Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 20th Feb 2012 11:22 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems No matter where you look these days, there's a profound sense here in the west that the people no longer having any tangible control over what our governments do. Sure, we are allowed to vote every once in a while, but effectively, most of our countries are governed by backroom deals and corporate interests. If matters really do get out of hand, how do we fight this? Well, with technology of course!
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Speak for yourself!!!
by christianhgross on Mon 20th Feb 2012 11:50 UTC
christianhgross
Member since:
2005-11-15

I live in Switzerland and we have direct democracy! So if you feel there is a problem, the answer is not technology! The answer is that the people empower themselves! Transparency while nice results in things like the cones of silence.

And maybe, just maybe... people are voting for things that you don't like. Well then you are just SOL because that is how democracy works as the majority thinks all is great. And if you don't like it, that's just too bad for you.

What disgusts me with these kinds of comments is that it puts the blame on everybody except the VOTER! The government, and its laws are a representation of the people who voted for the government. If you don't like it demonstrate, vote, and create a party.

Fight the system! While I was not part of the 68 generation, at least they had the courage to want to change the system. They were willing to demonstrate peacefully and forced change.

I ask, are you part of the Pirate party? Are you beating the streets asking for people to vote for you? Or are you yet another whiner who says that it is corporations that are in control of everything...

Go away, you insult my intelligence on your political commentary...

BTW it is hard to change the world so I direct you the wisdom Evan Almighty:

God: How do we change the world?
Evan Baxter: One single act of random kindness at a time.
God: [spoken while writing A-R-K on ground with a stick] One Act, of, Random, Kindness.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by Brendan on Mon 20th Feb 2012 12:07 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
Brendan Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

What disgusts me with these kinds of comments is that it puts the blame on everybody except the VOTER!


If voters are given the choice between a poke in the eye and a punch in the arm; is it fair to blame the voter when one of these options must be chosen?

- Brendan

Reply Score: 14

RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!
by terrakotta on Mon 20th Feb 2012 12:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Speak for yourself!!!"
terrakotta Member since:
2010-04-21

Yes it is, voters can do more than just vote. It is their/our job to check up on what the government is doing, objecting when necessary by demonstrating (physically or virtually). Idly standing by while things happen to complain afterwards just seams weak and is no way to make the government know they only exist to serve the people instead of the other way around.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Alfman on Mon 20th Feb 2012 14:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

terrakotta,

I hope you are correct about Switzerland, but you fail to grasp just how badly democracy itself has been corrupted in some parts of the world. Slowly, but over a very long period, the US government has been corrupted to favor of entities who have more money and power, namely corporate interests.

Does Switzerland have "Gerrymandering"? Because that's the sort of legalized vote tampering that we have to deal with in the US. Also the US is actually more of a republic than a democracy, which affords us far fewer opportunities to vote our minds.

The US has a notoriously bad reputation for bullying the international community, however the US people never get the opportunity to vote on those issues. More likely than not they are initiated by powerful corporate ties within the US government. We don't even get to vote on issues as significant as using our own money to fund corporate bailouts.

I'm not saying the people cannot win, only that they are unlikely to do so from within a corrupt system that has been so heavily optimized to serve the elite. Hopefully our next government will explicitly decree that corporations are *not people* and that government exists only to serve the people.

Reply Score: 7

RE[3]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Laurence on Mon 20th Feb 2012 14:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Yes it is, voters can do more than just vote. It is their/our job to check up on what the government is doing, objecting when necessary by demonstrating (physically or virtually). Idly standing by while things happen to complain afterwards just seams weak and is no way to make the government know they only exist to serve the people instead of the other way around.

The UK (and America IIRC) demonstrated against the war on Iraq - yet we still went to war.
The UK demonstrated against student fees - yet student fees were still hiked up.
The whole world protested against SOPA - yet ACTA and other similar deals and legislation are still being pushed through.

So while I do agree with you in principle, I can't stop thinking that increasingly the general populous are powerless to change the government.

The problem we have is that it costs so much to run a successful campaign, that ultimately any leading party end up bought and paid for by corporate interest.

I'm not saying that all politicians are corrupt nor open to bribes, but the honest and selfless politicians just wouldn't have the funds to lead a successful campaign.

So ultimately we get stuck with a multitude of similar leaders pushing similar policies and we're left picking the lesser of n evils rather than the actual embodiment of a leader we'd aspire to have.

Edited 2012-02-20 15:01 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: Speak for yourself!!!
by StychoKiller on Thu 23rd Feb 2012 04:47 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Speak for yourself!!!"
StychoKiller Member since:
2005-09-20

"If voting actually changed anything, it would be made illegal!"

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Soulbender on Wed 22nd Feb 2012 08:39 UTC in reply to "RE: Speak for yourself!!!"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Why doesn't the voter do more to ensure more choices?

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Alfman on Wed 22nd Feb 2012 16:04 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

Soulbender,

"Why doesn't the voter do more to ensure more choices?"

Good question, I guess we have to look at what causes the lack of choice in the first place.

Here in NYS, we have elections where only one name appears on the ballot. It's not that no one else is running mind you, but that the ballot requirements make it difficult for "normal people" to run.

I found a very interesting blog about it.

http://www.r8ny.com/blog/larry_littlefield/the_signature_collectors...


Ordinary people simply don't have enough wealth to pay for a campaign, including an office, staff, advertising, etc. Heck most people wouldn't even be able to cover their own personal expenses if they took a leave from their jobs go campaigning (assuming their employer even allows them to take a leave of absence).

Around here there is talk of using public money and capping private funds to balance the playing field. Politicians obviously won't pass this, but even if they did I'm not sure that it would work. Upper classes are better prepositioned for running successful campaigns.


Another separate problem is the very real artificial incentive to vote for the least objectionable majority party that is likely to win, rather than the party one wants to win. This gives Democrats and Republicans a disproportionately large majority that they don't deserve at the ballots. This reinforces the lack of choice. Ideally we'd have a voting system which enables voters to vote for their actual preferred candidates without "throwing away" their vote. I think rank voting offers a good solution to this problem, and it would be a boon for real voter choice.


http://fortcollinsrankedvoting.org/rankedvoting.html

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Soulbender on Thu 23rd Feb 2012 06:23 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Speak for yourself!!!"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Here in NYS, we have elections where only one name appears on the ballot. It's not that no one else is running mind you, but that the ballot requirements make it difficult for "normal people" to run.


Wait, are you sure you live in NYS and not in North Korea?

Upper classes are better prepositioned for running successful campaigns.


Oh I see. Now, I'm not going to say that the political system commonly found in Europe is better, because it obviously has it's own set of flaws, but at least there's a wide political playing field usually raining from the batshit-crazy left to the equally batshit-crazy right. We may not like these extremists but the fact that the do exist and is part of the political scene is, perhaps a bit contradicting, a sign of a healthy system.

In a kind of odd way I think the world was better off during the cold-war era. We might have been on the brink of nuclear destruction but at least we could always point to the "evil empire" and say "Hey, lets not be as bad as those guys, ok?".

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Alfman on Thu 23rd Feb 2012 17:22 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Speak for yourself!!!"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

Soulbender,

"but at least there's a wide political playing field usually raining from the batshit-crazy left to the equally batshit-crazy right..."

I get your point, and I agree it's better to have a wide spectrum than a narrow one.

However as a side note, I am troubled how often so many complex issues are boiled down to a single dimention with right and left sides. It's entirely possible for someone to be fiscally conservative and yet against big business, to be against war, and yet for the right to bare arms, to be for nationalized medicine yet against welfare, etc. People who's beleifs cross the one dimentional political spectrum are probably not going to be well served by either of the parties. And so I kind of wish politicians had more leniancy to diverge from the party-line. Unfortunately, once one identifies with a political party, I think there's a tendency to discredit others on the sole basis of their party affiliation rather than comparing values and using critical thinking to see real differences.


"We may not like these extremists but the fact that the do exist and is part of the political scene is, perhaps a bit contradicting, a sign of a healthy system."

Yes, extremists are necessary and even heathy. But sometimes I think politicians will bargin from the extremity simply to get a policy that favors them when a compromise is made; they may never have genuinely believed in the extreme position in the first place.

Edited 2012-02-23 17:29 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Speak for yourself!!!
by zima on Mon 27th Feb 2012 22:59 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Speak for yourself!!!"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

often so many complex issues are boiled down to a single dimention with right and left sides

What's "funny" at my place: the still 2nd largest party in parliament, so called "traditional values" one (and general overuse of "moral" issues), presenting itself as very on the right and so on...

...is fairly "socialist" (of course, they take offense at such labeling, but their program and words are there for everyone to see) - essentially more than what remains of The Party (and sort of very much in opposition to them - kinda in the way like Iran sees the UK and US as two devils, or some such)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by weland on Mon 20th Feb 2012 12:18 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
weland Member since:
2012-02-19

What disgusts me with these kinds of comments is that it puts the blame on everybody except the VOTER!


IMHO, the lack of available choices is hardly something you can blame a voter for...

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Sodki on Mon 20th Feb 2012 13:00 UTC in reply to "RE: Speak for yourself!!!"
Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

"What disgusts me with these kinds of comments is that it puts the blame on everybody except the VOTER!


IMHO, the lack of available choices is hardly something you can blame a voter for...
"

Not "a" voter, "the" voter. There's a big difference. I can give the example of a small European country, where we have 5 different political parties with parliament seat, with 2 of those being 'the big ones'. For the past decades, government has been rotating between these two big parties, and the results are always the same. But sill people vote for them, as if anything is going to change. So yes, I blame the voter. The truth is that people are easily manipulated. That's why you have the terrorist paranoia in the U.S., and so on.

Reply Score: 13

RE[3]: Speak for yourself!!!
by weland on Mon 20th Feb 2012 17:44 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!"
weland Member since:
2012-02-19

"[q]What disgusts me with these kinds of comments is that it puts the blame on everybody except the VOTER!


IMHO, the lack of available choices is hardly something you can blame a voter for...
"

Not "a" voter, "the" voter. There's a big difference. I can give the example of a small European country, where we have 5 different political parties with parliament seat, with 2 of those being 'the big ones'. For the past decades, government has been rotating between these two big parties, and the results are always the same. But sill people vote for them, as if anything is going to change. So yes, I blame the voter. The truth is that people are easily manipulated. That's why you have the terrorist paranoia in the U.S., and so on. [/q]

There's a similar situation in my country. In two of the past five elections, people have actually tried to be smart and pick one of the smaller parties -- which actually ended up in power.

End result? Similar. Similarly incompetent people that essentially followed the agendas of the large corporations or wealthy individuals that sponsored their campaigns.

IMO, the basic framework of modern democracy should be rethought. No amount of voting and changing within the same framework is ever going to change its current course.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by JAlexoid on Mon 20th Feb 2012 13:24 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

And you think that direct democracy scales? Or that direct democracy is a good way of preserving freedoms in all scenarios?

The only scalable thing is stupidity - it has no limits.

And obviously there is the Power Distance Index and other cultural differences. But people that preach their beliefs onto others never care about "those silly things"... isn't it right, Mr Preacher?


And in no way I am for the American 2 party system, it's not representative and has more divisions than a multi-party system as a result(conservative/moderate/extreme on both sides).

In short, ideally a meritocracy would be the perfect system of government, but it implies either aristocracy, autocracy or everyone being on the same level of education/intellect. And we get back to the same utopian visions that Marx had about economic systems.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by ndrw on Mon 20th Feb 2012 13:59 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
ndrw Member since:
2009-06-30

Democracy only works when voters see both the outcome and the cost of government actions. Do you want more welfare? No problem, and BTW here is your bill (taxes). This automatically prevents the government from spending too much and thus from growing too big. This is good, because once government gets too much power it always starts using it for its own benefits and against the voters. Selling its power to large corporations is only one of the symptoms. At some point it becomes big and powerful enough that it can override voters' decisions, either by media or by force.

What we are now suffering from, I think, is the lack of accountability. Governments all over the "western" world are trying to overspend each other going heavily into debt. Debt is such a fantastic tool because voters don't care about it, at least not immediately. The government can spend more, charge less and grow, grow, grow...

That of course wouldn't be possible if developing countries didn't provide us with cheap goods (read: take our inflation away) and at the same time lend us back the money they have just earned. This not only fuels the growth of our governments but it also keeps currency exchange rates unbalanced (if our USD/EUR were going in only one direction - out - that would quickly increase value of the exporters' currencies).

However, I wouldn't blame Saudi Arabia, China or any other country for our tendency of spending more than we have. Ultimately, it was our (government's) choice to borrow and print these money. No one could come to us and force use to borrow money unless we agreed to it.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!
by Sodki on Mon 20th Feb 2012 14:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Speak for yourself!!!"
Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

What we are now suffering from, I think, is the lack of accountability. Governments all over the "western" world are trying to overspend each other going heavily into debt.


Yes, completely true. In Europe there is a lot of talk about "austerity" and we've seen a lot of talk about cutting salaries, pensions, etc.. But, on the other side, politicians gave themselves more money, big companies and government management have bigger tax benefits. But the news don't talk about that. It's simply disgusting.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by mkools on Mon 20th Feb 2012 20:25 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
mkools Member since:
2005-10-11

There is one thing you forget, if you look at the USA, all the candidates that run for president are backed by big financial institutions like Goldman Sachs and others.

They decide who will run for president and if the candidate is not suitable for the job because he is against the so called 'elite' they won't back him. If he still gets a lot of votes they will humiliate him and if he still gets elected they will kill him (Kennedy).

You can't vote for the people running these companies so you have nothing to vote for, surely you can vote republican or democrats but not before both candidates went through a full screening by the big financials.

What's even more funny is that you live in Switzerland. Switzerland runs entirely on banks. Banks are the boss in your country, it's Switzerland's nr. 1 export product. All the money the rich Greeks stole from their people is in your banks right now. Hell, all the nazi gold from World War II is still in your banks as well.

Stop making a fool out of yourself by being so naive. You don't have democracy, nobody will ever have democracy as long as the monetary system exists.

Here's a couple of quotes for you:

"Give me control over a nations currency, and I care not who makes its laws.”

Baron M.A. Rothschild

"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free."

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Especially the last one seems to fit you really well.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Speak for yourself!!!
by DOSguy on Tue 21st Feb 2012 02:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Speak for yourself!!!"
DOSguy Member since:
2009-07-27

"Give me control over a nations currency, and I care not who makes its laws.”


I agree with the message; Money is power. You might want to avoid using false quotes, though:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/America:_Freedom_to_Fascism#Alleged_in...

Reply Score: 1

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by tylerdurden on Mon 20th Feb 2012 21:12 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17


Go away, you insult my intelligence on your political commentary...


An ironic (or is it hypocritical?) thing to say from someone getting off on lecturing others on how the democratic process supposedly works.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by ParadoxUncreated on Tue 21st Feb 2012 00:16 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
ParadoxUncreated Member since:
2009-12-05

That qoute was absolutely horrible. First of all RANDOM kindness? It takes a mind to do anything sane, forget about randomness. And ofcourse the obscurity of Evan vs "God".

Sounds like a pseudobuddhistic statement. Where concepts like "God" and "buddha" is killed, in favor of egolessness. Ofcourse they still have "buddhanature" which equals the real God. GOD of all worlds. To some though particulary people who deal with egolessness "god" is a spirit, and must be defeated. A correct concept of God, makes a quiet and peaceful mind though. But that is dualism, and not pantheism, like many buddhists believe in. Ofcourse if you believe in pantheism, you must make extra effort to kill the unpeace from the misbelief. But standard dualistic teachings, where God, correctly equals the first cause, the transcendent, the paradoxical void, such as in Islam (The Quran, not sectarian), are peaceful.

Peace!

Reply Score: 1

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by DOSguy on Tue 21st Feb 2012 03:14 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
DOSguy Member since:
2009-07-27

Fight the system! While I was not part of the 68 generation, at least they had the courage to want to change the system. They were willing to demonstrate peacefully and forced change.


While I agree with most of your comment, you might have to take into account that society has changed a lot. Back in the the days a lot of people took nothing for granted, but we have been spoiled by the riches capitalism has brought us, and although economies around the world seem to be in decline, most of the west isn't really suffering yet. You want demonstrations? Just take a look at Greece, and you'll know when they'll arrive; when it is too late.

'panem et circenses'

God: How do we change the world?
Evan Baxter: One single act of random kindness at a time.
God: [spoken while writing A-R-K on ground with a stick] One Act, of, Random, Kindness.


History teaches us the world rarely changed by people being kind; it mostly happened after spilling blood. Lots of it...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Speak for yourself!!!
by sicofante on Tue 21st Feb 2012 07:04 UTC in reply to "Speak for yourself!!!"
sicofante Member since:
2009-07-08

I wouldn't brag about my country when its first industry is laundering money for all the criminals on the planet...

Edited 2012-02-21 07:08 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Highly Recommended
by twitterfire on Mon 20th Feb 2012 13:13 UTC
twitterfire
Member since:
2008-09-11
Yes, every once in a while
by quickthom on Mon 20th Feb 2012 13:14 UTC
quickthom
Member since:
2012-02-20

The reason we vote every once in a while and then have no control over anything until it's time to vote again is because of that Constitution thing. Nobody in the 18th century thought direct democracy was a good idea. Google the phrase "tyranny of the majority" to see what I mean.

The United States is a democratic republic, not a democracy. We choose our leaders through democratic means, and then leave it up to them to govern while we go about our lives. Backroom deals are an inevitable result of that, and aren't necessarily a bad thing, so long as you trust your representative to know what the right thing is. Something that doesn't help is when people breathe down their necks, screaming at Town Hall meetings over every concession and every line in every bill they voted for that they have some kind of issue with. The reason our government is so dysfunctional is not because there's no transparency, it's because we keep insisting on more of it while holding everyone to impossible standards. No wonder politicians can't help but be posturing, gibbering pander-machines.

The real problem is the way elections are done. If we had a system of public campaign finance where no private money was allowed, we could begin to turn politics and public service back into a serious endeavor. As it is, advancement in both parties is tied to success in fundraising; John Boehner is not Speaker of the House because of his skill or dedication or leadership or anything else. It's because he was really good at raising money for the GOP. Incidentally, this also solves your problem with corporate influence. If politicians and their Super PACs can't take money from corporations, they don't owe them anything.

I don't know what can be done about it, though. Everything is pretty stacked against us. Buddy Roemer, the only presidential candidate this cycle to talk about campaign finance, was totally shut out of the debates. The Supreme Court seems to think money is speech and that limiting campaign contributions violates the First Amendment. The chances of ever getting a constitutional amendment regulating campaign spending through our Congress are zero, for precisely the same reason that we need one.

Reply Score: 9

Welcome to the (dark) future
by twitterfire on Mon 20th Feb 2012 14:11 UTC
twitterfire
Member since:
2008-09-11

While 10 years ago I would have laughed in anyone's face if he mentioned to me some "conspiracy theory", right now I find myself believing that even that most "conspiracy theories" are flawed and they fail to be fail proof, there are certain truths.

It seems that there are "groups of interest", "wise guys" controlling the big financial corporations, the media and worldwide politics. I don't think gangs like CFR, Trilateral Commission, Bilderberg Group, are there for the public interest.

If controlling the big finance (so you can blackmail corporations and governments) isn't enough, then you brainwash the masses using the Hollywood and the news outlets, you use the US puppet government that you own to convince governments in western countries to pass a new law restricting personal freedom or to participate in your shiny new war. That's easy because most governments behave like being US minions.

It seems that the question we shall ask is "cui prodest ?". Who benefits from the former war in Irak, who benefits from the upcoming war in Iran, who benefits from ACTA, SOPA, PIPA, etc? It's certainly not the ordinary western people who are benefiting from acts like these.

It's easy to see in which group belong most of the "wise guys", what is their ethnicity and religion, but certainly I would not name them because that would be politically incorrect.

//end rant

Reply Score: 4

Gullible Jones Member since:
2006-05-23

I hope you're not making the statement I think you are. Because if you are, you are damaging the credibility of the community here.

P.S. why the hell did anyone mod you up?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Welcome to the (dark) future
by Sodki on Mon 20th Feb 2012 16:33 UTC in reply to "RE: Welcome to the (dark) future"
Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

Apart from the grouping of "the wise guys" regarding ethnicity and religion, I actually agree with him.

Reply Score: 2

Gullible Jones Member since:
2006-05-23

That was the part I considered damaging.

Anyway, maybe I'm dense but I don't see why grand, sweeping conspiracies need to be invoked to explain the gradual corruption and failure of a republic. Similar things have happened before.

Reply Score: 4

Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

Anyway, maybe I'm dense but I don't see why grand, sweeping conspiracies need to be invoked to explain the gradual corruption and failure of a republic. Similar things have happened before.


You are right, of course, in saying that corruption doesn't need conspiracy theories to explain it. It's obvious. But, in this day and age, when money and power are bound to select individuals as never before, bigger and more organized corruption is more probable. And there's proof everyday in the news - when the news channels decide to publish them.

Reply Score: 3

blitze Member since:
2006-09-15

Some interesting reading on the whole mess can be had at a couple sites.

The ownership of the global corporate system as deduced via fractal mathematics as written in New Scientist. It's a very interesting read.

Then there is divinecosmos.com and the dragon lawsuit reading which is quite interesting and again there is zerohedge.com which provides some interesting insight to what former insiders of the trading system think.

Now with the recent decisions given by the ECB to rewrite the terms of sovereign bonds for Greek Bond holders ripping up contractual trust, Europe has passed another credit event which will see institutions more paralyzed to work amongst each other. They are making this up as we go along and destroying the system in the process.

Any student of history will also know that the German Central Bank in the Wiemar Republic was not a Government controlled entity but a Private institution like that of the ECB and Fed now a days. Until money issuance and control is usurped from the hands of private interest and placed into public care as a vital utility for civilised existence and not for profit, then the system will continue to be corrupt and nothing a Gov or the people can do against it.

Fun days ahead but I believe at the end of the day the Anglo West Finance is headed for the grave as the World is sick and tired of the chaos it brings.

Reply Score: 4

blitze Member since:
2006-09-15

Oh and I forgot to add, Switzerland is part of the problem specifically Basil where the BIS resides. Not to worry though, the English have the City of London where the financial empire works and where US financial entities were able to by pass financial controls at home and pass their Financial Weapons of Mass Destruction through to the global market.

Now Asia and BRICS are circumventing Euro and Anglo Finance as are other countries. See what is happening in Iran and their Oil Burse to get a better picture. Keep this in mind when looking back on Libia and what they were trying to do for Africa and the response the WEst gave.

Reply Score: 3

StychoKiller Member since:
2005-09-20

Hope you didn't injure yerself by jumping to a conclusion...perhaps the comment was referring to the Illuminati.

Reply Score: 1

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

It's easy to see in which group belong most of the "wise guys", what is their ethnicity and religion, but certainly I would not name them because that would be politically incorrect.


Nor would be particularly relevant, unless you can show evidence of some kind of causal relationship (instead of mere correlation).

Edited 2012-02-20 19:38 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Welcome to the (dark) future
by Soulbender on Wed 22nd Feb 2012 08:30 UTC in reply to "Welcome to the (dark) future"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

It's easy to see in which group belong most of the "wise guys", what is their ethnicity and religion


I KNEW those flying spaghetti monster people couldn't be trusted!

Reply Score: 2

What is this democracy you speak of?
by siraf72 on Mon 20th Feb 2012 15:41 UTC
siraf72
Member since:
2006-02-22

Regards,

From the Middle East.

Reply Score: 3

I am glad
by utumno on Mon 20th Feb 2012 17:33 UTC
utumno
Member since:
2008-02-10

to see some people have not been completely brainwashed by the Mass Media propaganda just yet.

People have no real choice in the US. Romney, Ginrich, and, sadly, as it turns out Obama - are all members of the same gang, the same oligarchy. No votes on important, systemic issues are ever allowed there. No discussion on anything important (like: should we go to War, who should hold the power to control money in the country and why some private bank called 'the Fed' stuffed with unelected crooks who do not have to answer to anyone, including the President) ever takes place there.

Likewise in Europe, if there were some popular votes on important issues - their outcomes were simply ignored by the oligarchy ( case in point: the French & the Dutch rejected European Constitution which was pushed down their throats anyway, the Irish were told to vote until they get the right result, mere mention of Greek referendum and the democratically elected Greek government has been replaced by an unelected 'technocrat' sent from Brussels, same in Italy, etc etc etc - I can go on much longer )

How can one blame the voter? The voter has no say so. All he can do is vote for Oligarchy member X or Oligarchy member Y. And when some really new party ever makes it to the Parliament, existing oligarchy makes sure it is never allowed to enter the government ( case in point: True Finns )

The West has been consumed with corruption. USA is increasingly behaving like the good old Soviet Union. Europe is run by impotent oligarchy like that Gollum-like character van Rompuoy. God help us!

Edited 2012-02-20 17:46 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE: I am glad
by Sodki on Mon 20th Feb 2012 17:43 UTC in reply to "I am glad"
Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

the democratically elected Greek government has been replaced by an unelected 'technocrat' sent from Brussels, same in Italy, etc etc etc


On the other hand, Italy's government at the hands of media baron Berlusconi is... appalling. I can't really wrap my head around the fact that people still vote for him!

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I am glad
by utumno on Mon 20th Feb 2012 17:50 UTC in reply to "RE: I am glad"
utumno Member since:
2008-02-10

True, Berlusconi is a clown, but I hope you are not saying that just because some prime minister is a clown, ha can be replaced by a unelected Goldman Sachs puppet whenever the financial oligarchy says so?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I am glad
by Gestahlt on Mon 20th Feb 2012 21:20 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I am glad"
Gestahlt Member since:
2011-10-17

I always liked Berlusconi. With Berlusconi, you always saw it coming. He might be an a**, but at least you knew where you at.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Mon 20th Feb 2012 17:34 UTC
ilovebeer
Member since:
2011-08-08

Voting will never change corruption because you can't vote out greed in human beings. The people in power, and those with all the money make the rules by which they play. Democracy, at least here, is an illusion to make people think they're involved in some way, or that they assert some kind of power over those who are supposed to serve them.

We're allowed only two options... 1) Replace corrupt politicians with other corrupt politicians, or 2) people who actually want honest change but can't because they'll never be allowed to do so. In either case it will continue to be business as usual.

I'm simply stating fact, nothing more. In America people care just enough to bitch & moan, but beyond that would require them to get up off the couch and actually do something about it. Maybe after the current season of Dancing With The Stars and American Idol is over -- otherwise chasing real change is too much of a distraction and it's too much to ask from people who anxiously await Burger King delivery service in their area.

Yes, Burger King delivery service was a leading story in the news... I think that says it all.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by lucas_maximus
by lucas_maximus on Mon 20th Feb 2012 19:04 UTC
lucas_maximus
Member since:
2009-08-18

A government official wanting to expose unlawful practices within an administration.


This already happened in the UK, it was known as the "expenses scandal". It did not need an Android application for a civil servant to leak the information and probably either Outlook or a photocopier.

What is more important is that people do what is ethically correct rather than silly artworks and applications that don't solve the root of the problem.

Most education systems teach people to pass exams and not think for themselves ... this makes obedient worker bees and not people that wish to ask questions.

You need to change Education if you want people to think critically.

Edited 2012-02-20 19:12 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Comment by tonny
by tonny on Mon 20th Feb 2012 19:05 UTC
tonny
Member since:
2011-12-22

Well, one word: ANONYMOUS.
Although, they doing think is a bit extreme ;) .

Reply Score: 1

face it...
by TomF on Mon 20th Feb 2012 20:22 UTC
TomF
Member since:
2010-01-22

it's rather simple:

- to be elected you need to be rich and good at making promises (lies)
- most voters are gullible

and that is true no matter which country....

TomUK

Reply Score: 1

Western Democracy
by ParadoxUncreated on Tue 21st Feb 2012 00:09 UTC
ParadoxUncreated
Member since:
2009-12-05

One thing I could never understand about the west is that they allow in a democracy, banks that get three houses each time you get one. Nobody needs that skewed marketforce. Atleast in Iran they have understood this, and have no interest on loans. Thats a place to start anyway.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Western Democracy
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 22nd Feb 2012 14:59 UTC in reply to "Western Democracy"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

While its difficult for people to understand proper moderation and regulation, I'll try anyways.

Without getting interest on a loan, the party making the loan has no incentive to give the money in the first place. Especially if there is a non negligible inflation rate. Your $100,000 loan taken out in 1970 was able to buy a lot more than it was in 2000, when a conventional 30 Year mortgage would be repaid.

Now, what caused the financial crisis in the United states then? Well, greed obviously. Instead of charging a fixed rate, banks made loans to people with adjustable rates. They also stopped actually sufficiently investigating if people could pay for the loans, also bad. So all of a sudden those rates went up all at once for a large section of the people who took out loans, and they couldn't pay. Meltdown achieved due to excessive greed and lack of adequate regulations, and a poor understanding of math.

There is nothing wrong with a properly regulated market economy. The tough part is the "properly regulated" part, finding the balance between market forces and regulation is difficult both academically and politically,

Reply Score: 2

Review history
by Lorin on Tue 21st Feb 2012 00:20 UTC
Lorin
Member since:
2010-04-06

You fight this the same way our US founders did, without mercy and without surrender.

Reply Score: 0

RE: Review history
by Gullible Jones on Tue 21st Feb 2012 00:54 UTC in reply to "Review history"
Gullible Jones Member since:
2006-05-23

Viva la Revolution! Until the revolutionaries decide you're one of the People They Don't Like, and you wind up swinging from a gallows.

Violence begets violence, and brings the people who are best at violence to the top, where they can beget still more violence. Let's try to solve things without violence so we don't all end up in shallow graves, mkay?

Edited 2012-02-21 00:56 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Review history
by hackus on Tue 21st Feb 2012 02:18 UTC in reply to "RE: Review history"
hackus Member since:
2006-06-28

Non violent change.

I totally agree.

I am sure that the people that run everything, and pick the people who you vote for, who by the way will be meeting at the G8 in Chicago this year, will just hear your plea:

"We need change. This isn't working for us. Could you pretty please dismantle the power control structure that allows you to pick our candidates we vote for and just step aside? Pretty please? We can't afford all your ill gotten wealth and power so please just give it up."

Yeah. Non violent change. Given what human nature is, these people are going to beat the crap out everyone in Chicago when they arrive this May if you think like that.

They will beat you to death, they will KILL YOU.

Make sure you all put bullseyes on your signs so that they can get a good shot at you so they don't hit any of the buildings they own or damage the property they have down town Chicago.

Just stand there with the sign, and die peacefully please.

Please don't dodge the rubber bullets either. And please insure the private army they use as security forces have a good clean swing to crack your skull open....

all nice and peaceful like.

-Hack

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Review history
by Gullible Jones on Tue 21st Feb 2012 02:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Review history"
Gullible Jones Member since:
2006-05-23

And your alternative is what? Kill a bunch of people who, for the most part, were simply too ignorant to pick the right side? And in all likelihood get shot for it? Fuck off, please.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Review history
by blitze on Tue 21st Feb 2012 07:17 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Review history"
blitze Member since:
2006-09-15

Well it worked for Gandhi against the most repressive Empire of the time. Just requires critical mass and there is nothing the powers that be can do against it. You fight fire with fire and you get burnt as they say. Only good change can come from using peaceful and enlightened methods.

If you use their methods, you strengthen their hand and justify them.

It isn't easy but you have to use methods of change that you want to move the system towards or you can't hope to change the system.

Look at the blow back of the French, Russian and Chinese revolutions, they achieved little but lots of killing. Maybe there is something to be said of "He who lives by the sword dies by the sword". There is a lot of wisdom through the ages that we need to pay attention to.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Review history
by lucas_maximus on Tue 21st Feb 2012 17:52 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Review history"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Going to have to Godwin this ... Similar tactics don't work against people like Stalin or Hitler.

It certainly wouldn't have happened in Europe where the Catholic Church used to celebrate Hitler's Birthday (and continued to until the 1960s), Nazism was preferable to the Catholic Church than any Jewish presence in Europe.

I don't think people know how lucky we have it in the Western world.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Review history
by Gullible Jones on Tue 21st Feb 2012 23:01 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Review history"
Gullible Jones Member since:
2006-05-23

Fortunately we're not (yet) fighting anything close to Nazism in the mainstream (though there are people who'd love to move things in that direction). And maybe if we use saner methods now, insanity won't be necessary later.

Hey, it worked for SOPA/PIPA, at least for a while...

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Review history
by zima on Mon 27th Feb 2012 23:59 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Review history"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Though thing worth remembering is: Stalin or Hitler were essentially also created by more "decisive" ways.

And people in the Western world (in general, really, but those you can mostly see in this thread) follow many myths - in the thread, you can for example clearly see denial of how the conditions in their democracies are largely also reflections of societies, problems even due to outright populism and universal simple human greed. Or, of course, seeing the past through rose-coloured glasses (or, really, still reflecting the way past mass media, actually much less dependable than remembered, were misrepresenting that past back in the day)

Edited 2012-02-28 00:13 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Review history
by zima on Mon 27th Feb 2012 23:54 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Review history"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Look at the blow back of the French, Russian and Chinese revolutions, they achieved little but lots of killing.

Certainly not so simple for the French - its upheaval ultimately also led to radical long-term social and political changes which you probably now take for granted, as the outline for societies or nations. Or emergence of middle class, and its voice.

The Russian is... weird. We are talking here, before it, about a quite backwards place in a semi-colonial dependency. And, afterwards, it brought some of the greatest ironies of history (NVM turning the place into a major power, that's nothing): life expectancy in the area of Soviet Union increased dramatically under Stalin, despite the victims. Also: yes, heavy censorship ...and also the first literate generation.
(and anyway, it unraveled the way it did as hoped by the 'traditionalist' Prussian kinda-backers of Bolsheviks, preferring them over the earlier Provisional Government of 1917; and because it was all in turn a blow-back of tsar & Okhrana ...yup, vicious cycles)

The effects of Chinese one are still unraveling...


But yeah, evolutions tend to promote not the "best" people, but the most ruthless ones.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Dasher42
by Dasher42 on Tue 21st Feb 2012 00:59 UTC
Dasher42
Member since:
2007-04-05

Considering that I know of someone who has been jailed with felony charges for lobbing seedpods in the direction of the police at a protest, and that our governments are cracking down on whistleblowers, you're sure to be labeled by some folks as a terrorist.

Speaking from the USA, all of our nation's founders risked the gallows from the government they revolted against, so it's ridiculously ironic that our government has made King George III's tyranny look petty.

Reply Score: 1

Comment
by hackus on Tue 21st Feb 2012 02:05 UTC
hackus
Member since:
2006-06-28

"...there's a profound sense here in the west that the people no longer having any tangible control over what our governments do. "

This is a historical statement after the fact. You never had control over your government. Nobody has...._ever_.

Year after year, decade after decade, empire after empire created rises and is destroyed.

Every age, all the time. _No_ _exceptions_.

Socialism, DUST. Democracy, DUST. Communism, DUST. Dictators DUST, Fascism DUST and on and on and on it goes.

Why? What is it that we are missing. We just happen to be in another age of technology. Just as in previous ages.

Look at what we are doing with it.

Making excuses, poor ones to justify why some of live like kings, and the rest live wretched lives, that there just isn't enough to go around. Artificially restricting technology through a economic and social political structure to justify it all.

Instead of using this age of technology to destroy the very foundations of what every leader knows, but doesn't want to happen: Use technology to feed, cloth and shelter and educate every single person on the planet.

Do that, we can support a hundred billion people on this planet and have an ecology of a paradise.

That won't happen, because the idiots you elect will never allow it.

No, we won't do that. Instead we misuse technology in a failed economic system of consumerism and greed. We use technology not to get rid of centralized power and distribution systems which suck ass.

No, we use technology to build iCrapola this, and iCrap shiney new piece of junk that and call it progress.

Even as the iCrapola technology is used to enslave millions it is viewed as progress. "Oh...oh its a magical device."

I would like to take a magical device and shove it up a magical Apple users arse.

This whole world is way beyond the voting box now wherever you go. People keep thinking if only we could use the same political process and people they elect to screw them with more votes, they could change the world for a better place.

"doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

Yeah, you keep voting, singing your stupid petitions and doing the same old same old.

I agree with Einstein you are ALL INSANE.

-Hack

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment
by Gullible Jones on Tue 21st Feb 2012 02:48 UTC in reply to "Comment"
Gullible Jones Member since:
2006-05-23

We are? And you're not? Seriously?

(And what, pray tell, do you think should be done about all this, anyway?)

Edited 2012-02-21 02:49 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment
by hackus on Tue 21st Feb 2012 14:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment"
hackus Member since:
2006-06-28

Usually after a disease is diagnosed, a treatment is prescribed. In this case, a species that has gone insane I am not sure what the treatment would be.

The response of my message, was to point out the problem, I do not have a solution.

Since the problem is government however, perhaps getting rid of all forms of government might be a start.

Now how that would work, we already have a crude model to work from.

It is called the Internet.

In fact, that is why every government on the planet is working to destroy it.

Governments know where the logical outcome of the ideas of something like the Internet lead too.

Unfortunately for them, it doesn't include governments.

They are right of course. So the Internet will be destroyed.

At least that is what history says will happen. I am referring of course to change. Everything dies, crumbles or turns to dust or ruin.

The Internet will be no exception.

So in order to destroy the internet, we will first have to have one whopper of a disaster.

I am not sure what that is, my best bet would be a world war of some kind.

Many here probably think that would be bad, and it could be. However, with any change comes the possibility of something better to replace it.

One thing history guarantees is change.....better or worse.

-Hack

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: Comment
by lucas_maximus on Tue 21st Feb 2012 21:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Stop talking shit, kthx bye

Reply Score: 2

America has a choice.
by re_re on Wed 22nd Feb 2012 23:11 UTC
re_re
Member since:
2005-07-06

Ron Paul is the only guy in the States that is worth voting for in this upcoming presidential election.... We do have a choice here in America, Ron paul is that choice. Sorry, I don't mean to sound like a campaign ad, but RP really is one of the only politicians that is truly honest and sticks to his principals, and his principals are that of freedom and not corrupted by coorporate interests.

Reply Score: 1

RE: America has a choice.
by zima on Mon 27th Feb 2012 22:31 UTC in reply to "America has a choice."
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

...also of anti-science crazy stuff, and such (which is, really, just very convenient for certain flavour of ~corporations; specifics not even that important, just his overall demonstrated willingness to ignore solid evidence); inflexible "principles" not necessarily a good thing.

But maybe that's "representative"...

Edited 2012-02-27 22:37 UTC

Reply Score: 2