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Old 10-27-2018, 03:34 PM
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Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
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Default Shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh

https://www.vox.com/2018/10/27/18032...life-synagogue

A right-wing terrorist shot up a synagogue in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighborhood (the heart of Pittsburgh's Jewish Community), killing numerous people (I've seen the number put at 11-12 in some places). Somehow, despite shooting at and wounding at least three police officers, he was apprehended alive, which may tell you something about his race.

I'm feeling a mix of heartbreak for the Pittsburgh community and for Jews across America, of terror as I watch my country take step after step in the direction of fascism, of disgust for the fence-sitting centrists who are content to watch it happen while moaning about the "regressive left", and of rage directed at the current administration (and their supporters and enablers, i.e. everyone who retains any affiliation with the Republican party), which has done nothing but encourage and condone this and other acts of terrorism.

These are scary times we live in.
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Old 10-27-2018, 07:21 PM
J.B. Marshall J.B. Marshall is offline
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Default Shooting at synagogue

Washington Post puts the number of dead at 11 Aaron.
A terrible crime indeed.
I don't know what to say to alleviate your fears and your heartbreak, except that I feel the same way.
Take care.
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Old 10-28-2018, 07:49 AM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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It's a horrible horrible tragedy Aaron. And yes, your country seems to be in a hell of a mess. I'm not sure you can argue that people at the centre of the political spectrum are 'content to watch it happen' though. If I were Jewish, I might feel at my safest being represented by the centre.

US politics does baffle me. Where is your equivalent of our 'leader of the opposition'? Do the Democrats have a leader, a figurehead? It seems that all efforts by that party must be in reaching those 40 something percent of people who didn't vote at all in the last election. Trump and his enablers are despicable, but you're a long way yet from fascism.*

Edit: *this is meant to sound hopeful, rather than dismissive of your totally understandable rage. I hope I'm right, rather than naive.

Last edited by Mark McDonnell; 10-28-2018 at 08:28 AM.
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Old 10-28-2018, 08:53 AM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is online now
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x

Mark: "Trump and his enablers are despicable, but you're a long way yet from fascism."

It could be that we are fast approaching a new kind of fascism. A kind of wolf-in-sheep's-clothing kind of fascism. A First World brand of fascism that fans fear and hides behind conspiratorial thinking. A concoction of democracy and authoritarianism mixed with narcism. A traumatic response to the threats of terrorism that ideological conflict can create. It's a traumatic response to traumatic times that many see as necessary. It's a wolf.

Last night he tweeted during the World Series game to say that the manager of the Dodgers had made a mistake to take a pitcher out of the game when he did. This is our president tweeting about the way a baseball game is being played (at its highest level, I might add. Kind of like second-guessing Bobby Fischerís tactical moves as he played Boris Spassky) on the same day that our country suffered one of its worst mass shootings. It's hard not to be traumatized.
x

Last edited by Jim Moonan; 10-28-2018 at 08:55 AM.
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Old 10-28-2018, 09:20 AM
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Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
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Jim, if Trump *only* tweeted about baseball, he'd do a lot less damage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark McDonnell View Post
I'm not sure you can argue that people at the centre of the political spectrum are 'content to watch it happen' though.
I argue this because they are vocally more concerned about the (rare, overblown) phenomenon of leftists on campus shutting down racist invited speakers than they are about far-right terrorists literally murdering people. I argue this because the press (which is basically centrist, outside of Fox News), continually gives lovely puff profiles to far-right ideologues (just as they did in the 1930s when Hitler was consolidating power, btw). I argue this because they are more vocally outraged about leftists yelling at Ted Cruz when he tries to eat at a restaurant than they are about the Republicans stealing children from their parents and putting them in cages. Do the centrists feel horrified by yesterday's events? I'm sure they do. They're not monsters. Do I have any confidence that they will do anything whatsoever to stop the Republicans, who at this point are a fascist party? It was hard to type that, it's such a laughable idea.

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Originally Posted by Mark McDonnell View Post
US politics does baffle me. Where is your equivalent of our 'leader of the opposition'? Do the Democrats have a leader, a figurehead? It seems that all efforts by that party must be in reaching those 40 something percent of people who didn't vote at all in the last election.
No, they don't have a leader. When they're not busy completely failing to stand up to Trump in any meaningful way (though, granted, Trump controls every branch of government; if they make gains in November maybe they'll be less useless), they're currently doing all they can to refuse to learn any lessons from the 2016 election. They have no identity besides not being Trump. Rather than move at all to the left to win over those who didn't vote in 2016, they'd rather try to win over the white working class votes who switched to Trump from Obama, because they (wrongly) think that was the difference maker in 2016. They'll probably run an empty suit like Cory Booker in 2020, and lose.

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Originally Posted by Mark McDonnell View Post
Trump and his enablers are despicable, but you're a long way yet from fascism.
The Holocaust historians I've seen analyze our current situation disagree. The philosopher I know who just wrote a book on fascism disagrees. I hope you are right, but I doubt it.
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Old 10-28-2018, 09:21 AM
Roger Slater Roger Slater is offline
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And it's not just that remark about the manager, Jim. On the same day as the synagogue massacre, he went to a speaking engagement and told the audience that he almost didn't come because of the tragedy he was having a bad hair day.
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Old 10-28-2018, 09:24 AM
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Orwn Acra Orwn Acra is online now
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I guess those calls for civility didn't work.
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Old 10-28-2018, 10:19 AM
John Riley John Riley is offline
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Mark, the difference is our parliamentary leaders are not next in line to be nominated for president. There is a bigger gap between the executive and legislative branches of government. I'd prefer a parliamentary system, but this is what we have. It is conservative in the worst way. Change is almost impossible, which is what the elites who wrote the constitution wanted.

Trump is clearly a sociopath. He became president because of the antiquated Electoral College. What is more frightening is how the rest of his party lined up behind his lying and corruption. They have their masters and all they want is tax breaks. They don't care about truth or honesty--these crooks caring about honesty, what a joke--religion, including abortion, foreign policy, except when it interferes with their business or any other issue. They are the least patriotic people in the U.S. and the GOP is set up to take care of them. So, in order to please their masters, the GOP dropped every illusion of decency and lined up behind our sociopathic president. I'm not surprised after what they did during the Obama years.
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Old 10-28-2018, 10:58 AM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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Quote:
Rather than move at all to the left to win over those who didn't vote in 2016, they'd rather try to win over the white working class votes who switched to Trump from Obama, because they (wrongly) think that was the difference maker in 2016
Is trying to get the white working class vote such a bad thing? They're a pretty big demographic. I miss the days when 'moving to the left' and 'winning over the white working class' weren't seen as mutually exclusive. Now the latter seems to be a euphemism for peddling bigotry and nationalism. As someone who grew up white and working class (I'm still the first, the second is fuzzier these days) it makes me sad. Being working class used to be virtually synonymous with voting for a left leaning party.

Aren't all those examples of things that centrists are 'more concerned' about than right-wing terrorism just examples of people exercising their opinions about various stuff in a free society? I think it goes without saying that ideologically motivated murder (of any stripe) is worse than, say, left wing silliness on a university campus. But someone writing a story about the latter doesn't have to issue that caveat before they write it.
Do the likes of CNN really regularly give lovely puff profiles to far-right ideologues? If they do, that is indeed messed up.

I don't want to argue. And it's not really my place. I just think you (and by 'you' I mean America) need to vote him out. The Democrats need to do whatever it takes to make that happen.

Last edited by Mark McDonnell; 10-28-2018 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 10-28-2018, 11:26 AM
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Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
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[nvm, I don't really want to keep debating this]

Last edited by Aaron Novick; 10-28-2018 at 11:29 AM.
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