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Thread: The left's circular firing squad.

  1. #36
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    This is not quite 'much ado about nothing'. But it's leaning that way.

    I have a long history as an activist, and I can state with certainty that - because of our values - we have always been more prone to internal wrangling. Sometimes to the point where it becomes a distraction from the primary mission. I saw the same dynamic when us young whippersnappers flooded into the existing anti-war organizations during the Vietnam War. And that's ok. As long as it doesn't totally derail the organization.

    In any system, including organizational development, it helps to remember that there are two ways to look at what you're up to: process and content. Lefties tend to put more emphasis on process issues than those on the right do, and we are concerned about more sorts of process issues than 'efficiency' (the right's main concern). Dealing with those issues takes time, which is a weakness. But it can also be a strength in several ways.

    Since these days I'm not in a leadership position in any or the organizations I work with, save one, I can't say if we've reached the 'derail' point. From my wife's tales of the UUA, there's currently an overabundance of political correctness, pronoun angst, and suchlike. But not to the point of dysfunction. Just one datum.

    So, for now, I'm gonna view this as a time of tumult and transition... and run with one of the quotes in the article --

    Many progressive organizations are being led by women and people of color for the first time. This shift accelerated during the pandemic, largely in response to the murder of George Floyd and other factors, and so these folks assumed leadership during an especially difficult moment for our country, and for their organizations as well, since so many organizations on the left include a focus on race. There have always been differences over strategy — how to do our work, who to engage, etc. — on the left, but the fact that the staff and leadership ranks of many progressive organizations are more diverse means that certain ideas about strategy that once predominated are rapidly being displaced. This, inevitably, has also caused tension, but also creativity.
    Last edited by David G; 06-29-2022 at 02:10 PM.
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  2. #37
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Osborne Russell
    Can one be woke and categorically oppose CRT?
    A query like this one should be prefaced with the questioners definition of "woke" and "CRT".
    ITS CHAOS, BE KIND

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Bow View Post
    A query like this one should be prefaced with the questioners definition of "woke" and "CRT".
    Here you go:
    Woke (/ˈwoʊk/ WOHK) is an English adjective meaning "alert to racial prejudice and discrimination" that originated in African-American Vernacular English (AAVE). Beginning in the 2010s, it came to encompass a broader awareness of social inequalities such as sexism, and has also been used as shorthand for American Left ideas involving identity politics and social justice, such as the notion of white privilege and slavery reparations for African Americans.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woke

    Critical race theory (CRT) is a cross-disciplinary intellectual and social movement of civil-rights scholars and activists who seek to examine the intersection of race, society, and law in the United States and to challenge mainstream American liberal approaches to racial justice. The word critical in its name is an academic term that refers to critical thinking, critical theory, and scholarly criticism, rather than criticizing or blaming people.[1][2] CRT is also used in sociology to explain social, political, and legal structures and power distribution through the lens of race.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_race_theory

    So to answer OR, No. They should go hand in glove.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  4. #39
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    You people are hilarious.

    The article is about how

    disputes over diversity, equity and inclusion — over doctrine, language and strategies — have paralyzed much of the left advocacy and nonprofit sector.
    and the woke* contingent of the Bilge immediately makes 40 posts bickering about the language one of the article's interviewees used, this proving the original point.

    * I use the word here strictly according to PM's approved definition, without any prejudice. And for all you know so did Stephen Pinker.

  5. #40
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by George. View Post
    You people are hilarious.

    The article is about how

    disputes over diversity, equity and inclusion — over doctrine, language and strategies — have paralyzed much of the left advocacy and nonprofit sector.

    and the woke* contingent of the Bilge immediately makes 40 posts bickering about the language one of the article's interviewees used, this proving the original point.

    * I use the word here strictly according to PM's approved definition, without any prejudice. And for all you know so did Stephen Pinker.
    My disagreement is with the characterization of 'paralyzed'. It amounts to a serious bit of 'pearl-clutching', both from what I know historically, and from what I see in my personal dealings.
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  6. #41
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    I'll give an example: several foundations that fund nature conservation have lately included gender-based criteria. Applicants need to show how many women will be employed by the project, how many women will benefit, etc., etc. The gender-equity section of the application forms is nearly as long as the substance section.

    Now if I were just self-interested I would love that. In our organization, every management and senior position since we were founded has been held by women. This gives us a clear advantage in applying for such a grant. But the criterion is BS. It means that another small NGO which happens to have less women on staff becomes ineligible. With small organizations, the gender and race distribution of your staff will vary randomly. It's not like having 100 managers and only 20 are women.

    One of these foundations was keen on funding a fisheries project we were conducting. But all the fishermen on this river (excuse me, fishers) are men. So the beneficiaries - the local community we would work with, and that would benefit from better fishing - were 100% men. We told them this, and they said no problem - just count the wives and daughters all those fishermen surely support.

    That, to me, is when it becomes farce.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    disputes over diversity, equity and inclusion — over doctrine, language and strategies — have paralyzed much of the left advocacy and nonprofit sector.
    Let's say 'caused problems' rather than 'paralyzed' and I think it would be more accurate (if vaguer).

    And then we demonstrate exactly how it's done.
    "For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations,
    for nature cannot be fooled."

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  8. #43
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by George. View Post
    ...without any prejudice. And for all you know so did Stephen Pinker.
    go pull the other one.

    there is no reason to use the word "woke" in this context. "the left" will do just fine.

    the "woke left" is a pejorative, and an obvious prejudice.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    I dunno, Keith. With people like LW, 'paralyzed' is spot on. He read the word 'woke' and now can't get past it.

  10. #45
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Still, it is amusing. For example:

    Baxter is alert to racial prejudice and discrimination.

    "Woke" is defined without prejudice as "someone who is alert to racial prejudice and discrimination".

    Therefore, Baxter is woke.

    Right, Baxter?

    You too, PM. I see you hiding your head in the sand there.

  11. #46
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by CWSmith View Post
    Sadly, the left is far worse than disorganized and they really do turn on their own rather than build alliances with people who are just a half step away from them..
    You mean the left should be like the Reich and issue death threats to members of their own side who deviate - as in Ohio's Amy Acton and Tony Gonzalez and "shoot the RINO's" Greitens ??

    And of course they openly threaten us lefties as well.

    The left is not like that at all, and I do not want them to be.

  12. #47
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    "Woke" is very similar to the Spanish "concientizacion" - the process of becoming aware of injustice, and doing something about it.

    Nothing at all wrong with that.

    In fact, you cannot be a real leftie if you lack that awareness.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by George. View Post
    I dunno, Keith. With people like LW, 'paralyzed' is spot on. He read the word 'woke' and now can't get past it.
    He'll get over it.
    "For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations,
    for nature cannot be fooled."

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by bobbys View Post
    . No lib here will admit to being woke.. .
    More of you fractal wrongness.

    I joyfully admit to being "woke" - and aspire to become more woke every day.

    You really have no idea about how the world works.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by CWSmith View Post
    Sadly, the left is far worse than disorganized and they really do turn on their own rather than build alliances with people who are just a half step away from them.
    Quote Originally Posted by sandtown View Post
    You mean the left should be like the Reich and issue death threats to members of their own side who deviate - as in Ohio's Amy Acton and Tony Gonzalez and "shoot the RINO's" Greitens ??
    I said the exact opposite of this. How can that not be clear?
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by George. View Post
    Tom, the article is about staff at progressive institutions arguing about language and stuff and going at each other instead of pursuing their institutional mission. Try reading it.
    Sounds like the last 26 (?) Climate conferences.
    I would rather have questions that can't be answered than answers that can't be questioned


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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by sandtown View Post
    More of you fractal wrongness.

    I joyfully admit to being "woke" - and aspire to become more woke every day.

    You really have no idea about how the world works.
    The more you watch Fox, and other disinformation sources, the more ignorant you become.
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Some in the circular firing squad even came with high capacity magazines.
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob winter View Post
    I'm not even sure you guys have a left wing. The DNC certainly isn't it.
    There is no political 'left' in America, only centre-right, right, and far right. A few academics arguing abour what a word means are not any sort of left.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Bow View Post
    A query like this one should be prefaced with the questioners definition of "woke" and "CRT".
    Do you consider yourself woke? An adherent of critical race theory? Use any definitions you like.
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by skuthorp View Post
    There is no political 'left' in America, only centre-right, right, and far right. A few academics arguing abour what a word means are not any sort of left.
    If so, "left" is not a useful descriptor. How about woke vs. liberal?
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by George. View Post
    Still, it is amusing. For example:

    Baxter is alert to racial prejudice and discrimination.

    "Woke" is defined without prejudice as "someone who is alert to racial prejudice and discrimination".

    Therefore, Baxter is woke.

    Right, Baxter?

    You too, PM. I see you hiding your head in the sand there.
    What further step would a woke person have to take to be a critical race theorist?
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Wilson View Post
    Let's say 'caused problems' rather than 'paralyzed' and I think it would be more accurate (if vaguer).

    And then we demonstrate exactly how it's done.
    It's a mode of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

    It brought a Republican Governor to to Virginia, for openers. It required the recall of the San Francisco School Board. If -- for purposes of argument -- it did not elect the Trumpins the first time, it will certainly elect him the second.

    Rename Abraham Lincoln High School, GFY. These things didn't occur in academe.
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    "woke" means whatever it means, in usage.
    Can you say the same of Communism or Fascism? If usage is not ultimately the moral judgment of the users of language, what is it? She it, I sound like a modernist. Usage is a battleground. That's what we're doing. What shall be the usage?

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    my understanding is that the term did generate rather spontaneously, where so much of modern english invention occurs, as african american street slang. signifying someone who demonstrates awareness, and speaks the language of, social justice issues.
    If so, would it include Thoreau, Lincoln and John Muir? If not, why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    applying "wokeness" specifically to the extremes of social justice scholarship and philosophy does not even begin to cover the popular range of the term.

    P on the rabble. What was the popular range of the term "communism" in the Soviet empire?

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    as for what came first--or who influenced who--the "woke" of a social-justice culture carrying forward the inheritance of the civil rights movement, or the "woke" of extreme academics and activists, well....was rosa parks a student of malcolm x?
    Ms. Parks' contribution occurred before wokers were born. Mr. X's contributions, further before. If "woke" is nothing new, what justifies the usage?

    I'll tell you the justifications given: age discrimination. The vanity of the young. The anxiety of influence.
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    did you see how bobbys used the term "woke", right here on this thread, osborne?

    did you see george dot intimate in the o.p. that resistance to his offensive, speculative, faux-scientific bullfarb is down to, not the simple fact of it being speculative, offensive, faux-scientific bullfarb, but "the woke left" that, one surmises, "can't handle the 'truth'"?

    that's the usage, here on this thread.

    if you want to elevate "woke" ideology to the level of "communism" or "fascism", you will need to inflict some discipline on the morons and self serving wankers which abound.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by CWSmith View Post
    They are amazing how locked they really are. As soon as an idea gets introduced, they are all talking the same points. Is it discipline, or the desire for approval? Either way, it is clear that independent thinking was tossed out a long time ago.

    Sadly, the left is far worse than disorganized and they really do turn on their own rather than build alliances with people who are just a half step away from them.

    The right show no restraint when dealing with the opposition, but the left is unrestrained when dealing with minor disagreements within their own ranks.
    Right or left, it's Puritanism. Puritanism is tribalism, elaborately rationalized. Right or left, liberalism stands in the way. The opposition, right or left, is anti-liberal. That ain't no half-step. That's the ball game.

    Liberalism is what says, the conflict can be contained -- here's a suggested structure for containing it. Tweak it as you like so long as you cleave to the purpose. Why would one expect the extremes not to denounce it? If they denounce it, how can one avoid the conclusion that they are not ipso facto anti-liberal?

    The question is, what is your understanding of the purpose of liberalism? Is it something worth fighting for?
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    did you see how bobbys used the term "woke", right here on this thread, osborne?

    did you see george dot intimate in the o.p. that resistance to his offensive, speculative, faux-scientific bullfarb is down to, not the simple fact of it being speculative, offensive, faux-scientific bullfarb, but "the woke left" that, one surmises, "can't handle the 'truth'"?

    that's the usage, here on this thread.

    if you want to elevate "woke" ideology to the level of "communism" or "fascism", you will need to inflict some discipline on the morons and self serving wankers which abound.
    I don't know if I understand. I will say, I oppose the use of "woke" as a mere epithet. I've said that before.

    When Reds say "woke" it's a mere epithet. Like you trained a parrot to say it. When I say it, I mean left anti-liberalism, the residue of Marxism. I doubt that's what Bobby means, and I don't know if that's what George means.
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    bobbys is wrong—because I no longer consider myself a centrist. I used to think of myself that way. Not any more.


    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    How to amend the constitution.

    1. Form alliances with people who hold different beliefs.
    2. Amend constitution.

    Progress to date. None.

    It can be tough to form alliances with people who disagree with us, but it does happen. It just doesn’t happen enough. One of my peeves with Congress is that they don’t get enough done even when there is broad agreement on something, and sadly, this happens more than it used to happen, because the party leaders who are out of power don’t want to give the opposing side any kind of victory, even when the legislation is what is best for the country.

    I think progressives and center-left Democrats share a lot of common ground, and hopefully they will temper the vitriol and work together as much as possible, especially now, as the current Republican Party is completely nuts in thought and deed, and the leadership of that party seldom acts in good faith. They are the biggest barrier to progress, followed closely by our two disingenuous senators from Arizona and West Virginia.

    Jeff C
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  29. #64
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Osborne Russell View Post
    When I say it, I mean left anti-liberalism, the residue of Marxism.
    Sorry, but it’s pretty hard to take you seriously when you write (and apparently believe) this nonsense…

    The “residue of Marxism” in progressive politics in America is roughly equivalent to the leftover residue of caramel nougat left in a 35 year old candy wrapper. It’s laughable, especially when compared to the overwhelming authoritarianism and fascism of the extreme right (particularly in today’s GOP where the “extreme right” includes 95% of the party).

    Jeff C
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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Osborne Russell View Post
    I don't know if I understand. I will say, I oppose the use of "woke" as a mere epithet. I've said that before.

    When Reds say "woke" it's a mere epithet. Like you trained a parrot to say it. When I say it, I mean left anti-liberalism, the residue of Marxism. I doubt that's what Bobby means, and I don't know if that's what George means.
    yes, as i alluded in post #8. you are disciplined and therefore coherent in your use of the term, and within your parameters i agree with your opposition to "woke" political philosophy. yes, it is anti-liberal.

    but i think you do a disservice to your argument using the term "woke" or "wokers" to describe serious critical race theorists and hard left activism. because you walk in using the same word bobbys uses. and george dot, and even stephen pinker. none of them are describing what you are describing.

    critique-ing the "woke left" by focusing on the practical details of crt, you might as well ascribe malcolm x philosophy to rosa parks. because that is the range of people and thoughts and motives we are talking about, in popular discourse.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by CWSmith View Post
    I said the exact opposite of this. How can that not be clear?
    Respectfully sir, your post, to which you refer, was not in the least clear . .

    You also wrote this . . "The right show no restraint when dealing with the opposition, but the left is unrestrained when dealing with minor disagreements within their own ranks."

    Is there a head scratching emoji ??

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    did you see how bobbys used the term "woke", right here on this thread, osborne?

    that's the usage, here on this thread. .
    Just like the word "liberal", the Reich has re-defined "woke" to be something bad.

    I refuse to let them drive the vernacular.

    Why cannot we just stick to the dictionary definition ???

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Politically the right needs a 'left' to demonise, the further right the further left they need. Hence the ressurection of Marxism as a bogey man.
    Without an invented 'left' to be the other the right has nothing much to sell.

    As I have said before, the SC has turned over a few rocks on the forum and we can now see what lives underneath.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Osborne Russell View Post
    I don't know if I understand. I will say, I oppose the use of "woke" as a mere epithet. I've said that before.

    When Reds say "woke" it's a mere epithet. Like you trained a parrot to say it. When I say it, I mean left anti-liberalism, the residue of Marxism. I doubt that's what Bobby means, and I don't know if that's what George means.
    That's exactly what I mean, perhaps with less emphasis on the residue of Marxism.

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    within your parameters i agree with your opposition to "woke" political philosophy. yes, it is anti-liberal.
    Thank you, LW. That's exactly why I critique it. I was woke (by PM's definition) long before the term was coined. But when being woke conflicts with my liberal principles, I draw the line.

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    Default Re: The left's circular firing squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Osborne Russell View Post
    When Reds say "woke" it's a mere epithet. .
    No, it is not an epithet to the lefties. It is a compliment.

    Show me one single instance of a leftie using it as an epithet. There is no such critter.

    Your sentence gets the Fractal Wrongness award of the day.

    (The Bobster was yesterday's winner)

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