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Please provide demographics, and a rather comprehensive view of the nature of our society, the % rural vs. % urban, the percent of the GDP that is represented by Agriculture vs. industry, etc.
Thanks.
Do you read 225 year old health texts, too, if you get MRSA?
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On 12/30/2009 7:24 PM, Neil Brooks wrote:

I study books that have a demonstrated track record of either great success or great failure - to learn to succeed or to avoid failure respectively. The Lockeian government formed by Jefferson et al was a smashing success. All collectivist systems have been abysmal failures and usually human rights horror shows.
The demographic composition then- and now is irrelevant to this discussion except for people trying to find ways to justify their collectivist ideology.
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It's one thing to try to model the ideals of "Conservatism," but ... to actively ignore -- as you make it sound as though you do -- ALL of the myriad and profound changes that have taken place in our world since our nation's inception ... seems ... rather closed-minded, no?
To rhetorically reject all advancements of society for the purposes of viewing -- as narrowly as humanly possible -- the intentions, implications, scope, and ideals of the Founding Fathers ... while ... posting on the Internet ... is something I can't quite get my head around....
Or ... should I just adopt your approach to a discussion and say that ... 'such a narrow view of the construction of these documents is nothing but a way for people to justify their Social Darwinism ideology?'
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On 12/30/2009 9:03 PM, Neil Brooks wrote:

I do not particularly admire Edmund Burke or the Conservatives - particularly the later versions that think poking their noses into the private lives of citizens is OK.
The formulation in question worked very nicely well into the 20th Century. Its dismemberment began with FDR and has been on a downhill slide since. Collectivism is hardly an example of of modern "progress". You defend a system that is demonstrably a failure. I defend a system that was demonstrably successful.
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Eloquent sophistry.
You do nothing but pigeon hole and label.
Your labels are empty, and your arguments are no better, for ... affixing labels IS your basic premise.
You genuinely seem bright and erudite -- TOO bright, methinks to have to resort to such churlish and childish tactics.
I don't know what a "collectivist" is, and I don't care.
I haven't defended any "system."
'Tis a genuine shame that you can't address an actual issue on the merits.
It may well be that I'm the only one that sees you doing this, and recognizes it as what it is: bad form.
But ... that's okay.
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On 12/31/2009 8:51 AM, Neil Brooks wrote:

Translation: I don't understand your position but you're wrong anyway.

Sure you have - the system of wealth redistribution in your "Work For The Common Good" scheme earlier articulated.

I've done so throughout this subthread.

Thanks for your approval. One more time: Taxing for the equal benefit of all citizens in defense of their liberty is OK. Taxing some citizens for the exclusive benefit of others is stealing.
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[snip[
Ohhhhh, Gee.
THIS just HAS to be your work:
"If ever there was any doubt about the elitist mentality of todays Left, one needs only to witness their condescension and smarm in response to those who oppose their communist-lite healthcare agenda."
Am I right??
Wow. On the (slightly risky, I know) presumption that it is ... well ... take care, then. Bye-bye.
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On 12/30/09 9:15 PM, Neil Brooks wrote:

As you spoon feed us irony as to be so condescending and smarmy with your assertion.
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-MIKE-

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I genuinely don't even understand that statement.
Labels and name-calling are a tactic for the ease and convenience -- intellectually -- of those who must oft resort to them.
What's so hard about discussing *ideas*, without the need for chronic labeling of everything and everybody?
I have a lot of respect for those whose ideas vary from mine. Hell, I don't learn a DAMNED THING talking to people who AGREE with me.
But there's nothing to be learned from a fountain of epithets.
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On 12/30/2009 9:15 PM, Neil Brooks wrote:

Right, because in the absence of defensible ideas ... there is silence.
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Please provide demographics, and a rather comprehensive view of the nature of our society, the % rural vs. % urban, the percent of the GDP that is represented by Agriculture vs. industry, etc.
********************************************************************************************
I really do like that sort of retort, but in all honesty, it would be incumbent upon you to use those specifics to refute the claim.
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On 12/30/2009 8:45 AM, Doug Miller wrote:

> > This idealistic "right of everyman to vote" will prove to be the root > factor in the eventual downfall of this country. > > Sad, but true.

Nothing to do with my basic premise, which was put back in above, where it belongs.
I don't like it either, but as with most idealistic concepts, they simply can't stand up to practicality.
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I agree with your basic premise, but not with the proposed remedy. Benjamin Franklin was once asked how long he thought the republic would endure; he is reputed to have responded "Until the people discover they can vote themselves money from the public treasury" -- hence my suggestion.

:-)
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On 12/30/2009 9:47 AM, Doug Miller wrote:

Sorry ... my fault. I misread your point. Mea culpa ...
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No problem, Karl. Thanks.
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wrote:

So if through no fault of yours you can no longer work (say due to illness) and you receive public assistance, you would no longer be allowed to vote? That strikes me as pointlessly unfair.
How about the right to vote being contingent on passing a modest current affairs test? If you can't provide one-paragraph outlines of four out of seven major municipal issues and outline the positions of the candidates for mayor and city council then you can't vote (instead you're required to spend the day helping at a polling place or doing some other work of value to the community--say picking up trash in the park with a sign on your back that you're too ignorant to vote). At least then your eligibility is determined by something you have control over. Citizens not able to communicate in English would get *one* pass on that and be able to take the test in Spanish or whatever--but in four years they test in English or they don't vote. Naturally provisions would be made for the illiterate, the blind et al.
However I'd also make voting mandatory, so those who can't be bothered to acquaint themselves with the issues to a reasonable degree would still have to give up a day of public service--intentional ignorance would not get them off the hook.
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I'd certainly go along with making exceptions for "no fault of your own" cases, perhaps assessing whether an individual is a net taxpayer or a net leech on the basis of a five-year moving average. But I don't think that anyone who is able to work, but simply refuses to, has any claim on either society's resources or its decision-making processes.

No argument there at all. I'm in favor of all of that.

The first needs to be in place before instituting the second. We have enough of a problem now with uninformed, ignorant voters without *requiring* them to vote. Thank goodness that a large number of the uninformed and ignorant are apathetic as well -- I prefer that those people not vote.
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DGDevin wrote:

Hell, lots of the candidates couldn't do that.
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wrote:

And that actually is an even bigger problem....
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DGDevin wrote:

Or it becomes a powerful motivation to become productive again. As others recommended, a 5 year moving average or other mechanisms could address this.
This is rapidly becoming more than an academic exercise. We are coming very close to the point where less than 50% of taxpayers will be paying nearly 100% of income taxes. When we swing past that point, the majority being non-payers will view the minority as their source of funding and government largess. That's going to result in a rapid downward spiral as the dependent class starts voting for those who promise the most and the productive class stops being so productive because the results of their labors are being taken from them to the point it is no longer worth the effort.
... snip
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