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Old March 25th, 2017, 03:29 PM   #1
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Should the United States Cease to Exist?

'
If the proper functioning of the Constitution depends upon "the moral and ethical standard of our representatives" and upon "an informed and involved electorate," then the situation is clearly hopeless, and the Constitution is finished, kaput, unworkable, trash, a has-been. We need a new political system that will work when we must assume that those in governance are immoral, amoral, unethical scoundrels and the electorate is uninformed, misinformed and apathetic.

As I recall from my political indoctrination ---- I mean, my civics classes ---- the world-view of the framers of the Old Constitution was distinctly jaundiced, and that they assumed that people who sought power were not to be trusted. That is why there were so many "checks and balances" in the first place. In this, at least, they showed some acumen. But,

tempora mutantur, nos et in illis mutamur.
[Times change, and we change with them]

The crude and simple-minded safeguards in the Old Constitution may have been adequate for the unsophisticated, agrarian America of the 18th century, but they are ludicrously deficient in a 21st century society which is technologically complex, dominated by vast, soulless aggregates of monopolistic power, and where militarism and ruthlessness are sedulously cultivated in both the rulers and in their pawns. The Constitution has failed, is failing and will fail ever more disastrously as time goes by. Within the next ten years, I predict that its utter inanity will be apparent even to a large percentage of the presently deluded population.
.
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Old March 25th, 2017, 03:51 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Aufgeblassen View Post
I seriously doubt any nation would consider invading us, much less doing so, much less succeeding!!!
"We have seen the enemy, and they are us."

Why would any external enemy bother invading the USA, when Americans are doing such a good job of destroying their own country?
.
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Old March 27th, 2017, 02:14 PM   #3
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'
I do not hate America or even its government: to paraphrase Robert Louis Stevenson, I regard it with an indifference closely bordering upon aversion. Power has passed or is passing from it; why should I puff up its importance by taking it seriously?

I have no objection to associations of so-called "patriots," but I regard them much as I do societies of stamp-collectors or re-creators of Civil War battles: devotees of hobbies or lovers of historical anachronisms.

The choice of the present order of things or a balkanized America, rife with anarchy and violence, is a false dichotomy. For one thing, look at the actual state of affairs now! If one examines violence, disorder, corruption and the bickerings and battles of rival power centers in the dear, dear "homeland," it is already rather closer to Colombia than to France!

The notion of disintegration into fiefdoms is pretty old-fashioned. We do not live in an agricultural feudal era, but rather, in a post-industrial Information Age. Messages flash from one end of the globe to the other in a fraction of a second; we can travel to the antipodes faster and in greater comfort than a royal messenger could ride from Paris to Provence in Old France. Welcome to the Global Village!

Already, the nation-state is pretty obsolete. The Roman Empire, for a long time, preserved the forms of the Republic, but the practice of power was utterly different. Likewise, we preserve the forms of the Old Constitution, but the National Security State and the military-industrial conspiracy render the real situation utterly different from anything envisioned by the Founding Fathers. I will not regard the passing of the present system with any regret.

The nation-state was essentially a creature of the 19th and 20th centuries. It scarcely existed before then, and is even now passing away in this century. I suppose it may continue to have some use as a postal code.

In the Middle Ages, there were a couple of centers of pan-European power: the Empire and the Church. Otherwise, all the other centers of significant power existed below the level of the nation-state.

In our time, we see the fanning out of national cultures all over the globe, in intricate networks of associations. We see innumerable supra-national organizations and informal groups. Concomitantly, various groupings below the level of the nation are gathering power and influence; one thinks of Bretons and Ocitans in France, Basques and Catalonians in Spain, Scots and Welsh in Britain.

All of these are inexorably drawing power away from the obsolete nation-state.

I live in a small city which contains an incredible number of clubs, cliques, associations and action groups. I marvel at the intricate, shifting, dynamic network which they form; yet my city is not a warring, chaotic mess. On the whole, it functions pretty well. What is true of my city can be true of the new world which we are entering. It may degenerate into chaos, but it is not inevitable that it do so.
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Old March 27th, 2017, 03:41 PM   #4
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'
I think the essential difference between myself and jingos like Blowhard is that he has a sentimental attachment to the notion "United States of America," and I have none. He apparently thinks that the USA is an ornament to humanity, while I, on the other hand, regard it as a failed state. He thinks that the Constitution should be cherished, and I regard it as an antiquated monstrosity that cannot be replaced fast enough.

I am convinced that the changes in the next hundred years will be far more sweeping and breath-taking than those of the past hundred years, and that our present concerns will seem as ridiculous and absurd as the great social questions of the Edwardian Era.

The USA, as we have known it, is dead. No amount of artificial resuscitation will bring it back to life. It is time to move forward. The Constitution is not a suicide pact.

I am sure that he and I will never agree about this, but does it really matter? He and I and all the other geezers here will soon be dead. We have no right to say to Time, "Stay, thou art so beautiful!" History will decide between us --- and fairly soon, I suspect. Others will replace us, as we have replaced others. Their ways will not be our ways, just as our ways are not those of our grandfathers. We cannot force the future to be as we would wish it.

Those who come after us will have plenty of problems, mostly caused by us. There is no reason for us to increase their problems by clinging to the past.
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Old March 28th, 2017, 05:27 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by numan View Post
'
I do not hate America or even its government: to paraphrase Robert Louis Stevenson, I regard it with an indifference closely bordering upon aversion. Power has passed or is passing from it; why should I puff up its importance by taking it seriously?

You are hardly indifferent to America. Just look at the number of unidirectional threads and posts you've made about it.

isn't it possible you're engaging in just a wee bit of justification bias for leaving America when you did?
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Old March 28th, 2017, 03:23 PM   #6
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'
Leaving the United States of Hysteria and settling in a place of natural beauty where most people possess courtesy and common sense almost unknown in the USA was the best decision of my life.

The only thing wrong with it is that I am still too close to the USA.

Pauvre Canada! Loin de Dieu, et près des États-Unis !
.
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Old March 28th, 2017, 03:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by numan View Post
'
Leaving the United States of Hysteria and settling in a place of natural beauty where most people possess courtesy and common sense almost unknown in the USA was the best decision of my life.

The only thing wrong with it is that I am still too close to the USA.

Pauvre Canada! Loin de Dieu, et près des États-Unis !
.
The way you debase my country and project your "Holier than Thou" attitude of pseudo intellect make me relatively pleased you decided to leave and does little to place Canada in a pleasant light. I do indeed find Canadians and Canada to be a beautiful place and people....you do not represent them in my experience.
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Old March 28th, 2017, 05:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by tecoyah View Post
The way you debase my country and project your "Holier than Thou" attitude of pseudo intellect make me relatively pleased you decided to leave and does little to place Canada in a pleasant light. I do indeed find Canadians and Canada to be a beautiful place and people....you do not represent them in my experience.
You can hardly expect me to be as nice and pleasant as most Canadians --- after all, I was born and raised in the United States.
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Old March 28th, 2017, 05:58 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Aufgeblassen View Post
Jingo? Huh? You seriously need to explain your ridiculousness! I be just an AVERAGE moderate citizen.
Now, that is a truly disquieting thought !!




.

Last edited by numan; March 28th, 2017 at 06:07 PM.
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Old March 28th, 2017, 06:09 PM   #10
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You are less nice than Canadians, and a lot less nice than Americans.
Tell that to the Vietnamese and Iraqis who have had experience of Americans.
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Old March 29th, 2017, 04:09 PM   #11
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The way you debase my country and project your "Holier than Thou" attitude of pseudo intellect make me relatively pleased you decided to leave....
Your emotional reaction is not worthy of a rational intellect.

I dare say that if I made similar comments about Russia or China or Nazi Germany, you would be emotionally neutral about it. So why get your knickers in knots when it is a question of the USA?

Long ago I decided there were only two ways to react to criticism: if it was true, then one should thank the critic. If it was false, then ignore it.

For example: it is true that the US government murdered three million people in Vietnam, and dropped on that country 3 times the tonnage of bombs as was used in all of World War II.

These facts put the United States in the same category as Nazi Germany, Stalin's Russia and Maoist China.

To shut one's eyes against the facts, deny them, and pretend they don't exist is a sure way to make them happen again --- as in fact they happened again in Iraq.

The alternative is to become a manic, hebephrenic jingo like someone I could name, but won't.
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Old March 29th, 2017, 05:00 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by numan View Post
Your emotional reaction is not worthy of a rational intellect.

I dare say that if I made similar comments about Russia or China or Nazi Germany, you would be emotionally neutral about it. So why get your knickers in knots when it is a question of the USA?
....snip.....
I would hope the first sentence would have made it very clear that this is my country...why would I have bothered otherwise.
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Old March 29th, 2017, 05:28 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Aufgeblassen View Post
Numan seems clueless.
Is that glass wall cracked yet?
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Old March 29th, 2017, 05:44 PM   #14
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'
My good ol' homeland is Minkowski space-time, and I've never left it ---- as far as I know! ---

I am a citizen of the world [kosmopolites], and everywhere is home to me.
--- Epictetus [ ? ]
.
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Old March 30th, 2017, 02:04 AM   #15
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The fact you do not understand my comment verifies its accuracy.
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Old March 30th, 2017, 05:40 AM   #16
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Well then there now.
I believe he is saying that you are throwing a stone at your neighbor's glass house, while too living in your very own glass house and he is wondering if in doing so, have you cracked any of your own walls.
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Old March 30th, 2017, 06:02 AM   #17
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Thanks, but I'm a literal person, so figurativespeak is not that effective with me.

Also, had he said "glass house" rather than "glass wall", it may have been better received.
Your lack of creative thought may very well underlie the general inability to grasp complex communication.
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Old April 2nd, 2017, 04:37 PM   #18
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'
When I was in high school, in an access of enthusiasm [enthusiasm! always dangerous!] for ancient symbolism, I laboriously drew a swastika on a placard and tacked it up in my room. A Jewish friend went ballistic when he saw it.

I very reasonably noted that it was not at all like the Nazi swastika, since it was four-square, and not in rotation, and that it was oriented counter-clockwise, and not deasil, like the Nazi tetraskelion. Surely he knew that it was a revered symbol among Native Americans and in Japan, China and India?

Somehow, none of my instruction improved his mood.

But that was long ago. I am wiser now, and no longer unintentionally offend people. · ·
.
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Old April 5th, 2017, 05:21 PM   #19
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So what if Spanish becomes a second language along with English? Educated and cultured people consider knowing a second language to be a plus, not a minus.

And why this obsession with assimilation? Why in Heaven's name must everyone "assimilate"? Are Americans punctilious about assimilating with other cultures when they go to live overseas?

Life is not necessarily easy for people when they are thrust into a different language and a different culture. I, for one, am willing to cut them a little slack. Go live in Japan or Germany, and see if you assimilate completely! At times, I suspect that you may sink so low as to have a craving for a hamburger and a chocolate shake! Perhaps also, a craving for a little conversation in English.

In this century, national cultures will explode over the world in multitudinous and complex diasporas, much like the Diaspora of the Jews. If people think that they can stop this process, they are just as foolish as King Canute commanding the tide to turn back. People must get used to living cheek-by-jowl with other cultures, and they would be wise to learn how to get along with each other.

The true glory of the Jews is not their fossil, Bronze Age religion, but rather, the Diaspora. If there is any hope in the future for preserving human variety, it lies in the human race following the Jews into many diasporas. Only in that way can people live all over the globe and still preserve their national cultures. The Jews can feel justly proud of pioneering this way of life.

Unfortunately, with that historic sense of bad timing for which the Jews seem to have such a talent, too many Jews have sold their true birthright for the pottage of an outdated, national homeland. I hope that finally the Zionists will come to their senses, and re-join the rest of the human race in the coming Diaspora of the Nations.
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Old April 5th, 2017, 05:51 PM   #20
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To repeat:

We do not live in an agricultural feudal era, but rather, in a post-industrial Information Age. Messages flash from one end of the globe to the other in a fraction of a second; we can travel to the antipodes faster and in greater comfort than a royal messenger could ride from Paris to Provence in Old France. Welcome to the Global Village!

Already, the nation-state is pretty obsolete. The Roman Empire, for a long time, preserved the forms of the Republic, but the practice of power was utterly different. Likewise, we preserve the forms of the Old Constitution, but the National Security State and the military-industrial conspiracy render the real situation utterly different from anything envisioned by the Founding Fathers. I will not regard the passing of the present system with any regret.

The nation-state was essentially a creature of the 19th and 20th centuries. It scarcely existed before then, and is even now passing away in this century. I suppose it may continue to have some use as a postal code.

In the Middle Ages, there were a couple of centers of pan-European power: the Empire and the Church. Otherwise, all the other centers of significant power existed below the level of the nation-state.

In our time, we see the fanning out of national cultures all over the globe, in intricate networks of associations. We see innumerable supra-national organizations and informal groups. Concomitantly, various groupings below the level of the nation are gathering power and influence; one thinks of Bretons and Ocitans in France, Basques and Catalonians in Spain, Scots and Welsh in Britain.

All of these are inexorably drawing power away from the obsolete nation-state.

I live in a small city which contains an incredible number of clubs, cliques, associations and action groups. I marvel at the intricate, shifting, dynamic network which they form; yet my city is not a warring, chaotic mess. On the whole, it functions pretty well. What is true of my city can be true of the new world which we are entering. It may degenerate into chaos, but it is not inevitable that it do so.
.
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