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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When I see the rise of conspiracy theory, and when I see the disunity of this society that I have decided to make myself a member of via immigration, it makes me incredibility painful, so I have something to say.

1. People are highly influenced by all the sensory inputs and information that they comprehend. In fact, there is a school of thought in psychology (radical behaviourism by B.F Skinner) that suggest free will is a delusion, and people are only the product of all the stimulant that they ever received in their life. This suggests as our society become more diverse, there will be more political opinions and political entities, as diversity implies people's life experience will be increasingly different. Social media is making this situation worst, as it allows more people to congregate virtually, which further increases the number of political entities.

2. Additionally, as a society become increasingly wealthy materially, fewer people will care about making money and turn their focus into other topics they found themselves interested in. This will also create a situation where there is an increasing quantity of political opinions and political entities.

3. A democracy is a system that makes political decisions based on consensus. A system that bases on consensus imply compromises and negotiations are required. However, as our society becomes more diverse in political entities, compromises and negotiations become more difficult. Consequentially, our society becomes less capable of making political decisions. This has become apparent that our society can't even deal with a pandemic without significant objection, where the pandemic is an obvious and immediate threat to the wellbeing of our society. This is what concerns me. Some will argue making good political decisions are more important than making more political decisions, however, in many cases, trial and error is the only way to see is a political decision good or not. As a result, if we become less capable at making political decisions, we are also less likely to figure out political solutions to our problems.

Think about it this way, if we are entering into a world war right now, will our society be unified enough that we can enforce conscription, like what we have done before? I think we all know the answer.

So my solution......

1. Firstly, we need to start by understanding diversity is not a strength, but instead, a weakness that we tolerate because it is the byproduct of respecting the freedom of expression. Where freedom of expression is required for creativity, a key ingredient in a service base (and advance - manufacturing base) economy. This suggests the degree of diversity in society needs to be measure, monitor, and control.
2. We need to create a gatekeeper mechanism. This means if an opinion is too unpopular with a significant minority of people, the discussion of those opinions will be temporarily restricted in the press and on social media. This will serve as an emergency brake, in case a certain topic becomes too polarizing that it threatens to pull our society apart. Where this policy will give people time to cool down while allowing our society to move on to other issues that are easier to resolve.
3. We need to create a system to incentivize people to engage in respectful discussion with people of different opinions. I propose that we need to set up a system where people are rewarded and punish base on the frequency and attitude of said interaction.
4. We need to recreate a common "Canadian" experience that will bind our country back together. How to do it is another story, some will argue compulsory military service is a good idea, and it may be needed as the world is entering a dangerous phase geopolitically. However, we all know how “courageous” (politically dumb) this is.
 

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Wow, so wrong on so many levels, I'm not even sure where to start.

First diversity and open dialog must be encouraged, we need more protections, not more gatekeepers.

The big risk is that when things are going bad, nobody steps up to say "we're going the wrong way"

This is why Free Speech is one of the most important freedoms.
Do you really think shutting down discussion of an important concept will make things better?

Like the BLM protests, we should have just "shut them down", until they "cool off" over the abuses inflicted by police.
yeah, lets silence them, while people are dying.

That's one huge issue I would hope we could all agree on.

The other stuff is just naive, yes authoritarian dictatorships are great for a lot of stuff. Particularly for being decisive and getting things done. They just have a really nasty habit of being incredibly destructive to the societies they rule.
 

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One source of my current sadness with our system is that The Speaker of the House should have the power to coerce an answer to questions raised, rather than to continue to have the members be allowed to ignore the question with talking points. Then Hansard would become a useful political record of our governmental progress.
 

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One source of my current sadness with our system is that The Speaker of the House should have the power to coerce an answer to questions raised, rather than to continue to have the members be allowed to ignore the question with talking points. Then Hansard would become a useful political record of our governmental progress.
And hook the responders up to lie detector unit at the same time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Wow, so wrong on so many levels, I'm not even sure where to start.

First diversity and open dialog must be encouraged, we need more protections, not more gatekeepers.

The big risk is that when things are going bad, nobody steps up to say "we're going the wrong way"

This is why Free Speech is one of the most important freedoms.
Do you really think shutting down discussion of an important concept will make things better?

Like the BLM protests, we should have just "shut them down", until they "cool off" over the abuses inflicted by police.
yeah, lets silence them, while people are dying.

That's one huge issue I would hope we could all agree on.

The other stuff is just naive, yes authoritarian dictatorships are great for a lot of stuff. Particularly for being decisive and getting things done. They just have a really nasty habit of being incredibly destructive to the societies they rule.
You are assuming the market for ideas is very efficient, where everyone can understand everything and make the right decision. Unfortunately, this is false because there is simply too much information out there, where it doesn't worth people's time to study it anymore, as the cost of understanding political issues exceeds the benefit of making an informed decision (rational ignorant). (After all, your vote didn't worth much.) This will mean people will eventually default to their political biases, which are devoid of facts. Social media simply greatly speed up this process.

In this regard, we absolutely need gatekeepers, as people simply don't have time to understand everything political and make an informed decision.

Representative democracy, a.k.a indirect democracy, itself involves using gatekeeper, if gatekeepers are a bad thing, why don't we use direct democracy, a.k.a referendum for everything political. If you want to try this, you can ask what the Brits feel after Brexit ..... The disastrous outcome of Brexit is another proof that most people are very ignorant politically (and this is rational), and they required people to help them digest information and think (Unfortunately).
 

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You are assuming the market for ideas is very efficient, where everyone can understand everything and make the right decision. Unfortunately, this is false because there is simply too much information out there, where it doesn't worth people's time to study it anymore, as the cost of understanding political issues exceeds the benefit of making an informed decision (rational ignorant). (After all, your vote didn't worth much.) This will mean people will eventually default to their political biases, which are devoid of facts. Social media simply greatly speed up this process.

In this regard, we absolutely need gatekeepers, as people simply don't have time to understand everything political and make an informed decision.

Representative democracy, a.k.a indirect democracy, itself involves using gatekeeper, if gatekeepers are a bad thing, why don't we use direct democracy, a.k.a referendum for everything political. If you want to try this, you can ask what the Brits feel after Brexit ..... The disastrous outcome of Brexit is another proof that most people are very ignorant politically (and this is rational), and they required people to help them digest information and think (Unfortunately).
No, I'm not making such silly and known wrong assumptions.

Well Switzerland has a lot of direct democracy and it works, California has a lot of direct democracy and it doesn't work.
Brexit is a really poor example.

Your argument for "gatekeepers" seems to boil down to people are too stupid to decide for themselves. I agree, they are. However your proposed solution only makes things worse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
No, I'm not making such silly and known wrong assumptions.

Well Switzerland has a lot of direct democracy and it works, California has a lot of direct democracy and it doesn't work.
Brexit is a really poor example.

Your argument for "gatekeepers" seems to boil down to people are too stupid to decide for themselves. I agree, they are. However your proposed solution only makes things worse.
You are putting word in my mouth, I say people are completely rational to be ignorant to politics, as it take a long time to be inform, while your vote didn't worth much. This is just another example of tragedy of commons. I never claim people are too dumb to make political decision.

I certainly believe excessive degree of uniformity is a bad thing. Excessive degree of uniformity, and intolerance of opposing opinion is what leads Japan to attack United State, a country that have much, much more natural resources and industrial outputs than Japan. This in turn, paved the way to the demise of the Japanese empire. I just believe we have so much diversity and opinion that people can no longer effectively, efficiently, and economically keep themselves inform. As a result, we need gatekeeper to help people digest information and become grounded in realities.

In my personal opinion, political decision should be left to political elites that have their personal interest align with their country. Democracy should only be a last line of defense against tyrant. This is the secret sauce that allow the Republic of Venice to last a thousand years. In this republic, most political power are given to the oligarchy that are merchant that do trading with the East. This means this republic is run by people that understood the complexity of politic (successful businessman can understand complicated things), and have the interest to promote the country's interest, as a powerful naval empire is vital to their own business success.

You may argue the interest of the poor or the minority will not be respected, which cause great harm to the society. However, I believe this is not really true, as the ruling class do not want revolt and revolution from the poor. Additionally, this problem can be further mitigated by an independent judiciary and a water tight constitution.

P.S : As a rule of thumb, Switzerland is a one of a kind country, where systems that work there generally don't work elsewhere.
 

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The reasons the systems work there and don't work here is education.
Literacy rates are at around 55% in Canada for adults.
Math literacy is around 45%

If majority of your voters and uneducated then they turn politics into theatre and you have the consequences you are seeing.
Educate the population and lots of problems will be solved. It is hard path though. So politicians are feeding into dumb masses and focusing on slogans rather than meritocracy.
The political elite benefits from ignorant public.
 

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Pure baloney.

Our grandson is far advanced in education entering Grade 8, than we ever were. They are already studying algebra and complex mathematical equations.

He is already studied French for a year in Grade 7 and is continuing to do that. His English and literacy skills are advanced.

I don't know what schools you are talking about, but Ontario has a demanding curriculum. They are already advanced in the use of computers.

The only shortage of skills that I observe are in the skilled trades. Most of the schools have closed up the "shops" due to insurance liability issues.

The one place that countries like Germany excel over Canada is streamlining kids into the trades at an earlier age.

In Canada, every parent wants their kid to go to university. Few parents put any value in the trades.

That is why there is a shortage of young adults in skilled trades today. There are increasing rewards for the few interested.
 

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Pure baloney.

Our grandson is far advanced in education entering Grade 8, than we ever were. They are already studying algebra and complex mathematical equations.

He is already studied French for a year in Grade 7 and is continuing to do that. His English and literacy skills are advanced.

I don't know what schools you are talking about, but Ontario has a demanding curriculum. They are already advanced in the use of computers.

The only shortage of skills that I observe are in the skilled trades. Most of the schools have closed up the "shops" due to insurance liability issues.

The one place that countries like Germany excel over Canada is streamlining kids into the trades at an earlier age.

In Canada, every parent wants their kid to go to university. Few parents put any value in the trades.

That is why there is a shortage of young adults in skilled trades today. There are increasing rewards for the few interested.
Is your grandson an adult?
If not then he is not included in the statistic.

The statistic is that as of 2012, 48% of Canadian ADULTS have inadequate literacy skills.


Like the article mentions. Reading and math is not like riding a bike. If you don't practice then the skills start to dissapear.

"Generally speaking, we're below average compared to other OECD [Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development] countries in terms of adult literacy, numeracy skills," said Michael Burt, an economist with the Conference Board of Canada.
 

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You are putting word in my mouth, I say people are completely rational to be ignorant to politics, as it take a long time to be inform, while your vote didn't worth much. This is just another example of tragedy of commons. I never claim people are too dumb to make political decision.
I didn't mean to put words in your mouth.
That was my interpretation.
People have made the rational choice to be ignorant to politics.
They are therefore unqualified to make political decisions due to their ignorance.
Or in laymans terms, they're too dumb to decide for themselves.

If you feel that grossly mischaracterizes your position, I apologize.

I certainly believe excessive degree of uniformity is a bad thing. Excessive degree of uniformity, and intolerance of opposing opinion is what leads Japan to attack United State, a country that have much, much more natural resources and industrial outputs than Japan. This in turn, paved the way to the demise of the Japanese expire. I just believe we have so much diversity and opinion that people can no longer effectively, efficiently, and economically keep themselves inform. As a result, we need gatekeeper to help people digest information and become grounded in realities.
I would go further, I would suggest that we have so much diversity that the local knowledge problem is basically insurmountable.

In my personal opinion, political decision should be left to political elites that have their personal interest align with their country.
I don't think this is possible, or likely.
I'd like to point out that our current PM is an excellent example of someone whos personal interests have very little in common with the country.

Democracy should only be a last line of defense against tyrant.
Certainly, and the first line of defense is simply only giving the tyrant a small amount of power, and significant limits on how it can be used.

This is the secret sauce that allow the Republic of Venice to last a thousand years. In this republic, most political power are given to the oligarchy that are merchant that do trading with the East. This means this republic is run by people that understood the complexity of politic (successful businessman can understand complicated things), and have the interest to promote the country's interest, as a powerful naval empire is vital to their own business success.
I don't know much about the politics of the Republic of Venice, but long lasting isn't the metric by which I evaluate a political system.

You may argue the interest of the poor or the minority will not be respected, which cause great harm to the society. However, I believe this is not really true, as the ruling class do not want revolt and revolution from the poor. Additionally, this problem can be further mitigated by an independent judiciary and a water tight constitution.

P.S : As a rule of thumb, Switzerland is a one of a kind country, where systems that work there generally don't work elsewhere.
I'd suggest unaccountable dictatorships which remain relatively benign and beneficial to the people are historical oddities and tend not to last.
If anything humans historically flourish on relatively free Liberal societies, which for the most part have been democratic to some extent.

The problem with unaccountable authoritarians is that they have no incentive or reason to respect the diversity of the people they represent, and even if they wanted to, it is basically impossible, due to the local knowledge problem. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Local_knowledge_problem)
This is why I basically support freedom, and as little government as possible.

I have no doubt that whatever gatekeepers you would appoint, would work to benefit themselves, irrespective of the harm to others.
Apparently this was even a problem even in the Republic of Venice (from a quick read of the wikipedia entry).
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
@MrMatt I guess I have a very different objective, I do see a long-lasting country is a good thing, because it provides its people shelter from turmoil of regime changes and civil war.
 
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