitely judge people by their race (and obvious ethnic background like Sikhs and Punjabi) based on my past experience with that kind of people.

 

Its a form of Bayesian inference. You don't let it run your life but it enters into the personal equation.

 

The Punjabi at the copy center generally have quick understanding and technical mastery, who knows why? I havent time to figure out so when I have a book to print from masters and have to get it right I know where I'll go. Call me a racist, I don't care. My friend a statistician says he does it too and that it is being a Bayesian. (you let your experience gradually affect your subjective probability estimates.) And he's nominally Black, so he is being a Bayesian in his assessment of Whites. Heh heh.

 

People who think being Racist is a no-no can shampoo my ethnocentricity.

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In thinking about this some more, working out various arguments in my head, I think I have to agree with the suggestion of the original post (when fully considered with its caveats). Much of the time it's used as a poor excuse for an argument. But there are other aspects of this that have to be considered.

 

In addition to the majority/minority problem I mentioned before, I think people also need to understand that while Political Correctness is a tool of the far right, criticism OF it is a tool of the far left. For every Rush Limbaugh running around screaming about Christmas, there's an Al Franken running around screaming about right-wingers swinging the "PC" bat. It's every bit as wrong for Al Franken to dismiss conservative concerns as "anti-political correctness" as it is for Rush Limbaugh to dismiss liberal concerns as "political correctness".

 

But is it always a straw man? Let's take a look at a couple of specifics.

 

"The local school board has become so politically correct. We can't even get a prayer read before meetings and all the Christmas decorations are gone!"

 

Usually the term straw man means to misrepresent someone else's argument. I can see how someone might construe this as a straw man because the school board presumably had what they considered to be valid reasons for these actions. But doesn't this person have a right to their opinion that the school board's actions are wrong for the community? And more importantly, don't they ALSO have the right to the opinion that the aggregate collection of school board decisions indicates a general trend in a direction they don't like? Isn't that all their trying to sum up with the above statement?

 

Where I think the straw man argument comes into play is when somebody actually tries to use the PC argument in debate. For example:

 

Person A: "We need to remove the word 'God' from the Pledge of Allegiance."

Person B: "Oh you're just being politically correct!"

 

That's obviously a straw man, because it clearly and succinctly misrepresents Person A's argument.

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I personally Despise the entire concept of it!

it`s just an excuse for these idiotic do-gooder fluffy liberal types to feel like they have some sort of reason to live.

 

http://www.scienceforums.net/forum/showthread.php?t=13016

 

this should give a fair idea of my stance on the whole Pathetic issue.

we should line em all against a wall and make leaded Bio-Deisel out of their stupid carcasses.

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[...]while Political Correctness is a tool of the far right, criticism OF it is a tool of the far left.

 

tool of the right? is this some kinda usa/uk language difference?

 

Over here, PC is a tool of the left, and critisism of it is a tool of the right; it's the lefties who try to rename christmas to winter holiday, whilst the right moan about PC stopping them from shooting imagrants :confused:

 

 

I personally Despise the entire concept of it!

it`s just an excuse for these idiotic do-gooder fluffy liberal types to feel like they have some sort of reason to live.

 

http://www.scienceforums.net/forum/showthread.php?t=13016

 

this should give a fair idea of my stance on the whole Pathetic issue.

we should line em all against a wall and make leaded Bio-Deisel out of their stupid carcasses.

 

otoh, you have to remember that crying 'political correctness' is a beseachment to abandon all thought and just complain without thinking, so most things that are considered 'politically correct' aren't actually true, and the reporting newspapers just haven't checked. the 'black sheep' example that IA mentions in that thread, for example, was incorrect -- apparently, the kids sung about all kinds of sheep (black, white, pink, blue, rainbow, bounsing, happy, sad etc) whilst acting out the motions. it's just that a newspaper got wind of it and descided to report that 'political correcness gorne MAHD' had resulting in baa baa black sheep being switched to baa baa rainbow sheep so as to not offend black people. or possibly sheep, i dunno.

 

my point is just that, for all that political correctness is stupid, the complaints about political correctness are allmost allways stupider.

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Is it me, or most of the time when the expression "political correctness" is used in a debate, it's simply a fallacious argument to discredit an idea with minimal effort ? In short, it's a straw man. Not that "political correctness" doesn't exist, but it's not, in itself, an argument.

 

My guess is it's just you. And not every statement you find objectionable is a strawman.

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"Over here, PC is a tool of the left, and critisism of it is a tool of the right; it's the lefties who try to rename christmas to winter holiday, whilst the right moan about PC stopping them from shooting imagrants "

I'm not sure aout whoich side is using it.

 

If someone has banned "Christmas" on the grounds that it's "not PC" then it's perhaps a tool of the left.

If (as I suspect) that never actually happened but it was a story made up by the right to ridicule the left then it's a tool of the right.

It reminds me of the "ElfAndSafety loonies" at the health and safety authorities who banned playing conkers in schools, teaching rock climbing, and using ladders "because it's dangerous".

Unfortunately for the press this never actually happened so they just made it up anyway.

http://www.hse.gov.uk/myth/index.htm

 

It's a different sort of strawman; "The political left are stupid because they try to ban the use of the word black in schools".

It's not true, it's not even plausible, but it will fool some of the people.

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I think that there is usually quite a big gap between what is called politically (in)correct and what is actually politically (in)correct. When people use the phrase, it is usually either a strawman that nobody actually adheres to (like not being able to sing ba ba black sheep), or just a general pejorative for "liberal" ideas as a whole.

 

There certainly was a real movement that originally bore the label, "political correctness," but it is actually pretty much universally accepted now, even by the critics of the fake excesses of "political correctness." We don't use racial slurs, we say "flight attendant" instead of "stewardess," etc. It was basically a movement to make speech more accurate and generalized in a society with liberal, egalitarian ideals, and it worked, and it's over.

 

As for what actually is literally "politically incorrect," I use the simple definition of things that no politician could say and still get elected. For example it would be politically incorrect to be explicitly racist, or to criticize democracy as a form of government, or to speak ill of any remotely mainstream religion.

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"Over here, PC is a tool of the left, and critisism of it is a tool of the right; it's the lefties who try to rename christmas to winter holiday, whilst the right moan about PC stopping them from shooting imagrants "

I'm not sure aout whoich side is using it.

 

If someone has banned "Christmas" on the grounds that it's "not PC" then it's perhaps a tool of the left.

If (as I suspect) that never actually happened but it was a story made up by the right to ridicule the left then it's a tool of the right.

 

well, obviously i'm over-exaggerating, but iirc some mainstream stores in the us are leaning towards 'holiday trees', for example, rather than xmas trees. tho i'm not sure this is PC, as opposed to making it more accessable (read: more profitable) to the non-christian/atheist religions that celebrate a majour festivle around late december.

 

 

It reminds me of the "ElfAndSafety loonies" at the health and safety authorities who banned playing conkers in schools, teaching rock climbing, and using ladders "because it's dangerous".

Unfortunately for the press this never actually happened so they just made it up anyway.

http://www.hse.gov.uk/myth/index.htm

 

lol, but as an example of how it works, the school that my mum works in (like many others) banned conckers in responce to this. i'd guess that the head and teachers talked about it, assumed that they were now supposed to ban conckers, and so did -- only to then complain about 'political correctness' forsing them to do silly things :D

 

i remember a quote from some polititian during wwii, who had finally got pissed off with the newspapers complaining about suppression of free speach in the name of the war -- "the terrible truth about censorship in the uk is that it is entirely self-imposed". everyone assumed they wouldn't be allowed to say x,y, and z, so they didn't say x,y, and z, but instead complained about the (non-existant) censorship that prevented them from saying x,y, and z :rolleyes:

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One problem with politically correct wording, is that very few words have only one meaning. One word with many meanings, is treated like all meaning are the same, such that even if the intended meaning is harmless, the very word makes even that meaning wrong and subject to censor. If I called a friend "whitey", that could be politically incorrect and I may get censored. So now I have to call my friend, Clarence, instead of by his knick name. He won't like it, but the PC crowd will be happy.

 

There are many sub-cultures that like to use the f-word. To them, it is just a versatile word that has endless shades of meaning. They may be willing to trim a few shades of meaning, not to be offensive. But they would like to be able to use this word for non-offensive meanings.

 

As an example of a compromise, "The dude went to the party and got all f-ed up. Then he drove home and f-ed up his car, when the f-en dog ran in front of him. When he got home, he thought he was f-ed. But is girlfriend was f-en cool about it. She made him the best f-en meal even, and then they made love. This is a PC compromise that only targets the meaning that many people may find offensive. Rest is there just for emphasis.

 

But what happens, by lumping all meanings of the word, this causes some people to visualize sex every time the work is used in a sentence. To them, if we translate the above account, it comes out differently. "He went to the party and had sex standing up, then he did it in the car with a dog. When he got home he thought he would have sex with his girlfriend, but she was cold, so she made him eat first, then they made love. So people begin to cringe since the story just got too bizzare to handle. To protect these people from their active imaginations, the word is censored.

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As i said, i was over-exaggerating, and i was also giving examples of public perception of who's responsable for 'PC-gorn-mahd' (i.e., the left), not saying that the left actually do stuff like that.

 

but if you're interested in it, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas_controversy

 

Seems more like a case of overconscious advertisers and the government honoring the establishment clause

 

Pinning it on lefties is an O'Reillyism

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I remember a little while ago a school board in Rhode Island tried to ban the Easter Bunny because they felt it might be "offensive". I'm not sure if that's what political correct means nowadays but I do have to agree with the OP here that the term "PC" is often abused.

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The "holiday" tree is fascinating. Last time I checked Christ was the "son of God" to Christians, but even to most of the other major religions here He's a prophet.

Most religious people here in the UK shouldn't logically be bothered about celebrating His birth. (though even Christianity ought to have a view on blatant commercialism). (No offense meant to any passing Buddhists or Sikhs)

What's more interesting is that the tree is a pagan symbol rather than a Christian one. (Same for the Easter bunny).

Shouldn't the Christians be objecting to the pagan symbolism?

 

(BTW, is there a WIKI page about everything?)

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Seems more like a case of overconscious advertisers and the government honoring the establishment clause

 

Pinning it on lefties is an O'Reillyism

 

That's an example of calling-PCness-a-straw-man in itself becoming a straw man. Whether the "Christmas Controversy" is an example of "government honoring the establishment clause" or an example of "lefty behavior" is a matter of personal opinion, and valid either way.

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