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We Can Work It Out - Politics & Philosophy
25 October 2020
3.05pm
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Dark Overlord
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QuarryMan said
Anarcho-capitalism (or even right libertarianism, to be honest) isn’t really a real ideology, though, it’s mostly just a meme that 15 year olds get into when they first discover politics. The actual policy record of neoliberalism is essentially the promotion of these economic principles wherever possible, both internally within the western nations propagating them (e.g. Thatcher, Reagan, Clinton, Blair, Macron and so on) and second world/third world nations in a neo-colonial exploitative relationship, often enforced by anti-democratic measures or even violence. If anarcho-capitalism was a serious school of thought beyond the internet and Ayn Rand novels, then the difference between the two would be that neoliberals are smart enough to realise that they need a strong (and often authoritarian) state in order to prevent popular revolt against their policies.

I have to disagree. Don’t get me wrong, Anarcho-Capitalism (as well as other far-right libertarian ideologies like Classical Liberalism and Paleoconservatism) has it’s flaws but it’s definitely a real ideology with many adult supporters such as Adam Kokesh and Spike Cohen.

In fact, i prefer far-right libertarianism over neoliberalism because far-right libertarians are more likely to stay consistent with their beliefs (although some are better than others at this).

Sure, far-right libertarians are against Medicare for all, basic environmental regulations, and a progressive tax policy but they’re also against corporate bailouts, offensive wars, and the Patriot Act. But neoliberals want the worst of both worlds, having us funnel billions of taxdollars into offensive wars and corporate bailouts while people suffer due to unpaid medical bills and massive corporations slowly destroy our ecosystem.

Of course, it’s worth pointing out that center-right libertarians like Joe Rogan and Elon Musk do support common sense regulations and believe that taxation should be used to fund public goods like police, military, and healthcare while still supporting capitalism.

As for your last point, you’re not wrong but that can work both ways, as that can also be used to silence unwanted discourse when the government enacts an unpopular policy.

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26 October 2020
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I understand that anarcho-capitalism is a real theory, I just believe that it is a nonsensical one that no serious person would support. Any detailed understanding of the historical and material origins of both private property and the state demonstrates that the former cannot exist without the latter. 

“While I will admit to a certain cynicism, the fact is that I’m a naysayer and hatchet man in the fight against violence. I pride myself in taking a punch and I’ll gladly take another - because I choose to live my life in the company of Ghandi and King. My concerns are global. I reject absolutely revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love. I love you, Sheriff Truman.”

 

26 October 2020
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An argument can be made both ways on what form of anarchy is true anarchy. On one hand, anarcho-capitalism allows corporations to oppress people but on the other, anarcho-communism bans the buying and selling of goods.

Personally, i’d argue that anarcho-capitalism is the true form of anarchy because anarcho-communism curtails economic freedom but i’d 100% agree that regulation is beneficial to the individual (although i’m still in favor of capitalism).

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27 October 2020
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This is exactly why I say that anarcho-capitalism is a nonsensical ideology. How do you buy or sell goods without a currency in common to make the transactions actually mean something? Capitalism functions today because we have states to issue universal currency, to protect private property, to provide the infrastructure needed for production, and to regulate the market so that its effects are not too destructive (though of course it is not always successful at this). If you got rid of the state then either the entire system would crumble or the successful enough corporations would turn into mini-states more dictatorial than possibly any government we’ve yet seen in human history. 

Also, anarcho-communism, if it were to exist, wouldn’t “ban” buying and selling goods. The idea is that after the state and capitalism are both abolished, then the people re-organise society along the lines of voluntary, decentralised communes. If two individuals in such an environment decided they wanted to exchange goods then nobody would stop them, the point is that there would be no need to buy and sell goods since everybody’s needs would be provided for by the community. I’m not an anarchist, but this is how I understand it. 

“While I will admit to a certain cynicism, the fact is that I’m a naysayer and hatchet man in the fight against violence. I pride myself in taking a punch and I’ll gladly take another - because I choose to live my life in the company of Ghandi and King. My concerns are global. I reject absolutely revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love. I love you, Sheriff Truman.”

 

28 December 2020
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Has the pandemic shifted your political views?

For me, i’ve seen a massive shift towards the right since the start of the pandemic, going from a Soc Dem to a Ron Paul-esque independent. This is mostly because America took the worst of both worlds path, implementing half measure lockdowns and business closures while being very hesitant to ban travel and help those in need. Because of this, many small businesses are going to tank and many people will become homeless while people die of COVID anyways because the lockdowns weren’t sufficient enough. Had we copied a country like Australia, we’d be in a much better position because there wouldn’t be an ensuing economic depression AND we’d have the upside of days where NO ONE dies of COVID, meaning that we would be able to ease restrictions much faster.

Anyways, one of the biggest issues i shifted on is immigration. Before the pandemic, i used to support open borders, as it represents the natural way of life. However, i now realize that this whole thing could’ve been stopped if we banned travel rom infected countries, something you can’t do without borders.

With that being said, i still think there needs to be a pathway to citizenship for those who want to enter the country legally and i oppose capping how many legal immigrants we allow in. However, we should make sure that these immigrants can prove that they don’t have a criminal record and that they won’t become dependent on the government and we shouldn’t be afraid to deport those who overstay their VISAs or otherwise come here illegally, as illegal immigration is a crime and they’re willing to break the law to enter the country, they’re more likely (not guaranteed, just more likely) to commit crime while they’re here.

To make this explicitly clear, i’m only talking about illegal immigration. To be tough on legal immigration is one of the stupidest things you can possibly do, as those who are willing to go though the proper channels and come here legally would be vetted and not to mention, legal immigration is what makes America so special and great.

Another issue i shifted on is states rights. Before the pandemic, i despised the idea of states rights and thought that everything should be decided at the federal level. However, i now realize that letting individual states decide for themselves on non-important issues isn’t just what the 10th Amendment explicitly states should happen, but also gives people more variety between picking what state to live in.

A perfect example of an issue that is best left to the states is minimum wage laws. The lower the minimum wage is, the easier it is to get a job but the higher the minimum wage is, the easier it is to make a steady living. So letting Alabama have a $2 minimum wage while California has a $20 minimum wage means that you move based on whether you prioritize getting a job or making a steady living.

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28 December 2020
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@Dark Overlord said
Anyways, one of the biggest issues i shifted on is immigration. Before the pandemic, i used to support open borders, as it represents the natural way of life. However, i now realize that this whole thing could’ve been stopped if we banned travel from infected countries, something you can’t do without borders.

But the spread of the virus had nothing to do with immigration. Firstly, the virus was probably already established in many countries before the earliest travel bans. Secondly, when you look at something like Trump’s early travel ban on China, it only applied to Chinese nationals, not to those of other nationalities who had been in China recently, nor American citizens returning from China.

The problem with the spread of the virus wasn’t down to immigration but, rather, the simplicity of travel in the pre-covid world. To have any chance of keeping the virus you would have needed to shut your borders to everyone who was overseas, including your own citizens.

It’s the same with the faster spreading variant discovered in the UK shortly before Christmas. Discovered here because the UK is doing a lot of DNA sequencing on the virus. Lots of countries have closed their borders to people coming from the UK, but many of those countries are finding the variant is already there now that they’re looking for it.

Another issue i shifted on is states rights. Before the pandemic, i despised the idea of states rights and thought that everything should be decided at the federal level. However, i now realize that letting individual states decide for themselves on non-important issues isn’t just what the 10th Amendment explicitly states should happen, but also gives people more variety between picking what state to live in.

Anthony Fauci says that one of the biggest hinderances to fighting the virus in the US has been states rights. He says while it works for the non-important issues, it isn’t equipped to handle something like a pandemic because the federal authorities cannot order a national lockdown, they can only advise states as to what should be being done, and it is up to states to decide whether they’ll follow the advice. Advice many states have ignored.

There is a reason why the number of those infected and dead in the US, and a big part of that is down to states not going into full lockdown or making mask use mandatory, going against the medical advice they were being given because it was an election year and they worried their voters wouldn’t like a lockdown or being told to wear a mask.

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28 December 2020
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Ron Nasty said

The problem with the spread of the virus wasn’t down to immigration but, rather, the simplicity of travel in the pre-covid world. To have any chance of keeping the virus you would have needed to shut your borders to everyone who was overseas, including your own citizens.

That’s exactly what we should’ve done, completely isolated ourselves from the second we heard about the disease until the pandemic was over. This way, we could’ve prevented the disease from entering the United States and had an almost normal 2020. Of course, if someone was outside of the US at the time, we’d allow them to return to the United States but we’d carefully monitor them for 2 weeks in an thoroughly cleaned isolated chamber* and staff would only communicate with them while wearing hazmat suits to ensure COVID doesn’t leave the chamber if the person has it.

*This would be nothing like solitary confinement, as they’d be able to communicate with people via Zoom and they’d have a TV and internet access to keep them entertained for those 2 weeks.

Anthony Fauci says that one of the biggest hinderances to fighting the virus in the US has been states rights. He says while it works for the non-important issues, it isn’t equipped to handle something like a pandemic because the federal authorities cannot order a national lockdown, they can only advise states as to what should be being done, and it is up to states to decide whether they’ll follow the advice. Advice many states have ignored.

There is a reason why the number of those infected and dead in the US, and a big part of that is down to states not going into full lockdown or making mask use mandatory, going against the medical advice they were being given because it was an election year and they worried their voters wouldn’t like a lockdown or being told to wear a mask.

Good point. However, it’s worth pointing out that issuing lockdowns have actually improved the popularity of many leaders like Boris Johnson. Also, issuing a lockdown isn’t the best option unless you have a government that’s willing to pay your wages for the time being, as well as having free healthcare for your citizens. That’s not America, so even if we issued a federal lockdown, it might save lives but we’d tank the economy in the process, which could lead to a serious mental health crisis, on top of an economic depression.

As for mask mandates, the problem is that the government initially told people NOT to wear them. Had Fauci advised people to wear masks from day one, people would be far more willing to wear them.

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29 December 2020
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Dark Overlord said

For me, i’ve seen a massive shift towards the right since the start of the pandemic, going from a Soc Dem to a Ron Paul-esque independent. This is mostly because America took the worst of both worlds path, implementing half measure lockdowns and business closures while being very hesitant to ban travel and help those in need. Because of this, many small businesses are going to tank and many people will become homeless while people die of COVID anyways because the lockdowns weren’t sufficient enough. Had we copied a country like Australia, we’d be in a much better position because there wouldn’t be an ensuing economic depression AND we’d have the upside of days where NO ONE dies of COVID, meaning that we would be able to ease restrictions much faster.

  

I am tearing my hair out trying to comprehend how any of the events of this year could’ve shifted you to the right. The US government did two key things wrong – they waited far too long to do any sort of lockdowns, and then they allowed things to reopen before it was safe to do so. The reason they took this path is clear – they didn’t want the economy to be damaged too much, and put people in danger as a result. This is a classic example of right wing governments prioritising the profits of their corporate masters over the welfare of the people. If this had been handled the libertarian way, with a policy of no lockdowns in order to keep the economy going, then it would’ve been even worse as the virus would’ve been beyond rampant and the resulting confusion and fear would’ve resulted in a recession anyways. 

Ironically, taking this approach has given the US the worst of both worlds as it’s dragged out the crisis far longer than it needed to be, and in doing so will most likely end up damaging the economy far more than a one or two month proper lockdown from early March onwards ever would’ve done. Many countries who were willing to take stricter measures have now been able to almost completely rid themselves of the virus and return to normal life, allowing their economies to recover much faster. You mention Australia – their lockdown was indeed less strict than most initially, but they still enforced social distancing and closed non essential businesses from around the 20th March onwards, and when things started to get worse later in the year after loosening restrictions they imposed stricter lockdowns, such as in Victoria where they had a strict lockdown for almost four months. So if you’re wanting to use Australia as an example of your ‘Ron Paul independent’ method then it simply doesn’t fit the facts. 

TL;DR the reason the USA has done such a terrible job handling corona compared to most other countries AND is experiencing a huge recession is precisely because the government was so unwilling to do what was necessary to tackle the virus, and because they fumbled their response so badly they’ve both made the inevitable recession much worse than it had to be and sacrificed hundreds of thousands of lives completely unnecessarily. 

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29 December 2020
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very glad the NDP are a party here, as they reflect my views pretty much to a T

too bad the majority of people are afraid of em for whatever reason

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29 December 2020
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Apologies for the double post, but since DO asked, I thought I’d say something also about how this year has changed my politics. It’s taught me three lessons in particular:

Firstly, it’s become very clear that what our society relies on most is the incredible sacrifice of all the key workers who kept us going during the pandemic, from the delivery drivers to the nurses to the supermarket staff to the food producers and so on. In reality, there weren’t so much ‘lockdowns’ as there were periods in which middle class people got to stay inside while working class people brought us things. Maybe after this all over – or even right now – we should show our gratitude, not by clapping for them every Thursday, like we’ve done in the UK, but perhaps by not constantly slashing public services, demeaning workers for wanting to strike in order to make a decent wage, or undermining the working conditions and pay of the people we rely on more than anyone else. 

Secondly, in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, many countries around the world have subjected their populations to years of brutal austerity in the name of ‘balancing the books’ in order to pay off national debt caused by the greed of the US stock market in the first place. Here in the UK we’ve had to endure stagnant growth, underfunded schools and overcrowded hospitals for an entire decade, only for every bit of sacrifice made by the public to be swept aside as soon as the next crisis hit and the government was forced to start borrowing again. I’m just hoping that in future we realise that austerity is a failed policy based on a flawed understanding of how economic growth happens, and that servicing national debt at the expense of the wellbeing of your citizens is a completely futile endeavour when you’ll be set back on square one every time there’s a recession. 

Thirdly, and on something of a nicer note, my daily walks in March and April reminded me just how important nature is to human happiness and wellbeing, and inspired me to start enjoying the outdoors much more since then. In future, I think society needs to recognise this fundamental need and do everything we can to make sure that everybody has the ability to enjoy this wonderful planet. If we can do that, then hopefully more people will start to recognise just how important it is that we protect it.

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29 December 2020
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Dark Overlord said

As for mask mandates, the problem is that the government initially told people NOT to wear them. Had Fauci advised people to wear masks from day one, people would be far more willing to wear them.

As Dr Fauci has explained many times, a non recommendation what’s the logical decision at a time when the u.s. case count was low and masks were being reserved for healthcare professionals. But public health information changes day by day during a pandemic, as the situation changes, to the point where new recommendations are given. In other words, the March 8th non mask recommendation was later reversed as the spread got worse.

But regardless, I see no evidence that these loony self-described libertarian/patriots/holy warriors/whatever would have been more likely to follow Public Health guidelines and strap a mask on their own face, against the demands of their all-important *Personal*Freedom* , even if a mandatory mask order had been made on March 8th or 15th or any other date, really. Maybe they be even ANGRIER and do MORE armed protesting at state legislatures if mask regulations were handed down while the USA still only had a handful of deaths…

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29 December 2020
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QuarryMan said
I am tearing my hair out trying to comprehend how any of the events of this year could’ve shifted you to the right. The US government did two key things wrong – they waited far too long to do any sort of lockdowns, and then they allowed things to reopen before it was safe to do so. The reason they took this path is clear – they didn’t want the economy to be damaged too much, and put people in danger as a result. This is a classic example of right wing governments prioritising the profits of their corporate masters over the welfare of the people. If this had been handled the libertarian way, with a policy of no lockdowns in order to keep the economy going, then it would’ve been even worse as the virus would’ve been beyond rampant and the resulting confusion and fear would’ve resulted in a recession anyways.

To be fair, a lot of it also came down to how easy it was for the left to support Biden, the guy who read segregationist Strom Thurmond’s eulogy, wrote the Crime Bill, supported the Patriot Act and our never ending wars in the Middle East, supported the bill that prevents people from easily declaring bankruptcy on their student loans, and said that he’d veto Medicare for all if it hit his front desk.

Of course, some of these criticisms are coming from the left so saying that i have shifted massively to the right isn’t the best thing to say. However, it’s worth pointing out that the American left (Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, etc.) is different from the actual left (Jeremy Corbyn, Justin Trudeau, Noam Chomsky, etc.) and while i don’t despise the actual left (although i definitely have my disagreements with them), the American left angers me because they practice their corruption under the facade of cultural progressivism, whereas Republicans will just be open with you about their beliefs.

But to get to your main point, there were 2 options that we could’ve done without causing an economic depression. Either we could’ve had minimal shutdowns (ie only shutting down large events) with a mask mandate from day 1, which is similar to what Japan and Sweden did, or we could’ve done a total lockdown AND made sure to financially compensate people to ensure they don’t go homeless.

While i strongly prefer the 1st scenario, as the 2nd one sacrifices both social and economic freedom, i’d take the 2nd one (so long as the financial compensation was included) over what we did in the US because countries who implemented a full lockdown have had lower death rates AND a better economy than the US.

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29 December 2020
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lmao Trudeau is NOT “the actual left”

he’s pretty much just a Democrat

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Dark Overlord said

To be fair, a lot of it also came down to how easy it was for the left to support Biden, the guy who read segregationist Strom Thurmond’s eulogy, wrote the Crime Bill, supported the Patriot Act and our never ending wars in the Middle East, supported the bill that prevents people from easily declaring bankruptcy on their student loans, and said that he’d veto Medicare for all if it hit his front desk.

And you think that the Republicans, who you’ve apparently shifted towards supporting, aren’t in favour of these things? I share every single criticism of Biden and his politics, but the whole point is that these are criticisms from the left. The left criticises Biden because he’s pro war, the Republicans criticise Biden because he isn’t pro war enough. The left criticises Biden because of his record with the ’94 Crime Bill, the Republicans criticise Biden because they think the Crime Bill didn’t go far enough. If you oppose these things, then supporting libertarians like Ron Paul (whose son, Rand, is currently passionately arguing against the $2000 cheques, by the way) is not the solution. 

And for the record, it was not easy for the left to support Biden in the slightest. The arguments over whether to vote for him in the name of harm reduction have been going ever since Super Tuesday, and it’s easily one of the most controversial topics amongst left leaning people in the West. It would be extremely dishonest to characterise it as the left just obediently falling in line behind him. 

Of course, some of these criticisms are coming from the left so saying that i have shifted massively to the right isn’t the best thing to say. However, it’s worth pointing out that the American left (Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, etc.) is different from the actual left (Jeremy Corbyn, Justin Trudeau, Noam Chomsky, etc.) and while i don’t despise the actual left (although i definitely have my disagreements with them), the American left angers me because they practice their corruption under the facade of cultural progressivism, whereas Republicans will just be open with you about their beliefs.

I feel exactly the same way about the establishment Democrats, but just because the Republicans are more honest about their beliefs does not mean their beliefs are better. You said you were a social democrat previously, but have shifted to align with Ron Paul more. Now, Ron Paul had some positions that I agree with, such as being opposed to the PATRIOT Act, the War on Drugs and the War on Terror. But these are criticisms he shares with social democrats and the left. Where he differs from the left is that he aligns with the GOP on economics – he is a self professed fan of Austrian/Chicago School economists such as Hayek and Friedman, in other words, the godfathers of the horrendously destructive neoliberal consensus we’ve had for the past forty years, and he’s advocated failed policies such as trickle down economics, austerity, and outright climate change denialism. You can support his anti-authoritarian positions without his far right economic lunacy, you know. 

But to get to your main point, there were 2 options that we could’ve done without causing an economic depression. Either we could’ve had minimal shutdowns (ie only shutting down large events) with a mask mandate from day 1, which is similar to what Japan and Sweden did, or we could’ve done a total lockdown AND made sure to financially compensate people to ensure they don’t go homeless. While i strongly prefer the 1st scenario, as the 2nd one sacrifices both social and economic freedom, i’d take the 2nd one (so long as the financial compensation was included) over what we did in the US because countries who implemented a full lockdown have had lower death rates AND a better economy than the US.

…. this is exactly what I’m saying, and that’s what most people on the left have been saying the whole time. The libertarians are the ones who have been protesting lockdowns and trying to get the economy reopened fully before it’s safe. 

“While I will admit to a certain cynicism, the fact is that I’m a naysayer and hatchet man in the fight against violence. I pride myself in taking a punch and I’ll gladly take another - because I choose to live my life in the company of Ghandi and King. My concerns are global. I reject absolutely revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love. I love you, Sheriff Truman.”

 

30 December 2020
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QuarryMan said

Dark Overlord said
To be fair, a lot of it also came down to how easy it was for the left to support Biden, the guy who read segregationist Strom Thurmond’s eulogy, wrote the Crime Bill, supported the Patriot Act and our never ending wars in the Middle East, supported the bill that prevents people from easily declaring bankruptcy on their student loans, and said that he’d veto Medicare for all if it hit his front desk.

And you think that the Republicans, who you’ve apparently shifted towards supporting, aren’t in favour of these things? I share every single criticism of Biden and his politics, but the whole point is that these are criticisms from the left.

To be fair, there are criticisms i have of Biden from the right as well. For example, i support school choice, oppose having a federal minimum wage, support a federal abortion ban, oppose banning assault rifles (although i support having more comprehensive background checks to make sure guns aren’t going in the wrong hands), and think that things like gay marriage are best left up to the states as per the 10th amendment.

The left criticises Biden because he’s pro war, the Republicans criticise Biden because he isn’t pro war enough. The left criticises Biden because of his record with the ’94 Crime Bill, the Republicans criticise Biden because they think the Crime Bill didn’t go far enough. If you oppose these things, then supporting libertarians like Ron Paul (whose son, Rand, is currently passionately arguing against the $2000 cheques, by the way) is not the solution.

While i strongly disagree with Rand’s decision, him and his father are the best we’ve got IMO and i wouldn’t let a few mistakes get in the way of me supporting him.

And for the record, it was not easy for the left to support Biden in the slightest. The arguments over whether to vote for him in the name of harm reduction have been going ever since Super Tuesday, and it’s easily one of the most controversial topics amongst left leaning people in the West. It would be extremely dishonest to characterise it as the left just obediently falling in line behind him.

To be fair, that was a generalization, as there were lefties who were hesitant to support him and even lefties like Kyle Kulinski and Krystall Ball who refused to vote for him but there were also a lot of lefties like Andrew Yang, David Pakman, and Bernie himself who immediately supported him upon becoming the presumptive nominee.

I feel exactly the same way about the establishment Democrats, but just because the Republicans are more honest about their beliefs does not mean their beliefs are better. You said you were a social democrat previously, but have shifted to align with Ron Paul more. Now, Ron Paul had some positions that I agree with, such as being opposed to the PATRIOT Act, the War on Drugs and the War on Terror. But these are criticisms he shares with social democrats and the left. Where he differs from the left is that he aligns with the GOP on economics – he is a self professed fan of Austrian/Chicago School economists such as Hayek and Friedman, in other words, the godfathers of the horrendously destructive neoliberal consensus we’ve had for the past forty years, and he’s advocated failed policies such as trickle down economics, austerity, and outright climate change denialism. You can support his anti-authoritarian positions without his far right economic lunacy, you know.

First of all, climate change denialism has nothing to do with neoliberalism and many neoliberals like Ben Shapiro have admitted that climate change is real and man made, it’s just that spending trillions of dollars on the Green New Deal isn’t the best option IMO and i’d rather us spend more time on things like common sense environmental regulations to stop multibillion dollar corporations from polluting (which i admit is a left-leaning position), as well as converting to nuclear power.

But to get to your main point, Ron Paul is a paleoconservative (AKA paleolibertarian), not a neoliberal, and sure, he’s against things like Medicare and Social Security but he’s consistent with his beliefs and is therefore also opposed to things that neoliberals support like corporate bailouts and increasing the military budget.

…. this is exactly what I’m saying, and that’s what most people on the left have been saying the whole time. The libertarians are the ones who have been protesting lockdowns and trying to get the economy reopened fully before it’s safe.

Yes and no. While it’s true that they’ve prevented us from doing anything serious, they were also against the half measures.

Von Bontee said

Dark Overlord said

As for mask mandates, the problem is that the government initially told people NOT to wear them. Had Fauci advised people to wear masks from day one, people would be far more willing to wear them.

As Dr Fauci has explained many times, a non recommendation what’s the logical decision at a time when the u.s. case count was low and masks were being reserved for healthcare professionals. But public health information changes day by day during a pandemic, as the situation changes, to the point where new recommendations are given. In other words, the March 8th non mask recommendation was later reversed as the spread got worse.

But regardless, I see no evidence that these loony self-described libertarian/patriots/holy warriors/whatever would have been more likely to follow Public Health guidelines and strap a mask on their own face, against the demands of their all-important *Personal*Freedom* , even if a mandatory mask order had been made on March 8th or 15th or any other date, really. Maybe they be even ANGRIER and do MORE armed protesting at state legislatures if mask regulations were handed down while the USA still only had a handful of deaths…

To be fair, i’m glad Fauci changed his stance and told people to wear masks but still, i think he should’ve supported a mask mandate from day one, as it would’ve saved lives, and i also think Trump’s in the wrong for not having a stockpile of masks for healthcare workers in a scenario like this.

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Dark Overlord said

To be fair, there are criticisms i have of Biden from the right as well. For example, i support school choice, oppose having a federal minimum wage, support a federal abortion ban, oppose banning assault rifles (although i support having more comprehensive background checks to make sure guns aren’t going in the wrong hands), and think that things like gay marriage are best left up to the states as per the 10th amendment.

A federal abortion ban and allowing states to restrict the right of gay people to get married are just about two of the least libertarian things I can possibly think of. It honestly sounds like you’re just a conservative.

While i strongly disagree with Rand’s decision, him and his father are the best we’ve got IMO and i wouldn’t let a few mistakes get in the way of me supporting him.

Libertarians having a complete disregard for the welfare of ordinary people isn’t a bug, it’s a feature. Their central argument, the idea that ‘we just want the government to stop interfering in people’s private affairs’ sounds nice until you realise what the practical implications of it are, and what happens when it is implemented. 

But to get to your main point, Ron Paul is a paleoconservative (AKA paleolibertarian), not a neoliberal, and sure, he’s against things like Medicare and Social Security but he’s consistent with his beliefs and is therefore also opposed to things that neoliberals support like corporate bailouts and increasing the military budget.

Again, the mere fact that someone is honest or consistent with their beliefs does not make their beliefs good. The policies that Paul and everyone else in his party supports will cause just as much human suffering and environmental destruction regardless of whether they’re honest about it or not. 

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QuarryMan said

Dark Overlord said
To be fair, there are criticisms i have of Biden from the right as well. For example, i support school choice, oppose having a federal minimum wage, support a federal abortion ban, oppose banning assault rifles (although i support having more comprehensive background checks to make sure guns aren’t going in the wrong hands), and think that things like gay marriage are best left up to the states as per the 10th amendment.

A federal abortion ban and allowing states to restrict the right of gay people to get married are just about two of the least libertarian things I can possibly think of. It honestly sounds like you’re just a conservative.

Maybe i’m what some would call socially conservative/fiscally liberal but i don’t like to think of myself as conservative as i support things that your average conservative would despise like Universal healthcare, immigration reform, easy access to contraceptives, progressive taxation, and some environmental regulations. Also, abortion rights isn’t an authoritarian/libertarian issue, as someone has to suffer regardless of what happens.

To be honest, i’d probably describe myself as a political misfit or an independent.

But to get to your main point, Ron Paul is a paleoconservative (AKA paleolibertarian), not a neoliberal, and sure, he’s against things like Medicare and Social Security but he’s consistent with his beliefs and is therefore also opposed to things that neoliberals support like corporate bailouts and increasing the military budget.

Again, the mere fact that someone is honest or consistent with their beliefs does not make their beliefs good. The policies that Paul and everyone else in his party supports will cause just as much human suffering and environmental destruction regardless of whether they’re honest about it or not.

Yes but the difference is that we know what the Republicans believe while establishment Democrats will lie about their beliefs in order to get more votes.

For example, as much as i hate Biden’s stance on healthcare, i like that he’s being honest so we know what we’re getting instead of someone like Barack Obama who ran on implementing Universal healthcare but ended up giving us a modified version of Mitt Romney’s health care plan or Trump who ran on replacing said plan with something better but ended up replacing it with something even worse.

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Dark Overlord said

Also, abortion rights isn’t an authoritarian/libertarian issue, as someone has to suffer regardless of what happens.

I guess it’s easy when talking about abortion to get caught in the weeds of overlapping freedoms (though I am personally solidly pro-choice) but if you step outside of the philosophical arguments and look at it practically, a federal abortion ban is undeniably a strongly authoritarian measure, particularly given the strict measures it would take to enforce, the restrictions it would place on doctors’ ability to care for their patients as they think is best and the freedom of the mother to choose, and even more so from a libertarian standpoint since for them it seems that the bar for classifying something as ‘authoritarian’ is it being done federally rather than on the state level. That’s not to mention the fact that abortion bans are ineffective and generally only end up making the problem worse. 

Yes but the difference is that we know what the Republicans believe while establishment Democrats will lie about their beliefs in order to get more votes.

And? While obviously being honest is important for a politician, it is not more important than policy. If a very honest genocidal dictator was running for office against a dishonest but otherwise politically sound candidate, it wouldn’t make the dictator the better candidate. Not to mention that it’s highly disputable that Republicans are honest about what they do; we know from Lee Atwater and John Ehrlichman that Republican strategists have a long history of using euphemistic talking points and policies that were really dogwhistles for racial animosity, to name but two examples. 

For example, as much as i hate Biden’s stance on healthcare, i like that he’s being honest so we know what we’re getting instead of someone like Barack Obama who ran on implementing Universal healthcare but ended up giving us a modified version of Mitt Romney’s health care plan or Trump who ran on replacing said plan with something better but ended up replacing it with something even worse.

Well, for starters you’ve contradicted your own point twice there by naming a Democrat who was honest and a Republican who wasn’t. And while it pains me to defend Obama, who himself admitted that his policies were similar to those of a ‘moderate Republican’, the reason why his proposals were so watered down was because of the intense opposition from Republicans after they took the House in 2010, who consistently voted down anything even slightly more progressive than what Americans actually got with Obamacare. While people are right to be sceptical of Obama’s progressive credentials, especially after he’s spent his 2020, in regards to healthcare the blame for the shortcomings of his plan lay on other shoulders than just his. 
  

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QuarryMan said

Dark Overlord said
Also, abortion rights isn’t an authoritarian/libertarian issue, as someone has to suffer regardless of what happens.

I guess it’s easy when talking about abortion to get caught in the weeds of overlapping freedoms (though I am personally solidly pro-choice) but if you step outside of the philosophical arguments and look at it practically, a federal abortion ban is undeniably a strongly authoritarian measure, particularly given the strict measures it would take to enforce, the restrictions it would place on doctors’ ability to care for their patients as they think is best and the freedom of the mother to choose, and even more so from a libertarian standpoint since for them it seems that the bar for classifying something as ‘authoritarian’ is it being done federally rather than on the state level. That’s not to mention the fact that abortion bans are ineffective and generally only end up making the problem worse.

Good point, the libertarian option would probably be to keep the government out of it, which means defunding Planned Parenthood but also allowing a woman to get an abortion. However, i’m fine with my stance being an authoritarian one since i believe that it’s sometimes necessary for the federal government to step in.

As for your point about DIY abortions making the problem worse, it depends (medically induced abortions tend to be safe for the mother while other methods tend not to be) and i think we should do everything we possibly can to make sure women don’t want to have an abortion whether it be comprehensive sex ed, free contraceptives, free adoption services, Universal healthcare, or anything else that could help sway women in the right direction but i view abortion as comparable to hiring a hitman so i don’t think the dangers of having a DIY abortion outweigh the crime.

Yes but the difference is that we know what the Republicans believe while establishment Democrats will lie about their beliefs in order to get more votes.

And? While obviously being honest is important for a politician, it is not more important than policy. If a very honest genocidal dictator was running for office against a dishonest but otherwise politically sound candidate, it wouldn’t make the dictator the better candidate. Not to mention that it’s highly disputable that Republicans are honest about what they do; we know from Lee Atwater and John Ehrlichman that Republican strategists have a long history of using euphemistic talking points and policies that were really dogwhistles for racial animosity, to name but two examples.

I’ll concede regarding Ron Paul. While he has done some great things regarding social issues* and foreign policy, his economic stances are, so it’s probably best to not put myself in the same ballpark as him.

*While Ron Paul describes himself as a libertarian, he differs from them in the same that he’s moderate on immigration and believes that social issues should be left to the states except for abortion, which he thinks needs to be banned federally.

As for the southern strategy, it seems a bit far fetched considering that:

Barry Goldwater (who ran against the Civil Rights Act) lost in a 44 state landslide to LBJ in 1964

The southern racists mostly fled to 3rd party candidate George Wallace in 1968

Richard Nixon won a 49 state landslide in 1972

Jimmy Carter won the south in 1976 and was competitive in the south in 1980, even in spite of Reagan’s 44 state landslide

Ronald Reagan won a 49 state landslide in 1984

Bill Clinton was able to win parts of the south (while being competitive in others) in 1992 and 1996

Al Gore was within 5 points of winning Missouri and Tennessee in 2000

In fact, it wasn’t until 2004 that the south became safe for the GOP.

For example, as much as i hate Biden’s stance on healthcare, i like that he’s being honest so we know what we’re getting instead of someone like Barack Obama who ran on implementing Universal healthcare but ended up giving us a modified version of Mitt Romney’s health care plan or Trump who ran on replacing said plan with something better but ended up replacing it with something even worse.

Well, for starters you’ve contradicted your own point twice there by naming a Democrat who was honest and a Republican who wasn’t. And while it pains me to defend Obama, who himself admitted that his policies were similar to those of a ‘moderate Republican’, the reason why his proposals were so watered down was because of the intense opposition from Republicans after they took the House in 2010, who consistently voted down anything even slightly more progressive than what Americans actually got with Obamacare. While people are right to be sceptical of Obama’s progressive credentials, especially after he’s spent his 2020, in regards to healthcare the blame for the shortcomings of his plan lay on other shoulders than just his.

Good point. However, Obamacare was passed on March 23, 2010, 10 months before Republicans took the house so Obama certainly could’ve gotten the public option through the 59-41* house he had at the time, even with Joe Lieberman’s filibuster, as you need 60 senators to support a cloture, meaning that only 1 Republican would have to join the 59 Democrats in ending the filibuster.

*58 Democrats and 40 Republicans plus 2 independents (Bernie Sanders, who would’ve sided with the Democrats, and Joe Lieberman, who would’ve sided with the Republicans)

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Dark Overlord said

Good point, the libertarian option would probably be to keep the government out of it, which means defunding Planned Parenthood but also allowing a woman to get an abortion. However, i’m fine with my stance being an authoritarian one since i believe that it’s sometimes necessary for the federal government to step in.

As for your point about DIY abortions making the problem worse, it depends (medically induced abortions tend to be safe for the mother while other methods tend not to be) and i think we should do everything we possibly can to make sure women don’t want to have an abortion whether it be comprehensive sex ed, free contraceptives, free adoption services, Universal healthcare, or anything else that could help sway women in the right direction but i view abortion as comparable to hiring a hitman so i don’t think the dangers of having a DIY abortion outweigh the crime.

So the logic I’m going with here is 

– Banning abortions doesn’t reduce rates of abortion, but it does make the abortions that do happen far less safe as there’s no way of regulating them.
– Implementing measures such as better adoption services, comprehensive sex education, trying to make young couples more financially stable so they feel like they’re in a good position to start a family etc does reduce rates of abortion.

Therefore, the best strategy for lowering rates of abortion is keeping abortion legal but also taking progressive measures to try and reduce the rates of usage. This to me is a win-win situation, since women continue to have the freedom to choose (and actually have more freedom since if they’re financially stable they’ll feel more confident about taking the option of having the child) and abortion rates go down. 

On the other hand, introducing a federal abortion ban would restrict the personal freedom of women and lead to a situation where thousands are leaving the US (or any country) to get an abortion elsewhere, necessitate the government having to even arrest doctors for performing the procedures they deem most ethical, and not even achieve the stated goal of stopping abortions. Unless you are an ethical deontologist who simply does not belief abortion should happen at all, I really can’t see any reason why the option of a federal abortion ban achieves your goals in the slightest. 

As for the southern strategy, it seems a bit far fetched…

On the Southern Strategy, I’ll go through it year by year but I have a few general points

– Race is not the only issue at play in a given election. Every election has its own particular context and broader issues that change over time. 

– In most countries, there tend to be swings every few years between the major political parties. The USA, nor its south, are immune to this, and just because there was a swing to the Democrats one year doesn’t mean that Republican appeals to race in campaigning weren’t a motivating factor for the people who did vote Republican in the south in large numbers. 

– An electoral strategy being adopted by the politicians and their campaign teams does not automatically mean voters pick up on it. The Southern Strategy would still have been a real thing even if voters hadn’t responded to it at all.

1964: You have to remember that JFK had been assassinated the previous year, and that the Cuban missile crisis was still fresh in people’s minds, so LBJ was already riding a wave of crisis patriotism in terms of support, something they capitalised on by a successful campaign depicting Goldwater as a dangerous extremist, most famously in the ‘Daisy’ advert which implied that a Goldwater presidency would lead to nuclear annihilation. I don’t think it’s too much a stretch of the imagination that the threat of nuclear war and the rush of patriotism after the death of a popular president would overshadow race as an issue in the minds of voters, even racist ones. That said, it’s notable that the states Goldwater did win were Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina. 

1968: The fact that Wallace won the same states Goldwater did does not negate the fact that Nixon undoubtedly pursued racist dogwhistles in his campaign, focusing on rhetoric about “states’ rights” and “law and order”, two terms which have been used as dogwhistles time and time again. Nixon tried the Southern Strategy; Wallace beat him at his own game by being far more explicit about his opposition to racial integration. This was the 60s, remember, when outright racial extremism was still much more publicly acceptable, whereas later on when explicit racism wasn’t acceptable in polite society it became more politically expedient to cloak it in euphemisms. 

1972: Yes, Nixon won a 49 state landslide. Including the south. His winning the north too didn’t change that. 

1976: This election is admittedly a bit of an outlier, since its voting pattern doesn’t really fit any of the traditional models, but an important alternate factor to consider are that Ford was extremely unpopular at the time due to his pardoning of Nixon, which was interpreted as a betrayal by the Republican base. In any case, Carter has been the only Democrat to win a majority of southern states since 1964, so he’s clearly the exception.

1984: See 1972.

1992, 1996, & 2000: Do any of these examples prove anything? I doubt proponents of the Southern Strategy as a historical theory would argue that it meant Republicans win every southern state by a landslide every election, rather that the overall shift of the south as Democrat heartlands to Republican heartlands over time can largely be attributed 

Good point. However, Obamacare was passed on March 23, 2010, 10 months before Republicans took the house so Obama certainly could’ve gotten the public option through the 59-41* house he had at the time, even with Joe Lieberman’s filibuster, as you need 60 senators to support a cloture, meaning that only 1 Republican would have to join the 59 Democrats in ending the filibuster.

You are right about that, I had been misremembering that Obamacare was passed in 2011 for some reason. However, I think my point still stands that the situation was altogether much more complicated than him simply lying about how progressive his proposals were. For one thing, in the 2008 campaign it wasn’t like he ran on a pledge of Medicare for all or anything like that, rather his rhetoric was mostly focused on insuring the roughly 45 million uninsured Americans at the time, reducing premium costs and curbing the power of pharmaceutical companies. This isn’t the same thing as running on the idea of universal, government provided healthcare, but rather a case of his working towards everyone being insured, whether it be privately or through government programmes.

Secondly, the writing and passage of the legislation was certainly affected by the balance of power in Congress at the time in numerous ways. Democrat policymakers abandoned the idea of single payer healthcare after concluding that they didn’t have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate for such a progressive measure, and instead drew inspiration for the bill from bipartisan ideas; the basic outline of the bill was supported by Republicans such as Bob Dole and Howard Baker. Furthermore, Joe Lieberman was able to negotiate the concession that the bill would not include a public option. As well as this, due to the fact that the Senate’s proposal for the bill was very different to the one passed by the House, it went back to the House for passage, by which time a special election in the Senate had given the Republicans the ability to sustain filibusters, and so the House passed the Senate’s version with the hope it could be amended in future. 

I think these various factors meet the burden of proof for the idea that the content of the ACA was dictated by factors much more significant than just Obama being less progressive than he’d promised on the campaign trail. 

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