• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Profile Information

  • Gender
  1. General US Politics

    I agree.....If under Clinton somebody who is responsible and knowledgeable about this had been appointed, in this aspect it would have been better if Trump had lost....There are other things though, that are equally bad, like (if I remember correctly) she said she was willing to start new wars, rather than resolve with diplomacy (although I am not sure anymore which country she was referring to, and whether it was really worded like that, so don't quote me on that), wars are a big disaster too.....That's one the reasons I have a hard time to decide who can bring more trouble..... Thanks for the link, I will read the thread now and maybe re-post some parts of this post there, if here it was the wrong topic...
  2. General US Politics

    While I am not good in understanding most of things about politics and have never made really a "choice" for myself to form an opinion which one of the 2 was a lesser evil, Clinton or Trump, right now there is one thing in particular that bothers me very much. Already more than once Trump has expressed his support for characters who are by no means interested in maintaining the natural environment clean, as long as the pollution brings them money. Like that Scott Pruitt character who has been put in the Environmental Protection Agency, just to make a random example. Then, all those speeches about global warming and climate changes danger being a "hoax". I am not surprised that Trump himself or the big financial tycoons say so, after all, they have everything to gain if they can spend less money on protecting nature. What amazes me (in a negative way) is that a number of "normal" common people (not politicians or big "moneybags"/financial tycoons) actually believe the statement that global warming and other dangers for the environment are "hoaxes" (invented by "communists", if you listen to them), to the point they insult the scientists who warn people about those things and insult those politicians who actually paid at least some attention to the issue, whatever the country they are from. The weird thing is that, as I said, it's not just the "people at the top" who have everything to gain, who say so. It's the "normal" people who gain absolutely nothing from reducing the money used to save the environment. Why Trump and the others on the same level as him say so, I understand, even though I despise the reason behind it. But why normal people can say so with so much passion, that I cannot understand. There is so much hatred in their posts, towards the ones who spend much money on protecting natural environment, that they sound like crazy zombies, honestly. And the last thing about Trump's attitude towards the issue that imo is really upsetting: http://motherboard.vice.com/read/all-references-to-climate-change-have-been-deleted-from-the-white-house-website To avoid misunderstandings: I don't live in the USA, I live in Italy, therefore I haven't voted in these elections, and even if I lived in the USA, I am not a supporter of Trump or Clinton and opposed to one in favor of the other. I still think that Hillary Clinton would have been a bad alternative either, for very different reasons. When I read Trump had won I thought "well, whatever, maybe hopefully he is the lesser evil of the 2 of them....". Shortly after that I was already convinced he was not. That doesn't make me sympathize with Clinton though, there are many other points in both their political programs that I probably don't even know about (I haven't read about the subject in details enough), maybe there are both good and bad things. To sum it up, I still have a hard time to decide which of the 2 of them is the lesser evil. But the point is, I am really upset about what is going to happen to the environment, in the USA at least. You have beautiful landscapes, animals, at least there still is something to save. Usually, countries start caring about nature protection only when it's almost destroyed. In the USA it's not yet reduced to the extinction and complete destruction, it would be sad if they only realized the mistake too late, when everything is already in ruins and polluted. Here the talk was mostly about climate change, but from what I read, Trump's position towards the rest of the environment isn't more responsible either. He doesn't care, that's for sure. It depends on points of view, how much this issue is actually important, but to me it is one of the priorities. I would really like please to hear your opinions about this specific issue, since I am quite upset by where things are going
  3. Tradeoff

    I would improve and increase a quality like empathy or altruism, things like that, in a way such a quality takes absolute priority no matter what, so that violent conflicts simply don't take place or die down. I mean, just to make an example, if a terrorist wants to blow up a theater or a marketplace for religious or political reasons, he is unable to force himself to activate the bomb, being overcome by emotions and thoughts about what his would-be-victims feel.
  4. Possible big political changes in Russia http://europe.newsweek.com/russias-most-famous-cat-politician-announces-presidential-bid-532642?rm=eu https://latestnewsresource.com/en/news/breaking-news-barnaulskij-kot-barsik-zajavil-o-svoih-prezidentskih-ambitsijah It started last year as a mock "campaign" to make this cat mayor of Barnaul after people got really tired of all local corruption scandals and all new candidates presented after the previous ones resigned, were equally corrupt, so people formed this kind of movement to call a local cat for mayor (at least he won't take bribes, extort, etc) that was supposed to be a joke initially, although due to the serious corruption situation there, it seems even a piece of wood or a stone would make a better mayor than any of the local politicians. Anyway, it seems the idea has become so popular that now they want him to become president, not just a provincial mayor, and I see newspapers write about this cat not just in Russia, but as you see, in English speaklng countries too, then I also saw in Italian, Spanish, German, haven't yet checked other languages It would be great if he kicked out Putin and gave dignity to my homeland! I live in Italy now, but am from Russia (moved to Italy years ago). Hopefully, the Russian nationalists won't harass Barsik with their idiotic slogans like "Russia for Slavs only! Go back to Scotland!" etc (Barsik is a Scottish Fold cat after all) :D: By the way, the writing on the photo at the beginning of the article from the 2nd link says "Only a mouse doesn't vote for Barsik!"
  5. General US Politics

    I am really sorry about your mom and dad.... About the war on drugs, I agree it isn't having much success, and imo other approaches are needed, not just police arrests, but maybe different cultural education, making it in such a way that people start perceiving drugs as something they wouldn't even want to try, then helping the users to get off and not consider then criminals (unless they get completely "bonkers", like when in advanced stages of addiction, if an addict doesn't have enough money for a dose, they would steal or rob, even kill to get it, unfortunately, that's another reason I think "hard" drugs are dangerous). Something like that, I don't really know..... About alcohol: indeed it does more harm than "light" drugs like marijuana, so does smoking, yet both are, legal, it's ironic somehow. And, while making alcohol illegal didn't work and only made organized crime rich during the Prohibition years, even though it became legal again, today there isn't such a desperate national alcohol problem in the USA as there was in the pre-Prohibition years. If people were as relatively moderate in drinking back then, prohibition would likely never have been suggested to be introduced as a law. I mean, this shows that people can be stopped from mass drinking themselves to uncosciousness or death without resorting to law pressure, but with cultural education instead, imo it would be good if the same could be done with drugs (at least with "hard" ones). Well, it says "Portugal decided to treat possession and use of small quantities of these drugs as a public health issue, not a criminal one. The drugs were still illegal, of course. But now getting caught with them meant a small fine and maybe a referral to a treatment program -- not jail time and a criminal record.". That makes sense, meaning that it helps the user treatment program; if they treated these people as criminals, it wouldn't certainly harm the big drug trade, it would be punishment for the sake of it. So it's not like they declared everything legal and buyable in whatever quantity people want, but separated the cases when it's obvious rehabilitation is a better solution. If a person is an addict who has not yet turned violent, it makes no sense putting him/her in jail. If it's a dealer, theoretically they could go to prison, but serious organized crime figures don't get caught with small doses in their pocket, they are smarter than that. So, if they try this another approach and if it has worked, it's good then. If they legalized the big capitals made by the top drug lords, almost all of whom are murderers too (not meaning overdoses, but contract killings) then THAT would be a bitter irony, but it's not like anyone is doing that yet.
  6. General US Politics

    If we put it that way, it did no good, but then you can the same about a successfully carried out premeditated murder as well. Murder being illegal hasn't prevented the individual from killing another individual, but nobody says we should legalize murder. Also another thing about a potential legalization of the "heaviest" and deadliest drugs: if they are legalized, there will probably be an initial massive buying "boom", and the consequent enormous growing number of addictions and therefore, of lethal overdoses. Some time later, the situation will probably become more stabilized, but will it be really worth it, considering the quantity of dead bodies left during the "initial wave"?
  7. General US Politics

    Mi sincere condolences for all the deaths and I hope your cousin gets better... But especially considering these tragedies, it's even harder for me to understand that your are saying that even heroin should be allowed. Life is more important that freedom imo, because the word "freedom" can be used as a very extensive concept. Theoretically, somebody could say that complete anarchy and chaos is freedom too, even more, it's the epitome of complete freedom if we interpret it literally. I think the concept of resposibility is more important that those kinds of freedom that are based on temporary impulsve decisions. On the other hand, you have mentioned depression; I don't know what was the case exactly, I don't want to invade anybody's privacy, but cases involving depression or worse are completely different: if people are depressed and tired of life, and in some other cases even take drugs and drink themselves to death on purpose, because they actually WANT to die, or at least the REALIZE they will die and still continue with this because they don't care, not being able to bear with the hard life, depression, tragedies etc, this is completely different in my view. I don't "condemn" such people in any way and feel genuinely sorry for them. I myself suffer from depression (not to this point yet, but still) and can imagine how it can hurt. What I was talking about in the previous post, weren't cases like these, but cases when people become heroin addicts for fun or for being curious without realizing what they are doing, later they would be happy to get off the drug themselves, but it's too late in the advanced stages of addiction. It's not just about "morality" because if we talk about that, somebody will surely start to derail the discussion about the non-existance of such thing or about it being different from person to person. I am talking about the concept of "responsibility" and respect for the feelings of family members and friends first of all. But again. it's very important to me that you understand that I draw a clear line between people who sink into alcohol and drugs or kill themselves because of depression, hardships of life, or psychological problems, I don't know etc, and it's a competely different thing when somebody does it just for fun or curiosity or to "make a point" that they want to spend their money on whatever they like, just because they think this will show their alleged "independence". But in reality, what's worse, being dependent on strict parents (for example) or being dependent on heroin? Strict parents at least don't kill you quickly....
  8. General US Politics

    Even heroin? I understand about "light" things like marijuana etc, but heroin is deadly, lethal; just because people inject it into themselves without being physically forced by the dealers, it doesn't mean they actually want to die. They might be simply naive, overconfident, in some cases stupid, they might think "I will try what it feels like just to have more knowledge", whatever, but once they understand it's time to get off, it's too late, they can't and die. I know a person who is a former heroin addict and managed to get off it (as far as I know, these are are exceptions, people can get off cocaine, maybe ecstasy, I am not really sure, but heroin is one of the deadliest and quickest to kill). Is there even one person in the world who, after going through the state of nearly dying from heroin, but managing to get off and saving themselves and is still thinking it was worth it and willing to try again? Last but not least, I think the feelings of the relatives and friends who don't want to see their dear ones die of drugs, they should also be considered and respected. I once said this on another forum and was simply told "it's not their choice to make" or "it's not their business", something like that. If people dismiss the concern of their family members, where will the world be going? Apart from the fact they are wasting great sums of money on heroin, stealing from the family too....
  9. #trudeaueulogies

    Concering Mussolini's fascism in Italy, just on observation: from what I read (I studied in Milan, high school and university, although I am Russian), Fascism is considered slightly different from Hitler's Nazional Socialism and Stalin's most extreme form of Communsim (with his death it was still an oppressive regime compared to democracy, but anyway I suppose it could be said that before Stalin's death things were definitely different that after he was out of the picture). I mean, Fascism is different because Mussolini's control over all aspects of Italian society wasn't as complete as Hitler's and Stalin's in their countries. There were some parts where his power was limited and he knew it. He couldn't throw the king in jail, to make the most oblvious example (actually, it happened the other way around on a certain point), the army was more loyal to the king than Mussolini if I remember correctly what I read. This is just an observation, I mean, it's not like Mussolini was a better person that other dictators or whatever, it's just that he was weaker in his own country. Stalin, Hitler, Mao etc were way more powerful. Although to be honest, in my opinion the worst dictator of all was Pol Pot. He killed less people than Stalin and Hitler only because his country was smaller and therefore with a smaller population. Usually dictators kill many people to achieve something, like for example Stalin thought that with his terror, executions, gulags and over-working people to death, the country would become stronger. Theoretically, under him the country was a military power etc, although the end certainly doesn't justfy the means, and I have nothing positive say about the concept of military and "war" in general etc, but that would be off-topic....What I mean is that most dictators want to achieve something they could use to their advantage or to the advantage of the country as a political entity, although completely disregarding the value of human life and committing genocide. Their motives are clear, although they don't constitute justification in any way. Pol Pot's massacres, on the other hand, were completely pointless. They didn't bring any order, not even the "order of a graveyard", they didn't make one social class stronger by making the other suffer, they didn't help to make the country stronger in any way, nothing, he didn't even manage to have any real benefit for himself and his "friends" at expense of the Cambodian people. At the end he was overthrown by his own regime accomplices, which doesn't happen to totalitarian dictators that often. Usually, they die a natural death while still in power and people in their country can start criticizing them openly only after that. Or maybe, rather than "worst" (since after all it's the number of victims that is the most important factor I think), I shoud say he was the most stupid and incapable of them all.
  10. #trudeaueulogies

    I agree, but here it was business with gangsters, not legal international companies. And the ones caught in Cuba after the revolution didn't become Castro's loyalists, they were just kicked out. Since he was brutal with the political opposition, why being merciful with gangsters? If Pablo Escobar and the Colombian cartels helped him to make money later, that would be an explanation, since none of the 2 sides during the Cold War had scruples about the sources of income, as long as it helped to harm the other side. But the ones briefly imprisoned following the revolution, they were mostly Cosa Nostra, they were anti-Castro and, according to some historians. were even used by the CIA in a later abandoned plot aimed to kill Castro. So why didn't he just kill them when he could, considering that he had no scruples with killing political oppostion? That's what I don't get.....
  11. #trudeaueulogies

    There is one question, would be interesting to hear your opinions: When Castro came to power and the organized crime syndicates active under Battista lost their "strongholds" in Cuba, why didn't he put away for life or shoot the ones he managed to catch? He even had Santo Trafficante in jail, yet chose to release him, while he could have changed the mafia history instead. I thought, mob bosses weren't considered as a "socially friendly element" by the Communists? On the other hand, if they really did business with Pablo Escobar, it's said especially Raul Castro was involved in drug trafficking....I don't know. But in this case, they weren't "Communists by ideology", but just pretended to be that. A Communist leader letting go or even doing business with financial tycoons (criminal ones in this case), makes as much sense as an African American becoming a Ku Klux Klan leader, or a Nazi concentration camp executioner being of Jewish origins, imo. What did he exactly hope to accomplish by sending the crime bosses abroad free? That they would return to the USA and disrupt its economy?
  12. What's the point of freezing somebody dead already? Theoretically there may be a cure for cancer in the future, but not a technique to resurrect the dead...
  13. Death Penalty

    I disagree with some points here. Killing for vengeance isn't the same as killing for fun (at least, in many cases it isn't). Whoever kills for fun is by default a sadist, a manifestation of pure evil. Killing for vengeance is a wide concept. It may be vengeance over an insignificant thing, like when a street gangster feels "disrespected" because a passerby gave him a "wrong" glance or something like that. It's another thing when, for example, a powerful gangster killed many people and always got acquitted due to his connections, then some grieving relative whose family was slaughtered by him goes and kills him, since he hasn't anything to lose anymore and doesn't care about going to prison. With that action, he might have saved somebody else's life by the way. In my opinion, in REAL LIFE situations in which not only does the victim definitively deserve to die, but the murderers make feel bad for them and deserve compassion, such situations are quite rare, but theoretically they are possible. For example, I don't know if anyone here has watched the Japanese detective anime series like "Detective Conan" and "Kindaichi shounen no Jikenbo". In those ones (for some reason which I would like myself to know) the victims are almost always presented as ultimate scumbags, while the murderers are originally good people who turned to private vengeance only after seeing the law enforcement wouldn't do anything to punish the original perpetrators (who later become "the victims" during the plot), so the only way to stop the crimes committed by those individuals and to make them answer for the deaths of their victims is to kill them, since the law is either inept or corrupt. I understand that those situations are 95% not realistic and made up just to create an entertaining murder mystery with an element of drama. I quoted these examples just to say that, in my opinion, it would be too simplistic to classify all murders as equally "bad". There are different cases, I think it's impossible to feel equally bad for a whacked gangster and a child killed by a serial killer; or, it would be strange to feel the same disdain for a robber who killed an elderly person for 2 dollars and a ruined businessman who killed a mafia boss responsible for the slaughter of his family and protected by the corrupt police. As for my position towards the death penalty, I would say I am against it. Mostly because there can always be wrongful convictions, but also because, even if the criminal is 100% guilty, somebody has to be the executioner. How would the family of this person feel if it's his/her regular job? I mean, they come to dinner after work in the evening, their family asks them "how is it going today?". He answers "oh, nothing, just electrocuted 2 gangsters, had a lethal injection for a serial killer and hanged 3 robbers who shot shop owners". I mean, it would be a quite creepy atmosphere to live in, when you know your family member has to be surrounded by death everyday and actively participate in it. It's as if the convicted criminals extended their malefic influence on somebody's families, condemning them to live a life where they are continuosly reminded of death, death and death again etc, and can't even be sure that their family members who work as executioners, won't turn violent themselves sooner or later. After all, if they have to kill convicted criminals every day, it's very much likely they become either cynical and stop appreciating human lives, even those of innocents; or they can simply go crazy after seeing so much death, if they aren't psychologically strong enough.
  14. The Ethics of Hurting Animals

    I am not saying it's ok, but I don't want to die of starvation, so I "sometimes" allow that to myself. But hopefully no more than necessary, and surely not for fun. I blame myself only up to a certain point for that, because I can't blame wolves or lions for hunting to fill their stomachs. It would be 1000 better if I were able not to eat any living being at all, not even plants, but not everybody can force themselves to commit a slow suicide by starvation, you can consider this a negative quality of mine, one of the manifestations of human imperfection. I am not saying I am "good", I just try to be the "lesser evil", in we put it that way.
  15. The Ethics of Hurting Animals

    Immagining yourself to be the object of hunting would answer your question. But you don't want to think about that, do you? It's not that you "can't", you DON'T WANT TO. "An action is only unethical as long as it's to the detriment of the human race". Really? Says who? You, a human yourself? That's hardly an impartial opinion. If some animals were more intelligent, they could have assumed the same self-important position. The very fact that some humans boast about being in the center of the universe and being superior to other species (not just in terms of intelligence, but in terms of priority of who has to live and who has to die), this is by itself the proof that they still have a long way to go to become really "superior". A superior being has humility, not a haughty attitude towards the less developed fellow beings. Hypothetically speaking, if an alien civilization more advanced than humanity started treating humans in the same way you suggest to treat animals, you wouldn't like that at all, would you? And before you say what I suspect you might say, please, don't derail the discussion by picking on words with observations about aliens most likely not existing. You understand perfectly what I mean anyway, this was just a hypothetical example positioning you as prey, not the hunter, just to make you think about what you would feel or say, if you were treated in the same way as you suggest to treat others. If you think that reflecting about such things is below your dignity, since animals are inferior etc etc then, well, I just keep reading. Phoenix Wright will provide better arguments I think (in this thread I completely agree with him). All this talk about everything being focused on usefulness to humans.....According to you, even the whole eco-system (not just individual animals) should be maintained without damaging it too much, NOT because it has the right to exist and makes the planet more interesting and sometimes (in some places) even more beautiful, but ONLY because it's USEFUL to humans. So, if the eco-system was just a nice decoration and wasn't crucial for humans, then we would have the right to destroy it just because we feel like it? That's an awful position. But again, here every misunderstanding could be solved if you at least tried to immagine YOURSELF to be the "object to be eliminated", but nobody among people who share your opinion ever want to do so.......