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Everything posted by Reason_Being

  1. Please indicate where I used a straw man. I'm also curious as to why you feel the need to use such aggressive, borderline hostile tone. Lighten up.
  2. Well if you view any questioning of your point of view as a lack of logic then that's too bad, I guess there's no point in discussing this. I see nothing illogical in stating that nukes don't prevent war in all cases, as has been proven by history. Maybe in your mind, logic works in a different way than it does in reality?
  3. I've already stated that having a nuke does not deter war. If that were the case, there would have been no point to the Cold War. And 9/11 wouldn't have happened. Crimea's value to Putin is its strategic military significance. That fact alone suggests that Putin is thinking future war plans. If Crimea eventually falls into the hands of NATO, that would put Russia in a weak position regardless of their nuclear arms. I think you are being short sighted in writing off my argument. By your logic there can never be a World War 3 because everyone has nukes. It doesn't work that way, there is always a threat of war and there is always subtext beneath military stand-offs such as this Ukraine ordeal.
  4. Yes precisely and it's nothing new, really. Everyone knows that Putin wants to keep Crimea out of the hands of NATO as Ukraine drifts towards the EU.
  5. Then explain why Putin is so dead set on getting little old Crimea. If you think he is willing to go through all this just to retain a tiny bit of Russian influence over Europe, I think that's very inaccurate and ignorant of the greater geopolitical context. Why is Crimea so important? Because of its military influence. That's it. Having a nuke does not shield a country from getting attacked. The circumstances under which Russia would actually use a nuke can't be fully predicted, but they sure as hell are not going to drop a nuke on Europe unless the situation is so dire that the mere existence of Russia is in serious jeapordy. Even then, I think the odds of them using a nuke are slim seeing as they are no longer led by ideologues as the Soviet Union was, but merely pragmatic power mongers who just want to retain their wealth should war break out. All in all, the importance of Crimea can only be explained by it's military influence. Therefore Putin's motivations are military. And regardless of whether its a nuclear power, Russia cannot afford to have NATO acquire Crimea. By your logic, it doesn't matter how stagnant a countries military development is... as long as it has a nuke. I think that is absurd.
  6. Yes and I already stated that despite having nukes, their military is outdated. That's why Putin wants Crimea so badly. Because of the missile shield which would give NATO an overwhelming military advantage.
  7. No, I am saying that if NATO gets Crimea, then they will be in a position to wage war with Russia.
  8. If Russia were to take all of Ukraine, I think it would not result in large scale war. The opposite would be true if NATO got a hold of Crimea. Whether you would like to see NATO go to war with Russia is one thing. The reality is that they probably would is another. The stars would be aligned... Russia: a natural resource-rich country which is already an antagonist and which is at an enourmous military disadvantage. If NATO gets Crimea, I don't see Europe just leaving Russia alone and letting it gradually lose influence over Europe over the course of a decade. No, the west will seize the opportunity and a great spike in the price of natural resources will just be one of the consequences.
  9. I think you both might be overlooking a grander geopolitical situation and just how important of a strategic military zone Crimea is. A vital missile shield is located in Crimea. If it falls into the hands of NATO, it will give the West a decisive military edge over Russia because, despite having nukes, Russia's military is outdated and would be ripe for a NATO offensive should the West decide to go to war. Despite being declared as an imperialist by just about everyone, Putin acted in pre-emptive self-defense. By preventing Crimea from falling into the hands of NATO, he might be preventing a future world war. Now, do I think Putin has any moral right to self-defense? Absolutely not. Would I like to see Russia as we know it removed from geopolitical relevance? Sure. However, you all must realize that if Russia fails to secure Crimea, you will have to be prepared to accept world war as a plausible consequence.
  10. I agree. While it is true that the bill itself is stupid and reflects the religious right's misunderstanding of the concepts of rights and liberty, the idea of any person having a right to another person's services/time/life is more fundamental of a folly than the mistakes in the bill (I haven't actually read the through bill, but I get the gist of it). At this point, the veto of this bill is being seen as a great victory for the LGBT community in Arizona, and a victory for "civil rights", which means that any attempt to bring forth a new law which properly protects freedom of discrimination will be met with incredible resistance as it is will be seen as "regressive" as opposed to "progressive" civil rights policy.
  11. Israel an apartheid state? That is simply laughable. There are Arabs in Israel's government, Arabs teaching in their schools, Arabs who enjoy more freedoms in Israel than they would in any of the Islamist states which circulate this Israeli apartheid nonsense.
  12. Sorry, I know my original question was very brief but I am looking for something more detailed in a response. The scientific method is defined as: "a method of research in which a problem is identified, relevant data are gathered, a hypothesis is formulated from these data, and the hypothesis is empirically tested." (dictionary.com) It's the last two words of that definition which is the source of my confusion on this matter. Science requires empirical testing. How does one conduct scientific experiments while philosophizing? I'm pretty sure that philosophy has been referred to as a science throughout history. It's only recently that the distinction is being made between science and philosophy. My question is whether this distinction is correct. No, science is a specific way of acquiring knowledge.
  13. Is it accurate to categorize philosophy as a branch of science? I would like some clarification on this matter.
  14. Well as a teacher you are entrusted with the safety and welfare of your students. When the children are in danger at school, it is the responsibility of teachers and staff to protect them. I do believe that the teacher had a moral obligation to try to help those students in any way she could. Whether there was even a remotely realistic chance of saving them, I don't know. Not having witnessed the events, this is only speculation on my part but something tells me that one kid with some guns is not an unbeatable adversary if you are an unarmed adult. Maybe she thought she had a chance to make it out alive, but failed in her attempt. If that were in fact the case, I do believe her hero status is warranted. What do you suggest she should have done? Run out of the school with her students left inside with the killer?
  15. The outstanding presence of this conflict in the media is a testament to the power of sensationalism. The tally of civilian deaths in the entire history of the Isarel-Palestine conflict is less than ten thousand. And it is rarely ever mentioned that nearly a quarter of the Palestinian civilians who died in this conflict died at the hands of OTHER PALESTINIANS! (note: I am basing this on wikipedia). Meanwhile, millions (yes, MILLIONS) of people have died as a result of the Congo wars over the last couple decades. I don't remember the last time I had even seen a news report about the Congo on CNN. At least 40,000 have died in Syria over the past year and a half. There is so much violence between muslims in the world today. I don't have the numbers of how many have died in Sunni-Shi'ite battles, but I'd bet my life that the casualty numbers eclipse those of the Israel-Palestine conflict. The fire that fuels the Israel-Palestine conflict is not the Palestinians' desire to have their own state. It's the Islamic worlds refusal to recognize Israel's right to exist, based on its religious and cultural values. Egypt could easily take in all of those so-called "refugees" which could easily assimilate into their culture without anyone even noticing, as they would represent an insignificant fraction of Egypt's overall population.
  16. The culture itself is backwards so I don't understand the OP's claim.
  17. Well, aesthetics is an expression of ethical values. So yes I should have questioned the ethical value of horror rather than the morality of it.
  18. I disagree with your claim that the image is necessarily racist in the context of American culture. When Diablo 3 came out, I did not see a single article or post, in any form of media, accusing Blizzard of being racist. It was not controversial at all. In fact, apart from the controversy around the obama/witch doctor image, I've never noticed much controversy over the image of the witch doctor in any other context. Maybe I'm just sheltered?
  19. Witch doctors are actual people who exist and act as healers/shamens in their tribes. The symbolism of Obama as a witch doctor can simply be construed as Obama wanting to play the role of a mystical healer, which is what he's doing in reality, in a sense. The fact that witch doctors and Obama are both black are unavoidable, because they are both black in reality. One can portray Obama as a witch doctor in order to symbolize his role as a mystical healer without necessarily be alluding to black people as savages. Then again, there is a very good chance that the person who made that image IS a racist. I'd put my money on it. But you can't determine that from the image alone.
  20. I have had close friends who are female. But when I think about it, I was never as close with them as I am with my very best friends. I think that in order to reach a very close level of friendship, a certain amount of shared values are necessary. If I were to find a female who shares so many values with me, I don't think I could help but to view her as a potential mate. After all, if I ever marry someone and have kids, it would be a requirement that she shares my values. So if I were to meet a girl who I have enough in common with to be her platonic best friend, I think it's unavoidable that she would become a sexual prospect. It would never be completely platonic.
  21. Who said anything about DDT being safe for consumption? I wouldn't drink a bottle of Mr. Clean either, that has no bearing on whether it is ethical to prevent people from using it.
  22. Libertarians represent such a wide spectrum of beliefs that I have no problem with Objectivists separating themselves from the Libertarian movement. Apart from emphasizing the word "liberty", the Libertarian movement has done little to define liberty, and never really found any cohesion. There are Libertarians who are anarchists and there are Libertarians who are hardcore christians. As an Objectivist I have no desire to be categorized with those people, not even in the political realm.
  23. I know I wrote "it's" it should be "its"... I've been thinking recently about the merit of horror movies, and the horror genre in general. Is it rational to get pleasure from indulging in fear? Horror is a wide genre, and can contain valuable intellectual themes within the story just like any other genre can. But there are also horror movies in which the only purpose is to instill the emotion of fear in the viewer. I'm kind of drawn to movies like this because I like the rush. Do you guys think that's rational?
  24. Well I'll start by saying that it's simply not possible to survive without valuing life. So he's flat out wrong on that account. As for food, I don't see why one would value it if not for the life sustaining properties of it. Maybe you can eat simply because you enjoy the taste of food, but try being deprived of food on a consistent basis and then rejecting an orange because you don't like the taste of citric. Unless you don't value life, you're not going to reject it.
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