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Wednesday, August 01, 2012

OTP- August 2012: The Leader Post: New stadium won’t have same appeal, says Bill ‘Spaceman’ Lee

“Building a new stadium down the street does not work unless (Ron) Lancaster spilled some DNA in the lot where they’re going to build the new stadium,” he added. “You have to refurbish (Mosaic Stadium). You’ve got to can all new ideas you might have and use the sacred ground. Fenway did that and that is why Fenway is loved. The new Yankee Stadium isn’t the same as it used to be.”

The former Boston Red Sox and Montreal Expos pitcher will not be running for the vacant mayor’s position in Regina later this year. With his opinion on the new stadium, he wasn’t sure he would garner many votes anyway. But that is nothing new to the former member of the Rhinoceros Party. Lee ran on the Rhino ticket in 1988 for president of the United States. Not surprisingly, he didn’t make the ballot in a single state. He said one of the high-ranking members within the party gave him a six-pack of Molson Canadian and asked him to run for president.

“I adhered to their funny philosophy,” Lee said. “My campaign slogan was ‘No guns, no butter. They’ll both kill you.’ And I only campaigned in federal prisons where I knew they couldn’t vote, and I only accepted a quarter in campaign contributions.”

With it being an election year in the U.S., Lee said he is all in for the re-election of Barack Obama.

“The only time (Mitt) Romney opens his mouth is when he needs to change feet,” Lee said of the Republican nominee. “If Obama does lose this, which I can’t see happening, then it’s because of a lady in Florida who works for Jeb Bush and Diebold, the voting-machine company. If Obama even comes close to losing this election, it’ll be fraud.”

Guess what, its the new OT politics thread!

Tripon Posted: August 01, 2012 at 12:04 AM | 5975 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: boston, politics

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   5201. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:10 PM (#4222673)
That actually had a military component to it. It was grisly, gruesome, possibly immoral, but still different from the others. They were actually trying to wipe out industry. Firebombing just happened to be the most effective weapon. Hiroshima had no other purpose but to kill civilians.


Hiroshima was a major port city - I don't think it was necessarily IJN - may have been more merchant based, but it was a major port... not that I disagree with you fundamentally.
   5202. McCoy Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:12 PM (#4222676)
Flip:

Secondly by saying it is the fault of the government to not evacuate cities you are stripping individuals of their right to life and lumping them into some group that is ok'ed to be slaughtered. Either a human being has a right to life at all times or they don't. Saying "oh well, your government made poor choices I get to kill you now" doesn't make the act of killing that person moral or not immoral.

The Germans killed millions of Russians in Leningrad and Stalingrad. That was okey-dokey?
   5203. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:13 PM (#4222678)
The A-Bombs weren't good, but I'm not sure there was a better option. Would a continued blockade have been better? A mass invasion?


I think it was the best option, but I don't know how you can say that given:

You can't just murder enemy civilians as a soldier; that's still immoral.


and

You can't kill innocent civilians, even if ordered to do so.


and

If the war is immoral (country X invades country Y simply to steal resources) the soldiers are not acting immorally in fighting the war (i.e. killing the enemy soldiers). They do act immorally if they intentionally kill innocent civilians. That's also true if the war is just.

In WW2, an American GI who killed an innocent German civilian, or a POW, is just as guilty as an SS trooper who killed an innocent Jew or Russian POW. Both, are equally innocent if they kill enemy combatants in combat.
   5204. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:14 PM (#4222679)
Well that's a fundamental disagreement. I don't believe morality is a societal construct, and I don't believe humans are mere animals.


This is just so Snapperlicious and quaint. He also drives a horse and buggy to work.
   5205. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:15 PM (#4222680)
Hiroshima was a major port city - I don't think it was necessarily IJN - may have been more merchant based, but it was a major port... not that I disagree with you fundamentally.


Hiroshima had no military value. That's why it was untouched until little boy.
   5206. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:16 PM (#4222683)
The very nature of things and the reality of humanness.


But the rights people actual have (in the real world) has changed dramtically over the last few centuries, while the nature of things really hasn't. is there a Platonic ideal set of rights? What are they? What happens if the government/society gives rights to its populous that are not in that set of Platonic rights? Is it OK to then have those "not real" rights taken away, since they really are not rights as defined by the nature of reality?
   5207. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:16 PM (#4222686)
The A-Bombs weren't good, but I'm not sure there was a better option. Would a continued blockade have been better? A mass invasion?


If it were me, I might have tried the blockade -- eventually, you simply end even Japan's ability to launch kamikaze attacks. That said, based on what the allies knew to that point - I can see the point of rejecting that option.

I know we've had this argument in other threads, but I likewise don't think the Soviets storming through Manchuria can be totally discounted in bringing about peace. Yes - their industry and war machine had been smashed and yes, they had been driven almost wholly out of the Pacific... but they still held enormous swaths of mainland Asia and I could see a reasonable for the Japanese to insist that holding so much territory still left them an out for a negotiated settlement. The Soviets nearly rolling up the whole of Manchuria in a matter of weeks likewise impacted some thinking. I think it also impacted American thinking -- despite some of the revisionism about the Iron Curtain - I don't think Truman was blind to the fact that Russian influence in the east could have been a problem, too.
   5208. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:16 PM (#4222687)
How accurate does an atom bomb need to be?

So it was the Japanese's fault for not knowing ahead of time to evacuate Hiroshima and Nagasaki? How about Tokyo? Were they supposed to evacuate all of their cities to protect their innocent civilians?


See [5199].

When a country decided to intentionally involve its civilians in last-ditch resistance, and continually violate all rules of law, they certainly bear a good deal of responsibility when the enemy responds.
   5209. Döner Kebap Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4222691)
The very nature of things and the reality of humanness.

They certainly aren't bestowed by government, since humans have the right to disband their government.


Say what? Humans don't disband their governments based on rights. They either have armed revolutions, or demonstrations large enough to make it clear that any attempt to continue governing them will result in their overwhelming numbers resisting it. In other words governments are built and disbanded by power. Sometimes that power is used to defend a set of rights that a majority has agreed upon. Sometimes that power is used to maintain the position of those in power.

Rights have not one thing to do with it.

And this idea that rights are natural? Then why do our notions of human rights keep changing through history? Up until pretty recently, we thought it perfectly ok to treat other humans as property.
   5210. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4222692)
If it were me, I might have tried the blockade

Which would have starved millions of civilians to death.
   5211. McCoy Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4222693)
The thing is that according Snapper the only option would be a mass blockade that forces nation wide starvation since the only moral thing to do is to take no direct action that causes death.

Hey, we're not killing you we're just making sure you don't get out kill other people. If you wish to give up your attempts to kill other people we'll stop blockading you.

It should be the only option you are for.
   5212. Joe Kehoskie Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4222694)
What I said was that 'war on women' resonates. It's not a matter of women lying in one poll or another -- it's the fact that none of the polls you cited gauge intensity of feeling.

Polls from the same organizations show gaps nearing 10 points (gallup shows women +8, others show +10).

What polls from the same organizations? Re: abortion or re: the GOP vs. Dem split?
   5213. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4222695)
Where do rights come from? (I guess I need that lesson)

The very nature of things and the reality of humanness.

They certainly aren't bestowed by government, since humans have the right to disband their government.


Drat... we're in repeats.

It doesn't matter where rights come from - ultimately, it has only been institutions (governments) that have been able to successfully defend them. The philosophical debate is for parlors -- in reality, it's always government that either ensures them.

Perhaps this catnip will draw Dan back... My recollection is that we had this discussion about slavery... which is sure to be another fun feww pages.
   5214. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4222696)
I think it was the best option, but I don't know how you can say that given:

You can't just murder enemy civilians as a soldier; that's still immoral.



and

You can't kill innocent civilians, even if ordered to do so.

and

If the war is immoral (country X invades country Y simply to steal resources) the soldiers are not acting immorally in fighting the war (i.e. killing the enemy soldiers). They do act immorally if they intentionally kill innocent civilians. That's also true if the war is just.

In WW2, an American GI who killed an innocent German civilian, or a POW, is just as guilty as an SS trooper who killed an innocent Jew or Russian POW. Both, are equally innocent if they kill enemy combatants in combat.


Personally killing an individual is different than attacking legitimate targets surrounded by civilians. The accuracy/collateral damage line for legitimate and not is very hard to parse.
   5215. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:20 PM (#4222699)
What I said was that 'war on women' resonates. It's not a matter of women lying in one poll or another -- it's the fact that none of the polls you cited gauge intensity of feeling.

Polls from the same organizations show gaps nearing 10 points (gallup shows women +8, others show +10).


What polls from the same organizations? Re: abortion or re: the GOP vs. Dem split?


One of the polls you cited is sourced to gallup. I simply went to their latest Presidential poll and looked at the crosstabs.
   5216. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4222701)
The Germans killed millions of Russians in Leningrad and Stalingrad. That was okey-dokey?

As long as the military action was aimed at combatants, yes.

They don't bear responsibility civilians who starved to death or were inadvertently killed by shells/bombs. Likewise, the Allies don't bear responsibility for the French civilians killed in Overlord.
   5217. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4222702)
It doesn't matter where rights come from - ultimately, it has only been institutions (governments) that have been able to successfully defend them.
But it has almost never been institutions (governments) which have advocated for new rights or new extensions of rights to groups of people. Government follows people, it does not lead. Rights come from people, from our disputes and our beliefs, our practices and our capacities. People then seek to secure these rights through institutions.
   5218. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4222703)
They certainly aren't bestowed by government, since humans have the right to disband their government.


I think the problem you have here is the assumption that the government is completely exogenous from the people. It isn't. There is a strong interdependence of the two.

In an ideal sense people consent to be governed, and that governence protects the rights the people collectively decide on. Obviously there are complications with intermediaries (elected officials) and such, but that is the basic idea. To posit rights from nothingness seems odd to me.

Put another way, people have the rights they demand that their government provide and protect. And when the government fails, often the government is replaced.

EDIT: I think a Coke to MCOA, because I believe we are saying much the same thing.
   5219. GregD Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4222704)
Where do rights come from? (I guess I need that lesson)

The very nature of things and the reality of humanness.

They certainly aren't bestowed by government, since humans have the right to disband their government.
Well, not exactly. Humans don't have a "right" to disband their government. There is a right to revolution; if you win, it counts. That's all that means. No one posits that any person can disband their government by themselves, nor even that a majority can inherently disband a government. The Civil War settled that for the US; it is a commonplace in international law that existing governments had a right to persist barring serious collapse.

If you want to ask why we have rights, then the answer goes into Enlightenment beliefs about the nature of humanity, about what is self-evident. But what is self-evident are "truths" not rights.

But if you want to ask where our rights literally come from, there's no question that it's government. Absent government, our rights would mean nothing. Rights move upward from bodily autonomy and property and as has been said for centuries, no government means no property, since piracy and brigandage rule the day.

If a right is just an ethical claim, a truth about the ideal human condition, it may exist on its own. But if a right is actually to mean anything, it has to be defensible and the only way rights can be defensible on their own terms is with the backing of a government.

If rights existed without government, then our Founders sure made some strange choices, didn't they? Since the first thing they did to protect their rights was form one government, then when its weakness threatened rights of property, to form a stronger one.

   5220. McCoy Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4222705)
When a country decided to intentionally involve its civilians in last-ditch resistance, and continually violate all rules of law, they certainly bear a good deal of responsibility when the enemy responds.

So because some might become combatants all civilians become combatants?

America believes that Japanese civilians are enemy combatants so we get to drop two atomic bombs on them and it is okay. Germany believes that Jewish civilians are enemy combatants and they kill millions of them and that is not okay?
   5221. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4222707)
speaking only as someone who once upon a time was in the armed forces during time of conflict i certainly do not think i am guilty of anything that could be determined in a court of law but nor do i regard myself as innocent and fully anticipate not joining my wife in the great beyond.

good thing heat doesn't bother me
   5222. Joe Kehoskie Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4222708)
One of the polls you cited is sourced to gallup. I simply went to their latest Presidential poll and looked at the crosstabs.

Crosstabs re: abortion or crosstabs re: party split?
   5223. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4222709)
The thing is that according Snapper the only option would be a mass blockade that forces nation wide starvation since the only moral thing to do is to take no direct action that causes death.

Hey, we're not killing you we're just making sure you don't get out kill other people. If you wish to give up your attempts to kill other people we'll stop blockading you.

It should be the only option you are for.


It's possible that that's more moral, but you have to weigh the odds of success, and how many people will die.
   5224. McCoy Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:25 PM (#4222710)
As long as the military action was aimed at combatants, yes.

Every single Russian was considered a combatant by Hitler.
   5225. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:26 PM (#4222712)
Personally killing an individual is different than attacking legitimate targets surrounded by civilians. The accuracy/collateral damage line for legitimate and not is very hard to parse.


There was no legitimate military target in Hiroshima. Yes, it was a port city, but by Aug 1945 Japan had no ships left. And in any event, the purpose of dropping the bomb was not to destroy any military target anyway. It was to kill as many people as possible. In this instance, any military targets destroyed were the collateral damage. I doubt anyone gave a flying fig whether the port was destroyed or not.
   5226. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4222713)
But the rights people actual have (in the real world) has changed dramtically over the last few centuries, while the nature of things really hasn'

That's because governments have regularly made it their business to suppress peoples' rights.

   5227. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:29 PM (#4222714)
So because some might become combatants all civilians become combatants?

America believes that Japanese civilians are enemy combatants so we get to drop two atomic bombs on them and it is okay. Germany believes that Jewish civilians are enemy combatants and they kill millions of them and that is not okay?


Of course Germany believed no such thing, and there was no evidence of it.

Japan intentionally dispersed war industries into residential areas, was organizing civilians for resistance, encouraged civilians to fight or commit suicide on Iwo Jima and Okinawa, and launched bat-#### insane Kamikaze attacks.

I'm not saying the atomic bombing are clearly moral, they bother me a lot. I'm just not sure what the better alternatives were given the facts on the ground at the time. An invasion or blockade might have killed orders of magnitude more civilians.
   5228. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:29 PM (#4222716)
It was to kill as many people as possible.


I would argue it was to intimidate the Japanese by killing as many as possible in a very shocking way. one bomb to destroy a city was simply impossible, and yet it happened. If they could have dropped the bomb, forced surrender, and killed no one I am positive they would have done that.
   5229. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:30 PM (#4222717)
Every single Russian was considered a combatant by Hitler.

That's not legitimate, and the Germans did not try to annihilate all Russians.
   5230. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:30 PM (#4222718)
I sense a potential bootstrapping problem.


yep,

The real problem with the list in 5172, is not that it isn't funny (some of it is actually)
it's that it completely fails at satire because it is just too stupid.

5:30 PM - Eliot Spitzer Speaks on "Family Values" via Satellite

as a standalone, that's "funny" as a satirical attack on Dems and the Dems, lack of values, no- Spitzer ran as a mnoralist- and when caught was forced out- BY HIS OWN PARTY (but guys who make lists like that don't seem to realize that, they see Repubs trying to get Akin to leave and say, "see, we police our own, the Dems don't)


4:45 PM -Al Sharpton / Jesse Jackson seminar "How to have a successful career without having a job."
well, kind of funny, but not accurate, relentless self-promotion is a job- you should be able to do a better job of nailing ethd emnds for cuddling up to them than this.

9:45 PM - Personal Finance Seminar - Charlie Rangle
Bingo, direct hit- but judging by the rest of the list, just a random occurrence

10:30 PM - Ceremonial Waving of White Flag for IRAQ , & Afghanistan
??? in some alternative universe?

11:15 PM - Free Gov. Blagovich rally
really? there is ZERO support on the left for Rod
11:30 PM - Obama Accepts Oscar, Tony and Latin Grammy Awards

another good one, but given all the complete misses, yet another random hit

12:01 AM - Obama Accepts Nomination as Lord and Savior
this could sorta work in a 2008 list, now?
   5231. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:30 PM (#4222719)
Which would have starved millions of civilians to death.


And not killing the innocent schmuck the aliens had the hate-on for doomed all life on the planet, but you were all "NO!" on that one. This is strangely inconsistent from you.
   5232. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4222720)
I would argue it was to intimidate the Japanese by killing as many as possible in a very shocking way. one bomb to destroy a city was simply impossible, and yet it happened. If they could have dropped the bomb, forced surrender, and killed no one I am positive they would have done that.

I agree.
   5233. Lassus Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4222721)
Now that I've caught up, I consider this analogy war regarding abortion to be ridiculous and irrelevant.
   5234. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4222722)
It doesn't matter where rights come from - ultimately, it has only been institutions (governments) that have been able to successfully defend them.

Or not ... mostly not.
   5235. clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4222723)
That's because governments have regularly made it their business to suppress peoples' rights.
but if rights were given to you by god, then governments wouldn't be able to suppress them.


   5236. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4222724)
That's because governments have regularly made it their business to suppress peoples' rights.


If rights are inate, then it seems clear to me that every government in history has supressed rights, correct? In fact I would argue that you can't have government without surpressing rights (in your scenario, which I don't accept, btw)
   5237. SteveF Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:35 PM (#4222728)
but if rights were given to you by god, then governments wouldn't be able to suppress them.


People have rights given to them by government (for the sake of argument) that are suppressed all the time. If we have no concept of what rights we should have, upon what basis do we criticize other governments (e.g. North Korea, China, Iran) for not providing their citizenry those rights?
   5238. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:35 PM (#4222729)
11:30 PM - Obama Accepts Oscar, Tony and Latin Grammy Awards


I forgot that one, and thought it was funny. I mean really does anyone actually think Obama deserved a Nobel Peace prize? Really? Maybe someday (though in light of his foreign policy likely not), but in 2009 it was just silly (and thought so at the time). Not his fault though.
   5239. JuanGone..except1game Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:35 PM (#4222730)
I'm so glad that Republicans don't play to stereotypes
When asked "what's the reason you think most black voters support Democratic candidates?" the most common answer was "don't know." But among Republicans who answered the Aug. 15-19 poll, the next most common replies were:

Government dependents/want something for nothing/welfare: 59
Supportive of welfare entitlements: 36
Parents voted Democratic/taught to vote Democratic: 17
Uniformed/ignorant/uneducated: 16
More helpful to African Americans: 15
   5240. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:36 PM (#4222731)
I would argue it was to intimidate the Japanese by killing as many as possible in a very shocking way. one bomb to destroy a city was simply impossible, and yet it happened. If they could have dropped the bomb, forced surrender, and killed no one I am positive they would have done that.


I agree with that as well. Killing 80,000 people was a means to an end. But I'm puzzled as to why snapper, who has repeatedly argued that one cannot under any circumstances, intentionally kill a civilian during wartime, even to protect the life of another soldier, thinks killing 80,000 is OK.
   5241. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:36 PM (#4222732)
Humans don't have a "right" to disband their government.

Of course they do ... see, e.g. the US Constitution which allows for amendments and the calling of a new constitutional convention. Other constitutions likely have similar provisions, though I'm not going to look them up -- and parliaments regularly dissolve themselves or are dissolved.

Though this is wholly contrary to modern liberal dogma, the consent of the governed -- and the rights and persons of the governed -- trumps and precedes the government.
   5242. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:36 PM (#4222734)
Andy,

I found a couple of those actually amusing. The opening flag burning and tribute to 57 states I thought were the two best bits. I have a low sense of humor though.


Hell, most liberals I know could write better parodies of liberalism in our sleep. Nobody's ever carved up liberal academia better than Malcolm Bradbury did in The History Man, and the first sendup of "political correctness" was written over 50 years ago by the Communist Jessica Mitford.
   5243. spycake Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:39 PM (#4222735)
While I'm sure the particulars of snapper's position have been mischaracterized many times over by now, it is interesting to see that he is willing to grant many "moral" exceptions to "pro-life" stance outside of abortion.
   5244. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:39 PM (#4222736)
And not killing the innocent schmuck the aliens had the hate-on for doomed all life on the planet, but you were all "NO!" on that one. This is strangely inconsistent from you.

There's a moral difference between action and inaction.

I'm not sure the Allies had an "innactive" option in 1945. Blockade is an action, just like bombing and invading.
   5245. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:40 PM (#4222738)
I agree with that as well. Killing 80,000 people was a means to an end. But I'm puzzled as to why snapper, who has repeatedly argued that one cannot under any circumstances, intentionally kill a civilian during wartime, even to protect the life of another soldier, thinks killing 80,000 is OK.


This. Snapper is throwing his convictions out the window in order to defend American actions in WW II. It's disconcerting to watch.
   5246. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:42 PM (#4222740)
There's a moral difference between action and inaction.


You're parsing now. A blockade is a lot more inactive than dropping a giant ####### radioactive fire on fishmongers and kindergarten kids. Not shooting a guy is an action too, as much as blockading is an action. You want to split hairs here because you want to defend the action, even though by your stated moral criteria the action is *clearly* abhorrent.
   5247. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4222742)
It doesn't matter where rights come from - ultimately, it has only been institutions (governments) that have been able to successfully defend them.


Or not ... mostly not.


I can't find the original discussion, but it came up concerning slavery.

The idea of 'natural rights' granted by a creator was espoused in the Declaration of Independence, and at least nominally codified in the Constitution. Yet - the constitution explicitly denied these natural rights to human beings. No providence or invisible hand enforced those rights -- millions were born and died in bondage and servitude.

It took a government - only then, in response to secession - followed by laws, including amendments to the constitution, to secure those rights.

I'm curious how you can 'mostly not'. What 'rights' have been secured without a government to codify and protect/enforce them?

Since the dawn of civilization, I honestly am not aware of any beyond the most basic metaphysical...
   5248. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4222743)
America believes that Japanese civilians are enemy combatants so we get to drop two atomic bombs on them and it is okay. Germany believes that Jewish civilians are enemy combatants and they kill millions of them and that is not okay?


1: I think our dropping nukes on two populated cities was a war crime, it took me a long time to come around to this view.

2: I find your equivalency (if you are drawing a direct equivalency) to be false and dishonest.

1. The Jewish civilians did not start the war, they were not involved in starting the war, Germany with no justification started the war in order to invade, plunder and permanently occupy the land of others.

2. The Jewish civilians were not enemy combatants, and the Nazis knew they were not, rather the healthy ones were seen as a short term source of slave labor FOR the Germans, but in the end the Nazis simply intended to kill all of them.

3. Japanese Civilians formed the support for the Japanese economy/war machine, killing Japanese civilians did have a negative effect on the Japanese war effort- to the country when the Nazis killed Jews that had no negative effect whatsoever on the allied war effort- and indeed using so many resources to kill Jews rather than fight the Allies had a negative impact on Germanys war effort.

4. We didn't want to kill all the Japanese (Ok Bull Halsey and others did), we didn't try to kill all the Japanese- we wanted them to stop fighting, surrender and accept occupation.

   5249. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4222744)
I'm not sure the Allies had an "innactive" option in 1945. Blockade is an action, just like bombing and invading.


They could have just declared victory and gone home. Or kept up the blockade but allowed in only non-military items.
   5250. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4222745)
I agree with that as well. Killing 80,000 people was a means to an end. But I'm puzzled as to why snapper, who has repeatedly argued that one cannot under any circumstances, intentionally kill a civilian during wartime, even to protect the life of another soldier, thinks killing 80,000 is OK.

Because I don't see an option where they killed fewer than 80,000. If one can only choose among evils, you must choose the lesser evil.

If Vladimir Putin is running against Joseph Stalin for President, you vote for Putin, even though he's reprehensible.
   5251. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:44 PM (#4222746)
I don't agree with snapper, but think he has been fairly OK on the consistency part (other than maybe the Hiroshima and other bombing parts, but I am trying to keep an open mind).

Andy - I don't think it was super funny, but I do think amusing.
   5252. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:44 PM (#4222748)
I mean really does anyone actually think Obama deserved a Nobel Peace prize?


No, he really really really should have had the sense/humility to turn it down.

The sad part, if you made a list of the least deserving Nobel Peace Prize winners, he's not even close to the top.
   5253. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4222749)
If rights are inate, then it seems clear to me that every government in history has supressed rights, correct? In fact I would argue that you can't have government without surpressing rights (in your scenario, which I don't accept, btw)


See, in the Garden of Eden, there was no government but the Divine dominion of man over creation. And that is all that is moral or justified (and note, would you, that woman was part of the dominion, not part of the dominating.)

Rights are not inate. They're contingent. Everything else is religious claptrap buried in spin and rhetoric.
   5254. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:47 PM (#4222750)
They could have just declared victory and gone home.


No they couldn't, the allies did that in WWI, look how that turned out for them.
   5255. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:47 PM (#4222751)
They could have just declared victory and gone home. Or kept up the blockade but allowed in only non-military items.

Were the Japanese going to release our POWs, and stop killing/starving civilians in their occupied countries? If not, that wasn't a choice.

It's not moral to consign millions of Allied POWs and Chinese/Filipino/Malaysian/Vietnamese/Burmese civilians to death, in order to save Japanese lives.

You want to split hairs here because you want to defend the action, even though by your stated moral criteria the action is *clearly* abhorrent.

I'm splitting hairs because I don't honestly see a less abhorrent option.
   5256. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:48 PM (#4222752)
Were the Japanese going to release our POWs, and stop killing/starving civilians in their occupied countries? If not, that wasn't a choice.


And yet, it's not OK to kill one innocent to save billions. That just doesn't compute.
   5257. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:49 PM (#4222753)
5246. Rickey is willfully losing badminton games Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:42 PM (#4222740)
There's a moral difference between action and inaction.

You're parsing now. A blockade is a lot more inactive than dropping a giant ####### radioactive fire on fishmongers and kindergarten kids.


The Japanese were already starving, a continued blockade may have been even more immoral caused more suffering than the bomb.
   5258. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:49 PM (#4222754)
What 'rights' have been secured without a government to codify and protect/enforce them?

I thought the question was "existing," not "securing."

If all you're saying is that rights are more secure if a whole bunch of people support them ... well, yeah.
   5259. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:49 PM (#4222755)
I'm splitting hairs because I don't honestly see a less abhorrent option.


Okay.

You should consider the fact that there's never a clean option in the real world. All real world choices are choices between abhorrent and less abhorrent options. As such, your theory is possibly a bit of high-minded wish casting that even you toss to the side immediately when you have to do real world moral math.
   5260. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:50 PM (#4222756)
I'm splitting hairs because I don't honestly see a less abhorrent option.


How do you feel about the second atomic bombing? To me that is the one that is really indefensible.
   5261. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4222760)
How do you feel about the second atomic bombing? To me that is the one that is really indefensible.

They certainly should have waited longer to let them surrender.

They also could have chosen less populated targets.
   5262. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4222761)
But it has almost never been institutions (governments) which have advocated for new rights or new extensions of rights to groups of people. Government follows people, it does not lead. Rights come from people, from our disputes and our beliefs, our practices and our capacities. People then seek to secure these rights through institutions.


Oh hey - you can even drop the 'almost'.

People come before government and governments are created by people. It is this institution that enunciates the rights, it is the institution that defends these rights, and it is ultimately the institution that carries the practical responsibilities for them.

Whether it's god, God, the Flying Spaghetti Monster, karma, or whatever that ultimately sows the seeds of rights is really only interesting me to after a few bong hits... From a practical perspective - those things (or whichever one a person fancies as the originator) have failed to actually bring about the reality of those rights for the whole humanity prior to the start of civilization and even after civilization, large swaths of people weren't covered. It has always been institutions - governments, sometimes/often with their armies, but even in peace, through its systems of laws, courts, and law enforcement - that make them real.

   5263. Jay Z Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4222762)
Ever heard of the entire world prior to the 19th century?

Famines were commonplace every where through most of history. Often, there just wasn't enough food b/c of bad weather.

It didn't mean society ceased to function. The elites and authorities had enough food. It was the peasants that starved.


I don't think it's okay to murder someone for food. But I think that Jesus thought that the elites and authorities in those societies were going to hell. He was fairly clear about that.

If someone with abundant food came to Jesus and said "a starving guy stole some of my food, what should I do?" His answer would have been that the guy should give the rest of his food away to other starving people. The asker of the question has the log in their eye. Arguably the stealer is sinning, but it's clear he considered wealth to be the greater sin. Feeding the hungry even goes back to Levticus 19 and not harvesting the edges of the fields. If a society was or is to tackle sin, there's no question which comes first.
   5264. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4222763)
Were the Japanese going to release our POWs, and stop killing/starving civilians in their occupied countries? If not, that wasn't a choice.

That's just a milder subset of the "aliens will kill everyone and despoil Mother Earth forevermore, but won't if we execute one person," and you came out the other way.

   5265. Döner Kebap Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:53 PM (#4222764)
Though this is wholly contrary to modern liberal dogma, the consent of the governed trumps and precedes the government.


That's just an expression of power. It's not a right. You present overwhelming numbers and the government dissolves. What you're talking about is a process set up to allow for a peaceful transition rather than a violent revolution. But only because if the conditions for this transition are met (i.e. enough people in support of it) to fight it would mean a war.

Our current understanding of human rights is entirely the product of the dispersing of power (i.e. expanding sufferage.) For example, until very recently, women were not believed to share in our notion of human rights. Rights were indirectly extended to them because they were the property of those with rights (i.e. property owning men). Now that women have the franchise, our sense of human rights has expanded to include a right to privacy that covers the precincts of the female body. Previous to this century, a woman's uterus was the property of whatever man had a claim on her (father or husband), as was the fetus growing there.
   5266. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:54 PM (#4222766)
The Japanese were already starving, a continued blockade may have been even more immoral caused more suffering than the bomb.


And how do you know, a priori, that killing 160,000 civilians and wiping out 2 militarily insignificant cities would do the trick?

When the alien thread hypo was first proposed and everyone got their moral panties in an uproar, someone asked "How can you trust these aliens to keep their word?" I responded flippantly "It couldn't hurt to try." Well, that's exactly what Hiroshima was, it was a "couldn't hurt to try." I don't see where killing one to save billions is wrong, but killing 100,000 to save millions is OK.
   5267. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:55 PM (#4222767)
Rights are not inate. They're contingent.

Of course. Because modern liberals must reserve the right to vitiate them (*) -- it's inherent in and indispensible to the philosophy.

But we already knew that.

(*) On their whim.
   5268. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:55 PM (#4222768)
I thought the question was "existing," not "securing."

If all you're saying is that rights are more secure if a whole bunch of people support them ... well, yeah.


Does a right exist if it's not secured and enforced?

I hate philosophy, but might as well go the full Descartes... do I have a right to not wear pants if the authorities continually arrest me and clothe me in them when I refuse?

I say no... until I can enjoy those rights and practice the freedoms of those rights, I do not have them.
   5269. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:57 PM (#4222771)
Does a right exist if it's not secured and enforced?

Yes. Antebellum southern blacks had the right not to be enslaved.
   5270. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:58 PM (#4222772)
Of course. Because modern liberals must reserve the right to vitiate them


No. Because made up ideas don't exist outside of the making up of them, and they only hold sway in the presence of a power and authority with the will to defend them against other competing made up ideas and schemes.

You have no more "natural rights" than you have a "soul." The former is just the secularization of the latter.
   5271. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:59 PM (#4222773)
Previous to this century, a woman's uterus was the property of whatever man had a claim on her (father or husband), as was the fetus growing there.

No it wasn't.
   5272. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 02:59 PM (#4222774)
Yes. Antebellum southern blacks had the right not to be enslaved.


This is a religious belief, not a rational or reasoned point.
   5273. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:01 PM (#4222775)
That's just a milder subset of the "aliens will kill everyone and despoil Mother Earth forevermore, but won't if we execute one person," and you came out the other way.

No it's not.

The parallel would be for us to threaten to nuke the aliens cities to persuade them to leave us alone.

Killing enemy civilians is different from killing your own.
   5274. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:01 PM (#4222776)
Rights are not inate. They're contingent.

Of course. Because modern liberals must reserve the right to vitiate them.

But we already knew that.


I'd be curious to know where you stand on immigration, given your theses about rights and government. Without 'rights' springing from the government, why can't Jose cross an imaginary line whenever he damn well pleases, perform all manner of reasonable activity -- from working to playing to reproducing to sitting on a public park bench?

Is it because only some people get these natural rights and only in certain places?
   5275. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:02 PM (#4222777)
Killing enemy civilians is different from killing your own.


Because the enemy civilians worship the wrong gods?! This makes no sense.
   5276. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:03 PM (#4222778)
Yes. Antebellum southern blacks had the right not to be enslaved.


This is a religious belief, not a rational or reasoned point.


And this is when Sam gets accused of supporting slavery. I have seen this movie before and it did not end well.
   5277. Döner Kebap Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:03 PM (#4222779)
Yes. Antebellum southern blacks had the right not to be enslaved.


They most certainly did not. They had neither some ephemeral, innate right, nor a codified right. It took violent conflict and a federal government overreach to extend them that right.

You should review the bible's position on slavery if you want to argue that. It was a big part of the south's justification for owning people. If slaves had a right to freedom handed to them from God, someone forgot to tell the folks who wrote the bible.
   5278. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:03 PM (#4222780)
I'm splitting hairs because I don't honestly see a less abhorrent option.


I'm with Snapper regarding August 1945- all you had were bad options, horrific options, Truman's decision- as horrific as it was, was actually bone of, if not the least horrific option available.

1. Declare victory and go home? Really, seriously? you were just going to pack up and let a military which had done the following stay in control of an industrialized nation of 100 million:
a. Assassinated just about very civilian prime minister who served in the 1930s
b. Invaded and occupied many neighboring nations, used their populations as slave labor, and killed POWs on a mass scale
c. Which military didn't even want to surrender AFTER the nuclear bombings?

That was tried in WWI, the only change in Germany's governing structure was that the Kaiser was run off.

2. Continue the blockade - ok, unlike #1, this one would have worked- eventually- at far greater cost in human life- or maybe it doesn't work- Japan simply collapses like Somalia in the 1990s, either way- worse option than the bomb

3. Operation Downfall- the Battle of Okinawa cost about 250-300K dead (all sides), phase one of Operation Downfall- you can multiply that by 5.

Do you know how many people died in the Battle of Berlin (all sides, civilian and military)- many times the number who died at Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined, not to speak about what happened afterwards?

All of WWII was one giant war crime- but you want a crime analogy? The innocent we killed were more like the bystanders who got shot by the police outside the Empire State Building last week, the aggressor nations were more like that Jeff Johnson guy who cold bloodedly murdered his former co-worker.

   5279. Döner Kebap Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4222782)
Previous to this century, a woman's uterus was the property of whatever man had a claim on her (father or husband), as was the fetus growing there.

No it wasn't.


Yes it was.

I win!
   5280. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4222783)
Killing enemy civilians is different from killing your own.


Killing an innocent is killing an innocent. They are both civilians.

So if the hypothetical was the aliens handed over an innocent alien civilian and said unless you kill this innocent we will destroy your world - you would be OK with killing the innocent alien?
   5281. clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:07 PM (#4222784)
While I'm sure the particulars of snapper's position have been mischaracterized many times over by now, it is interesting to see that he is willing to grant many "moral" exceptions to "pro-life" stance outside of abortion.
well, it's perfectly consistent with the christianist belief that life begins at (or 2 weeks before) conception, and concern for it ends after birth.

it seems to me that christianists believe that the unborn are pure and are therefore deserving of the greatest protection, whereas people who are alive are all sinners, and are therefore deserving of whatever ills befall them.

   5282. SteveF Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:07 PM (#4222785)
It took violent conflict and a federal government overreach to extend them that right.


Why do you suppose people felt that those were 'rights' worth fighting for? It seems like a lot of work.
   5283. Joe Kehoskie Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:07 PM (#4222787)
Hey, 'zonk,' did you miss #5222 or are you intentionally ignoring it?
   5284. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:09 PM (#4222789)
Killing an innocent is killing an innocent. They are both civilians.

No. A country has a greater duty to protect its own people than those of the enemy.
   5285. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:09 PM (#4222790)
Why do you suppose people felt that those were 'rights' worth fighting for? It seems like a lot of work.


A bunch of reasons. I forsee a dip into what the Civil War was "really" fought over, so I won't go farther.
   5286. Steve Treder Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:10 PM (#4222792)
So, how about this?

This is on that noted liberally-biased site, Foxnews.com:

to anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to facts, Ryan’s speech was an apparent attempt to set the world record for the greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech. On this measure, while it was Romney who ran the Olympics, Ryan earned the gold.


   5287. Bitter Mouse Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:10 PM (#4222794)
No. A country has a greater duty to protect its own people than those of the enemy.


The country may (or not), but the base morality of the action doesn't revolve around the citizenship of the victim does it?

EDIT: Besides we were talking about an individuals action (I thought). Does an individual have to take into account the nationality of the victim when assessing the morality of their action? Ferd with a gun is moral for killing the alien innocent but not the Canadian innocent?
   5288. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:11 PM (#4222796)
Does a right exist if it's not secured and enforced?

Yes. Antebellum southern blacks had the right not to be enslaved.


But they were.

Plenty were born into slavery and died under it. It wasn't happenstance - it happened, it happened to all of them, and nothing short of a bayonet and law change ended it.

So what did it matter?
   5289. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:13 PM (#4222800)
Killing an innocent is killing an innocent. They are both civilians.

So if the hypothetical was the aliens handed over an innocent alien civilian and said unless you kill this innocent we will destroy your world - you would be OK with killing the innocent alien?


No, but I'd be OK bombing the #### out of the aliens' planet to stop them destroying ours, even if lots of their civilians would die as a result.
   5290. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:14 PM (#4222801)
I don't see where killing one to save billions is wrong, but killing 100,000 to save millions is OK.


Speaking for myself, I never said that, and I don't claim to know all the answers (ok sometimes I do, but this is not one of them)

As the one who threw out the Alien question, I find these questions to be both fascinating and disconcerting, how do you answer them? How do people in the real world answer them?

I have two young children, let's say one is sick, it's curable, but the guy who has the cure won't let me have it, won't even sell it to me, what do I do? Do I break into his house and steal it? If I did would that be "wrong?"

In that last hypothetical, my opinion, the guy who has the cure, but won't share? I do not see how it could be immoral for the parent in that scenario to steal from him- even kill him, but OTOH from a larger societal good POV, as reprehensible a person the guy with the cure may be- can it really afford to let parents do that?

   5291. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:14 PM (#4222802)
They most certainly did not. They had neither some ephemeral, innate right, nor a codified right.
They had the rights they themselves claimed. They had the rights which were promulgated and defended in the wide trans-atlantic anti-slavery movement. These rights were denied them by other people, by slaveowners, by the governments that protected slaveowners.

I have a problem with the suggestion that slaves were were wrong to claim their own rights, and that the anti-slavery movement was lying when they claimed rights for enslaved persons. A proleptic claim to rights is the most powerful kind. Rights claims are about imagining and acting toward a better future.
   5292. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:14 PM (#4222803)
No. A country has a greater duty to protect its own people than those of the enemy.


So, morality is conditional and not absolute now? Maybe now we're getting somewhere.
   5293. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:16 PM (#4222804)
All of WWII was one giant war crime- but you want a crime analogy? The innocent we killed were more like the bystanders who got shot by the police outside the Empire State Building last week, the aggressor nations were more like that Jeff Johnson guy who cold bloodedly murdered his former co-worker.

I think that's a pretty good parallel.
   5294. clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:17 PM (#4222805)
In that last hypothetical, my opinion, the guy who has the cure, but won't share? I do not see how it could be immoral for the parent in that scenario to steal from him- even kill him, but OTOH from a larger societal good POV, as reprehensible a person the guy with the cure may be- can it really afford to let parents do that?
yes.

but our nation's laws tend to be focused more on easing an individual's plight, rather than the advancing the greater good of the society.
   5295. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:19 PM (#4222811)
So, morality is conditional and not absolute now? Maybe now we're getting somewhere.

There are different degrees of moral responsibility.

You have an absolute responsibility to feed your children. You have a lesser responsibility to feed the poor. You need to help feed some of them, according to your means.

But are not required to use every spare dollar to feed the poor. If your child is hungry, you are required to sell your TV to feed them. You are not required to sell your TV to feed non-related people.
   5296. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:21 PM (#4222815)
WRT WWII and the atom bombs: They started it, and we finished it.

There were thousands of unspeakable actions that took place during that war, including Hiroshima and Nagasaki, not to mention Tokyo and Dresden, which were morally unforgivable if you consider them independently. But the bottom line is that no leader is going to sacrifice his own countrymen's lives in order to save those of the enemy, no matter how it plays in divinity school. Maybe they would in a war game, but not here on Earth, and certainly not when they took a look at the casualties they'd suffered while island hopping and projecting those casualties onto an invasion of the Japanese mainland.
   5297. Döner Kebap Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:21 PM (#4222817)
Why do you suppose people felt that those were 'rights' worth fighting for? It seems like a lot of work.


I, of course, believe in a set of universal human rights. I just don't think they're fixed, innate, or separate from the will of the people to protect them. It's entirely possible that our current sense of human rights will look despotic and cruel to future generations. As power is dispersed and people become more empathetic, our notion of human rights expands.

####, "dignity" is a right in the German constitution. Dignity. Look it up. Now think about the extent to which we protect the dignity of our fellow citizens around here and tell me if rights are innate or endowed by a creator. Or ask a republican where his right to free speech ends and someone else's right to dignity begins.
   5298. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4222818)
I have two young children, let's say one is sick, it's curable, but the guy who has the cure won't let me have it, won't even sell it to me, what do I do? Do I break into his house and steal it? If I did would that be "wrong?"

In that last hypothetical, my opinion, the guy who has the cure, but won't share? I do not see how it could be immoral for the parent in that scenario to steal from him- even kill him, but OTOH from a larger societal good POV, as reprehensible a person the guy with the cure may be- can it really afford to let parents do that?


You can morally steal it from him (assuming he has excess, i.e. he doesn't need it to cure his child), but you can't kill him. This is an old moral case; the starving man can morally steal from those who have excess.
   5299. zonk Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:25 PM (#4222822)
Can someone list for me these 'natural' rights -- even incomplete?

I'd like to have a point of reference, especially in regards to something like immigration.
   5300. SteveF Posted: August 30, 2012 at 03:27 PM (#4222823)
I just don't think they're fixed, innate, or separate from the will of the people to protect them.


What's the will of the people a product of? Power dispersal? Empathy levels? How do we choose which rights we want? Are there any similarities among the rights people want from country to country? Why do such similarities exist (assuming they exist)?
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