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moth
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  1. 1. is this it?

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    • divide and conquer
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1. watch

 

2. watch

 

3. vote!


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i've heard "if you have to explain your jokes, they're not funny". this was only half in jest so let me explain.

the first short is supposedly not political, but based on an i.r.c. http://www.somethingawful.com/d/icq-pranks/icq-transcript-space.php

when i first saw it on tech tv(damn i miss techtv) i thought it was political statement about fear based politics.the campaign ad, which i just found a couple days ago just confirmed that for me.

 

i felt it was relevant because of the way the right wing has been exploiting fear to deamonize their opposition and keep the base motivated.

what was the right's response to global warming? better science? no.

an honest discussion of the chaos that will be caused when we have to get "off" carbon? no.

their response is to attack al gore's motivation and deamonize the scientists actually trying to understand the problem we face. drill baby drill indeed drill these lies into your brain.

now it would appear the right wants to protect the "real" americans from the rest of us.

bullsh*t!

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their response is to attack al gore's motivation and deamonize the scientists actually trying to understand the problem we face.

That's why the calls for "Crimes against Humanity" trials? Oh, no, wait....that was your side, wasn't it?

 

That's why people have been treatened "We need to break laws to make the laws we want......We know who you are, we know where you work, we know where you live. We are many, you are few." Damn, sorry, that was Greenpeace, wasn't it?

 

Wait, I've got it "They're all in the pay of Big Oil!" Blast, your side again.....

 

On a more serious note, is it not reasonable to ask whether there is a possible conflict of interest when someone is standing to make millions (in some cases billions) out of the "answer" that they are pushing?

 

If a tunnelling company was pushing that the answer to traffic congestion was tunnels, you would question their motives. If a comapny that supplied rail infrastructure said the answer to transport problems was more rail lines, you would question.

 

So why should Al Gore, who makes millions from carbon trading (and stands to make many millions more) be exempt? You don't see a possible conflict of interest here?

 

And who has been demonising the scientists? How?

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On a more serious note, is it not reasonable to ask whether there is a possible conflict of interest when someone is standing to make millions (in some cases billions) out of the "answer" that they are pushing?

 

i think a reasonable person would examine that possibility. i don't know, but i seriously doubt al gore will make nearly as much as exxon mobile so we should question their answer to the problem too.

i also think whether al gore is sincere or not has no bearing on whether global warming is a problem.

 

And who has been demonising the scientists? How?

 

maybe demonise is too strong a word. i was on my way out and probably should have waited until later to post.

maybe i would have remembered the point i was trying to make about the fear of the right that global warming is the excuse for a global conspiracy to redistribute wealth, and of course those evil scientists were all part of it.

 

by the way i don't remember saying anything about war crimes, and i'm not a member of greenpeace, i do try to use a minimum of oil products but they're everywhere so that's almost impossible.

Edited by moth
trying to be more clear in making my point.
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by the way i don't remember saying anything about war crimes, and i'm not a member of greenpeace

Don't sweat it. I was pointing out that the "demonising" wasn't all one way. From what I hear there are American political persons who do just that. The flip side is that comparing people who disagree with you to "Holocaust Deniers" and calling for CAH trials is most certainly "demonising" the sceptical side.

 

i don't know, but i seriously doubt al gore will make nearly as much as exxon mobile so we should question their answer to the problem too.

Bloody oath we should! We should question the motives of anybody who stands to make large $$$ out of the "solution" to a "problem". My problem is that quite often people only question "Big Oil".

 

Since Westinghouse is a supplier of wind generators, is it not in their best financial interests to perhaps have the problem exaggerated? I've been reading that the WWF stands to make many billions from selling the Carbon Credits in South America. Is it not in their best interests to have the "problem" declared "real" and the answer to be carbon trading?

 

A sense of perspective might also be of value. Much is made of the ExxonMobil "donations". What $23 million over 10 years? Look up the annual incomes for Greenpeace and the WWF. They could pay that amount annually out of petty cash.

WWF.

444,000,000 Euros last year.

Greenpeace 2001.

139,184,000 Euros.

 

$2,300,000 per year is pocket change.

 

A simple question. What would happen to the funding of these two organisations if the Human component of Climate Change was found to be small? What is in their best interests for the "science" to find?

 

"Follow the money" cuts both ways. I'm sceptical of both sides.

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but none of that is evidence for or against global warming. it's just a form of attacking the messenger.

and global warming is just one example of pushing fear-mongering over discussion.

another example would be the death panel approach to drumming up resistance to health care reform. instead of talking about the actual idea, time is wasted arguing about things not even being considered.

 

i feel the highly polarized society here in the u.s. just benefits mediocre politicians, and i just don't understand why people are so willing to give up the middle ground.

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but none of that is evidence for or against global warming. it's just a form of attacking the messenger.

and global warming is just one example of pushing fear-mongering over discussion.

 

Correct. Remember though, that Polar Bears, shrinking Ice, etc, etc are also not evidence in the AGW debate, as these things would happen when the Earth warms, whether humans have a hand in it or not.

 

i feel the highly polarized society here in the u.s. just benefits mediocre politicians, and i just don't understand why people are so willing to give up the middle ground.

 

It benefits everybody except the US people and frankly, I don't understand it either. We gave up that garbage over 20 years ago.

 

I'm constantly amazed at the polarization in the US. (Using Al Gore as an example) Certainly there was a knee jerk reaction against him from some areas because of who he is. What often gets forgotten is that there was also a knee kerk acceptance of what he said in other areas of the population.

 

He was an ex-VP and a Democrat. For some people, that automatically meant that he was telling the truth. (Just as others automatically thought he was lying.) Being a politician is no guarantee of truth and political leanings have no relevence as to the truth of an assertion.

 

What makes it appear doubly stupid is that it carries over. I'm nominally right wing, so I most often cop flak from the left in net debates. It's quite odd to be accused of being a Republican, or only watching Fox news, or listening to Beck and Limburg (sp?). I'm not an American.

 

Not only do those stupid arguments not apply, they have no meaning down here. Arguing against someones position based on the TV channel they watch? Seriously? You are joking, right?

 

The whole black/white, with us/against us two value logic appears unique to the US and until you get rid of it (and the disproportionately powerful lobbyists) the situation will not improve.

 

You live in a truly great nation. You should have the highest living standards on the planet, but because you won't pull together, you don't. I find that to be a very saddening thing.

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Correct. Remember though, that Polar Bears, shrinking Ice, etc, etc are also not evidence in the AGW debate, as these things would happen when the Earth warms, whether humans have a hand in it or not.

 

i would have much more appreciation for a politician who would make that argument than one who tries to come up with an even more misleading statement as a counter argument. at least that would be discussing the actual issue.

 

how did you manage to get past this in Australia?

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"Drill baby drill" might not be such a bad idea in the short run. Sure, I believe that AGW is a REAL PROBLEM, but perhaps distancing ourselves from dependence on OPEC might open up some cost saving and revenue generating channels for us to figure some viable alternative fuel.

 

P.S. I'm a conservative, but don't accuse me of being a republican :).

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how did you manage to get past this in Australia?

 

Concerning the AGW debate we haven't, unfortunately. We still have fools running around screaming "The end of the world is coming", but they've been doing that for a different disaster each decade, so the message has worn a bit thin. Green groups have also made some terrible boo boos that damaged their credibility and the media had a lot of fun with.

 

More in general, our media is quite different from yours. They are far less fawning to the politicians. The recent thread concerning Maxine Waters for example. As soon as the channel knew what she wanted to talk about, they would have gone through the archives and found the old footage. Then, after letting her dig the hole, she would have been shown the footage and asked point blank "Aren't you being a hypocrit?"

 

There is still bias. The TV leans very slightly left I think, but that could be perception. The papers are split between Left and Right, as are radio talkback. The difference is that they would all rather go for the politicians than each other.

 

Another difference comes from the way our system is set up. The Prime Minister is nothing more than the head of the party that controls the lower House. As we don't have fixed terms, it is the PM that calls elections. The upper limit is three years, but he could call an election 1 year after being elected if he felt like it.

 

The downside is that we have more frequent elections than you do. The upside is that because we have more frequent elections, topics and issues get debated in the public eye more often.;) It also cuts down on the PM saying "The people of Australia want......." to silence critics, since the immediate response is "Then call an election and we'll find out what the people want". Rhetoric is much harder if you can be challenged to "Put it to the test".>:D

 

I add that pork barrelling "Riders" and "Fillibustering" are illegal down here. The first by the Constitution and the second by the "Rules of Parliment".

 

Under normal circumstances, when there is a lower House election, 1/2 of the Senators also face the electorate. Senators serve for 6 years with 1/2 of them up for re-election every 3 years. However, there are "triggers" for something quite different that cuts down on the back room dealing.

 

Let's say Obama was our PM and wanted to pass the Healthcare Bill. (Ignoring amendments just to keep it simple.) He introduces it into the Lower House where it passes. It goes to the Senate and is rejected. It's sent to the Senate again and rejected. (That's two) Now the Senators are getting worried. If the Bill is sent and rejected a third time it becomes a trigger for a "Double Dissolution".

 

This means that everybody is out and must face the electorate. All the Senate seats are up for grabs. So a Senator who is blocking an important Bill had better be sure he's right, because he's betting his job on the outcome. This encourages co-operation between the parties and the Upper and Lower House. The bottom line is that the people get to decide, they will either vote for those supporting the Bill, or those opposing it.

 

Behind all this is the Governor General. If the Government becomes unworkable (happened once, in 1975), or a viable Government cannot be formed after an election (never happened), it's his/her job to throw everybody out and call a new election.

 

This all means that it is much harder to oppose a Bill on "Party" lines, since if you reject it 3 times it might go to the people where you will have to explain your reasons for rejecting the Bill. No good reasons? No job after the election. Partisan politics like you have is unworkable under our system, the psychology is different.

 

The outlook of the people is different too. For example, I can't understand why becoming "President" is somehow like being "Assistant God". President is just the name for the office of "Top Politician". The holder of the office is a politician, nothing more and nothing special. I really don't understand why it's such a big deal to many in the US.

 

We're perhaps less partisan because we're more cynical. Due to complete embarrassing stuff ups by both sides over a long period, most Australians have come to realise that certain rules are true;

 

1. The party in power wants to stay there and will say and do whatever it can to stay in power.

 

2. The party not in power wants to be and will say and do whatever it can to gain power.

 

3. All politicians are liars. (There are exceptions, but few. Politicians will always "spin" and spinning is just sophisticated lying)

 

4. Once a politician gets into power, the lies get bigger.

 

5. The longer a party is in power, the bigger the lies.

 

6. No matter the ideology of the party in power, a section of the populace is going to get screwed.

 

Once these principles were (subconsciously?) accepted, partisanship died.

 

We now tend to vote by issues, not party. It's not unusual to go to a "right wing" (not extreme, just moderate) gathering and finding that many there are from the "Left wing". Not there to make trouble, they are there to show that while they may support the government in general, they don't support it on this issue.

 

We still have the extremes, socialist left and religious right, but nobody listens to them. Aside from being stupid, they tend to bore everybody to death with their constant rightousness.

 

In many ways, our nations are similar but in others, astonishingly different.

 

Cheers.

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"Drill baby drill" might not be such a bad idea in the short run. Sure, I believe that AGW is a REAL PROBLEM, but perhaps distancing ourselves from dependence on OPEC might open up some cost saving and revenue generating channels for us to figure some viable alternative fuel.

 

P.S. I'm a conservative, but don't accuse me of being a republican :).

 

we have seen this (the end of affordable oil)coming for 30 years and failed to make any progress in that direction. this article says there is only 3 years supply in all the areas opened up i just don't think it will help much, but i remain hopeful for the future of bio-fuels.

maybe if we subsidize alternative energy and stop subsidizing big oil we'll be able to "grow our own" fuels and be carbon neutral and opec free.

 

some of my best neighbors are conservatives - even with the polarized atmosphere.:)

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You know I've been meaning to move to australia, even if only to be a street beggar :D From what I hear, it's awesome, and you're right - arguments here get tedious and single-minded.

 

Regarding the OP, I think if you focus specifically on foxnews and the rest of the population, you'll probably find that Fox has higher health problems - being both that most people I know who watch Foxnews like conservative sensationalism, and are usually pretty old - facts pointed out earlier.

 

But really, you could take a few of the news outlets and get the same results - I'll have to dig it up, but recently I heard some headlines about opinionated and sensationalistic news doing far better than news companies that are trying to be distanced and objective about things because people get bored without all the emotion-provoking.

 

I think we take ourselves too seriously as a nation =\

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We're perhaps less partisan because we're more cynical. Due to complete embarrassing stuff ups by both sides over a long period, most Australians have come to realise that certain rules are true...

 

sounds like our politicians just need a little more rope and they'll hang themselves.

there was some discussion the other day on the daily show, about having fact checkers on one of the sunday morning news shows. that might not stop people from saying what's convenient instead of what's true but at least people will know the deal.

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Dudde, we've got a spare room if you want to stay for a while. :D

 

A thought about the media has occurred to me. Peope tend to watch programs that confirm their biases.

 

Your bias could be said to be partisanship, (speaking very generally) so the media play to that.

 

Our bias is that politicians are for the most part lying, cheating bastards who would sell their own mothers and our media play to confirm that.:D We enjoy watching a polly getting his arse handed to him and the media provides.

 

I have no idea if any US President (or major party leader) would be game to try this but Kevin faced 200 people aged between 16 and 25 earlier this year for "Questions Without Notice" (IOW, he had no idea what he was going to be asked) on an ABC program. (ABC here is the government funded media outlet)

 

For a quick look;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kFfdr6JY_s

 

The whole 1 hour program is here.

http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s2811552.htm

 

While long, it does show the high "regard" we hold our Prime Minister. Note the looks of adoration of the faces of the young Australians. Note the looks of unquestioning acceptance in response to his answers.:D

 

Kudos to him for doing it, that bunch of well educated, researched and informed young people scared the hell out of me.

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Your bias could be said to be partisanship, (speaking very generally) so the media play to that.

 

i just wonder if it's more than playing to our partisanship, they seem to be pushing it on us.

when i try to watch fox news every inflection on every word, every glance at the camera with that little smile, just rubs me the wrong way. i'm sure it's the same for a fox news viewer trying to watch the daily show, maybe even network news.

it seems designed to push political discussion off the streets and replace it with slogans shouted at each other.

maybe lobbyists write so much legislation because they have no competition from the people shouting at each other.

 

that is an impressive group of young people in the video link.

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maybe lobbyists write so much legislation because they have no competition from the people shouting at each other.

Imagine the fun if the moderates from both sides got together and started shouting at the pollies and lobbyists.:D

 

Moderates from both sides want the same things. Good education for their kids, affordable healthcare, low unemployment, interest rates, housing prices and crime rates. The only thing they disagree on is which of the not too dis-similar parties is the way to go.

 

The things that unite you are larger and more numerous than the things that divide you. Once people realise and act on that fact, the lobbyists can't stand against you.

 

I'm very happy that the number of "swinging" voters is still increasing. 30 years ago, a seat that needed a 4% swing was considered "safe". Now, a seat that needs a 6% swing is "marginal". If the politicians feel safe, they fail to do their jobs, the more unsafe their position is, the more they listen to the people.

 

The system isn't perfect. In Queensland we have one of the most incompetent governments you will find in Western history. They keep getting returned not because we want them, but because the other side (which happens to be my side) are even more incompetent. We choose between idiots and complete idiots.

 

I put forward the idea at the Electoral Reform Commission some years ago that "None of the Above" be considered a valid vote. If it won, we toss the lot and start with a fresh set of candidates.>:D It went down like a lead balloon.

 

About the young people in the vid. Thanks. I was very proud of the way they demonstrated that they wouldn't buy rhetoric or bullsh*t. I was glad the International students were represented there as well. They and their children will spend time in the nation we are and will become. We may not change to suit them, but their opinion is valued.

 

As to KRudd himself. I think he's the biggest twit in Canberra, more bluff, fluff and bluster than substance and I will be happy to help remove him from office later in the year. However, the open, tolerant Australia that he knows is the one I know and on that at least I will stand beside him and give full unqualified support. All day, every day.

 

I just can't see an American saying the same thing about a President from the "other side". And that's a bit sad.

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