Diary

Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

Lou.

Posted to Diary on Wed Nov 21, 2007 at 11:45:46 AM EST. RSS.

Saudi Arabia sucks and maybe extension, Islam...that is all.

I was going to make a headline about a young woman being raped twice...but that's kind of cliche...now, raped twice and Flogged, that's another matter.

Here's the short version.  A 19 year old Saudi woman rode in a car with a man who was not a relative, the two were abducted and taken to a place where her friend was beaten and she was gang raped.  Then, she was charged with "Mingling" (!?) and sentenced to 90 LASHES...when she appealed, her punishment was upped to 6 months in prison and 200 LASHES!  Why?  Because she appealed and also spoke to the media...oh yeah...her lawyer was disbarred as well.

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1

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

tomc.

Thu Nov 22, 2007 at 09:38:00 AM EST

none

So, what's your point?

2

meh..don't care

wetkarma.

Thu Nov 22, 2007 at 11:17:08 AM EST

none

See down this road of outrage lies the idea of "we should do something".  And in this case America is writing checks with its mouth that the checkbook won't cash.

Is there anyone here on TnT whose opinion of Saudi Arabia has changed in the SLIGHTEST as a result of knowing about this case? To me this is like another china sweatshop story...its freakin Saudi Arabia of COURSE they treat women like shit.

Just remember...its not like the men are holding all the women hostage -- the women support these cultural values just as much as the men.

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

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Re: meh..don't care

ms sue.

Thu Nov 22, 2007 at 01:06:18 PM EST

none

And here I was right with you up to "Just remember...its not like the men are holding all the women hostage -- the women support these cultural values just as much as the men."

First of all, not all the women support these cultural values. Second of all, I retain a healthy skepticism whenever I encounter someone who defends their own figurative (if not sometimes literal) imprisonment and subjugation.

5

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Re: meh..don't care

wetkarma.

Thu Nov 22, 2007 at 09:22:12 PM EST

4.00 (interesting)

Sue,
Are there women in Saudi Arabia who would like more freedom? Undoubtedly. Are they in the majority? I'm skeptical. Assume that 50% of the Saudi population is women -- how is it do you think that the country has stability for a cultural system which 'opresses' the women? The answer is and must be that the women participate in the 'oppression' as well.

Look at countries liberal countries like the UK and realize that even here conservative muslim women don't talk to men outside their families and choose to wear the full on veil gear. The women participate in creating Saudi Arabia's culture for what it is just as much as the men.

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

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Re: meh..don't care

ms sue.

Fri Nov 23, 2007 at 05:08:37 AM EST

none

Are there women in Saudi Arabia who would like more freedom? Undoubtedly. Are they in the majority? I'm skeptical.

I said nothing about a percentage: I think it would be rather difficult to determine their desire for freedom because (sorry to quote myself) "Second of all, I retain a healthy skepticism whenever I encounter someone who defends their own figurative (if not sometimes literal) imprisonment and subjugation."

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Re: meh..don't care

Lou.

Fri Nov 23, 2007 at 06:32:32 AM EST

none

The answer is and must be that the women participate in the 'oppression' as well.

If they do participate, it's on a cultural level only, I think.  Seeing as Saudi women have zilch political power, that is.  This doesn't leave them much room to maneuver.  Throw a healthy dash of fear on top of that and I can see how woman "participate" in their own oppression...much the way that antebellum slaves participated in their own captivity.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

8

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Re: meh..don't care

wetkarma.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 12:04:19 AM EST

5.00

political power is built on top of cultural power - not the other way around. If you agree that Saudi society is relatively stable, then you should at least be willing to examine the possibility that the women are aiding and abetting in that stability.

If you take (for comparison) the american women's lib movement starting from the earliest right to vote proponents, the loudest voices of opposition came from other women. The whole idea that women would rise up and throw off their burqas if only they were 'free' to do so got exposed for the myth it was in Afghanistan and I see no reason to believe the same wouldn't be true for Saudi Arabia.

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

13

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Re: meh..don't care

ms sue.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 11:45:12 AM EST

5.00 (astute)

political power is built on top of cultural power - not the other way around.

I don't think it's that simple. One is not stacked on top of the other. They're intertwined. I still say that what you call "aiding and abetting" is difficult to separate from ingrained mores and indoctrination.

Unless there's something inherent in women that makes them prefer suppression to relative freedom, I would suggest that the voices of opposition to which you refer might be those of women who, for a variety of possible reasons, lacked the ability to imagine and to foresee any different status for themselves other than dependency. And what they could imagine and foresee undoubtedly frightened the hell out of them. So how else to react but with a resounding affirmation of the status quo.  

But other than to blame the people who I believe do not have the opportunity to be anything other than complicit, I don't see the reason you followed "Its freakin Saudi Arabia of COURSE they treat women like shit" with "Just remember...its not like the men are holding all the women hostage -- the women support these cultural values just as much as the men."  

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Re: meh..don't care

gerrymander.

Mon Nov 26, 2007 at 10:45:23 AM EST

4.00

Unless there's something inherent in women that makes them prefer suppression to relative freedom

Not just women, but people in general. What we need to remember is two things. First, even in groups with little power, that power is not spread about equally. Women living in Saudi Arabia are in general powerless, but some women have power over others -- and some of that power is expressly granted for buying into the the current structure. Greater freedom for all women means social upheaval, which translates into a possible loss of status for some of the matriarchs -- and the more power was gained through compliance, the greater the possibility.

Second, despite having some little power, those women on top of their tiny hierarchy have also suffered greatly for years. If all that goes away, they will have suffered for nothing -- and less than nothing, if they end up downtrodden again due to their ties to the previous system. We can see this aspect in play in plenty of other social orders we're familiar with, from hospital residencies to indie rock.

The women in Saudi Arabia don't have to like suppression, they just have to like power and fear change more.

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Re: meh..don't care

ms sue.

Mon Nov 26, 2007 at 12:17:24 PM EST

none

Am I incorrect in suggesting that what you describe, particularly in your second paragraph, is essentially cognitive dissonance? Or am I misusing that phrase?

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Re: meh..don't care

gerrymander.

Mon Nov 26, 2007 at 01:25:10 PM EST

none

As I understand it, you're both using the term correctly and rightly identifying it as part of what I'm describing, ms_sue. Even if Saudi women haven't ever seen examples for Western cultural norms, they surely must be aware of the difference they see every day in treatment between the sexes.

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Re: meh..don't care

thefadd.

Mon Nov 26, 2007 at 02:17:54 PM EST

none

political power is built on top of cultural power

I realize I'm disingenuously taking this out of context to the extent that in a closed, peaceful social system, cultural values become reflected in political will...but in an absolute sense this the most--possibly only truly--naive thing I've read from you.

It is easy to buy small plaster models of what you think life is like.

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Re: meh..don't care

wetkarma.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 11:00:46 AM EST

5.00 (interesting)


in an absolute sense this the most--possibly only truly--naive thing I've read from you.

Ah thefadd, you only think its naive because you've forgotten the cynical core which is my nature. Its easy to get people to oppress themselves - look at african nations crying out for Sharia law, look at the middle ages with hundreds of years of uninterrupted feudal society.

Which do you prefer to believe - that government throughout history had so much to stamp out all minor pockets of dissent or that pockets of dissent tend to be minor and rarely inspire the populace at large to revolt?

Just as a thought -- the word "revolution" is itself relatively modern in origin. Now THAT's thought control.

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

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Re: meh..don't care

tomc.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 11:33:20 AM EST

4.00 (funny, funny)

ARTHUR:  I am your king!
  WOMAN:  Well, I didn't vote for you.
  ARTHUR:  You don't vote for kings.
  WOMAN:  Well, 'ow did you become king then?
  ARTHUR:  The Lady of the Lake,
      [angels sing]
      her arm clad in the purest shimmering samite, held aloft Excalibur
      from the bosom of the water signifying by Divine Providence that I,
      Arthur, was to carry Excalibur.
      [singing stops]
      That is why I am your king!
  DENNIS:  Listen -- strange women lying in ponds distributing swords
      is no basis for a system of government.  Supreme executive power
      derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical
      aquatic ceremony.
  ARTHUR:  Be quiet!
  DENNIS:  Well you can't expect to wield supreme executive power
      just 'cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!
  ARTHUR:  Shut up!
  DENNIS:  I mean, if I went around sayin' I was an empereror just
      because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me they'd
      put me away!
  ARTHUR:  Shut up!  Will you shut up!
  DENNIS:  Ah, now we see the violence inherent in the system.
  ARTHUR:  Shut up!
  DENNIS:  Oh!  Come and see the violence inherent in the system!
      HELP! HELP! I'm being repressed!
  ARTHUR:  Bloody peasant!
  DENNIS:  Oh, what a give away.  Did you here that, did you here that,
      eh?  That's what I'm on about -- did you see him repressing me,
      you saw it didn't you?

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Re: meh..don't care

thefadd.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 03:40:12 PM EST

none

A google of "etymology of revolution" led to this bit of provocative weirdness.

It is easy to buy small plaster models of what you think life is like.

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Re: meh..don't care

wetkarma.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 12:18:43 AM EST

none

Very odd what you´ll find on the tubes eh? In case your search stopped there, here is a better etymology.

revolution  
1390, originally of celestial bodies, from O.Fr. revolution, from L.L. revolutionem (nom. revolutio) "a revolving," from L. revolutus, pp. of revolvere "turn, roll back" (see revolve). General sense of "instance of great change in affairs" is recorded from c.1450. Political meaning first recorded 1600, derived from French, and was especially applied to the expulsion of the Stuart dynasty under James II in 1688 and transfer of sovereignty to William and Mary. Revolutionary as a noun is first attested 1850, from the adjective. Revolutionize "to change a thing completely and fundamentally" is first recorded 1799.

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

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Re: meh..don't care

thefadd.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 08:41:03 AM EST

none

His etymologies were probably the least interesting thing on that page. One question, though, if you're getting people to oppress themselves aren't they being oppressed. I agree with your sentiment entirely that plenty of saudi women are complicit in their society's oppression of women. I'd argue, though, that those complicit women aren't being oppressed. The trade offs they make, they make of their own choice and also afford them certain additional social freedoms that don't subject them to the oppression of their female peers. i.e., most well-to-do women who support the system probably have a much lower likelihood of being dragged from a car and gang raped because of the security the system affords them. To that end, you're also blatantly leaving economic factors out of the equation, but then so was ms sue.

It is easy to buy small plaster models of what you think life is like.

4

What? (no point, really)

Lou.

Thu Nov 22, 2007 at 01:45:35 PM EST

none

Can't a feller bitch about something he feels is horribly wrong and offensive he sees in the news?  Of course I know that we can't send in the Marines or the 82nd Airborne...that would offend Dear Leader's playmate

Seriously WK and Tom...aren't there still things in this world that make you go, WTF?! or Goddammit All??

Human beings suck...we have always sucked...and we will always suck...not all of us and not all of the time...but even in a world full of suckage, I find something from time to time that unnerves me.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

9

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Re: What? (no point, really)

wetkarma.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 12:08:42 AM EST

none


Seriously WK and Tom...aren't there still things in this world that make you go, WTF?! or Goddammit All??

Certainly -- but this isn't one of them.

Not my country. Not my people. Not my friends, not my family. I have no skin in the game and as such no urge to tell them how they should be running their justice system. They've built themselves a fine stable society for as long as the oil lasts/the world needs oil. As long as they aren't peeing in my coffee, I'll try not to pee in theirs.

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

10

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Re: What? (no point, really)

wetkarma.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 01:22:09 AM EST

none

I was (and am) pretty ticked off about p0157's recent story on the VA pro-rating disability claims of soldiers. So much so that I didn't (and still don't) feel I could add anything meaningful to the discussion other than a stream of invective. The thing is though, I feel pissed because I feel responsible. These men and women are my countrymen whose job I not only financially support via taxes/giftbox donations etc, but whose purpose and calling I consider to be a noble one.

In as much as the VA treats these people like shit, they are acting to some degree in my name.  That makes me pissed -- no one likes feeling dirty about themselves.

The saudi thing on the other hand -- I feel no particular responsibility for. Separate country, separate culture, separate laws -- as long as they are not whipping my friends/relatives my perspective is they can subjugate whomever they want. There are limits as to how much effort (physical and mental) I'll extend to help other humans

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

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Re: What? (no point, really)

Lou.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 05:01:18 AM EST

none

First off, my mother always said I was too sensitive.

Aside from that, I mostly agree with what you say about Saudi.  Their country, their laws, etc.  Although, along with being too sensitive, I tend to project.  In this case, I wonder what if that kind of totalitarian rule made its way over here.  Maybe not in a religious  sense (thank god)...but in the behavior of corporate culture...Walmart's treatment of its former worker, for example (and of course, Walmart's treatment of it's workers in general)

Of course, that's all mental stuff and I feel much better now...at least calmer.

Interesting enough, since you brought of the VA, while I too am outraged by the way we treat veterans...both home and overseas, I feel a little bit of that disconnect that you feel towards Saudi.  It's not like the VA's shabby treatment of vets is new...nor is it a secret.  It's no secret that we went to war in Iraq for weak reasons.  Yet people joined up*.  Why would someone join an organization that would treat them so badly if they were injured...or would use their flesh and blood for specious reasons?

In the end, though...you are correct.  People make choices all of the time whether it is to don a burqua...or a military uniform.   I guess in the short term I'll continue to send letters to my reps that say, "WTF is up with the VA?".  In the long term...well, is there a long term?

 *fortunately, it seems that folks are finally starting to wise up.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: What? (no point, really)

ms sue.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 11:28:07 AM EST

none

A little righteous indignation at how man treats man, country of origin notwithstanding, seems like a fine sentiment to me.

So I don't think you really need to defend your diary entry. I didn't infer a call to arms from it. I mean, come on, surely there is a middle ground between sending in the troops and wetkarma's brutal "Separate country, separate culture, separate laws -- as long as they are not whipping my friends/relatives my perspective is they can subjugate whomever they want"?

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Fine sentiments

Lou.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 12:03:56 PM EST

none

A little righteous indignation at how man treats man, country of origin notwithstanding, seems like a fine sentiment to me.

It seems that you and I are in the minority on this one, Sue.  From the general, "not within my vision - don't care" to Yeller's charming "Think about that next time you start your truck*. If you really gave a fuck you'd leave it to rust.".

I have to wonder..can't I give at least a little bit of a fuck?  Granted, there's not much I can do for women in Saudi other than write my congress folk and see if we can generate a bit more of a national sentiment than "astonishing"...of course, (I can't help but wonder what they found astonishing...Astonishing that it happened, astonishing that she got so few, or astonishing that Cheney got his first erection in years upon hearing the news.)

To tell the truth, I was kind of surprised by the response to this diary entry.  Go figure.

*Silly Rabbit...if only he knew that I don't own a truck.  I have a 7 year old Neon that still gets great gas mileage and doesn't burn oil.  Not to mention all of the cars I didn't buy.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: Fine sentiments

yeller.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 12:13:18 PM EST

none

Yeah you're just playing semantics. This kinda reminds me of junkies griping about the dealer beating his hos. He doesn't care what you think because you'll be down there tomorrow begging him for some more crack.

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Re: Fine sentiments

Lou.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 02:44:58 PM EST

none

I bow to your superior knowledge of junkies, ho's and dealers.  I have never met any of them...what are they like?

BTW, what dealer do you go to when your jonesing for some sweet light crude?

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: Fine sentiments

ms sue.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 01:28:29 PM EST

none

From the general, "not within my vision - don't care"

Ah, not so general and not a surprise in the least.

to Yeller's charming "Think about that next time you start your truck*. If you really gave a fuck you'd leave it to rust.".

Well, we did advertise for new members.

 

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Re: Fine sentiments

Lou.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 02:47:40 PM EST

none

Well, we did advertise for new members.

'Tis true...must take the bitter with the sweet and all that.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: Fine sentiments

yeller.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 04:03:52 PM EST

1.00 (offtopic, obnoxious)

Geez, you wonder why this place is so dead? You post this ridiculous, racist whine like your shit doesn't smell, then get all pissy when I point out how the Arabs get away with it. Fuck you and your holier-than-thou attitude, that goes for you to ms_sue.

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Re: Fine sentiments

ms sue.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 04:45:01 PM EST

5.00 (funny)

Fuck you and your holier-than-thou attitude, that goes for you to ms_sue.

Ah, well, at least I'm in good company.

Say, have we met?

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Re: Fine sentiments

zyxwvutsr.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 02:41:40 AM EST

5.00 (brilliant)

Fuck you and your holier-than-thou attitude, that goes for you to ms_sue.

Ah, well, at least I'm in good company.

Say, have we met?

I bet you have met, but it sure wasn't in grammar class.

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Re: Fine sentiments

tomc.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 06:11:41 PM EST

4.00 (astute)

You post this ridiculous, racist whine like your shit doesn't smell, then get all pissy when I point out how the Arabs get away with it. Fuck you and your holier-than-thou attitude, that goes for you to ms_sue.

We need to find a way to put the "fun" back in "disfunctional".

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Re: Fine sentiments

Lou.

Mon Nov 26, 2007 at 01:51:41 AM EST

4.00 (astute)

I would hardly call this place dead...in fact, it seems to get better and more lively each week.

Btw...Sue is right...you do sound familiar.  How were things on Plastic?

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: Fine sentiments

zyxwvutsr.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 02:52:35 AM EST

none

How were things on Plastic?
He doesn't know; he can't read very well

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Re: Fine sentiments

Lou.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 03:10:16 AM EST

none

I don't know...I thought his "Clinton's cock" comment was kind of funny.  You have to admit...blaming Clinton is a standard Republican fall back position.  I also don't know about his reading ability.  I assume you're alluding to his apparent inability to go back through your Plastic comments to find you supporting the war in Iraq.  I was tempted to do the same, but I'm just lazy...and I can read very well, thank you very much.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: Fine sentiments

zyxwvutsr.

Tue Nov 27, 2007 at 07:12:10 AM EST

4.00 (astute)

I assume you're alluding to his apparent inability to go back through your Plastic comments to find you supporting the war in Iraq
The inability to find something I've never written is not an indicator of poor reading ability. The inability to understand what I wrote is an indicator of poor reading ability.

I was tempted to do the same, but I'm just lazy
Even if you were industrious it wouldn't do you any good.

One of the things that's always amused me over on Plastic* is how almost any comment deviating from the political orthodoxy (the US is going to hell in a handbasket, the economy is worse now than ever before and getting worse every day * * , conservatives despise the poor and only care about themselves, Republicans are racists but Democrats aren't, the war in Iraq is illegal, etc.) is liable to get its author branded as Bush's lickspittle (and, concomitantly, wrong about the state of the economy, probably racist and heartless, and with an unthinking anti-Clinton bias); it doesn't matter how many times I've said that I voted against Bush.



* I shouldn't say "always," because things were more civil and intelligent there in the beginning, and probably at least through 2002.

 * * I'm also reminded of this by your comment about people you know who believe their home's market value has significantly dropped recently. I can't count the number of discussions on Plastic that I've engaged in that go something like this:

THEM:  The US economy is worse now than any time in the past forty years, and it's all Bush's fault.

ME: Well, actually the economy is doing rather well by historical standards - unemployment is low and the economy is growing at a decent pace. In any case, it's mostly due to the business cycle.

THEM: Statistics are meaningless; I know a lot of people who can't find a decent job because the economy is only generating minimum-wage McJobs. And anyway the Bushies have manipulated the unemployment statistics to make themselves look better. Besides, economics is bunk - no one can predict what the economy is going to do. And even if they could it wouldn't work because the corporations have the Republicans in their pocket and they run the show and are free to break the law without consequences. Like Enron.

I mean, what can you do with liberals who are blissfully, nay, proudly, ignorant of basic facts?

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The arguments break both ways

Lou.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 02:55:28 AM EST

4.00 (astute)

THEM: Statistics are meaningless; I know a lot of people who don't believe in global climate change because a few scientists disagree And anyway the liberals have manipulated the climate statistics to make themselves look better. Besides, environmental science is bunk - no one can predict what the weather is going to do. And even if they could it wouldn't work because the socialists have the scientists in their pocket and they run the show and are free to make up scare stats without consequences. Like Al Gore.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: The arguments break both ways

zyxwvutsr.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 08:41:51 AM EST

none

Rather than global warming deniers, I think a better analogy would be creationists: like liberals I was discussing above, creationists deny what is plainly true and they also think they are being righteous by doing so.

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Re: The arguments break both ways

Lou.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 08:57:18 AM EST

none

Well, we're both playing strawman...but that's part of the fun of TnT...  I guess is all comes back to what folks see with their own eyes and stats be damned.

For instance, if one is a member of the investment class, the economy might look as good as you say..especially with the DJIA rebounding up 300+ points today.

However, for folks who don't have any real job security, who have to pay more for health insurance, who see greater wealth disparity, the economy might not seem all that rosy.  The people I serve tend to see the economy from a day-to-day bill paying perspective and not from the perspective of a economic theorist.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

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Re: The arguments break both ways

zyxwvutsr.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 12:42:43 PM EST

none

we're both playing strawman
What strawman? I'm talking about actual people who have written things like I described above.

However, for folks who don't have any real job security, who have to pay more for health insurance, who see greater wealth disparity, the economy might not seem all that rosy
Yeah, but the point is that those people will never think the economy is good unless they do have an understanding of economics and what some of the basic economic indicators are. What you seem to be saying is that those people should be taken seriously when they hold opinions that are wrong.

What's more dangerous, of course, is when we have elected officials who seem to have a similarly poor understanding of economics. There are liberals, for example, who support Denis Kucinich for president, and as I've pointed out in the past Kucinich seems to be a man who believes things that are not true about the economy. I can only think that the people who support him also believe things that are not true. (In this regard they are like creationists, hence my comparison above.)

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Re: The arguments break both ways

Lou.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 01:47:02 PM EST

none

Yeah, but the point is that those people will never think the economy is good unless they do have an understanding of economics and what some of the basic economic indicators are.

Calling bullshit now.  My sense is that these people will never think that the economy is good unless they can stop worrying about their jobs going overseas, or not having health insurance, or maybe their house isn't worth what it should be and they can't take out an equity loan to pay for their kid's education. (see, I do at least know something about home values).  

You know, overall, the economy might be in good shape...unless of course there is some further unknown about the sub prime market that hasn't bit us in the ass yet.  I can read indicators...but I also spend a lot of my day listening to  people who are worried about the things I mentioned and I have to wonder -indicators or not- what is really going on.  Of course, in many ways you're right -if I may extrapolate- the more people understand, the less likely it will be that they will be fearful.  But, illogical they may be, fear is real and I don't think the indicators address that.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

53

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Re: The arguments break both ways

zyxwvutsr.

Thu Nov 29, 2007 at 07:08:12 AM EST

none

My sense is that these people will never think that the economy is good unless they can stop worrying about their jobs going overseas, or not having health insurance, or maybe their house isn't worth what it should be and they can't take out an equity loan to pay for their kid's education
Yes, I completely agree. The sort of people you are speaking about won't ever be happy about the economy because they don't understand it. The state of the economy can only be expressed in aggregate values, and those values have only an indirect influence on the probability that a particular person will lose his job or be unable to afford adequate health insurance or see the value of his house rise far faster than inflation.

overall, the economy might be in good shape...unless of course there is some further unknown about the sub prime market that hasn't bit us in the ass yet
In good shape compared to what? Compared to when?

As far as what's on the horizon, I think there is a decent chance of a recession next year. Liberal politicians will try to blame that on someone, and liberals who do not understand economics will listen to them and think they are right to do so.

illogical they may be, fear is real and I don't think the indicators address that
Sure there are. Consumer confidence is one such measure.  

12

^ 4

Re: What? (no point, really)

tomc.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 09:01:58 AM EST

none

Can't a feller bitch about something he feels is horribly wrong and offensive he sees in the news?  Of course I know that we can't send in the Marines or the 82nd Airborne...that would offend Dear Leader's playmate

Seriously WK and Tom...aren't there still things in this world that make you go, WTF?! or Goddammit All??

There certainly are a lot of outrageous things happening in the world.  But lashings and forced circumcisions and slavery and torture and mutilation in the name of justice pale compared to the way we overlook these acts if it manages to save us 10% when we shop.

That's the real outrage.  True, we occasionally focus on companies like Nike or Starbucks when we get word of slave labor and sweatshops. But terror, torture and murder have been going on for generations and we blindly accept it if the savings are justified.

Gas prices would have to be double what they are today before we start to pay serious attention to what's going on in Saudi Arabia. And even then, it'd be easier to find a replacement fuel and ignore the abuse of women in other countries - after all, it's much easier to ignore the rise in rural cancer rates due to increased insecticide use (no one eats corn destined for ethanol factories, so farmers don't have to adhere to the same insecticide, herbicide and fungicide guidelines).

My outrage is reserved for people like us who will accept any atrocity in order to save a dollar, as long as knowledge of those atrocities are kept on the periphery of our world view.

Children are enslaved, men and women not allowed lunch or bathroom breaks during 12 hour shifts, and miners have their hands chopped off for merely being suspected of stealing.  So what's an extra 100 lashes compared to all of that?

Besides, I just bought a gorgeous Martha Stewart 4 place dinner setting for only twenty bucks!

14

^ 12

Re: What? (no point, really)

Lou.

Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 11:50:37 AM EST

none

Besides, I just bought a gorgeous Martha Stewart 4 place dinner setting for only twenty bucks!

Oh snap!  You go girl!

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

15

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

yeller.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 03:37:26 AM EST

5.00 (astute, interesting)

Think about that next time you start your truck. If you really gave a fuck you'd leave it to rust.

16

^ 15

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

Lou.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 05:06:39 AM EST

4.66 (funny, funny)

Got it covered...I go to a boutique gas station where I buy only organically pumped, American produced gasoline.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

17

^ 15

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

zyxwvutsr.

Sun Nov 25, 2007 at 05:50:26 AM EST

4.33 (funny)

I'm converting my SUV to coal power. Safe. Dependable. American.

28

^ 15

Ever since I bought that transporter system ...

MayorBob.

Mon Nov 26, 2007 at 04:21:27 AM EST

4.50 (funny, funny, brilliant)

... my life has been so much less complicated.  It's just that those dilithium crystals are hella hard to come by.

Vita brevis. Quod amor sit in aeternum.

42

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

ms sue.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 05:19:41 AM EST

4.60 (informative, informative, informative)

Update:

SAUDI ARABIA
Rape victim's case to be reviewed

A Saudi court will review the case of a gang rape victim sentenced to jail and flogging for violating the country's strict sex segregation laws, the foreign minister said.

The remarks by Prince Saud al Faisal, made in the United States and carried by the official Saudi Press Agency, were the latest in response to international condemnation of Saudi judicial authorities' handling of the case.

It was also a sharp turn from a statement Saturday in which the Saudi Justice Ministry condemned the 19-year-old woman -- raped by seven men and then sentenced to six months in prison and 200 lashes -- as an adulteress who had allegedly confessed to cheating on her husband.

46

^ 42

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

ms sue.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 12:26:59 PM EST

none

Sorry. I forgot to italicize the above.

48

^ 46

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

tomc.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 01:06:22 PM EST

none

Too late for apologies now.

49

^ 48

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

thefadd.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 01:38:06 PM EST

4.00 (astute)

You mean from the Saudi courts or from people like wetkarma who said that world wide condemnation meant little?

It is easy to buy small plaster models of what you think life is like.

51

^ 49

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

tomc.

Wed Nov 28, 2007 at 04:30:19 PM EST

4.00 (funny, funny)

It's too late to apologize for forgetting italics.

65

^ 49

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

wetkarma.

Sat Dec 01, 2007 at 12:11:02 PM EST

none


You mean from the Saudi courts or from people like wetkarma who said that world wide condemnation meant little?

Hang on a tic. I call foul -- I don't recall saying anything of the kind. wtf? I said -I- personally didn't care and that my opinion of Saudi Arabia's decision hadn't changed. Still hasn't.

Now that you do bring it up however -- world wide condemnation does mean little if the saudi courts believe they are following sharia law. This annoucement reminds me of a story which ran on plastic a year or two ago regarding war criminal  Ratko Mladic -- the USA/western nations were refusing aid to Serbia until it went after war criminals. So sure enough after no action, the USA announced that Serbia was going after war criminals and Mladic would be soon arrested.

Care to guess where Mladic is these days? Its not in jail.

S. Africa endured decades of condemnation re: apartheid..what did it ultimately mean other than distracting those who need a cause to protest?

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

52

Gasoline... meet fire.

pO157.

Thu Nov 29, 2007 at 05:26:19 AM EST

none

Hypothetically, if you had a predominately fundamentalist Christian country in the same situation (education/indoctrination of religion in school, massive oil wealth so all the nations of the world give you a pass on your internal affairs and want to play friends) could you see this type of thing happening? Why? If not, why not?

Perhaps the problem is not Islam but simply radicalized Islam (or any radical[ized] religion) and the people who manipulate that religion for their own gain?

54

^ 52

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

ms sue.

Thu Nov 29, 2007 at 11:15:56 AM EST

none

Perhaps the problem is not Islam but simply radicalized Islam (or any radical[ized] religion) and the people who manipulate that religion for their own gain?

I know Lou did not qualify what he meant by "Islam," but I did assume that he was referring precisely to your latter two suggestions.

55

^ 54

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

pO157.

Thu Nov 29, 2007 at 11:22:37 AM EST

none

Rightyo.

But is it sad that I could see the same happen if any other religion were swapped for Islam in this case?

56

^ 55

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

Lou.

Thu Nov 29, 2007 at 02:07:31 PM EST

none

What Sue said.

But is it sad that I could see the same happen if any other religion were swapped for Islam in this case?

Sad...but aware.  Religion basically sucks...and radical religion even more so.  Except for maybe Buddhism.  I know it's not squeaky clean, but I really can't  see it being this fucked up.  As far as I know, no one has ever been jailed and deported for naming a teddy bear after Buddha.  Good thing she didn't make a statue of the teddy bear or they would have come after her with howitzers.

You just want to cut a fucking tomato and get on with your day

57

^ 56

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

pO157.

Thu Nov 29, 2007 at 02:18:00 PM EST

none

Sad. As I attempted to squeeze in "Lutheran, but technically Agnostic" on a bureaucratic form the other day I realized there are few religions (that I know of) that I could really get behind. Buddhism would be one close match. Hearing the Dali Lama speak once was one of the more memorable experiences of my life. Sadly many people in the crowd were either 1) Too Stoned to appreciate it, 2) Too busy quoting amusing Caddyshack monologues, 3) Too Stoned,  4) Chinese exchange students protesting His Holiness based on misquoted or out of context statements fed to them by the assjacks in power back in the homeland or 5) Waaaay too Stoned.

Perhaps then the question should become: What value is religion? Does its use as a method of Social Control exceed its obvious detrimental problems?

58

^ 57

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

ms sue.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 04:04:28 AM EST

none

What value is religion? Does its use as a method of Social Control exceed its obvious detrimental problems?

Can you just imagine how screwed up this world would be if we had no chance for redemption or everlasting life? :-)

59

^ 58

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

pO157.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 04:45:25 AM EST

none

When I was 'Losing my Religion' I pondered that same question myself. There are no good answers. The best I can come up with is this:

Let us assume life is nothing more than a cosmic accident that will be wiped out in the blink of an eye by the Universe. If living organisms exist simply to propagate their genetic information to the next generation and nothing more then that means certain properties we have that separate us from animals simply arose due to chance in the evolutionary process or as a way to enhance reproductive ability. This means consciousness, thought, emotion, etc are all accidental (and meaningless?).

Because Life is a 'Collective Right' and not an individual one* (each person reproduces and contributes so that society as a whole may continue while the people who make it up die over time) we will not continue to exist forever. Since we have limited time we might as well make the best of what we have. Now, that does not mean society should devolve into collective hedonism. What it does mean is that since everybody has only one shot before fading into obscurity we should do our best to Seize the Day (tm) and do what makes us happy. That means caring for yourself, family, friends and others, as well as living the Golden Rule.

Losing the 'spiritual safety net' can be a scary experience. It scared the crap out of me. But then I realized that it may actually be a Good Thing(tm). Once we realize that each of us and only us have the keys to our own joy and prosperity it actually can be quite empowering.

Or, you could just argue that Religion is a natural byproduct of the mind to help maintain order in a species that is naturally prone to some pretty scary shit. Either way.

Anywho, I apologize to anybody who read that. Please feel free to bill me for any antidepressants or the like you may need after this experience. Thank you.

*=This is a horrible analogy and it is obvious I have been reading too many 2nd Amendment and other constitutional law arguments lately.

60

^ 59

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

ms sue.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 06:07:02 AM EST

none

Well, I was going for irony. Wrong emoticon, I guess.

What it does mean is that since everybody has only one shot before fading into obscurity we should do our best to Seize the Day (tm) and do what makes us happy. That means caring for yourself, family, friends and others, as well as living the Golden Rule.

But here, you define happiness for the rest of us. Many would conclude, though, that with one shot, it's to hell with "others." Hell, didn't someone say something similar to that in this very diary entry? Full circle we've come.

64

^ 60

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

pO157.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 10:56:50 AM EST

none

Well, I was going for irony. Wrong emoticon, I guess.

I am sorry about misunderstanding that. That's why you shouldn't try to read/write responses quickly from your desk at work I suppose.

But here, you define happiness for the rest of us. Many would conclude, though, that with one shot, it's to hell with "others."

Sure, until the "others" put somebody in prison for theft or violating societies rules. Sometimes being kind is not always out of altruism. Quite an extreme example, I acknowledge, but still.

61

^ 59

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

thefadd.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 08:54:19 AM EST

none

Because Life is a 'Collective Right' and not an individual one* (each person reproduces and contributes so that society as a whole may continue while the people who make it up die over time) we will not continue to exist forever.

I don't see why that theory would lend itself to the conclusion that life is a collective right moreso than an individual right.

It is easy to buy small plaster models of what you think life is like.

63

^ 61

Probably was not clear

pO157.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 09:00:05 AM EST

4.00 (informative)

I was thinking from more of a biological perspective in that life is all about prorogation of genetic material. Therefore, it does not matter so much if you die as long as you have passed along your DNA to your offspring, and quite frankly it is better if you do kick off so the younger and healthier people get the resources.

62

^ 59

Re: Gasoline... meet fire.

thefadd.

Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 08:59:33 AM EST

none

Or, you could just argue that Religion is a natural byproduct of the mind to help maintain order in a species that is naturally prone to some pretty scary shit.

It's always scary until you realize that your realization doesn't actually change anything about the way things really are.

My link in response to wetkarma's revolution etymology comment actually has some interesting things to say about that. It was putting forth the interpretation that apocalypse cults and the like are an avatar for coping with the end of a collective world view. ie, people have to sacrifice their gods for others that better fit the world around them.

It is easy to buy small plaster models of what you think life is like.

66

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

saudjp.

Wed May 26, 2010 at 10:01:52 AM EST

none

i hate saudi i from taif they stupid
helpe me from here saudis stupid :(
they not love Science
and i see in street do u bleve student beating Teacher in the street !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
No system No respect O_0

67

^ 66

Re: Fuck Saudi fucking Arabia

hassansheikh23.

Thu Dec 02, 2010 at 11:07:10 PM EST

none

I spent most of my time in Saudi arabia nd use fuck 19 years old girls and desperate house wives . Its very easy to control and fuck saudi woemn

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