The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

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doodle
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by doodle » Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:30 pm

I guess I don't understand conservativism as a philosophy. It seems to me like trying to drive a car by looking in the rearview mirror. Sure, there are lessons from the past that can be carried into the future, but our world has fundamentally changed...we have satellites, and nuclear bombs, and nearly instantaneous global travel and trade and communications. Vast corporate power and influence, a burgeoning population and global environmental and resource issues. These are issues that from my perspective require new problem solving ideas. The enlightenment philosophers projected a radical new idea onto humanity to solve issues with entrenched monarchies and feudal societal structures. They were hardly conservative. Likewise, we need to look to new ideas today to solve the issues of today....issues our founding fathers could have never conceived of.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by Tortoise » Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:38 pm

The core philosophical divide seems to be between individualism and collectivism.

New problems in the world created by new technology and social trends can be solved in innovative ways even if one's core philosophy is individualism. Solutions to the new problems can be considered in the context of maximizing individual freedom. They are not mutually exclusive.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by pmward » Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:42 pm

doodle wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:30 pm
I guess I don't understand conservativism as a philosophy. It seems to me like trying to drive a car by looking in the rearview mirror. Sure, there are lessons from the past that can be carried into the future, but our world has fundamentally changed...we have satellites, and nuclear bombs, and nearly instantaneous global travel and trade and communications. Vast corporate power and influence, a burgeoning population and global environmental and resource issues. These are issues that from my perspective require new problem solving ideas. The enlightenment philosophers projected a radical new idea onto humanity to solve issues with entrenched monarchies and feudal societal structures. They were hardly conservative. Likewise, we need to look to new ideas today to solve the issues of today....issues our founding fathers could have never conceived of.
There are always those that desire change (liberals) and those that resist change (conservatives). I think you do need both to balance each other out in a way. It's kind of a yin and yang when it's functioning properly. We always will move forward. Change will always happen. We will never go back to the way things used to be. So in a way, the battle is already won. *Spoiler Alert* the liberal side always has and always will win eventually. You can go back to any point in history and see this is true. But the words liberal and conservative are moving goal posts relative to the present day. Todays conservatism is yesterdays liberalism, and todays liberalism is tomorrows conservatism. So while the liberal view point always will win out eventually, I think the conservatives when they are doing their job properly help keep the dreamy ideological change makers from getting too carried away, help to slow the process down, help to bring up lessons learned in the past, and in turn help to ensure a safer transition from point A to point B.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by l82start » Mon Nov 23, 2020 5:11 pm

Tortoise wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:38 pm
The core philosophical divide seems to be between individualism and collectivism.

New problems in the world created by new technology and social trends can be solved in innovative ways even if one's core philosophy is individualism. Solutions to the new problems can be considered in the context of maximizing individual freedom. They are not mutually exclusive.
this..
the future is isn't as the liberals suggest destined for collectivism. we have a choice
and as old fashion and out of date (200+yrs) as individual freedom seems to the progressive, collectivism is seen as moving backwards toward tyranny to others
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by pmward » Mon Nov 23, 2020 6:17 pm

l82start wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 5:11 pm
Tortoise wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:38 pm
The core philosophical divide seems to be between individualism and collectivism.

New problems in the world created by new technology and social trends can be solved in innovative ways even if one's core philosophy is individualism. Solutions to the new problems can be considered in the context of maximizing individual freedom. They are not mutually exclusive.
this..
the future is isn't as the liberals suggest destined for collectivism. we have a choice
and as old fashion and out of date (200+yrs) as individual freedom seems to the progressive, collectivism is seen as moving backwards toward tyranny to others
You need balance, imo. You need a mix of both individual freedoms and collectivism. You need a mix of both top down and bottom up. If you go to either extreme you wind up with oppression. The answer is not black or white, it's grey.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by l82start » Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:03 pm

i have no problem with a mix, i disagree that it must be top down however, bottom up collectivism is far more in keeping with the American individualism ethos.. if we take care of ourselves, our family, our friends, our neighbors, our community, our towns and city's, the need for some uncountable, far away, and more often than not misguided (if not incompetent and criminal) bureaucracy would largely vanish..
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by pmward » Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:39 pm

l82start wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:03 pm
i have no problem with a mix, i disagree that it must be top down however, bottom up collectivism is far more in keeping with the American individualism ethos.. if we take care of ourselves, our family, our friends, our neighbors, our community, our towns and city's, the need for some uncountable, far away, and more often than not misguided (if not incompetent and criminal) bureaucracy would largely vanish..
Right, but the whole thread we had last week was my argument about why full on individualism did not work in the past and would not work in the future. You need the top down aspect as well. We can even step out of government and look at companies. What well run super successful company only has a bottom up structure? None. They need the top down direction to make sure each team in the company is functioning properly within the whole. Now you also need your bottom up, this is where a lot of innovation happens. You want the individuals to be empowered and able to create. But you need the top down to ensure they are spending their valuable innovation time on the things that benefit the company as a whole, make sure there's no redundancies, make sure nobody is stepping on each others toes, that everyone is playing fair, that everyone has equal benefits, and that everyone is following the mission statement and ideals of the company. Any well run company has a good mix of top down and bottom up. Likewise, any good government has a good mix of top down and bottom up. You go all bottom up, or all top down, and bad things happen... usually in the form of tyranny and oppression. We spent a great deal of time last week talking about the tyrannies and oppression that existed back when our country was a small mostly bottom up country. That's really all the proof I need to prove that point. It's just like how people can point to the failures of communism in the past for why a full top down approach also fails. On paper, both extremes can sound quite compelling. In actual practice, far from it. Now the real interesting question that is just stuffed full of wonderful nuance is not the black and white which is better, but what is the proper mix of both? What shade of grey is ideal? At what point is the grey too dark, and at what point is the grey too light? I don't think there is a definitive answer. I do know that neither extreme is good. I don't know what the exact Goldilocks mix of both is.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by Tortoise » Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:00 pm

It's incorrect to say or imply that individualism means there should only be individual freedom and no collective constraints, or vice versa. (That's not meant to be a strawman, pmward. It's how I interpret the "black or white" accusation in your last couple of posts.)

Individualism simply means the priority should be on individual freedom as much as possible. In some cases, yes, individual freedom has to take a back seat to a collective constraint in order for society to function properly and smoothly.

One example would be the fact that even the individualistic founders of the U.S. knew that some collective constraint was needed. It's why they formed a government and not just a private business agreement.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by tomfoolery » Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:04 pm

pmward wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:39 pm
You need the top down aspect as well. We can even step out of government and look at companies. What well run super successful company only has a bottom up structure? None. They need the top down direction to make sure each team in the company is functioning properly within the whole. Now you also need your bottom up, this is where a lot of innovation happens. You want the individuals to be empowered and able to create. But you need the top down to ensure they are spending their valuable innovation time on the things that benefit the company as a whole, make sure there's no redundancies, make sure nobody is stepping on each others toes, that everyone is playing fair, that everyone has equal benefits, and that everyone is following the mission statement and ideals of the company. Any well run company has a good mix of top down and bottom up.
As most liberals have reminded me, just because a person is a good businessman doesn’t mean they’ll make a good president. A country is not run like a business.

And I would agree on the last part of that sentiment.

The difference is if a company takes a top down approach that sucks, it goes out of business. If the government takes a top down approach that fails, the country collapses.

If a company takes a top down approach, and the employees, board of directors, and shareholders disagree, then the top down approach is abandoned. If a government takes a top down approach and the citizens and government employees disagree, they’re forced to comply at gunpoint and threat of execution for the greater good.

If the company’s top down approach isn’t working, the board of directors can call an emergency meeting and fire the CEO in a few hours. If the country’s top down approach isn’t working, let’s spend billions of dollars to campaign for a new government, wait 4 years, and replace the leaders then.

Personally, I’m not a fan of top down governments and I can’t think of any country it’s worked. Soviet Union? China? Venezuela? Cuba? North Korea?

As far as needing a balance, that sounds as ridiculous as smoking one cigarette each morning with a multivitamin so you can balance the healthy with the unhealthy since too much healthy will make you less healthy.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by pmward » Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:10 pm

Tortoise wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:00 pm
It's incorrect to say or imply that individualism means there should only be individual freedom and no collective constraints, or vice versa. (That's not meant to be a strawman, pmward. It's how I interpret the "black or white" accusation in your last couple of posts.)

Individualism simply means the priority should be on individual freedom as much as possible. In some cases, yes, individual freedom has to take a back seat to a collective constraint in order for society to function properly and smoothly.

One example would be the fact that even the individualistic founders of the U.S. knew that some collective constraint was needed. It's why they formed a government and not just a private business agreement.
For definition in my black and white analogy. When I say individualism or collectivism I'm looking at the most extreme form of both. So basically, the most extreme individualism would be that fully "bottom up" libertarian/anarchist like government with no Federal government and all local bottom up governance. Collectivism at its most extreme is basically communism. Complete top down, master planning, and all the inflexibilities and fragilities those bring.

So what you've described as your ideal is a shade of grey. It's probably a lot of white and just a little smidgen of black mixed together. I still personally think it's too light of a shade of grey, but this is where all that wonderful nuance I mentioned comes in. Also, there's the fact that both bottom up and top down systems have complimentary strengths and weaknesses. Neither strategy is all strength or all weakness. So how do you mix the two together just enough to negate the weaknesses of the other, without also watering down the strengths? It's a very complex subject.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by pmward » Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:14 pm

tomfoolery wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:04 pm
As far as needing a balance, that sounds as ridiculous as smoking one cigarette each morning with a multivitamin so you can balance the healthy with the unhealthy since too much healthy will make you less healthy.
Well considering that once again nobody has yet refuted the problems I identified in the other thread about the issues in our countries past when it was more bottom down... you can't really call it healthy. Was slavery healthy? Was the genocide of the native Americans healthy? Was the discrimination of women healthy? Would any of those things existed if there was enough top down enforcing the actual words of the constitution to balance out the bottom up? No it wouldn't have.
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Re: The New Republican Populism (personal Trump references not allowed)

Post by glennds » Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:14 pm

Tortoise wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:00 pm
It's incorrect to say or imply that individualism means there should only be individual freedom and no collective constraints, or vice versa. (That's not meant to be a strawman, pmward. It's how I interpret the "black or white" accusation in your last couple of posts.)

Individualism simply means the priority should be on individual freedom as much as possible. In some cases, yes, individual freedom has to take a back seat to a collective constraint in order for society to function properly and smoothly.

One example would be the fact that even the individualistic founders of the U.S. knew that some collective constraint was needed. It's why they formed a government and not just a private business agreement.
I think that's a valid point i.e. not one in lieu of the other, but a hierarchy of one having priority over the other. The two are not always in a tug of war.
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