Statement about Solway and Trump

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Diebert van Rhijn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Diebert van Rhijn » Sun Mar 26, 2017 3:15 am

Dan Rowden wrote:
Diebert van Rhijn wrote:The main problem with your recent posting is not that I disagree or spot errors but that it's all rather dull, uninspired, infected with mainstream knee-jerk lines, inconsistent, womanish and often contradicting with your own views.
Contradicting with my own views? Interesting. Can you give an example of that? Should be easy enough given I've apparently done it 'often'.
Dan, I finally came around to your request and it's not that easy since you haven't put much effort in making your case at all, a bit of truncated type of posts. But I'll try anyway since I think it's important to back up my statements with some substance. If only everyone would be like that!

But lets focus on two examples:

1. "95% adequacy"

Compare the statements
  • "Our own judgements about the 'adequacy' of the media necessarily comes from a place of subjectivity and bias"

    and

    "The claim that 95% of the mainstream media's output is 'fake news' is utter bullshit. It is clear that those making this claim are really merely saying that the MSM isn't running the narrative they want"
While it might seem you are saying the same thing in both statements, it's not. If judgments on adequacy come from subjectivity and bias, your own claim on bullshit is according to your own claim subjective and biased: it would be just the narrative you don't want. The presence of bias and subjectivity doesn' t make something false or just because you say so. And without some arguments it's a void statement too.

Plus there was no claim that I could find about "95% of the mainstream media's output is fake news" although I see after your statement Kevin defining his use of the quoted term "fake news" as "direct lying, or deceptive misinformation and misdirection ... propaganda". Which is in the end of course what most thoughtful people would tend to think when scanning political news, which is different from the technical term "fake news", news thought up by Macedonian teenagers to make a quick click buck.

Now for the second example.

2. DSM yes/no
  • "there's nothing inherently wrong with the DSM criteria for mental disorders or illnesses."
And compare them with the consistent message in what you said in this thread and earlier:
  • "the DSM cannot meaningfully deal with wisdom and its psychological phenomena and necessarily mistakenly interprets them".

    "Schizophrenia is not about greater acuity of certain sensual or cognitive faculties (that's more autism); it's about - to put it crudely and rudely - batshit craziness. Psychiatry doesn't need reform so much as the mental health system itself"

    "Has anyone ever really looked at the criteria for schizoid personality disorder? It looks like the perfect description of any truly sane person"
To me that sounds like you're trying to have your cake and eat it: DSM criteria has no inherent flaws and yet sucks at discerning the most important and relevant mental development in the world (according to your value system). How that comes across is like supporting DSM only now just because how some people apply it today supports your view on Donald Trump.

As for narcissism, the same story was around for years with the last president to the degree of me getting tired of it -- but then all massively aimed at Obama by the many conservative commentators. Don't you have any bone left in you which would find that interesting? All this obsession with pointing out narcissism? Well, I do. For this reason I liked reading some of the book "I know Best, how moral narcissism is destroying our republic if it hasn't already" by Roger L. Simon which builds on the (earlier) work analyzing American behavioral patterns, as an outcropping of family dynamics being deeply pathological narcissistic. This direction of thought is in my view way more promising and explains so well why everyone sees narcissists everywhere but themselves these day. Especially figure heads and father figures. And it's not that it's not true, it's what's missing from the view what's more telling. Anyway, it's getting off-topic a bit although it's consistent with what I wrote before in this thread on how Trump is less of a problem once the various insanities of the society which voted on him are seen in a fuller, more revealing spotlight. It's not difficult to see how Trumpism as reactionary, content-less counteraction is nearly completely created by an equally insane Clintonian corruption going on for too long.

And Dan, your political views seem also at times contradicting with the spirit of the Genius philosophy, as being too commonplace, not far reaching enough, not addressing any of the underlying issues but it seems more to be an excuse to "distance" yourself from people who are actually your allies and fellow thinkers, to point out flaws in Kevin while masking your own and to just offload a shit-load of frustration online. At least that's what seems to happen here. All I can do is to urge to seek a higher road, also when addressing Trumpism and not get too dramatic about it. Getting worked up or over-opposed is perhaps a form of buying into Trump as well. Yes, I guess it's all sounding a tad hysterical from you. And that surprised me!

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Dan Rowden
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Dan Rowden » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:26 am

You call that 'substance', Diebert? I lack time right now, but for the benefit of others here's the context of the Schizophrenia statement. People can judge for themselves whether you're employing it faithfully to support your 'examples'.

http://theabsolute.net/phpBB/viewtopic. ... ain#p90833

Ok, I have 10 minutes:
My statement: 'there's nothing inherently wrong with the DSM criteria for mental disorders or illnesses.'

Your version: 'DSM criteria has no inherent flaws'
Those statements are not equivalent either grammatically or logically. Plus my meaning was surely obvious. My statement is quite true - there is nothing inherently wrong with DSM criteria. That does not mean they don't possess limitations in their application and scope. To be 'inherently wrong' means to be intrinsically wrong - i.e. wrong in all contexts. Or at least that was my intended meaning.

And you cannot demonstrate a contradiction in someone's statements by paraphrasing them.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by jupiviv » Sun Mar 26, 2017 5:29 pm

Dan Rowden wrote:
My statement: 'there's nothing inherently wrong with the DSM criteria for mental disorders or illnesses.'

Your version: 'DSM criteria has no inherent flaws'
Those statements are not equivalent either grammatically or logically. Plus my meaning was surely obvious. My statement is quite true - there is nothing inherently wrong with DSM criteria. That does not mean they don't possess limitations in their application and scope. To be 'inherently wrong' means to be intrinsically wrong - i.e. wrong in all contexts. Or at least that was my intended meaning.

And you cannot demonstrate a contradiction in someone's statements by paraphrasing them.
English isn't my first or even second language, but I believe "flaw"=="wrong".

What is inherently wrong with DSM criteria is that they assume aberrant behaviour to be de facto problematic if said behaviour causes anathema towards or isolation from "others" in a group representative of the norm in what is defined as a healthy society. While its application can *predict* aberrant behaviour, it is still inherently wrong in terms of the philosophy that underpins it and motivates its application. That is exactly why your usage of that criteria to judge others is hypocritical. If you profess to value wisdom above all else, then the judgments you pass on others should refer to the highest standard i.e. the deluded self. The cosmetic nature of said deluded self, e.g. narcissistic, normal, bipolar or besotted, shouldn't be the primary concern.

But even in terms of DSM criteria, Trump is no more narcissistic than any other politician or businessman. 99.99% of people who believe they are qualified to lead a society or nation are narcissistic and, it goes without saying, deluded, in the extreme. The rest are sages.

Kevin Solway for President of the Universe! David Quinn for Minister of Love! Dan Rowden for Permanent Secretary of the Department of Orgy Porgy!

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David Quinn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by David Quinn » Sun Mar 26, 2017 5:33 pm

Pam Seeback wrote:
David Quinn wrote:From a spiritual perspective, you can't really divorce the relative world from the absolute, not while you are part of this world.

For example, consider the act of writing to this forum. If it is your aim to promote wisdom (i.e. consciousness of the absolute) in others, then naturally you try to seek the words that will best trigger wise thoughts in those who read them. But because you don't really know who is reading them or what is actually occurring in their brains in each moment, it becomes a bit of a lottery. You have to make some educated guesses and throw out some thoughts in the hope it will do the trick. These thoughts could consist of pure logical reasonings, or they could involve some empirical theorizing, or some humour, or some insults, or a spiritual quote, or whatever.

In this way, the absolute within the spiritual mind (no existence, no attachment, no delusion, no bias, no mental blocks) meets the relativity of the world (the uncertainty of the senses, assumptions, inferences, guesswork).

If your output is confined to pure abstract reasonings or absolute truths, then it will become too sterile and dry. If it just focuses on empirical theorizing, then it will become too superficial and banal. The key is to keep mixing it up in an intelligent manner.
I appreciate your response here David, and if by the two 'realms' meeting you are proposing that the purpose of this meeting is to remove the delusion of the conditioned relative, then I absolutely agree with you. Obviously this task is achieved while still in the world, there is no other way.

As for posts appearing sterile and dry if one were to post only abstract postings, I can see how this would not attract those who are on the cusp of awakening or have just awakened, and I can see using the worldly relative to 'spice things up' to this end, but as I implied above, the purpose of such 'spice' should be only to attract, not to suggest that the conditioned relative and the unconditioned absolute are the same or equal. Nowadays hybrid things are very popular, hybrid cars, hybrid dogs, etc. but the wise man should avoid this temptation to hybrid the absolute and the relative like the plague.

Using Buddhist terms, nirvana (the unconditioned absolute) and samsara (the conditioned relative) intersect in consciousness while samsara is still active and its conditioned terms are used wisely with the goal to realize nirvana, but at no time should it be said directly or implied indirectly that nirvana = samsara. Perhaps I am missing something, but your idea of the two realms being combined when a decision is being made sounds very much like a doctrine of absolute-relative hybridism.
I’m not talking about a hybrid. There is no really such thing as nirvana or samsara. Both are illusions.

The division between the absolute and the relative is itself relative and needs to be rejected. Only then can you reach the absolute.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by David Quinn » Sun Mar 26, 2017 6:28 pm

jupiviv wrote:
Dan Rowden wrote:
My statement: 'there's nothing inherently wrong with the DSM criteria for mental disorders or illnesses.'

Your version: 'DSM criteria has no inherent flaws'
Those statements are not equivalent either grammatically or logically. Plus my meaning was surely obvious. My statement is quite true - there is nothing inherently wrong with DSM criteria. That does not mean they don't possess limitations in their application and scope. To be 'inherently wrong' means to be intrinsically wrong - i.e. wrong in all contexts. Or at least that was my intended meaning.

And you cannot demonstrate a contradiction in someone's statements by paraphrasing them.
English isn't my first or even second language, but I believe "flaw"=="wrong".

What is inherently wrong with DSM criteria is that they assume aberrant behaviour to be de facto problematic if said behaviour causes anathema towards or isolation from "others" in a group representative of the norm in what is defined as a healthy society. While its application can *predict* aberrant behaviour, it is still inherently wrong in terms of the philosophy that underpins it and motivates its application. That is exactly why your usage of that criteria to judge others is hypocritical.
Your point makes no sense. DSM criteria deals with deviations from the norm, which usually means deviations towards dysfunctional behaviour, but can also mean deviations towards wisdom and sanity. This is made possible because the norm itself is neither wise nor sane.

In other words, we are dealing with a statistical tool here. It has nothing to do with an underlying philosophy. It is simply a system of categories designed to map deviation from the norm.

If you profess to value wisdom above all else, then the judgments you pass on others should refer to the highest standard i.e. the deluded self. The cosmetic nature of said deluded self, e.g. narcissistic, normal, bipolar or besotted, shouldn't be the primary concern.
Surely, it is up to the sane person to decide what he should and shouldn't be doing.

But even in terms of DSM criteria, Trump is no more narcissistic than any other politician or businessman. 99.99% of people who believe they are qualified to lead a society or nation are narcissistic and, it goes without saying, deluded, in the extreme. The rest are sages.
This is not very practical. While everyone who is not a sage is indeed narcissistic to some degree, it doesn't follow that they are all equally narcissistic. People are narcissistic to varying degrees. Some are completely self-absorbed, while others can see a good deal beyond themselves.

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Diebert van Rhijn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Diebert van Rhijn » Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:52 pm

Dan Rowden wrote:You call that 'substance', Diebert? I lack time right now, but for the benefit of others here's the context of the Schizophrenia statement. People can judge for themselves whether you're employing it faithfully to support your 'examples'.
My examples were literally taken from the same search query, Dan, and don't seem to require a context to supply more meaning. But if you think they do, fine! Anyway, are you really making the case that something having "nothing inherently wrong" with it would mean something significantly different than it "having no inherent flaws". If you really want to make that case, then the discussion is over since we then must have not enough any more in common in terms of the meaning of language and the significance of truth. Which would lead to tiresome discussions.
My statement is quite true - there is nothing inherently wrong with DSM criteria. That does not mean they don't possess limitations in their application and scope. To be 'inherently wrong' means to be intrinsically wrong - i.e. wrong in all contexts. Or at least that was my intended meaning.
If the limitation would be that they assess the very thing you have built your life and philosophy around, to be some manifestation of delusional, dysfunctional and undesired thinking, wouldn't than mean there's something wrong with it fundamentally?
And you cannot demonstrate a contradiction in someone's statements by paraphrasing them.
Please, get a hold on yourself! I actually quoted you just above that line. If I meant to manipulate its meaning by paraphrasing I wouldn't have supplied the very quote, now wouldn't I? And I personally don't see the difference, but if you feel there is, feel free just to use your literal wording as I provided as well and was the focus of my whole point!

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Diebert van Rhijn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Diebert van Rhijn » Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:28 pm

David Quinn wrote: DSM criteria deals with deviations from the norm, which usually means deviations towards dysfunctional behaviour, but can also mean deviations towards wisdom and sanity.
The whole purpose of DSM is the classification of mental disorders. Why are you trying to change that stated purpose? And then, after changing its purpose, use it to quote "DSM" as some kind or argument for or against things? It doesn't look like sound reasoning to me. Like Dan, you are ignoring the fact that your are deploying a system of categories which at the fundamental level invalidates your own mind as being unhealthy. That can only mean that at the foundation of such a system, various erronious values and assumptions are firmly in place. Besides that, I read here that the National Institute of Mental Health and others in the field still argue that the DSM represents an unscientific and subjective system. With so many reasonable doubts on the objective, scientific as well as philosophical value of the system, it's self-contradicting to deploy it as some wise system.

To be fair, I remember you wrote about mental-illness being at the other end of the spectrum in terms of wisdom.
Although both geniuses and mentally-ill people both have the capacity to leave conventional thought-processes behind and think outside the box, they preciptate this from opposite ends of the spectrum. As with autistic people, mentally-ill people have no real control over their minds. Their unconventional behaviors are primarily driven by fear, anxiety, despair, chemical imbalances, etc, whereas genius is primarily a product of conscious will and single-minded desire for truth.
Which I never really agreed upon, if I recall correctly, in another discussion, certainly not after being at this forum for a while now. The very idea of "control over ones mind" would be exactly an example of your suddenly beloved "DSM", which will classify typical "delusions of control over mind or body" as prime features of schizophrenia!

Instead of seeing the DSM as having "minor" errors in how to classify schizophrenic behavior, it seems way better to understand how little distance there is between genius and mental-illness because of the leaving behind of conventional thought-processes, socially engineered self-perception and all the cognitive dissonance with ones surroundings. To call one end a result of deep seeded anxiety levels or chemical imbalances and the other end a result of "will" is not something I can agree on simply because there's no indication at all, logically, scientifically or experimentally. It can only be stated firmly as some article of faith, that is: the result of some emotional need for it to be true.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Dan Rowden » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:42 pm

Just out of more than passing curiosity, Diebert, why are you here?

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Pam Seeback » Sun Mar 26, 2017 11:27 pm

David Quinn wrote: I’m not talking about a hybrid. There is no really such thing as nirvana or samsara. Both are illusions.
Of course there is really no such thing as nirvana and samsara, but that does not negate the value such concepts bring on the path to wisdom. At first, the seeker most likely believes in the actuality of both, but eventually comes to realize the error of this belief. As I assume you are aware, the transition from delusion to wisdom is a gradual process. If it weren't, mental illness among truth seekers would be the order of the day.
The division between the absolute and the relative is itself relative and needs to be rejected.
As an actuality, yes, as its value as a conceptual 'prop', no. As long as the wise understands that the distinction between the two serves a necessary function, there is no problem. Distinctions are every sentient man's reality, be he or she deluded or wise.
Only then can you reach the absolute.
See how using dualistic concepts - distinctions - is unavoidable? I'm sure you are aware that one doesn't actually 'reach' anything. You have just given evidence of the necessity of distinctions (division, duality) for the man-still-in-the-world.

Realizing that concepts serve the purpose of either perpetuating ignorance of their true nature or of removing this ignorance is the key component of wisdom. Forgetting this leads to a forgetting of wisdom.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by jupiviv » Mon Mar 27, 2017 12:32 am

David Quinn wrote:In other words, we are dealing with a statistical tool here. It has nothing to do with an underlying philosophy. It is simply a system of categories designed to map deviation from the norm.
It has everything to do with an underlying philosophy. If it were a wise classification, it would aim to identify the root of insanity shared by all mankind. Instead it merely seeks to discover extreme cases of dysfunction. As such, it's only useful for catching serial killers (probably) and justifying expensive "treatment" for spoilt brats and rich people.

The classification per se is neither rational nor irrational, but that is true of all classifications.
If you profess to value wisdom above all else, then the judgments you pass on others should refer to the highest standard i.e. the deluded self. The cosmetic nature of said deluded self, e.g. narcissistic, normal, bipolar or besotted, shouldn't be the primary concern.
Surely, it is up to the sane person to decide what he should and shouldn't be doing.
No, a sane person's actions have to be sane or else he is insane.
But even in terms of DSM criteria, Trump is no more narcissistic than any other politician or businessman. 99.99% of people who believe they are qualified to lead a society or nation are narcissistic and, it goes without saying, deluded, in the extreme. The rest are sages.
This is not very practical. While everyone who is not a sage is indeed narcissistic to some degree, it doesn't follow that they are all equally narcissistic. People are narcissistic to varying degrees. Some are completely self-absorbed, while others can see a good deal beyond themselves.
Firstly, I wasn't referring to people in general. Secondly, even in general terms narcissism is more or less equally distributed. There is nothing preventing a narcissist from seeing a good deal beyond themselves if what they see doesn't affect their attachments. Trump, for example, is able to see a good deal beyond himself, except where his beliefs, goals, family, lifestyle etc. get in the way. There is no indication that his narcissism is qualitatively different (in a dangerous and alarming way) from that. So ultimately it's about quantity/degree, which is irrelevant in a discussion about his political career.

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Diebert van Rhijn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Diebert van Rhijn » Mon Mar 27, 2017 2:12 am

Dan Rowden wrote:Just out of more than passing curiosity, Diebert, why are you here?
To expose all the false thinking especially in all the wannabe, self-proclaimed sages? To test my own reasoning? Really, are you seriously switching the discussion from serious challenges to your confused, conflicted statements to make it about me somehow? Or my motive? Do you know the definition of argumentum ad hominem? Because it seems you're starting to reach for it and I won't let that pass by quietly. You're really going to gloss over all the decent arguments raised by Kevin, Jupiviv, Russell and myself and stubbornly holding on to your private, so far quite poorly defended, rather random looking notions?

The reason I'm here Dan, is that I think too many thinkers, possibly including you now, might have become a bit complacent. They don't challenge themselves after a few victories of reason and some stilling of doubt or desire. But the mind is not that simple, it will need always questioning, always challenging, always overturning any place of comfort or ease the ego imagines to have discovered. And by doing so, I will always challenge myself too. Pushing this stuff out hurts because it's the result of many internal challenges and overturning, a lot of weighing and doubt -- but after decades of training, I got rather good at it and it's become nearly intuitive to spend between a half and one hour a day on forum discussions.

Are you still going to answer the challenges put to you in this thread with more than one-bit answers and tendencious links?

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by jupiviv » Mon Mar 27, 2017 6:17 am

All of the detractors on this thread agree on one point - that David Quinn and Dan Rowden are committing a number of serious logical fallacies by attempting to explain any criticism of their bare-breasted anti-Trump diatribes as the result of Trump's evil influence upon the critics' minds.

It's not only about a lack of reasoning but a lack of basic respect for others' ability to reason merely on account of their disagreement. The overhanging, yet vague, rationale for this behaviour seems to be a nameless, almost Lovecraftian horror about Trump.

To clarify my own position, I don't support Trump any more than David or Dan do. My disagreement is very specific, i.e., Trump is not egregiously evil or irrational relative to other politicians, and he should not be held responsible for the woes the world faces now or those it will face anon. The historical causes of those woes sprawl over decades and in some cases even centuries. On a partially related note, I disagree with David, Dan, and possibly Kevin as well, about the value of the "liberal establishment" from both a material and spiritual point of view. It is an edifice that is sustained not via dedication to wise ideals but through the constant and easy fulfilment of both the vital and decadent desires of a vast number of people. This sybaritic free-for-all sustained on the rapid destruction of precious resources isn't remotely similar to a society of people who value reason above all else. It is a bad tree, and thus can't bear good fruit.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by David Quinn » Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:46 am

Diebert van Rhijn wrote:
David Quinn wrote: DSM criteria deals with deviations from the norm, which usually means deviations towards dysfunctional behaviour, but can also mean deviations towards wisdom and sanity.
The whole purpose of DSM is the classification of mental disorders. Why are you trying to change that stated purpose? And then, after changing its purpose, use it to quote "DSM" as some kind or argument for or against things? It doesn't look like sound reasoning to me. Like Dan, you are ignoring the fact that your are deploying a system of categories which at the fundamental level invalidates your own mind as being unhealthy.
This is covered in my answer above. I fully accept the truth that wisdom is a deviation from the norm and is considered by normal standards to be a form of mental illness. I also accept the truth that they are wrong to consider it a mental illness. In other words, the deviation is real, but our perspectives differ on what this means.

When it comes to someone like Trump, he is perceived to be even more mentally-ill when considered from the wise perspective. His deviation from wisdom is the sum of the deviation from the norm towards dysfunctional behaviour + the deviation from the norm towards wisdom. He is doubly deviant, if you will.

Diebert van Rhijn wrote:That can only mean that at the foundation of such a system, various erronious values and assumptions are firmly in place. Besides that, I read here that the National Institute of Mental Health and others in the field still argue that the DSM represents an unscientific and subjective system. With so many reasonable doubts on the objective, scientific as well as philosophical value of the system, it's self-contradicting to deploy it as some wise system.
It’s just a system of categories, a tool that can be used by a wise person for whatever purpose he wants. Why does it bother you so much?

I think science has its limitations too. It is flawed when it comes to things like measuring wisdom or probing the fundamental nature of reality. But this doesn’t compel me to ditch the whole scientific edifice. It still has its uses in other ways.

Diebert van Rhijn wrote:Instead of seeing the DSM as having "minor" errors in how to classify schizophrenic behavior, it seems way better to understand how little distance there is between genius and mental-illness because of the leaving behind of conventional thought-processes, socially engineered self-perception and all the cognitive dissonance with ones surroundings. To call one end a result of deep seeded anxiety levels or chemical imbalances and the other end a result of "will" is not something I can agree on simply because there's no indication at all, logically, scientifically or experimentally. It can only be stated firmly as some article of faith, that is: the result of some emotional need for it to be true.
I refer you to my blog Expanding the Limits of Genius for my thoughts on that.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by David Quinn » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:03 am

jupiviv wrote: To clarify my own position, I don't support Trump any more than David or Dan do. My disagreement is very specific, i.e., Trump is not egregiously evil or irrational relative to other politicians, and he should not be held responsible for the woes the world faces now or those it will face anon. The historical causes of those woes sprawl over decades and in some cases even centuries. On a partially related note, I disagree with David, Dan, and possibly Kevin as well, about the value of the "liberal establishment" from both a material and spiritual point of view. It is an edifice that is sustained not via dedication to wise ideals but through the constant and easy fulfilment of both the vital and decadent desires of a vast number of people. This sybaritic free-for-all sustained on the rapid destruction of precious resources isn't remotely similar to a society of people who value reason above all else. It is a bad tree, and thus can't bear good fruit.
I more or less agree with all of that. We're not so different as you might imagine.

My thinking on the issue is pretty much aligned with the Chris Hedges video that Dan posted a couple of days ago - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Na_jAtxpmiI. Although it doesn't cover the whole issue, it does highlight some of the most pertinent factors.

In this video, Hedges outlines the historical rise of corporate power over the past few decades, effectively becoming a fascist movement that has been steadily undermining democracy for a long time, which has then opened the way for Trump and his disfigured cronies to rise to the top. In this way, he affirms your basic point that Trump didn't rise in a vacuum, that he is a natural outcome of a long corrupted process. But at the same time - and this is where he (and Dan and myself) differ from you and Diebert - Hedges doesn't downplay the dangers of Trump's administration or pull back from the reality that Trump, Bannon and co. are truly bizarre and malignant characters. He takes both sides into account.

I also support his call for a radical overhaul of society, which includes the liberal establishment, so that it aligns with the basic values of rationality, knowledge, science, openness, cooperation and tolerance, a process that everyone who values these things needs to actively engage in. I agree with you that we in the West have to be far less consumeristic and banal in our approach to life.

Anyway, I think this will be my last post on this topic, at least for a while. I'm sure that by now everyone can see why I began the thread and why I have acted in the way that I have. All the evidence is out there and so people can make up their own minds. I'm getting bored with politics and would like to focus on other things. Of course, it will be impossible to completely ignore politics, given what is going on, but one can still relegate it to a minor aspect of each day and that is what I plan to do. There are some interesting philosophic issues that have emerged out of the whole fiasco - e.g. how to value truth in the postmodernist/post-truth age; how to be masculine in the globalized age, etc - and so I may start some threads about these kinds of topics in the future.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Kevin Solway » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:15 am

David Quinn wrote:I'm sure that by now everyone can see why I began the thread
Evidently to push your political ideology and biases.

P.S. I watched the Hedges video, of which David says, "He takes both sides into account". The video was 1 hr and 10 minutes long. What percentage of this video discussed the evils of the authoritarian left (including the SJWs), the downsides of open borders, and the many faults of Marxism? ZERO PERCENT. So, to give it a score for balanced analysis of the current political situation, one would have to score it ZERO out of infinity.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by jimhaz » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:59 am

Dan Rowden asked:
Just out of more than passing curiosity, Diebert, why are you here?
Discussing things with Diebert reminds me of ordering Chinese food, as per Dude Wheres My Car.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CkdyU_eUm1U

(His desire to argue, his resilience, is actually a good thing, as the forum would have likely closed without this)

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Russell Parr » Mon Mar 27, 2017 12:17 pm

David Quinn wrote:I more or less agree with all of that. We're not so different as you might imagine.

My thinking on the issue is pretty much aligned with the Chris Hedges video that Dan posted a couple of days ago - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Na_jAtxpmiI. Although it doesn't cover the whole issue, it does highlight some of the most pertinent factors.

In this video, Hedges outlines the historical rise of corporate power over the past few decades, effectively becoming a fascist movement that has been steadily undermining democracy for a long time, which has then opened the way for Trump and his disfigured cronies to rise to the top. In this way, he affirms your basic point that Trump didn't rise in a vacuum, that he is a natural outcome of a long corrupted process. But at the same time - and this is where he (and Dan and myself) differ from you and Diebert - Hedges doesn't downplay the dangers of Trump's administration or pull back from the reality that Trump, Bannon and co. are truly bizarre and malignant characters. He takes both sides into account.

I also support his call for a radical overhaul of society, which includes the liberal establishment, so that it aligns with the basic values of rationality, knowledge, science, openness, cooperation and tolerance, a process that everyone who values these things needs to actively engage in. I agree with you that we in the West have to be far less consumeristic and banal in our approach to life.

Anyway, I think this will be my last post on this topic, at least for a while. I'm sure that by now everyone can see why I began the thread and why I have acted in the way that I have. All the evidence is out there and so people can make up their own minds. I'm getting bored with politics and would like to focus on other things. Of course, it will be impossible to completely ignore politics, given what is going on, but one can still relegate it to a minor aspect of each day and that is what I plan to do. There are some interesting philosophic issues that have emerged out of the whole fiasco - e.g. how to value truth in the postmodernist/post-truth age; how to be masculine in the globalized age, etc - and so I may start some threads about these kinds of topics in the future.
Translation: Dan and I have always wanted to one-up big bro Kev somehow, and thought we had him on this one, but now I am realizing I just got caught up in Dan's bullshit, so let me backpedal a little bit before stepping out through this back door...

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David Quinn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by David Quinn » Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:30 pm

This thread has certainly brought some interesting things to the surface.......

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Diebert van Rhijn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Diebert van Rhijn » Mon Mar 27, 2017 6:57 pm

David Quinn wrote:It’s just a system of categories, a tool that can be used by a wise person for whatever purpose he wants. Why does it bother you so much?
It stood out for me simply because it's such a bad tool to quote here even after cleverly re-engineering and reinterpreting to fit a particular discussion. The original context was my observation that a category was misused just to beef up a claim that Trump would suffer from some fully fledged "Narcissistic Personality Disorder", while the DSM clearly states within this category (and similar prime qualifications with the other categories) that "symptoms must be severe enough that they significantly impair the individual's ability to develop meaningful relationships with others". And that's obviously not the case, unless changing the definition of "impair", "meaningful", and relationship as well.
I think science has its limitations too. It is flawed when it comes to things like measuring wisdom or probing the fundamental nature of reality. But this doesn’t compel me to ditch the whole scientific edifice. It still has its uses in other ways.
Nobody was suggesting ditching "the whole" just because some classification from mainstream psychology, one minor, less exact sub-branch of science, appears to be a conflicted tool to use for judging a president by people who were or might be once classified as being mentally ill by that same classification. It appears as unwise, conflicted and ironic. But in the end it's just my opinion and I'm not suggesting mental illness does not exist in the clinical sense, like brain damage or neurological disorders influencing behaviour.
Anyway, I think this will be my last post on this topic, at least for a while. I'm sure that by now everyone can see why I began the thread and why I have acted in the way that I have. All the evidence is out there and so people can make up their own minds. I'm getting bored with politics and would like to focus on other things. Of course, it will be impossible to completely ignore politics, given what is going on, but one can still relegate it to a minor aspect of each day and that is what I plan to do. There are some interesting philosophic issues that have emerged out of the whole fiasco - e.g. how to value truth in the postmodernist/post-truth age; how to be masculine in the globalized age, etc - and so I may start some threads about these kinds of topics in the future.
Good, as I'm getting tired of going around in circles. And I think it's quite clear that opinions are rather divided on the topic you introduced. And perhaps that in itself is a good thing! At least you might start to realize that the notion of "reputations damage" turns out to be a more complex beast.
I also support his call for a radical overhaul of society, which includes the liberal establishment, so that it aligns with the basic values of rationality, knowledge, science, openness, cooperation and tolerance, a process that everyone who values these things needs to actively engage in.
Mind you, new topics in the vein of "how to behave in this age" could become an interesting source of dispute as well. From what we already can see here, rational people can have quite different perspectives on what "basic values of rationality" are! After all, one could easily reason to insanity when starting from erroneous assumptions and no serious reflection on that would happen because of some blind spot.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Dan Rowden » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:18 pm

David Quinn wrote:This thread has certainly brought some interesting things to the surface.......
I'm intrigued to learn I have such power over your feeble mind. Gunna have me some fun with that .....

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by jupiviv » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:59 pm

jimhaz wrote:
Dan Rowden asked:
Just out of more than passing curiosity, Diebert, why are you here?
Discussing things with Diebert reminds me of ordering Chinese food, as per Dude Wheres My Car.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CkdyU_eUm1U

(His desire to argue, his resilience, is actually a good thing, as the forum would have likely closed without this)
I've seen that movie. It totally ate, as do you.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Pam Seeback » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:12 pm

Diebert: Mind you, new topics in the vein of "how to behave in this age" could become an interesting source of dispute as well. From what we already can see here, rational people can have quite different perspectives on what "basic values of rationality" are! After all, one could easily reason to insanity when starting from erroneous assumptions and no serious reflection on that would happen because of some blind spot.
Rationality comes with a inherent blind spot: its function is to divide. Truth 101: existence is not divided. Could the realization of this ultimate paradox not result in the liberating (sane) conclusion that, in truth, the ultimate logical conclusion is that logic is illogical? The realization of the ultimately insane function of rationality doesn't mean rationality should be rejected as the sanest way to communicate collective empirical ideas, only that its function is limited to this temporal purpose.

Perhaps when viewed from the perspective of a foundation/self value, laughter is the best medicine after all. Probably not for the existence this board though.

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Diebert van Rhijn
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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by Diebert van Rhijn » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:35 pm

Pam Seeback wrote:Rationality comes with a inherent blind spot: its function is to divide.
Are you suggesting the view would clear up just because one stopped making distinctions?
Truth 101: existence is not divided.
That truth does not help you to see the difference between a bread and a stone.
And when your kids asked you for food, how did you know what to give?
Could the realization of this ultimate paradox not result in the liberating (sane) conclusion that, in truth, the ultimate logical conclusion is that logic is illogical?
To have any conclusions at all, let alone to distinguish between sane ones and insane ones, would already be a highly logical act of applied reason. Bottom line is that you cannot escape it unless you walk you into the pasture, start crawling and keep on munching that grass. My apologies for the graphic attempt at humour!
Perhaps when viewed from the perspective of a foundation/self value, laughter is the best medicine after all. Probably not for the existence this board though.
Realizing the insane predicament of being alive, as human being, having all these opinions and feelings about things while his own self-existence is like this freaky delusion and the greatest thing he could ever imagine would be still just a blip on a blip, does lead to interesting perspectives. But also that perspective I'd still call opinion. It's also a perspective which might give something but also takes things away. A lot like laughter.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by jupiviv » Tue Mar 28, 2017 12:20 am

David Quinn wrote:We're not so different as you might imagine.
Except, of course, that I *initially* assumed precisely that. I was waiting for you to drop the hysteric act and reveal your actual views about Trump (which I imagined to be similar to mine), but instead you called me cynical, fatalistic and unfortunate/stupid enough to have been brainwashed by alt rightist propaganda.
My thinking on the issue is pretty much aligned with the Chris Hedges video that Dan posted a couple of days ago - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Na_jAtxpmiI. Although it doesn't cover the whole issue, it does highlight some of the most pertinent factors.
No, he only agrees with Bannon et alii to the extent that their views coincide with his own. He is clearly not at odds with the corrupt liberal politicians, since he doesn't mention their many and grievous ills.
In this video, Hedges outlines the historical rise of corporate power over the past few decades, effectively becoming a fascist movement that has been steadily undermining democracy for a long time, which has then opened the way for Trump and his disfigured cronies to rise to the top.
Without the rise of corporate power, democracy in its current form wouldn't exist. Why give people freedoms if they can't use those freedoms to engage in an orgy of consumption? Corporations, financial institutions and a massive public sector able to borrow money indefinitely without going bankrupt are all vitally interdependent.

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Re: Statement about Solway and Trump

Post by David Quinn » Tue Mar 28, 2017 7:27 am

Dan Rowden wrote:
David Quinn wrote:This thread has certainly brought some interesting things to the surface.......
I'm intrigued to learn I have such power over your feeble mind. Gunna have me some fun with that .....
Please don’t bring out those Oprah Winfrey videos again....

If we want to succeed in our coup, we have to go back to the drawing board and come up with another plan. You didn’t tell me they were going to be so blinkered and angry and so hateful of others. Well, you did try to tell me, but my feeble, effeminate mind refused to take it in. I'm such a silly moo moo. Can you tell me what to do, Dan? Can you come up with a better plan? I won't feel safe otherwise. We need to be better armed before we leave our abode again and descend back into hell.....

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