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Old 03-24-2010, 10:17 AM   #1
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Politcal Discussions (not a discussion of politics)

This is not a discussion of politics!

I would love to see a thread started where people can openly discuss their views of politics and not get offended when someone disagrees. I enjoy talking about politics, especially with people as smart/smarter than myself, and I enjoy having open ended discussions with people that are not of the same viewpoint as myself. These topics help me learn, they give me new viewpoints, and maybe even sometimes change the way I think about some things. However, some people can't have these types of conversations, they do get offended and hurt and become defensive even if no one is directly attacking their views.

However, I would personally love to see a thread started that does allow politics as a topic of discussion. We can keep religion out, we can keep anything else out, but I personally enjoy discussing politics and there are some pretty bright cookies here that I would enjoy discussing things with. Maybe we could have a thread or section of the forum that is an invite only for posters. If someone loses their cool or tries to become offensive/defensive they can be warned and if it continues they can have their posting privileges revoked for that topic/section.

Well, thanks for reading,
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Old 03-24-2010, 03:16 PM   #2
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I like learning about and discussing major issues that need to be dealt with but I really dislike the politics that inevitably get tied up with such discussions. For example, U.S. health care reform is really complex and very interesting in the details and it would undoubtedly be very useful for people to learn by struggling through those details and discussing alternative ways to change them. This is what technocrats do, although generally they are far more familiar with the details and their implications and don't have to start from scratch like most citizens would. But it is absolutely impossible to have any discussion with anyone anywhere these day on a subject like this without opinions popping out, usually those based on the person's political leaning. And usually it gets ugly in a hurry. (I'm not speaking about MobileRead but rather people everywhere.) Why? Why can't we discuss something rationally and dispassionately? I don't think that people understand the meaning of those words any more. But I hope some day we all do and maybe appreciate them. And don't let me imply that I think I'm somehow immune to the disease I think nearly all of us have. I've had my share of irrationality and passion, too.

Last edited by vivaldirules; 03-24-2010 at 03:29 PM.
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Old 03-24-2010, 03:26 PM   #3
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We have had a few Seriously Thoughtful discussions of issues of the day that did not devolve into name calling and invective. They are, sadly, rare. The reason we as moderators clamp down on political discussions is that they can become very rapidly a mess. Even moderators, myself included, have been know to punch the tar baby. So, if you would like to start a thread on a particular topic and label it Seriously Thoughtful and take some of the responsibility to keep requesting that it stay on topic, please feel free to do so. But there is little tolerance for playground level interaction on the part of the moderation team. In fact, if you would like to have our help in keeping the thread between the sign posts, click the report button and ask for one or two of us to subscribe to the thread and keep an eye on it.
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Old 03-24-2010, 03:37 PM   #4
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Well Pshrynk, I might just have to take you up on that offer. Before I do so I would like some clarity as to how far we can let the thread go before cleaning up has to take place. I do understand that name calling is out of the question, and if anyone devolves to calling other people's ideas "stupid" we'll need to push things back on track, but is there anything else I'm missing here? Are there any topics that are and should remain completely out of these forums?
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Old 03-24-2010, 03:43 PM   #5
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Topics that start out by insulting or denigrating others are not wanted. Discussion of the merits of a political point of view are fair game. We just want to keep reminding particiapnts that attacking the person, rather than discussing the topic will be seen as one step closer to thread closure. It's really a vague answer, I know, but it's sort of like the definition of obscenity: "I know it when I see it."
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Old 03-24-2010, 04:34 PM   #6
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Alright, thanks Pshryink.
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Old 03-24-2010, 05:39 PM   #7
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Just as a point of clarification and curiosity, does that also apply to religion or no? While it seems to me that despite the sensitivity of politics it can be a very important thing to debate publicly (that is, with people who have different political views or opinions) at least for as long as the discussion remains mature, it also seems to me that religion is not so important to debate publicly (that is, with members of different religions than one's own or lack thereof), and is often more sensitive than politics are, so I was curious about the forum's stance on it.

(Worry not, I have no intent to start a religious debate! This is purely curiosity lol.)
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Old 03-24-2010, 05:44 PM   #8
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I believe that we would not be open to discussions about religion, since that is a completely different thing and those discussions get nasty even more quickly than politics. Sorry.
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Old 03-24-2010, 05:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pshrynk View Post
I believe that we would not be open to discussions about religion...
But what about us non-believers?
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Old 03-24-2010, 05:51 PM   #10
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Wondered if anyone would catch that...
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Old 03-24-2010, 05:55 PM   #11
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Religion and politics have a way about them that even if you are being civil you still got the mindset that the other individual is indeed a total jackass.
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Old 03-24-2010, 06:03 PM   #12
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No need to apologize on that one, pshrynk, I actually think that's the wiser stance.
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Old 03-24-2010, 06:06 PM   #13
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I love a good political discussion. I just don't like them in ebook forums. Nor do I appreciate ebook discussions in political forums.

And in MobileRead,I find political discussions to look like an industrial smokestack belching out noxious fumes into the pastoral beauty that is MobileRead.

I would hope people could find a nice political, non-ebook related, forum to discuss politics.

And besides, does anybody really believe they are going to change anybodies political view here? I just use political forums to either learn from, and unite with, like minded individuals, or (figuratively) bash in the brains of those too ignorant to hold my perfectly rational political views.
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