2009.12.17 19:00 - Finding the Middle Ground

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    The Guardian for this meeting was Paradise Tennant. The comments are by Paradise, doug, Calvino, Storm and Bene


    doug Sosa: hi calvino
    doug Sosa: I am always fascinated by you "tell me a story."
    Calvino Rabeni: How are you, doug?
    Calvino Rabeni: It is my mantra
    doug Sosa: i am ok. how did you get to this mantra and what does it mean?
    Paradise Tennant: hello doug .. cal :)
    Calvino Rabeni: Paradise appears :)
    Paradise Tennant: :)
    doug Sosa: hi.
    Paradise Tennant: how are you two tonight :)
    Calvino Rabeni: It is the tag line for the Storyteller's Guild, but I adopted it and put it into the hovertext.
    doug Sosa: terrible :)
    Calvino Rabeni: Quite well, thanks :)
    Paradise Tennant: terrible ?
    Paradise Tennant: :) happy to hear it Cal
    doug Sosa: sure. i am usually terrible and good at the same time.
    Paradise Tennant: the nature of dualism :) per chance
    Calvino Rabeni: AH, yes, with me, it is the other way around :)
    doug Sosa: don't think so. it is i am good but so many are not.
    doug Sosa: For example, just read the transcript of a supre court session a few weeks ago, and most of the judges were so inarticulate, lke tey don't really have egal culture beyond case law. it was VERY discouraging.
    doug Sosa: egal=legal
    Paradise Tennant: funny you know I find some day I awake walk the dog ..by the water and say .. good morning dream of my mind .. funny thing to say but it helps me put it all in perspective :) the horror .the wonder
    doug Sosa: It feels to me bigger than my mind.
    Paradise Tennant: yes .. me too ... seems like we must have to have a very big mind to have such a complicated big dream
    doug Sosa: well, we do, and we don't.
    doug Sosa: Is it all in my mind? Sort of. Is some of it out there? Sort of.
    Paradise Tennant: does anyone have a topic they would like to explore ?
    Paradise Tennant: faith ... being .. appearances ... inarticulate legal beagles ? :)
    doug Sosa: i thought we already were :)
    Paradise Tennant: lol
    Paradise Tennant: I think you are right !
    doug Sosa: legal beagles?
    Paradise Tennant: cdb slang for lawyers
    Paradise Tennant: cdn
    doug Sosa: did we talk to a lawyer today? I did. Case law vs legal theory.
    Calvino Rabeni: Doug, is it you that do "reflections on garden world politics"?
    doug Sosa: Context: world not working. Declaration of independence "That whe any form of government becomes destructive of these ends.."
    doug Sosa: yep.
    Calvino Rabeni: Can you summarize the main idea ? What is "garden world" for instance?
    doug Sosa: That we all want to live in a combination of civilization and nature. it should be outr intent to try and build sicuh a world.
    Calvino Rabeni: OK, I found the book.
    doug Sosa: Not a plan, because we don't know, byt the intent to make more green, more useful, more aesthetic, mor climate moderation, more food..
    Calvino Rabeni: important topic doug
    doug Sosa: blush
    doug Sosa: Made more important by climate catastrophe.
    Paradise Tennant: yes very much so
    doug Sosa: I GardedenWorld i want each person to look at all the eactual scenes in their life and think how to make it more a garden with thos complex qualities.
    doug Sosa: Every scene can be improved.
    Paradise Tennant: lovely
    Calvino Rabeni: good true point
    Paradise Tennant: has a physical manifestation and a meditative manifestation too .. because everything starts with a thought ..
    doug Sosa: How many can get it and how many are cynical or have a hardened heart?
    doug Sosa: We habe the idea that increasing dollars in th economy and alowing for individual consumption gets us to a satisfactory end. but it doesn't.
    doug Sosa: oops
    Paradise Tennant: none are beyond getting it .. the only question is the when
    doug Sosa: Thank you.
    Calvino Rabeni: doug, are there strategic ideas
    doug Sosa: I think so. What do you mean?
    doug Sosa: How to get there?
    Calvino Rabeni: yes
    doug Sosa: An important idea is to not try to make too much of a plan. we need flexibility and experimentation. But the goal is gardenworld, the actual design has to be worked out locally.
    doug Sosa: Then on strategy there is trying to understand the economy and the law, such as land as private property.
    doug Sosa: As a first step, changing tax law so it reversed the flow of money to the already rich would lead to a big increase in morale, long before the damage was corrected. just starting..
    doug Sosa: would help.
    doug Sosa: Bigger issues ar the nature of the corporation and the problem of interest and banking.
    doug Sosa: Then we hvae the problem of population, our success becomes out nighmare.
    Calvino Rabeni: education, politics, changing the system, democracy?
    doug Sosa: yes. Democracy is tricky, as is education.
    doug Sosa: Current education if for siloed professions. At stanford
    doug Sosa: when i invite prople from the humanities and social sciences to discuss the politics of climate change they say
    doug Sosa: "it is not my speciality. what could i contrbute."
    doug Sosa: Almost all corporate planning has no place for consieration of the impact on the world of people, resources..
    Calvino Rabeni: who is your main audience for your writing?
    doug Sosa: I am afraid it is on you :)
    doug Sosa: only=on
    doug Sosa: Seriously, i don't know. i'd like it to be part of public consciousness. But I am feeling my way.
    Paradise Tennant: :)
    doug Sosa: I am giving more talks, mor invitations. Maybe n agent will get interested.
    doug Sosa: I have to keep rewriting it, brining it up to date.
    Calvino Rabeni: There are many approaches to this kind of change, as we're aware
    Calvino Rabeni: I think I'm looking for a good rationale to choose
    doug Sosa: feel your way, keep experimenting. Wat is the fit life for a human being? For you?
    Paradise Tennant: for a gardener :)
    doug Sosa: a gardner should be asking about setting and resources. water, land, cleanliness.
    doug Sosa: and then aesthetics.
    Calvino Rabeni: No easy answere, bit I am reading your book Introduction
    doug Sosa: again, blush.
    Calvino Rabeni: The whole world is a garden, we each cultivate a different part
    doug Sosa: yes, but we don't do it well enough.
    Paradise Tennant: :)
    Paradise Tennant: well we each create a type of space .. attention .... awareness that always has some manifestation in the external the physical :)
    Calvino Rabeni: I gravitate toward approaches that promise holism or integration
    Paradise Tennant: we are most definitely one with the garden lol a very real part of of it
    doug Sosa: Gardenworld is the seeting for personal development and the raising of children and the making of art.
    Calvino Rabeni: One concern is community, social capital
    Calvino Rabeni: the place where aesthetics become public
    doug Sosa: I lke to leave the idea of cpaital to the side abit. it implies growth. Comes from cap, head, as in head of cattle and "caput"
    doug Sosa: the breeding makes another head, hence capital.
    Calvino Rabeni: But whatever you call it, and names are nice to have - it has shrunk, and needs to grow - through cultivation
    doug Sosa: On public, i'd like to see all schools become community centers for the integration of generations.
    doug Sosa: Grow but sustainable. Aristotle talked about growth withut development and - hey - development without growth.
    doug Sosa: snow in your lap? :)
    Calvino Rabeni: I don't think there's a sustainability issue with the growth of social consciousness :)
    Paradise Tennant: hello storm ...gtsy :)
    doug Sosa: (hi storm)
    Storm Nordwind: Hi guys :)
    doug Sosa: I do. i think we are - here i am in a minority - not getting a growth of social consciousness despite the rhetoric. We are getting some larger awareness but the loss of detail and culture is extraordinary.
    Calvino Rabeni: Exactly, so growth is needed there
    doug Sosa: I a not sure. development yes.
    Calvino Rabeni: I think for you, growth is a dirty word?
    doug Sosa: there is a time when the brain grows, then it stops growing and develops.
    Calvino Rabeni: Undoing-the-shrinking then
    doug Sosa: Not dirty, problematic. We cannot grow this economy or the population.. But we can develop.
    Storm Nordwind: Or people go into politics, and then it softens instead :)
    doug Sosa: ha, yes.
    Calvino Rabeni: People like positive sounding words for things that are to increase
    doug Sosa: If only congressmen would relish the opportunity to make sense and then be willing to lose the next election. Why hold on?
    doug Sosa: Incrase is now very suspect. We are in real trouble with it.
    Calvino Rabeni: You know the perspective, that the change must happen on the level of values
    Calvino Rabeni: Increase is a problemetical word too then ?
    doug Sosa: just need to be careful, make sure we know what we are talking about.
    Paradise Tennant: :)
    Calvino Rabeni: I think, a strategy of change can't be based on "let's have less of everything"
    doug Sosa: Theenergy companies talk about new technologies to "meet higher demands." Wrong.
    Storm Nordwind: It can. But no one would be able to sell it!
    Calvino Rabeni: But, "let's have more .." - aesthetics, community, long-range security, beauty, so forth
    Calvino Rabeni: That worked with the peak-oil movement, apparently
    Paradise Tennant: less stuff ...more space ... less is more ... works for me :)
    doug Sosa: Yes, but really severe choices loom ahead.
    Calvino Rabeni: It is a shift in their presentation
    doug Sosa: It is making it attractive, hence back to GardenWorld.
    Paradise Tennant: what do you see as the severe choices doug
    Calvino Rabeni: And when the severe choices happen, they need positive alternatives
    Storm Nordwind: more tolerance, more wisdom, more courtesy works for me! :)
    doug Sosa: (where we started this evening.)
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, more of things like that
    doug Sosa: yes.
    Calvino Rabeni: more civility
    doug Sosa: folks, gotta go.
    Paradise Tennant: good nite doug
    Calvino Rabeni: By then, Doug
    Storm Nordwind waves
    Calvino Rabeni: Is there a middle ground, between, "let's fix the political system and corporations" and "let's transform everybody's consciousness"
    Storm Nordwind: Why would there need to be a middle ground?
    Calvino Rabeni: Because people have limited capacity for integrative thought
    Storm Nordwind: I think most people have the capacity to be interested in more than one thing!
    Calvino Rabeni: If there is a dark spot in the middle, then that is where the trouble would go to hide
    Calvino Rabeni: But activists need strategic focuses, as far as I can tell
    Storm Nordwind: They are independent topics. Both can be addressed.
    Calvino Rabeni: Most focus in specific areas
    Calvino Rabeni: some areas don't get addressed
    Calvino Rabeni: there are a few who try to integrate
    Storm Nordwind: Then keep them separate and address them separately
    Paradise Tennant: hiya bene :)
    Benedizione Vita: hello everyone
    Storm Nordwind: Hi there!
    Calvino Rabeni: Who, Storm?
    Storm Nordwind: No who, but what. The two topics you mentioned that you thought there might be a middle ground between
    Storm Nordwind: *Not
    Calvino Rabeni: Can you take a systems perspective?
    Storm Nordwind: mais oui
    Calvino Rabeni: what is missing then
    Storm Nordwind: you tell me
    Calvino Rabeni: the middle ground
    Calvino Rabeni: social consciousness, social conscience
    Calvino Rabeni: for instance
    Storm Nordwind: That's an assumption that there is one. What is it based on?
    Calvino Rabeni: I can see I won't get far with this line
    Paradise Tennant: :) I am going to have scoot ...my apologies but I have logged quite a few thousand air miles in the last few days and I am fading :) I wish you all a very good night .. lots of middle ground and interesting thoughts !.
    Storm Nordwind: Take care and rest well!
    Calvino Rabeni: :) thanks paradise -fly well
    Storm Nordwind: It seems a while since I saw you here Benedizione, if I am not mistaken! :)
    Benedizione Vita: it may have been, storm
    Benedizione Vita: though I have been here almost every day, I think
    Benedizione Vita: at least once
    Benedizione Vita: I often drop in late
    Storm Nordwind: I think our times do not normally intersect
    Benedizione Vita: it may indeed be so :)
    Benedizione Vita: and I seemed to doze off this evening, almost in RL as well haha
    Benedizione Vita: it was a long night of dancing...
    Storm Nordwind: I noticed!
    Storm Nordwind: RL dancing? Or SL?
    Calvino Rabeni: Where did you get your robe, Storm?
    Benedizione Vita: RL
    Benedizione Vita: SL dancing doesn't make me sleepy, unless I do it for a LOOOONG time :)
    Storm Nordwind: Hmm... good question Calvino. From some temple somewhere. And I modfied the color somewhat
    Storm Nordwind: Haha Benedizione!
    Benedizione Vita: how do I make this thing laugh again?
    Storm Nordwind: Most of the robe seems to be made by Giorno Brando
    Calvino Rabeni: Have you a history with temple?
    Benedizione Vita: \chuckle
    Storm Nordwind: To make your avatar laugh Benedizione, try activating the gesture
    Storm Nordwind: Type ctrl-G to find out which ones you have
    Benedizione Vita: odd, but it doesn't chuckle loud enough for me to hear
    Storm Nordwind: I guess you found them!
    Benedizione Vita: can you hear it?
    Storm Nordwind: The chuckle is very quite, yes
    Storm Nordwind: I've taken my headphones off, so no!
    Benedizione Vita: who yawned?
    Storm Nordwind: Sorry, what was the question about temples, Calvino?
    Calvino Rabeni: If you lived in one
    Storm Nordwind: In RL, no. In SL, I have built some yes.
    Storm Nordwind: I spend a lot of time in RL in a temple or two :)
    Storm Nordwind: But I am not ordained in this life, and they rarely accomodate married lay
    Calvino Rabeni: I was envious of the temple opportunities for lay people in thailand
    Calvino Rabeni: nothing like it in the West
    Storm Nordwind nods
    Storm Nordwind: Have you visited?
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes
    Storm Nordwind: I have been close by, in Penang, but Kek Lok Si is as far as I got!
    Calvino Rabeni: Where is K L S?
    Storm Nordwind: Right in the center of Penang island. It's a large temple dedicated to Kuan Yin with (IIRC) a 120ft statue of her
    Storm Nordwind: Hmmm... Wikipedia says 30.2m :)
    Calvino Rabeni: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_iX-ZtJGf14...0/100_3572.JPG
    Calvino Rabeni: I liked that these temples are constantly under construction and expansion
    Calvino Rabeni: through donations, mostly
    Storm Nordwind: yes. I love the feeling of pure non-proselytizing devotion that shines through in these places
    Calvino Rabeni: and the many creative ways to give offerings
    Calvino Rabeni: This country would be much helped, if retired people had a place to go for a retreat every month, instead of staying home and being isolated
    Storm Nordwind: Though I have been to many 'impressive' temples and monasteries in the UK too.
    Calvino Rabeni: It is the ubiquity
    Benedizione Vita: are you in the US, calvino?
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes
    Storm Nordwind: I'm not sure that any mandated retreats would help any but a minority!
    Calvino Rabeni: An opportunity available to all
    Storm Nordwind: Yes... but people do find there communities and survive and thrive...
    Storm Nordwind: though I'm speaking of my old country, not my new home
    Storm Nordwind: about which I know only the bare bones so far
    Calvino Rabeni: In the US, there is a native american tradition
    Calvino Rabeni: for all the problems of genocide and cultural appropriation
    Calvino Rabeni: it is still a good thing to have
    Benedizione Vita: what is the tradition?
    Calvino Rabeni: Not sure whether UK / europe have equivalents
    Storm Nordwind: Yes perhaps. But it seems that in the US, it all seems to be driven by profit rather than by social caring.
    Calvino Rabeni: what do you see, or mean by "it all"
    Storm Nordwind: In the US, I see the isolation you mention. I see a fear and guilt driven society. And I see the almighty dollar rules. The cultural psychology is very different in the UK...
    Storm Nordwind: different values, different vocabulary even
    Calvino Rabeni: There are many separte "first nations" with their distinctions, but they often claim a unified world view
    Calvino Rabeni: that is nature-oriented, maybe shamanic
    Storm Nordwind: I am not elevating one above the other
    Calvino Rabeni: OK, talk about UK difference, please
    Calvino Rabeni: for contract
    Calvino Rabeni: contrast, I meant
    Storm Nordwind: contract?
    Storm Nordwind: oh :)
    Benedizione Vita: no, contract--you are bound by your word! :)
    Storm Nordwind laughs
    Benedizione Vita: but on that note, I'm going to have to slip off to bed... goodnight, storm and calvino
    Calvino Rabeni: good night, don't contract too much :)
    Storm Nordwind: It would take a very long time Calvino!
    Benedizione Vita: actually, one tends to expand while sleeping--get a bit taller because the vertebral disks re-expand :)
    Storm Nordwind: Even the ideas and words have different underlying nuances that are fundamental
    Calvino Rabeni: Broad brush
    Storm Nordwind: Hmm...
    Storm Nordwind: Here's an interesting observation... you might not think it relevant though...
    Storm Nordwind: People here say to me: "You're such a leftie Storm. Such a socialist!"... whereas in the UK, I'm pretty much in the centre of everything politically
    Storm Nordwind: Now it's interesting to consider why that should be
    Calvino Rabeni: listens
    Storm Nordwind: What is the different in social attitude that leads to such a halfway sideways shift in the spectrum - like a strange Doppler effect!
    Storm Nordwind: There are many reasons of course. Some come from the short history of the US, and the reasons why people came here in the first place. It is still a very young country
    Calvino Rabeni: I have ideas, but welcome your outsider's view
    Calvino Rabeni: YEs, I am thinking along those lines
    Calvino Rabeni: Class blindness is part of the social contract
    Calvino Rabeni: built into the mythology of the country's identity
    Storm Nordwind: And the space!! The UK has 20% of the US population yet we have only enough space as to be less than the area of the state of Colorado!
    Calvino Rabeni: Plenty of space is definitely part of the myth
    Calvino Rabeni: The rural vs urban divide
    Storm Nordwind: So if you don't want to interact with people, you don't have to - and that has become part of the culture with many ramifications
    Calvino Rabeni: right
    Calvino Rabeni: The frontier myth
    Storm Nordwind: Still there
    Calvino Rabeni: also, protestantism
    Storm Nordwind: That is shared with the UK after all
    Storm Nordwind: Henry VIII did all that!
    Calvino Rabeni: UK has flipped between protestant and catholic various times?
    Storm Nordwind: I think to suggest that would be an exaggeration
    Calvino Rabeni: WHo smashed the stained glass and iconic art?
    Storm Nordwind: There have been phases
    Calvino Rabeni: It is in the awareness of the citizens, probably
    Storm Nordwind: That was 500 or so years ago
    Storm Nordwind: The Catholic period was considerably shorter than the pagan periods before it
    Storm Nordwind: Although there was more "flipping" then
    Calvino Rabeni: Is there a pagan residue that is still active?
    Storm Nordwind: Depends what you mean by active
    Storm Nordwind: There are many pagan religions that thrive in the UK
    Calvino Rabeni: Functioning as a counterweight to the prevailing worldview
    Storm Nordwind: There is no single counterweight
    Storm Nordwind: There are many
    Storm Nordwind: Just as there are many pagan religions, and always were
    Calvino Rabeni: But the have a collective center of gravity different than the mainstream? Or are they thoroughly integrated?
    Storm Nordwind: And in different parts of the UK, there are strong interfaith communities
    Storm Nordwind: There is no simple rule. Some are outside. Some are very integrated
    Storm Nordwind: Same with the "world" religions
    Calvino Rabeni: So what are some of the salient effects?
    Storm Nordwind: That depends on your viewpoint, who you are and where you view it from!
    Storm Nordwind: In some places, there is a high tolerance. I'll give you an example
    Storm Nordwind: There is the town of Ipswich, in East Anglia
    Storm Nordwind: about 70 miles to the NE of the capital city of London
    Storm Nordwind: Ipswich is in the county of Suffolk
    Storm Nordwind: And there is a local branck of the nationwide radio company BBC
    Storm Nordwind: called Radio Suffolk
    Storm Nordwind: On the national BBC, every morning thet broadcast "Though for the Day"
    Storm Nordwind: For about three minutes
    Storm Nordwind: It's an interlude usually spoken by a religious minister
    Storm Nordwind: from some religion - so I include rabbi here
    Storm Nordwind: Now the religions represented by this tradition - that's broadcast it prime mroning commuting time as has been for at least 50 years...
    Storm Nordwind: are a fairly small batch
    Storm Nordwind: the usual suspects!
    Storm Nordwind: But not so on BBC Radio Suffolk
    Storm Nordwind: There they rotate between a much wider variety of religions
    Storm Nordwind: and when the broadcast every morning to their much smaller audience they may have a Christian, Nahai, Jew, pagan, Hindu... you name it
    Storm Nordwind: It is a local pocket of religious tolerance
    Storm Nordwind: *Bahai
    Storm Nordwind: I used to broadcast roughly once every 6 weeks as a Heathen (germanic pagan). A friend interleaved offset by 3 weeks as a Druid. It was refreshing to here such diverse views!
    Calvino Rabeni: does a pagan background account for this pocket?
    Storm Nordwind: Not really. It was like that anyway. Although recorded paganism goes back 1500 years in that area
    Calvino Rabeni: I have a sense interreligious dialogue is on the increase
    Calvino Rabeni: in USA that is
    Storm Nordwind: What do you mean by " interreligious dialogue"?
    Calvino Rabeni: Venues that represent a variety of traditions
    Storm Nordwind: Is it limited to mainstream?
    Calvino Rabeni: hmmm, well it is hard to tell what is happening on the fringes and in the cults
    Calvino Rabeni: visibility in the mainstream i think is increasing
    Calvino Rabeni: although I have no statistics
    Storm Nordwind: That's a different approach to the UK. They keep their own venues but they talk to each other and sometimes share the same public forum (like the BBC), but the rest of the time they dance around each other peacably, rather than mixing together
    Calvino Rabeni: for example http://speakingoffaith.publicradio.org/index.shtml
    Calvino Rabeni: in public media, others in academic settings
    Storm Nordwind: It's interesting for me to watch. Even fun! This is not meant to sound patronizing, but these things will no doubt happen in this way in a young country.
    Calvino Rabeni: there is a blindness to class issues
    Calvino Rabeni: part of the social contract of the new country
    Storm Nordwind: Are you saying that the issues exist but are ignored or denied?
    Calvino Rabeni: yes
    Storm Nordwind: Very few places on earth are any different I suspect!
    Calvino Rabeni: no, i think it's different in older countries, e.g. UK, than here
    Calvino Rabeni: I think it accounts for the spectrum shift you mentioned earlier
    Storm Nordwind: No. It just manifests in more subtle ways. Even in progressive countries like the Netherlands, the conservative undertone remains
    Calvino Rabeni: You mean, they are blind to class there also?
    Storm Nordwind: No. Some can be. Some believe that the classless society has arrived. But this is belied by their behaviour and the way the socities work!
    Calvino Rabeni: here there is a tacit denial that class exists
    Storm Nordwind: Some are very conscious of class and seek to maintain it
    Calvino Rabeni: And the structure of class as an idea seems different
    Storm Nordwind: Oh I haven't seen any such denial! Class blares at me from every part of town
    Calvino Rabeni: How so?
    Storm Nordwind: Hmm...
    Storm Nordwind: The lack of automatic social caring means that the charity trickle down effect is overrelied upon. I see the effects of that all over
    Storm Nordwind: The haves and have nots are starkly contrasted here
    Storm Nordwind: On a macro and micro level
    Calvino Rabeni: I question that as being your view of it as an outsider. The identity issues are different.
    Storm Nordwind: I am an outsider to everywhere. I am a nomad. I have had more than 40 so -called permanent addresses! I can see the differences and similarities wherever i go!
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, you have that advantage
    Calvino Rabeni: what you see is not necessarily apparent to them
    Storm Nordwind: Oh sure
    Storm Nordwind: For example, the people round here scarely know that Denver has some of the worst drivers in the world! >;->
    Calvino Rabeni: you know the marxist idea of "false consciousness"?
    Storm Nordwind: I am not an expert on Marx - other than Groucho
    Calvino Rabeni: I am not a marxist, but there are some parts of the analysis that make some sense
    Calvino Rabeni: Why do the exploited not rebel? was the question.
    Storm Nordwind: I think people run from the whole package, rather than cherry picking
    Storm Nordwind: And his answer?
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, perhaps that makes sense
    Calvino Rabeni: They don't have an identity as members of an oppressed group, is why
    Calvino Rabeni: They have bought into a dream that denies their exploitation
    Calvino Rabeni: and don't have an accurate assessment
    Storm Nordwind: And that's the same tool that the American Right use
    Calvino Rabeni: therefore, no ability for collective action and mobilization on class-related issues
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, of course
    Storm Nordwind notes the irony
    Calvino Rabeni: It all depends on that blindness
    Storm Nordwind: The blindness is self-sustained, consciously sustained
    Calvino Rabeni: Is that blaming the oppressed?
    Calvino Rabeni: I don't see how that could work.
    Storm Nordwind: That would be too sweeping a statement
    Storm Nordwind: very many people seek comfort in the familiar. They do not want change. Not even all the progressives
    Storm Nordwind: Most people are risk averse
    Storm Nordwind: for most of the time
    Storm Nordwind: It takes a special time and a special stimulus to change that
    Storm Nordwind: and sometimes a special leader
    Storm Nordwind: or incentive
    Storm Nordwind: but they slip back
    Storm Nordwind: to the new stable level
    Calvino Rabeni: They don't really write the menu
    Storm Nordwind: Even my own life, which is full of change enough five of most other people's lifetimes, has periods of quiet where I'm not sure whether I can change again, or even if i want to!
    Calvino Rabeni: Anyway, it's too much to attribute informed consent to the kind of "choices" that are made
    Calvino Rabeni: Sounds like you think you ought to
    Storm Nordwind: It's something I am constantly doing in one way or another. I never use the word "ought". Not in my vocabulary. Relegate it alongside "should"!
    Calvino Rabeni: Well, are you sure - why would you think "I'm not sure whether I can change"?
    Storm Nordwind: Laziness
    Storm Nordwind: Pure and simple
    Calvino Rabeni: No such thing, I think
    Storm Nordwind chuckles
    Storm Nordwind: And why do you think that?
    Calvino Rabeni: It's a split attitude, the slave driver and the resistor
    Storm Nordwind: That's a very narrow view it would seem
    Calvino Rabeni: Well, how do you account for it? Laziness for most, is a judgment
    Calvino Rabeni: Efficiency is different
    Storm Nordwind: Judgment might be too strong a word. It has a lot of rational baggage with it.
    Storm Nordwind: Efficiency is very different true
    Calvino Rabeni: So what do you make of "temptation"?
    Calvino Rabeni: People are offered choices, they take them
    Storm Nordwind: But one is constantly determining and acting according to one's values and priorities, whether of not it is done rationally
    Storm Nordwind: A taken choice betrays a person's value and priorities.
    Storm Nordwind: For most people these are not fully known
    Calvino Rabeni: According to Marx, religion was the opiate of the masses. Nowadays it is not that - it is entertainment.
    Storm Nordwind: Simply because they have not really thought about them
    Calvino Rabeni: WHen they make that choice - is it laziness?
    Calvino Rabeni: I doubt that thinking would cause much change
    Calvino Rabeni: Is there a moral free-agent who is simply misinformed rationally?
    Storm Nordwind: becoming aware of what matters most to you is the first step. most people never make that step and they operate on the criteria set by others
    Calvino Rabeni: well, most people use the menu provided for them, so in a sense, what happens becomes structural on a level beyond the individual
    Calvino Rabeni: the entertainment industry is a machine
    Storm Nordwind: but I suspect they can be taught otherwise
    Calvino Rabeni: it makes the menus
    Calvino Rabeni: they may be able to be taught, ues
    Calvino Rabeni: yes
    Storm Nordwind: I have no truck with the entertainment industry myself. :)
    Calvino Rabeni: a kind of moral or spiritual education, that would be
    Storm Nordwind: Just fitting someone for making the most out of life - as much as they want to
    Calvino Rabeni: why should they have to make the choice "alone"?
    Calvino Rabeni: Not saying, that you are saying that
    Storm Nordwind: Choice is a long way down the road. They need the first steps first
    Calvino Rabeni: I just think, large scale changes happen on a collective level
    Storm Nordwind: Give me an example
    Calvino Rabeni: Sure, people are likely to give blood, if it is something that a significant number of their peers do.
    Calvino Rabeni: Likewise for exercise
    Calvino Rabeni: LIkewise for many things.
    Storm Nordwind: Wait. We are taling about change. What is the collective change in those?
    Storm Nordwind: *talking
    Calvino Rabeni: They work their values in harmony with their surrouding
    Calvino Rabeni: Well, in Thailand, there are traditions, for instance. People give blood on birthday
    Calvino Rabeni: How could something like that be established?
    Storm Nordwind: But your example are things that people do less of now than they did say 50 years ago. Or is that your point?
    Calvino Rabeni: Now, another example - how did people learn not to toss litter out the window of their auto
    Calvino Rabeni: My impression -many populations still do that. Not so much, USA
    Calvino Rabeni: that shifted somehow in USA but not in other places
    Calvino Rabeni: Or the change in smoking habits
    Storm Nordwind: I do not see that as large scale change. Just a very small change affecting a large number of people.
    Calvino Rabeni: I widespread change
    Storm Nordwind: Modoern communication allow that
    Storm Nordwind: But people are fickle and will follow fashion
    Storm Nordwind: and who knows what tomorrow's fashion will be
    Storm Nordwind: or for the next century
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, my point - the fashion can give them better values, or worse
    Storm Nordwind: It can. But of every 1000 fashionable stimuli, perhaps only a small handful take hold
    Storm Nordwind: Who can predict which?
    Calvino Rabeni: How things get established is a mysterious process
    Calvino Rabeni: Anyway storm
    Calvino Rabeni: I have to take someone to dinner about now
    Storm Nordwind: And who has the presumption to prescribe what is best for others?
    Calvino Rabeni: They think together.
    Storm Nordwind: Only sometimes!
    Calvino Rabeni: Thanks for the conversation; TTYL
    Storm Nordwind: Have a good evening!

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