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Author Topic: The modern Liberal mindset explained!  (Read 2514 times)
G M
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« on: March 29, 2007, 09:40:12 PM »

http://littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/?entry=24942_Eva...tage_Foundation&only
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2007, 06:49:54 AM »

It took me a while to get around to this.  Frankly I anticipated a bit of a screed, but actually found the talk to be thoughtful.
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Stray Dog
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« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2007, 09:49:00 AM »

Hey is this guy wearing Paratroopers wings on his lapel?
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Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam.

(I have a catapult. Give me all the money, or I will fling an enormous rock at your head.)
G M
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« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2007, 10:26:47 AM »

That's what they look like to me.
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buzwardo
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« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2007, 01:18:01 PM »

City Journal
The Big White Lie

Andrew Klavan
Spring 2007
The thing I like best about being a conservative is that I don’t have to lie. I don’t have to pretend that men and women are the same. I don’t have to declare that failed or oppressive cultures are as good as mine. I don’t have to say that everyone’s special or that the rich cause poverty or that all religions are a path to God. I don’t have to claim that a bad writer like Alice Walker is a good one or that a good writer like Toni Morrison is a great one. I don’t have to pretend that Islam means peace.

Of course, like everything, this candor has its price. A politics that depends on honesty will be, by nature, often impolite. Good manners and hypocrisy are intimately intertwined, and so conservatives, with their gimlet-eyed view of the world, are always susceptible to charges of incivility. It’s not really nice, you know, to describe things as they are.

This is leftism’s great strength: it’s all white lies. That’s its only advantage, as far as I can tell. None of its programs actually works, after all. From statism and income redistribution to liberalized criminal laws and multiculturalism, from its assault on religion to its redefinition of family, leftist policies have made the common life worse wherever they’re installed. But because it depends on—indeed is defined by—describing the human condition inaccurately, leftism is nothing if not polite. With its tortuous attempts to rename unpleasant facts out of existence—he’s not crippled, dear, he’s handicapped; it’s not a slum, it’s an inner city; it’s not surrender, it’s redeployment—leftism has outlived its own failure by hiding itself within the most labyrinthine construct of social delicacy since Victoria was queen.

This is no small thing. To rewrite the rules of courteous behavior is to wield enormous power. I see it in Southern California, in the bleeding heart of leftism, where I live. I’ve been banned from my monthly poker game, lost tennis partners, lost friends—not because I’m belligerent but because I’ve wondered aloud if the people shouldn’t be allowed to make their own abortion laws, say, or if the world might not be a better place without the UN.

It’s a rotten feeling. I sometimes think that I’d rather be deemed evil than a boor. Wickedness has some flair to it, even a whiff of radicalism. If you molest a child, there’s always a chance that you can get the ACLU to defend you as a cultural innovator. But if you make a remark at table about the destructive social effects of broken homes and then discover that your dinner partner is a divorcée—trust me, you feel like a real louse. It’s manners, not morals, that lay the borderlines of our behavior.

This, I believe, is the reason conservative politicians so often lose their nerve, why they back down in debate even when they’re clearly right. No one wants to be condemned as a brute—especially not conservatives, who still retain some vague memory of how worthy it is to be a lady or gentleman.

And because we’ve allowed leftists to define the language of political good manners—don’t say women are less scientific; don’t remark that black people bear the same responsibility for their actions as whites; don’t point out that the gunman was a Muslim, it’s not nice—the sort of person willing to speak the truth isn’t always the sort of person you want to be seen with. It sometimes takes, I mean, a Rush Limbaugh or a Sean Hannity to withstand the obloquy attached to stating the facts of the matter. If these people in their public personae seem harsh to more genteel conservatives, it may be because it requires that extra dollop of aggression to shatter the silence created by the Left’s increasingly elaborate sensitivities.

Still, mannerly as we would rather be, truth-telling continues to be both compelling and ultimately satisfying. There is, after all, something greater than courtesy. “Firmness in the right,” Lincoln called it, “as God gives us to see the right.” We find ourselves at a precarious moment in an endeavor of great importance: namely, the preservation of Western rationalism and liberty. It does mankind no good to allow so magnificent an enterprise to slip away merely for fear of saying the wrong thing.

http://www.city-journal.org/html/17_2_diarist.html
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buzwardo
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« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2007, 01:33:14 PM »

Doctors refuse to fix builder's broken ankle unless he quits smoking
By CHRIS BROOKE - More by this author »Last updated at 07:40am on 14th September 2007
 Comments (18)

A man with a broken ankle is facing a lifetime of pain because a Health Service hospital has refused to treat him unless he gives up smoking.

John Nuttall, 57, needs surgery to set the ankle which he broke in three places two years ago because it did not mend naturally with a plaster cast.

Doctors at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro have refused to operate because they say his heavy smoking would reduce the chance of healing, and there is a risk of complications which could lead to amputation.

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FUMING: John Nuttall was refused ankle operation because he smokes


They have told him they will treat him only if he gives up smoking. But the former builder has been unable to break his habit and is now resigned to coping with the injury as he cannot afford private treatment.

He is in constant pain from the grating of the broken bones against each other and has been prescribed daily doses of morphine.

Mr Nuttall, of Newlyn, Cornwall, broke the ankle in a fall in 2005. Initially he refused surgery because he had caught MRSA at a different hospital four years earlier, and was terrified of history repeating itself.

He hoped the fractured bones would knit together with a standard plaster cast to immobilise his ankle.

But six months and three plaster casts later, it became clear that an operation to pin the bones was the only solution.

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PAIN: John Nuttall was given morphine as treatment


However, the hospital told Mr Nuttall, who no longer works because of smoking-related chest problems, that he would have to give up smoking before an operation could be carried out.

Mr Nuttall said: '"I am in agony. I have begged them to operate but they won't. I have tried my hardestto give up smoking but I can't. I got down to ten a week at one point but they said that was not good enough.

"I spent 12 months trying to give up and used patches and everything, but nothing works.

"I have smoked for over 40 years and it's not going to happen.

"We were brought up at a time when cigarette advertisements were everywhere and there were no warnings.

"I want to warn other smokers that they could be denied medical treatment and there is nothing we can do about it.

"I have paid my dues as a taxpayer-and now the NHS won't treat me."

Mr Nuttall, who is single, uses a walking stick to get around and fears his bones will now be so 'calcified' that an operation would not work even if he were allowed to have it.

"It is very painful," he said. "If I walk more than a few steps I can feel it grinding."

A spokesman for the hospital trust said: "Smoking has a very big influence on the outcome of this type of surgery, and the healing process would be hindered significantly."

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=481617&in_page_id=1770&in_page_id=1770&expand=true
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Maxx
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« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2007, 01:50:06 PM »

Wait..People actually still smoke?? Wow.. undecided
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2007, 06:55:00 AM »

SCIENCE JOURNAL
By ROBERT LEE HOTZ   


 
 
 
 
     
   
 
 

 
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MIND & MONEY GAMES: RECOMMENDED READING

 
-- by Robert Lee Hotz
 
In the first full-length book on neuroeconomics, "Decisions, Uncertainty, and the Brain: The Science of Neuroeconomics," New York University's Paul Glimcher argues that economic theory may provide a new way to think about the brain and behavior.
* * *
In the Journal of Economic Literature, economists Colin Camerer, George Loewenstein and Drazen Prelec lay out the case for using neuroscience to revolutionize traditional economics.
* * *
In "Nature: An Economic History," Geerat Vermeij, an evolutionary biologist at the University of California at Davis, explores biology, economics and geology to show how processes common to all economic systems govern evolution.
* * *
The "Handbook of Functional Neuroimaging of Cognition," edited by neuroscientists Roberto Cabeza and Alan Kingstone, explains the imaging techniques used to study the neural basis of cognition.
* * *
Until the 17th century, people thought the human brain was a curious lump of animate curds. Its discovery as the seat of human consciousness is a whodunit of science history told by Carl Zimmer in "Soul Made Flesh."
* * *
The Web site for the Canaan Children's Home in Uganda.
* * *
The web site for the Caltech Imaging Center.


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Charting the Agony
Of a Brain as It
Struggles to Be Fair
October 12, 2007; Page B1
At the Canaan Children's Home in southern Uganda, the orphans had no idea that a woman inside a brain scanner 9,400 miles away was playing mind games with their food.

The children were the focus of a brain experiment under way at the California Institute of Technology to explore the neural anatomy of indecision. With the push of a button, the woman in the Caltech scanner could distribute meals at the orphanage more fairly, but only by taking food off the table, not by serving more portions.

While she pondered, the 12-ton fMRI scanner at the university's brain-imaging center traced the synaptic patterns of equity, remorse and reward in her brain. In these riptides of neural currents, the researchers sought clues to human variables missing from the mathematics of conventional economics.

NEUROECONOMICS AND DECISIONS

 
 
Ever wonder why you make such bad investment decisions? What happens in your head when logic and rationality take a backseat? Share your thoughts with Robert Lee Hotz and other readers on the Science forum.The quirky experiment exemplifies the new field of neuroeconomics. Behavioral economist Ming Hsu and his Caltech colleagues combined financial-decision theories and medical brain-imaging tools to analyze the brain as a living engine of economics, one fine-tuned by evolution through eons of foraging for scarce resources. These scientists studied hard choices, documenting how competing networks of neurons unconsciously shape the way we buy, sell, risk and trust.

During this test, the scientists wanted to see how synapses valued fairness against the desire to avoid harming others. The dilemma can arise when a limited resource is distributed unequally, and the only way to help one person comes at another's expense -- whether in profit sharing, setting affirmative-action policy, or rationing health care.

In the summer of 2006, when they organized the test, Dr. Hsu and his colleagues could imagine no more agonizing choice, within the constraints of medical ethics, than to ask people to take food away from orphans in a war-torn African country.

An online search led them to the Web site for the Canaan Children's Home, a one-story green building with a clinic next door, set amid the trees and chicken coops a half hour's drive from Jinja, Uganda. As of April, 100 children were living there, many of them orphaned by AIDS, said Frank P. Crane in Richmond, Va., chairman of the Uganda Missions Action Committee, which monitors the home's finances.

It was the winsome faces of those children -- whose photographs had been posted on the Web site to solicit charitable donations -- that caught Dr. Hsu's science eye. Here was the perfect experimental device for stirring the turmoil of indecision, the researchers agreed.

The team next contacted Tom Roberts, an attorney in Richmond, who created the Web site. He gave consent for the photos to be used. Because there would be no contact with the children and no actual consequences of the experiment to the orphanage, "I said help yourself," Mr. Roberts recalled.

Dr. Hsu wanted the pictures to heighten the realism of the experiment.

In the scanner, each volunteer could equalize how a fixed amount of donated meals was shared between orphans -- but only by taking away meals from those who had more than others and thereby reducing the total number of meals given to the orphanage. The allocation of meals was sometimes fair, sometimes not. "We manipulated the allocations and how much could be taken away," Dr. Hsu said.

To trigger the brain behavior, the 26 volunteers had to believe their decisions really would affect orphans being denied their seat at a groaning board of plenty where others feasted. So, the experimenters made them all study a 10-page brochure with pictures of 60 orphans.

In 36 rounds of testing, each subject had 10 seconds to choose the lesser of two evils: Allow some children to keep more than their fair share of meals or take away their food to eliminate inequity.

It was a measure of the economics of morality. Dr. Hsu made the inequities more or less severe by changing the number of meals donated to different groups of children. That provoked patterns of neural activation that revealed the brain's distaste for injustice and its willingness if the disparity was wide enough -- in one case, one child receiving five times more than another -- to punish the rich by putting them on short rations. To redress the extremes, people were willing to confiscate meals even when it hurt the orphanage as a whole, Dr. Hsu, now at the University of Illinois, reported recently at a meeting of the Society for Neuroeconomics in Nantasket, Mass.

As a test of economic theory against the benchmark of the brain, the Uganda experiment is one subtle brushstroke in an emerging self-portrait of the mind, generated by floods of new brain data. Indeed, neuroeconomics itself is still so new that cultural anthropologists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and New York University are documenting the folkways of this nascent network of scholars.

"The payout for this in economics may not come for 20 years," said University of Zurich economist Ernst Fehr. "Economics is a slow science."

WSJ
• Email me at sciencejournal@wsj.com. For a discussion on this column, go to the Science Journal forum.
 
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