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Weakening democracy lol

DrZoidberg

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https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-58805965

I hate these Facebook is ruining democracy articles. Yeah, I get it, journalists think that shifting power dynamics is scary, because any shift means they need to use their little heads to stay in power. And they might risk losing it. No, shit they think it's scary. But democracy isn't threatened by Facebook. What does that even mean?

The foundation of democracy is that we give power to a big bunch of uninformed nitwits who have equally uniformed opinions and elect neutered liars as leaders. We create an environment that is very hard for any single person or group to derail and seize power. Because for the majority of the people, this is rarely a good thing. We're simply, better off organizing society like this. But it is a terrible, inefficient and dumb way to organize society. But it is the best way we've figured out.

How exactly can Facebook make anything worse for society as a whole? What we're seeing is new groups gaining a bit more power. Good for them. And those who enjoyed relatively more power before is having less. Too bad for them. But I can't see how democracy as a whole is in any way diminished.

Thoughts?
 

fromderinside

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Well there were Hitler and Stalin in the last century. One of them is sputtering into meaningful discourse as droughts drive populations to migrate into other populations' territories. Seems the best we can do is say "build better" rather than admonish "one needs only fear fear itself".
 

DrZoidberg

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Well there were Hitler and Stalin in the last century. One of them is sputtering into meaningful discourse as droughts drive populations to migrate into other populations' territories. Seems the best we can do is say "build better" rather than admonish "one needs only fear fear itself".

The Russian revolution started in a monarchy. Ie no democratic tradition. German democracy had existed in exactly 15 years, and was upon it's inception utterly hamstrung and fucked by the "free" world and was dysfunctional to the extreme.

I don't think either of those examples are particularly relevant for the west today. Democracy has delivered excellent results 100+ years in the rest of the west.

I think Chile is the only example of example of stable and well established democracy reverting to dictatorship. And that was with quite a forceful "helping" hand from the land of the free. And that bounced back.

Based on statistics, it doesn't seem like we have much to worry about. No?
 

none

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https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-58805965

I hate these Facebook is ruining democracy articles. Yeah, I get it, journalists think that shifting power dynamics is scary, because any shift means they need to use their little heads to stay in power. And they might risk losing it. No, shit they think it's scary. But democracy isn't threatened by Facebook. What does that even mean?

The foundation of democracy is that we give power to a big bunch of uninformed nitwits who have equally uniformed opinions and elect neutered liars as leaders. We create an environment that is very hard for any single person or group to derail and seize power. Because for the majority of the people, this is rarely a good thing. We're simply, better off organizing society like this. But it is a terrible, inefficient and dumb way to organize society. But it is the best way we've figured out.

How exactly can Facebook make anything worse for society as a whole? What we're seeing is new groups gaining a bit more power. Good for them. And those who enjoyed relatively more power before is having less. Too bad for them. But I can't see how democracy as a whole is in any way diminished.

Thoughts?


Corporations are people.
 

JohnG

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https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-58805965

The foundation of democracy is that we give power to a big bunch of uninformed nitwits who have equally uniformed opinions and elect neutered liars as leaders. We create an environment that is very hard for any single person or group to derail and seize power. Because for the majority of the people, this is rarely a good thing. We're simply, better off organizing society like this. But it is a terrible, inefficient and dumb way to organize society. But it is the best way we've figured out.

I agree that democracy is messy and for the most part everyone is flying by the seat of their pants. It's really hard, and especially hard when you have a diverse population to govern. Politicians can't do anything for one group without pissing off 5 others. I don't like to fall into the trap saying "All politicians are idiots" - because they are not, although we have a system that rewards loud mouth belligerence, and that trait rarely sits aside intelligence. I agree it's the best we have

How exactly can Facebook make anything worse for society as a whole? What we're seeing is new groups gaining a bit more power. Good for them. And those who enjoyed relatively more power before is having less. Too bad for them. But I can't see how democracy as a whole is in any way diminished.

Thoughts?

I do see it as a powerful tool to divide however. Further, division is a powerful tool for gaining political power. The problem with using FB as a political tool is that it rewards outrage. Engagement = $, and engagement is driven by fueling rage.

There is nothing inherently wrong with leveling the field of discussion, but the core of the discussion is driven by rage.
 

DrZoidberg

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How exactly can Facebook make anything worse for society as a whole? What we're seeing is new groups gaining a bit more power. Good for them. And those who enjoyed relatively more power before is having less. Too bad for them. But I can't see how democracy as a whole is in any way diminished.

Thoughts?

I do see it as a powerful tool to divide however. Further, division is a powerful tool for gaining political power. The problem with using FB as a political tool is that it rewards outrage. Engagement = $, and engagement is driven by fueling rage.

There is nothing inherently wrong with leveling the field of discussion, but the core of the discussion is driven by rage.

So? Angry people also have a right to vote
 

steve_bank

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I recently listened to a discussion on social media. I assued pschology is ud sed in the algoritms, but is far worse than I thought.

It is at the point, probably unintended. of shaping thought. It cretes a psycholgical profile and narrows what is highlighted for you.

It is indeed damaging for kids who have no defenses.

Democracy depends on a level of national consensus. It was always difficult, now it appears near impossible. It is not just social media. All of the so called mainstream news media purs out a cbtant strem of negatives.

For example the publishing of 10 year old emails form the Raiders coach. We can nor survive culturally under that constant deconstruction of people and the country. There will be nothing left to believe in other than manufactured pop culture, like music and sports

There is nothing in media or culture today that supports a comma identity.

It is getting violent over here and it is looking at times like what we see in 3rd world countries. Recently ANTIFA showed up in Portend unannounced burning and destroying businesses.

BLM and white supremacists have been shooting at each other.


Democracy has failed here in the USA at the national level. Critical things are not getting done. We have wide swings in policy when the admission changes. It is impossible to do any long term planning as China does. Aging infrastructure and an outdated power grid has been an issue since the 90s.

The system set up at the founding is utterly inadequate to maintain stability today.
 

DrZoidberg

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I recently listened to a discussion on social media. I assued pschology is ud sed in the algoritms, but is far worse than I thought.

It is at the point, probably unintended. of shaping thought. It cretes a psycholgical profile and narrows what is highlighted for you.

That will always be the case. There's always some algorithm or another distorting the public discourse. IN the 17th century people who went to cafés a lot gained an inordinate degree of power, compared to those who didn't or couldn't.

What makes programming algorithms different is that they are explicit in the code. But they have always been there.



It is indeed damaging for kids who have no defenses.

Lol. "But think of the kids". That's always been the case. Kids have always believed all kinds of dumb shit. They've never had defenses. We all know that when we were kids we were idiots. Understanding this and growing up is a part of becoming an adult. And accepting that in some way or another we're always going to be idiots. There's just no way for a single person to know everything that's important.

A positive feature of representative democracy is that it creates a kind of wisdom of the crowd.

Democracy depends on a level of national consensus. It was always difficult, now it appears near impossible. It is not just social media. All of the so called mainstream news media purs out a cbtant strem of negatives.

I think Internet has brought about a kind of shock to the media system. Now we're recalibrating.

Before the Internet the working class and the rurals were dependent on an enlightened and educated urban middle class to speak for them in the national media. Internet changed all this. Now the working class and rurals can speak for themselves.

It's just power shifting from the proxy to the actual people. And that's a good thing IMHO. Yeah, what a surprise that poor people are more racist and homophobic than the liberal urban middle class that used to represent them in media. Their power allowed us to live a lie.

The disempowered old leftist media elite are struggling to stay relevant. I think that's what we are seeing now. That's what the woke movement is all about. Clinging to the old power structure.

It doesn't matter if we like it or not. The old ways are over. New players are in control now. The sooner we accept and move on the quicker sanity and cooperation can return.


Democracy has failed here in the USA at the national level. Critical things are not getting done. We have wide swings in policy when the admission changes. It is impossible to do any long term planning as China does. Aging infrastructure and an outdated power grid has been an issue since the 90s.

The system set up at the founding is utterly inadequate to maintain stability today.

It's allowed to change it a bit to better answer to the needs of a changing world. That's not a failure of the founding fathers.
 

JohnG

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How exactly can Facebook make anything worse for society as a whole? What we're seeing is new groups gaining a bit more power. Good for them. And those who enjoyed relatively more power before is having less. Too bad for them. But I can't see how democracy as a whole is in any way diminished.

Thoughts?

I do see it as a powerful tool to divide however. Further, division is a powerful tool for gaining political power. The problem with using FB as a political tool is that it rewards outrage. Engagement = $, and engagement is driven by fueling rage.

There is nothing inherently wrong with leveling the field of discussion, but the core of the discussion is driven by rage.

So? Angry people also have a right to vote
But the rage is conjured - its not directed at the things that actually need to change to help those enraged. In fact, it's directed at the mechanisms that can help.

There's a meme going around that says "Billionaires pay millionaires to convince the middle class that poor people are the problem" If you don't fix the mechanisms that spew these messages, nothing gets fixed, it gets worse and it all falls apart - just like it has every other time in history.

Not sure why you think this time it will be different.
 

JohnG

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Check out this propaganda from the 30s.

People often ask "How could the Nazis just roll in a take all the Jews from other countries without a fight?"

Other countries were glad to hand them over, even though they were less than 1% of the population. They had been peppered with enough propaganda for years that they eventually believed their problems were because of this tiny segment of the population.

Look at Tucker Carlson's latest special on Jan 6.



These arent the days of flyers posted on telephone poles - these are the days of targeted messaging on a global scale.
 
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