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Comment Re: Those who something, something (Score 1) 442

You said that arguing for a registry of Muslims (an argument which absolutely no one has actually made) would imply that a registry of Christians would also be appropriate. It wouldn't imply that, because only one of those religions has been responsible for millions of recent deaths.

Comment Re: Those who something, something (Score 1) 442

I was not as clear as I might have been about what I meant by "we". When I said "we" should try to do those things, I meant it in a broader sense than you and I as individuals. By "we" I meant whatever level of society wants to protect itself -- from coalitions of countries down to towns or neighborhoods. If individuals want to take part, even just by assigning blame, they should take the responsibility to understand the people they're blaming.

Comment Re: Those who something, something (Score 1) 442

And who gets "other"ed when someone says that "profound democratic immaturity" got Donald Trump elected? Is it the people who voted for Trump, or did the speaker other himself?

It is pretty funny to tell college students that other people are immature, though.

Comment Re: Those who something, something (Score 1) 442

Well, sure. We should try to understand who wants to harm our society or its members, why they want to do that, and how to stop them. It's entirely appropriate to assign blame, but when we do, we ought to be as narrow as possible so that we don't blame innocents or potential allies.

Which recent mass murders do you blame on hate groups? The Orlando nightclub shootings? Attacks on the Bataclan theater or Charlie Hebdo? Ambushes of police officers? The attack on the Family Research Center in Washington DC? (The last two do not meet the usual definition of mass murderer, but I can't think of many mass murderers in the US where either the killer or a group claimed that the killer had such an affiliation, or was inspired by the group.)

Comment Re: Those who something, something (Score 2, Insightful) 442

Will, it certainly starts with "othering" some group, blaming many or most of a society's problems on them, and trying to drum the rest of society into a bunker, "us or them" mentality regarding the out-of-group.

Whether that out-group is Muslims or traditional Americans is up for debate.

Comment Re: Why is this guy still talking (Score 1) 434

The repeal of Glass-Steagall was a recognition that banks had basically already figured out how to work around it, through money market accounts and similar products that fit either "investment bank" or "retail bank" regulation but effectively acted like the other. Even Sen. Glass realized (back in 1935) that the prohibition against mixing the two was harmful, but FDR and Congress killed Glass's efforts to repeal it.

At any rate, the repeal of Glass-Steagall had approximately zero effect on the formation or collapse of the housing or lending bubbles. It was a worldwide problem, Glass-Steagall was only law (and only repealed) in the US, the repeal was a long time before the collapse, and there were a lot of other factors -- like government re-interpretation of what constituted illegal red-lining -- that contributed much more.

Blaming the 2008-2009 recession on the repeal of Glass-Steagall is ahistorical and economically ignorant.

Comment Re: Real Issues, Misleading News (Score 1) 1037

Public opinion is formed in substantial part by ordinary people making praise or criticism, especially when they provide reasons that convince other people. I don't need to compel Twitter by law or write them a letter. You suggested that I provide an alternative service; I've been there and done that, and now you have the gall to ask what else I plan to do? Stop being an ass!

I submitted that Twitter claims to apply their rules equally to all people, but they seem to actually apply them with a heavy bias. You responded with a vapid argument that absolute neutrality is impossible, and that studies challenging Twitter's supposed neutrality might themselves have bias. That really does not engage with my claim, and it is the kind of argument that usually devolves from moral relativism: Instead of trying to observe relevant facts and assess what they mean, you just throw up your hands, give up, and pretend that observation and assessment are futile and only likely to reflect pre-existing biases.

Comment Re: Real Issues, Misleading News (Score 1) 1037

You droned on about how true neutrality was impossible, and how studies of bias are themselves biased, and so forth. That's why I said too much moral relativity has rotted your brain, and restated why my complaint wasn't about some Platonic ideal of neutrality.

I am not trying to compel Twitter to do anything. I am criticizing their heavy-handed bias and their dishonesty about it. Meanwhile, I've been programming for two of the largest IRC networks for longer than Twitter has existed. Neither has ever had a political bias in how they apply their (relatively few) rules about what can be said.

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