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Re: Question for Health care reform opponents

Von: mike3 (mike4ty4@yahoo.com) [Profil]
Datum: 25.04.2010 04:42
Message-ID: <9d93f40a-bced-41da-abec-c7a9ab2c4b6d@k36g2000yqb.googlegroups.com>
Newsgroup: alt.politics
On Apr 20, 5:50 pm, Neolibertarian <cognac...@gmail.com> wrote:
> In article
> <18bf09f2-9ec4-4c6a-b69f-d50c9b399...@v20g2000yqv.googlegroups.com>,
>
>  mike3 <mike4...@yahoo.com> wrote:
<snip>
> You are who and what you are.
>
> Many have tried, but no one can explain who and what you are, nor how
> you came to be who and what you are.
>
> Neural Psychology can't determine what happens when you think; what
> causes you to think in the first place; nor how the whole operation
> occurs. They creep closer to the answers all the time, but they'll tell
> you they're just dancing along the edges. And they're not even
> pretending to find out how self awareness occurs yet.
>
> The rest of psychology is just rule-of-thumb guesswork and observation.
> The bottom line is, no one understands who and what you are--and
> certainly no one understands why.
>
> Where you happen to fall in some mathematical average won't change who
> and what you are.
>
> Which makes the whole exercise irrelevant. Useless.
>
> You can jump higher than Paul and Mary. Michael, on the other hand, can
> jump higher than all of you. Paul is stronger. Mary is more dextrous.
> You have a better memory than Mary, and Mary has a better memory than
> Michael. Paul is better at math than you. You're better at problem
> solving than Michael. Blah, blah, meaningless relativity, blah.
>
> Yet all of you are "average," if you wish. Or none of you are
"average,"
> if you wish. Or some of you are "average," some of you are above
> "average," or some of you are below "average."
>

Jumping power, math ability, etc., or at least the potentials for
them, is
determined by genetics (DNA). This is not something you have control
over.
You can train these abilities, but the maximums you'll get to are
limited by
genetics. This is well-proven scientific FACT.

But we're not talking about that. When I say "way below average" I'm
referring to socio-economic situations. These things aren't entirely
determined
by the person's genetics or even choices. These things are also
determined
by the socio-economic system.

> But only if you wish.
>
> Consider this:
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Average/Average.jpg
>
> This is your society.
>
> Now, I arbitrarily decide this is "average" in your society:
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Average/Average1.jpg
>
> But you arbitrarily decide THIS is "average":
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Average/Average2.jpg
>
> Neither of us is "right," and neither of us is "wrong." We're
merely
> acknowledging a concentration near the middle of our societal diagram.
>
> But, in the end, we're only discussing something that is completely
> arbitrary.
>
> Maybe we have a big scientific conference, and by vote decide that
> /this/ is the official demarkation:
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Average/Average3.jpg
>
> Just because we agreed upon the lines, doesn't make them any more
> correct or incorrect than any others. Nor does this make any of the
> lines relevant to anything in particular.
>
> Perhaps this is where you fall:
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Average/Average-U1.jpg
>
> Or, perhaps this is where you fall:
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Average/Average-U2.jpg
>
> The only thing we can determine for sure is none of us fall on the same
> spot. We're all of us different, and all of us get different results all
> the time in all things.
>

Mathematically, the "average" is the line at the place formed by
taking the
y-coordinates of every point on your dot spew, adding them together,
and
dividing the result by the number of points. This gives a line
somewhere
near the middle. In practice, none of these points will actually be on
that
average line. There isn't someone who is truly mathematically
"average".

So let's forget about "averages" and talk instead about something
else. I think people should have certain important things like health
care.
These things are important because they benefit the person's survival,
and if you don't survive, you can't do anything now can you? Luxury
items
do not fall under this category.

And more specifically, I'm talking about the case when they can't get
these
things for some reason or another that is not all in their control,
and is due
to faults of the system.

>
>
> > > Entropy keeps you from being a great many things.
>
> > > Eventually, it keeps you from even being alive.
>
> > > None of that's important. What's important is what you do in the mean
> > > time.
>
> > > > <snip>
> > > > > If that's true, then the really important question is: So who's
> > > > > stopping
> > > > > YOU?
>
> > > > Because right now, I don't have the means, as of yet, to do any
> > > > serious
> > > > help. Right now, this is theoretical discussion.
>
> > > What means do you suppose such a venture requires?
>
> > > And how, exactly, do you propose to accumulate those "means?"
>
> > I don't know. If I did, I'd have done it.
>
> You accumulate those means by seeing to your own interests first.
>

But what things would I have to do myself to do that? To acquire such
means? But once I get those means, then I think that the
responsibility
then appears to use them to benefit others. That is the point I'm
trying to make here.

> > > > > > To
> > > > > > do otherwise, I'd think, is selfishness.
>
> > > > > There's nothing inherently wrong with selfishness. Or
selflessnes
s, for
> > > > > that matter.
>
> > > > I disagree.
>
> > > That's not good enough.
>
> > > If you can't show that selfishness is inherently wrong, then you can'
t.
>
> > > But we'll assume that it's because you're incorrect.
>
> > Proof?
>
> It's your assertion that selfishness is inherently wrong, not mine.
>
> It's your responsibility to prove your own assertions. It's how this
> logic thingy works.
>
> Sorry, but I didn't make up the rules.
>
>
>
> > > > > > If someone is in trouble, and
> > > > > > I
> > > > > > know it, and I have the ability to help, and I decide not
to si
nce I
> > > > > > think
> > > > > > I should spend it on mySELF, then I am SELFish, and that
is WRO
NG!
>
> > > > > You can't show that selfishness is wrong--it's just something
you
> > > > > thought you heard once--maybe your priest told you that a long
ti
me
> > > > > ago?
>
> > > > > Consider this: It's a cold, dark night. There's a driving,
freezi
ng
> > > > > rain
> > > > > coming down. It's been pouring like this for hours. As you sit
by
your
> > > > > cozy fire, sipping your cognac, reading a book of some
forgotten
> > > > > lore...
> > > > > and you keep thinking you hear a cry outside on your stoop.
Event
ually,
> > > > > you get up to investigate...and there on your icy front porch,
dr
ipping
> > > > > wet, ragged, boney ribs and all, is the most forlorn looking
cat 
you've
> > > > > ever seen.
>
> > > > > What do you do? Why, you open your front door wide and coax the
p
oor
> > > > > little thing in, that's what you do! You go to the
refrigerator, 
pour
> > > > > some milk in a saucer, open a can of tuna fish and put it on a
di
nner
> > > > > plate, and you sit there in your kitchen and watch the poor
famis
hed
> > > > > thing gobble it all down.
>
> > > > > You know full well that you've now got that cat for life.
>
> > > > Who says I have to keep the cat forever? Why can't it be given away
to
> > > > someone
> > > > else if I can't take care of it?
>
> > > Why would you traumatize the poor little thing that way?
>
> > > You've never "owned" a cat, have you?
>
> > So you're saying that it's selfish either way?
>

Also there's something else I should say about your "cat" example.
It concerns the reason for taking in the cat. You don't take it in to
ease a guilty conscience, you take it in for the sake of its own
well-being.

As for not keeping it "for life", one reason is this: what happens if
the owner of the cat shows up on your door since they saw you had
their cat and complains to you that you stole their cat? The cat
should be given up to a public animal shelter or similar service.
Those
things are there for a reason.

> > You also have to remember that if you take in the cat and do care
> > for it, you have to make sacrifices, too, be they time, money, or
> > both.
> > Is that selfish?
>
> Perhaps you're speaking to self indulgence rather than self interest.
>

Perhaps.

> Doing pushups is uncomfortable and painful. They make you sweat and
> groan, and afterwards you can't even hold a water bottle to your mouth
> because your arms are so weak.
>

Correct.

> Thing is, if you want to get stronger, doing pushups is what you have to
> do. Nobody does pushups because they WANT to. It's a "sacrifice" of
> sorts.
>

Correct.

> But doing pushups is still selfish.
>
> It's the same with women, btw. You don't get the girl without making
> huge sacrifices. Those sacrifices are as selfish as they could possibly
> be. On the other hand, she won't get you without doing the same. It's
> how these things work.
>
> If you want to feed the poor, you do so because it makes you feel good.
>
> But you knew all that, right?
>
>
>
> > > > > Proud of yourself? You needn't be. You shouldn't be.
>
> > > > > Really and truly, you've only committed a very selfish act.
>
> > > > > You see, you'd never be able to live with yourself if you
hadn't
> > > > > brought
> > > > > it inside. You'd have thought about it as you lay tossing and
tur
ning
> > > > > that night in bed...never quite getting to sleep...still
listenin
g for
> > > > > its cries. Worrying if they'd suddenly stop.
>
> > > > So then if I did the opposite, then what?
>
> > > > > You would have remembered turning it away for a long, long time
t
o
> > > > > come.
>
> > > > > A rational, selfish person must first and foremost be able to
get
along
> > > > > with...well, his self.
>
> > > > What about this case, though? Suppose you are hungry. Someone else
> > > > nearby is hungry. There's only one meal available. One has to go
> > > > hungry,
> > > > the other doesn't. You can give the meal or eat it. You eat it all 
up.
> > > > Then
> > > > what?
>
> > > You're talking about lifeboat rules, of course.
>
> > > In a lifeboat, you share what there is of the meal, even if it's noth
ing
> > > more than a part of a squished Snickers bar.
>
> > So then I take 80% and give the other guy 20%. After all, I'M the most
> > important,
>
> Plus it's YOUR candy bar, not his.
>

That doesn't negate the responsibility to ensure both survive, which
means splitting it equally. But to have such a responsibility, means
one has to consider oneself not more important, otherwise one would
hoard the major part of the scrap for themselves.

> But that kind of calculation only works back on land. This is the
> lifeboat.
>
> Your scenario says we're trapped, and this is the only meal for either
> of us.
>
> In that case, there's only one way to survive.
>

You have to split it equally.

> > he isn't. If you were in the other's shoes, would you consider this
> > fair?
>
> You won't survive such an action in a lifeboat.
>
> You both eat exactly half of the squished candy bar--there's really no
> other way for you to survive.
>

Correct.

> > > You won't survive any other scenario.
>
> > > > Or you take advantage of someone else's whatever to benefit you, or
> > > > you just hoard everything even if it could be used to help someone
> > > > else,
> > > > to better yourself, and the others don't get that benefit out of
> > > > whatever
> > > > you hoarded. And so on. This is what I mean by
"selfishness" and wh
at
> > > > I
> > > > think is "bad".
>
> > > You can't define "take advantage of," so that it would make
sense to
> > > anyone else but you.
>
> > > You feel that you could define it, but you can't. You certainly can't
> > > show inherent evil.
>
> > > Don't feel bad, even Dickens couldn't, and he spent most of his life
> > > pretending to write about it.
>
> > So then I suppose you couldn't define it, either. If NOBODY can define
> > ANY of the crap being argued here, why bother?
>
> Good point.
>
>
>
> > > Let's say you just graduated college. Let's further say that your
> > > parents footed the bill. What they couldn't pay, you made up with
> > > student loans and PELL grants.
>
> > > You "took advantage of," didn't you?
>
> > Yes. And those things were *meant* to be taken advantage of -- they
> > are there for that very purpose! Of course, with loans, you have to
> > pay
> > it back.
>
> Theoretically Student Loans are to be paid back, certainly.
>
> But then, if that were the case, why would the federal government have
> to guarantee them?
>
> The banks aren't as certain as you seem to be. And they have the
> statistics on their side. You're no doubt aware that more than one law
> school graduate has represented /himself/ for his first case after
> graduation...in his own bankruptcy proceedings.
>

I didn't go to law school. Perhaps you did, in which case maybe you
can
tell me more about it.

> And just because "they're there to be taken advantage of" doesn't make
> it right to do so.
>
> Forgive me for saying so, but you sound a lot like P.T. Barnum here.
> Just because there's a sucker standing on the street corner, more than
> willing to part with his money, doesn't make it right for you to walk up
> and take it from him.
>

Well yes, it depends on what you want to do with it. See next.

But you've said "fairness" can't be defined, so then what makes it
"right"?
It can't be that it isn't fair, since you've just attested that is
impossible to
define and unknowable. Or maybe it is because of that, but since it is
not
knowable, we cannot also know that it is not "right".

> Did your parents /owe/ you a college degree? I hardly think so.
> Believing that someone owes you something, just because of who or what
> you are, is the road to the worst species of petty despotism.
>

But if you want to make the effort to get that college degree, and you
don't
have the money at the time, and you don't want to burden your parents,
then what do you do?

>
>
> > If, however, someone has some kind of fault or failing, and you go and
> > use that failing to get something, doesn't that just seem wrong?
>
> Pal, it doesn't seem wrong to me at all.
>
> Commerce and capitalism is the weakling's boon--the great equalizer.
>
> A human has failings and needs. If you can figure out how to solve these
> failings and fulfill these needs, they'll give you money.
>

If they don't have the money, then what? That is where "capitalism"
fails.

For capitalism to work, the people need to have the money to pay for
it.
But that doesn't always happen, and it's not always their fault.

> This isn't a gift; it's not a swindle; it's trade and that's what made
> your ghetto infinitely superior to the conditions in Lascaux.
>
> There's nothing so spiritual as a dollar bill.
>
> And it's not just spiritual. The dollar bill has done more good on this
> earth than all the churches, philosophers, humanists and charitable
> organizations and all their personnel combined.
>

And it has done a lot of evil. It has been used to fund devastating
wars
that kill thousands, if not millions of innocent people, and to create
hideous weapons of frightening destructive power. Giant cannons, air
power, battleships, nuclear devices.

The dollar bill is a tool. It itself is neither good nor bad. It is
power, and
power itself is neither good nor bad: it depends on what its posessor
uses it for. And THIS is the source of the responsibility I'm talking
about, the responsibility to use money for good!

> Cubed, even.
>
> > This
> > I believe is closer to what I'm talking about. If you had a
> > shortcoming, and
> > I used it to my advantage, how would you feel? Of course, neither of
> > us
> > has yet come up with a formal definition of "advantage" so I suppose
> > you
> > can't answer that either.
>
> > > Think about all that money; many tens of thousands of dollars. Who th
e
> > > hell do you think you are, anyway?
>
> Modern city living dictates you're downtown all day at work. You get an
> hour for lunch. Sometimes you're too stupid and lazy to fix a brown bag.
> A failing if there ever was one.
>
> Ray Kroc figured all that out. Here's a lunch, priced reasonably,
> reasonably well prepared and reasonably tasty. You don't even have to
> park your car to get it. There were tens of thousands of downtown lunch
> rooms and diners before Kroc--but none of them could guarantee your food
> in about 10 minutes. You couldn't be sure the bathrooms there would be
> clean. Few were reasonably and homogenously priced. Now there's nothing
> but these restaurants downtown--McDonalds, Burger King, Hardees,
> Wendy's, Arbys, Rallys, and all the smaller chains and even mom and pop
> restaurants--and they all follow the same basic model. But Kroc is the
> one who showed them how it's done.
>
> Sam Walton figured out that, because I'm a dad, I need decent quality
> tv's and radios and diapers and kids' winter coats and underwear and
> shoes, but I need them cheap, cheap, cheap ('cause I gotta buy so damn
> many of them).
>
> Another failing; a weakness; a need.
>
> But Sam's been a Godsend to all of us--even if you never shop there. Wal
> Mart makes your local department store sell cheaper and provide higher
> quality than it otherwise would.
>
> You could probably never help me as much as Ray and Sam--even if you
> spent a lifetime in the effort. They've helped out more poor people than
> Mother Teresa.
>
> As an entrepreneur it's your job to figure out my failings and
> weaknesses--and solve them. The greater the service you do me and my
> fellow humans, the more you get in return. If you really do a good job
> of making my life better, you can even become an evil capitalist pig; a
> fat cat; a heartless robber-baron.
>
> Take advantage, you say?
>
> You've heard of the great gold rush of 1849, right? There was this
> German-American who thought he would go out to California for the gold
> rush. Not to mine gold, of course--which he realized was just a pipe
> dream. No, he thought he'd go out there and sell the miners some tents.
> California was far, far away from civilization back in those days--you
> couldn't even get there by train. He figured all these gold-crazy idiots
> would need shelter, since there weren't even towns or hotels out where
> they were going.
>
> He would take advantage of their short-sightedness and stupidity.
>
> Well, when he got there, he found out that all the miners already had
> tents. I mean all of them had them--from the poorest to the richest. And
> here he had a wagon load of now useless canvas.
>
> But it turns out that the miners DID have some failings and weaknesses
> and needs.
>
> You see, back in the 1840's all mens' pants were made out of wool. Wool
> is good for keeping you warm, and it wears well out on the farm or in
> town. But, when you're out hiking in the brambles and crawling around in
> the rocks and streams panning for gold all day...well, it turns out that
> wool doesn't last very long. All the miners were having trouble keeping
> their pants patched. They had patches on the knees, patches on the butt,
> and patches on the patches. And their pants were deteriorating worse and
> worse by the day.
>
> He decided that he could make some really sturdy pants out of the
> canvas. He sowed up some overalls. The desperate miners gladly tried
> them out. And, it turns out that canvas does, indeed, make for sturdy
> work pants. Later he'd get some cotton twill from France--just as
> sturdy, but softer and more breathable than canvas. The crates came into
> San Francisco Harbor marked "serge de Nimes" on the sides. These crates
> and their contents soon came to be called "denim."
>

But this is not really what I mean when I talk about "taking
advantage" in
the sense of doing something wrong. See, in this case, he is providing
a
service to others. But he is not forcing them to pruchase his product.
He
is offering it, and the miners are choosing to purchase the product.

I think I realize now what I am talking about when I mention this
"taking
advantage" that is "wrong" -- it's where you do something that
benefits
yourself but does not help to relieve, or in fact aggravates the
plight of
the one who is being "taken advantage" of. In this case, though, the
"Advantage" you are talking helps to reduce their plight, so it's a
mutual
benefit for both parties. I get my dollars, they get their pants.

Here's an example. Suppose I'm a loan provider, and I provide a loan
to
help someone purchase something. You may say this isn't itself a bad
thing to do. It's another business, after all. But suppose now once
they've
signed in, a while later I hike the interest up to the point it causes
them
hardship. This is the type of "advantage taking" that I am calling
"wrong".

Another type of wrong "advantage taking" would be like if someone was
generously offering you money so you could get food, and you take that
money and buy a pricey rolex instead.

And furthermore, if you have to "take advantage" of someone to get
this
money, then doesn't that give you all the more responsibility to use
it for
the service of humanity?

> You know that German-American, of course. His name was Levi Strauss.
>
> He took advantage of the idiots and made lots of money--by SOLVING THEIR
> PROBLEMS FOR THEM. Most of his customers got poorer and poorer since
> most of them never found any gold. But at least all of them had
> practical, long lasting pants.
>
> All because Levi "took advantage."
>
> Taking advantage is what we all want most from each other--we want to be
> taken advantage of, and we want to take advantage of others.
>
> This only seems evil to the passive slobs among us. And even THEY
> benefit from the arrangement they think they're too good for.
>
> And all these are the least of the stories. Capitalism is such a
> life-giving power, that where ever it's first introduced, countries
> first and foremost have a population explosion problem. Then follows
> poverty and famine--which does little to abate the population pressures.
>
> That's what happens when you receive a few of the benefits of capitalism
> without the accompanying industrialization.
>
> Dr. Saulk is both the most evil man that ever lived, and the most
> angelic.
>
>
>
> > > > <snip>
>
> > > > > Chum, I've been there--more than once...I don't have to imagine
> > > > > anything
> > > > > about your scenario--it ain't hypothetical at all to me.
>
> > > > > Sometimes I had a helping hand, and sometimes I couldn't find
one
> > > > > anywhere on earth.
>
> > > > > Finally, I remembered what I should have known all along: If I
ev
er
> > > > > need
> > > > > a helping hand, I never need look any further than the end of
own
my
> > > > > right arm.
>
> > > > > "The harder I work, the luckier I get."
> > > > >              
 ---Samuel Goldwyn
>
> > > > Then how can some people go and work real hard yet get little pay?
> > > > How does that happen?
>
> > > The universe doesn't guarantee you a living wage, son. It doesn't eve
n
> > > guarantee you a life.
>
> > No, it doesn't. The UNIVERSE doesn't guarantee you anything.
>
> > > 156,000 people died today. Where's the "fairness" in /that/?
>
> > That's just it. The universe need not be "fair". WE, on the other
> > hand,
> > have at least some level of capability for fairness. Don't you think
> > we should
> > exercise it?
>
> Even harder to define than "average," is the word "fair."
>
> No two people will ever agree on what's "fair." Ever.
>
> If "fair" is a situation where everyone ends up happy and satisfied,
> then there ain't no sech thing.
>
> I think what you're referring to is justice.
>
> But the fact of the matter is, justice is harsh and cruel and pitiless.
>

So is it "harsh and cruel" to be denied healthcare because you were
too poor to afford it?

>
>
> > > Perhaps you're an American. Americans have this silly notion about
> > > egalitarianism. They hear "all men are created equal," and they
jump 
to
> > > the dangerous conclusion that "all men are equal, and if they're
not,
> > > The Man must be holding them down."
>
> > What does this phrase mean? It means that people have certain basic
> > rights and respects that cannot be taken away. It does not mean they
> > are
> > the "same".
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/dingding.gif
>
> If a right wasn't given by you, you can't take it away.
>
> The problem is, men will attempt to take your rights away, anyway.
>
> All for the best intentions; for the sake of fairness. All with the most
> reasonable arguments.
>
> Why? Because the universe doesn't guarantee fairness and equality,
> that's why. We, as humans, have the power to change all that.
>

So then why don't we? But wait, you said we can't define fairness.
Because it is IMpossible, then we are forever shackled to the
universe.

> Heh.
>
> And, after all, P.T. Barnum wasn't too far from the truth. The Marks and
> Rubes all seem to believe, just as you do, that men can bring "fairness"
> into this world.
>
> And that it might actually be a GOOD thing...
>

So are you saying we _don't_ have this power, and also should
therefore
not act fair and right?

>
>
> > > The Man /is/ holding you down, of course. But he's only that guy you 
see
> > > in the shaving glass.
>
> > There's the rub! If it entirely depended on them, then there should be
> > NOBODY
> > that works real hard yet gets little pay. It shouldn't matter what the
> > system is,
> > anyone should be able to do anything.
>
> If we were all free, no one would work hard for little pay?
>

What? Where did I say this? You implied with the analogy that nobody
else's
decisions, the government or the system or the society holds one down.
But
this is not true. You can't just go get money. For example, take
getting a job.
Someone needs to hire you first. If for some reason your situation
prevents
this, and this situation is due to a problem with the world in some
way, then
the blame lies there. Thus "The Man" is not just the guy in the
shaving glass,
but somebody else. No wait, he is in the shaving glass, but he's the
reflection
behind yours.

> Heh.
>
> How on earth did you arrive at that conclusion?
>
> > > > > My problems aren't your problems. They weren't then, and they
are
n't
> > > > > now. You stick your nose into my affairs, and you just might
get 
it
> > > > > bloodied.
>
> > > > > If I come up to beg you for some coin, I figure you'll either
com
e
> > > > > across with a few bucks, or you won't. Either way--which ever
you
do,
> > > > > it
> > > > > just makes you a statistic to me--nothing more, nothing less.
Som
etimes
> > > > > the marks give some up, sometimes they don't. Nothing personal.
> > > > > Besides,
> > > > > there's those rich-looking tourists just getting off that bus
ove
r
> > > > > there...
>
> > > > > > In this hypothetical situation, would you have no
objection to 
my
> > > > > > behavior?
>
> > > > > Even in some similar non-hypothetical situation, I wouldn't
> > > > > particularly
> > > > > object to your behavior.
>
> > > > At least you're honest then and not hypocritical. Whew.
>
> > > I'm a Homo Sapiens Sapiens. Of course I'm a liar and a hypocrite.
>
> > > What ever gave you the notion that I'm /not/?
>
> > I was referring to that particular instance.
>
> So was I.
>
> > > > > I've got my own problems. It's not my job to judge you.
>
> > > > > Thank God.
>
> > > > > > If so, *why*, in light of your word?
>
> > > > > > If we have the ability to help (ability here equals
knowing wha
t to
> > > > > > do, how
> > > > > > to do it, having the necessary physical resources if any
are
> > > > > > required,
> > > > > > and
> > > > > > anything else needed to do what we know we have to do), I
also 
tend
> > > > > > to
> > > > > > think we have the responsibility to help. If we are
confronted 
with
> > > > > > someone
> > > > > > in need, and we have the ability to do something, I think
the
> > > > > > responsibility
> > > > > > to help becomes even higher.
>
> > > > > > I don't believe in selfishness.
>
> > > > > Its existence evidently doesn't rely on your beliefs.
>
> > > > By I "don't believe" in it, I don't mean it doesn't exist,
I mean I
> > > > don't believe that
> > > > it is right and good.
>
> > > People believe lot's of things, don't they?
>
> > > Perception isn't reality.
>
> > > Reality is reality.
>
> > And your beliefs are just that, beliefs. "Reality" doesn't give a
damn
> > hoot about them either.
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/dingding.gif
>
> > > > > > > But don't be too surprised if they bite it.
>
> > > > > > That can happen, but who said doing what's right is going
to be
> > > > > > painless?
> > > > > > If anything, we should have to try to see who is likely to
bite
and
> > > > > > take
> > > > > > steps to protect ourselves from that.
>
> > > > > > > You see, in almost every case imaginable, you're not
qualifie
d to
> > > > > > > determine "fortune."
>
> > > > > > So then you propose to do, nothing at all?
>
> > > > > You can't determine who needs help and who doesn't.
>
> > > > So then you'd propose to do nothing, right? No matter how much
> > > > capability we have to help, let's not use it, since it's unknowable
> > > > who
> > > > needs help.
>
> > > There's only one way you'll EVER have "much capability to
help."
>
> > > And what's that one way? Class?...Class?...Anyone...?
>
> > I wasn't talking about ways to get capability, but what to do with
> > that
> > capability when we have it. You say one cannot determine who needs
> > help and who doesn't. Therefore, the capability is worthless under
> > this view. Thus, why bother trying to acquire it?
>
> Because there's always at least ONE person you can help out by acquiring
> it.
>

In what way? If you mean me, then only up to a certain point, beyond
which
any further expenditure is on luxury items. Too much of that would
seem to
be "taking advantage of others for wrong reasons", no? *That* is what
I'm
talking about insofar as "bad" "selfishness". Remember what you said
earlier
about taking the guy's money he is more than willing to give away, and
about
the businesses all involving "taking advantage"...

> > > > > You may THINK you can, but that'd just make you an ass.
>
> > > > > Yehuda was a young man from a wealthy family, but he seems to
hav
e
> > > > > taken
> > > > > upon himself a vow of poverty. Whenever he would get some
money, 
he'd
> > > > > immediately give it away to some poor or sick sod he happened
to 
run
> > > > > across in the streets.
>
> > > > > Perpetually broke, he often went hungry himself, and was just
as 
often
> > > > > reduced to begging for food.
>
> > > > > When he joined Yeshua's band, Yeshua thought he needed to teach
Y
ehuda
> > > > > a
> > > > > lesson about giving away all your money. As they traveled
Yisrael
,
> > > > > Yeshua had the whole band pool their money into a single purse.
H
e made
> > > > > Yehuda its keeper.
>
> > > > > For the first time since his vow of poverty, Yehuda now had the
> > > > > perplexing problem of giving away money to the poor, and yet
seei
ng to
> > > > > it that the Rabbi's band had enough to live on.
>
> > > > So why just hoard it all for oneself and nobody else?
>
> > > Because it's YOURS.
>
> > > You can't give it away any more than you can give away your diploma.
>
> > You can't give away the money?
>
> No, you can only give away the worthless paper it's printed on.
>

And that paper is then useless to you? Hmm. If I give you a dollar,
then it is
useless to you. That's a little strange. I haven't noticed this
interesting
phenomenon yet. Why not?

> > > > Also, I'm not a Christian and haven't studied the Bible very much, 
so
> > > > am
> > > > not all familiar with the story.
>
> > > Judas Iscariot was the keeper of the purse.
>
> > > Interesting character. Even more reviled than Richard Nixon. You shou
ld
> > > look him up sometime.
>
> > > > > Ironic, is it not, that he would later become famous for
betrayin
g the
> > > > > Rabbi for thirty sheckels?
>
> > > > > > Don't bother trying to help
> > > > > > one's fellow man. Interesting. And who do you propose is
qualif
ied?
> > > > > > And
> > > > > > why not get them in there to go and determine it? If
nobody, th
en
> > > > > > what,
> > > > > > back to the no-help idea?
>
> > > > > The best way to help is to demonstrate. Always. If there's a
prob
lem,
> > > > > and you have a solution to it--then demonstrate.
>
> > > > > Since the tyrannical communism of the clan and the tribe began
to
end
> > > > > about 100,000 years ago, you've become extremely wealthy.
>
> > > > *I* did not exist 100,000 years ago. Human beings, as a whole, thou
gh,
> > > > or various groups of them, did this.
>
> > > You existed 100,000 years ago, of course. However, I understand your
> > > reasons for denying, or for being confused about it all.
>
> > No, _I_ did not exist. How did I? Now if you understand the reasons
> > why
> > I don't get it, then you should follow that up with an explanation.
> > Where is it?
>
> > > > > You finally stopped living for the tribe, and you began living
fo
r
> > > > > yourself. And now you're rich beyond your wildest dreams.
>
> > > > > And so is the tribe.
>
> > > > > You don't realize just how wealthy you are, of course, because
yo
u
> > > > > can't
> > > > > remember back that far.
>
> > > > Yeah, because I didn't _exist_ back then.
>
> > > Part of you did. You wouldn't be who you are if you didn't.
>
> > Well, some of the genes did, as did the atoms, but I myself did not.
> > I suppose there is some kind of intriguing metaphysical position you
> > propose here. That everything is a manifestation of some kind of
> > invariant "things" that exist from and to all eternity. I'd be
curious
> > to
> > know what your metaphysics is.
>
> Defining "I" is even more difficult than defining "fair" or
"average."
>
> "'I didn't exist 100,000 years ago', is true enough from a certain point
> of view, of course.
>
> But what is "I" in this instance?
>
> You ("I") exist now. That much is certain, since the evidence is
> verifiable to yours and my own satisfaction. But what is "you?"
>
> A certain string of proteins and amino acids? Some deoxyribonucleic
> acids forming chromosomes; that form cells; that arranged themselves as
> you are today?
>
> The answer seems to be yes. This is why you're you and not something
> else--not a rock; not a coffee table. You're a particular and unique
> organization of molecules and structures that make up your body and
> organs.
>
> The problem here is your body is always changing. Your dna expresses
> different things at different times. For a short while you didn't even
> have genetals. Soon after you became a blob in your mother's womb you
> had genitals and internal organs. Soon after that you were a cute little
> whining-eating-vomiting-peeing-shitting machine. Later on you began
> getting bigger and began expressing more male traits or female traits.
> Somewhere along the line you became self aware. Then your hair starts to
> get grayer. You don't walk or run so fast any more. You're out of breath
> going up the stairs. You get phantom aches. Your skin starts to droop
> and wrinkle. You can't remember things too good any more. Pretty soon
> you're bent over uncomfortably, sitting on a park bench, feeding the
> squirrels.
>
> All those states are "you." Yet when you're 90, sitting on the park
> bench, if I'd show a picture of you at three years old, no one would
> ever believe there's a connection between that picture and you. You
> CAN'T be the same person, they'd exclaim.
>
> I guess they'd have to believe the fingerprints, though.
>
> Beyond that, maybe you're aware of the chain of memories that you can
> recall at will--all of which are consistent with you being you. From
> memory, you can determine the elapsed time from about 2-5 years until
> the present. For the rest, you must rely on the testimony of your
> parents. We can take them at their word--after all, why would they lie?
>
> So you're not 100,000 years old, as far as you can determine.
>
> But what about amnesia? You can lose all your memories and still be you,
> can't you? If you no longer have those chains of memories, did you not
> only lose track of your time line, but lose /yourself/ as well? Are you
> nothing but your memories? In some ways, the answer also has to be yes.
>
> And what of memory, anyway? Did you know, for instance, that planaria
> (flatworms) don't acquire some of their memories the way you assume all
> living creatures must?
>
> You can set up an electric plate in the middle of a table. Put a
> flatworm on the table and let him wander around. When he accidently
> touches the plate, he dies an agonizing death. Take the carcass, put it
> in a blender, and feed it to another planaria. Now, place the new
> well-fed worm on the table. Surprisingly, when this new guy gets close
> to the plate, he'll recoil away in fear.
>
> Memories/knowledge through cannibalism? Who'da thunk?
>

However, how come then that the worm's parent, or whatever, didn't
recoil in fear at the atoms that it took in to originally create
itself?
According to you, the worm existed before what we commonly call
the worm existed.

> The point being, you are who you are now. But you've changed a great
> deal already, and you'll change a lot in the future. If you live long
> enough, who you are NOW will be unreachable to that guy sitting on the
> park bench--he won't remember you any longer. You share the same genes,
> you share the same finger prints, but other than that you'll have
> nothing in common. Just as you have almost nothing in common with the
> you you were at 2 years old. Or when you were still only an embryo.
>
> All those things considered, are you really so sure you weren't at
> Lascaux 18,000 years ago? You're really not in touch with "you" except
> for the here and now. You're not all that connected with who you were
> just a few years ago. How can you really know about connections that
> might stretch back farther?
>

Yet you also seem to presume they exist, otherwise you would not make
the statement. Can you prove that? I can't prove I _didn't_ exist as I
can't
prove a negative. But if you have proof that "you" existed before your
conception, then provide it here.

What is your metaphysics, and where does it come from?

> > > > > Since you don't understand, you think self
> > > > > interest is to be abhorred, avoided, demonized. These things
must
be
> > > > > keeping you from being as comfortable and happy as the next
guy.
>
> > > > > Per capita Real World GDP was about $100/year from 100,000 BP
to 
about
> > > > > 1,000 BP. After that it doubles to about $200/year, and doubles
a
gain
> > > > > about AD 1800. From there, World GDP sky rockets--with only an
> > > > > occasional speed bump here or there. Now it doubles about every
1
7
> > > > > years.
>
> > > > > A rising tide floats all boats.
>
> > > > >http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/realworldgdp.jpg
>
> > > > > From: Estimates of World GDP, One Million BC -
> > > > > Present,http://delong.typepad.com/print/20061012_LRWGDP.pdf
>
> > > > > Now, even your ghetto poor are more wealthy than the greatest
dem
igod
> > > > > at
> > > > > Lascaux.
>
> > > > Which goes to show that "poverty" is relative to the age
one lives 
in.
>
> > > "The poor you will always have among you..."
>
> > > > Back
> > > > in those days, though, that small amount (or whatever its equivalen
t
> > > > would
> > > > be in that time) was enough to get them what they need. Nowadays, $
100
> > > > won't even get you the barest essentials of life, at least not in t
his
> > > > country
> > > > (USA). Back then though, people still managed to get food. They had
to
> > > > do it in a lot more "hands-on" way but they still did it.
>
> > > They managed to get food then.
>
> > > Now, your ghetto poor are experiencing an epidemic of obesity. They m
ore
> > > than manage to get food. And so do their dogs and cats.
>
> > > How is it that even your dogs and cats are obese?
>
> > Well, for one, "junk" foods tend to be cheaper than healthy ones.
That
> > might be part of it. Back in the days (most of the last 1 million
> > years),
> > we didn't have all that crap.
>
> You might not have "had all that crap," but you had a lot more people
> starving and dying.
>
> Just 50 years ago you had a lot more people starving and dying.
>
> The epically foolish "The Population Bomb," published in the 1968,
> convinced the kiddies that we'd be eating our old people by 1979.
>
> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Sp-VFBbjpE
>
> That silly book is still working its magic on you in the form of the ESA
> and Roe v Wade, et al.
>
> Funny thing about us apes, it seems that once you've been spooked, you
> never actually relax again, even when presented with a preponderance of
> evidence to the contrary.
>
> We're not eating our old, or young. And we're all well fed, almost all
> of us 6.8 billion.
>

Uh, there are large populations out there that are not well-fed.

> Besides, lipids are actually good for you--they aren't "crap" or
"junk".
> You can't survive without them.
>

Well yeah, but to excess they become a problem. Junk food does not
deliver the proper nutritional cocktail.

Furthermore, even if the "poor" now are better off in absolute terms
than the "poor" of the past, the demands of the world now are also
higher. Thus from a relative standpoint, there is still a problem
here.

> Epicurus' advice has been ignored since he first offered it.
>

Do you think this was a good philosopher? (Mind you, he was an
atheist btw)

> > > > > Even the cats and dogs in your ghettos are well fed. Even the
pig
eons
> > > > > and rats have clogged arteries.
>
> > > > > > Again, I bring up my previous example. There you are in
that
> > > > > > hardship,
> > > > > > and there I am walking by, despite having all the ability
to he
lp.
> > > > > > And
> > > > > > you ask for the help, and I'll say "I'm not qualified
to determ
ine
> > > > > > your
> > > > > > 'fortune' so I shouldn't help you.
>
> > > > > You should first and foremost help YOU, Yehuda.
>
> > > > And don't bother helping anyone else?
>
> > > Stop putting ascii in my post. I didn't say anything about what you
> > > should bother to do later.
>
> > > You can't help anyone else until you first help yourself.
>
> > No, but once you have ability, once you _gain_ that ability,
> > then you have _responsibility_ to use it to benefit other human
> > beings.
>
> Once you gain that ability, in almost every instance, you already have
> benefited other human beings.
>

Perhaps, but perhaps not. See my earlier comment about the whole
"advantage-taking" thing and "bad" "advantage-taking". And
once you
have
it, why not use it for even more benefit?

>
>
> > > Don't blame me, I didn't make up the rules.
>
> > > > Here's a big Q: What does it mean when you keep trying and applying
> > > > for
> > > > jobs again and again but keep getting rejection letters, without ev
en
> > > > telling
> > > > you what they didn't like? What does that mean you are doing wrong?
>
> > > It doesn't mean that you're doing a damn thing wrong. Or, it could
> > > indicate that your skills are completely unsalable.
>
> > If one isn't doing a darn thing wrong, then how does this jive
> > with the idea that "you" must be the problem?
>
> You're only the problem when you act all arrogant and superior and try
> to "help" your "less fortunate" neighbors as if you were Santa
Claus or
> something.
>

How is helping them arrogant? One doesn't force the help on them, one
asks if they need the help. If you are confronted with someone who
looks
like they _might_ be in need of help, and have the ability to help,
then
perhaps you should ask if they want the help. If they say no, then you
don't give them the help -- no wrong done here. If they say yes, then
you
should give them the help. But if you just turn a blind eye and walk
away,
you're in the wrong.

>
>
> > > Which is to say, those rejection letters are pretty damn
> > > meaningless...unless you create a fiction to give them meaning.
>
> > So then how do you propose they get a good enough job?
>
> The same way Colonel Sanders got his--by not giving up and not sitting
> still.
>
> There's a reason this world is divided up between the quick and the dead.
>
>
>
> > > There was an old street car conductor (and jack of many trades) who
> > > finally opened his own restaurant in a small town. Business was okay
> > > until the highway commission decided to bypass the little town with t
he
> > > new freeway it was putting in. Business dried up, and pretty soon he 
was
> > > forced to auction it off. IIRC, he was then a journeyman for a power
> > > company for a few years and then he turned 65 and had to retire.
>
> > > When he got his first Social Security check, he realized the hell tha
t
> > > was awaiting him the rest of his days.
>
> > > But what could he do? What did he have? No real profession. No money.
No
> > > credit. But he /did/ have his grandma's Chicken recipe that a lot of
> > > people seemed to like.
>
> > > He got in his car and traveled the south. He'd stop in a restaurant a
nd
> > > ask to see the manager or owner. Then he'd make a pitch for his recip
e.
> > > He'd challenge the owner to a cook off--if the manager liked his
> > > chicken, he could put it on his menu, and our salesman only asked for
a
> > > nickel a plate sold.
>
> > > Of course he got turned down. He and the manager would eat the result
s
> > > of the cook off, of course, and many times this was his only meal tha
t
> > > day. Not a total loss. But he was turned down because the owner wasn'
t
> > > impressed.
>
> > > How many times was he turned down? 100 times? Yes. 300 times? Yes. 50
0
> > > times? Yes. He was turned down over 500 times.
>
> > > In fact, he was turned down just over 1,000 times before someone fina
lly
> > > took him up on his offer.
>
> > > When would /you/ have given up? 659? 937?
>
> > > You may have guessed that that old street car conductor and failed
> > > restauranteur was none other than Harlan Sanders.
>
> > > Some people call him Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame.
>
> > > > > That's the only real way to help any of us out in this veil of
te
ars.
>
> > > > > > Nobody else should be helped since
> > > > > > we can't determine if anyone is unfortunate and thus in
need of
help.
>
> > > > > If they beg, you can either give them some change from your
pocke
t, or
> > > > > not.
>
> > > > > Either way, you haven't "helped" them a damn little
bit.
>
> > > > Well, giving to beggars isn't necessarily the only way to help or e
ven
> > > > the
> > > > right way. However, real help requries one to be less selfish, e.g.
> > > > if it means sacrificing anything or doing any sort of hard work to
> > > > benefit the other with equal or less benefit to the self.
>
> > > Don't work for my benefit, Mother Teresa--what you're talking about i
s
> > > voluntary slavery--and that's just silly.
>
> > > I thought you were this big egalitarian and all.
>
> > > You mind your business, and I'll mind mine. Deal?
>
> > > If you want to spend your days looking around and seeing how person A
> > > started a restaurant chain from the back of his car, and person B
> > > decided to live off his Social Security check--fine.
>
> > > But you won't be able to write a happy ending for ANY of them.
>
> > > Ever.
>
> > So then if I see someone suffering, I should do NOTHING to help,
> > because
> > I can't write it.
>
> Help them if you wish. You're the only one concluding you should do
> nothing. I never said it.
>

You have said you cannot determine whether they need help. Thus it
seems then that you are implying that one should not help.

> The rest of what I'm discussing is merely a caution.
>
> You can't help them by "giving" them stuff. You can ENSLAVE them that
> way, but you can't help them.
>

So how do you propose to help them?

> > And who said about trying to control their entire
> > life?
>
> You've obviously never tried to help poor and suffering souls before.
>
> This may be why it seems so romantic to you.
>

So what did you do that turned you into a "controller"?

>
>
> > > It's not a power you possess. You're not The Author--you're just anot
her
> > > character in the plot.
>
> > So who does? Random chance? God? Natural Law? The Devil? The
> > Flying Spaghetti Monster? Who/what do _you_ believe has it?
>
> God.
>

God, then. So then maybe you should go and see what God has to say
about selfishness and what kind of "selfishness" God considers wrong.

Go ahead. There's tons of religious books out there you could refer
to. The
Bible, the Qur'an, Buddha's Dharma, the Bhagavad-Gita, etc. Try then
to rationalize and figure out how to integrate all that stuff.

> > > > > > Without such accurate determination, there is no reason to
help
, no
> > > > > > matter how bad it looks. Goodbye!". And if you were
to complain
, I'll
> > > > > > say "STFU" as I wouldn't want to hear anymore,
since you and I 
would
> > > > > > both know we shouldn't be helping one or the other for the
reas
ons
> > > > > > we've agreed to. And if that were to happen, would you
take it 
all?
> > > > > > If
> > > > > > not, why are you advocating it? Or am I missing something
here?
If
> > > > > > so,
> > > > > > what?
>
> > > > > I'd rather you'd actually help them.
>
> > > > I can't. Not under your logic, since I can't judge who needs help.
> > > > Pah.
> > > > You yourself said it.
>
> > > You can help that cat.
>
> > > But it's a Chinese Obligation; i.e., an obligation that once you pick
it
> > > up, you can never set it down again.
>
> > > > > All you're discussing here is easing your confused conscience.
>
> > > > > > > The worst thing, obviously, is for you to
"help" them by givi
ng the
> > > > > > > less
> > > > > > > fortunate some money.
>
> > > > > > Then what do you propose to do? You don't want the gov't
to giv
e them
> > > > > > health care,
>
> > > > > Mostly because "health care" isn't the government's
to give in th
e
> > > > > first
> > > > > place.
>
> > > > > > and if you had the ability, would you "give"
them health
> > > > > > care? At least that would be better than just "giving
them some
> > > > > > money",
> > > > > > no? (If that is their need -- health care.) If they can't
get a
high-
> > > > > > paying
> > > > > > job because they don't have enough education because their
pare
nts
> > > > > > couldn't afford to send them to college, would you help
fund th
at if
> > > > > > you
> > > > > > had the ability? (Note this doesn't necessarily mean
giving the
m
> > > > > > blank
> > > > > > checks.)
>
> > > > > Quit throwing those mole hills in their way. You just might
succe
ed in
> > > > > making them believe they're mountains.
>
> > > > > My parents didn't have enough money to send me to college. Yet
to
day I
> > > > > purchase my own health care insurance.
>
> > > > > Go figure.
>
> > > > > Oh yeah. Now I remember. I went to college anyway.
>
> > > > > > > You see, people often mistake money for wealth. The
differenc
e
> > > > > > > between
> > > > > > > wealth and money is this: you can give money.
>
> > > > > > So what then constitutes "wealth" to you, and
why can't it be
> > > > > > "given"?
>
> > > > > A dollar is a diploma.
>
> > > > > It's a certification that you did your work, went though some
tes
ts,
> > > > > and
> > > > > got a passing grade. Some people lie and cheat to get their
diplo
mas,
> > > > > of
> > > > > course. But that doesn't diminish the value of your diploma to
yo
u.
>
> > > > > The value of a diploma isn't in the little piece of parchment,
is
it?
> > > > > In
> > > > > all actuality, the nice little frame you put it in to hang in
you
r
> > > > > office is more valuable than what's in it, prima facie.
>
> > > > > If you give your diploma to a guy out on the street, it doesn't
g
ive
> > > > > him
> > > > > the value of that diploma, does it? He doesn't suddenly know
how 
to
> > > > > classify living organisms; he can't now explain the Pythagorean
> > > > > Theorem;
> > > > > he can't instantly begin reciting Shakespeare's sonnets.
>
> > > > So then to you, wealth is "intangibles" like knowledge and
other no
n-
> > > > material
> > > > things? That's interesting, since that's what I'd say true wealth
> > > > really is.
>
> > > There only one kind of wealth.
>
> > So is that it?
>
> The only kind of wealth there is, is the wealth that is yours.
>

So then why not use it to do something to help someone else?

>
>
> > > > Someone could be poor in the material, and yet rich in the non-
> > > > material
> > > > things.
>
> > > We're all as rich as we'll ever be, right now.
>
> > So then it doesn't matter what you do. It doesn't matter if you go
> > "earn" a lot of wealth or don't. It doesn't make one drop of
> > difference,
> > since we're can't be any richer, right?
>
> Exactly.
>

So then according to that, we don't need to care at all about how our
system works, since everyone is already "equal" of wealth, and it
doesn't
matter if there's any "glaring" inequality -- it's all illusion.

>
>
> > > "Kindly remember that he whom you call your slave sprang from the
sam
e
> > > stock, is smiled upon by the same skies, and on equal terms with
> > > yourself breathes, lives, and dies. It is just as possible for you to
> > > see in him a free-born man as for him to see in you a slave."
> > >               ---Seneca (AD 65)
>
> > > > > Did you know that 70% of lottery winners are back to being
broke 
inside
> > > > > 5 years?
>
> > > > > Why do you suppose that is?
>
> > > > Because they super-spent it all instead of managing it wisely. You
> > > > don't
> > > > spend all your money away so fast you make yourself broke. Well, yo
u
> > > > _shouldn't_.
>
> > > You only understand /that/ when you've earned what you have.
>
> > > Don't blame me, I didn't make up the rules.
>
> > > > > > > Other than that, you need (for your own sake) to see
to it th
at
> > > > > > > everyone
> > > > > > > has all the choices and opportunities possible.
>
> > > > > > > But never, ever, ever forget: opportunity doesn't =
success
.
>
> > > > > > No, opportunity doesn't "equal" success, and I
didn't say it di
d. You
> > > > > > have to seize it, otherwise it slips by.
>
> > > > > Well Cochise, there's nothing about /your help/ in that
equation,
is
> > > > > there?
>
> > > > No, and I didn't inject it. I'm not sure what the point here is.
>
> > > That your help isn't required by anyone...but by you...to give it.
>
> > > They don't need your help; you need to give it.
>
> > So then stick to your word. Don't help anyone at all in any of their
> > plight.
>
> What I said was: don't /pretend/ to help.
>

No you didn't. You said "they don't need my help". Why should I give
it to them?

> Pretending only helps /you/. And it doesn't even do that, in the end.
>
>
>
> > > > > > > > > The United States government isn't suited
to "solving" an
yone's
> > > > > > > > > "crisis." The Law is just a big,
dumb, brutish monster--a
nd the
> > > > > > > > > only way
> > > > > > > > > you can get along with it is to let it out
of its cage br
iefly,
> > > > > > > > > sparingly, only when absolutely necessary.
>
> > > > > > > > Then provide a non-government solution.
>
> > > > > > > Solution to what?
>
> > > > > > > Entropy?
>
> > > > > > > Can't help you, sorry.
>
> > > > > > Solution to the crises you say the government can't solve.
>
> > > > > It's not just me. The only ones telling you the government can
so
lve
> > > > > problems are lying to you.
>
> > > > > And they've been lying about it for eons.
>
> > > > > > > > > If We the People decide to foot the bill
for some poor
> > > > > > > > > citizens'
> > > > > > > > > health
> > > > > > > > > care insurance, then that's that.
>
> > > > > > > > > As you know, the "47 million"
figure was a lie. It was qu
ickly
> > > > > > > > > reduced
> > > > > > > > > to 30 million when the press started
looking into it (acc
ording
> > > > > > > > > to
> > > > > > > > > Obama's spokespeople, this was because he
opted to not in
clude
> > > > > > > > > 17
> > > > > > > > > million illegal aliens anymore). More than
half that rema
ining
> > > > > > > > > number is
> > > > > > > > > composed of people who can afford health
insurance (75k/y
ear or
> > > > > > > > > more),
> > > > > > > > > but choose not to purchase it (mostly
young, single and h
ealthy
> > > > > > > > > people).
> > > > > > > > > This leaves about 12 million citizens who
actually "fall
> > > > > > > > > between
> > > > > > > > > the
> > > > > > > > > cracks."
>
> > > > > > > > And what do you do about those 12 million? I
suppose a plan
to
> > > > > > > > target
> > > > > > > > them
> > > > > > > > could be done a lot cheaper than the one going
through now 
(cheap
> > > > > > > > enough for
> > > > > > > > you?)?
>
> > > > > > > > Also, I'd be curious: what are all your sources?
I've heard
these
> > > > > > > > various figures
> > > > > > > > from various parties involved in this thing, but
where do t
hey
> > > > > > > > come
> > > > > > > > from? I want
> > > > > > > > the _facts_ behind this stuff.
>
> > > > > > > All the figures come from the Census. Census dot Gov.
I used 
to
> > > > > > > have
> > > > > > > the
> > > > > > > link in my notes, but they're not handy and it's
getting late
--I
> > > > > > > know
> > > > > > > you can search the articles/report there. Stay within
2008 fo
r your
> > > > > > > search. Believe me, it's not very hard to find.
>
> > > > > > I found the tables. Interesting. However, I'm not sure if
every
one
> > > > > > who
> > > > > > makes over X amount automatically _must_ be simply not
getting
> > > > > > insurance because they don't want to, as opposed to
getting it
> > > > > > because of something else that disqualified them or
otherwise
> > > > > > created hurdles.
>
> > > > > Lying on your insurance application can leave you without
health
> > > > > insurance, for instance.
>
> > > > And if you don't lie or do anything dishonest, you'll get it? No if
s
> > > > or buts?
> > > > Emm... I'm sorry, but things don't work that way.
>
> > > An 80% system is about a good as you'll do in this Vale of Tears.
>
> > > The "100% system" that they're pretending to create will be far
worse
> > > for everyone by every conceivable measure. This isn't a guess--the
"1
00%
> > > systems" already created for countries around the industrial world
ar
e
> > > pretty grim by your spoiled American sensibilities.
>
> > > The problem with this universe is, you never really know what you got
> > > until it's gone.
>
> > > > > > > > > If We the People think they should be
covered, then they 
should
> > > > > > > > > be
> > > > > > > > > covered...by Medicaid (which is already
broke) or SCHIP (
which
> > > > > > > > > is
> > > > > > > > > already broke).
>
> > > > > > > > > Such a simple and clear solution was never
on the table, 
was
> > > > > > > > > it?
>
> > > > > > > > So then why aren't they covered by it?
>
> > > > > > > IIRC, the Census reports that some actually are
covered, but 
aren't
> > > > > > > aware they can apply. For the rest, it's just a
matter of inc
ome
> > > > > > > bracket.
>
> > > > > > So if they don't have enough income, why not do something
to he
lp
> > > > > > them?
>
> > > > > You can't.
>
> > > > > In that instance, all you can do is "help" your
conscience while 
you're
> > > > > making an even greater mess for everyone else.
>
> > > > What kind of "help" are you thinking? As you mentioned,
just giving
> > > > away money won't cut it. And that's not what I was thinking about. 
I
> > > > myself am not sure how one would do it, though I'd think a good way
> > > > might be to do something about the failures of the system that lead
> > > > to poverty.
>
> > > In a free society there are no "failures of the system" to fall
back
> > > upon.
>
> > If there is a SYSTEM, it can fail. The only true "Free society" in
> > which
> > there would be no "system" that could fail would be "free"
in every
> > sense of the word. No laws, no rules, no nothing. Jungle rule. Animal
> > kingdom type stuff. Dog eat dog. The whole shebang. If there is a
> > system that in any way has any power over your life, then a problem
> > there can impact your life.
>
> Anarchy is the greatest of tyrannies, of course.
>
> For liberty to exist, it must exist within an order.
>
> A voluntary order is called for.
>

Of course. So then what is the problem with including in that order
services
like public healthcare?

> This was much easier back in the days when civics and logic were still
> part of the curriculum. But not impossible, even today. Perhaps far more
> possible today, if we'd only decide to make the effort.
>
> And by "effort," I mean: brushing aside all the monkeys standing in our
> way.
>
>
>
> > > There are only failures.
>
> > > You don't want a free society. Which is fine for /you/. Just stay out
of
> > > my front yard and we'll get along great.
>
> > > > First we have to admit they EXIST, that is, we have to
> > > > admit
> > > > that poverty is not always or even most of the times, all the fault
of
> > > > the
> > > > person in poverty.
>
> > > "The poor you will always have among you..."
>
> > > > <snip>
> > > > > > So then does this mean that you oppose these programs and
would
like
> > > > > > them shut down?
>
> > > > > I could live with similar programs, if We the People insist.
>
> > > > > But you gotta stop lying to me about them.
>
> > > > And what are the "lies" I've told you about them?
>
> > > That they're "funded."
>
> > > The greatest lie of the 20th and 21st Centuries.
>
> > So then what is the TRUTH behind them?
>
> That we are drowning in the regime of the populist-bureaucracy, and all
> that that implies.
>
> > > > <snip>
> > > > > > And what then would you do?
>
> > > > > If we can heard the government back into its cage, what else IS
t
here
> > > > > to
> > > > > do?
>
> > > > > You go back to minding your own business, that's what you do.
>
> > > > So then that's what you'd do?
>
> > > Every chance I get, Cochise.
>
> > Good, at least you stick by your word.
>
> http://www.elihu.envy.nu/NeoPics/Sounds/alpacinoballs.mp3
>
>
>
> > > > > > <snip>
> > > > > > > > So if YOU wanted to fix the system, how would
YOU do it, an
d how
> > > > > > > > would
> > > > > > > > you help those 12 million people?
>
> > > > > > > By giving them a damn chance.
>
> > > > > > A chance to what? Get jobs? How would you do that? And if
so, d
oes
> > > > > > this mean you admit that not everyone who doesn't have a
job is
> > > > > > necessarily that way because they are lazy and that indeed
the
> > > > > > System CAN cause trouble? If so, why advocate a fix, when
it's 
a "law
> > > > > > of the universe" it'll always "hammer", as
you mentioned earlie
r?
> > > > > > It's
> > > > > > not
> > > > > > gonna be PERFECT, and it'll NEVER be PERFECT, but that
doesn't
> > > > > > mean it can't be made BETTER and a LOT better than what we
have
> > > > > > now. Right now, what we have is very, very, very, very far
from
> > > > > > "perfect".
> > > > > > America isn't even the best nation on the planet. Much
less a p
erfect
> > > > > > one.
>
> > > > > See, you obviously DON'T know anything about the
"problems," nor 
how to
> > > > > "solve" them.
>
> > > > > Good thing it's not your job, innit?
>
> > > > Then I want to learn about the problems and how to solve them. That
> > > > way
> > > > I could have that job, and wouldn't that be a good thing?
>
> > > Then learn about the problems that are right before you, this minute.
>
> > Like what?
>
> While "I" may be difficult to pin down in a meaningful definition, we
> can be sure of this much: I am not you.
>
> I didn't say "learn about the problems that are right before ME."
>

I didn't say that. I wanted to know how I could find out those
problems
with the WORLD that need to be fixed -- the problems you were
referring
to when you said:

"See, you obviously DON'T know anything about the "problems," nor how
to
"solve" them."

Those are the problems I want to find out about. Since you somehow
are able to know I don't know about these problems, that suggests you
do, in which case you should be able to tell me.

> Besides, you're merely evading, anyway.
>

How do you know?

> I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that you already know all about the
> problems that are right before you, this minute. I'll go further and
> guess that you already have many of the answers to them.
>

Some of them, yes. If that is you mean my own personal problems. But
as for helping the world and humanity? The hell I haven't much of a
clue
as to what all the problems would be, much less what I could do to
solve
any of it. You yourself even apparently were able to determine this
when
you said, and I'll quote it again to hold you to it:

"See, you obviously DON'T know anything about the "problems," nor how
to
"solve" them."

This in response to talking about solving problems with the world.
You, on the other hand, appear to, since you said that I don't know
it, implying
that you do (otherwise how could you determine I didn't know it)?

> You're just reluctant to admit it. Maybe even to yourself.
>
> Admitting to something can be the same as committing to something.
>
> Committing to something was difficult for the apes at Lascaux. It's
> still difficult for the apes in America of the 21st Century.
>
> Homo Sapiens means "Clever Man," which is apt enough. Sometimes, though,
> I think a better designation would be Homo Ignavus.
>
> > > Some you can do something about, some you can't.
>
> > > Sort them out and get busy.
>
> > > And for Heaven's Sake, don't send you police over to my house to
"mak
e
> > > everything equal."
>
> > I don't have no police.
>
> You haven't discovered it yet, but you have all sorts of servants,
> police included.
>

Like who? Tell me who it is.

> You have so damn many of servants, you can't even afford the payroll.
>

Tell me who it is.

> Your predecessors have thought as you do; that we need to help the less
> fortunate among us, mostly by giving them stuff for free.
>
> They discovered what you haven't yet: that the government can be used to
> make everything "fair."
>
> But for that, you need police.
>

So how are "police" used, for example, to give public healthcare in
those
countries that have such systems (Europe, Canada, and most of the rest
of the world)?

>
>
> > > > > > > > <snip>
> > > > > > > > > Nor government. Nor laws.
>
> > > > > > > > > Laws are force. You can't force the heart.
Nor the mind.
>
> > > > > > > > No, such problems can't be solved with force.
That's just i
t. So
> > > > > > > > what
> > > > > > > > do
> > > > > > > > you propose to do about it?
>
> > > > > > > What are you asking ME for?
>
> > > > > > A proposal as to what _to do_ as opposed to just claims
about w
hat
> > > > > > _not to do_. You say more government is not the answer. So
what
IS
> > > > > > the answer?
>
> > > > > Don't ask me, ask your sword.
>
> > > > What's my "sword"?
>
> > > That's the question, innit?
>
> > Can you answer it? Can any of us answer it?
>
> I can put my paws on a weapon that works.
>
> You have some weapons at your disposal. You can read, for instance. You
> can write, for instance.
>
> No other weapon will do you any good until you master those two things
> first.
>

If I didn't, I could not carry on this read and written discussion.
What I don't know is
where to apply them to. One can have a sharp tool, but if one knows
not where it
should be applied. In such cases, the tool is of no use.

> --
> Neolibertarian
>
> "[The American People] know that we don't have deficits
> because people are taxed too little; we have deficits
> because big government spends too much."
>                   ---Ronald Reagan


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