Dad, I’ve something to tell you...

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Karl_
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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Karl_ » Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:59 pm

Corazon de Leon wrote:
Knoyleo wrote:I'd just like to say that that wasn't intended as a dig at all. It's more, if he's absorbing right wing politics through the PewDiePipeline, he might find more informal delivery easier to absorb. A lot of left wing content on YouTube can sadly come across like a bit of a lecture, and it does put off a certain audience, whose primary purpose on the site is to be entertained, and for a long time, right wing voices have been much better at weaving their politics into entertaining, and often not strictly related, content.


It wasn't taken as such. That was meant as a joke, sorry! :lol:


Out of interest, how do you two think we could / should get across leftist (or at least "not-rightist") ideas to be most effective? We're in a situation now where anti-fascism isn't a kind of... theoretical political stance. I'm not saying this to larp has some kind of hero but it'll be people like us---with strong, principled views against totalitarian ultranationalism---that have to form the core of an anti-fascist resistance in years to come.

Standing in the street screaming "read Marx" at passers-by doesn't seem to be making any measurable impact on the politics of Swansea. (I think I am slowly turning one of my colleagues into an anarchist, but it's 50/50 whether she's just humouring me honestly. ;) )

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Knoyleo » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:33 am

Karl_ wrote:
Corazon de Leon wrote:
Knoyleo wrote:I'd just like to say that that wasn't intended as a dig at all. It's more, if he's absorbing right wing politics through the PewDiePipeline, he might find more informal delivery easier to absorb. A lot of left wing content on YouTube can sadly come across like a bit of a lecture, and it does put off a certain audience, whose primary purpose on the site is to be entertained, and for a long time, right wing voices have been much better at weaving their politics into entertaining, and often not strictly related, content.


It wasn't taken as such. That was meant as a joke, sorry! :lol:


Out of interest, how do you two think we could / should get across leftist (or at least "not-rightist") ideas to be most effective? We're in a situation now where anti-fascism isn't a kind of... theoretical political stance. I'm not saying this to larp has some kind of hero but it'll be people like us---with strong, principled views against totalitarian ultranationalism---that have to form the core of an anti-fascist resistance in years to come.

Standing in the street screaming "read Marx" at passers-by doesn't seem to be making any measurable impact on the politics of Swansea. (I think I am slowly turning one of my colleagues into an anarchist, but it's 50/50 whether she's just humouring me honestly. ;) )

Honestly, I don't know. I think it's easy to identify where the left has lost ground to the right, and needs to catch up so as not to cede these spaces totally, and to identify where the left is doing well, but beyond that identifying what else can be done, and what will be effective becomes a bit of an unknown quantity.

While leftube is great, and getting super creative and entertaining, as well as informative, rather than just being a series of video essays full of academic language and massive bibliographies, it still restricts itself by being explicitly a political space. People will either be put off because they "don't do politics" or because they're already in opposition to the view. There will be some more critical thinkers on the less extreme right who are willing to take in arguments against them, and that deradicalisation content is really important, but it's all about pulling people back from the brink, rather than establishing the left as a mainstream, popular, political belief.

What the right does have is tacit acceptance in not explicitly political spaces. Why does the PewDiePipeline work? People didn't start watching his streams because they wanted jokes about killing Jews, they started because they wanted video games content. Contrapoints uses Tiffany Tumbles as a character to illustrate the same point, a beauty vlogger who brings in an audience after make up tutorials, then peppers her content with islamophobia.

The right probably has an easier time occupying these spaces. Preserving the status quo is seen as the null position in most arguments, even if the status quo is demonstrably right wing. Therefore right wing opinions can exist without being challenging to uncritical viewers, whilst leftist thought often advocates for change, and the promote it even subtly alongside other content, requires the viewer to consider what is wrong currently.

However, far right views can't grow without exploiting people's fears of what is wrong. So at some point, people are being asked to question the way things are. But potentially because they're conditioned to lean slightly right, that pull is then easier for the far right. It shouldn't have to be that way, though. Questions like "why is my rent so high?" and "how come my local hospital's A&E is closing?" should have really straightforward leftist answers that people like. But when the conversation is had, and people realise that rent is high because landlords make profit, they feel uneasy with the idea of restricting profit, because they've been conditioned to think for years that profit is good. When they're told that A&Es are closing because of budget deficits, they think about rising taxes and how bad they would be, because it's the accepted wisdom.

What we need, is broader discourse that challenges more fundamental principles about how we view society. Is individual profit seeking actually good? Why do we demonise Council residents? Isn't paying tax a good thing? How would cooperatively owned business benefit my town? What about cooperatively owned housing?

Obviously, this is all thinking informed by leftist scholars and a history a labour movements, but being explicitly political is not an effective way of engaging people with ideas. Like you say, screaming about Marx down Wind Street probably won't get your far with anyone other than the local union of socialist students. The key is to provide people with ideas and solutions that deal with personal problems, which demonstrate the core principles of left wing beliefs, without actually waving the red flag in their face.

This is all much easier said than done, though. I know only this week I've been linking to articles on Marxist theory in a thread about Rockstar's tax avoidance.

I guess when you want to share your political views with people, it's hard not to be explicit about it. The bonus the shithead alt right has, is that a large amount of their political dialogue is informed by lazy stereotypes and reactionary prejudice, so it just falls out of their gaping shitfunnels at every opportunity without a second thought. It's much harder to be casually pro-unionising on steam than it is to be casually racist.

Apologies for this essay length thought dump, it's probably terrible, as I started writing this while I was in work yesterday afternoon, and have been coming back to sporadically since.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Vermilion » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:04 pm

Knoyleo wrote:and your response to me posting that opinion is to accuse me of getting my knickers in a twist?


So now you're getting your knickers in a twist about me saying you're getting your knickers in a twist.

With so much twisting going on, the chafing must be agony. ;)

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Tineash » Fri Aug 02, 2019 8:34 pm

Vermilion wrote:
Knoyleo wrote:and your response to me posting that opinion is to accuse me of getting my knickers in a twist?


So now you're getting your knickers in a twist about me saying you're getting your knickers in a twist.

With so much twisting going on, the chafing must be agony. ;)


Are you 12?

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Somebody Else's Problem » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:24 pm

Tineash wrote:
Vermilion wrote:
Knoyleo wrote:and your response to me posting that opinion is to accuse me of getting my knickers in a twist?


So now you're getting your knickers in a twist about me saying you're getting your knickers in a twist.

With so much twisting going on, the chafing must be agony. ;)


Are you 12?


No, that's Karl.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Abacus » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:32 pm

Tineash wrote:
Vermilion wrote:
Knoyleo wrote:and your response to me posting that opinion is to accuse me of getting my knickers in a twist?


So now you're getting your knickers in a twist about me saying you're getting your knickers in a twist.

With so much twisting going on, the chafing must be agony. ;)


Are you 12?


I think he has been remarkably calm and good humoured.

What is the relevance of all the nonsense in the last page or so to the actual topic?

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Karl_ » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:52 pm

Abacus wrote:What is the relevance of all the nonsense in the last page or so to the actual topic?

What's off-topic? We're talking about how alt-right ethnonationalists reach out to and convince young people, and how you talk young people down from (or, preferably, inoculate them against) that movement, and how we might combat that movement in general.

I didn't mean to be disrespectful by casting the discussion a little wider. If Suzz wanted the "in general" political discussion in another thread separate to the advice specifically directly at him I would respect that and split it, of course, but he seems OK with the thread as it developed? (Suzz, will you let me know if you'd prefer a split -- it's no problem if you would?)

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Somebody Else's Problem » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:13 pm

Karl_ wrote:I didn't mean to be disrespectful by casting the discussion a little wider. If Suzz wanted the "in general" political discussion in another thread separate to the advice specifically directly at him I would respect that and split it, of course, but he seems OK with the thread as it developed? (Suzz, will you let me know if you'd prefer a split -- it's no problem if you would?)


Who are you calling a split?

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Karl_ » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:14 pm

You for reusing that same damn "12" joke for the last 14 years. :P

(Not your fault but I'd prefer if that meme died, ho hum...)

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Abacus » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:23 pm

Karl_ wrote:What's off-topic? We're talking about how alt-right ethnonationalists reach out to and convince young people, and how you talk young people down from (or, preferably, inoculate them against) that movement, and how we might combat that movement in general.


Well, here is how I read the thread.

The poster finds that his son has different and, to him, abhorrent views.

He still loves his son - of course - but wonders if he is in some way to blame and also wonders whether this is mainly a teenage reaction to what his parents think. Which I think is probably the case; he's probably been briefly radicalised but will develop out of it.

He also feels conflicted at a human level about whether he likes the person his son currently is (the love part being unconditional). We have all had differing opinions with close friends / family members which have affected how we see them as people. If it's not a passing phase, can you still love someone you fundamentally disagree with, or whose views you find hateful?

I think it's a human question about how you deal with people you love but may not like. And whether you blame yourself for those views.

Not a load of claptrap trying to push your own views instead.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Minty14 » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:30 pm

Can we please not entertain the idea that white supremacy/nationalism is just a "different opinion"?

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Somebody Else's Problem » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:34 pm

Minty14 wrote:Can we please not entertain the idea that white supremacy/nationalism is just a "different opinion"?


This. Surely it is a parent's duty to ensure their child doesn't harbour views that are actively harmful.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Moggy » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:38 pm

Minty14 wrote:Can we please not entertain the idea that white supremacy/nationalism is just a "different opinion"?


Person A: “I’d like the world to live in peace and harmony”

Person B: “I’d like the world to live in peace and harmony. Except the French, the bastards”

Person C: “Wir sind uns im klaren, daß dieser Krieg ja nur damit enden könnte, daß entweder die germanischen Völker ausgerottet werden, oder das Judentum aus Europa verschwindet. Ich habe am 1. September 1939 im Deutschen Reichstag es schon ausgesprochen. . . daß dieser Krieg nicht so ausgehen wird, wie die Juden sich es vorstellen, nämlich daß die europäischen arischen Völker ausgerottet werden, sondern daß das Ergebnis dieses Krieges die Vernichtung des Judentums ist. Zum erstenmal werden nicht andere allein verbluten, sondern zum erstenmal wird diesesmal das echt altjüdische Gesetz angewendet: Aug' um Aug', Zahn um Zahn!“

Hmm, they seem like opinions to me.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Abacus » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:38 pm

Minty14 wrote:Can we please not entertain the idea that white supremacy/nationalism is just a "different opinion"?


Factually, it is a different opinion though, isn't it?

I'd agree it's wrong.

So? And that's the whole point.

It would make me think less of someone who thought that way. But what if it was someone you loved?

And is that really them, or is it a rebellion of some sort?

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Abacus » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:44 pm

Somebody Else's Problem wrote:
Minty14 wrote:Can we please not entertain the idea that white supremacy/nationalism is just a "different opinion"?


This. Surely it is a parent's duty to ensure their child doesn't harbour views that are actively harmful.


Or is it your duty as a parent to allow your kids to be armed with the emotional and intellectual tools to come to their own conclusions?

You hope they get it right. But you don't ever really believe anything unless you've come to it yourself, certainly not because you're told how to think.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Karl_ » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:53 pm

Abacus wrote:He still loves his son - of course - but wonders if he is in some way to blame and also wonders whether this is mainly a teenage reaction to what his parents think. Which I think is probably the case; he's probably been briefly radicalised but will develop out of it.

He also feels conflicted at a human level about whether he likes the person his son currently is (the love part being unconditional). We have all had differing opinions with close friends / family members which have affected how we see them as people. If it's not a passing phase, can you still love someone you fundamentally disagree with, or whose views you find hateful?

I think it's a human question about how you deal with people you love but may not like. And whether you blame yourself for those views.

Yeah, those points are interesting. I'm sorry if you felt in some way pressured to not raise them for discussion, but I'm sure that wasn't anyone's intention.

Speaking in general about differences of values/opinions: I don't think someone's views in adulthood (or even young-adulthood) are something their parents necessarily have control over or can feel responsible for. If parents make every effort to raise a child with "good values" (whatever that might mean to them) and then that child grows up and reneges on those values in some way, I don't think parents can blame themselves. Any "blame" is on the (grown-up) kid for making those choices. In general, I hope that the love between parent and child can overcome differences of opinion.

Speaking about fascism in particular: ethnonationalism (along with its aligned far-right perspectives: queerphobia, misogyny, and so on) is probably the most abhorrent opinion someone can have. It is an evil ideology, so evil that I think it transcends 'typical' notions about differences of opinion. But I understand that many parents truly love their children unconditionally. Given that, all you can do as an unconditionally-loving parent in that situation is to be open to discussion, to make the case for the values you think are important (i.e. not being a racist / queerphobe / misogynist / etc.).

Abacus wrote:Not a load of claptrap trying to push your own views instead.

I think you are assuming a level of cynicism here which is undue. Suzzopher is left already; we aren't, like, preying on a vulnerable moment to push our viewpoint! It's just that the vast majority of replies happen to be from leftists, so course the political discussion about antifascism will naturally be from a predominantly leftist perspective.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Abacus » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:03 pm

Yeah, OK. That's a fair and measured response, given my goading last line, which I'll come back to.

If the question is; can I love or even like someone whose (genuine) views are racist / homophobic etc, what would you say?

And if the answer is no - what if you had no choice, because they're family?

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Moggy » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:09 pm

Abacus wrote:Yeah, OK. That's a fair and measured response, given my goading last line, which I'll come back to.

If the question is; can I love or even like someone whose (genuine) views are racist / homophobic etc, what would you say?

And if the answer is no - what if you had no choice, because they're family?


You can love someone without liking them.

My wife is black, my son is mixed race and my stepbrother is gay. Luckily I don’t have any racist/homophobic family members, but if I did then I certainly wouldn’t be visiting very often.

If my son turns out homophobic? It’s hard to know how I’d feel, he’s only 3 so that nightmare is a long way off. I’d never stop loving him, but I could certainly not like him if he turns into an arsehole.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Abacus » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:11 pm

By the 'load of claptrap' line, I'm really referring to your previous post about how you might persuade uninterested people to listen to far left views. You won't.

I'll happily debate these in some relevant thread some rainy day, but... please know that you do sound like the evangelist shouting in the street and that's why people roll their eyes.

Because the far left is not too dissimilar to a religious cult, being based on the inviolability of certain texts and / or figures. A comparison I suspect you won't like, but how outsiders will see it, and not actually that wrong fundamentally.

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PostRe: Dad, I’ve something to tell you...
by Somebody Else's Problem » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:19 pm

Abacus wrote: what if you had no choice, because they're family?


Side note - someone being family does not mean you have to love them.

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