- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Is that a 1st or 2nd conjugation verb?

Posted by: Frenchy on December 24, 1999 at 10:26:33:

In Reply to: Amor doctrinae floreat. posted by Farinata on December 23, 1999 at 16:16:26:

: : : Why do you want to go to war in the first place?; it's a waste of money and resources.

: : So if you had it your way you would have opted to let Hitler go on murdering Jews?

: No. I wouldn't have let Hitler take power in the first place. The heirarchical capitalist nature of the Weimar allowed a small group of extremists to place themselves in a position of power and influence.

: : : : The trick that finally did it though, was Reagans threat of starting up 'Star Wars', another fine invention.

: : : Actually, Star Wars was junked because the software was deemed too unreliable and unwieldy (at 30 million lines of code) to be totally trustworthy in battle situations.

: : You ought to talk to people who have the facts. Tight lipped bunch, but there are ways...

: I know someone who was involved in writing the code; if he doesn't have 'the facts', no-one does.

: Even after the US spending many billions of dollars ($40 billion) on anti-missile systems, there is no reliable way of stopping an ICBM. Star Wars was a technical failure and an expensive white elephant.

: To quote General Shelton, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaking in February this year:

: "The simple fact is that we do not yet have the technology to field a national missile defense. We have, in fact, put some $40 billion into the program over the last 10 years. But today we do not technologically have a bullet that can hit a bullet."

: To quote Representative Chet Edwards:

: "Star wars is not just fiscally irresponsible though. It presents a false sense of security. It is like putting a $5,000 burglar alarm on the front door of your house, and yet keeping the front windows of your house open and the back door of your house unlocked."

: It just isn't feasible, Frenchy; and the US has wasted a great deal of money finding that out the hard way.

: (I note Frenchy has now skipped a number of points I raised; I take it you cede them to me, Frenchy, since you don't seem to have an answer...?)

Hold on Ace; NATIONAL SOCIALIST = NAZI. How does that translate to capitalist? The NAZI's were left of center.

Star Wars; Well, your source and mine disagree. Did your source clue you in on the intentional inaccuracies built into the earlier Anti Missile like Nike and the reasons they were put there?
The statements made by Edwards and Shelton are to be taken w/ a grain of salt. There might be others evesdropping, like certain Chinese researchers.
Remember the hub-bub the F-117 caused when it went operational? There were rumors, but no one knew anything for sure, least of all Saddam. Think that might be a good strategy to use in the case of ICBM's?

: : : None of which resulted in a paradigm shift (with the exception of the printing press);

: : Are you saying that the paradigm that we accept today as normal is the same paradigm that was accepted in the 12th century? the 5th? the 18th? There have been no changes?

: In patterns of consumption, there have been no serious changes, yes.

That's silly; we consume a hell of a lot more today then in the 18th century because we can afford it because that's the result of free markets.

: The pattern of consumption has been of treating the natural world as something to exploit for useful materials; in the 12th Century, they didn't know about the environment as such, but there were few enough people not to overtax the Earth's self-healing properties.

The Earth's self-healing properties? Yeah, I guess that's accurate if your also willing to say that the earth also engages in self-destructive actions too. Floods, fires, earthquakes, mudslides. All of which may kill thousands of innocent people.

: Now, there are. There are simply not enough natural resources to go around; and our patterns of consumption are predicated on non-renewable resources, just as they were 800 years ago.

: Pumping oil from the sea-bed and burning it is little different to cutting down a tree and burning it; you are using the combustion of carbon compounds to provide heat and light; and the waste byproducts are water vapour, carbon dioxide and monoxide and sundry volatile organic compounds.

: The one difference is that no new oil is being formed; trees grow back, eventually, if you give them time.

: : : they merely led to refinements in the pattern of consumption; the power heirarchy remained unchanged throughout.

: : Yeah, Farintia, the people of the 1500's were rabid consumers. And despite the fact that only 5% of the world's population utilized democratic methods of choosing their leaders at the turn of this century, compared to somewhere around 50% today, the heirarchy remains unchanged.


"The rapid growth of the world population is a recent phenomenon in the history of the world. It is estimated that 2000 years ago the population of the world was about 300 million. For a very long time the world population did not grow significantly, with periods of growth followed by periods of decline. It took more than 1600 years for the world population to double to 600 million."

: (Taken from the UN 1998 Revision of World Population Estimates).

: In other words, there were less than a tenth of the people alive then as there are now.

: If the average human requires 1,500 calories per day to survive in reasonable health, then a world population requires 450 gigacalories to survive; obviously a world population ten times that needs ten times as much output to survive. It's simple maths.

Yeah, but it's still the same predictions that were made last century by Hobbes (I think it was Hobbes) when he said that the population growth would outstrip the earth's capacity to feed the additional mouths. So what happens? Some smart ass comes along and discovers fertilizers. Another smart ass comes along and invents tractors. Somebody else comes along and figures out how to make wheat grow in winter.
See a pattern here?

: As for the democracy bit; the present government has never had less of an influence over peoples' lives; the real bosses are the corporates now; and guess how many of them are democratically elected...?
Marxist rhetoric. Sheer claptrap.

: : : I don't. There are some good things about Cuba; especially when set against other Latin American states; but there is also a great deal wrong with Cuba. I never romanticized anyone in my life.

: : I said 'guys like you', Lefties in general, Socailists/Communists, the usual suspects.

: In other words, you were making inaccurate generalisations, yes?

Nope, I'm making an accurate generalization.

: : : : All science and technology have the potential to be beneficial.

: : : Exhibit A: the IgNobel Prizes; awarded each year to research that is felt to be truly spurious and a waste of funding

: (snip my previous examples)

: : That's not research

: Of course it is. The formula for biscuit-dunking wasn't previously known; now it is. It's certainly research and discovery.

That's rich. Well, I guess your right. By the way, what is the formula?

: : that's some shill w/ a phd who managed to scam the taxpayers out of some hard earned dough. Blame idiot buereaucrats. Or idiot college administrators.

: Actually, if you notice, the biscuit-dunker was sponsored by a company; McVities.

Hey! That sounds like market research! That is legitmate research! As long as the corporations spend their own loot, I don't care.

: (Another previous IgNobel winner was sponsored by Kellogg's after doing research on how to make flakes stay crunchy after adding milk.)

: Will you now admit that not all research is beneficial?

Yeah, I guess it might be after all, to those companies.

: (again, a vast gulf, as Frenchy skips over parts of my response he has no answers to...)

: (snip steam engine history)

: : Yeah, I figured you'd go back to the Greeks.

: Actually, I counted from Worcester's work; which is why I said 175 years, not 2,000.

: : I guess you could also say that electricity was a 2,000 year project too since lodestones were known that long ago.

: No, because I counted from the first practical application; not the first discovery of the principles involved.

: (snip history of plastics)

: : : Both of these inventions have been around for some time; they have only been refined into usable forms in the West comparatively recently.

: : You show there is still a use for pedants.

: You asked; I told you. You can find any of this information yourself; I'm not stopping you; just go to a search engine and look around.

Of course a skilled pedant wouldn't pedanticize unless he were asked. Otherwise he'd be a bore.

: :
: : : : : There are no such plans in place; because the oil companies and corporate lobbies are sticking their heads in the sand and refusing to believe that the problem even exists.

: : : (cutting out surplus verbiage)

: : : Not really; read Jared Diamond's Pulitzer-Prize-winning work Guns, Germs and Steel - the evidence is that the Europeans were the result of a lucky accident of location and environmental factors; not any especial genius on the part of Caucasians.

: : Is this a variation on the notion that the populations of Southern nations, Africa, S. America, et al, do not need to be as creative in fighting their environments because so much is supplied via the bounty of the jungles?

: Not at all. In fact, the tribes of Papua, New Guinea are every bit as creative as Europeans; but Papua has no metals worth speaking of and very little that could be used as farmland. Consider what happened to the first Europeans that arrived; they died out while the natives continued to prosper. All races are equal in creativity; it's just that the environment shapes the possible responses of the inhabitants.

So, I guess that the widely known lack of natural materials in Africa account for the lack of cathedrals (even if they would've been built to the Zebra God), aqueducts, roads to compare with the Romans, sailing and navigation discoveries and a couple of other things. Besides, I read somewhere that there were some African civilizations that did build pretty impressive structures, they just weren't anything like what was created in Europe.

: : How, if humans are essentially equal in all important ways, does location produce such divergent results?

: Like I said, read Guns, Germs and Steel.

: 7 of the world's 8 domesticable animals were indigenous to the Fertile Crescent (the area between North Africa and Greece and India).

: Most of the world's large-seeded grasses were native to that area.

: The area was spread along a broadly similar band of latitude running east-west; resulting in broadly similar climactic conditions that resulted in easy migration throughout this area - which led to the exchange of ideas and technology.

: In contrast, America is angled north-south and its climate varies widely according to latitude; thus preventing easy migration (also preventing the easy spread of technology, since little migration results in little exchange of ideas).

Sure, that's why the Bearing Sea land bridge couldn't be crossed by the Chinese and why they couldn't eventually migrate down to Tierra Del Fuego.

: : : : Condidering that those civilizations had lived there for so long I'd have to say they died out from their own ignorance.

: : : Not so; see above. They died out mainly from environmental limitations and infighting over environmental resources.

Yeah, like I said, ignorance.

: : Environmental limitations? Ever hear of the Imperial Valley? Steppe farming? Crop rotation? Composting? Man has the capacity to kick Mother Natures ass if he uses the old noodle.

: You really believe that? - with a repair bill from last year's extreme climate events adding up to $60 billion; and a bigger one on the way from this year?

If the weather causes damage, you fix it. That's what insurance companies are for. Which is another pretty nifty invention, I may add.

: (extreme climate events; storms, hurricanes, cyclones and the like.)

And earthquakes, let's not forget earthquakes.

: : : (That, and the fact that the Spanish inflicted genocide on them because they weren't Christians, of course...)

Yeah, and also to snatch their gold.

: : Just like the Aztecs did to the Mayans, and the Mayans did to the Oltecs, and the Iriquois did to the Hurons etc. The Europeans were just better at it.

: Not, however, because of any intrinsic superiority, though; just by accident of geography.


: Be careful, Frenchy; are you really trying to say that the white European Caucasian is the highest form of humanity? - because you're edging dangerously close to it.

I don't know if 'highest form' is the way that I'd put it, but yeah, especially in terms of advances in political science, economics, science and technology, etc.

I'm not at all quesy about stating the obvious. Feel uncomfortable about that? Don't want to admit those things yourself?
Too bad.

: (I include the population of the USA and Canada in the "European" bracket, in case you're wondering; since the US was built on European lines.)

: : : The 'noble savage' idea is bunk; always has been, always will be.

: : There are many, many who disagree with that. The Wicca people, the New Age guys, the Pagans, a lot of environmentalwackos.

: : : That said, the idea that Western society is any less brutal is also bunk.

: : As long as millions of peoples from around the world keep applying for visas at American Embassies I'll just have to take that with a grain of salt.

: So you refuse to admit that the US Air Force dropped 539,129 tonnes of bombs on Cambodia in the years 1969-1973; that they somehow didn't kill 700,000 civilians in the process?

Smooth seque into Marxist/Leninist/Trotskyite/Maoism.

: (The US dropped more bombs on Cambodia in those years than they did on Japan in World War II; and they weren't even legally at war with Cambodia.)

Obviously, as the subsequent events have shown, not enough bombs were used.

: : : : I have, I read that link about Easter Island. Nice propaganda.
: : : : I'd simply counter with the example of present day Hawaii. Or Guam. Or Japan.

: : : Read Guns, Germs and Steel; it mentions the Philippines, Hawaii and Polynesia specifically, since Jared Diamond did a lot of field work there.

: : But the reality is that those islands are successful because they are supplied by external souces. Modern technology, ships, refrigeration, oil tankers, things like that.

: For certain specific values of 'success'; and over a timescale of 70 years, not 3000.

Well, it's a start, no? And it shoots the example of Easter Island in the ass too.

: (snip yet more stuff that Frenchy has avoided answering. No comment, Frenchy...?)

I don't know, what did you snip?

: : : On the contrary; I will defend the right of people to have whatever political beliefs they want; as long as they respect the right of others to hold their beliefs.

: : : But when someone tries to argue the political theory that day is night and that the Sun revolves around the Earth, they are a) simply factually incorrect and b) making rash statements in a field I do have some qualification in.

: : Free markets, a market economy, all the things that allow people to be free and to do what they want to do is what I'm defending.

: Perhaps you'd like to go and tell that to the Nike workforce in Saigon; who provide the West with trainers; or the Keyhinge employees in Da Nang who provide Disney and McDonald's with injection-moulded toys; or any one of a number of people who are not free, because you are defending the right of the rich countries to exploit the poor countries.

Another real smooth segue.
Look, it's not exploitation if both parties agree to the terms of the contract. If there is oppression or lack of freedom in a particular state, you should hold the state responsible, not a corporation. That's just muddled thinking.

: The only freedom you are defending is the freedom of the rich to extort money from the poor.

Oh geez, it's only a matter of time before you break out in a stanza or two of the 'International'.
Sit down, drink a nice cup of hot tea. Eat a craker, or whatever it is the Brits eat with their tea.
Meanwhile, I'll go out far a Starbucks.

: : Sorry about your expertise and qualifications, if it's bs, I'll call you on it. The world is full of genius' who later proved to be wrong.

: Of course, you have actually failed to comment on the points I've raised. The argument thus far has run:

: Far: There's every reason to be cautious and examine our future; it's not at all rosy.

: Fre: Oh yes it is! Everything's fine and we will continue to be rich and free and happy despite all you nasty Greenies! If you're right, explain X, Y and Z...!

: Far: X, Y and Z; here are the figures and citations to show that you're wrong; here are the case studies and here are the workings.

: Fre: I don't believe you, you're a Leftie; you really want to rule the world and take away my freedom. I know this because you're a Leftie; and it's what all Lefties want to do!

: Far: Here are some more figures, links and evidence to refute what you're saying...

: (and so on)

Actually I'd use this charecterization;
Frenchy; Let's use S/T to the best of our ability, that way we can help more and more people out of poverty and increase their standard of living

Far; No, no! We mustn't do that! There's no telling what new harm new technology will create! Look at the mess we're in today because of technology! Look at Three Mile Island, for God's sake, man! Think! Besides, I'm a PhD!!!

Frenchy; BFD, Although I'd admit that sometimes S/T can be used in a way not entirely conducive to man, we are obligated to use our natural talents to make life better not only for us but those who precede us as well.

Far; Nonsense! Don't you know that it's only a matter of time until we run out of Oxygen! That's right! I have the research right here! The only thing that we can do is for everybody to stay home in bed, stop conumption. Become more at one w/ Mother Earth. Assume the Lotus position and repeat this mantra; Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
Don't forget, I'm the expert here.

Frenchy; BFD, Look, I'll tell you what, you stay in bed with the covers over your head and keep reading all that neat stuff. I'm going out for a chat with my broker so I can invest more moolah in some of these neat companies that are forming up. OK?
And, oh, make sure you take a hot water bottle with you, wouldn't want to catch a cold.

: I've answered your questions with citations, reasoned explanations and substantiated facts and figures. You have continued to avoid the questions you couldn't answer, but insist that you were right despite your lack of any subtantial evidence to stand on, or your lack of any actual study in the field.

And still, despite those hardships, I feel that my position is ultimately correct and that yours is not. Strange the way these things sometimes work out.

: : Remember the guy who predicted that his new invention, TNT, would bring an end to wars because the shit was too destructive? He was an expert in his field too.

: Nobel was an expert chemist; after all, he invented dynamite, but he had a decided lack of understanding of the human condition; and the Nobel Peace Prize is his eternal admission of error; 'I was wrong, so here's a prize to the people who make peace'

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, the human condition. Human nature, as some may call it.
Nevertheless, his later admission doesn't alter the fact of his previous prediction and its validity, does it. There are thousands of examples similar to his.

Remember Fukiyamas "The End of History"? All the rage a couple of years ago and already we can see that the political landscape is not fixed after all.

: And he wasn't speaking about his field, Frenchy. The fact that someone is an expert chemist doesn't automatically make them an expert psychologist. Poor old Nobel was naive enough to believe that people wouldn't engage in war because it was horrible; that had never stopped people before Nobel.

So, If the real problem is human psychology, that's where we should go for answers? Now there's a group of scientists who are always right.

: : Do you think you might have some kind of a God complex?

: No, Frenchy, it's just that I'm arguing on ground I know and you don't. I'm not stopping you from knowing; indeed, I'm trying to explain things as clearly as possible to you, but you are refusing to listen because it represents a point of view you do not want to listen to.

Not only that, I think that your wrong and I'm right.

: : Your always bringing up this thing about your knowledge, sorta like SDF, who has read Marx's Das Kapital, by the virtue of which we're supposed to, what? Bow and scrape?

: You could try providing me with some decent opposition. Doc Cruel and Gee both can - and they at least have the sense to do some background reading before trying to battle me on my own turf.

Oh well....

: I don't expect you to bow and scrape; you are a fellow human being; equal to me in absolute stature.
: : C'mon, get off your horse.

: Pull yourself out of the mud, Frenchy. Get some knowledge. Upskill yourself, and maybe you can fight on me on vaguely equal terms.'

Is it possible that your own knowledge is keeping you from learning new things?

: : I don't know a fcccccking thing about football either. Or baseball. Or basketball. I'm a confirmed organized sports hater.

: Mens sana in corpore sano; I rowed and fenced for my University. I don't hate sport; it's just that a lot of sports are basically just distractions for the masses.

Yeah, but that may be a good thing too, given what the masses are.

: : : : Besides, medicine is predicated on science in the traditional sense of the word; labs, experiments, predictions, repeatability, etc. The science that you allude to is science in the service of political goals.

: : : Rubbish. Climate science is based just as much on experiment as any other branch of science.

: : So why is there so much disagreement by the experts in this feild?

: It's called 'scientific debate'; and you get just as much debate in medical research; pace the argument over the transmission mechanism for BSE->CJD transmission in humans.

Which only proves that the experts sometimes, maybe often times, get it wrong.

: The problem is that this topic is a hot one; and a big one; and one that oil companies stand to lose a lot of money on; which is why they fund lobbying groups like the GCC.

: And free-marketeers like the GCC, because it stands against environmental restrictions on business. Nonetheless, as I've said, the evidence for global warming is now so overwhelming that even the oil companies are starting to drop support for the GCC. Shell stopped supporting the GCC a couple of months ago; Ford stopped supporting them a couple of weeks ago.

: The GCC is dying; and when the 5% who are getting funded to make noise finally run out of support, the 95% who believe that the evidence for global warming is compelling will represent a consensus.

And I'd still say that the connection between global warming and human activity hasn't been proven because climate changes have been taking place for eons. Carbon dioxide comes from Mother Earth herself. What's the percentage of man-made carbon dioxide to earth produced carbon dioxide? I believe that there's a lot more that comes from the earth than from SUV's.

: : : : : Would you go to your doctor and say that bad humours caused malaria, not anopheles aegypti?

: : : : So your point is what?

: : God, I hate it when you guys cut out some of my replies. It's like cheating to me.

: Says the guy who ignored large parts of my previous message because he didn't have any answers...

: : I alluded to quinine. An invention that helped save the lives of thousands.

: Actually, quinine is a natural product; not an invention; it's the ground-up bark of the Chinchona tree; and was first discovered to be anti-malarial by the Incas; the first usage by Westerners was in 1636.

Nevertheless, there's another invention for ya that has done a lot of good.

: It wasn't invented as such; it was discovered; and probably by accident.

Same difference. Chalk it up to serendipity.

: Unfortunately, the malaria parasite is evolving resistance to quinine and chloroquine; and global warming is leading to the mosquito that carries the malaria parasite spreading; currently, about 45% of the world's population lives in malarial zones; by 2100, the Red Cross estimates that 60% of the world's population will be living in malarial zones; including large parts of the southern and central US.

Time to invest in companies that make quinine. Monsanto? Three M? ADR?

: (snip more bits Frenchy didn't respond to...)

: : : Which only goes to show how little you know about me and about my political thoughts and beliefs.

: : What? Are you that complex that I am incapable of understanding your thoughts?

: I didn't say that. I said that you didn't appear to understand my thoughts, not that you were incapable of doing so.

: : I've been going back and forth for months with you and the best you can do is say that 'Frenchy, your just not up to snuff in your intellectual development when it comes to political matters'?

: No I'm not. I'm saying, "look, I spent four years of my life studying this subject; I have a slightly more in-depth knowledge than you do of this subject; I'm not saying that this makes me a better person per se, but are you really arrogant enough to think you know as much about climate science as I do?"

No, absolutely not. But I am awake enough to know that there are strong disagreements by many knowledgeable people on this topic, top flight scientists. Even some scientists who think that global warming could be a good thing, based on historical and geologic evidence.

I'm reading something called "Global Warming, A Boon to Humans and other Animals" by Thomas Gale Moore, printed by the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace, Stanford University (1995), and he makes sense to me.

: : Your a Leftie. Am I wrong?

: Yes. I'm an anarchist; neither left or right; I don't believe in heirarchical party politics. If that makes me a Leftie in your books, so be it.

: : : : If your an anarchist then I'm a full blown Commie.

: : : Do you know exactly what an anarchist is, Frenchy?

: : : If that statement is anything to go by, no, you don't.

: : : It isn't (as you seem to think) a 'halfway-house' between capitalism and Communism. I suggest you read the FAQ before making rash statements about what I am and am not.

: : : As for you being a Communist; well, it would be an improvement... especially over your current state of verging-on-fascism.

: : I don't know how much clearer I could be about beliveing in free markets.

: : That's fascism?


"The Whites must take this as a wake up call and say enough is enough. If we rally together, we can bring this government of depraved Communists to their knees. We should not be intimidated by this self serving, all consuming, government of former terrorists and their corrupt big business partners.

: Our forebears went into this uncharted territory and tamed this country of savages and wild animals. How can we fail if we show the same faith and resolution as they did?"

: Quoted directly from your post, Frenchy. If you choose Fred Rundle of the Aryan White Brotherhood as your spokesman, why are you surprised if you get labelled as a fascist?

Simple, I read what he writes, agree with some of the things he says, not with other things he says, and don't care a whit for yet other things that he says.
If keeping an open mind is fascist, then I guess I'm a fascist. But I gotta tell, ya; Somebody on this board called me a Nazi and wanted me to defend myself. I didn't defend myself because anybody that thinks that doesn't know what a Nazi is. Ditto with me being a Fascist in the eyes of others.
But the really funny part is that both Fascists and Nazis are on the left.

: : Snot nosed kid.

: Wow, like, mature, man...

Not to mention accurate.

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