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RADICALS & EXTREMISTS! Our words for someone else's pain?

"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice" Barry Goldwater famously said.   Sam Harris thniks that gun control advocates are  "radicals."

Aren't extremists really just people who have had different life experiences? Or, are they just people out of sync with the mob? Particularly OUR mob.

To be in the 1 % who are actually right, does that make you a radical or extremist?


Quakers and 19th Century Republicans opposed slavery.  They are called "radicals," even today.  Does that mean that we are ok with slavery today?  Apparently it does.


Galileo was a extremist, he thought the earth spun around the sun.  A "moderate view" would have been to agree with the Pope, (The joke would have been on you, the Pope agreed with Galileo.  He just had another agenda agenda.)

Likewise if you were against the Vietnam War, you would have been with Robert McNamara.  He just didn't mention that it should not have been fought and could not have been won.  He didn't want to upset LBJ.

Were Pasteur and Darwin and Einstein radicals?  (When Einstein submitted his relativity paper for publication, it was rejected as being too radical.)


Could those terms just be about WHO IS SUFFERING?

If I suffer and try to do something about it, I am a "freedom fighter", like George Washington.


If you suffer and try to do something about it, you are a "radical" like...Geronimo, Martin Luther King, Jr, Hugo Chavez, Yasser Arafat, etc.

It can't possible be about violence, none of them could possibly have ever dropped as many bombs on people as we have.




How do we measure such things?


What do YOU think?



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  • Cathy W.

    Seeing "The Wave" last night has gotten me thinking about the value of "contrarians" who stand up against the conventional wisdom.

    May 19, 2013

  • Joan

    I'd like to attend, but I'm still having work done on my house.

    May 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    My roommates and I will not be able to make it tomorrow, unfortunately--the weather is looking nice so we're going to follow through with our hot springs plans. Hope to be at the next meetup :]


    May 18, 2013

  • Steven N.

    Wish I could go!

    Absolutely no experience with extremism anyhow. Everyone I know is moderate, even tempered and balanced. :-)

    May 14, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Well, I hope I can make this meetup. I'm not sure enough yet to rsvp, though. Extremism seems to be a blanket term that is used instead of engaging rigorously in rational debate. The media jumps all over this word as a label for anyone who opposes big government, or atleast that's what I've noticed. But, I think of several religious sects as being extremists. Surely there is an objective standard we can measure such things by... I will be thinking on it ...

    May 12, 2013

  • Richard M.

    Well said! That has been the position of dictators since their creation.

    2 · May 11, 2013

  • Christopher G.

    Our system has reached a state of unquestionable perfection. The only ones who suffer are those who refuse to accept that the system is perfect and in no need of improvement, and so it is their refusal that creates their suffering. Accept or submit to the system, and suffering ends.

    1 · May 11, 2013

  • John K.

    I may be doing extremism field work instead.

    April 28, 2013

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