South African Skeptics

Trump

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Offline Tweefo

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How the hell can anybody, who is doing the best he can to derail his campaign, be still in the race? He's pissed off the Latinos, whomen, war vets and anybody who is proud of his hair. Not only still in the race but actually gaining? The bigger question, of course, is what will the world be like if he managed to become the president? The Americans are sometimes nutty enough to let him do just that. A bit like us voting Zuma in.
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Offline Faerie

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He is arrogant and he is stupendously wealthy - two things the Americans admire above anything else. I would not be surprised if he got voted in. What the world would look like after his first term I dont want to even contemplate, he'd bomb whatever he considers a threat. The man doesnt possess an inkling of compassion or sense of fair play.


Offline BoogieMonster

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The voted in Bush, who believed he was god's instrument against the unbelievers... and that spawned multiple wars. So I don't think this all that theoretical at all.

What can go wrong? Nuclear armageddon.



"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline brianvds

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The man's a complete buffoon, meaning he'll stand a good chance of getting at least half the vote. :-)

Still, having such a man as prez fora term or two sometimes does a nation a lot of good, in that they learn a hard lesson in being more careful about whom you vote for. My condolences though to the families of everyone he's going to bomb.


Offline BoogieMonster

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You're assuming SA doesn't do something mildly irritating to him personally and he doesn't decide to bomb US.
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline Faerie

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My first thought was that it might be doing us a favour....  :(


Offline Brian

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Back to Trump the Chump: I have a different take on this idiot...he knows how to play to the crowds and TV and they love him for that but when and if he becomes Prez he'll sing a totally different tune with special advisors backing him. He's never been in politics and will bring business acumen to the White House which is not a bad thing. However much will depend on him being less of an arrogant clown.
Never let the child in you die!


Offline Faerie

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He's a wet fish. Flip flopping between and around issues. From a female perspective he's a disaster waiting to happen. The man will erode the little bit of rights women have over their bodies and prospects in that country, ditto the minorities.


Offline Majin

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Back to Trump the Chump: I have a different take on this idiot...he knows how to play to the crowds and TV and they love him for that but when and if he becomes Prez he'll sing a totally different tune with special advisors backing him. He's never been in politics and will bring business acumen to the White House which is not a bad thing. However much will depend on him being less of an arrogant clown.

I don't think he will really bring business acumen seeing as he isn't such a great business man to begin with. He got most of his money from Daddy, and even messed that up at times. Trump is just a name.
http://opinion.injo.com/2015/09/247749-donald-trump-is-a-mediocre-businessman-and-his-record-proves-it/

Besides I think he will make the rich only richer and the poor poorer. Sooner or later we are going to have something like a "french revolution" again because issues aren't solved.


Offline BoogieMonster

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Agreed with Majin, he's an arrogant ass who thinks he walks on water despite being relatively sucky at business for a supposed billionaire. His statements and attitudes betray that he's not much of a deep thinker. Whether the US prez really holds the power to erode anyone's rights is debatable. I think often politicians make promises knowing full well there are multiple layers of government preventing exactly what they're promising.

Plausible Deniability. "Oh I didn't expect it'd be so hard to deport an entire class of people. #WhoKnew?"
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline Majin

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The guy playing "devil advocate." Someone is finally asking trump some hard questions.
Imo it doesn't matter if the reporter baited him, he still gave a stupid answer.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvmseaBPgmE


Offline Mefiante

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"Sensitive" people are now carefully examining the entire universe, trying to find something to be "offended" at. It won't stop until such time as the "offenders" learn to stop apologizing, and saying "freck off" instead. — brianvds, The ShoutBox Classics, 02/07/2018.


Offline BoogieMonster

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These attitudes of "they have to be stupid and/or insane" towards Trump supporters is a part of what's got them all riled up. Tell someone they "disagree with you because they're stupid" long enough and they may just believe you: Not.

All they hear is a cathedral saying "Trust us all ye worthless masses, let us deliver you from your own ignorance". And such a stance is never going to go down well. This is why Trump Exists. He's the Nirvana of politics: There to play the discontent, a vehicle for anger with the status quo. The latter bit of the article is actually the most accurate: It's a middle finger to the establishment more than it is actual support of Trump.

Call me stupid and/or crazy, but I do kinda see the point: We can't trust trump, sure, but can we trust Hillary? He may engage in a war or two, but what recent president hasn't? etc. I do have a citation, from the very mouth of a Trump supporter.

This reminds me of Marilyn Manson's reply to a reporter asking him what he would've told the kids who committed the Columbine massacre. He simply replied: "I would've listened to them". This is the mental inversion the larger world needs to realize: To keep calling Trump supporters idiots, despite how one may feel, has so far been entirely counter-productive. It has about as much effect as calling Nirvana fans "washouts" or teenagers "potheads": It merely strengthens their resolve. All they really want is to make a point so big that nobody can miss it: "It's time to listen to us". I wish a lot of talking heads would realise this, and have an earnest conversation about the problems with politics. Instead everyone's hands are on the same wheel steering us towards an abyss.

The problem I personally have is, a lot of the PC stuff they're against, I'm also against. Trump may be a massively stupid overreaction, but that's the reaction, and it may be more productive to accept that without invoking prejudice so that the real problem can be addressed.

I do not hope Trump wins, but in my disagreement, I can understand.
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline brianvds

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These attitudes of "they have to be stupid and/or insane" towards Trump supporters is a part of what's got them all riled up. Tell someone they "disagree with you because they're stupid" long enough and they may just believe you: Not.

I have seen it argued that the thing that his supporters have in common is not stupidity or low education, but authoritarianism. I.e. they believe in a strong leader that tells other people what to do.

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Call me stupid and/or crazy, but I do kinda see the point: We can't trust trump, sure, but can we trust Hillary? He may engage in a war or two, but what recent president hasn't? etc.

Yup, there is actually preciously little to choose between the two - they are both far right wing authoritarians and warmongers. With her long experience, Hillary is likely a more effective and intelligent administrator, but that might actually make her a worse choice, as she'll be more effective in enforcing her agenda.

America is in for interesting times... :-)


Offline Mefiante

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The let’s-circle-the-wagons effect lies at the heart of all identity politics, so raising it in the context of the Trump phenomenon isn’t really any more enlightening than pointing out the fruitless mutual name-calling that characterises such politics.  There are local analogues aplenty.

What’s interesting is that the poles seem to be heftier than the middle.  What’s entirely uninteresting is that that rather vast middle (i.e., “middle” in US terms) is aligned mostly along its own historical allegiances: most Republicans will vote red and most Democrats will vote blue.  What would be as jaw-droppingly encouraging as it is unlikely to happen would be a US electorate that woke up to the realities it is facing and voted Independent.

Apart from that, the fact that the US’s sphere of influence on most of the rest of the world is vastly disproportionate to its actual presence and that the choice of its leader currently is between a psychopath and a village bully, should be deeply concerning to any thinking observer.  It’s the whole world that’s headed for “interesting times”, not just the US.

'Luthon64
"Sensitive" people are now carefully examining the entire universe, trying to find something to be "offended" at. It won't stop until such time as the "offenders" learn to stop apologizing, and saying "freck off" instead. — brianvds, The ShoutBox Classics, 02/07/2018.


Offline brianvds

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The let’s-circle-the-wagons effect lies at the heart of all identity politics, so raising it in the context of the Trump phenomenon isn’t really any more enlightening than pointing out the fruitless mutual name-calling that characterises such politics.  There are local analogues aplenty.

I think what makes Trump unusual is not so much what he says as that he seems to have so much support. As an American friend of mine says, America has lost its collective mind.

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What’s interesting is that the poles seem to be heftier than the middle.  What’s entirely uninteresting is that that rather vast middle (i.e., “middle” in US terms) is aligned mostly along its own historical allegiances: most Republicans will vote red and most Democrats will vote blue.  What would be as jaw-droppingly encouraging as it is unlikely to happen would be a US electorate that woke up to the realities it is facing and voted Independent.

Yup, but several things work against that. For one thing, America's system apparently pretty much ensures a two party system. Of course, it doesn't absolutely have to be the current two (which are essentially the same party anyway.) But people are so scared of Trump they tell me this election is too important to be the one in which they vote third party. They told me the same thing last election, and the one before it, and...

Every election, the same thing happens: on both sides, they see the other party's candidate as so scary that this election they just have to vote against him/her as an emergency measure; next election we'll all vote third party. This despite the fact that the U.S. president doesn't actually have all that much power, and America is a big dude and can survive two terms of Trump.

Another factor is that Hillary has successfully duped the traditional Democrat supporters into thinking she's the left wing candidate. In fact, just yesterday I had an American bloke tell me that I am wrong - Hillary is not right wing, she's the Democratic candidate and therefore she is by definition left wing. So yes, as you point out, they vote according to tradition and hardly even look at what their candidates are actually saying and doing and planning. Fact is, the current Democratic party has pretty much taken over the GOP's policies, while the latter has gone batshit crazy. Traditional right wingish voters should actually now support Hillary, and the leftish ones should vote for Stein.

But it won't happen this election because lots of votes for Stein will effectively ensure a Trump victory. Of course, it will also ensure that the Greens will have access to funding for the next election, and within a decade, the entire face of American politics will have shifted towards a more rational view. But voters don't think that far into the future; every election they vote tactically rather than on principle, because every election they go into panic mode about the opposing candidate.

Well, they richly deserve their leaders. They are one more reason why I have become determined that I'll sit out an election before I ever, ever again vote tactically rather than on principle. America neatly illustrates where tactical voting eventually leads. If the electorate has no principles, they can't really complain when their politicians don't have any either.

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Apart from that, the fact that the US’s sphere of influence on most of the rest of the world is vastly disproportionate to its actual presence and that the choice of its leader currently is between a psychopath and a village bully, should be deeply concerning to any thinking observer.  It’s the whole world that’s headed for “interesting times”, not just the US.

I fear you may be right - whichever of the two wins, we are headed for more war. Of course, this ultimately weakens them and their empire is slowly crumbling, and while one cannot help a bit of schadenfreude over that, the fact is that with America out of the way, it will be the Chinese who throw their weight around all over the world. We may live to long for the good old days when a few drone strikes in the Middle East were the worst of our worries about the world policeman...


Offline Mefiante

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"Sensitive" people are now carefully examining the entire universe, trying to find something to be "offended" at. It won't stop until such time as the "offenders" learn to stop apologizing, and saying "freck off" instead. — brianvds, The ShoutBox Classics, 02/07/2018.


Offline BoogieMonster

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.... would be a US electorate that woke up to the realities it is facing and voted Independent.

Hahahahahahahaha! *sobs uncontrollably* The world is red or blue, Gary who?
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline brianvds

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The US dilemma in a nutshell.

'Luthon64

Yup. Pretty much what I pointed out: the problem with Hillary is precisely that she is an able politician and administrator. When you have to begin hoping for an incompetent president rather than a competently corrupt one, you know you are in trouble.

Of course, around here we have the same problem. :-)


Offline BoogieMonster

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Uh yeah but if our politico's truly fucked up I could always jump ship to option #2. But Option #2 is starting to look worse and worse. Sigh, what's option #3 then? *ponders*
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline brianvds

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Uh yeah but if our politico's truly fucked up I could always jump ship to option #2. But Option #2 is starting to look worse and worse. Sigh, what's option #3 then? *ponders*

What would be your option #2 anyway?


Offline BoogieMonster

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Implied in my reply was that it was the USA. I know people there, tons of good quality of living, not perfect... but nothing is.
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline brianvds

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Implied in my reply was that it was the USA. I know people there, tons of good quality of living, not perfect... but nothing is.

Strikes me as a bit of a police state though...


Offline Faerie

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Yeah... It is likely the last place Id consider to run too. Far too restrictive imo. Not sure either where Id go though. I like my country...


Offline brianvds

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Yeah... It is likely the last place Id consider to run too. Far too restrictive imo. Not sure either where Id go though. I like my country...

For all its problems, South Africa is one of the freest places on the planet. Furthermore, a lot of the problems seem to be mostly the problem of a specific demographic, to which most of us here do not belong. Zuma's shenanigans are mostly harming his own supporters. As the government slowly melts down, its services are being taken over by the private sector. And which demographic is it that is now mostly taking over (and making a fortune out of) these services?

It's true that the jury is really still out on whether we're going to make it in the longer run. But then, not too long ago Syria was supposedly one of the most stable countries in the Middle East, and western Europe looked like one of the more tolerant places on earth. America had a healthy democracy. Now Syria has gone up in flames, the Europeans are practicing petty apartheid and America is about to elect one of two loony war mongers as president (almost overnight, their democracy has become a joke compared even to ours, considering the success of our recent municipal elections).

One cannot really predict the future. If Nassim Taleb's ideas have any validity, South Africa is actually far more stable than it appears on the surface.


Offline Rigil Kent

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Daar het nog niks dramaties genoeg gebeur om regtig 'n massa uittog te regverdig nie. Miskien word ons padda stelselmatig gekook.
You know it's cold outside when you go outside and it's cold.


Offline brianvds

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Daar het nog niks dramaties genoeg gebeur om regtig 'n massa uittog te regverdig nie. Miskien word ons padda stelselmatig gekook.

Ja, mens wonder maar altyd of jy dalk besig is om jouself te bedrieg. Maar in my geval is die hele ding in elk geval akademies: ek is te oud en te ongekwalifiseerd om te kan emigreer. Geen land wat by sy verstand is sal my daar toelaat nie. :-)


Offline BoogieMonster

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Yeah... It is likely the last place Id consider to run too. Far too restrictive imo. Not sure either where Id go though. I like my country...

For all its problems, South Africa is one of the freest places on the planet.

Yes. Mostly because of incompetence, but most of us do get to run around doing mostly whatever we want. We have a strong court system and a very progressive constitution (I'd argue too liberal, but damn good). Everyone seems mystified by my choice of the USA, so I'll elaborate:

1. Freedom: Forget about most of Europe and Eastern Europe, the middle east, Australia, China. No nanny states for me thanks.
2. Security: Forget about most of Africa and South America.
3. Opportunity: It's called the land of opportunity because it is.
4. Quality of Living: You could argue the likes of France, Sweden, Iceland or Denmark beat the USA. But see #1.

IMHO The states is not perfect on any one thing, but is the most perfect conglomeration of a lot of very good things.

Unemployment is a rarity in the states, even today. Law enforcement, if anything, is a bit too zealous. Their economy, although regulation creeps forward as it does everywhere, is mostly a huge free-for-all unhampered by overbearing Labour legislation. If not the best, then amongst the best educational facilities in the world.

IMHO If you are at all in the least way capable of making it ANYWHERE in life, you will do so in the USA, and you'll do so autonomously and mostly on your own terms whilst living in safety and not wanting for any basic necessities.

Also, the USA's name is a clue: It is a number of states, from which you can pick-and-choose any climate, economic condition, lifestyle, and world outlook you desire. You can go live in the bible belt and sing to jesus or you can go live in LA and be a godless sodomite. It's all up to you.


Finally ... I deal with American companies all the time, their levels of service are stratospheric. The competition present and the fickle nature of their clientele means they pull out all the stops all the time. When I have to deal with an American operation one moment and an SA one the next the difference is ... there are no words: In the USA shit works, 24/7. In SA shit stops breaking at 5pm and continues to break at 8am.
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool