The Math Forum

Search All of the Math Forum:

Views expressed in these public forums are not endorsed by NCTM or The Math Forum.

Math Forum » Discussions » Education » math-teach

Notice: We are no longer accepting new posts, but the forums will continue to be readable.

Topic: Re: WG 13 Announcement: CERME 8 [Turkey]
Replies: 14   Last Post: Dec 6, 2012 7:00 PM

Advanced Search

Back to Topic List Back to Topic List Jump to Tree View Jump to Tree View   Messages: [ Previous | Next ]
Paul A. Tanner III

Posts: 5,920
Registered: 12/6/04
Re: WG 13 Announcement: CERME 8 [Turkey]
Posted: Dec 6, 2012 7:00 PM
  Click to see the message monospaced in plain text Plain Text   Click to reply to this topic Reply

On Thu, Dec 6, 2012 at 5:47 PM, kirby urner <> wrote:
> On Thu, Dec 6, 2012 at 11:45 AM, Paul Tanner <> wrote:
>> You did not address the truth of what I said. (Yes, most of the top 1%
>> of the income distribution are not involved in "buying" politicians.
>> So what. I does not change the truth of what I said.)

> I think I'm fairly up to date on patterns of income distribution. That
> wasn't my point.
> Yes, the money games people play greatly favor those who already have quite
> a bit to start with. The game is rigged, the deck is stacked.
> It's difficult to get "dealt in" and the Horatio Alger stories about doing
> so are worth mocking -- which is what Michael Moore did when he came to
> Portland that time.
> His thesis (for that talk) is the "strike it rich" story, the rags-to-riches
> narrative, is what gets people to postpone thinking at all realistically.
> They put their hopes in the lottery and other such stupidities.
> Of course there's irony in all this because MM himself has become wealthy
> enough to qualify as 1% in the minds of many Occupiers, some of whom taunted
> him to this effect when he came to visit.
> The Citizens United 'Occupy Unmasked' (recent documentary) shows Michael's
> house and implies he's a hypocrite for having such a big one.

>> I addressed you condemning the Occupy movement, abd doing this your
>> using language suggesting that you deny the truth of what I said.

> I was not "condemning the Occupy movement".
> On the contrary, I'm objectively embedded in its anarchic leadership. My
> friends and I were deeply involved in providing food logistics, and helped
> start Occupy Portland on Oct 6. We took the park and set up the food tent.
> Everything followed from that.
> Portland's Occupy was quite a bit bigger than most of the others and
> received a lot of attention. We also pulled out before we were pushed out,
> after a giant party in which many thousands of people streamed into town to
> register their approval of what we had done. Most the main tents were gone
> the next morning, though those wishing a confrontation with police got what
> they wanted too (it's a free country, we didn't force everyone to follow
> us).
> My guess is I was and am a few thousand percent more active in Occupy than
> you were or are. The people who helped make it happen are still my friends
> and associates. We're still serving free meals to homeless people at the
> original site near City Hall (on Tuesdays), with surplus going to Right to
> Dream Too (a semi-permanent downtown village). I am integrally involved in
> these actions.
> I have posted about Occupy and #OPDX (Occupy Portland) many times on this
> very list. I know infinitely more about Occupy than you do, would be my
> working assumption (using "infinitely" in its hyperbolic sense i.e. I'm
> using hyperbole).
> As one of Occupy's many "leaders" I freely admit that the rhetoric of "1%
> versus 99%" is shorthand, not some scientific thesis. I think it was
> brilliant and fairly effective, but as a slogan only. Kind of like Haim's
> "Education Mafia" in that sense.
> Or consider the atheist / humanist movement and its need for PR. "Good
> without God" is their bumper sticker these days. PR is important. People
> rally around slogans and mantras, I don't deny it. I'm not being cynical,
> just saying what's so. Advertising is important. Art moves us.

>> Since Reagan, there is less and less of what could be called social
>> democracy in the US, and less and less of what I call capital
>> democracy or entrepreneurial democracy in the US.

> It's not just your "conservatives" that are exclusively behind that trend I
> would say. In the Clinton years the stock market and real estate bubbles
> were marketed to the "get rich quick" greedy middle classes. They packed
> hotel ballrooms to learn about flipping houses with "no money down". Banks
> were complicit in this scheming and dreaming but not exclusively. This was
> a "mom & pop" movement.
> The "dot com bombers" made a lot of spurious claims for their vaporware
> businesses, attracted venture capital, and squandered it on themselves.
> Many of these were young "liberal" type people. Those who bought the dot
> com stocks were likewise often yuppies, happy to read the Village Voice and
> vote democratic.
> The Clinton Era was a hay day for fiscal irresponsibility, while political
> TV became a circus. The office of president lost just about all of its
> gravitas under Clinton, with the office of president even further degrading
> under Bush, when he made fun of himself looking for WMDs and not finding
> them, ridiculing the bankruptcy of the USA's indefensible "foreign policy".
> You can blame presidents if you like, but I tend to think the American
> people bear some responsibility for recent war crimes. Their hypocrisy
> about drugs and drug use is laying waste to the indigenous lifestyles so
> many around the world even now. Their puritanical religious fanaticism is a
> deep ugliness in their culture.
> What business have the Americans using herbicides and flame throwers against
> opium crops in Afghanistan. Who invited them to be judge and jury around
> the world.
> Clinton's pals (people like Sandy Berger) bombed the Chinese embassy in
> Belgrade, used cluster bombs over that city. They used a cruise missile
> against a veterinary pharmaceuticals plant in the Sudan (and settled behind
> the scenes after the public stopped watching).
> I think it all started going to hell after Eisenhower, when the decision was
> made to keep priming the prime contractors irrigation system and make
> military buildup the name of the game. That's when the USA made a wrong
> turn and started to sell out. Eisenhower warned against doing that, but
> went unheeded.
> If you think Occupy is about making liberal Democrats seem like heros and
> conservative Republicans the demons, think again.
> "No One for President" was the popular sign.
> The US flag was never accepted as a symbol of Occupy Portland (I was at the
> meetings and know what I'm talking about). This was not a nationalist
> movement. It's roots were in Arab Spring.

>> On this latter type of democracy being destroyed by some of those in
>> the top 1%: Because the banks are less and less making capital
>> available via business loans to people not already rich to become
>> practicing capitalists - that is, to become business owners, the
>> percentage of the US population that own a business has been cut in
>> half since Reagan in the early 1980s began this destruction of capital
>> democracy or entrepreneurial democracy in the US.

> Yeah, looks like those hypocrite USAers are probably incompetent to practice
> true democratic capitalism or whatever they wanna call it. Not surprising.
> This isn't Sweden after all and never will be.
> Ironic they use the rhetoric of "spreading democracy" when they're so bad at
> it themselves.
> I blame their weak STEM education, their weak math teachers. They're not
> genetically stupid, just their culture makes them that way. Oh well, nice
> experiment. Seems about over though eh? Or do you think there's still
> hope?
> Kirby

Very simply this to all your above: You talk (and personally involve
yourself) a good game but in the end, it's meaningless and useless and
empty, for a very simply reason: Your rhetoric tells me that in spite
of all this pretty sounding talk, you are against the only things that
would actually make things better, these things being the laws that
must be passed - the public policy that must be implemented - along
the lines that I have been suggesting, some of this being the laws and
public policy that we in the US started to abandon starting with
Reagan (via enough voters in the US being conned by the lies of
conservatism) even though these laws and policies served us very well.

That is, your total presentation is just more of the
morally-challenged inconsistency of conservatism, like so many
conservatives implicitly saying, "I'm heavily involved personally in
charity, and so it therefore is OK or me to (1) be in favor of laws
and public policy that if fully implemented would result in less
happiness and more suffering and premature death over the entire
population, and (2) be against laws and public policy that if fully
implemented would result in more happiness and less suffering and
premature death over the entire population."

(Regarding the "happiness" reference: See

"Moral economics -> world's highest living standard and greatest happiness"

for the truth, very heavily documented along with very many links.)

Point your RSS reader here for a feed of the latest messages in this topic.

[Privacy Policy] [Terms of Use]

© The Math Forum at NCTM 1994-2018. All Rights Reserved.