Why This Blog?

The aim of this blog is to fit into the blogosphere like the bracingly tart taste of yogurt fits between the boringly bland and the unspeakably vile.

All comments will be answered if their author provides contact info.


I have no sponsoring group(s) or agencies, and I owe no allegiance to any candidate or group.

(C) Copyright 2012 DenRita Enterprises

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Weekend potpourri

Random ideas worth thinking about.

There is an ethical line between persuasion (the use of facts to make a reasoned argument) and coercion (threaten with injury, not necessarily physical).  Persuasion is ethically permissible, coercion is not.

Alinsky developed techniques to prevail, right or wrong, in the political arena. Are all 12 Rules for Radicals persuasion? Or coercion? Or does each exhibit a mix of both? (Alinsky Rules)

For example, he advises followers to personally attack those you disagree with. Are personal attacks on someone to make them (or others) reluctant to speak out against an issue coercion? Is it unethical?

For example, say a commenter argues against including funds for a homeless shelter in the budget. Is it unethical to call him a “stooge” or an “idiot?” Or is it coercion? Or is it just childish and unproductive?

It's worth a thought.

Truth isn't necessary or particularly useful

Alinsky denied the need to use truth to prevail in a political argument. Is arguing an untrue premise persuasion, coercion, or something else? Is it ethical? Is it moral?

Is it moral to argue “junk science” theories about climate change to force governments to send more money to undeveloped nations?

Is it ethical to argue that guns cause crime in spite of predominant evidence to the contrary, so that you can force your neighbors to refrain from hunting?

It's worth thinking about.

Big difference 

Charity, forced at gunpointisn't charity. It’s violation. It’s what makes a rape not just sex and what makes a robbery not just a gift.  So, is taxing productive members of society to support those who are unwilling to support themselves charity or violation?

It's worth a little thought.

Another one-percent group

On source states that ". . .one percent of the population accounts for 30% of all health care expenditures, and half of those people are elderly."

Most of that care is designed to prolong life, regardless of the cost, the pain or the impact on the family. A lot of doctors are uncomfortable with this. Some people want the full treatment, intervention at all costs. Others, including a lot of medically-savvy people like doctors and nurses, don't want futile treatment that only prolongs death.

A healthcare proxy or a living will make a person’s preferences known. Often their wishes are taken into consideration in planning care. Sometimes their wishes are overruled due to fear of lawsuits (relatives are disagreeing), or the physician’s belief system.

It’s worth thinking about – and discussing with one’s family and primary physician, before it’s necessary.

Socially-emotionally retarded commenters 

While we're in kindergarten most of us learn that we are not diminished when the teacher praises another student. We find out that not everyone who earns praise gets it. And we find that not everyone who misses out on their cookies and milk break gets praised for doing without the free cookies.

A few political commenters must have flunked kindergarten.  (Childish premise)

That’s worth thinking about, too.

No comments:

Post a Comment