Comic Talk and General Discussion

The US Election
ayesinback at 6:36AM, Nov. 15, 2016
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@Kim - I confess I don't know enough about immigration/illegal immigration to come out and just “of course” your question, but on the surface it seems like an “of course.”

Although I personally know a girl who had believed she was a citizen all her life, a bright, industrious, model student, who lost her full college scholarship and was facing possible deportation when she applied for an internship that required a full background check.

@bravo - Thank you for the U.S. political history review. I may need to copy it (with due credit) when I try to convince people that our two-party system is so convoluted, if not outright corrupt, that our only choice to regain a government of/by/for the people is to work towards the creation of at least one more valid party.

Btw, I attribute the continual morphing of political stance to modern media. Compare yesterday's fairly unbiased, Cronkite-like journalism to the pick-and-choose CNN coverage, where pollster results are extrapolated to inform both potential ratings opportunities and, simultaneously, political policy. As much as freedom of speech is a double-edged sword, the contemplation of a “free press” can blow one's mind. Last not least, there's the phenom of social networking that enabled Sanders to have a swing at it. I can't imagine what the race will look like in 4 years.

All right, so we need a viable third party (or more) after we need to maintain the freedom of the internet. And candidates that accept the scientifically-corroborated fact of climate change. We need that, too. And enforcing the gun control regulations already on the books. Important. And …
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ozoneocean at 9:23AM, Nov. 15, 2016
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The democrats not wanting any conservative ideas?

Bravo, the left wing in the US is what is considered centre right in other countries. And the right wing is VERY, VERY right wing compared to other nations. The US as a whole is a very right leaning country, a classical example of it. In every aspect.
Yes, even the media.

Your media is more partisan than it should be, but it's not overly “left”. You have right-wing media, left-wing media, and media that has so called “pundits” who favour both sides.

One of the main problems is that conservative people often gravitate towards ideas that interfere with social rights of the individual (eg abortion, gay rights etc), they mix church and state, and they let their simple nationalism and short term thinking cloud their ideas on climate change and environmental regulation- Not ALL conservative people have those biases, but enough of them do that when the press rightly criticises these positions and those who support them they are wrongly thought of as supporting the left wing when in reality they're just criticising stupid ideas.
 
ayesinback at 9:52AM, Nov. 15, 2016
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ozoneocean wrote:
when the press rightly criticises these positions and those who support them they are wrongly thought of as supporting the left wing when in reality they're just criticising stupid ideas.

That's fine in editorials and opine pieces, but we have gotten to the point that that no one even tries to objectively report facts, or to provide a counterbalance when A propones this, and B advocates that. It is becoming incredibly difficult to self-educate or educate when many people adhere to the first “reports” they read.
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fallopiancrusader at 10:45AM, Nov. 15, 2016
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I think the current state of the U.S. media is a big problem. The budgets for real, professional journalism are being gutted, and many reputable papers are either going out of business, or becoming partisan. Sometimes it seems that most current events reporting is being relegated to all sorts of semi-objective internet groups that cater exclusively to audiences who already live in their own respective conservative or liberal bubbles.

Does anybody here have any recommendations for what they consider a reputable and circumspect source of current events? For the past year, I have limited my news reading to AlJazeera and Der Spiegel, but I wonder if there are other sources out there that people on this site consider worthwhile.
bravo1102 at 7:41PM, Nov. 15, 2016
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After years of study. I concluded that objective news reporting was an illusion. It is a wonderful ideal. It only really exists when a nation is United in purpose or by an authoritarian government.

Most journalists choose that profession because they feel they.have something to say. They often have a desire to change the world in the same way as every person with access to a printing press has. The modern journalist is merely another in a long line of reporters who give you the events in order to convince you to think like them.

In the 19th Century the most common prior occupation of a politician was newspaper publisher. For every Walter Cronkite reporter there is always an Edward R. Murrow investigator. That's what Freedom of the press means. The press wasn't expected to observe and report, but to report and persuade and all sides had to have their say without the government picking sides.

And yes, outside of a Muslim country, the US is the most conservative and anti-intellectual society. I reference many different studies and polls. But then it seems for a powerful nation, domestic conservatism is the standard. Too liberal and the people put themselves on the dole and everyone else walks all over you unless there is a conservative culture willing to take care of all the unpleasant business of state craft for the liberal masses enjoying socialist largesse. But then I have been reading a lot about Rome lately.

And I fear the American people just elected Julius Caesar consul.
last edited on Nov. 15, 2016 7:45PM
bravo1102 at 10:07PM, Nov. 15, 2016
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Political terminology is relative. Most of the time the most.accurate description of a position is one in relation to another position. And the the spectrum of left and right is a snake eating its own tail.

The French Revolution where the terms originated with seating arrangements of the assembly illustrated this. The Jacobins were the most radical left and in defense of the Revolution circled around back to very conservative views.

And then it came full circle as in Rome to an authoritarian dictatorship with extremely liberal views on economy and society. Napoleon as First Consul is remembered for his great liberal reform of European law. Something that at the time inspired the progressive thinkers of the time. Then he just had to make himself emperor to inspire the people and satisfy.his ego.

Honestly I have no idea what I am talking about. The comic Assassination of Franz Ferdinand updated again and I was thinking again. Bad habit.
ayesinback at 7:10AM, Nov. 16, 2016
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There is a certain comfort that 100 proof cynicism offers, and it's not necessarily an inaccurate perspective, but other perspectives help complete the picture. Just as science strives for pure fact, at one time journalism did also. Both pursuits are ideals that succeed only in the hands of ethical masters (yes, a bit hyperbolic, but then we're balancing on the word ideal).

I have one of my degrees in mass communications, so I've studied the topic, too, and it's been a long time interest. As you depicted, generally my classmates were either Murrow curious or with a Cronkite desire to inform. One class specifically studied the ethics of journalism, and took an analytic view of Hurst publications, Pulitzer, 60 Minutes, and so on, including speculations about newborn CNN.

My other degree was in business, and the curriculum included marketing classes, where one prof was a diehard McLuhan devotee. Here is where I and others learned to tint a picture.

They, marketing and journalism, were two distinct studies in two different schools. Both involved research, but one shaped facts (the business, number-based one) and one didn't.

What I now observe is a “journalism” so tainted with marketing, if not unadulterated luridness, that you'd have to go back to Teddy Roosevelt's administration to match the yellow.

We live in an age of marketing and manipulation, and have so for a few generations – but not to the wallowing it has insidiously grown to become today. More and more people are waking up to this fact, led by the Millennials who have only experienced first-hand our present morass.

Which means, even with Trump in office, I am hopeful. More of us are beginning to see with fewer filters, and there might be enough passion that we can do some fixing, but Only if we can stop being passionate about individual viewpoints and unite for a common improvement. It would be easier if Trump were on our side, but it's not impossible despite him.
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bravo1102 at 5:00PM, Nov. 16, 2016
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Trump is a deal making huckster. Notice how his demeanor practically flipped once he won the election? (sealed the deal)

And now he's back pedaling on his promises? The wall will become a fence, the mass deportation will become following the existing laws regarding immigrant felons and the haters will fade back into the dark corners they came out from. “Stop it!,

And our political system will work exactly the way it was designed to and stop another Caesar from crossing the Rubicon and becoming dictator.

And the right will have its own way for a few years rolling back executive orders that should never have made in the first place. For someone who was in office eight years Obama didn't do a whole lot that couldn't be undone with a signature as opposed to actually going to Congress. His rhetorical house of Cards was already beginning to fall in on itself. Obama was all potential and no product. His legacy will be some great speeches and winning a Nobel prize merely for being elected. He could have done a lot more than complain about previous presidents. He was a great intellect that failed the test of leadership. Eight years ago Rush Limbaugh said ”I hope he fails"and Obama just had to go and prove him right. Sad.

And weren't we warned that a reality show star would become president in the movie Idiocracy?

Cynicism does provide comfort. And maybe it will be a lot worse, or least the media will paint it that way.
last edited on Nov. 16, 2016 5:07PM
ozoneocean at 8:17PM, Nov. 16, 2016
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Bravo it's important to remember that “liberalism” is not a blanket term for one set of political values.
Case in point: the Australian Liberal party is so named because of the classical use of that word referring to economic liberalism.

Economic liberalism is what the right wing gravitates towards.
The left is economically conservative while being socially liberal, the right is the converse.
These the simplest way to put it.

Neither manages the economy better because of some good trait in their political DNA. Right wing conservatives get countries into disastrous debt just as much as anyone else.
The main difference is that their interests lie in aggressive foreign policy, helping those with resources at the expense of everyone else: helping certain individuals in order to make society better for them and hoping that they will spread their largess to the rest of the population.
While classically the priority of the left is social services: helping everyone in order to make our society better for all of us.
 
bravo1102 at 9:12PM, Nov. 16, 2016
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Thank you for making clear what I was trying to say. The right and left have used liberalism as they have seen fit. On person and government can do all kinds of things fitting both definitions as befits the government's interest. See all the liberal parties in Europe lining up for war in 1914. Of course liberals are against such things. A Europe ruled by social progressive liberal governments could never go to war! Couple of really good books on the topic came out for the centennial. One can only truly understand the present through careful examination of the past. And there's more to the past than Nazi Germany.


Liberal and conservative views often co-exist in one person. People and governments are very good at holding several seemingly contradictory views at the same time.

Nah, I should stop talking politics. Some people act like their hair is on fire, worrying and screaming and running around pointlessly rather than simply reaching for a fire extinguisher.

A friend did a comic about it. One guy was wandering aimlessly in his pajamas, frantically looking for coffee. The other was dressed, showered and calmly handing him a coffee cup the the first in his aimless frenzy didn't see.

And something very similar is occurring over this election with that same person. I tried explaining the Constitution and Supreme Court to him but he still.thinks that gay marriage and abortion will vanish in a Trump administration. Then I came across several articles by experts in constitutional law who said all the same things that I had. I don't pull this stuff out of the air. Peopld only believe and listen to what they want to hear.


last edited on Nov. 16, 2016 9:18PM
lba at 9:31PM, Nov. 25, 2016
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In some ways, I agree with Bravo. Without recapping the whole conversation, I fully agree that the American institution will continue on, much as it has for the last 200 years, because Donald Trump is extreme, but so have many other things our country's history been and for the most part someone stopped them cold of the “logical solution”. In other ways, I disagree, because I see a country of idiots, willing to tear themselves apart over their own imagined fears, anxieties and hatred, system be damned, because it's not their system.

I've been abroad enough to know that America is conservative compared to large parts of the world, but is insanely liberal compared to others. My time in Kuwait was one of quite literally threatening local cops and men with implied intimidation and violence to stop them from harassing my female Soldiers ( including them trying to proposition my Soldiers for sex, because they thought women walking without a man were automatically whores. ) on and near our base, while the time I spent in Italy saw them asking me why we were so against immigration and equal rights. My college degree in illustration taught me to hate and despise marketing and business majors as people who would happily gut a message and string what was left of it over their selling points.

I think things are becoming more volatile in America. I think that's a sign of America's waning power on the world stage, because from what I've learned in history class, most of the other big powers throughout history, from the Spanish and British Empires, to the Chinese Dynasties saw some of the same strife and arguing in their waning periods. I think it's entirely normal and frankly OK. It happens to all countries. It's just a matter of grace.

Truth be told, maybe I'm just cynical as all hell, because I've been playing copper too long, but all I see is the same old couple tribes of monkeys hurling rock and screeching over who gets the best tree. Anymore, I see the old conflict of “this monkey has power; the monkey he took it from doesn't like it; noise ensues.” It'll all come back around when a new monkey who isn't quite strong enough anymore allies himself with the old monkey to overtake the current monkey; and the system will go on. We just need to make sure that the little monkeys who aren't quite strong enough to do for themselves don't get turned into leopard food in the process and maybe see if we can get the leopard to change his shorts and stop eating monkeys while we're at it.
kyupol at 6:12AM, Dec. 1, 2016
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Trump is far from being blameless and righteous before God…

But he's a step in the right direction. This is either the beginning of an upward direction or a temporary delay in an eventual downward spiral of society…

Wait and see… :)
NOW UPDATING!!!
ozoneocean at 12:11AM, Dec. 2, 2016
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kyupol wrote:
But he's a step in the right direction.
A step towards total failure.
He's just a conman, as many ultra-rich are. Dangerously stupid though.

Managing business gives idiots like him a huge safety-net. If something goes wrong it's only his investors that suffer, he goes on scott free with their money and uses it to con more investors.
But as the president of an entire country the consequences of his foolishness can cost lives and trillions of dollars of not only US citizens but those all around the world.


My prediction is that the first (and hopefully only) term of Trump will see a massive investment bubble, with rampant investing, huge stock market values, with nothing at all behind it so that the crash when it comes will be very, very harsh.
So if that happens and the stock market seems deceptively good- invest quickly, make your money while you can but DO NOT stay for the ride or you will be very sorry.
 
bravo1102 at 1:38AM, Dec. 2, 2016
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Can you say Panic of 1837?

Or it could be boom economy like that brought on by JFK tax cuts in the early 1960s. They created a nation so wealthy it could send men to the moon, fight a war in Southeast Asia and fund massive social welfare programs all at once. That's what a few prominent economists are predicting.

But of course we know better don't we? After all the world is unliveable with a huge population and no ice caps and runaway inflation and no oil and Soviet union more powerful than ever just like all the good liberals predicted 40 years ago. Except there was that idiot Reagan who ruined the end of the world for everyone. Trump will probably ruin all the end of times forecasts again. They always do. If there is a boom, there will be a bust. There usually is.

Trump could the greatest.disaster as president since James Buchanan or another TR as Kissenger is pushing for him to be. He won't be Obama or Clinton so we'll have to see how the hand plays out.

But Australia will have to learn Cantonese when China annexes the South China Sea. Or would you prefer adaptation of Sharia law as part of a Greater Asian Caliphate?

Political forecasts aren't my Forte either. I predicted the first black president in 2000 as Colin Powell. I only record history, not predict it.
last edited on Dec. 2, 2016 1:50AM
ozoneocean at 4:59AM, Dec. 2, 2016
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The will never be a greater Asian caliphate man XD
Muslim countries hate each other more than they hate other nations.
China could try invading this far south but it'd just be a massive ongoing war, since none of the Asian countries between us and them would acquiesce quietly and would probably join us on our soil.
More like Australia would become part of a southern Asian federation with Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, etc plus New Zealand.

But the Trump prediction is pretty damn solid really. Nothing poor about that. The world is not as it was I the mid 1800s, in the 60s or the 80s. The US has no big bogeyman to temper it's ambition and make it cautious anymore. Information moves faster than ever and we're seeing a lot of boom and bust cycles due to crazy speculation in the financial sector.
He's already selected a joke of a cabinet, the writing is on the wall.
 
last edited on Dec. 2, 2016 7:39AM
kawaiidaigakusei at 5:51AM, Dec. 2, 2016
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I will tell you what is horrifying-

I was teaching an eighth grade math class yesterday when three blonde haired children, two girls and one boy, raised their arms in a sieg heil salute in unison. This type of message should not be in our schools and it is troubling.

If anyone listened to Trump's speech in Cincinnatti yesterday, then you would have heard that his country is going to be an inclusive society. It is “all about America, America, America.” Welcome back American Isolationism, it has been about 80 years.
P
bravo1102 at 8:44AM, Dec. 2, 2016
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My middle school friends and I were exchanging Heil Hitler salutes all the time. But that was a more innocent time because we all watched Hogan's Heroes and Monty Python. I routinely goose stepped and even celebrated the 40th birthday of the Tiger tank. Kids do silly stuff that adults freak out at because they want to freak adults out. Especially middle schoolers. So you just point out how inappropriate that behavior is but don't freak out. Were they arcing their arm across the chest before putting it up rigidly? That's actually Roman salute as adopted by the Fascists not the Nazi one. By making that kind of distinction you are disarming the child's behavior not reinforcing it by freaking out. That's why school psychologists loved me back in the day. Stop shocking behavior by acknowledging it, dissection and moving on. Maybe make them watch Der Fuehrer's Face or a wartime Bugs Bunny cartoon. Mel Brooks ridicules the Nazis while acknowledging the evil. That way the kids learn how ridiculous the behavior is and move on.

The comparison of Trumpism to Lindbergh and America First was made in the New Yorker magazine. While compelling I didn't find it particularly convincing. What precisely is the US isolating itself from? Trump will be engaging the Chinese and Russians as well as radical Islam and his choice of Secdef is a respected military leader in the best Patton mode. The kind of reading general who knows good hyperbole from foolish saber rattling. The kind of guy who can disarm behavior others find shocking and move on towards their goals. Semper fi Mac.


We're all making wild ass guesses based on our worst fears. The kind of catastrophizing I was alluding to with my remarks about the 1970s predictions of doom and gloom. The US electorate is reinforcing failure by reelecting two first term failures. In a row. No matter who was elected in 2016 the American people lost. There is a glimmer of hope in the proposed pro growth policy of a Trump administration so I will wait and see. But I am not holding my breath. Could be a Trump bubble and the economy tumbles from a false spurt of growth and the American people turn Congress back over to the Democrats and disarm Trump. Never know.
last edited on Dec. 2, 2016 8:53AM
ayesinback at 11:47AM, Dec. 2, 2016
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Just a little more than two weeks have passed since my last declaration of hope, and my perspective has shifted.

I admit I have to do some reading up since I am in a “social bubble,” but most of what I've read about Trump's appointments is scary. An “alt-right” supporter, a “pesticides don't harm people” climate skeptic, a proponent of conversion therapy, a hedge fund manager, an anti-abortion-but-don't-fund-birth-control budget master (I wonder his thoughts on Viagra) …

So aside from breitbart.com, where does one look to learn about how these people will improve the U.S.?
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bravo1102 at 11:28PM, Dec. 2, 2016
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ayesinback wrote:
Just a little more than two weeks have passed since my last declaration of hope, and my perspective has shifted.

I admit I have to do some reading up since I am in a “social bubble,” but most of what I've read about Trump's appointments is scary. An “alt-right” supporter, a “pesticides don't harm people” climate skeptic, a proponent of conversion therapy, a hedge fund manager, an anti-abortion-but-don't-fund-birth-control budget master (I wonder his thoughts on Viagra) …

So aside from breitbart.com, where does one look to learn about how these people will improve the U.S.?

And now you know the fear and disgust the right felt about Obama's cabinet. Don't worry they are the most vile and evil collection of monsters ever assembled in one place. One's mind boggles at the hyperbole spun about a few off hand comments or unwanted association. I remember reams of such dubious connections in 2008 but since they were people who were more in line with my political thinking, I didn't mind so much. But the opposite side is full of heretics and demons. When did politics become a struggle of dogma versus heresy? All good liberals, I call for a crusade onto the heretics of the right. Such wrong thinking must be rooted out of the body politic and destroyed.

Listen to yourselves oh great progressives and be amazed that you sound like the forces of the Inquisition and the conservatives sound like the free thinkers of the Renaissance. Let your voices be heard in this free Republic and let the system rein in the wild horses of demagogues.

I love the free exchange of ideas and opinions and marvel at this Republic created by the Constitution of these United States. The system will prevail over whatever fools the people elect and their crony hangers-on.

Wonder where I can get a nice early 19th century suit. I feel like Henry Clay or Daniel Webster facing down Andrew Jackson and John C. Calhoun.
ayesinback at 5:41AM, Dec. 3, 2016
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bravo1102 wrote



The system will prevail over whatever fools the people elect and their crony hangers-on.


Ah huh
You TOO can be (multiple choice)
last edited on Dec. 3, 2016 5:42AM
bravo1102 at 1:02PM, Dec. 3, 2016
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Now I need to shut up and get back to producing a comic. I've wasted enough time on this foolish hair wringing and running about. There's work to be done.
ayesinback at 4:31PM, Dec. 3, 2016
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bravo1102 wrote:

I suppose you would prefer Tiananmen square or the Draft Riots of 1863 dispersed by the soldiers fresh from Gettysburg or the Hay market riots or Napoleon's whiff of grapeshot mowing down the multitude to maintain order?

Excuse me? I thought Animal House did an admirable job of showing how silly panic-in-the-streets looks, especially when it occurs over something that is not life threatening. I advocate for neither panic nor martial law. You suppose quite a bit.
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bravo1102 at 4:00AM, Dec. 4, 2016
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ayesinback wrote:
bravo1102 wrote:

I suppose you would prefer Tienanmen square or the Draft Riots of 1863 dispersed by the soldiers fresh from Gettysburg or the Hay market riots or Napoleon's whiff of grapeshot mowing down the multitude to maintain order?

Excuse me? I thought Animal House did an admirable job of showing how silly panic-in-the-streets looks, especially when it occurs over something that is not life threatening. I advocate for neither panic nor martial law. You suppose quite a bit.

The whole image of the poor ROTC cadet yelling “remain calm” before getting run down just got to me. I imagined I was the poor idiot saying we should all be calm as the wave of Trumpist fascism surged over us all.
last edited on Dec. 4, 2016 4:05AM

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