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636530 Posts in 25450 Topics by 3621 Members - Latest Member: rickyroma August 19, 2018, 11:57:55 PM
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1  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: The What Are You Reading? Thread on: August 17, 2018, 07:40:40 PM
Re-reading The Book Thief and Animal Farm. My job this fall will be to teach social studies units paralleling each novel, a cross-curricular adventure, as it were. I've done this before, but I taught both the novel and the social studies connections/background. I'm nervous about having to coordinate with another teacher. Teachers can be a bit territorial!

Sounds like an interesting idea. Haven't read The Book Thief but read Animal Farm nearly 20 years ago and remember enjoying it a lot. What is your plan for the social studies component?
2  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 05:46:48 PM
To answer B.E. - what one considers to be inappropriate or excessive has no bearing, for me, on reasonable behaviour. At one point, it was widely considered inappropriate to engage in a homosexual act but, in my view, it was a reasonable act. So if people do think that, it certainly wouldn't convince me in any way that the action of "getting blitzed out beyond self-control" is unreasonable.

If your singular definition of reasonable behavior is any action that does not deprive (or potentially deprive) others of their freedom and self-ownership, then it's going to be met with some confusion.

There's an important component you're missing - reasonable behaviour is primarily when one has control over their own decisions.

This is far from my "singular definition" - this is one of the primary tenets of Western philosophy, borne out of the Age of Reason.
3  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 12:50:29 PM
I donít think anyone is putting the blame on her. I also think thereís nothing wrong with having a more nuanced discussion about these things, even being as sensitive as they are.

I agree that I don't think anyone in this discussion is putting the blame on her. I also agree there's nothing wrong with having a nuanced discussion about the topic.
4  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 12:08:38 PM
This is turning into a far bigger issue than it needs to be.

We don't know if this victim was an alcoholic, whether she intended to have a family, etc. What we do know is that she went out one night and got intoxicated to the point where she lost self-control and I maintain that that is not an unreasonable thing to do. We are muddying the waters here by discussing the long-term effects of alcohol use and the effects that being an alcoholic can have on those close to you. Do I think that a life-long alcoholic or smoker can still be acting reasonably - yes, I do, but that is unrelated to this discussion. There is nothing in her actions that suggests bearing responsibility whatsoever because it is unreasonable to suggest that she should have curbed her drinking because she was leaving herself open to an attack from another person.
5  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 11:58:07 AM
CSM, I donít know if reasonable needs to be linked with consequences to others or only oneself. It seems to me that something could rightly be considered unreasonable if the likely consequences outweigh the benefits, even if only to oneself. Smoking is unreasonable...but youíre welcome to do it (so long as youíre not polluting my air). Ditto excessive drinking, Iíd say (said the heavy drinker). Iím not advocating legislation against such behavior, just saying it is properly considered unreasonable.

In my view, if the consequences are that ultimately you have to give up your own free will in order to impose someone else's standard on yourself, then that might be the worst consequence of all - greater, in my view, than any physical damage one could do to oneself.

This does not mean that we should not work to educate others so that they can make informed choices - indeed, we should. But, again, to characterize these decisions as unreasonable seems to me to be missing the point of what it means to be reasonable.
6  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 11:31:10 AM
There is probably a distinction to be made between reasonable and understandable. It is understandable why someone might get drunk: relieve social anxiety, relieve stress, self medicating, or even give oneself permission to behave in a certain way. But it isnít really reasonable, in that the potential or likely (depending on how often and to what degree you do it) consequences by most accounts outweigh the benefits.

I say this as a pretty regular drinker. But ask someone whose liver is failing or who faces serious prison time after multiple DUIs whether the drinking was reasonable.

Well, a DUI is a different issue because there a predictable consequence of your actions is that you might hurt someone else. Again, if the result of your action is to deprive (or potentially deprive) others of their freedom and self-ownership, then you must take responsibility for your actions. If the result of your action is that it allows someone else the possibility to deprive you of your freedom and self-ownership, then you bear no responsibility whatsoever, as you are acting the way a human should be acting.

In the case of someone whose liver is failing, I can't fully say their drinking is unreasonable since that's a case of one's personal choice that is specifically affecting them. And here I'm strictly concerned with physical harm.

To answer B.E. - what one considers to be inappropriate or excessive has no bearing, for me, on reasonable behaviour. At one point, it was widely considered inappropriate to engage in a homosexual act but, in my view, it was a reasonable act. So if people do think that, it certainly wouldn't convince me in any way that the action of "getting blitzed out beyond self-control" is unreasonable.
7  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 09:08:58 AM
For the record, I didn't think it's right to bring excuses to Scott's behavior as to why he did what he did etc.

No, I know - I didn't think you were making excuses for him.
8  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 08:52:21 AM
I figured that when you said repeatedly it's fact, you based it on some scientific researches, to be frank.

So, do you actually say that it's perfectly reasonable & normal to both drink & not drink? Is it right conclusion?

Yes. Human freedom is reasonable, and human freedom means self-ownership. Therefore when someone is using their freedom to carry out any action that doesn't take away another person's same right to freedom, they are engaging reasonably.
9  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 08:38:54 AM
Interesting. Care to bring sources where it's presented as fact?

That's an extraordinarily bizarre request. Would I need sources to suggest that it is a fact that it is perfectly normal and reasonable to not drink?

We don't need to (nor could we) run experiments to decide what is factually reasonable. Rather, we use reason to decide whether something is true or false.
10  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 08:29:38 AM
I didn't say anything about superior lifestyle & deciding what the others live like. Not sure where you read it. Merely gave advice in 1st post. The way you stated point-blank it's normal & reasonable behavior to get intoxicated sounds like you stated it as fact. Which is not. It's your opinion. Some people may disagree with it.

It's not an opinion. It is a fact. And, yes, some people do disagree with facts but, to be honest, I have no patience for that.
11  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 08:20:27 AM
What? It's perfectly reasonable & normal behavior to get intoxicated? Since when? & I very much disagree when you say that for some, it's pleasurable experience to get intoxicated. It's, once again, illusion. But when they get out of it, it leads to bad things. You can't go against this fact. Then, why should people get pleasurable experience? Is living about pleasures? Since when? Plus, there's many nice safe joys to enjoy instead op being tipsy & such.

Neither you nor I get to define what is a pleasurable experience for others nor how they choose to live their lives. Just as no one has the right to come along and denigrate or restrict your tea-totaling, no one has the right to denigrate or restrict people who choose to become extremely intoxicated.

There was a time in my 20s, when I used to take great pleasure in getting together with my buddies, getting extremely intoxicated, and having some laughs.   Nobody did anything foolish or reckless.   Other than some bad hangovers, nobody got hurt.   And we're all still alive and well to tell the tale.  

Of course, now, I just prefer to catch a nice little buzz to relax.   But, I have zero regrets about those times from my 20s.  

Sounds perfectly reasonable and normal to me!  Smiley

Also, I should say that myself I very rarely drink and when I do it's almost never to the point of intoxication. However, I would never think to impose my own lifestyle choices on others. Just as when it irks me when people, say, want to impose their eating habits and workout regimes on others because they believe it to be a superior lifestyle choice. I don't eat beef or pork and I try to work out when I can but I make it a point never to criticize others who are not living the same lifestyle that I am. As far as political systems go, that's another matter...  Cheesy
12  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 08:11:34 AM
What? It's perfectly reasonable & normal behavior to get intoxicated?

Yes.

Quote
Since when?

This has always been the case.

I very much disagree when you say that for some, it's pleasurable experience to get intoxicated. It's, once again, illusion. But when they get out of it, it leads to bad things. You can't go against this fact. Then, why should people get pleasurable experience? Is living about pleasures? Since when? Plus, there's many nice safe joys to enjoy instead op being tipsy & such.

Neither you nor I get to define what is a pleasurable experience for others nor how they choose to live their lives. Just as no one has the right to come along and denigrate or restrict your tea-totaling, no one has the right to denigrate or restrict people who choose to become extremely intoxicated.
13  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Scott Bennett Update: He's Due to Be Released on: August 16, 2018, 07:39:57 AM
Neither one of you 'get' what I'm saying.  He was guilty and found so.  With that I agree 100%.  The fact that she was defenseless did not give him license to do what he did.  It was not an invitation.  It was not a reason for him to violate her.  The fact that she was in THAT condition, though, was HER fault.  She left herself totally vulnerable.  For that she HAS to take some responsibility.  There are,after all, consequences for actions...in REAL time.

I can't say I agree with this element of your discussion, Lee.

The fact is is that, for some, getting blitzed out beyond self-control is a very pleasurable experience. If someone wants that experience, it shouldn't be considered as a "fault". In a decent society, one should be able to get into those particular states of intoxication without the fear that they are going to possibly going to come under physical attack when they are there. It isn't too far from basic civility to operate under the belief that when one is slightly or even fully incapacitated that we don't abuse them, regardless of whether they made the perfectly reasonable choice to become that intoxicated or whether they didn't.

"Ah, but human nature," one might respond. We can't rely on the decency of humans and therefore other people's lack of a moral compass should therefore restrict our own actions. That is, the people who lack basic decency should get to decide for us how we treat our own bodies. Well, even if you put aside the fact that the very premise is obscene, I would also reply that what we call "human nature" is in reality something that is not set in stone. Human behaviour can change. Therefore, surely, if we are going to push for change, it should not be to talk people out of perfectly normal and reasonable behaviour - that is, going out and getting intoxicated beyond self-control - but instead work to convince more and more people that when people are engaging in that perfectly normal and reasonable behaviour that we don't abuse them.
14  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: What are you watching now?/Favourite Movie of the Moment on: August 16, 2018, 06:28:07 AM
I recently went on a inadvisable spending spree and bought about eight movies - some cheap, some expensive. One of the more expensive purchases was Bergman's trilogy - Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence. I had seen the first two before but not the last but I decided to watch all three this week, completing The Silence last night. These are, in my view, monumental movies and Winter Light belongs in my all-time favourite movie list. Maybe The Silence needs to be re-watched or sink in a bit more because I didn't enjoy it as much as the first two. It's still very good though. It's difficult for any film to measure up to both Winter Light and Through a Glass Darkly.
15  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Kokomo Is 30 article in Stereogum on: July 30, 2018, 08:16:55 AM
It's hip to diss it because it's Mike's Beach Boys, and Brian isn't on it. i'm sure all the Brianistas would celebrate the idea of the group having a late career hit if Brian had sung on it - and produced and co-written it.

There are a staggering amount of people who I have met in my life who talk about how terrible this song is and have absolutely no idea who any of the members are. So I'm unconvinced by your assessment.
16  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: David Marks Arrested on: July 29, 2018, 10:09:19 AM
"My biggest regret is that time David Marks was arrested"
17  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / Smiley Smilers Who Make Music / Re: My Beach-Boys-Influenced Demos on: July 29, 2018, 07:12:01 AM
I love the sound. I would say keep them exactly like this other than the final mixing. The harmonies sound great to me.
18  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Mike Nesmith Reveals Quadruple-bypass Surgery - Still Plans to Tour In September on: July 26, 2018, 08:30:34 PM
I saw one of the last - if not the last - Mike & Micky show before the tour was cancelled. I had no idea why until now. Glad to hear he seems to be recovering nicely. He did seem off during the show and, in fact, the stage interaction was awkward. The band sounded great though and I was happy to have seen the show.

Isn't it amazing to read Mike had an oxygen tank setup backstage at those shows like the one you saw? I don't think anyone had a clue outside the inner circle and tour staff, and I know fans around Philly including those who drove pretty far from out of state to attend were shocked when that show was canceled hours before curtain. All I got to see were the various Facebook live streams of a few songs from various tour dates that they were putting up.

Yes, it's quite sad. All things considered, he put on an amazing show.
19  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Mike Nesmith Reveals Quadruple-bypass Surgery - Still Plans to Tour In September on: July 26, 2018, 08:15:57 PM
I saw one of the last - if not the last - Mike & Micky show before the tour was cancelled. I had no idea why until now. Glad to hear he seems to be recovering nicely. He did seem off during the show and, in fact, the stage interaction was awkward. The band sounded great though and I was happy to have seen the show.
20  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: MLB 2018 on: July 25, 2018, 10:05:15 AM
As a Jays fan, I am just thankful to the Orioles for keeping us out of the basement.
21  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Was Back in the USSR the 1st Beach Boys parody? on: July 25, 2018, 04:33:57 AM
So, sure, it's funny in that that's the Beatles take on it but it would be the equivalent of writing a song from the perspective of a man from Holland in the style of Blue Suede Shoes, called Yellow Wooden Clogs.

Only no self-respecting man from Holland would give a sh*t what you did with his yellow wooden clogs. LOL

Ha!
22  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Was Back in the USSR the 1st Beach Boys parody? on: July 24, 2018, 07:35:15 PM
This is semantics, but I always considered the song more pastiche than parody. For me the difference is that pastiche imitates while parody makes fun of. And furthermore, it's a pastiche of not just a style but, in my view, two different songs: Chuck Berry's Back in the USA and The Beach Boys' California Girls.

I kinda respectfully disagree.

Especially since the tune is called "Back in the USSR", which is a deliberate take/pun on the whole US pride type thing, it's (to my ears at least) an intentionally jokey reference to the BB's song Surfin' USA, and some of the lyrical themes of California Girls.

IMO, it's both an homage and also making fun of that Beach Boys aesthetic a little bit (but not in a mean way).  It's not just that the song goes into a Beach Boys style randomly for a bit simply because The Beatles appreciated The BBs' music; it's a very purposeful joke on US vs USSR, national pride, and very much a wink wink, nudge nudge thing, since the BBs always bragged about their girls, and sang about national pride.

Maybe it's a hybrid parody/pastiche, but to me it's a bit like when Get Smart did their Casablanca episode; there's undeniable parody involved.

I hear you but I disagree with your analysis.

For one, it seems to elide the fact that a central source text for the song is Chuck Berry's Back in the USA. Look at the first verse of both songs:

Back in the USSR:

Oh, flew in from Miami Beach B.O.A.C.
Didn't get to bed last night
On the way the paper bag was on my knee
Man I had a dreadful flight
I'm back in the U.S.S.R.

Back in the USA:

Oh well, oh well, I feel so good today
We touched ground on an international runway
Jet propelled back home, from over the seas to the U. S. A.

There's definitely a humour in the song but the target is not The Beach Boys. Rather, McCartney is just taking this rock and roll convention (and to be fair, most of it comes from Chuck Berry here and not The Beach Boys) and considers it from the perspective of "the enemy" in order to show that the Russian man has the same story as the American man and when it comes right down to it, we are all the same. Now a more serious version would simply argue that people have the same values everywhere and the same capacity of making good choices, flawed choices, etc. But The Beatles are a bit more creative than that and from a more musical perspective say, just as an American can write "Back in the USA," a Russian can write "Back in the USSR" and just as an American can write California Girls, a Russian can sing about Moscow girls.

So, sure, it's funny in that that's the Beatles take on it but it would be the equivalent of writing a song from the perspective of a man from Holland in the style of Blue Suede Shoes, called Yellow Wooden Clogs. The target wouldn't be Elvis or Carl Perkins. I mean, I guess it could be, but not if your goal is to show that people all over the world have the same concerns.
23  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Was Back in the USSR the 1st Beach Boys parody? on: July 24, 2018, 06:16:09 AM
This is semantics, but I always considered the song more pastiche than parody. For me the difference is that pastiche imitates while parody makes fun of. And furthermore, it's a pastiche of not just a style but, in my view, two different songs: Chuck Berry's Back in the USA and The Beach Boys' California Girls.
24  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Pet Peeves on: July 17, 2018, 09:30:52 AM
On a totally different note (but relevant to the thread), I really dislike the hyperbole-clickbait style of YouTube video titles, as well as headlines in some publications. For example, I enjoy watching debates on YouTube. But so many of them have titles like "[Person A] CRUSHES libtard [Person B]," or "Conservative DESTROYED IN FIVE MINUTES!" or whatever. Right now in my recommended videos is "Atheist Dan Barker Mutilates The Christian."

It's as if the typical YouTube commenter--which is to say, a hyperbolic idiot--titles them all.

I agree entirely. I think it's a symptom of being treating politics like its a spectator sport. In many ways, we have been highly influenced to think about politics in those terms.
25  Non Smiley Smile Stuff / The Sandbox / Re: Pet Peeves on: June 04, 2018, 05:55:11 PM
Decided to delete post. Just frustrated at how my country is going downhill.

That's too bad. I was about to comment on it.
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