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cock-eyed octopus

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Posts posted by cock-eyed octopus

  1. 10 minutes ago, Bruce Banner said:

    Let's sort out today first. 

    If after the 2nd referendum you want another, and can muster enough support, we can have a 3rd. Although if the result of the 2nd is to leave I doubt you'll be wanting another one, or will you?

    I want us to enact the result of the first one, as we were told would happen. Then we can have another one if you like.

     

  2. 26 minutes ago, jonb2 said:

    1. Why? It was held on a false premise - check. It was not for the good of the country - but for the ruling party - check. It was very badly organised - check. Propaganda was rampant - check.

    2. The remain 'lies' are delayed. Show me any of the lies made by remain that will not come to fruition.

    3. I don't hate the 'rich'. I hate the self-serving rentier lying bast ards who make themselves rich at the cost of society. I think people like George Soros are saints compared to traitors like Ratcliffe. OK?

    4. The bankers and financiers who got away with crime in 2008. Supremely evil IMO. There are many others. Enough said. You, no doubt, think they have got there by their own merit and love them to death. Don't forget to tug your forelock to your betters.

    5. Don't know what you are talking about. But for someone, like you, who thinks the USA has a better system than Europe, I don't expect to understand your POV entirely.

    1) The EU is based on a false premise. In practice it's mostly for the benefit of Germany & France & sod the rest

    And if you haven't noticed African & other corrupt states simply lose/ignore votes & threaten physical violence. You're comparing the referendum to that? Out of your mind.

    2) Recession. Economic Armageddon. Mass unemployment. Just by VOTING leave.And you are not God, you do not KNOW what will happen economically or socially whatever you might THINK.

    3) If you think Soros is any kind of saint then you are mad. He was quite happy to make money out of bankrupting the country. 

    4) Love them to death?? I think they should've gone to prison!

    5) I don't think the USA has a better democratic system than (most) European countries. But the EU's 'democracy' is utter sh!te.

     

     

     

  3. 28 minutes ago, jonb2 said:

    Seriously moi? A bit touched?

    Thanks for the insult.

    Prove any of what I said wrong. See my list of what should have been in the Leave manifesto and tell me if I have got my facts wrong.

    "Agreed. The referendum was invalid.

    It was worse than those held by despots in a poor African country. There was no rule of law applied for the need of truth. No consequences for the lies, just like the bankers got away with it in 2008. A perfect and historic example of faux democracy in the face of a mirage made from false claims."

    ____________________________________________________________________________

    If you believe that then you are so far removed from reality as to be clinically insane.

    And I repeat, there were at least as many lies perpetrated by the remain campaign. They both made promises about the future that nobody could fulfill or be certain about. It proceeded on the same basis as any election campaign - empty promises & half-truths,

    Your lunatic hatred of 'The Rich' as if they're some sort of alien vampire race has distorted your reason. As I pointed out, you're richer than 99% of the rest of humanity, so where does that leave you?

    I suspect it's a quasi-religious thing; why is existence so poor for most people? I don't want it, it's nothing to do with me, it's so obviously wrong that it must be down to a cabal of supremely evil people.

    Well I don't think so. I think it's down to many incredibly complex factors inherent in all humanity, the worst of which, & the most intractable, is the fact that we are material beings.

     

     

  4. 50 minutes ago, jonb2 said:

    Agreed. The referendum was invalid.

    It was worse than those held by despots in a poor African country. There was no rule of law applied for the need of truth. No consequences for the lies, just like the bankers got away with it in 2008. A perfect and historic example of faux democracy in the face of a mirage made from false claims.

    Pity our politicians are such cowards. There is no good future for this country while they are so contemptuously negligent.

    I'm beginning to think you're a bit touched. Your sense of proportion is so skewed as to be borderline insane.

     

  5. 2 minutes ago, thecrashingisles said:

    The US constitution said that black slaves counted for three-fifths of a person for the purpose of determining the population of a state.  The entire history of the US is tied up with the question of race.

    Absolutely. But the issue of race has divided America throughout its history (I believe they fought a war over it). But they don't, & cannot, have the idea of an American 'race' in the same way as the French (who just quietly stuff black immigrants in the banlieues).

    These are necessarily generalisations & do not apply to individuals. But I believe they reflect a national outlook, a belief in a country's place in the world.

    France & the USA both believe themselves to be eminently superior, but I believe for completely different reasons.

     

  6. 15 minutes ago, hotblack42 said:

    Its a nightmare trying to discuss geopolitics or indeed any 'big picture' topic with my family & friends.  All they ever do is think about how the issue has, & might in future, affect them & their immediate circle.  They just get annoyed if I try to make them think objectively & dispassionately in the context of wider society.  Some literally can't do this (my bad really I should be more understanding) others, frustratingly, can but won't.

    I think I'll join a debating society.

    Perhaps that's because what they get told about wider society conflicts with their direct experience of members of that society.

    This can work both ways. I knew a man who was a self-confessed egomaniac & an unreconstructed racist & homophobe. However, when he became chronically ill he came into contact with many foreign medical professionals who he acknowledged to be highly intelligent (he was willfully ignorant but not stupid). It was amusing to see the internal conflict thus engendered.

    He also greatly admired Stephen Fry.  "I can't understand why he's never married" he once mused while watching him on the telly, sat alongside myself & my daughter.

    Cue hysterical collapse of parent & child ...

     

     

  7. 4 hours ago, thecrashingisles said:

    The US was founded as a revolution against English institutions, and against the principle of parliamentary sovereignty.  The view you have of it is sentimental and distorted.

    They revolted against being ruled (& taxed) by a remote power in whose administration they couldn't have any meaningful say (sound familiar?). Their institutions were based on the same democratic principles as ours, only more thoroughgoing without the class element.

     

  8. 4 hours ago, thecrashingisles said:

    How extensive is your experience of America?  Picking up US cultural artefacts second hand while living in the UK doesn't count.

    I agree that there is nothing like direct personal experience of a place. However there is so much documentary evidence about America (actually mostly critical) I think it's possible to get a fair idea of the USA. Americans I've met suggest my conclusions are correct.

     

  9. 7 hours ago, smash said:

    I've read quite a bit of American literature; Realism, as in Bukowski and his mentor John Fante. Steinbeck..How about American Naturalism; Algren and Theo Dreiser. You read that? Jack London is my hero though.

    Steinbeck yes, the others no. Bellow, Updike, Heller, Roth, Proulx, Flannery O'Connor, others I can't recall the name of. I tried Moby Dick bur couldn't get into it. Likewise The Call Of The Wild.

     

     

  10. 2 hours ago, Kosmin said:

    Are you talking about the political leadership, or people in general?

    I find it hard to believe the French are less critical of themselves than the Americans. Criticism isn't really tolerated in America. It's un-American. It's a like a religion to them: Pledge allegiance to the flag, stand for the national anthem at sporting events. We have a special system that makes us better than other countries: America is a shining city upon a hill. Even left-leaning people have to make clear they accept the American Dream (if you work hard, you'll do well; if you don't, it's your fault. We don't want to punish (tax) people who do well, etc.). Never apologise for atrocities (Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Korea, Vietnam, numerous in Latin America...).

    Americans are almost certainly the most insular country in the West (as recently as 1994 only 10% of the country had a passport, though it's now up to 40%). This does seem to contribute to a lack a curiosity about the rest of the world and hence an ignorance and feelings of superiority.

    Do you think the French are self-critical about their own culture in the same way that we & the Americans are? Ireally don't think so.

    America is a vast country, & reflects a huge diversity of cultures within it, from redneck to Cajun to hillbilly to country & western to New Yorker to Californian to Seattle ... the flag, a belief in the USA providing the best opportunities in the world unites them BUT there is a lot of self criticism going on amongst many of those subcultures. Just read some American literature if you don't believe me.

    That just isn't the case in France. There is never a question of the innate superiority of France ( I quoted Sebastian Faulks', a Francophile, anecdote about the French a few pages back).

    You think Americans haven't criticised, say, the Vietnam war? Have you seen any of the films?

    This film about the Algerian War of Independence was banned for 5 years after its release

    https://www.1843magazine.com/culture/the-daily/the-battle-of-algiers-a-film-for-our-time

    I'm not saying there is no self reflection anywhere in French society. Just that there is a level of cynicism inherent in it which, while frequently preaching high philosophical principles, accepts dubious actions it finds necessary to maintain its own self interest with a Gallic shrug.

     

  11. 5 hours ago, smash said:

    I see lots of people (on social media) saying similar things about a UK/US/Anglosphere and affinity, I find it plain odd if you will forgive me. The US seems like a distant place and far removed, more foreign, than anywhere I've been to in Europe.

    I really don't understand this. My experience of Europe is very limited (although I've worked with a lot of different nationalities) but the French have a completely different outlook - & an uncritical view of their own country seems to be a constant. This is an accusation you could hardly level at he UK or USA (which is both a strength & a weakness we have).

    One of the things that struck me about French society was the respect for intellect & age as opposed to our worship of youth & energy. As much as I find this respect admirable it leads to cultural ossification; how many decent French bands are there? Compared to the huge variety & invention in our music? America has produced an explosion of amazingly  inventive music in the last 50 years - as have we - but I can't think of anything even vaguely equivalent on the Continent. The same is largely true of film, art & literature, although less pronounced.

    There's buckets of stuff I hate about America, but a lot of it is a byproduct of optimism & openness, qualities I find laudable. I think this is tied in with a tendency to wide-eyed naivety; they still believe that a John Wayne style sock on the jaw will make the baddies run away with their tails between their legs, never to return. A lot of Americans don't seem to set much store by thinking overmuch about stuff.

     

     

  12. 1 hour ago, jonb2 said:

    Fair enough.

    For me, I think Britain, of all the country groupings around the world, we have most in common with Europe. A binding. The UK DNA is made up of Gallics, Vikings, Romans, Celts, Saxons, Normans etc. Our history and our literature is mainly an adventure of Europe. We have had wars and love affairs across the whole continent. Our greatest cooperation stories have been between the nations of Europe.

    They are on our doorstep. Eastern Europe is a saga of horrible histories and at last they have a chance of real liberation, and to shine. The EU bureaucracy is a quagmire. Juncker is an unfortunate emblem of this. And there are many other things, like not having a listening post. But if I had a choice to do business with any grouping, the EU would be far in front. China is a disaster for foreign trade and we will just be America's bitch. The Commonwealth is nowhere near substantial enough to compensate for the trade lost by Brexit. This little island made its way in the world by exploring, sea-faring and trading. It was outward looking. The modern equivalent of which are things like the current deal we have with the EU.

    IMO Brexit is an anachronism. An illusion of beating the Armada and the V sign at Agincourt. It's regressive, inward looking and delusional. But the worst of it is that it's all for nothing.

    Not me.

    Despite my recent Franco-German ancestry I've never felt European. I have more affinity with the USA. After all, most of their institutions & pragmatic philosophical outlook derive from English ones.

    Their democracy more accurately reflects the population, warts & all. Which is what people are - a mixture of the good, the bad & the ugly. Trying to force them into some sort of ideological Utopia, no matter how well intentioned, will not work.

     

  13. 30 minutes ago, jonb2 said:

    Why?

    I wanted closer ties with the Commonwealth. I thought the CM was a bunch of countries trying to flog each other the same stuff (crudely speaking).

    I thought this could be a win-win situation. To start with we would have a market for finished goods & poorer countries for their raw materials, but eventually the poorer countries would have gained their own technology & thus we would have had access to a better educated & more sophisticated market as a result - we need to stay one step ahead generally, it's the only way we can survive. The richer countries are I think a better fit to trade with us as it stands. And we have closer cultural ties, which helps a lot.

    Obviously this could have been pure exploitation but I believe one of this country's main characteristics is its humanity. Personally the government I voted for would have been heavily influenced by its attitude to such trade (although, as ever, such decisions are complex).

    I'm afraid I've never felt European in any meaningful way. Too many cultural & philosophical conflicts for me. But I'm quite happy for the French to be French & the Germans to be German etc. - in fact I like it. 

    As with many of the topics on here it's too complicated to sum up in a few paragraphs & I haven't got the time to do it justice.

     

  14. 35 minutes ago, GrizzlyDave said:

    That, in itself, is not a recipe for inefficiency.  

    It's the scale that's he problem. It's very difficult, if not impossible, for large organisations (say 1,000 employees up) not to become progressively less efficient.

    The feedback mechanisms disappear. They get lost in the competing structures that form within the group - individual ambitions get in the way of the overall goals & strategy of the company.

    You have to arrive at some sort of hierarchy which keeps dissatisfaction to a minimum,. It ain't easy. And given the size of the NHS it would be a near miracle to get a reasonable level of efficiency (i.e. beat outcome /patient for given resources.

    Nationalisation just adds another level of people disconnected from the front line. It's a bit like the EU really.

     

  15. 10 minutes ago, Dave Beans said:

    Hmmm...Tell that to the likes of JRM who has this ideological theory of fwee twade (with an undercurrent of disaster capitalism - I think he knows what he's doing)...something has pretty much disappeared over the last 40 years..

    He may well have some such ideology. I'm sure people voted leave for all sorts of reasons, as did those who voted remain.

     

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