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Just now, b_m_b_m_b_m said:

This is the center square in neo lib bingo

 

It's unquestionably true though.  

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Just now, mclumber1 said:

 

It's unquestionably true though.  

It's typically used as just another way of saying "shut up things are fine, nothing needs to change"

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2 minutes ago, b_m_b_m_b_m said:

It's typically used as just another way of saying "shut up things are fine, nothing needs to change"

Are you familiar with mclumber's body of work?

 

Poors aren't paralyzed by polio these days, who cares if the wealth is being consolidated within an ever shrinking group of people?

 

Why are we counting someone decorating the ceiling with their brains in the statistics for gun violence? Also MS-13 isn't going to randomly shoot you in the face. And is killing 5 people really a mass shooting anyway?

 

:p 

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1 minute ago, Kal-El814 said:

Are you familiar with mclumber's body of work?

 

Poors aren't paralyzed by polio these days, who cares if the wealth is being consolidated within an ever shrinking group of people?

 

Why are we counting someone decorating the ceiling with their brains in the statistics for gun violence? Also MS-13 isn't going to randomly shoot you in the face. And is killing 5 people really a mass shooting anyway?

 

:p 

 

You forgot silencers, buddy.

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Just now, mclumber1 said:

You forgot silencers, buddy.

Real talk I knew I was forgetting something and I'm disappointed with myself. :|

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4 minutes ago, Kal-El814 said:

Real talk I knew I was forgetting something and I'm disappointed with myself. :|

 

This is what happens when you get used to letting the gubbmint do everything for you. 

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7 minutes ago, Kal-El814 said:

Real talk I knew I was forgetting something and I'm disappointed with myself. :|

 

You also forgot being perpetually disappointed by a member of the Paul family.

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2 minutes ago, Jason said:

 

This is what happens when you get used to letting the gubbmint do everything for you. 

 

I can sell him some D1P bootstraps so he doesn't utterly embarrass himself again.

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14 minutes ago, mclumber1 said:

 

I can sell him some D1P bootstraps so he doesn't utterly embarrass himself again.

 

How long until the bootstraps become irretrievably corrupted? 

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On 2/16/2019 at 12:06 PM, mclumber1 said:

 

It's unquestionably true though.  

I understand the appeal of the argument, but it’s also been technically true at a general level since at least the 15th century and the end of feudalism and the Middle Ages, owing to the mere fact of human technological progress.

 

Considering the vast diversity of political systems and policies implemented during that time, including systems very much the opposite of (classical) liberalism, I’d say it’s not really an effective argument for any political view.

 

It’s also worth noting that in our specific case, while the poor are technically better off than they were a generation ago, they are also way more in debt than they were a generation ago, and are borrowing at an ever-accelerating rate to maintain their living standards.

 

I think there’d be less fuss about income inequality if those in the middle and at the bottom felt that they weren’t being turned into debt peons to the ultra-rich and could afford a decent standard of living without having to borrow large sums of money. (And then inevitably feel squeezed when they have to pay it back at interest)

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I'm pretty sure it was better in the 1850s compared to the 1650s. That doesn't mean we'd accept living conditions in the 1850s.

 

The rich have far exceeded inflation rates compared to lower classes. That means the system isn't great as is. 

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Yeah while things have improved, the bar in the past was really low. For most of the population life was a fairly miserable condition, and that makes the statement that it's improved fairly empty. It's kind of like remarking to someone mourning the loss of a loved one that at least they didn't die tortured in a prison camp. Yeah... things could be worse, but they're still bad.

 

As a society, I think our goal should be to get the vast majority of our population to the point where food, shelter, and health care are not financial concerns. Right now, that's simply not true, which makes the gross income inequality especially difficult to ignore.

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Someone in 2119:

 

"Man, life's improved where people have savings to pay for sudden medical bills, a $500 bill won't bankrupt someone, and the working class has more power. The poors have it better and the system just works."

 

Far as I'm concerned, everything that's led to better lives has been in the form of progressive legislation.

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I find it pointless to discuss on these boards the well being of the poor and middle class, global poverty, and inequality since I can no longer determine what people really think should be the policy and when people are just being political and trying to move the Overton window. 

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18 minutes ago, Massdriver said:

I find it pointless to discuss on these boards the well being of the poor and middle class, global poverty, and inequality since I can no longer determine what people really think should be the policy and when people are just being political and trying to move the Overton window. 

 

The bold are both answers. The Overton window has been over non-solutions for a while.

 

If "conservatives" in this country had more your ideology, which called for universal health care and more ambitious climate change initiatives while not as progressive in tax policy, then I think the Overton window would encompass things that I think would work and it'd be easier to talk about.

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1 hour ago, Massdriver said:

I find it pointless to discuss on these boards the well being of the poor and middle class, global poverty, and inequality since I can no longer determine what people really think should be the policy and when people are just being political and trying to move the Overton window. 

 

I'm less confident about which policies are best because I don't fancy myself an economist, but I do find it rather hard to believe that the current state of affairs is anywhere near optimal. I'm relatively open to any policy that directly identifies the problem and proposes an evidence based policy to solve it rather than platitudes. Unfortunately, most of politics is the latter to our detriment.

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I’ve been a poor American for a lot longer than a not-poor American, and I never really cared about being poor when I was. I think there can be danger in romanticizing poverty by those who have escaped it, but I also think we speak of American poverty in a way that suggests it’s not a life worth living. I still carry scars left by the way I was viewed and treated by society for being a poor kid.

 

23 minutes ago, legend said:

 

I'm less confident about which policies are best because I don't fancy myself an economist, but I do find it rather hard to believe that the current state of affairs is anywhere near optimal. I'm relatively open to any policy that directly identifies the problem and proposes an evidence based policy to solve it rather than platitudes. Unfortunately, most of politics is the latter to our detriment.

It depends on your goals. If you are like many of my libertarian leaning friends and value personal freedom above all else, solutions to supposed societal ills (like income/wealth inequality) need to be subservient to that. It doesn’t matter if you can have a better outcome in regards to that issue if the means of doing it is a sacrifice to personal freedom.

 

And this is difficult because when speaking of such priorities, there is no framework for deciding what is the best or most important. You can certainly attempt to reason through what is most moral or ethical, but such designations are  a bit fuzzy themselves so it can be another difficult method of determining what is best.

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54 minutes ago, sblfilms said:

It depends on your goals. If you are like many of my libertarian leaning friends and value personal freedom above all else, solutions to supposed societal ills (like income/wealth inequality) need to be subservient to that. It doesn’t matter if you can have a better outcome in regards to that issue if the means of doing it is a sacrifice to personal freedom.

 

I certainly do not innately value something as esoteric as "personal freedom." What we might label "personal freedom" is at most a social policy that generates meaningful impacts on our lives and we should constrain or embrace it to the extent that it's useful. I will go further and posit that people's obsession with something like that is deeply misguided reasoning that betrays their psychological and physical state of being.

 

Quote

And this is difficult because when speaking of such priorities, there is no framework for deciding what is the best or most important. You can certainly attempt to reason through what is most moral or ethical, but such designations are  a bit fuzzy themselves so it can be another difficult method of determining what is best.

 

I honestly don't think it's that hard to evaluate people's quality of life. I'm not going to sit here and hand you a scalar value that's supposedly an accurate reflection of any single person or population, but I think we're more than able to evaluate things well enough to determine various policies. For example, people being unable to pay health-care bills to the point that they actively avoid seeing a doctor making things worse, is a shit state of affairs. I think there's also enough psychological research that shows that people's quality of life isn't meaningfully moved after a certain point of income.

 

I have a number of objections to Sam Harris' Moral Landscape work, but I think one of the excellent points he makes in it is that while we are unable to provide exact scalar values for people's physical health, we don't find ourselves paralyzed from making progress on health care. People's quality of life, well-being, or whatever team you want to use to talk about a person's state of affairs, really isn't that different. Indeed, the claim made earlier that people have it "better" now than people of the past rather explicitly demands that we're able to evaluate things to some extent. I really don't think we've reached such a great state of affairs that we should be feel paralyzed from determining whether we can improve matters.

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29 minutes ago, legend said:

 

I'm not going to sit here and hand you a scalar value that's supposedly an accurate reflection of any single person or population, but I think we're more than able to evaluate things well enough to determine various policies.

 

Your ML model is broken.  Give me my damn scalar!

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2 hours ago, legend said:

 

I certainly do not innately value something as esoteric as "personal freedom." What we might label "personal freedom" is at most a social policy that generates meaningful impacts on our lives and we should constrain or embrace it to the extent that it's useful. I will go further and posit that people's obsession with something like that is deeply misguided reasoning that betrays their psychological and physical state of being.

 

 

I honestly don't think it's that hard to evaluate people's quality of life. I'm not going to sit here and hand you a scalar value that's supposedly an accurate reflection of any single person or population, but I think we're more than able to evaluate things well enough to determine various policies. For example, people being unable to pay health-care bills to the point that they actively avoid seeing a doctor making things worse, is a shit state of affairs. I think there's also enough psychological research that shows that people's quality of life isn't meaningfully moved after a certain point of income.

 

I have a number of objections to Sam Harris' Moral Landscape work, but I think one of the excellent points he makes in it is that while we are unable to provide exact scalar values for people's physical health, we don't find ourselves paralyzed from making progress on health care. People's quality of life, well-being, or whatever team you want to use to talk about a person's state of affairs, really isn't that different. Indeed, the claim made earlier that people have it "better" now than people of the past rather explicitly demands that we're able to evaluate things to some extent. I really don't think we've reached such a great state of affairs that we should be feel paralyzed from determining whether we can improve matters.

 

I don’t disagree with almost anything you said and yet it is not at all what I’m talking about.

 

The really extreme example of the personal freedom position is would you rather be:

 

The top house slave of a generally nice slave owner in the south, fed and clothed and yet wholly owned by another human.

 

or

 

A poor free black man in the north who is struggling for a place to stay, to work, to eat.

 

If your primary concern is with bottom line quality of life metrics, you can easily make the case that it’s better to be a well kept slave than it is a chronically impoverished free man. But I think you would find yourself with strange bedfellows were you to advocate for otherwise nice rich people to be able to abduct chronically impoverished people and enslave them just because their quality of life would vastly improve by many metrics.

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12 minutes ago, sblfilms said:

 

I don’t disagree with almost anything you said and yet it is not at all what I’m talking about.

 

The really extreme example of the personal freedom position is would you rather be:

 

The top house slave of a generally nice slave owner in the south, fed and clothed and yet wholly owned by another human.

 

or

 

A poor free black man in the north who is struggling for a place to stay, to work, to eat.

 

If your primary concern is with bottom line quality of life metrics, you can easily make the case that it’s better to be a well kept slave than it is a chronically impoverished free man. But I think you would find yourself with strange bedfellows were you to advocate for otherwise nice rich people to be able to abduct chronically impoverished people and enslave them just because their quality of life would vastly improve by many metrics.

 

To be clear, I'm not advocating that we use only the most simplistic measures for quality of life. I'm advocating that we evaluate our policies scientifically with objectives. As we continue to better understand policy impacts on our mind and body, we may continue to improve our policies. And in the case of the extreme you gave, I don't think the existence of serious negative consequences from being a slave is at all controversial within psychological research :p

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1 minute ago, marioandsonic said:

sd81bikppai11.jpg

 

I saw the last frame of that in a tweet response to the tweet I quoted, but I didn't know it was part of a larger comic. Nice!

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