Just as I was about to post my previous article, I got my latest issue of The Economist with five articles on the subject indicated on the cover. For a second I thought I may have to rewrite my post to refer to some ideas. I didn’t find any worthy of comment. All tactics dealing with symptoms. How to do better policing, how to fight the war in Syria, how to rearrange spheres of influence in the Middle-East.
I had a conversation with a 17 year old friend. I asked him what he thinks of the events in Paris. Well, he knew about it. …..and???? It is sad and upsetting, but with so many atrocities around the world, why are we paying so much attention to this one?
War is Peace. Freedom is Slavery. Ignorance is Strength.
(George Orwell, 1984)
I grew up as an abused child. My step-father was an alcoholic sadist. I learned very early in my life the meaning of ‘peace’: continuous appeasement and unquestioning submission to the capricious will of those with power over us just so that they let us be.
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I learned something very important last weekend: I should be a Slovak. If I cannot, I should definitely aspire to be. I learned it from an authoritative source, a Slovak.
Slovaks, you see, are the prettiest, strongest and smartest people in the world. They don’t take crap from nobody. Wherever they go, they succeed. This Slovak loves Canada because – as he said – ‘Canadians are stupid’. It’s easy to get rich here. It’s a lot more difficult when you are surrounded by equally smart, strong and pretty people. Continue reading →
This post was prompted by comments made to one of my previous ones:
“Dude if you make a title that includes the words “the Muslims” as a group, you immediately set off the asshole detector.
Are you a libertarian?
Try thinking about people as individuals.”
I am not going to argue his assessment here, but I will try to answer the question that is lurking behind it: what does it mean to be a Muslim in the Western world? Continue reading →
A facebook friend posted this picture on her timeline with the following comment:
“don’t stop at the photo, make an effort, read it all.”
From the album: Timeline Photos
By Sebastian Bieniek Continue reading →
!@# ahdkry %$!$!* @#$ :;”’# Marshall Rothstein !#%& bdfg &^ 18$% E8di.
Is this hate speech? How do you know?
I got censored. When my personal editor saw what I wrote, she flipped. She does not like me being offensive which I clearly was as I wanted to make a point. What you see is the coded version.
I have to ask for your indulgence. Think of the most offensive way to address a supreme court judge including his ethnic background possibly his political orientation, his mental capacity and since this case was about protecting the feelings of homosexuals; a suggestion for him to perform a particular homosexual act. Think rude and insulting.
And now, let’s talk about it!
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What makes a good question? It is said that a good lawyer will never ask a question in a courtroom to which he does not already know the answer. To them, a good question is the one that can have only one answer, the one they want to hear.
For some, the good questions are the gotcha questions. The ones that stomp the opponent. The ones they cannot immediately answer. The ones that make them winners by default.
For some, it is the loaded question, the one that is so heavy with assumptions that the opponent cannot answer it in any way without making himself look bad or stupid.
To me, a good question is the least obvious one. The one with the lowest level of assumptions. The one that forces the other side to think about his assumptions, his premises. A good question is a question on the margin. The one your opponent has not thought of before.
All too often debates happen around core ideas colliding head on, both parties reinforcing their own beliefs, walking away in the end more convinced that the other side is wrong.