What is wrong with this world...

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by cosmictotem, Nov 21, 2014.

  1. river Valued Senior Member

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    9,206
    Whats wrong with this world is that majority of Human population on this planet , that can , do not find knowledge and thinking important

    I'm referring to

    The general population has no interest in either , or am I wrong ? No not really
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2015
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  3. danshawen Valued Senior Member

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    Even though I spent part of New Years Day with friends watching the hockey game on HDTV, I paused to reflect on why it should be important to anyone whether or not a plastic hockey puck makes it into a net, or that an oblate spheroid or a neoprene soccer ball should make it over a line, much less care about who or how they did it, since the history of sports like these? There's no answer that makes any real sense to anyone other than Don Rickles (comedic master of the term 'hockey puck'). If we could solve the world's problems by activities like these, they would have all been worked out long ago. It just seems like a gargantuan waste of the food we consume and the energy we expend.

    Let's pay Kim Jong Un the money that other fans of Dennis Rodman have wasted on such stuff to improve the lives of the folks trapped in North Korea's gulags, and by that we do not mean putting them to work to produce more nuclear weapons. Think about that whilst we indulge in the New Year sport fan frenzy for a change. Evidently, a couple of dozen season basketball tickets sent to Kim might actually help. I've no idea why.

    If only governments could be "gamed" like that. It probably would solve a lot of the problems we currently have with voter turnout in what is supposed to be happening in our own democracy. Gerrymandering is not the answer. A game, yes, but not an answer. Maybe games really are part of the problem.
     
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  5. Enoc Registered Senior Member

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    There are many things which are wrong with this world.

    Some of these things are:

    1. Companies that work their employees to the death in order to make as much money as possible.
    2. The abuse and exploitation of animals in zoos and livestock farming.
    3. Greedy politicians that accept bribes to lobby for policies that serve the corporations not the people.
    4. Corporations that go into countries without fair labor practices
    5. People who support these corporations by buying their products
    6. CEOs who make millions of dollar off the backs of workers making minimum wage.
    7. The questionable practices of universities that HIDE default rates and charge ridiculous fees for tuition.
    8. The unfair treatment of tenure candidates by universities.
    http://content.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,2080601,00.html
    9. Governments that bail out the banks and auto industry yet people are forced to live on the streets after their houses were foreclosed.
    10. Corporations that make money off selling books or CDs that are discriminatory and making these items available to the public(Amazon, Chapters, iTunes)

    People need to wake up. People complain about unethical practices but are still lining up to buy items that SUPPORT those unethical practices.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
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  7. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    The biggest problem in this world are the impact of corrupt governments. Government is where the power, military force and laws lies, with power often being used for selfish purposes. Nearly all the poor third and fourth world countries have governments where the leadership lives like a kings and queens, while the people have little. When the USA gives poor countries funding much of this is commandeered by governments. Liberals are conditioned, by their own leadership, to blame this on big business, but no big business can operate in these poor countries without paying kickbacks to corrupt officials throughout government.

    As you enter first and second world countries, there are more checks and balances with respect to government because business and the citizens have more say. They can fund political candidates and vote. But it still takes the government to set up special considerations, such as tax deductions, that allow some businesses not to pay taxes. Businesses don't get to cheat, unless the government sets this up. This is done in exchange for kickbacks called campaign contributions. Even carbon credits were going to be set up as a kickback scheme.

    If you look at the green energy industries, tax payer money was money laundered to these industries, in exchange for money stream sent back to political candidates. The main beneficiaries were government officials who got donations and the businessmen who skimmed off the top, before various green businesses went bankrupt and/or sent operations overseas. Democrat candidates worked that money launder scam. The republicans had their own with honor among the thieves.

    The income tax laws in America are very complicated and convoluted because this is how politicians game the system to money launder for campaign donations. If you give a new deduction to a business, like green energy or big oil, those companies are obliged to pay tributes. This is hidden from sight if the business pay in advance.

    Only government has the power to can create such a scam, leading to pressure on the middle and lower classes who pay the tab, with little in return. The smoke screen that government creates is for one side to blame government and the other side to blame business, to divide the civilians, so nobody see the alliance of kickbacks that is common to both parties. If this is legal than it is not defined as corrupt; legal technically.

    The citizens need to unite against the money laundering scams within both parties. This has gotten worse where money is now borrowed to fund the money laundering and kickbacks. One step in the right direction was hinted by Mitt Romney. He said we needed to eliminate most deductions, since these account for 99% of the 70,000 page tax law. These deductions are the archives of money laundering for kickbacks. I would keep the deductions given to the middle class since they are way behind in the balance of things. With that tap shut, you institute a tax rate that generates the same revenue. This does not end corruption but it is a start until new scam appears.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2015
  8. youreyes amorphous ocean Valued Senior Member

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    2,826
    has anyone considered a final possibility that there is absolutely nothing wrong with this world? When I come to think about it fully, everything is balanced to precision, and it is a miracle that the world stays afloat despite all of our emotions and needs.
     
  9. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    22,875
    The biggest problem in the world is corruption. Corruption exists both within and outside of government. Corruption isn’t unique to government. It is always amazing to me to see folks like you blame government for everything they believe to be wrong in this world while ignoring everything else. Our government does have power, but it only has the power we give it. In developed countries businesses and special interests are largely responsible for the “corruption” you see in government. Further, some countries are less corrupt than others. You are over simplifying the corruption problem just as you oversimplify virtually everything. Corruption in some backwoods country isn’t the same as corruption in a country like the United States.

    If you look at transparency and corruption by country, the least corrupt countries are run by those “liberals” you so dearly hate. http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230189

    So yet again your notions and beliefs are just not consistent with known facts.
    Big businesses do operate in those corrupt countries and without paying bribes. For nearly 40 years now, it has been illegal for companies who do business in the US to pay bribes to foreign officials. The law is vigorously enforced. http://www.justice.gov/criminal/fraud/fcpa/
    You are wrong again Wellwisher.
    Government fiscal policy can only be construed as “money laundering” in that la la land in which you and your fellow Republicans live. I suggest you look up the definition of money laundering. In the real world where most of us live, government fiscal policies are not money laundering schemes. The US tax code is complicated. It is complicated because special interests are able to buy the legislation they want. It has nothing to do with liberals or conservatives. Most recently Republican Congressman Yoder from Kansas and his fellow Republicans introduced and passed a bill written by Citibank to allow banks to once again gamble with federally insured deposits – effectively restoring “too big to fail”. http://www.cnn.com/2014/12/16/politics/kevin-yoder-citigroup-elizabeth-warren-wall-street/

    If you want to get serious with the US corruption problem, we need to take money out of our election processes so that voters can make informed and rational decisions in the ballot box. Once elected, we need to ensure that those who represent us do not have conflicted interests. Just as any business wants to ensure its employees do not have interests which conflict with those of the company, we need to make sure that those who represent us in Washington do not have interests which conflict with ours. Unfortunately, today it is too common to find those in Washington and in state houses across the land more beholden to the special interests that fund their leadership PACs, non government retirement, travel perks, and families than they are to those who elected them to office (e.g. Billy Tauzin). That is the corruption problem we face in the US.

    Special interests created our tax code and both Republicans and Democrats were complicit. However some Democrats (e.g. Obama) have wanted to reform our system and lessen the impact of special interest money on our politics, but have had little success. Not a single Republican has advocated for making our political system less corrupt. It would be like a physician refusing to treat patients. Corruption is just too integral to the Republican Party, it is how they fund their party. Instead of trying to take special interest money out of our political system, Republicans are trying to pour it in. Hell, Republican Speaker Boehner passed out lobbyist checks on the House floor. Boehner will continue to pass out lobbyist checks, he just won't do it on the House floor again.

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    http://crooksandliars.com/john-amato/john-boehner-admits-giving-bribes-big-t

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lobbying

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/under-the-influence/

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/07/opinion/lessig-washington-corruption/
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2015
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  10. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    Another way you make government less corrupt is by limiting the size of the government. Smaller government not only means fewer potential crooks, but if government is only allowed spend what it takes in as revenue; balance budget, this prevents scams by requiring higher levels of competence. There is less to skim.

    Incompetence and corruption benefits by deficit spending. People who have too many credits cards, and can create a lot of personal debt, tend to default more often than those who live within their means. The default occurs after they have skimmed from the system; enjoy the boat before their it loose due to debt.

    If the budget is tight, scammers can only skim around the edges. The disfunction in Washington is due to incompetence. The political fighting is a smoke screen to hide incompetence. The illusion of fighting for principles makes it easier to avoid having to do anything that can quantified their incompetence. The democrats prefer the extra debt due to a higher level of incompetence.
     
  11. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    Actually no, there is no correlation between size of government and corruption. The World Bank did study and they found no such correlation. They did however identify cultural issues, the lack of competition, and the lack of a free press as highly correlated with corruption. Small government can be more corrupt than larger governments. Florida is looking to revoke the charter of one of its cities because of unrestrained corruption. A few years ago, the state of Ohio revoked the municipal charter of municipality of New Rome because of rampant corruption.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/373011/most-corrupt-town-america-may-lose-its-charter-josh-encinias

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Rome,_Ohio

    And here is the thing about “small government”, it is great red meat to rally the ideologues. But no one, not one of the ideologues, has been able to define what small government is in any meaningful way. If you cannot define it, how can you manage it or achieve it. I don’t want government larger or more powerful than need be, but the devil is in the details. The issue isn’t the size of government. It is the value created by government. Government creates value as private industry creates value, by delivering goods and services. Government should be efficient and effective in the delivery of goods and services. Yeah, government can be effective and efficient in the delivery of goods and services. Government isn’t always bad and private industry isn’t always good. When you want to construct a building you need to use the right tool for the job and so it is with government.

    Wellwisher, it is painfully obvious you have a very naïve view of corruption and an uninformed and severely misinformed knowledge of macroeconomics. Debt or balanced budgets have nothing to do with corruption. They are Republican memes used to stir up their partisan base. The country has almost always been in debt. It was born with debt. Without debt, there would have been no revolution. There would have been no WWII. We would all be speaking German now and greeting each other with Heil Hitler salutes. There are good macroeconomic reasons for deficit spending and debt.
    Comparing individuals to a state is like comparing hamburger to a rock. They are not the same. Incompetence and corruption benefit more from ignorant, naïve, and gullible folks, folks they can deceive into making foolish decisions.
    Well the budget is tight. Government finances are audited and the results are published. The problem isn’t with skimming. The problem in Washington, as previously pointed out, is with how we elect our officials and the ethics to which they subscribe once in office. Special interest money talks loudly in our capitals. The problem isn’t with government spending; it is with the special interest legislation money buys in Washington (e.g. deregulation of the banking industry, repeal of Glass-Steagall). It is the legislation which restricts trade and competition special interest money buys (e.g. Medicare Part D which requires the government to pay whatever drug companies want to charge for prescription drugs).

    Do you have any basis for your claim that “Democrats prefer the extra debt due to a higher level of incompetence”? No of course you don’t, you never do. In no small part, because it is complete fiction, you need to tell that to “Deficits Don’t Matter Cheney”. “You know, Paul, Reagan proved that deficits don't matter. We won the mid-term elections, this is our due.” Dick Cheney. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/bush-sought-way-to-invade-iraq/
     
  12. krash661 [MK6] transitioning scifi to reality Valued Senior Member

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    2,973
    What is wrong with this world...
    " You are too inquisitive not to want to know. You seem to find no tranquillity in anything. You struggle against the inevitable. You thrive on conflict. You are selfish, yet you value loyalty. You are rash, quick to judge, slow to change. It's amazing you've survived. Be that as it may, as species, we have no common ground. You are too aggressive. Too hostile. Too militant. "
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2015
  13. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    24,690
    I can't say what the threshold between "small government" and "big government" is (however, I may change my mind on that by the end of this post), but I define the size of any government by its number of levels.

    Governments with a large number of members (or employees, or whatever you want to call them) are forced to establish layers of management, just as any other large organization is forced to, from a university to a railroad to a fast food franchise.

    A chain of command is needed by any organization so large that it's impractical for one manager to oversee the entire staff.

    Governments are no exception. But the problem with governments is that they are not required to turn a profit: they can simply increase taxes to pay for their mistakes, inefficiencies, and just plain unnecessary projects.

    That said, I suppose I would call a government "small" if almost all of its employees are experts in their fields, with only the bottom rung of the pyramid staffed by clerks, secretaries, etc. Once a government grows larger than that, the people at the top tend to be career politicians. Rather than having skills in the kind of work their particular organizational unit performs, they are more likely to have only two job-related attributes:

    1. They love power.
    2. They know how to acquire it, either by winning elections or by ingratiating themselves to their superiors, who are the election winners.

    This is why small towns are often run more efficiently than big cities, or larger political units like counties, states and countries. (But of course corruption is not unknown in small towns either.)
    Hitler did not have the resources to mount an existential attack on the United States. His U-boats were capable of reaching our shores, but his battleships and aircraft would have had a very hard time. Besides, at that time the majority of the American population were racists just like the Germans (most Americans were happy with the segregation of black people, and only slightly more sanguine about the Jews), so he had no ideological quarrel with us.

    Japan was another story. Yet, although with fewer resources we probably would not have been able to conquer Japan, the Japanese had no way to conquer the USA either. They might have captured Hawaii, but they didn't have the resources necessary to mount an existential attack on the mainland. Or as one Japanese general put it, "No one can occupy the United States. There is a gun behind every blade of grass.

    Unfortunately that is still true, and those guns kill 30,000 Americans every year.
    Just as there are for families! If you don't borrow the money to get a university degree, you'll probably spend the rest of your life struggling to survive.
    Since I've been old enough to begin understanding politics (around 1958 when I entered my third year of high school), it has been the Republican administrations that were responsible for the major increases in the national debt. Virtually all of the Democratic presidents throttled back the deficit spending, and quite a few of them actually reduced the national debt.

    It is, in fact, a myth that Republican leaders are more responsible with the national treasury. In particular, Reagan and Backward Baby Bush wrought sheer havoc with it!
     
  14. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    22,875
    Governments are not required to return a profit, but that doesn’t mean government is staff by a bunch of idiotic unmotivated couch potatoes. Government employees are motivated by the same things that motivate a private sector employee. Most private sector employees don’t get a slice of the corporation’s profits either. A government employee cares just as much about his paycheck as the private sector employee cares about his paycheck. Additionally, your average government employee cannot raise taxes to pad their nest. Only elected legislative bodies can spend government money and raise taxes, and those elected bodies are accountable to voters every few years at the ballot box.

    The truth is there is waste and inefficiency both inside and outside of government. The private sector has its inefficiencies too. And those inefficiencies can be long lasting. Some private sector companies are more efficient and more effective than others. Some are less efficient and effective than government (e.g. Kansas Medicaid program). http://cjonline.com/news/2014-10-28/former-executive-alleges-misconduct-kansas-medicaid-contractor
    How do you define “expert”? Is a clerk not an expert? Is a secretary not an expert? Your definition is too vague to be of any value.
    The basis for the size of any organization be it private or government begins with the charter or mandate. What are the goods and services it needs to produce and deliver? And it needs to be staffed sufficiently to deliver those good and services. If it needs 1,000 clerks, 100 managers, and 300 technicians, that is what it needs. The size of government needs to sufficient to meet the expectations of those it serves. Frankly, this small government versus large government is meaningless. It’s just political demagoguery.
    Well they aren’t the only ones who love power. Private sector executives love power too and they too know how to acquire it and use it. That is why they are executives.
    I have seen no indication that smaller towns are run more efficiently than larger towns. In fact, quite the opposite, there appears to be economies of scale at work in the public sector as well as the private sector. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economies_of_scale Rand has a paper on it if you want to spend $20.

    As for Hitler, at the time he declared war on the US, he didn’t have the capability to launch a land invasion of the US. But had the US not gone into debt during WWII, the US would not have been able to supply Russia or the United Kingdom under “Lend Lease” nor would it have been able to build a multimillion dollar military necessary to fend off Hitler or Japan. The Soviet Union and the United Kingdom would have fallen and Hitler would have had the time he needed to build a military capable of invading the United States in conjunction with his Japanese allies. The size of the US Army in 1939 was 187,893. The US wasn’t a super power. It was a pipsqueak. Nineteen armies were larger. Compare that military with Germany or Japan of the time. Germany had a 15 million man army during WWII. Japan had a 6 million man army. The point being, without going into debt, the US could never have managed to fend off both Japan and Germany during WWII.
     
  15. theorist-constant12345 Banned Banned

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    2,660
    Science lost it's appeal to most, from the glamour and star like status of history, to a time where glamour and status can be achieved on a day time soap.
    To draw interest there has to be awards, awards that are achievable to gain by any person. I do not refer to an award such has the Nobel Prize, but an award to gain interest, competitions for creativeness, televised events, something to get the younger generations interested in science away from their console games.
    I wonder how many geniuses have just passed us by, wasted away doing something different to using their mind.
     
  16. Jason.Marshall Banned Banned

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    I am considering extending you an invitation to K.I. when it becomes establish maybe you have the skills to be a promoter of the cause to work in the department concerning public relations.
     
  17. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    We have these; diplomas are a good example. Other nice 'awards' are publication of an article by a journal or standards body, or issuance of a patent, or recognition by a professional society. All available to anyone who works for them.
    For the younger generation there are several NASA awards program, the FIRST robotics competition, the Intel Science and Engineering Festival, local science fairs, the Google science fair, the Siemens MST competition etc. There are a lot out there.
     
  18. river Valued Senior Member

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    9,206
    True

    But not much variety
     
  19. cosmictotem Registered Senior Member

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    747
    When I say the "world" I don't mean the world. I mean us.
     
  20. youreyes amorphous ocean Valued Senior Member

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    us? I cant really blame ourselves for the things we do, the people around us, the cities we build, the laws we define to rule us, the wars that we fight, and our own needs. We were placed in this world with no explanation and reason, it is obvious that we must live this life to the fullest and richest way possible. If we make mistakes, who is going to blame us? God? We have to make mistakes, to find out the right path to our own happiness and content with ourselves.
     
  21. cosmictotem Registered Senior Member

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    747
    There are mistakes and there is self-destruction. Destruction is not a mistake. It's an addiction and indulgence. We need to stop competing with each other on all levels.
     
  22. elte Valued Senior Member

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    1,253
    9/11 began me on a slow realization that we need to stop competing against each other. I mean not so much the physical competition involving doing something better than the other guy, rather more the mental competition of feeling it's okay to hurt her or him.

    Even in cases of self-defense which might be okay from a cursory objective examination, people often take offenses that the justification for retaliation for isn't really very supportable. Some people tend to not give the benefit of the doubt a lot of times when they should. Many people don't step into the other person's shoes like they should.
     
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  23. jabbaska Registered Member

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    40
    I am from Portugal and in this country we don't have Football (bunch of sweaty guys beating on each other), but we do have Soccer (bunch of sweaty guys faking injuries for 90 min). It is the same here...small talk for most people in this country almost HAS to be about soccer, and who won, who's gonna win etc...No place for scientific talk...About 30 min of the News on tv are dedicated to SOCCER, 10 min for every other sport and then the "real" news. Our national supposedly generalist channels decided soap operas and ridiculous talk shows are what people want and all the science comes from the cable channels, but even those are being degraded by reality shows and stupidity in general. I'd say Internet is the major cause for this don't you think? Not saying Internet is bad, far from it actually, but maybe the fact you can learn about almost anything on the Internet and books made tv almost obsolete, at least when it comes to information gathering. Problem is, most of the people (lower classes) don't have access to the internet here, or they don't use it to educate themselves, but rather to be social (facebook etc) or to bully other people online. Although I was born and raised a catholic, my mother always told me not to take stuff for granted, and used to tell me "Never stop learning. Never do only one thing. If you're an expert in one thing, master it! If you're not an expert in anything, learn everything!" - rough translation to English.

    You need incentive from your family, friends or peers in general, to search and be interested about other stuff I think. Hard to be and act smart when all your friends are talking about stupid shit all the time. I never suffered from that but I know quite a lot of people that do.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2015
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