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Current Law Students / Re: Tales of tales
« on: March 27, 2012, 03:46:55 PM »


One final point: among those who support the doctrine of Eternal Recurrence some say, it has an ethical and moral dimension. If one is to come and live this very life over and over again, one should try to live it in a way that one wants to come and relive it. That is, they tell us: "One should live it to the utmost, and without leaving anything regrettable." [...] However, it is not even necessary to conduct a controlled social experiment to see how this doctrine affects the majority of mankind. A social experiment several millenniums old, is still going on. Just look at India, a country that has lived under the shadow of karma and reincarnation for the longest time. It is a nation where Brahmins, the highest caste, have systematically ruled and dominated the whole society and kept the Sudra or chandala, (untouchables) as their footstools, without any hope, or dream of salvation.

Fatalism, or karma, does not tell people to live life to the fullest. It simply states one must accept ones fate, unquestioningly, and live it. If one accepted this philosophy one would have to say: "If I have already lived this same life many times before, and there is nothing for me to change, why talk to me about living life to the fullest? If my previous life was lived to the fullest, I will live it to the fullest again this time. If I have not done so in previous lives, then there is nothing I can do about it now. I am totally powerless." This is the logical result of Eternal Recurrence, or what we might correctly rename as: The Doctrine of Despair, which reduces human life to that of a marionette or puppet, where the strings are forever held in the hands of fate, creating a total paralysis in the mind of the individual and society. So, from either the scientific, or the moral and ethical standpoint, this is a philosophy of doom, and there is nothing much going for this doctrine. It is a totally bankrupt worldview.

[...] As for the ethical view of this philosophy, Nietzsche might not have known what poverty and squalor this fatalistic religion had brought to India. Otherwise, we don't believe he would advocate such an evil system to be introduced into European thinking. If, however, he knew full well of the paralyzing social effect of this doctrine in India, and still advocated it, then this would further prove Nietzsche's evil genius. Since his whole philosophy was centered on weaving the myth of the "Superman" and the "Super race," to rule over the earth, was he perhaps paving the way and preparing a moral code for the rest of us, the chandala, to accept and live by -- Eternal Recurrence? This could perhaps, explain why he considered it as a very crucial part of his philosophy? In that case, he meant it to serve as the final nail that would hold down the lid of the coffin he created. History, however, bears witness to the fact that it was the very "Superman" and the "Super race" Nietzsche created with the myth of his philosophy that were buried in, and nailed in that very coffin -- Hitler and his followers.

Interesting take, grass! The Eastern religions undoubtedly rely much more on "non-existence" vs. "existence," "absence" vs. "presence," "holes" vs. "fullness," such that one begins to think what is the whole point of acting, of being "active," in life - I was reading the other day, a post here about that Sartre kind of philosopher, who's literally saying, "suicide is an option in the real sense of the word" - the guy who's writing during the days of being captured by the Nazis and @ # ! * e d in the ass regularly?!

I mean, don't get me started with the French, with Philippe Pétain proclaiming the defeat of France by Germany, without any resistance at all, offering that lousy excuse that "Paris would be destroyed"? With the French whores entertaining the German soldiers during the War years and then claiming they had "class"? So, I wouldn't be surprised with the idiotic Sartre contemplating suicide versus some kind of showing the other guy that he stood for something!

From what I see, there are, in fact, parallels between Eastern philosophy and existentialism! Western people are not used to this kind of stuff, are we?! The Western philosophy is more about "action," rather than "inaction," "doing," rather than "being done." Please tell me if I am wrong! 

Come on, they say Nietzsche was a repressed homosexual who could not act on his feelings, and went on to write tales of tales of stuff about the "ascetic" and the like ... doesn't that tell you something about someone who's trying to run from himself and is not fully able to?!



[...] Instead of exploiting the slave, the master here tries to take care of the worker so that the worker can continue to work. This allows both master and slave to work for the master's master, work itself. But what is crucial about this is that the "taking care of" here or "feeding" of the slave is only feeding the slave such that the worker's work -- and not the worker himself -- can continue. The emphasis is upon work abstracted from the existence of the slave that provides the work. Thus the slave sinks below the conditions that he would be under if he were wrapped up in the feudal master/slave dialectic, because the master here is not concerned with his existence -- the master is "incompetent to assure the continued existence" of the slave, as Marx puts it. The slave cannot properly be a slave under capitalism. That is, it cannot be assured as to whether he will exist as a slave: his bare existence is threatened in the face of the abstract labor-power he temporarily embodies.

[...] The serf, in the period of serfdom, raised himself to membership in the commune, just as the petty bourgeois, under the yoke of the feudal absolutism, managed to develop into a bourgeois. The modern laborer, on the contrary, instead of rising with the process of industry, sinks deeper and deeper below the conditions of existence of his own class. He becomes a pauper, and pauperism develops more rapidly than population and wealth. And here it becomes evident that the bourgeoisie is unfit any longer to be the ruling class in society, and to impose its conditions of existence upon society as an overriding law. It is unfit to rule because it is incompetent to assure an existence to its slave within his slavery, because it cannot help letting him sink into such a state, that it has to feed him, instead of being fed by him. Society can no longer live under this bourgeoisie, in other words, its existence is no longer compatible with society.

In other words, capitalism contains within itself the seeds of its own destruction. It creates its own grave-diggers by creating a class with interests diametrically opposed to its own, bringing them together and teaching them how to cooperate. The proletariat then comes to realize that it is a class that has nothing to lose, but everything to gain, by revolting against and overthrowing the bourgeoisie.
The Marxist meaning based on the mid-19th century Communist Manifesto means that the inability of capitalism to expand without creating, in its wake, periodic and more and more severe economic crises (recessions, depressions, unemployment) will alienate more people. These will not only come from the ranks of the poor laborers (the proletariat) who would be made progressively more miserable under capitalism, but also business failures would lead to portions of the bourgeoisie going over to the side of the allegedly rising class, the proletariat, and this combination would lead to successful revolutionary overthrow of capitalist regimes. This became the bedrock doctrine of Marxism and its 20th century Communist successors.

The question appears to be

With the scarcity nowadays overcome, and the ruling class being able to "enough feeding its slaves," so that the latter will continue to work for him ..

With capitalism having (hopefully) learned from the past (Nazism being the obvious case) that only the most "extreme" and "virulent" elements of their societies can be dealt with harshly/openly enough - with the "careful" and "silent" shunning of the dissident having been raised to   just-about-an-art ..

Would or would you not envisage nowadays some kind of "revolution" as in Marx's days - with millions starving all over the world, because of the politics of the "capitalists" (State's and otherwise)?

Current Law Students / Re: "Buffer" / "Foot-in-th-Door"
« on: March 27, 2012, 02:26:45 PM »

Will you walk, the CD Theory is all too complex to fully explain it here - I'd focus instead on the practical applications of the Dissonance Theory. That's because one of the reasons it has inspired much research is its ability to explain phenomena not readily explainable by common sense. For instance, dissonance theory has been used as a way to understand events that totally confound our imagination - like the enormous power certain cult leaders like Jim Jones, David Koresh, and Marshall Herff Applewhite have had over the hearts and minds of their followers.

Take for instance Jim Jones. It goes without saying that the massacre at Jonestown was tragic in the extreme. It is beyond comprehension that a single person could make hundreds of people kill themselves and their own children.

"Jim" Jones was the founder and leader of the "Peoples Temple," best known for the Nov 18, 1978 mass suicide of 909 Temple members in Jonestown, Guyana, along with the killings of 5 other people at a nearby airstrip. Over 200 children were murdered at Jonestown, almost all of whom were forcefully made to ingest cyanide by the elite Temple members. Jones was born in Indiana and started the Temple in that state in the 1950s. Jones and the Temple later moved to California, and both gained notoriety with the move of the Temple's headquarters to San Francisco in the mid-1970s. The incident in Guyana ranks among the largest mass suicides in history, and was the single greatest loss of American civilian life in a non-natural disaster until the events of Sep 11, 2001.

Now you may have heard about the all-too-familiar technique of the foot-in-the-door. Escalation is perpetuating. Once a small commitment is made, it sets the stage for ever-increasing commitments. The behavior needs to be justified, so attitudes are changed; this change in attitudes influences future decisions and behavior. Suppose you would like to enlist someone's aid in a massive undertaking, but you know the job you have in mind for the person is so difficult, and will require so much time and effort, that the person will surely decline. What do you do? You may get the person involved in much smaller aspects of the job, ones so easy that s/he wouldn't dream of turning down. Such serves to commit the individual to the "cause." Once people are thus committed, the likelihood of their complying with the larger request increases.

Jim Jones extracted great trust from his followers one step at a time. There was a chain of ever-increasing commitments on the part of his followers. Once a small commitment is made, the stage is set for ever-increasing commitments. It's easy to understand how a charismatic leader like Jones might extract money from his church's members. Once they have committed themselves to donating a small amount in response to his message of peace and universal brotherhood, he's able to request and receive a great deal more. Next, he induces people to sell their homes and turn over the money to the church. Soon, at his request, several of his followers pull up stakes, leaving their families and friends, to start life anew in the strange and difficult environment of Guyana. There, not only do they work hard (thus increasing their commitment), but they also are cut off from potential dissenting opinion, inasmuch as they are surrounded by true believers.

Jones takes sexual liberties with several married women among his followers, who acquiesce, but reluctantly; Jones claims to be the father of their children. He had sexual relations with his men followers as well, and made them believe they were all homosexuals, while he was the only heterosexual. Finally, as a prelude to the climactic event, Jones induces his followers to perform a series of mock ritual suicides as a test of their loyalty and obedience. Thus, in a step-by-step fashion, the commitment to Jones increases. Each step in itself is not a huge, ludicrous leap from the one preceding it.

linoleum - this guy must have really been something - I mean, looks like he's using a "method" where every prior little commitment made on the part of his followers, also serves as an actual "buffer" to any subsequent and still-persisting resistance to the irrational actions he eventually orders his followers to do.

Somebody please explain to me this "BUFFER" thing, that becka talks about!

Current Law Students / Re:
« on: March 27, 2012, 01:55:02 PM »


Things function in these societies bureaucratically, based on the laws, drawn and enforced by the governments, the ones that same people elected to govern them.

So they do not, for instance, go and kill their fellow citizen to get even for him having say, raped, their child - they address the issue with the government - take the guy to the courts of law.

The government, on the other hand, has to abide by a set of norms (laws) and not overstep them, abusing the power conferred on it by the people. It can not curtail their citizens' liberties, for instance, overtly or covertly, unless good cause is shown first.

It can not resort to illegal tactics and strategies that by actually being used and reluctantly endorsed by its citizens have the effect of legitimizing them, with the end result being over-accumulation of power, beyond that that was originally intended to be invested, and conferred, by the people onto their government.

And so, the more innocent their victim of persecution, the more afraid people will be - as they too might as well be in the victim's place - with more and more power that governments will be able to steal from the people.

Will you walk me 2 my car [...] would not allow a certain branch of the government go off the limits and employ "illegal" tactics, as you say, on its citizens - the executive body, would need, for instance, a warrant from a judge (the legislative), which would make the tactic that you talk about, "legal."

Assuming, of course, that they use the "warrant" (if they ever get one) to do exactly what the warrant was asked for and provided for - but, honey, with all the * & ^ % we've heard the American government has done, even on its own people - sincerely I can't give you much credit here!

Actually, pick, you can not give any credit at all to the poster (I believe it was guydegia?), here - because, as my professor once told me, there are some things you just can't get a warrant for/from!

For the simple reason, they've been declared ILLEGAL a long time ago by the Courts.

Current Law Students / Re:
« on: March 27, 2012, 01:41:54 PM »

After a verbose preamble, which among other things informs you helpfully that "behavior becomes unacceptable when it infringes on the rights of others," the  Code of Conduct of the Public Library of the city where I live provides thirty-one examples of unacceptable conduct. These examples can be sorted into five general categories:

1. Highly site-specific regulations (i.e., "Eating or Drinking," "Overcrowding at Study Tables or Carrels (limit of 4 per study table").
2. Behavior associated with street people ("Bathing/Washing Clothes," "Lack of Shoes or Shirt," "Loitering including refusal to leave at closing").
3. Behavior evincing failures of basic acculturation mechanisms ("Obscene Language," "Body Odor/Odorizers/Perfume/Cologne (Excessive) which Elicits General Complaint or Causes Discomfort to Other Library Users," "Excessive Public Displays of Affection").
4. General criminal behavior ("Theft," "Gambling" "Physical, Sexual or Verbal Abuse or Harassment of Library Users or Staff").
5. Criminalized behavior associated with mental illness or substance abuse ("Exhibitionism/Flashing," "Visible Drug or Alcohol Intoxication," "Voyeurism/Peeping").


[...] How well does this theory apply to a typical piece of modern bureaucratic regulation? Or the types of behavior the library code prohibits, you might note that only those listed in the first category can be thought to convey useful information to any minimally socialized member of the community. There could be a real reason as to whether you're allowed to bring a bag of pretzels into the library, but do you really require "notice" that you can't snatch purses, expose yourself to patrons, do your laundry in the bathroom, or play high-stakes poker in the reference area? Suppose you hadn't been given notice of any of these things; does it follow you're free to claim as a defense insufficient publicity on the part of the state?

Can there be any non-psychotic person of minimally functional intelligence who would suppose that any of the things on this list, other than those dealt with in the most site-specific regulations, were not prohibited? [...] So here we seem to be faced with a wholly superfluous invocation of legal rules: rules that merely reflect tacit social understandings that themselves have no apparent need to be cast into a public legal text.


Posting a public notice of the unacceptability of theft, or of exhibitionism, or of physical and sexual abuse, is very much like passing yet another law providing still more penalties for the sale of already illegal drugs. Such actions represent our legal culture's equivalent to the practice of nailing garlic over doorways to repel vampires. In each case a psychological imperative born of a sense of lack of control, and of the fear and anxiety this sensation produces, demands of us that we "do something." Those same factors then lead us to do things that appear in the cold light of rational analysis to be almost wholly irrational.

Funny I read the other day a joke - it kinda illustrates what's talked about here:

Little Johnny is riding a bike to the street corner and he sees a cop riding a horse. The cop asks "Did Santa give you that bike?" and Johnny replies "Yes!" so the cop hands him over a ticket and says, "Here, next year, tell Santa to put lights on it!"

Johnny gets annoyed and asks "Did Santa give you that horse?" The cop plays along by telling him "Yes!" and Johnny tells him "Next year, tell him the d i c k goes under the horse, not on top of it!" and rides off on his bike.

Hahaha eli - you're so funny - I have read a slightly different version of the joke though - anyway!

Would you please share, Lefka? :)

That's why we're here for.

Look, listen, and live!

Current Law Students / Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« on: March 27, 2012, 01:24:38 PM »


The fundamental theme of our historical period, domination, readily implies that of liberation as the objective to be achieved (given the fact that themes of any era are always interacting dialectically with their opposites) It is by means of critical thinking that individuals will be able to understand the world in totality, not in fragments, achieving a clearer perception of the whole. To this end, a dialectical method of thought, exemplified in the analysis of a "coded" situation is presented. The "decoding" on the part of students/learners will guarantee moving from the part to the whole and then returning to the parts, so that the Subject recognizes oneself in the coded concrete situation and recognizes the latter as a situation in which he finds himself, as well as with the other people; accomplished as it should, this makes possible for the abstract to be "transported" to the concrete realm, by the critical perception of the subject himself. The task of the teacher becomes the "representing" of the universe of themes to the people from whom it was initially received -- presented to them as a "problem."

I'm familiar with the method - the thing is that placing the workers in these coding/decoding situations for them to actually appreciate the deep * & ^ % they're in won't work - unless it's being done all the time, or at least for a very long time, say 10 years or so.

say it don't pay it, are you saying that the "teacher" has to have the "workers" gathered in a classroom kind of thing - and surveying their reactions and the like in response to the "themes" mentioned?! Like do this, every day, for 10 years in a raw?!

I would really be interested (irony aside!) how this's supposed to work! I mean, really!

As you can see, I'd not be totally dismissive of this kind of thing, as I understand it - so, any takers?!

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