Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

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Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby Keep The Reason » Sun Mar 06, 2016 9:35 am

Yeah, I'm gonna use the forum for a little self-venting and therapy. So sue me.

I moved from my New York roots to the other side of the country (Los Angeles) for two reasons. First, I wanted to get into Hollywood. But second and as important, I simply couldn't stand my idiotic extended family and their clueless views on race, religion, sexuality, and politics. For some 30 years I basked in delightful ignorance of these suburban hillbilly yahoos, but then goddamned Facebook put me in touch with them again.

Oh, at first it was great. Oh, hi, how are you? How've you been? You look great for 30 years of bigotry and religious fanaticism shriveling your heart and brain even more!

So as maybe a window into my psyche, I thought I'd share a bit of these people from whose loins I sprang; I'll protect their privacy but share their words, and how they think. And while I will use that classic "one crazy uncle" model, in this case I'm the "crazy uncle". Most of my extended family agrees with the views of the man I call the "Crazy uncle", and they think I'm the one who is alien to normalcy (maybe they're right). I do want to make it clear my nuclear family is not like what I'm going to show you here. My sisters are fairly reasonable, aren't religiously shanghaied, and my mom is more progressive as well (and, to my surprise, an agnostic).

Ok here goes. I'm only going to share two things, both political (which is why it's here in this thread) and it illustrates the tenor of our discussions:

drumpf liar.jpg
drumpf liar.jpg (80.12 KiB) Viewed 585 times

(I'm the one asking, "But you'd vote for him anyway?")

Today, this:

My Uncle:
Someone asked me if Trump is the only Republican nominee, would I still vote for him? I said yes! Why, because the worst years of America was the last 8 since the American revolution! I don't know about you, but I don't want any more years like the last 8...No, Trump is not my first choice for President, but my last choice! I see more positives in him than I see in the Democrats camp and I will not vote Democrat no matter who the Republican candidate is. Anyone would be better than the person currently in the white house! Let's get it over with! The bleeding hearts out there are going to suffer through prosperity, prayer, saluting the American flag, get used to hearing the term "the President loves America," and GOD BLESS AMERICA! etc,etc!


Mike , Lor and 12 others

Bill Well said BrotherAl!
Like · Reply · 1 · 2 hrs
Karin Agreed Al!
Like · Reply · 1 · 2 hrs
Janet I agree!
Like · Reply · 1 · 2 hrs
Mike Right on Poppa Smurf!
Like · Reply · 1 · 2 hrs
Al (uncle) The worst Republican candidate is still better than the best of the Democrats candidates! That's my opinion!
Like · Reply · 2 · 1 hr
Evie Can't wait to see who comes up as VP. UGH!
Like · Reply · 58 mins
Sandra o Amen Pastor
Like · Reply · 44 mins
George: Well, I know a bait when I see one, lol. I asked that question, and I'm fascinated by the answer, and how people see things.

The last 8 years were the worst since the American Revolution, is that right?
Worse than nearly another 100 years of ongoing slavery?
Worse than 4 years of Civil War where hundreds of thousands died?
Worst than World War 1?
Worst than the Depression which threw millions out of work and destroyed countless businesses and families?
Worse than World War 2?
Worse than the Korean War? The 60 riots in the streets? The Vietnam War years? Nixon having to leave office?
Worse than 3,000 Americans brutally murdered on 9/11 under the Bush administration and countless warnings for 8 solid months previous?
Worse than two wars paid for by credit card, with thousands of Americans killed for weapons that never existed?
Worse than our entire economy almost completely collapsing?

Yeah. I guess so. A recovered economy, the ending of wars, the insuring of millions of Americans so their health can be kept, the reconstitution of the car industry, the opening up of fracking so we are energy self sufficient and gas prices have plummeted under this president -- I guess these really are just the worst times ever.

I think we should tell those 8.7 million people who've gotten back jobs that they are miserable, and should go back to unemployment. Because "prosperity".

There's facts, and then there's Fox.


Most people dismiss this sort of thing as "hyperbole" and "anger" (anger at what I don't know-- things are demonstrably better than they were in 2008). But at the same time, the Drumpf guy is the leading candidate. And we keep hearing about how these types of views don't represent the majority of Americans.

And even I have long considered the vast majority of people to be more or less moderate. But I am shaken in that belief. I'm doing my best to not think the worst of my fellow Americans here, but it's getting harder and harder. I think my uncle and my cousins and a lot of other people really are... just... totally fucking insane.

The claim "the worst 8 years ever" is outright hyperbole, though I think the sentiment is grounded in how they actually perceive things -- but it's the meme one and the response to it that really just drops my jaw.

How does the mind of such people work? They say, "I'm outraged by the lies and the trickery and want it to stop!"

Then -- the SAME PEOPLE post that picture and meme, wherein the guy they are championing (with "reservations"), outright tells them, "I'm going to lie my ass off to you, and con you, and trick you"... and they lap it up as a solution.

Now here's the thing about that Drumpf meme -- it's not even true!

Drumpf People Quote is False

But it doesn't matter if it's false, my uncle still posted it and still said he'd vote for Drumpf anyway thinking the quote was true as he said that (he never bothers to check anything, like most people he just forwards the meme uncritically). So he believes the quote is true but would still vote Drumpf regardless. A massive dissonance.

The thing is, they even ADMIT to the dissonance. My uncle says, "I know he's terrible, but he's better than any Democrat." I ask him "Why do you think that?" and he has literally no answer. I've asked him numerous times to tell me why he thinks Sanders and Clinton are so bad, and he says two words: "Socialist" and "Liar". But-- I point out, Drumpf is specifically saying lies that get exposed every day! You even admit he's a liar. You posted a goddamned picture quoting him as saying he'd lie to you and you're so "dumb" you'd fall for it -- so how is he BETTER than Clinton? And Drumpf also uses corporate welfare at millions of times more than anyone else-- he's used the system time and again to his own personal advantage. So he's far more soft on "socialism" as long as it benefits him and fucks everyone else.

What's even more ironic is that my Unk fought in Europe in WW2 and was nearly killed numerous times (he was a fighter pilot) and he is incapable of seeing the one-to-one relationship of Drumpf to Hitler, which I've listed for him a few times. Basically, he just deletes these threads.

You know what I think? I think these folks really DO like Drumpf but they're afraid to admit it outright because they know a lot of people will consider them racists and assholes and douchebags. So they pretend to "hate Drumpf" but they feel "forced" into voting for him because the other guys are just sooo far much worse!

I know this has a lot to do with tribalism. Mu uncle is an authoritarian -- a born again Christian preacher; you know the type. I think all of this boils down to a certain mindset that sees things in stark blacks and whites and insists their own personal experiences by definition translates to the outside world. Example: He knows some black people who are not in grinding poverty, hence all blacks have equal opportunities and no social pressures any different from anyone else. If there are angry blacks, it's their fault for not "pulling themselves up by their bootstraps." (Or their criminals because they are just uncivilized... but there's no racism in the USA, Obama created that division, end of story).

And he has this bizarre self-contradicting worldview (which frankly I see from some of the people here as well): Jesus will be here any day now. Literally. Any day. This will be a good thing because the world will be destroyed and all the right people will go to Heaven (this includes him) and all the wrong people will go to Hell (this includes me). He absolutely claims to believe this will happen, replete with Raptures and Trumpets and Vials and Horsemen and so on.

At the same time, he states "We must make America strong again!" Because god will bless a strong America! (you can see hints of this in his rant). And so I ask him:

Me: How are these two conflicting things are supposed to work? Does America get destroyed in the Armageddon?"
Him: All things of mankind pass away so yes.
Me: Ok, then how is making America strong going to matter?
Him: We have to be able to say the pledge! And pray in school.
Me: We can say the pledge. People say it all the time. But even if America is strong, will it survive god ending the world?
Him: If we have god's blessing, we will prevail.
Me: But you're saying all things will get swept away. How will America prevail, if all things are supposed to get swept away?
Him: You'd understand if you'd read your bible.
Me: I have read it. I still don't understand. Is America being strong a help to god's plan or a disservice to it? It's like Judas. Is Judas a bad guy, or was he a necessary guy so Jesus could die and be resurrected? If Judas doesn't betray Jesus, Jesus doesn't get crucified and god's plans are thwarted.

(Here where his metaphorical eyes glaze over)

Me (continued): So if America being weak and falling and being destroyed is part of god's plan, isn't trying to get a strong America going to thwart that plan?
Him: Read your bible and you'll understand.

<Thread deleted>

Anyway--- just a glimpse into the world in which I navigated the first 20 years of my life. I hope it was an enjoyable read.
To cut some folks off at the pass, I don't advocate for violence, oppression, genocide, war, hatred or intolerance. Instead, I advocate for education, organization, activism, and the democratic process. ~~ KtR
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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby spongebob » Sun Mar 06, 2016 11:34 am

That's a pretty unsettling glimpse, and I feel your pain. I know dozens of people who are cut from the same cloth. These kind of people scare the shit out of me. It's not because they believe in god and that they are church going Christians. I don't mind that. It's that insane amalgamation of religion, family values, guns and the American Way that totally nauseates me. This is the kind of Christian that makes the entire religion look bad. We have a few on this forum who fit right in there. They are the problem. They are really not much different from Hitler during WWII or the Jihadists of today. It's only a matter of degrees that separates their ideology. Being a believer in god, even being a Christian does not dictate that one has to be this ignorant of reality. But when every fiber of one's being is wrapped up in this nationalistic ideology, this is what you get. This is the reason I am not and never will be involved with any church ever again, even if I did change my beliefs about god. Organized religion is just too steeped in this. For all the good churches do; these kinds of divisions actually do much more harm to society. And even worse; they feel completely justified in their behaviors because that's what they believe the Bible and god want them to do. It's just a sad, sad state of affairs is what it is.

And my final comment on this is that my interpretations of Jesus's message is that the US can go to hell. The Gospel has nothing to do with a nation's prosperity. God not only doesn't care about it, but I believe said god would openly condemn the U.S. for it's ghastly crimes against humanity.

'nuff said.
Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.
~Bertrand Russell

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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby Jesus Raves » Sun Mar 06, 2016 12:12 pm

I wish the answer were as obvious as "insanity", but, as you know, the real answer is closer to brainwashing. From birth to the present day, these people have been brainwashed by parents, by "God", by religious leaders, and by Fox News and its copycats in the conservative mediasphere. I don't consider that insanity, because many of these people are technically psychologically healthy.
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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby spongebob » Sun Mar 06, 2016 2:56 pm

Oh, I thought of a couple of things I forgot to say. It is sad that the bulk of the Democratic-haters can't speak intelligently about the reasons they oppose the party or the candidates. Oh, they can name a few policy decisions and even Hillary's email scandal, but they can do little more than regurgitate what Faux Neuz has told them. They can't really explain what is wrong with the policies in an intelligent and educated way. Take Common Core for example. Almost every opinion piece I read about it's detractors state this as an Obama program intended to brainwash kids into the ideology of socialism. This is such a far fetched accusation that it's hard to even respond to it. It has basically 0% truth. How do you respond to something like that? Try to have a conversation with a Republican about this and you'll likely give yourself a brain aneurysm. But they refuse to actually invest some time and energy into learning about the program called Common Core and understanding what it really is and whether it's worthwhile or not. In my mind the real value of the program is unclear; it could be great or it could be ineffective, but what it most certainly is not is a brainwashing program.

Another issue is that many of Trump's supporters seem to be enamored with his candor. They all seem to agree that Trump speaks his mind, unencumbered by outside influences and/or money. Well, I'll agree that he is speaking without regard to the feelings of others, but he's often speaking without regard to the truth as well, not to mention the actual limitations of the office of POTUS. No matter how much Trump really wants to deport 12 million people, he can't do that by himself, not to mention he can't do it without spending a whole lot of money. Also not to mention that a whole lot of economists (of all political persuasions) agree that such a move would not be helpful for our economy, let alone our standing in the world. So that's great, we have an insulting blowhard running for President who intends to do things that experts in the field agree is not a good thing for our country. To me, that better fits the definition of someone who wants to destroy his own country than anything else I've heard. How often does a President consult his best military advisers about a situation and after receiving their unanimous advice, choose to do exactly the opposite? This appears to be Trump's approach to just about everything.
Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.
~Bertrand Russell

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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby Keep The Reason » Sun Mar 06, 2016 4:17 pm

Sponge, I cannot agree more that so much of it is an entrenched refusal to do even cursory research into reality, and make even remotely thought out conclusions. Here's more of the commentary.

Regarding my listing of years considerably worse than the Obama administrations 8 years, he replied:

Him:
George, you know that is not what I mean! During the years, those administrators of America, had and I mean Democrats also, had integrity, could be trusted not to lie, of course some were failures but most could be trusted and fulfilled their duties as their offices demanded. But for the last 8 years we have experienced mistrust, lavish personal spending, executive orders, more people on welfare a disregard of our Constitution which has stood for 220 years, let's face it , Washington is broken! Ultimately I believe that God will have who he wants in the presidential office and it is not up to me! I know you will not agree with me, but that is my opinion!


Me:

I can only go by what you say. You said the last 8 years were the worst since the revolution, and it's not anything near that.

I don't remember you complaining about Bush's executive orders. He had 291. Obama has 231.

Look, let's just call it for what it is. You buy into all the Fox News nonsense that gets spewed.. You think he's a Muslim. You think he never says "God bless America ", you think he's the antichrist and so on.

You don't seem to care that he's presided over 70 months of job growth. You seem to think he rose welfare when it was reduced. Unemployment under Bush? 7.8. Under Obama? 5.5.

Not only is he well within the Constitution, he even has the Scotus supporting him that he is within the Constitution. Meanwhile, Bush implemented the Patriot Act which dismantled the 4th amendment and he did it with the cheers of the Republicans.

Trump says outright that he's going to deport American citizens, totally unconstitutional, but that you aren't worried about. The men who have torn up the Constitution you ignore and will even vote for, and the guy who obeys it you decry. Thank you Fox News.

Is Washington broken? Yeah because it's bought by lobbyists. Who are those lobbyists? People like Trump! So you're okay with this plan to fix it by putting the same sort of person in the white house, except one that has zero integrity and is likely to start major wars around the globe. . Great plan.

None of this matters for some reason. Actual facts don't matter. Only "opinion" matters.

The thing that is most surprising is how you can say anything about integrity when you would support Trump. I do not think there's anyone with less integrity.

Delete those lists of his horrible characteristics all you wish, claim that he's you're least wanted choice all you want, you're still winding up supporting a guy who endorses violence at his rallies, wants to date his daughter, endorses war crimes, who likes the Russian dictator Putin, who trades up wives every 10 years, who is engaged in a fraud case... The list never ends the outrages from this man.

But... he has "positives" you like, and it's the Democrats lacking in integrity.

It's simply amazing.


Him:
Obviously, George, we live in two different worlds! End of story!


And that's the thing. I do live in a different world, one where facts matter. This is precisely what I speak of here how religious views lessen the demonstrable aspects of knowledge, and this approach, lauded by many here, influences how one approaches their religion and carrying it across how they view everything else.

And make no mistake. Not only are there millions if not billions of people like this, they mainly run everything. I think we've been wildly lucky so far that we havent blown ourselves up completely.

Annnnnd... He deleted the thread, lol.
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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby spongebob » Sun Mar 06, 2016 6:39 pm

To be fair, the unemployment rate under Bush was around 6.0 most of his time and was well below 5.0 until his last year, when the economy blew up because of the sub-prime scandal. Not that his policies had much to do with it, though. Even though economic output grew under Bush, wages continued to stagnate and the UE rate stayed more or less steady. He made several attempts to ignite the economy into overdrive, but even those were gauged by economists to be fruitless and without merit. He spent money like crazy on two wars without ever raising taxes, vastly contributing to the debt. Few Republicans seem to care about that. This problem has become something like racism, where people of one color blame all the bad things on people of another color. They use fallacious reasoning and outright lies to condemn those other races of outrageous crimes and characteristics without a shred of evidence. This is what politics has become. They also have this ridiculously candy-coated memory of history. Almost all of our Presidential races have been contentious, some in cruel and disgusting ways. Somehow they forget this and pretend that once upon a time all presidents were jolly old fellows who always told the truth and never ran their hand up their secretary's skirt. That's utter bullshit! It doesn't even take much effort to dispel these sad lies. The truth is barely below the water line; just read a history book once in a while. All of this historical glorification of our founding fathers is absolute shit. Several of those guys were just short of Napoleon in the way they approached the business of politics. (oh, bad pun there).

All of those things you listed about Obama and lots more are absolutely true. He has a pretty strong legacy for someone who presided over an obstructionist congress. Republicans can barely come up with real things to criticize him for. Yeah, he forced through a reform law on health insurance; they hate that. Guess what, it's helped millions of people and the country and the health care system didn't implode. He hasn't thrown the entire force of our military at ISIS. Guess what, neither did Regan when our base in Lebanon was bombed. He tucked his tail between his legs in Lebanon and just got out. Bush 41 kicked Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait, but didn't pursue him into Iraq for obvious reasons now. Somehow these were intelligent decisions when it was a Republican, but when a Democrat shows military restraint it's interpreted as weakness and a failure to lead. These are the gripes of foolish, ignorant morons who know more about Spongebob Squarepants than they do world politics. And yet somehow they feel qualified to critique inexorably complex military affairs.

Oh, and Obama killed Bin Laden. What do we hear from the Republicans on that? ...silence. What more do I need to say? Bottom line is that Obama or Bernie or Hillary could cure cancer, send a dozen Americans to Mars and back, solve world hunger, end domestic violence and invent a zero calorie substitute for chocolate cake that blows you mind and what credit would they give him/her? Absolutely none. End of fucking story.
Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.
~Bertrand Russell

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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby Stacie Cook » Sun Mar 06, 2016 6:44 pm

I'd say that is a pretty fair summation.
If you want to meet God... then the cross is the place to which you go. - Alistair Begg
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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby spongebob » Sun Mar 06, 2016 6:48 pm

Stacie Cook wrote:I'd say that is a pretty fair summation.


The sky is quaking. A Christian actually agrees with me?
Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.
~Bertrand Russell

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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby Stacie Cook » Mon Mar 07, 2016 9:05 am

Oops. Someone left the lock on my contained box open and I got out......
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Re: Why I moved 3,000 miles away...

Postby Tim-the-Hermit » Thu Mar 10, 2016 3:34 pm

Right-wing propaganda works a lot better than we fear. I hope that Corbyn and Sanders pull it off while they still can.
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