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Lex Freidman interviews Yeonmi Park

 
diding
 
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diding
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08 July 2021 08:10
 

Ms. Park has an amazing story.  She escaped North Korea by being sold into sex slavery in China.  She educated herself in China and when she eventually got to America, she enrolled at Columbia University where she was shocked and saddened to find that the ideals of The Enlightenment and Liberal Education which she was so excited to explore were absent in the institution.  What she found was orthodoxy and suppression of free thought.  She says in this podcsat that going to Columbia “made her dumber”.  It made her afraid to say things that weren’t approved by the dominant ideology.  She makes many comparisons to things happening in the US to things that she experienced in North Korea.

In another thread I showed a video of people who had fled Communism only to arrive in America to find that the ideology that they had fled from seemed to be gaining traction in the US.  The gist of the rebuttals were “That wasn’t REAL Communism” or “Those people were selected for by virtue of that fact that they probably didn’t benefit from Communism from wherever they came”.  Ms. Park simply wanted not to starve.  What does she get wrong?  Where are the stories form people who love living under Communism?  She says that people in North Korea believe that they’re living their best lives because they don’t know anything about the outside world.  They only have love and reverence for their leader.

https://youtu.be/usDqSEKDVsA

[ Edited: 08 July 2021 08:13 by diding]
 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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08 July 2021 09:38
 

I wonder if the interviews with Mr. Fridman…or Mr. Peterson…or Mr. Hannity touched on any of the inconsistencies in Ms. Park’s story.

 
 
weird buffalo
 
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weird buffalo
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08 July 2021 09:42
 

Talk about an echo chamber, these two and JP is definitely one.

 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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09 July 2021 09:57
 

There is a collection of ideas swirling around the extreme left these days. And to be fair, I don’t know what the acceptable name is for people who largely adhere to these ideas? “woke”? “extreme progressive”?  So for now I’ll use “woke”. I’m happy to use a different term.

The collection of ideas promoted by the woke include things like: trigger warnings, safe spaces, intersectionality theory, CRT, the “oppressors vs oppressed” worldview, identity politics, and so on.

So LJ and weird, I’m trying to understand your reactions to the ideas in this video. The only thing I can conclude is that some of these ideas are in conflict with “woke”?

I could be wrong though..

 
 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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09 July 2021 10:32
 

There’s a credibility issue with the storyteller.  The others are merely pushing their usual agendas. 

I’ve no idea how that connects with your smattering of derogatory labels and ill defined terms.

 
 
icehorse
 
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09 July 2021 10:43
 
LadyJane - 09 July 2021 10:32 AM

There’s a credibility issue with the storyteller.  The others are merely pushing their usual agendas. 

I’ve no idea how that connects with your smattering of derogatory labels and ill defined terms.

So it’s the messenger not the messages?

And, btw, I’m sincerely trying to understand the terms I should use that wouldn’t be considered derogatory. Can you help out with that? Am I wrong to think that the ideas I listed in the OP are in some way “of a kind”?

 
 
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09 July 2021 10:51
 
icehorse - 09 July 2021 09:57 AM

There is a collection of ideas swirling around the extreme left these days. And to be fair, I don’t know what the acceptable name is for people who largely adhere to these ideas? “woke”? “extreme progressive”?  So for now I’ll use “woke”. I’m happy to use a different term.

The collection of ideas promoted by the woke include things like: trigger warnings, safe spaces, intersectionality theory, CRT, the “oppressors vs oppressed” worldview, identity politics, and so on.

So LJ and weird, I’m trying to understand your reactions to the ideas in this video. The only thing I can conclude is that some of these ideas are in conflict with “woke”?

I could be wrong though..

No, I find these complaints about leftist academics to be unfounded and stupid.  The example she gives in the “political correctness” section is that in a class, at the start of it, they took a couple minutes to discuss what the concept of “western civilization” is, and how most of our art and literature history (especially from anything older than a century ago), is predominantly focused on the efforts of white men.  These two seemed to find the idea that we should even question this to be somehow offensive.

The idea that the academic left is coming to be the thought police is stupid, and that the above example is a good example… doesn’t prove the idea is true, but rather just how stupid it is.

The complaint sounds EXACTLY like fox news complaining about the War on Christmas.

 
icehorse
 
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09 July 2021 10:58
 
weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 10:51 AM
icehorse - 09 July 2021 09:57 AM

There is a collection of ideas swirling around the extreme left these days. And to be fair, I don’t know what the acceptable name is for people who largely adhere to these ideas? “woke”? “extreme progressive”?  So for now I’ll use “woke”. I’m happy to use a different term.

The collection of ideas promoted by the woke include things like: trigger warnings, safe spaces, intersectionality theory, CRT, the “oppressors vs oppressed” worldview, identity politics, and so on.

So LJ and weird, I’m trying to understand your reactions to the ideas in this video. The only thing I can conclude is that some of these ideas are in conflict with “woke”?

I could be wrong though..

No, I find these complaints about leftist academics to be unfounded and stupid.  The example she gives in the “political correctness” section is that in a class, at the start of it, they took a couple minutes to discuss what the concept of “western civilization” is, and how most of our art and literature history (especially from anything older than a century ago), is predominantly focused on the efforts of white men.  These two seemed to find the idea that we should even question this to be somehow offensive.

The idea that the academic left is coming to be the thought police is stupid, and that the above example is a good example… doesn’t prove the idea is true, but rather just how stupid it is.

The complaint sounds EXACTLY like fox news complaining about the War on Christmas.

Thanks for this. So would the term “academic left” be an acceptable term for discussions like this? (It works for me, fwiw.)

As for the Fox news mention, from my perspective as a left-leaning centrist / classical liberal / small-l liberal, I am concerned about extremists on both ends of the left/right continuum. There are times when folks in the “academic left” camp will try to lump centrists in with the far right. This seems unhelpful.

 
 
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09 July 2021 11:37
 

You seem to value centrism as a sort of moral good.  I don’t.  I value things that are true.

For example, lets consider the climate debate.  If we choose a methodology that follows the science, we would end up advocating for an “extreme” position.  One in which radical change of our society is most likely required.  Not a few minor changes to a couple of industries, or just encouraging more people to buy a Prius, but radical elimination of carbon emissions.  On the other “extreme” end, we have complete denial that everything is fine and nothing needs to change.

This does NOT mean that the actual truth is somewhere in between.  Using the scientific method, the centrist position is also incorrect.  Now, we could nitpick about which models are the most accurate, but by and large, there is no legitimate scientifically backed model that proposes climate change is happening, but it’s not a very big deal.  There’s just a difference in how soon the bad shit is going to get here.  In such a situation, the centrist position is in certain ways indistinguishable from the extreme view of doing nothing.  They are arguing that we should not solve the problem.

I would analyzing racism in a similar way.  It’s a spectrum of antiracism to racism.  The centrist view would be “just a little bit of racism” is okay.  Sure, it’s less egregious than the full-on racist position, but it’s still fundamentally racist to say that “a little bit of racism” is okay.

Instead of inherently trying to argue for the middle-position.  I think we should instead strive to find out what is true, and then base our decisions off that.

 
icehorse
 
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09 July 2021 12:17
 
weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 11:37 AM

You seem to value centrism as a sort of moral good.  I don’t.  I value things that are true.

Your guess about me is wrong - we agree on your point above smile

weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 11:37 AM

For example, lets consider the climate debate.  If we choose a methodology that follows the science, we would end up advocating for an “extreme” position.  One in which radical change of our society is most likely required.  Not a few minor changes to a couple of industries, or just encouraging more people to buy a Prius, but radical elimination of carbon emissions.  On the other “extreme” end, we have complete denial that everything is fine and nothing needs to change.
This does NOT mean that the actual truth is somewhere in between.  Using the scientific method, the centrist position is also incorrect.  Now, we could nitpick about which models are the most accurate, but by and large, there is no legitimate scientifically backed model that proposes climate change is happening, but it’s not a very big deal.  There’s just a difference in how soon the bad shit is going to get here.  In such a situation, the centrist position is in certain ways indistinguishable from the extreme view of doing nothing.  They are arguing that we should not solve the problem.

Again, we’re agreed. Perhaps it would help to say something like “moderate on social issues”? I’m not quite sure. As my tagline indicates, I’m a fan of good naming conventions, and it seems tricky to establish categories so that these ideas can be discussed.

weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 11:37 AM

I would analyzing racism in a similar way.  It’s a spectrum of antiracism to racism.  The centrist view would be “just a little bit of racism” is okay.  Sure, it’s less egregious than the full-on racist position, but it’s still fundamentally racist to say that “a little bit of racism” is okay.

Instead of inherently trying to argue for the middle-position.  I think we should instead strive to find out what is true, and then base our decisions off that.

I think moderates do what you’re saying. I don’t think moderates would conclude “a little racism is okay”. Instead, I think moderates would seek to find ways to combat racism that don’t create new schisms in society.

 
 
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09 July 2021 12:51
 
icehorse - 09 July 2021 12:17 PM
weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 11:37 AM

You seem to value centrism as a sort of moral good.  I don’t.  I value things that are true.

Your guess about me is wrong - we agree on your point above smile

weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 11:37 AM

For example, lets consider the climate debate.  If we choose a methodology that follows the science, we would end up advocating for an “extreme” position.  One in which radical change of our society is most likely required.  Not a few minor changes to a couple of industries, or just encouraging more people to buy a Prius, but radical elimination of carbon emissions.  On the other “extreme” end, we have complete denial that everything is fine and nothing needs to change.
This does NOT mean that the actual truth is somewhere in between.  Using the scientific method, the centrist position is also incorrect.  Now, we could nitpick about which models are the most accurate, but by and large, there is no legitimate scientifically backed model that proposes climate change is happening, but it’s not a very big deal.  There’s just a difference in how soon the bad shit is going to get here.  In such a situation, the centrist position is in certain ways indistinguishable from the extreme view of doing nothing.  They are arguing that we should not solve the problem.

Again, we’re agreed. Perhaps it would help to say something like “moderate on social issues”? I’m not quite sure. As my tagline indicates, I’m a fan of good naming conventions, and it seems tricky to establish categories so that these ideas can be discussed.

weird buffalo - 09 July 2021 11:37 AM

I would analyzing racism in a similar way.  It’s a spectrum of antiracism to racism.  The centrist view would be “just a little bit of racism” is okay.  Sure, it’s less egregious than the full-on racist position, but it’s still fundamentally racist to say that “a little bit of racism” is okay.

Instead of inherently trying to argue for the middle-position.  I think we should instead strive to find out what is true, and then base our decisions off that.

I think moderates do what you’re saying. I don’t think moderates would conclude “a little racism is okay”. Instead, I think moderates would seek to find ways to combat racism that don’t create new schisms in society.

MLK jr wrote you a letter.

edit:  your argument is that movements like BLM is divisive.  My counter to that is that it isn’t.  The schism that exists ALREADY EXISTED, and so therefore cannot be a product of BLM.  If you want to argue that a group like BLM is divisive, you would need to provide evidence that no schism/division existed prior to BLM.

[ Edited: 09 July 2021 13:36 by weird buffalo]
 
icehorse
 
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09 July 2021 14:01
 

weird:

It’s a spectrum of antiracism to racism.

weird:

Your argument is that movements like BLM is divisive.  My counter to that is that it isn’t.  The schism that exists ALREADY EXISTED, and so therefore cannot be a product of BLM.  If you want to argue that a group like BLM is divisive, you would need to provide evidence that no schism/division existed prior to BLM.

I largely agree with your first claim, although I would probably use a different label than “anti-racism”.

But then it seems that you’re ignoring your first claim and saying that the schism is a binary thing, not a continuum. To be clear, I think that there are ASPECTS of BLM that are divisive. But false dilemmas like “oppressors and oppressed”, are just that, false dilemmas. And they’re divisive and counter productive.

 
 
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09 July 2021 15:11
 

So, $0 to $10 is a spectrum.  But any amount of money… is an amount of money.  It cannot be $0.  If our spectrum is 0-10, with zero being “no racism”, then any amount along the spectrum… is some amount of racism.  I agree, you can occupy any space on that spectrum that you’d like to occupy… but any value other than 0… must by definition, include some amount of racism.

In addition, 0 and 10 cannot be mirrors of each other.  They are definitionally not the same.  Horseshoe theory is bullshit.

 
Cheshire Cat
 
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09 July 2021 18:27
 

I watched about half of the video. I read most of the article LJ had posted also.

The thing I found most telling about the article, was that Yeonmi Park is backed by the American Libertarian non-profit organization, Atlas Foundation. As journalists like to say: Follow the money.

I suppose Ms Park is weaving a narrative and story which libertarians like very, very much.

It goes like this:

Look at North Korea. It is a country where the government inhabits every aspect of your life. You cannot travel without state approval. You cannot change jobs without state approval. In fact, you can’t do anything without state approval. And, Dear Leader is not only the head of your country, but he is a god. He is your god.

So let this be a warning to all you moderates and leftists who are pushing for universal health care, taxing the rich and corporations, increasing public education, imposing environmental regulations — you might get what you ask for — you might turn the United States into something resembling North Korea.

It is an absurd warning. But then, libertarianism is absurd.

I don’t like libertarianism. I see it as indistinguishable from social darwinism.

Libertarians hate government. Except for the police, military and fire departments, they believe we should have as little government as possible.

America currently is a blend of capitalism and socialism. It’s a constant see-sawing back and forth between the two. Libertarians, however, want total, unfettered, laissez-faire capitalism.  This would be a nightmare in my opinion. There would be no way to fight back against the greedy and powerful, unless you became one of them. With libertarianism, the government is not here to serve you; it is here to protect you in only the most rudimentary way. You are on your own.

Ms Park’s stories may or may not be true. We do know that North Korea is a terrible place to live. But her connection to the Atlas Foundations has made me very skeptical of her claims. There is an agenda here that she is promulgating. It’s not just about an escape to freedom.

 
 
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09 July 2021 19:34
 
Cheshire Cat - 09 July 2021 06:27 PM

America currently is a blend of capitalism and socialism. It’s a constant see-sawing back and forth between the two. Libertarians, however, want total, unfettered, laissez-faire capitalism.  This would be a nightmare in my opinion. There would be no way to fight back against the greedy and powerful, unless you became one of them. With libertarianism, the government is not here to serve you; it is here to protect you in only the most rudimentary way. You are on your own.

 

Agree. Unfettered capitalism is what gave us slavery, genocide, child labor, and inequality in the work place. It is an invitation to exploit other humans. But, it does create wealth, opportunity, and innovation.  So, we need a blend of it and socialism, which basically all modern states have, to one degree or another. Government does not have to be the enemy.  It is supposed to be of the people, by the people, and for the people.  The proper balance is the key, as in most of life.

 
weird buffalo
 
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10 July 2021 07:40
 

I would add that China is a good example as a warning for us.  China was authoritarian, then they started to open up their economy to allow for more capitalism.  The elites who were in control are still in control, and likely have entrenched themselves in power even more.  Capitalism didn’t bring democracy to China.  It just gave the elites more stuff.

 
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