It has been another all-star Battle of the super heroes here this week. Ryan, who teaches us lessons in logic at Secular Ethics, has been demonstrating examples of reasoning as he bravely takes on uber-conservative T. Paine. T. Paine more usually can be found at Saving Common Sense. T. Paine visits, not so much to praise Romney, but to bury Obama over outsourcing and economic policy. The deliberative brawl shifts to a Ryan analysis of whether T. Paine's issue of "palling around with radicals" degenerates to guilt by association.
The Heathen Republican argues that an administration official who contemplates the problem of growing income inequality is an advocate of guaranteed equal outcomes. The temptation in making any rhetorical case is to overlook nuance. If accelerating concentration of wealth is troublesome to you, you must be one of them thar socialists. Go along now, pal around with your little radical friends.
Nancy Hanks at The Hankster speculates on whether President Obama has a problem with independents and figures out what happened to third way alternative Americans Elect.
James Wigderson gets the run-around from a hostile public official who tries to charge him for information he has a right to. He refers the matter to a district attorney who drops the ball. The point of all this is that James has to explain to readers what he had meant when he called the DA a gelding. The state of education today.
News Corpse takes a look at the Fox Spanish language site aimed at Latinos. Seems the anti-immigrant slant on the English side of Fox News is strangely absent in the Spanish translation. Now, how did that happen?
Okay. Everyone this side of the ground knows that CNN and FoxNews blew it in covering the SCOTUS decision on health care. Tommy Christopher of Mediaite fame has the hilarious story behind the story of those who got it right. Goes to other stories on a shoestring, complete with near incineration. Today's accurate news brought to you by Crispy Critters.
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While I think this conservative invention preceded Summers, I appreciate the try.
The idea that all people should be paid equal wages and have identical standards of living is not a liberal idea; nor is it supported by any party.
Mr. Heathen desperately grasps for someone he thinks lives on the left who believes this conservative invention so he can argue that the conservative-created concept is a tenet of liberalism.
I would think one would instead try to prove his philosophy, which is more powerful than inventing a philosophy as a tenet of the left and then trying to refute your invention.
He has devoted tons of time trying to disprove the idea that everyone should have identical standards of living, be paid identically, and rewarded identically, regardless of effort, motivation and skill on the part of the individual.
He has been pretty successful arguing this, so it was time well spent. I am not sure why it took him so long, though; especially since he had tremendous trouble finding anyone who disagrees.
While the Left may use this term, it does not actually oppose inequality of income in general. I do not hear anyone arguing that cashiers at Target should make as much money as doctors do. Instead, the Left opposes what it perceives to be unfair inequality of income and sometimes excessive wage gaps. We have discussed this issue before on his blog.
HR is free to dispute the Left's perceptions. He might claim, for example, that it is too inclined to see sexism or racism at work, so it misinterprets inequality. However, it is dishonest of him to portray the Left's position so simplistically and to claim, as he recently did in the comments section of his recent post, that "the left understands 'equality of outcome' and simply refuses to acknowledge it openly because they know how ridiculous it is."
It is a wonder to me that HR has any respect for us liberals when he has such a perception of our positions.
All I can do is take the words and actions of those on the left and try to make sense of their ideology and where we differ. There is plenty of evidence that the left believes in equality only as much as it yields equal outcomes. There is just as much evidence that the left denies believing in equal outcomes as a policy. Should I believe their words and actions, or their denials?
That is an outright lie. You frequently pretend to know the Left's desires and beliefs. In fact, you JUST wrote that "the left understands 'equality of outcome' and simply refuses to acknowledge it openly because they know how ridiculous it is."
"Should I believe their words and actions, or their denials? "
What do you make of the fact that the Left does not support equal wages for everyone? If the Left supports actual income equality, why does it not call for everyone to make the same wage? You are only considering some--not all--of the Left's actions as a way to make your point.
If you do not see discrimination, then you should dispute the Left's perceptions. If the Left does not accept your arguments, then you may, according to your beliefs, accuse it of being unreasonable. However, it is obvious that the Left does not really believe in income equality.
"That is an outright lie. You frequently pretend to know the Left's desires and beliefs. In fact, you JUST wrote that "the left understands 'equality of outcome' and simply refuses to acknowledge it openly because they know how ridiculous it is.""
Not a lie at all. I do NOT pretend to know what the left believes; all I can do is try to interpret their words and deeds. I admit openly that I can never know the motives or beliefs of another person because those are internal.
Larry Summers acknowledges the left's obsession with equal outcomes. Bloggers like John Myste deny that they believe in equal outcomes because they know it is indefensible. What you call a lie I call backed up by words and deeds.
"You are only considering some--not all--of the Left's actions as a way to make your point."
You're the logical one here, so you should know better than this. OF COURSE I am only considering some of the left's actions. It would be impossible to account for ALL of the left's actions, let alone define who represents the left.
Our world of opining and philosophizing involves making generalizations backed up by examples. If we are forced to consider ALL of the left's actions before offering an opinion about the left, no opinions could ever be offered.
The Left might perceive discrimination in certain manifestations of inequality, such as wage differences between men and women or between whites and blacks.
"I do NOT pretend to know what the left believes; all I can do is try to interpret their words and deeds."
Here are your own words again:
"...the left understands 'equality of outcome' and simply refuses to acknowledge it openly because they know how ridiculous it is."
It certainly sounds like you think that you know what the Left believes. There is nothing wrong with that unless you're wrong.
"Larry Summers acknowledges the left's obsession with equal outcomes."
Larry Summers acknowledges that the Left is concerned with inequality, that there is only so much that can be done responsibly to address the gap between the wealthy and the poor (or middle class), and that focusing only on such inequality will not necessarily resolve the problem. This is not the same as acknowledging "the left's obsession with equal outcomes."
"It would be impossible to account for ALL of the left's actions, let alone define who represents the left."
This is not about accounting for every single belief. I presented a very common liberal (and conservative) belief that challenges your accusation: doctors and cashiers should not have the same income. If your claim that liberals desire to see income equality were true, this belief would not be so prevalent among them.
I am willing to agree that the Left is inclined to see discrimination where it does not exist. Without such an inclination, however, the Left would not necessarily call inequality unfair, so I cannot join you in accusing the Left of desiring income equality.
I realize that the language I use makes it sound like I know what the left believes, but I don't. I can only interpret from actions what the left believes.
"This is not about accounting for every single belief. I presented a very common liberal (and conservative) belief that challenges your accusation: doctors and cashiers should not have the same income. If your claim that liberals desire to see income equality were true, this belief would not be so prevalent among them."
I don't think this challenges the accusation at all. First, my topic was not specific to "income inequality;" I'm talking about "equality of outcome." Second, income inequality is generally compared within a profession and not across a profession.
The left gets outraged when female doctors make less than male doctors even though there are reasons related to time in the workforce, hours worked, etc. I've never seen anyone express outrage that a cashier makes less than a doctor.
My point about the left is that we can have official policies that prevent any kind of gender discrimination among doctors. We can have administrators follow every law on the books and have zero personal bias against women. But if women make less than men, the left assumes some kind of gender inequality.
In other words, all the policy is equal on its face, yet the outcome demonstrates a difference between men and women. Only the left assumes this is an inequality because the OUTCOME was unequal.
Overall, I think we agree, based on your last comment. If you've been arguing "income equality" instead of "equal outcomes" all this time, perhaps we agreed all along.
OK, we agree. I would only add that this is just part of the reason.
The Left does not react this way to all income inequality among different groups within the same profession. If we found that blue-eyed mechanics tend to make more money than green-eyed mechanics, most liberals would not jump to the conclusion that there is discrimination against green-eyed people in that occupation. They only do this when the discrepancies involve a certain set of groups--non-whites, women, and so on--because these groups have historically faced discrimination.
We have seen attempts to add old people and fat people to this set of groups, but they haven't caught on like the others. The same concern just isn't there because the history (and, I would argue, the sensitivity encouraged by liberal education) isn't there. Racism and sexism usually invoke stronger emotions than ageism and "weightism."
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