The USA is still the greatest country in the world.

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Sculptor
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Re: The USA is still the greatest country in the world.

Post by Sculptor » Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:47 pm

Philosophy Explorer wrote:
Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:40 am
All civilized people know this. That's why so many people try to get into this country. We don't have PMs that suck and many countries count on the US for support. That's why good ole Winnie begged the US for its support in WW2 when Neville Chamberlain literally helped to start WW2 by giving away Czechoslovakia to the Nazis. That was smart of England.

PhilX
LOL

All Americans of my acquaintance that say this are the same ones who don't even have a passport and can't point to Iran on a World Map.

Bad as it is I'd rather stay in the UK.

More Americans were shot this year before the end of March than were shot in D Day.

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henry quirk
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"More Americans were shot this year before the end of March than were shot in D Day."

Post by henry quirk » Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:55 pm

Stay clear of Chi Town and you'll be A-OK.

jayjacobus
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Re: The USA is still the greatest country in the world.

Post by jayjacobus » Wed Jul 03, 2019 1:53 am

vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:35 pm
bobevenson wrote:
vegetariantaxidermy wrote:Legatum Prosperity Index 2016.
Who the fuck is that, and what is their bullshit based on?

''The ranking is based on a variety of factors including wealth, economic growth, education, health, personal well-being, and quality of life. In the 2016 rankings, there were 149 countries ranked, and New Zealand topped the list, followed by Norway and Finland. In 2013, twenty-seven of the top 30 countries were democracies.
The 2016 Legatum Prosperity Index is based on 104 different variables analysed across 149 nations around the world. Source data includes Gallup World Poll, World Development Indicators, International Telecommunication Union, Fragile States Index, Worldwide Governance Indicators, Freedom House, World Health Organisation, World Values Survey, Amnesty International, Centre for Systemic Peace. The 104 variables are grouped into 9 sub-indexes, which are averaged using equal weights. The 9 sub-indexes are:

Economic Quality
Business Environment
Governance
Education
Health
Safety & Security
Personal Freedom
Social Capital
Natural Environment ''


SHE has a point, I thnk. "In your face?"

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henry quirk
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'Independence Day 2019' by someone with the moniker of JT

Post by henry quirk » Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:55 pm

The American cause is at an ebb. We begin the two hundred forty-fourth year of our independence tomorrow with substantive numbers of our citizenry believing of the country what a Calvinist believes of man: conceived in sin, and deserving only damnation.

The propositions that America is a cause for apology, that it was from the start a fatally flawed project, and that it is primarily a source of wrong and regret, are all commonplace now. The history of the great republic is suddenly a source of shame. Its purpose is abruptly an occasion for repentance. American corporations that eagerly supplicate themselves before the Communist Party of China refuse, putatively on moral grounds, to promote American symbology — or to cooperate with American law enforcement. Small towns tear down statues of great monsters of American history like William McKinley. Ordinary people born with the privilege of being African-American assert that America is not really for them. Adoptive parents blessed with the opportunity to bring Asian children to a welcoming United States spit venom at the proposition of American goodness. Americans of Mexican descent fortunate enough to have been born citizens of the United States — instead of violent, dysfunctional Mexico — nurture resentment at the American inheritance. The Congress of the United States holds hearings on whether Americans owe recompense for an inherited guilt. Several major Presidential candidates agree that we do. A major Presidential candidate declares that America owes reparation for failure to recognize an apery of marriage that became popular approximately fifteen minutes ago. Think-pieces in major American publications muse on whether American liberties — speech, religion, association, arms — are not fit to be ended. Well-paid athletes seize the opportunity to refuse respect to American symbols, flag and anthem alike. And on and on and on and on.

Behind it all, a cohort of ideologues for whom enmity to the United States is an end in itself. They pervade the major cultural and formative institutions — entertainment, education, media, government — and this is why they succeed. If patriotism is civic friendship, then these are our enemies. They ascend.

A nation requires a narrative, and in America’s case, the requisite narrative for two centuries just happened to be both positive and true. The republic was in fact — not in myth — “conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” In the seventy-sixth year of American independence, a man born a slave and therefore subjected to the most grotesque injustice in American history had this to say of the republic that had sustained his own bondage: “Allow me to say, in conclusion, notwithstanding the dark picture I have this day presented of the state of the nation, I do not despair of this country. There are forces in operation, which must inevitably work the downfall of slavery. ‘The arm of the Lord is not shortened,’ and the doom of slavery is certain. I, therefore, leave off where I began, with hope … [D]rawing encouragement from the Declaration of Independence, the great principles it contains, and the genius of American Institutions.”

For Frederick Douglass, the remedy for America was America. This had the virtue of being entirely true. What was true is now passé. What great fortune we are now blessed with much wiser men than him. In the place of a Douglass, or a Lincoln, with their misguided faith in America and Americans, we have moral titans like Kaepernick, Rapinoe, Buttigieg, Castro, and all the rest.

They will do their best to break our country. Here though is their weakness: they require your consent. Refuse it.

The truth about America is not what they peddle. The truth about America is in a Vietnamese refugee on the high seas, in a crowded and rickety boat, sometime around 1980, who has the good fortune to come across the USS Midway. The great ship sends out a party to take the refugees aboard, and the first American sailor is greeted by this refugee. He has been through tyranny and hell, but now he is smiling.

“Hello, American sailor!” he says. “Hello, freedom man!”

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henry quirk
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'The Fear of Individualism' -Tibor R. Machan

Post by henry quirk » Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:44 pm

One of America’s most important gifts to the world was the political philosophy of individualism. The central tenet of this idea is that every human being is important, especially from the point of view of law and politics, as a sovereign individual, not living by the permission of the government or some master or lord. That is the basic idea underpinning not only the democratic process, the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and the various prohibitions addressed to the government concerning how to treat the citizenry, but the free market economic system as well.

Individualism and Capitalism

The free market system or capitalism is founded on the doctrine that each person has a basic right to private property in his or her labor and what he or she creates and earns freely and honestly. The economic idea of freedom of trade—in labor, skill, goods, services, etc.—rests squarely on individualism. No one is anyone else’s master or servant. No involuntary servitude except as punishment for crime is permitted. Thus everyone has the basic right to engage in free trade—as in any other kind of peaceful action, even when his or her particular decision may not be the wisest or even morally exemplary.

In an individualist society the law upholds the idea that everyone is free to choose to associate with others on his or her own terms—whether for economic, artistic, religious, or romantic purposes. Not that all the choices people make will be good. Not that individuals are infallible. Not that they cannot abuse their freedoms. All of that is granted. But none of that justifies making others their masters, however smart those others may be. To quote Abraham Lincoln, “No man is good enough to govern another man, without that other’s consent.”

But today the political philosophy under the most severe attack in many intellectual circles is individualism. From leftover Marxists to newly emergent communitarians, and all the way to democratic pragmatists in the fields of political economy, sociology, and philosophy—everyone is badmouthing individualism. It picked up several years ago with the publication of Robert N. Bellah’s book Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life, and continues with innumerable related efforts, including the launching of the journal The Responsive Community and the publication of a new book by Bellah, The Good Society, as well as Amitai Etzioni’s just-published The Spirit of Community.

These and many other efforts constitute a concerted attack against the individual and his rights. Perhaps predictably, the efforts involve gross distortions of what individualism actually is. It is supposed to foster disloyalty to family, friends, and country. It is supposedly hedonistic and instills antisocial sentiments in people. It is allegedly purely materialistic, lacking any spiritual and cultural values.

But such distortion is accomplished by focusing selectively on a very limited area of individualist philosophy, one employed mostly in technical economic analysis and serving merely as a model by which to understand strictly commercial events in free market economies. An exclusively economic conception of the human individual is admittedly barren—it treats everyone as nothing other than a bundle of desires. But this is not very different from the way every science employs models, taking a very simple idea to make sense of a limited area of the world.

Individualism, True versus False

The anti-individualists do not look at individualism as it is developed by social thinkers such as Frank Chodorov, F. A. Hayek, or Ayn Rand, let alone by some of their contemporary students who are developing these ideas and showing how vibrant a political system and culture can be when human beings are understood as individuals. The sheer creative power of human beings should make clear that their individuality is undeniable, crucial to every facet of human living, good or bad. Yet, this essential individuality of every person by no means takes away the vital role various social affiliations play for them; human individuals are social beings.

The kind of community worthy of human life is intimately tied to individualism; such a community, even if the most suitable setting for human living, must be chosen by the individuals who occupy it. If this is subverted by forcing individuals into communities, those involuntary communities will not be genuine communities at all. Individual choice and responsibility are essential to human flourishing.

Indeed, in America, where individualism has flourished more than elsewhere, there are millions of different communities to which individuals belong, often simultaneously, and this is possible because individuals have their right to choose reasonably well protected. Not only do all individuals join a wide array of communities-family, church, profession, clubs, civic associations, and political parties—but there are vastly different approaches to living that also draw around them large segments of the population who join freely, without any coercion and regimentation. But instead of appreciating the robust nature of individualism, including its support for the healthiest form of communitarianism, its opponents are trying to discredit it in any way they can. Why?

Well, some of their motives may be decent enough—some may indeed fear the impact of narrow economic individualism and thus carp against all individualism. But sometimes their motivations cannot be understood as anything else but a hunger for power over other people’s lives. Otherwise, why would the critics ignore perfectly sensible versions of individualism and insist on the caricatures? Over and over again they invoke the caricature even when other, well developed versions are available.

Something like this seems to be the best explanation for wishing to destroy the most significant American discovery, namely, the vital contribution of individuality to human culture. Why would such attacks be launched but to reintroduce subjugation, involuntary servitude, and the demeaning of individuals as individuals in favor of some elite?

No doubt those clamoring for power rationalize their actions with the thought of certain worthy goals: They want a cooperative, harmonious, mutually enhancing community. They often believe that individuals as individuals are dangerous but as members of a community they are wonderful. As the Russian author Tatyana Tolstaya observes in a recent issue of The New Republic:

Taken individually, in short, everyone is not good. Perhaps this is true, but then how did all these scoundrels manage to constitute a good people? The answer is that “the people” is not “constituted of.” According to [collectivists] “the people” is a living organism, not a “mere mechanical conglomeration of disparate individuals.” This, of course, is the old, inevitable trick of totalitarian thinking: “the people” is posited as unified and whole in its multiplicity. It is a sphere, a swarm, an anthill, a beehive, a body. And a body should strive for perfection; everything in it should be smooth, sleek, and harmonious. Every organ should have its place and its function: the heart and brain are more important than the nails and the hair, and so on. If your eye tempts you, then tear it out and throw it away; cut off sickly members, curb those limbs that will not obey, and fortify your spirit with abstinence and prayer.

That is why they should be in power: They are the head of the organism, of the community; they know what is good; and they ought to be making the decisions as to who remains part of it and who must be cut off.

Members of society do have different roles; the economists speak convincingly of the benefits of the division of labor. The errors of the collectivists are (1) their presumption that they know better than the individuals involved which members of society are less important, and (2) they have the right to eliminate those members. But individuals are ends in themselves, not animals to be sacrificed on the altar of the collectivist state.

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Re: The USA is still the greatest country in the world.

Post by jayjacobus » Thu Jul 04, 2019 10:05 pm

In an unexpected televised address on Saturday, Queen Elizabeth II offered to restore British rule over the United States of America.

Addressing the American people from her office in Buckingham Palace, the Queen said that she was making the offer “in recognition of the desperate situation you now find yourselves in.”

"This two-hundred-and-forty-year experiment in self-rule began with the best of intentions, but I think we can all agree that it didn't end well," she said.

I think that the Queen has a great sense of humor.

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henry quirk
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nope

Post by henry quirk » Thu Jul 04, 2019 10:25 pm


jayjacobus
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Re: nope

Post by jayjacobus » Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:46 pm

You never say, "Yep". Your "yep" button is disabled.

Walker
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Re: The USA is still the greatest country in the world.

Post by Walker » Fri Jul 05, 2019 12:29 am

jayjacobus wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 10:05 pm
I think that the Queen has a great sense of humor.
https://cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/ ... er-169.jpg

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henry quirk
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Jay

Post by henry quirk » Fri Jul 05, 2019 1:57 am

"Your "yep" button is disabled."

nope: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=26450&p=414714#p414714


*Yep. I can explain why I think morality 'is' objective (and I'm not the sharpest knife), so it should be a piece of cake for Common (who's visited the whetstone recently) to fill us in on why morality is subjective.









*see, Jay? my 'yep' button ain't busted

PeteJ
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Re: The USA is still the greatest country in the world.

Post by PeteJ » Fri Jul 05, 2019 5:49 pm

Henry - Your post are most eloquent and interesting. But I cannot grasp why you think all these values and principles are unique to your country. It could be a great power for good but is crippled by arrogance and a lack of respect or understanding for the rest of the world.

Perhaps it shows up clearly in the response to 9/11. At the time you had the sympathies of the entire word. Rather than exploit this opportunity to mend friendships and establish good relations you threw it away and went to war against almost everybody. It seemed a rather childish response even at at the time, and bound to do no good for anyone.

We all know that the USA is great in some ways and not in others. Just like most countries. Over here we've got Brexit to sort out and one of the reasons some people voted to remain is the danger of increased American influence.

As I hear it many of the first foreign settlers were religious dogmatists fleeing from increasing European liberalism, and this seems to be regularly forgotten.

But don't worry. Soon all this critical ire will be re-directed to China.

If the OP had suggested that America was a terrible country a lot of people would have chipped in to disagree. It's the idea that it is uniquely great that riles people so much. Of course it's attractive to people living with poverty, war and social chaos, but so are most better-off countries.

My country is rubbish in many ways, just like yours, guilty of countless sins, and we also have a habit of re-writing history to our own advantage.

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henry quirk
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Pete

Post by henry quirk » Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:04 pm

I ain't sayin' America is perfect (far from it): I just say it's great (*the greatest).









*I'm biased

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Sculptor
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Re: Pete

Post by Sculptor » Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:35 pm

henry quirk wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:04 pm
I ain't sayin' America is perfect (far from it): I just say it's great (*the greatest).









*I'm biased
And conveniently ignorant.

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henry quirk
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"And conveniently ignorant."

Post by henry quirk » Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:45 pm

How so?

jayjacobus
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Re: Jay

Post by jayjacobus » Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:53 pm

henry quirk wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 1:57 am
"Your "yep" button is disabled."

nope: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=26450&p=414714#p414714


*Yep. I can explain why I think morality 'is' objective (and I'm not the sharpest knife), so it should be a piece of cake for Common (who's visited the whetstone recently) to fill us in on why morality is subjective.







*see, Jay? my 'yep' button ain't busted
And yet your following statement doesn't explain "yep"

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