Tuesday, 25 January 2011

A New Direction

First point.

I quite like people. Surprisingly enough I quite like you. So, I'd like to get to know you better.

I have decided that I am not interested in instant rebuttals, instant opinions. If anyone is reading this I am not interested in your instant reaction, I am interested in what you thought,  after a while. And I'll certainly guest other opinions.

I want to practice what I am preaching, so I will leave this site alone for a week or so and let you get your teeth into the - deliberately controversial  - points I make below.

So, take a chill pill, walk your dog, go on a holiday, circumnavigate the globe. Then, when you are quite sure you have something to say, say it.

I am of the AGW tendancy. Do you have the faintest idea how hard it is to refute the denialists? The point is that I had to put an immense amount of effort and time  into arguing against just one of their ideas. By which time: marshalling arguements, finding facts, etc, the entire agenda has moved on. If you are interested I learned that the glacier of which they spoke was the furthest from the sea of any glacier. If  I could remember, or be bothered where it actually was - central China I think - I would be a Mastermind contender.

(If anyone is really interested, and we slow down a lot, I can probably find that original thread on Liberal Conspiracy. But it is probably not the point.)

I have a proposition for you, dear reader. The point of this is perhaps wider than you might originally assume, though maybe you do:


I can understand the fear that big government will simply retrench and make it more difficult for this sort of material to come out.

But we are many and they are few.

It seems to me that state level diplomats already know what the other side thinks or can do. If they don’t, then what the hell are they for?

So, for example, if the political class in Israel knows what the political class in Palestine thinks, and vice versa, then they are on a level playing field.

It is perhaps useful for the two parties to these negotiations to be able to say things like, ‘I don’t know what they’ll say on the streets of Haifa / Gaza’, as added leverage to their position.
But, by keeping their populations in the dark, they are playing a propoganda game with their own constituents.

It strikes me as treating folk like cannon fodder, to be easily manipulated when the time comes.

I think that is a huge democratic deficit. One that must be addressed. It is a levers of power game that mandarins play on the poor bloody infantry, who are you and I.

Open negotiations and leaks, yes leaks, would benefit everyone.

Wish I hadn’t used the I/P conflict as an example as it seems to me it is probably a global issue.
The democratic or even pre-democratic compact between rulers and ruled is in dire need of a serious re-examination. Else we will all kill each other.

From a slow meal point of view is that interesting or is it just daft?

 Well, at least walk the dog.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Slow arguement - the antithesis of blogs

I have recently joined a disussion here:


Interesting, not just for the way arguements tend to fractionalise and split away from what the original author thought they were talking about. A comparison of muslims and sharks ends up discussing stuff like scientific Linnaean taxonomy,  via contested stuff about the Israel / Palestine conflict and, frankly, whether there can be a genuine and neutral 'history of the world'.

I find it quite interesting, in the sense that you may wish to stay away from both sharks and muslims, which was the original precept, on the grounds of nearly certain death.

Or not.

And then you think.

Maybe not a lot. Maybe you say to yourself that someone, whose monicker is Iron Mike - how sad is that - is completely right? Do you think that sharks and muslims are a synonym?

Or perhaps Iron Mike is right? Perhaps his happy comparison between some sharks and some people is just the way of the world?

I am not convinced that alienating muslims from christians from jews is ever done in the best of faiths. And I say that as an atheist.

But that is not all of it, is it?

There is a huge cultural capital being spent on being right, or offended about stuff, isn't there?

It is enough to make people fight. It is this demonisation of 'the other' that seems to be something that activates some of us to violent solutions, and depending where we are in a society, we throw rocks, we sniper, we cavalry charge, we drop agent orange, or we nuke folk.

It seems to me that 'being offended' is a convenient way for jews and christians and muslims to see street violence and repressive states and all the rest of it as normal.

I think this idea that fighting each other, seen as usual, is actually pretty stupid. It is up to the Abrahamic Religions - the whole lot of you - to tell the rest of us why you are relevant to the 21st C.

For, it seems to me that none of you are relevant or useful.