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Ron Paul, The Conspiracy '08

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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited December 2007
    jacobkosh wrote: »
    Of course it's freedom: the freedom to maximise their personal potential. It's not an evil linguistic trick, dude: the word really does encompass concepts beyond what does/does not get the police to kick your door down.

    Funny, the dictionary seems to side with me.
    1: the quality or state of being free: as a: the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or actionb: liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another : independence c: the quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous <freedom from care> d: ease, facility <spoke the language with freedom> e: the quality of being frank, open, or outspoken <answered with freedom> f: improper familiarity g: boldness of conception or execution h: unrestricted use <gave him the freedom of their home>2 a: a political right b: franchise, privilege

    Arguing from dictionaries? Are you kidding me?

    "Well, it says here that beauty is the attribute of conveying aesthetic pleasure. Sorry Plato! I win this round!"

    Shinto on
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    JamesKeenanJamesKeenan Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    I'm not so sure about the people changing it though. The very soul of the American government was the idea that it's the people that give it the power. The very power the government itself wields was originally, collectively placed into the hands of the entire entity of "government" itself to protect and structure the nation. That's all well and true. But how many people know about that? Who can knowledgeably say with a straight face that even half the population knows its rights. Maybe I've been duped, and the danger of an almost entirely politically ignorant country is as real as the crime scare.

    It could be that corrupt polls, Youtube and a number of other factors have warped my vision of the country into something where well over half of the people who do vote are over 65, and over half of them would vote for Romney because he looks the most charming.

    JamesKeenan on
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    Professor PhobosProfessor Phobos Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    Raeth wrote: »
    Fucking hell, do we need to explain the different between positive and negative freedoms again?

    This post also clearly shows that you have no idea what the differences are between socialist, communist, and authoritarian policies. Not everyone in this country is born equal, buddy, and some still don't even have the luxury of equity before the law - that's why we need a nice helping of socialism to help keep/make things better.

    This, of course, is one of the fundamental differences between libertarianism and socialism. A libertarian believes government is the cause of most of our problems. A socialist thinks it is the solution.

    I think the real fundamental difference between posters in this thread is between those who believe in simplistic catch phrases expressing myopic, monocausal axiomatic beliefs in the absence of empirical evidence, and those who don't.

    Professor Phobos on
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    Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    Are we really having a serious argument with one of these dudes again?

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
    it was the smallest on the list but
    Pluto was a planet and I'll never forget
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    Fallout2manFallout2man Vault Dweller Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    I feel like, of the wealth of literature on political philosophy, law, and social progress, this kid hasn't read anything but John Locke, Ben Franklin, George Orwell and Ayn Rand.

    Once again, and with feeling:

    1) The government isn't taking the form that "the people" don't want. If it is/does, then "the people" will vote for people to change the government to be the way they DO want it to be. It's that simple. Stop confusing your own views on government expansion and corruption with everyone elses.

    Can that still be said though if a large enough percentage of our population, large enough to possibly enact change, does not vote because they feel their vote would never count?
    2) No one, except perhaps your mother, signed a social contract for you. You continue to sign your social contract every day you live in this country and vote in its system of government. The social contract is not something that came into existence before you were born, but is continuous. This isn't original fucking sin, and you aren't living here or under this contract against your will.

    I'm referring specifically to the constitution and the foundation of government, the basis of our nation's power. The people had to vote for it to come into law and take affect. I concede that you're right it's also a continuous agreement that as we live in and participate we are saying we agree to our government, but currently we still swear oaths of office to things like upholding the constitution, saying we were based around it and all that. Why all this constitution talk or even things like the supreme court declaring laws unconstitutional if we're suddenly saying we don't need the constitution at all? Is it or isn't it the basis of government or national power in America?
    3) The Constitution created a government, whose purpose was to create and administer laws. As with ANY government, this one has evolved beyond the ideas of the Constitution, while keeping its basic ideas at heart. The spirit of the Constitution does not necessary equal the spirit of the law, nor does it need to.

    So do we need it at all? You seem to be espousing the idea that it was just a figurative guideline for how our nation in theory "should" work. Basically that it's a strong suggestion. Do you think we actually need hard power checks at all? So far we go back and forth but it seems we both keep disagreeing on the fundamental point on whether government should or shouldn't have a hard basis of power and regulations as to what those powers are, who gets what, when and what they can do with them.
    4) Many, many people can work extraordinarily hard and diligently, yet never progress beyond earning a minimum wage. They are not exceptional. Just because you were born on third base doesn't mean you hit a triple.

    I know I'm being a huge dick for saying this. However, I really don't think that's an issue government necessarily needs to deal with. (note: not talking about minimum wage.) If a person gets stuck in a dead end job in the end it's their choices that often have lead and/or kept them there. I can barely manage to pay my rent lately and my choices are starting to look like internet or food, but I don't think the government should miraculously poof out of existence and hand me a job. I got myself here and I should be the one to get myself out of it. If someone else can't do that, then I don't see why I should have to pay for it.


    Anyway, drowsyness is overcoming me so time to sleep for a bit.

    Fallout2man on
    On Ignorance:
    Kana wrote:
    If the best you can come up with against someone who's patently ignorant is to yell back at him, "Yeah? Well there's BOOKS, and they say you're WRONG!"

    Then honestly you're not coming out of this looking great either.
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited December 2007
    I'm not so sure about the people changing it though. The very soul of the American government was the idea that it's the people that give it the power. The very power the government itself wields was originally, collectively placed into the hands of the entire entity of "government" itself to protect and structure the nation. That's all well and true. But how many people know about that? Who can knowledgeably say with a straight face that even half the population knows its rights. Maybe I've been duped, and the danger of an almost entirely politically ignorant country is as real as the crime scare.

    It could be that corrupt polls, Youtube and a number of other factors have warped my vision of the country into something where well over half of the people who do vote are over 65, and over half of them would vote for Romney because he looks the most charming.

    It's getting better all the time.

    You might not believe that, because the word doesn't get out all that well. Let me show you something.

    Percentage of the total population which cast a vote:

    1792 - .05%

    1860 - 15%

    1920 - 25%

    1940 - 37%

    1980 - 38%

    2004 - 41%

    Shinto on
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    JamesKeenanJamesKeenan Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    Shinto. Words cannot express my gratitude for your contributions.

    Instead, accept this.

    :^:

    JamesKeenan on
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    ChopperDaveChopperDave Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    So do we need it at all? You seem to be espousing the idea that it was just a figurative guideline for how our nation in theory "should" work. Basically that it's a strong suggestion. Do you think we actually need hard power checks at all? So far we go back and forth but it seems we both keep disagreeing on the fundamental point on whether government should or shouldn't have a hard basis of power and regulations as to what those powers are, who gets what, when and what they can do with them.

    We keep going back and forth because you aren't reading what I am writing.

    The Constitution forms the base upon which are government and law is built. It enumerates the principle behind our theory of government, and establishes a set of hard checks and balances that - and please read carefully now - with some evolution in our state practice and interpretation, continues to work today. Hell, the very notion of judicial review - practically as old as the Constitution itself - was a loose interpretation of a Constitutional prerogative which (surprise!) helped to balance the Judicial Branch better than it had been before.

    Our interpretation of the Constitution changes because the TIMES change. It says nothing about nuclear arms development, or globalized trade networks, or consolidated disaster relief, or anything of that sort. But it doesn't need to. The government and the law systems, which have developed and evolved with the Constitution at their base, are able to adapt to these challenges without need to change the Constitution itself. What's wonderful about the Constitution is how adaptable it is to modern developments without the need to change it, as long as you keep in mind that it's the values, and not the words themselves, that are to be interpreted.

    By the way, you are right when you say that, technically, we don't need the Constitution anymore - because we don't. Great Britain has gotten by just fine with nothing but the Magna Carta (which hardly counts), and Israel (regardless of what you think of its policy or form) has a quite stable democracy with no constitution at all. But the Constitution is still nice to have, because it puts onto paper what would otherwise only exist in the realms of custom, government practice, and opinio juris, and as such gives us a nice reference point for our own values.

    But thinking that the Constitution = law? That's stupid. It's just our law's base and influence, nothing more, nothing less.
    I know I'm being a huge dick for saying this. However, I really don't think that's an issue government necessarily needs to deal with. (note: not talking about minimum wage.) If a person gets stuck in a dead end job in the end it's their choices that often have lead and/or kept them there. I can barely manage to pay my rent lately and my choices are starting to look like internet or food, but I don't think the government should miraculously poof out of existence and hand me a job. I got myself here and I should be the one to get myself out of it. If someone else can't do that, then I don't see why I should have to pay for it.

    You are being a huge dick. You're also terrifically wrong. You seem to have no idea how easy it is to get stuck in a dead end job without it being a result of your own choices. But then, that's a direct result of your relying singly on your own anecdotal experience and ignoring the vast literature, past and present, on social injustice. So I can only blame you for being narrow-minded.

    ChopperDave on
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    ChopperDaveChopperDave Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    Seriously, guys, am I explaining this well? Because I feel like I must not be writing this clearly if this debate has gone on this long.

    I'd think that it would be self-evident that our government and law derives its power not from the Constitution, but from the people, their customs and beliefs, and state precedent and practice. It seems like its just common sense to me - remove the common support for the law, and the Constitution becomes just another piece of paper. What's so hard to understand about that?

    ChopperDave on
    3DS code: 3007-8077-4055
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    JamesKeenanJamesKeenan Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    I thought we consulted the Oracle.

    :\

    JamesKeenan on
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    electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    Seriously, guys, am I explaining this well? Because I feel like I must not be writing this clearly if this debate has gone on this long.

    I'd think that it would be self-evident that our government and law derives its power not from the Constitution, but from the people, their customs and beliefs, and state precedent and practice. It seems like its just common sense to me - remove the common support for the law, and the Constitution becomes just another piece of paper. What's so hard to understand about that?
    Probably the fact that most of us are in fact terrified by "the people" having anything to do with government, by and large. Then we remember that vocal minorities are just a problem in relation to campaign funding.

    electricitylikesme on
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    ChopperDaveChopperDave Registered User regular
    edited December 2007
    Yeah. The people are pretty scary :lol:

    But really, the basis of any form of government or common law is 1) individual practice ("the people," the rules of conduct they practice, and how they shape the law simply by following their own codes of morality) 2) precedent and custom (the government/laws we're used to following and have fallen into through historical development), and opinio juris (~the Constitution and/or spirit of the law; what we believe to be right, even if we don't necessarily practice it).

    You need all three to be present and in harmony for government and law to function. Sometimes having more of two can still lead to the creation of new law/government: it is argued, for example, that with liberal opinio juris and strong popular support, new law can be created in the absence of state precedent, and indeed, creates state precedent out of thin air. Or, with enough popular support and "customary law," you can create opinio iuris (i.e., amendments).

    But you can't create/modify law/government with just popular support, or just the spirit of the law, or just precedent/custom. This is Law Theory 101 stuff here.

    Paulites, however, think you can; go back to the Constitution, they say, rely solely on strict opinio juris, ignore 200 years of developed precedent/practice AND popular practice. Law. Doesn't. Work. That. Way.

    ChopperDave on
    3DS code: 3007-8077-4055
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    ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited December 2007
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    Elki on
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