"Is Authoritarianism Destroying America?" discussion in central Phoenix!

  • November 7, 2010 · 5:00 PM

Join us for our most important Meetup ever as we tackle the controversial topic of being a Control Freak with a frank discussion on "Is Authoritarianism Destroying America?" In a country where seemingly more and more political decisions involve controlling people's pocketbooks and property (including one's health care); in an ever-increasing political environment where there are fewer and fewer effective limitations on the size, power, and scope of government; where there is increasingly more and more authoritarian regulations and controls in the (formerly) private workplace; where most institutions of so-called "higher learning" are hotbeds for mainstream intolerance (despite vociferous claims to the contrary) and ultra-zealous, rigid "political correctness"; and with American's individual political values seem to be increasingly less independent and freedom-oriented and more co-dependent, autocratic, and control-oriented (as voted for by tens and tens of millions of Americans), how is this affecting America? And in a country where it seems the mass media eloquently frames almost all political debate along authoritarian lines: supporting, promulgating, and reinforcing the dogmatic values of authoritarianism, including comparing their political opponents to Adolf Hitler and the Nazis, how has this affected the average American's view of the world? And in a country of increasing interpersonal relationships involving self-absorbed, passive-aggressive, and co-dependent entanglements, how is this all affecting Americans and America? At this Meetup we will discuss how authoritarianism (i.e., self-defeating, deceitful/manipulative control) affects our lives, our workplaces, our schools, our relationships, and the impact of such on humanity. We will discuss this topic along the lines of irrational fear-based motives and the consequences of such on our individual lives and on America. Some issues we will discuss include:
>What is the nature and root cause of authoritarianism?
>What are the types of control/manipulations people foist upon others?
>How does the mass media shape mainstream authoritarian thought?
>How does authoritarianism affect people individually and globally?
>How can people live a less-controlling/manipulative, more rational/philosophical life? For the purposes of this Meetup, the term "Freedom" will be used in a context of free choice, as well as in accordance, and wholly compatible, with all human virtues: self-respect, self-reliance, self-direction, self-responsibility, rationality, etc. Whereas the term "Authoritarian" will be used in a context of uninitiated political force as well as in accordance, and wholly compatible, with all human dysfunctions: self-alienation, manipulative control, disrespect, irresponsibility, dependency, irrationality, etc. "Destroy" will refer to causing irreparable harm. Study links:
>What is Co-dependency?
http://en.wikipedia.o...
>Traffic Cameras check for speed, insurance, tax debts, seatbelts, and tailgating:
http://www.dailymail....
>All Republicans depicted with Hitler mustaches at a recent political "Insanity" rally:
http://msnbcmedia2.ms... APPROXIMATE MEETUP ITINERARY
5pm Socializing
5:30pm Member Introductions and Assumptions
6pm Discussion (Evidence, Causality, Contradictions, Ethics, Antithesis, Analogies, etc.)
7:30pm Conclusion and Member Final Remarks
8pm End Meetup EVENT ATTENDANCE Please read Steve C's "12 Guidelines for Harmonious Discussions and Truth-Seeking" (below) PRIOR to attending the event. Please note that these "guidelines" exist to facilitate the discussion, not impede it, and are based on years of experience at Meetup discussions. View the guidelines at:
http://www.meetup.com...

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  • Michael

    Fun meetup--as always, political arguments are emotionally charged. I feel like I could have done a better job presenting my position, and we could have done a better job at narrowing the scope of the discussion, but I do feel that some important issues were addressed.

    To me, the main question that we focused on is this: Is it morally justified for government (ideally a representation of group will) to force the individual to do things against his or her will for (supposedly) the group interest. So I think much of this discussion will be addressed in an upcoming meetup.

    Widely disparate opinions on this topic, but I think everyone agreed that as it is practiced currently, Authoritarianism in the guise of corporate-controlled big government is doing more to hurt America than to help.

    November 7, 2010

  • Steve

    We generally agreed that Authoritarianism is destroying America, but for different reasons. Thanks everyone who showed up for honoring your RSVP.

    November 7, 2010

  • Michael

    Anarchy is more of a theoretical condition than a state experienced in real life. Anarchy as it is practiced by anarchists is quite different from textbook "anarchy" as it were, since it revolves around being in opposition to a more organized state and exploiting its resources (or waste thereof).

    Re: this meetup: These rules are not unreasonable, nor are they anything with which any self-respecting anarchist would disagree--most agree with discussion and the pragmatic, establishment of rules.

    October 27, 2010

  • Jonathan

    Maribel - Anarchy is a temporary state. The end result is usually tribalism and an eventual oligarchy. Anarchy is the absence of rule of law, there no way to delegate your right to self-defense. It is where the frail and weak and robbed by violated with no recourse available to them. It is might, against might. Were everyone must protect life and property at all times with arms. Maybe a discussion on "anarchy" would be a good idea. - Good comments by the way...

    October 5, 2010

  • Maribel T.

    Hi Annette! I was responding to Jonathan, I guess. Totally get where YOU were coming from. Yeah :) It's a bit funny.

    October 5, 2010

  • Steve

    These aren't "rules" per se, but guidelines. And they are written, first and foremost, for the moderators in the group; as examples (based on years of experience) of what happens at our discussions, and to nip in the bud those sorts of things that can spin out of control and allow discussions to get off on tangents way beyond the scope of the particular discussion. These guidelines also exist to let people know (in advance) what to expect at our meetups.

    October 5, 2010

  • A former member
    A former member

    I realize the rules were set in place probably because someone has come in and done all the things that we are warned against..but I do not believe that less rigid rules=anarchy. That is an extreme reaction isn't it? I was just stating that I was amused..that's all:-)

    October 3, 2010

  • Maribel T.

    Hi, I am a new girl. Looking forward to meeting and discussing issues I am passionate about.
    Regarding anarchy, I don't think anarchy means that you cannot establish any type of rules whatsoever. I don't think anarchy says for example if you own a business that you cannot setup rules or SOP's.

    October 2, 2010

  • Jonathan

    "I have to say, I find it amusing that we are discussing if authoritarianism is "destroying America" and then laying down the law with regard to how we will allow the discourse to transpire. "

    Freedom can not exist in anarchy. Laws enable freedom to exist. In this context, it means everyone gets to speak and have a good time.

    September 25, 2010

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