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Thread: Political Discussions

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  1. #1
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Political Discussions

    The Non-Sports Chatter section is now littered with locked threads due to its bordering on being political. Without getting into a discussion of what's political and what isn't, why are politics such taboo around here? What is the basis for such a policy?

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    Re: Political Discussions

    You're asking moderators to a spend a large amount of their free time moderating discussions in which people are highly unlikely to change their minds on the topic. When we did previously allow these, the political threads were often threads that required the most moderation due to repeated rules violations. These threads often got very heated and it at times carried over to non-political threads. We only have a certain amount of time our moderators can voluntarily offer to the site and I'm not going to ask them to spend a good chunk of that time moderating topics that has nothing to do with the primary focus of this site. Primarily for that reason, political and religion-based threads have been moved off site for numerous years and we're not going back on that decision. Our stance on this has been very clear since it was implemented: no political or religion-based threads on this site.

    Also see the stickied thread in the Non-Baseball chatter forum on this very topic.

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Why was the thread on the health hazards from what's going on in Japan closed?

    The only person who tried to post political opinions was Dom Hefner. I asked him three times to stop going there because I figured that his repeated attempts to turn it political would close it. The rest of us would stay on the topic and he'd come along and throw out comments about people's political agendas. The rest of us were just trying to find out about the health risks of what's going on.

    Now you've closed a good information thread that helps the general public just because one poster stuck his two cents in about his political feelings about nuclear energy. The rest of us didn't have an opinion one way or another and were sharing information about links that reported health risks/concerns and links that reported where we need not be worried about our health (at whatever particular times that the links were presented).

    This is too important a topic to let one person ruin it for everyone else.

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    Why was the thread on the health hazards from what's going on in Japan closed?

    The only person who tried to post political opinions was Dom Hefner. I asked him three times to stop going there because I figured that his repeated attempts to turn it political would close it. The rest of us would stay on the topic and he'd come along and throw out comments about people's political agendas. The rest of us were just trying to find out about the health risks of what's going on.

    Now you've closed a good information thread that helps the general public just because one poster stuck his two cents in about his political feelings about nuclear energy. The rest of us didn't have an opinion one way or another and were sharing information about links that reported health risks/concerns and links that reported where we need not be worried about our health (at whatever particular times that the links were presented).

    This is too important a topic to let one person ruin it for everyone else.
    With all due respect, that thread, and your statement about Dom Hefner, and the insults directed at him in that thread, raise the precise problem I have seen in other threads. Specifically, one person posts their opinion on some topic, which is blatantly political. Then someone responds with a contrary opinion, and only the person who responds is accused of being political. In other words, people tend to believe that their opinions are not political, but that other, contradictory opinions on the same topic are.

    Two posts above Dom Hefner's first post in that thread, Sea Ray posted this:
    Let's look at the worst nuclear accident in this country, Three Mile Island. It too was overblown by the Press but in their defense, at the time we didn't know what the long term effects would be. We now know that it was really quite minimal. In fact Wiki said the following:

    A variety of studies have been unable to conclude that the accident had substantial health effects.
    This is stating a political view about an important policy issue: namely that people and the press generally overreact to anything that has to do with nuclear power, and that they specifically overreacted to the incident at Three Mile Island. As I said in another thread about a Sea Ray post (the teachers thread), there is nothing wrong with this per se. (And actually, unlike the teachers thread, I probably agree a little more with Sea Ray on this one.) But it puts someone who disagrees in an awkward position: either let something they believe is important and wrong stand unrebutted, or get dragged into a forbidden political discussion.

    Just thinking about that thread in particular, there were links to a lot of "information" about nuclear safety. I don't know enough to have a dog in this fight, but surely that thread is not all that useful if someone can't chime in and say, "um, that information is from the Society For Increasing Nuclear Power in America, and therefore may not be all that reliable." And if someone is posting stuff from the Sierra Club or whatever, someone should be able to point that out as well, as potentially unreliable. Then, bam, we are in a political discussion again.

    I think my point is that some topics are just always going to be political, and therefore people may just have to find some other place to talk about them than a Reds message board.

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by top6 View Post
    But it puts someone who disagrees in an awkward position: either let something they believe is important and wrong stand unrebutted, or get dragged into a forbidden political discussion.
    Exactly, thank you.


    Sea Ray, you link was to a right-wing radio station, featuring a well-known flak for nuclear energy. To say that you're just trying to "inform" is completely disengenous.

    But, if it were up to me, you'd be allowed to do so. And I'd be allowed to respond it kind.

    But it's not my board, so if politics isn't allowed then that link should've been removed.

    What happened is that link was allowed to stand while my comments about it's credibility, or lack thereof, was removed. That's inconsistent.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo View Post
    Exactly, thank you.


    Sea Ray, you link was to a right-wing radio station, featuring a well-known flak for nuclear energy. To say that you're just trying to "inform" is completely disengenous.

    But, if it were up to me, you'd be allowed to do so. And I'd be allowed to respond it kind.

    But it's not my board, so if politics isn't allowed then that link should've been removed.

    What happened is that link was allowed to stand while my comments about it's credibility, or lack thereof, was removed. That's inconsistent.
    My link was to a quote from an expert in nuclear energy that came from the ABC affiliate in Chicago. Your attempts to label it and the expert are to put it mildly, "weak". If you don't think he's qualified then say so; better yet, put your own expert up and tell us why he's more qualified.

    To call Jay Lehr "a Flak" is inflammatory at best and does nothing to help your cause. You may think he's well known but I had never heard of him until after this Japan incident. Maybe I've been under a rock but I've never heard him speak at a GOP convention or seen him in the news politically or otherwise before last week. For you to accuse me of cherry picking someone based on his politics was unfounded on your part. I had/have no idea of his political leanings. I heard him speak about the Japan issue during an interview on CNN and that's the first I'd ever seen or heard of him.

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Sea Ray View Post
    My link was to a quote from an expert in nuclear energy that came from the ABC affiliate in Chicago.
    First of all, the "expert" claim is dubious. He's not a nuclear engineer, he has a Geological Engineering degree from Princeton and PhD in Environmental Science, whatever that is, from the University of Arizona. He's a noted AGW denier

    Second, characterizing WLS as an "ABC affiliate" is a dodge. The station features Rush, Hannity and Mark Levine. It's political orientation is clear.

    Third, the idea that you just went searching for some facts and came away with Jay Lehr of the Heartland Institute is pretty hard to believe.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Kingspoint, you're more than welcome to start that topic again, provided the think-tank discussions and political meta-commentary about the media stay out of it. That's not just directed at you, but anyone that contributes.

    The thread was closed because it was getting political and the discussion started venturing toward posters instead of the topic itself. Feel free to restart the topic and it won't be locked if it stays on track.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Brutus the Pimp View Post
    Kingspoint, you're more than welcome to start that topic again, provided the think-tank discussions and political meta-commentary about the media stay out of it. That's not just directed at you, but anyone that contributes.

    The thread was closed because it was getting political and the discussion started venturing toward posters instead of the topic itself. Feel free to restart the topic and it won't be locked if it stays on track.
    It seems rather difficult to do so.

    I never posted one opinion of my own about nuclear energy (for Top-6, whether the press under-reports or over-reports a subject isn't a "political" topic, so I have no idea why you're trying to make it out to be one.), nuclear fallout, nuclear uses or any other political idea during that entire thread, yet it did get sabotaged by some who tried to turn it into one be trying to call out people who provided information as being too political to be trusted (whatever that means...I thought we were adults here and could think for ourselves and have the ability to read information and decipher it's usefullness to us or not).

    Then you have a moderator, like Plus Plus, who misinterpret what he/she reads, who tries to turn posts that were attempting to steer posters away from political flaming to get back to the topic on hand and provide some information of what they know, so we can all get better informed on this serious subject.

    It was as simple as this:

    I posted a link to a serious subject that had other links to Federal Government links, Nuclear Energy links, information about a wide range of nuclear topics, none of which I had ever seen or heard of before. I thought this would be a vast source of information for anyone interested in what was going on to get background information, current information, and find sources where scientists collaborated on piecing together facts for public understanding.

    Then out of Left Field, Dom chimes in with something to the effect of "that guy sucks! I'll sell you swamp land if you want to believe that malarky! Do you believe in the Easter Bunny, too?!" That was a political post, flaming, whatever you want to call it. Not acceptable!

    He obviously had some information that he felt wouldn't be covered among the 100's of links that I provided, so I asked him to please give us some information. (I was highly concerned that there would be nuclear fallout coming to Oregon, and I wanted any and all information that anyone could provide on the topic, and nobody seemed more sure of himself than Hefner, so I asked him again after he responded with a more lengthy flaming post. I finally asked him a final time, as I really wanted to find out what was going on. This is a serious subject.)

    As posted by, what seems to be, our only REDSZONE Science Editor who worked for the media, and won a National Award for his expertise, and who had experience dealing with nuclear incidents in the past, he stated that we WILL NOT GET accurate information from normal news sources. Our best bet is to find accurate information from other sources. This was my intention, and my posts and actions repeatedly showed this. Others decided insted to debate the merits of the sources of information rather than do the right thing and provide information on the subject. (It's always easier in life to attack someone's opinons than come up with your own.) Dom thought it was better for him to tell me how I feel and think about nuclear subjects rather than ask me (of which I wouldn't have told him and posted it as that would have been leaning the subject matter towards a political direction, so that's why I ignored his tauntings and instead asked him to share with us what he knew).
    Last edited by Kingspoint; 03-21-2011 at 01:27 PM.

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    he stated that we WILL NOT GET accurate information from normal news sources. Our best bet is to find accurate information from other sources.
    Does this sound like "information"?

    Hysterical, sarcastic, and scientifically illiterate comments are hardly appropriate at time of major disaster. The enormous earthquake in Japan has likely taken many, many lives and destroyed a nuclear power plant facility consisting of multiple reactors. The extremely capable Japanese are working rapidly to address their severe problems. Some "meltdown" of the reactor cores has likely occurred, but the crucial containment vessels are performing admirably.

    Now, I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer but that sounds like ol' fashioned editorializin'.

    But then again, I haven't crossed over into the land where reporting is propaganda and propaganda is information. Yep, mermaids and unicorns.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo View Post
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kingspoint
    he stated that we WILL NOT GET accurate information from normal news sources. Our best bet is to find accurate information from other sources.

    Does this sound like "information"?

    Now, I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer but that sounds like ol' fashioned editorializin'.

    But then again, I haven't crossed over into the land where reporting is propaganda and propaganda is information. Yep, mermaids and unicorns.
    I really have no idea what you're trying to do here. It looks like you took a portion of a post from this thread (where I briefly surmised what a true expert said about news reporting and information of a nuclear nature) and are trying to imply that I wrote it at the thread on the Japan disaster.

    Are you trying to say that the Redszone member who wrote it, Guacarock, is not qualified to speak on the issue of journalism reporting? Are you saying his being honored for an Associated Press Managing Editor's Award on science reporting focusing on nuclear-related topics, mostly bombs, but also energy generation, is not enough of a qualification to say what he said:
    ( http://www.redszone.com/forums/showt...t=88023&page=4 )?

    I don't understand your intention of posting what you posted, but I think that compared to Guararock, most of us are amateurs here (or anywhere) when it comes to putting thoughts on paper when compared to this person, someone whom I've never met or seen before. But, I know a very respected award when I see one, and that one he received is one that's very difficult to obtain and shouldn't be disrespected, especially by those of us who aren't in the journalism business.

    As far as your other quote from the gentleman's post who offered the links to federal sites, praise to the japanese people, empathy over the disaster that has taken place, better reporting avenues for what was going on along with better explanations into the science and terms that were being heard at the time, along with a couple of words in response to what some poster at "oregonlive" had said (that's why I gave the source, so you, as a responsible reader, can use whenever you're curious about the "context" of something you see, and his "Hysterical, sarcastic, and scientifically illiterate comments are hardly appropriate at time of major disaster" comment was directed towards their posts, not anyone at redszone), along with countless links where you and I can help the Japanese people,....I really have no idea what you're attempting to say. If you find all of those links to be propaganda, then I just don't understand what world you're living in. To give to the Red Cross and the United States Agency for International Development ( http://www.usaid.gov/ ), two of the links on the site, is generally considered to be humanitarian gestures.

    So, yes....that is considered good information to give to others.
    Last edited by Kingspoint; 03-22-2011 at 02:53 AM.

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    I really have no idea what you're trying to do here. It looks like you took a portion of a post from this thread (where I briefly surmised what a true expert said about news reporting and information of a nuclear nature) and are trying to imply that I wrote it at the thread on the Japan disaster.

    Are you trying to say that the Redszone member who wrote it, Guacarock, is not qualified to speak on the issue of journalism reporting? Are you saying his being honored for an Associated Press Managing Editor's Award on science reporting focusing on nuclear-related topics, mostly bombs, but also energy generation, is not enough of a qualification to say what he said:
    ( http://www.redszone.com/forums/showt...t=88023&page=4 )?

    I don't understand your intention of posting what you posted, but I think that compared to Guararock, most of us are amateurs here (or anywhere) when it comes to putting thoughts on paper when compared to this person, someone whom I've never met or seen before. But, I know a very respected award when I see one, and that one he received is one that's very difficult to obtain and shouldn't be disrespected, especially by those of us who aren't in the journalism business.

    As far as your other quote from the gentleman's post who offered the links to federal sites, praise to the japanese people, empathy over the disaster that has taken place, better reporting avenues for what was going on along with better explanations into the science and terms that were being heard at the time, along with a couple of words in response to what some poster at "oregonlive" had said (that's why I gave the source, so you, as a responsible reader, can use whenever you're curious about the "context" of something you see, and his "Hysterical, sarcastic, and scientifically illiterate comments are hardly appropriate at time of major disaster" comment was directed towards their posts, not anyone at redszone), along with countless links where you and I can help the Japanese people,....I really have no idea what you're attempting to say. If you find all of those links to be propaganda, then I just don't understand what world you're living in. To give to the Red Cross and the United States Agency for International Development ( http://www.usaid.gov/ ), two of the links on the site, is generally considered to be humanitarian gestures.

    So, yes....that is considered good information to give to others.
    And all Dom Hefner was saying, as I interpreted it, was that the media reporting was probably accurate and/or that the people in some of the links cited were underacting. Again, just the opposite of the opinion you state above.

    All of this raises a question to me though. Why must all of this information be shared on a Reds message board that prohibits political discussions? It is obvious that nuclear power is insanely controversial, and that at the very least some of the authors that people linked to were pushing political agendas. There are literally thousands of places on the internet where this can be discussed, without burdening Mods who are mostly here to talk about Reds baseball which is, I think, supposed to be a distraction from real life.

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    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Political Discussions

    TOP6, there's absolutely nothing political in the post you referenced above. The quote I included was from Wiki. If that's a political website, I'm not aware of its leanings. It directly related to my point that the Press tends to over inflate stuff for ratings, hence the example of Three Mile Island which history has shown to not have caused health problems. My point was about the Press and its tendancy to go with the worst case scenario with the intent of getting ratings.

    Your attempt to turn it into a pro or anti nuclear rant is misguided.

    I never brought up the issue of nuclear power as it relates to policy, now did I?

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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by Sea Ray View Post
    TOP6, there's absolutely nothing political in the post you referenced above. The quote I included was from Wiki. If that's a political website, I'm not aware of its leanings. It directly related to my point that the Press tends to over inflate stuff for ratings, hence the example of Three Mile Island which history has shown to not have caused health problems. My point was about the Press and its tendancy to go with the worst case scenario with the intent of getting ratings.

    Your attempt to turn it into a pro or anti nuclear rant is misguided.

    I never brought up the issue of nuclear power as it relates to policy, now did I?
    Well it seems to me that most - if not all - of Dom Hefner's posts were devoted to disagreeing with your statement and similar statements. So how are his posts political if yours are not?

    Of course, you are not the one saying his posts were political, so that is really more aimed at Kingspoint than you.

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    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Political Discussions

    Quote Originally Posted by top6 View Post
    Well it seems to me that most - if not all - of Dom Hefner's posts were devoted to disagreeing with your statement and similar statements. So how are his posts political if yours are not?

    Of course, you are not the one saying his posts were political, so that is really more aimed at Kingspoint than you.
    It's got nothing to do with Dom or KP. You accused me of being political and I'm asking you to show me where.


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