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softwareNerd last won the day on December 6 2018

softwareNerd had the most liked content!

About softwareNerd

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    My wife and kid. Software. Finance.

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    55 yrs old
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  1. softwareNerd


    You know when people say they "put two and two together"? That's an example.
  2. softwareNerd

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  3. softwareNerd


    Yup, that's the gist of it. One might say, for example, that Elizabeth-I was a great queen. Unlike Bloody Mary who focused a lot on religion, Elizabeth pulled back the dogs and focused on business. Yet, Elizabeth wasn't all milk and honey. She had her spy masters and torturers. She continued some persecution of Catholics. And so on. Historians can and should evaluate rulers of the past, and they should do so using a standard of rights, but this does not make every rights-violator equal. Many rights-violators were really excellent kings, within the context of their times.
  4. softwareNerd


    It was not meant as a rhetorical tool. It was to judge where DA was coming from. If he'd said he wouldn't thank the framers just as he would not thank colonists, that would help me understand where he's coming from.
  5. softwareNerd


    Do you have a similar opinion on Americans who say "I thank the framers of my constitution", even though the constitution contained a glaring immorality in condoning and further institutionalizing slavery?
  6. softwareNerd


    Hmm... what about this... still contradictory? 1. Capitalism is the only moral political system 2. All other systems are immoral
  7. softwareNerd


    That's a completely different concept though... unless we find Martians and decide they need to be ruled rather than be admitted to our capitalist system.
  8. softwareNerd


    I don;t know what your position is. Maybe I should state the context I was assuming to be obvious: Capitalism is the right/moral system Other system are inferior, and therefore wrong/immoral (monarchy, communism, socialism, fascism, colonialism, plutocracy, theocracy, Plato's rule of the Philosopher) Those two propositions really don't need to be stated in the context of this forum. I assume we all agree. Anything I have posted should be read with that context in mind.
  9. softwareNerd


    No, not really. To be honest, I just want to understand the concept of colonialism that you have in your mind for the duration of this thread. Because if we're talking about different things, then we need to sort that out first. I really don't want a definition as an end in itself, but to understand the concept in your mind. Usually dictionary definitions are too vague for that purpose: they serve someone who does not know what the word means, but do not delve into the concept. My concept of colonialism is either a political or historical concept. As a political concept, it describes the relationship between two countries where the colony is kept as a lesser country than the "mother country". Within that one can have many degrees of "how much lesser"? "how tyrannical?" As a historical concept it refers to the particular practices of European colonialism in the 100-200 years preceding WW-1. So, by my political concept, early American settlers were not colonizers. They were settlers. They themselves were the colonies, with Britain as the colonizer. Settling and pushing existing native people out of their lands is a different thing and deserves a different concept. What the settlers did is different enough from what (say) the French did in Vietnam. It's not about not fitting a definition. It is about two very different set of facts, in reality, that need their own concept (the definition follows, but is less important than the actual differences on the ground). What Europeans did vis-a-vis natives is far more similar to what Europeans did in South Africa. It's a very different type of take-over. A lot of French people settled in Algeria, but if you take a magnifying glass to Algerian cities, countryside and political structures of the early 1900's it's different enough from what one would see in South Africa and even more different from what one sees in North America. So, coming back to colonialism... the political concept in my mind is the one realized in British India, French Vietnam, Italian Ethiopia, etc. It is a concept of an Empire of unequal countries: the concept of one country being the main country, and dictating things to other countries. So, it would include Britain lording it over white-skinned Americans, Turks lording it over so much of the middle-east, Romans lording it over Britain, Venetians lording it over Dalmatia, and so on. By this concept, the Mughals coming to India was not colonialism. They came, and conquered, and became Indian rulers, with no other mother country. Does that make sense? I believe my concept is pretty much the regular concept of "colony" used in History classes. "Colonialism" can be used to name two different concepts. One -- the most popular usage -- describes the modern era where Britain, France, Portugal, etc. had colonies, mostly in Asia. In this concept, the British controlling colonies of caucasian Americans is excluded... because the intent of the concept is to focus on a era. The second, lesser concept of "colonialism" is to describe the practice of having colonies, as such. This one is a concept of political structure that is timeless, and does not focus on an era. So, it would include the Turks, Venetians, Greeks, and lots of others throughout history.
  10. softwareNerd


    I typically skip many posts when I find a particular one of interest, and then ... if I'm in a "dialog" I will typically skip ones that are not from the other person in that dialog (except short ones). Did someone in this thread claim that you can communicate the principles of capitalism (or reason more generally) by enslaving people or otherwise violating their rights? More generally, has someone in this thread actually said that colonialism is a good thing, in the sense of something we should maybe aspire toward, in order to come closer to capitalism?
  11. softwareNerd


    So, if we roll back a few thousand years where there each little village has a chieftain, and one village takes over another village, is that colonialism? When the rulers from the Cairo are take control of the Nile and the cities along its banks and also of the sea-side city of Alexandria, is that colonialism? Or is it colonialism for a few years and then the Egyptian kingdom at some point? Countries have been fighting and taking other countries over for centuries. Is that all colonialism?Or is colonialism only the most recent version, where the one taking over the other was significantly more technologically advanced?
  12. softwareNerd


    "...control by one power over a dependent area or people..." You're willing to use this definition? It has no reality to me...just a floating abstraction. If communist party members ruled USSR and other people obeyed, that too is the rule of one people over another. Is colonialism defined by some type of power structure and lack of certain types of rights, or is is all about race and ethnicity?
  13. softwareNerd


    Wow! Did someone make a claim like that somewhere? Not in this thread, unless it was some post I skipped reading.
  14. softwareNerd


    Could you define colonialism?
  15. softwareNerd


    There are major differences between Europeans coming to the Americas or to Australia. That was settlement, which was very different from the colonization of a people in the sense of British or French running their colonies. Secondly, you have complications like bringing disease, which were never such a major problem when one was dealing with the known and connected land-masses. mass deaths were going to happen even if the Europeans had remained in a peaceful relationship with the natives. Most importantly, the rule of the British, particularly in India was a continuity rather than a discontinuity. The British did not go in and start talking about rights, nor did they try to start westernizing the locals. they did not colonize "India" as a whole, and did not even have ambitions to do so for the first so many decades. They evolved, from being armed traders sticking enforcing their side of some deal, to mercenaries fighting on the side of local chieftains, to becoming local chieftains themselves. So, let's take the case where the Brits took over some tiny "Indian" kingdom by force. Let's say they were unfair to the masses they ruled, let's say they enforced their monopolies in certain trades. It would be fine to judge them negatively for this, but one should judge the previous ruler the same way too. One will usually find that the previous king was also unfair to his citizens and also enforced monopolies so that he could skim a cut. The Brits were a continuity in that type of rule. A change of local dynasty, with much of the local power structure staying in place.