List make a list of "Inconvenient Truths".
Big box stores like Walmart and Target have been a big reason for the decline of small business and Middle America.
However, the sad fact is, most Americans these days cannot afford to shop anywhere but Walmart and Target. Small, family owned shops simply cost too much for the average American to be able to routinely shop at them.
So it's Walmart and the Dollar Store.
Big corporations, unregulated, will steal pensions, off shore any and all positions and give the CEOs and his cronies huge raises/bonuses
I see we had the annual Thanksgiving non-event again this year...WalMart workers are going on strike!!!!
Yawn. Never happens but the news outlets fall for it every fucking year like clockwork.
[quote]However, the sad fact is, most Americans these days cannot afford to shop anywhere but Walmart and Target. Small, family owned shops simply cost too much for the average American to be able to routinely shop at them.
...and that's because so many work at places like Wal*Mart, who pay substandard wages with no benefits. It's so bad that EACH Wal*Mart store requires, on average, HALF A BILLION DOLLARS in tax-payer subsidies, in the form of food-stamps and other welfare programs for Wal*Mart employees.
Meanwhile, the family that owns Wal*Mart has wealth equal to the bottom 40% of all Americans.
The Democratic Party is Republican Lite and real Liberals are without meaningful representation in the federal government.
Americans really are too naive and distracted to stop Wall Street from eventually bankrupting the country.
The Patriot Act, enacted by Bush and strengthened by Obama, was the last nail in the coffin to any semblance of real freedom we had left in this sham of a country.
I have a small pet supply store and without even trying our prices match or beat big box stores.
America is the world bully.
We liberals want to emulate European style economic policy yet all of their countries besides Germany and Scandinavia have appalling job creation rates and deficits.
If you think 8% unemployment rates are bad try 30% unemployment like Spain, Italy and Greece have.
Riots are not uncommon in these countries.
I'm not advocating GOP brand unregulated Capitalism but there has to be another way....
Higher income tax rates on the rich is wildly unfair.
To whom, R10?
Just cancelling the Bush era tax cuts still in effect, would balance the budget.
To the rich, of course!
R9 is too stupid to understand that the reason for that is GOP-style "Austerity", which doesn't work, as seen in the European economy where it has been tried.
The "other way" is the way Obama has proposed, though his way is very moderate. Paul Krugman has the right plan, but nobody's listening to him.
Actually that isn't true, R12. You'd need to raise revenues above and beyond repeal of all Bush Tax Cuts, due to the recession. So you'd not only have to let them all expire (and return the estate tax to what it was under Clinton too), but also pass the Buffett Rule, and pass the American Jobs act and Veterans Jobs act to stimulate the economy... prime the pump, so to speak... so that revenues picked up enough.
You'd also need to trim the military budget and Department of Homeland Security budget, which have both BALOONED over the last decade.
American companies, Wall Street, and our government's unwillingness to protect American jobs are responsible for making China the economic powerhouse it is today.
Americans are hooked on cheap goods, cheap food, and free music to the point where they resist paying a fair price for anything.
American employers bitch that no one has the skills for a high-tech world, but don't want to invest a dime in training anyone.
America is full of depressed, inert people. That's half the reason so many of them are fat.
[quote]We liberals want to emulate European style economic policy yet all of their countries besides Germany and Scandinavia have appalling job creation rates and deficits.
Incorrect. Huffington Post did an article about the 10 most prosperous places to live.
See how socialism is creating the most prosperous countries?
That article gives no reasons for each of those ten countries. Ireland was doing brilliantly but it was hit hard by the recession and everything costs a fortune in the republic.
Even though President Obama has come out, so to speak, in favor of marriage equality, a large majority of Democratic politicians and nearly all Republicans oppose it.
Approximately 25% of openly gay people in America are Republican and vote Republican, and will continue to do so.
A majority of New York City will be under water in 50 years unless we spend tens, if not hundreds, of billions of dollars constructing an Amsterdam-like system of dams around it.
The "American Empire" as we know it ended as soon as the economy collapsed in 2008. The remainder of the century will see China's ascent as the dominant global superpower, followed by India.
We aren't far away from the point where more "Japanese" cars are made in America than "American" cars.
earrings+caftans=not the best saturday night
We'll see about that R20.
Americans have raised drug addicts. Now there is a pill for every mood swing or unpleasant feeling you have. Giving small children drugs to calm them down at three- that's disgusting. We are a nation of addicts( food, sex, drugs, gambling, shopping, fame) and it poisons all the other things we do. Including destroying a great democracy.
American educational system is in deep shit, except when it comes to postgraduate studies which actually provide good training for foreign-born talent.
OP, you are totally wrong. Americans could still shop at local stores if they budgeted properly and didn't spend all their money on shit they don't need.
Unfortunately, Americans are drawn to low prices and addicted to consumption. Since Wal-Mart has the ability to keep prices low, people shop there ignoring local businesses and end up destroying their communities. Go look at any Wal-Mart shopper's house and I guarantee they will have a bunch of shit they don't need, whether it's plastic crap toys for the kids, a fancy TV, new car, knick-knacks, Apple products, kitchen gadgets that are completely unnecessary.
We're addicted to stuff and convenience. If we were smart we would buy less and buy local.
[quote]Go look at any Wal-Mart shopper's house and I guarantee they will have a bunch of shit they don't need, whether it's plastic crap toys for the kids, a fancy TV, new car, knick-knacks, Apple products
Oh, please. Walmart shoppers can't afford Apple products and fancy TVs! Those people shop at Target.
[quote]The remainder of the century will see China's ascent as the dominant global superpower, followed by India.
China and India will never be true superpowers in the world because their infrastructures are so rotted and corrupt that they can never support the sort of nation building and diplomatic muscle flexing that the West has.
Completely agree with r25. I will add that if products were made built to last we wouldn't need to replace them so frequently. But there is no money in that for manufacturers.
[quote]Higher income tax rates on the rich is wildly unfair.
It's very funny, people who think this way. The fact that one person makes in one hour what another makes in one year is wildly unfair.
Life is unfair.
Somebody who makes 100 million a year won't have their quality of life decrease in any way if they pay 20 million in taxes or we bump it up to 30 million. They will still have the exact same life unless they plan on spending everything in one year, which nobody does.
If they make 100 million, live on 10 million and pay 20 million in taxes (keeping 70 million in the bank), or if they live on 10 million and pay 30 million in taxes, (keeping 60 million in the bank), their life is the same.
Peak oil means peak jobs and peak wealth, too. The jobs are never going to return. Alternative energy sources are STILL dependent on oil. The techno-green revolution is NOT going to happen. Besides, nothing does what oil does. Oil can be made into things.
It's ending. For all. Your reality check is in the mail.
It's to the point where if someone says they were once a Boy Scout, one would not be wrong to assume that they were probably diddled at one point.
I think the illuminating point it makes that what is actually happening is a female culture enforce the end of a male culture where it happened as a matter of course, where it was often enjoyed by both parties, and - to a qualified degree - no one was any the worse for it, or indeed thought about it twice, is completely valid.
The assassination of President Kennedy was actually a coup by powerful banking and corporate interests intent on creating a two-tier economy with themselves making up the small but immensely wealthy top tier.
Ok, tinhats, what about the Illuminati, MK Ultra?
Actually the inconvenient truth about the JFK assassination is that one angry/insane idiot has the power to change the course of world history with one well-placed bullet. Another inconvenient truth is that we don't feel so badly about it when the change of course is for the better. People such as Oliver Stone still get all excited about JFK's assassination because LBJ took us into the nightmare that was Vietnam. 50 years later, how many people were still crying over McKinley's assassination? Very few, because secretly we feel ok that one man's murder put Teddy Roosevelt and a more progressive agenda in the White House. If we hadn't gone into Vietnam, maybe most Democrats would remember November 22 as a not-so-unhappy anniversary.
r31, whoever wrote that article is obviously a card-carrying member of [...] and you should be ashamed to have posted that as if it's even based in reality. A lot of bad things were accepted pre-60s.
It was once OK to lynch black people. It was once OK to beat your wife and children until they were black and blue. It was once OK to molest young boys and girls. Now it is not. If that's because we've moved into a "female culture", then so fucking be it.
Our economy is not going to recover unless we bring our manufacturing jobs back from overseas. That's going to require protectionist trade policies, and that's not going to happen.
No, R36, we wouldn't because we aren't sick fucking halfwits.
Manufacturing jobs are never coming "back" to the US. We need to examine what we do well in this country, and work on making it better, protecting it, and nurturing it. We make entertainment that is the envy of the world, and our politicians are hell bent on seeing the money drain from the industry as pirates literally take the dollars out of producers' pockets. I guess those liberals in Hollywood don't deserve any of the same protections that we've afforded banking and oil.
And, then there's education. We have the best system in the world, particularly higher education, and yet schools are being bled dry, we blame teachers' unions for problems caused by Wall Street, and education is becoming so expensive that only the elites will be able to afford it in 30 years.
The Arab-Israeli conflict will never be resolved.
[quote]you should be ashamed to have posted that as if it's even based in reality.
LOL. The delicious irony of trying to shut down dissent on a thread devoted to it.
The 1970s when the world was opening up looks like the Enlightenment compared to the narrowed and rigorously policed consciousness that marks public discourse today. Everyone must toe the line. A few tame contrarian ideas are permitted, but no inconvenient truths. Because there are none. Only inconvenient lies. And those who espouse them will not be given air, but silenced, so that only agreed NewTruth shall be allowed. 1984 is right here: in the self-policing, group-reinforcement tweeting, battery chicken Stasi minds of participants on Datalounge.
[quote]China and India will never be true superpowers in the world because their infrastructures are so rotted and corrupt that they can never support the sort of nation building and diplomatic muscle flexing that the West has.
If you want to look at rotten and corrupt infrastructures, I'll point you to NYC during the '70s and the Boss Tweed era. Those worked out pretty well.
Also, you're deluding yourself if you don't think our own government infrastructure isn't rotten to the core, thanks to lobbyists and state-level gerrymandering.
[quote]Our economy is not going to recover unless we bring our manufacturing jobs back from overseas.
No, our economy is not going to recover until we adopt a German-style system wherein we accept the fact that the cost of our human resources vastly exceeds that of other nations, and thus create products in the single most efficient manner possible. This is how the Japanese have maintained their car industry, if not their electronics one, even in the face of an eternal long-term recession going on nearly 20 years now.
The USA is Jesusland
Everything Americans believe about their country is false. In fact, the opposite of their beliefs is the truth.
"America is the biggest purveyor of violence on earth."
- this was true when MLK jr. had the courage to say this in the 1960s and it is even more true today.
WWII ended the Great Depression.
Will a WW3 end the current Great Depression-lite?
What R33 said!
Most of us are fake. Most people pretend to be something else in order to appease others or appeal to others. This goes for celebrities who have fake public images, ambitious career driven individuals, men and women trying to make their parents/spouses happy, and people with low self esteem crippled with insecurity.
When the right buttons are pushed we can be all killers, rapists, or try to satisfy our limitless greed.
We are all cannonfodder for the 1% (so better become one of them quick!).
The stories about aliens scare us, because if alien lifeforms do exist and they are able to travel to us they are a threat to our top spot at the food chain and humans most likely will be treated like they treated the enviroment, human slaves, pets, and the wildlife (= not very good!).
We are all racists, bigots, misogonists, etc. because [bold]even if we try [/bold] we cannot emphasize enough with other people's problems which are based on their race, religion, financial wealth, body type, gender, sexual identity, age, etc. Yes, some of us try, but at the end of the day they have their lives we have our own lives and problems to take care of.
Religion is a mind(fuck) drug that preys on people who are afraid of change and offer the service (paid through considerable donations) to support people to cling on to their fears and insecurities.
The media is hypnotizing people into submission and obedience (to buy, consume, believe certain things).
Governments are corrupt and cannot be changed in our lifetime, because there is too much opposition from members of the government to change the corrupt status quo. We can start now with the change, but only future generations [bold]may[/bold] benefit from it (if they don't fuck it up - which is very likely ... so why even set things in motion for change then? *sigh').
Most of us have a superior complex where we need other people to remain beneath us so we can look down on them.
R33, please translate this for me. I have no idea what it means:
[quote]I think the illuminating point it makes that what is actually happening is a female culture enforce the end of a male culture where it happened as a matter of course, where it was often enjoyed by both parties, and - to a qualified degree - no one was any the worse for it, or indeed thought about it twice, is completely valid.
First of all, what is the "it" that is making illuminating points?
Are you saying male culture was enjoyed by all, and that no one was any the worse for wear or thought twice about it?
Please tell me you don't believe it was a victimless culture or that its victims were all happy so all was well.
Most of us have no idea what we're talking about.
The article at the link is implying that there was an established culture to meet the needs of male sexuality and male adolescent curiosity, but it has been stigmatised by the rise of female culture since the 1970s, and created male sexual 'victims' where only a minority previously existed, with a culture of guilt and blame. Not an entirely uncommon thesis in sexology. See Levine etc.
Here's an easier way to state it as an Inconvenient Truth.
Most historical 'gay' icons, from Socrates to Da Vinci, to Whitman to Wilde, would today be on Sexual Offender lists and serving long sentences.
R54, as I'm sure you're well aware, many things were done historically that would be considered anti-social or illegal today. People used to think it was normal to keep slaves. Wives and children were legal chattel in some parts of the U.S. until fairly recently.
Mores shift and change and values fluctuate.
Allowing adults to prey on juveniles is not considered acceptable behavior in 2012. Those people you listed would be required to adhere to the law or they could go to jail. Their choice. I don't have a lot of hangups when it comes to behavior between consenting adults, but when you get kids involved that all changes. I don't like predators and I don't condone their behavior.
Global War is still the best way to end the coming American Depression 2.0.
The official explanations for several of the key events of 9/11 are physically impossible.
This thread is boring.
this thread is depressing.
I feel for you, r6.
It's so bad that EACH Wal*Mart store requires, on average, HALF A BILLION DOLLARS in tax-payer subsidies,"
While I agree that we are subsidizing the employees (& indirectly, Walmart), that $500 million per store number is ludicrous.
That's because that $500 million per store number is NOT correct, R61.
[quote]Most historical 'gay' icons, from Socrates to Da Vinci, to Whitman to Wilde, would today be on Sexual Offender lists and serving long sentences.
Correct me if I'm wrong but didn't Wilde serve serious time? And wasn't Socrates murdered? Or was that Plato?
CHinese food is not a convenient substitute for Mexican food
Socrates was sentenced to death by drinking hemlock for his outspoken and unpopular political opinions.
Plato died in his sleep of natural causes.
Wilde was sentenced and served to two years of hard labor for sodomy. Prison broke him and he never recovered physically. His legal problems bankrupted him so he had no money to fall back on.
This has been going on forever.
If you read history of retailing, you will find in the beginning of the 1900s, all the Mom & Pop stores were being put of business by A&P. Which was then put of of business by other grocers doing it better.
Remember Woolco, Shopper's World, WT Grant? They were the among the first discount stores. Put out by their own ineptness, by Kmart, Zayre, Venture. Of course Zayre and Venture are long gone, and Kmart only hangs on because Sears bought it out.
And now we have Target, (which interestingly enough was contracted severely in the 70s only to re-emerge 20 years later) and Walmart.
Remember Phar*Mor? That was a great discount "huge" drug store. But horrible business practices (worse than even WT Grant) did that one in.
History list hundreds of retailers that made it huge, for a while. Then went out of business. That is how it has always been and will be.
[quote]Correct me if I'm wrong but didn't Wilde serve serious time? And wasn't Socrates murdered? Or was that Plato?
Congratulations on the entire point going right over your head.
Which was that a very high proportion of so-called gay history is actually what would now be termed paederastic history. THAT'S the inconvenient whitewashed truth and elephant in the room of gay studies. While culture may change, human sexuality doesn't, and we have not only adopted attitudes and codes that are at odds with nature and human desire, but stifle all discussion that might suggest otherwise. Not least, we feel smug in the belief that it's all now tickity-boo, ignoring the fact that attitudes are constantly in flux.
And seriously: you don't know whether it was Socrates or Plato who was murdered? American education has always been puddle-deep, but what the fuck?!
[quote]While culture may change, human sexuality doesn't, and we have not only adopted attitudes and codes that are at odds with nature and human desire, but stifle all discussion that might suggest otherwise.
You poor thing. We won't let you fuck children any more. What will you do for kicks?
You piss me off when you act like you have some sort of inherent right to act on your "human desire." My "human desire" is to rid the earth of pedophiles. I'll start with you since according to your own rationale, I deserve to act on my "human desire."
Like all people who can't debate R69, you make it person, and assume waaay too much. And also, of course, prove my point that debate is the last thing you want. Point of fact: I've never desired anything other than men. Masculine solid men. However - similar to others here when the topic is perennially raised - as a gay adolescent I certainly entertained desires for men rather than my peergroup. And indeed, I actively seduced them. So while loathing predators even more than I loathe hysterics like yourself, I can clearly appreciate that the very recent construct that sex only starts at 18 is risible. An Inconvenient Truth was wanted, and I provided it. To me it's one of the most obvious - however offensive it's now perceived to be by a swathe of society. But that doesn't make it true. Take your pills. You're welcome.
Wrong, r66. His decadent lifestyle and ridiculous ego caused his fate.
Remember who sued whom.
I was going to post. No need, R70 said it perfectly.
Most of us have urges that are either antisocial or illegal. The difference is in whether we act on those urges.
A number of years ago, I wanted to kill someone, or at least hurt him badly. He had done something horrible to someone I cared about and I couldn't stand that he was going to go unpunished. I talked myself out of doing anything to him and walked away from the situation. I found out recently that he has punished himself. He weighs over 700 pounds, can barely breathe, can't walk and is confined to bed in his small apartment because of physical limitations. His sister, who refuses to help him, told me he is waiting to die.
Obama is not held back by Republicans. He chooses to "give in" to Republican positions because he shares them. Elizabeth Warren and Paul Krugman scare him.
[quote] His decadent lifestyle and ridiculous ego caused his fate.
Are you posting from 1897?! Most of us modern people believe that having sex with someone of the same sex is not a crime and is not "decadent."
Lord Queensbury was extremely dangerous: he was what we would now call a stalker, he had brandished guns at Wilde, followed him around London to shame him, tried to publicly humiliate him, had threatened violence. Wilde's taking him to court was hardly the decadent, ego-driven vengeance you're trying to make it out to be.
[quote]high proportion of so-called gay history is actually what would now be termed paederastic history
The age-difference in ancient Greek homosexual relationships was the same as that in heterosexual relationships: wealthy Greek men had young brides and/or young lovers. Acting like it's some sort of universal component of homosexuality to be attracted to underage men is retarded.
Nowadays we recognize that people--heterosexual and homosexual--may be attracted to young ADULTS, but it's pedophiles who are attracted to children. There is a huge difference. Why would you want to conflate them?
R68 = Sky Faerie Worshiper.
If only the Lords of the Ring Trilogy was written 2000 years ago, people would start conversations with "Bilbo Baggins" instead.
Internet porn and freely available anonymous sex (via manhunt, grindr, scruff, etc) are not only helping to spread disease but are also spiritually killing most gay men. They are also making the closet a more attractive option.
r31 that is freaky. the guy's pining for the good old days when sex play with your scoutmaster was the norm and nobody batted an eyelash? Before the culture became too woman-oriented and hysterical about protecting the children. It's all woman's fault!
He's obviously never dealt with anyone who lived through that as a kid.
The Feudal System never disappeared. It just became more clandestine. Hell, 18th Century French aristocrats would probably think 21st Century plutocrats were being a "tad too heavy handed".
We've replaced serfdom and the manorial estate with sub-standard, part-time wage work and government housing.
We are much less free than we were 30 years ago and getting more confined by the day. Surveillance culture is making the whole western world East Germany.
We are at the beginnings of migrations the likes of which are beyond imagination. Unless you can imagine half the population of Indian, Pakistan and China moving into Europe and Russia. It's going to happen.
Why will they be moving into Europe and Russia?
The high powered "lobbyists" of today are the "flatterers" of yesteryear.
The rest of us are peons with a diluted votes.
Beyond that, nothing's changed.
[quote]Why will they be moving into Europe and Russia?
Climate change induced pressures beyond mere heatwaves and crop losses. Both are rapidly running out of water. And the only way to escape is up. And there's nothing to stop them. Africa will follow.
Social media is a fool's paradise.
Privacy has become the ultimate luxury.
I will never understand some people's absolute obsession with privacy.
If you're not doing anything fucking wrong, why are you worried?
Also, the Facebook paranoia is hilarious. I highly doubt the government, the Illuminati, the Freemasons or whatever tinhat fantasy you've concocted really care if you took Binky the dog for a walk today.
Get a grip, Mary.
[quote]If you're not doing anything fucking wrong, why are you worried?
A favorite argument of fascists everywhere.
[quote]Obama is not held back by Republicans. He chooses to "give in" to Republican positions because he shares them. Elizabeth Warren and Paul Krugman scare him.
You scare me.
America subjects citizens of other nations to violence. Pakistan and Mexico subject their own citizens to mass violence far worse than America does.
Millions of Americans are traitors, swearing allegiance to a criminal foreign power and always putting its interests first, even when it is not in America's best jnterests.
R91 = David Duke
David Duke is one of them R92.
Elizabeth Warren doesn't scare him or he wouldn't have hired her in the first place.
R87 is clearly not black, is all I'm saying.
They do have the ability to track individuals all the time. No, they don't have an ability to track EVERYONE, but they do have the ability to track their actual and potential political opponents.
[quote]David Duke is one of them [R92].
Now I'm confused - which country are you talking about?
So much disinformation on this thread.
Sorry R9, European Union as a whole, has a higher employment rate than the USA. Why? Because socialism works, that's why. You have been fooled by fake American "unemployment" statistics.
R40, America will be manufacturing again one way or the other, probably as underpaid wage slaves to foreign masters. The fantasy that there is or ever will be a global preference for services over goods is something right wing economists made up in the 90s to get Americans to accept layoffs and pay cuts. It is not and never will be the future of global economic organization. As for the "entertainment" industry, the USA has never had a competitive advantage in any cultural product.
There will be no mass migration per R82. Indeed, DNA shows us there haven't been any true mass migrations, other than the European and African movement to the Americas, in ten thousand years.
[quote]There will be no mass migration per [R82]. Indeed, DNA shows us there haven't been any true mass migrations, other than the European and African movement to the Americas, in ten thousand years.
Clearly you could put your knowledge of history on a pin, R96. Actually, let's be blunt: the level of your ignorance is, like that of most Americans, of Mariana Trench depths.
Your own president Roosevelt, for example, by allowing Stalin to walk over him, is personally responsible for one of the greatest migrations: 12-14 million people displaced in 'The Flight' as the Germans call it. (Ironically, the only person who knew what was going on at Yalta was an exiled Russian aristocrat -- Prince Paul Chavchavadze, who had become an American officer and was standing directly behind Roosevelt as his translator. He could barely breathe such was his horror at the man's ignorance and how it was going to impact on millions of lives.)
But that's history. Right now the largest mass migration in human history is occurring - the 320 million Chinese moving from villages to the cities. Then there's the massive migrations going on Africa: in Sudan 6 million displaced, the Congo 2.5 million, Uganda 2 million. And those figures are wildly out of date.
In Mongolia, Africa and India the deserts are expanding at an terrifying rate: over two BILLION people are affected by desertification and land degradation.
We're not on the cusp of great migrations: it's happening right now. And if you also don't think it's going to impact on you, you're wrong. Unfortunately it's going to impact on us all, poor and rich.
Wherever there were tyrants, their habit of providing simply for themselves, of looking solely to their personal comfort and family aggrandizement, made safety the great aim of their policy, and prevented anything great proceeding from them. -- in their specious policy of complete isolation, is not to avoid sharing in the crimes of others, but to secure monopoly of crime to themselves- the license of outrage wherever they can compel, of fraud wherever they can elude, and the enjoyment of their gains without shame. – Thucydides
One of the reasons why the American education system is shit is because rich people (and many middle class people) send their children to private schools leaving public school parents without much clout.
Green initiatives are utterly pointless. It's too late to prevent disaster or even mildly mitigate it. You may as well make the most of the party while it lasts.