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The Burnsville Socrates Cafe Message Board The Burnsville Socrates Cafe Discussion Forum › 11/30/10 questions and discussion

11/30/10 questions and discussion

Jon A.
Group Organizer
Saint Paul, MN
1.Having rid ourselves of political dynasty, why do we remain tolerant of economic dynasties?

2. How did cave men cut their toenails?

3. Should we be consuming more or less?

4. If we are who we think we are, do others agree?

5. Was Ted Kazinsky right?

6. Should museums return artifacts to where they came from?

7. How do we know what the right thing to do is?

8. What value does WikiLeaks add?

9. If $$ spent is free speech, then what is "hush money?"

10. Where does loyalty fit between good and evil?


And the winner is:
Is profiling good? -- by Shannon

Shannon - it depends on how we define profiling? We don't always have enough information to accurately assess threats.

Kevin - now they base it on appearance and name. My brother went to Egypt before visiting Israel. When he got to Israel they wouldn't let him in for one and only one reason: he was coming from Egypt! How far dare we go?

Jim - Israel is very fussy. Profiling is the use of all available information. You get a catch-22, how many laws are you gonna break do get this info? It's reasonable to include what we can see. There's big difference between this and terrorism -- privileges like flying permit profiling.

David - what does the machine/pat down have to do with this?

Dick - flying is not a privilege.

John - the constitution does give an implied right to travel. TSA is a gov't thing. Can it be a cost benefit operation? Could we do voluntary vetting? Allow individuals to voluntarily yield some privacy rights. Israel: it's practical there because it's a smaller country. we have more air travel.

Phil - There is a Canadian rapper who has a muslim name and half of the time he is prevented from entering the US because of his name. His livelihood, his business, is harmed as the result of our fears. I also travelled with a 14 year old Korean boy whose passport temporarily terrified the TSA in an airport when they incorrectly thought he was from NORTH KOREA.

Dick - how do the airlines differ from the TSA in their approach to terror safety?

Larry - terrorist are winning because we're spending millions. Profiling only insures the terrorists will adapt to whatever we're doing. We're just fighting old battles.

Jim - [interpreted by Jon A.] We're only limited by our imaginations and our fears.

John - the only alternative is Intelligence, which requires profiling.

Steve - their playing the odds.

Jon - psychology, theatre: human psychology makes us likely to overreact to small, intense dangers. We tend to get caught in mental cycles that spin around what frightens us which tends to pull us away from evidence immediately available to us -- evidence outside our imaginations. It takes serious willpower not to be at the mercy of our imaginations, but it can be done and we should be doing it. Sadly we rarely do. Theatre: theatre is very important for demonstrating our determination to be safe and free. Good theatre, that is. Bad theatre is only successful at doing the opposite; insulting people and making angry people angrier/more likely to do harm.

John - prior to '69 there was no airline highjacking, thereafter highjacking picked up, then we set about trying to stop highjackings and they stopped highjacking. so intervention is necessary.

David - there's a lot of cooperation going on behind the scenes to prevent terrorism that we're not seeing.

Jim - It's worth it to destroy ten innocent men, if necessary, in order to stop one terrorist.

Larry - I heard a radio interview with a muslim gal who said "we deserve it. we muslimes should police ourselves."

Steve - post 9/11, we don't see muslims as individuals, we make them monolithic.

Jon - so much for the rights of the individual. When it comes to terrorism, there are no individuals.

John - FAA does for airplanes what TSA does for terror.


Thanks to all who jumped into this fire with me. I apologize for my faulty presentation (but, of course, I still think I'm right . . . .). Welcome, Steve! Hope to see you here again.
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