Vislor Turlough wrote:OK, I’m English, so I’m not exactly impartial here – y’know, full of nostalgia for the lost glories of Empire –
The English Empire back then may have seemed glorious, but in order to keep it, you had to take care of a whole countries of people who you don't know, and come up with more practical strategies to make sure they're happy so they won't find an excuse to kill more filthy English (Excuse the "filthy" part. My inner Highlander likes to come out now and again to sound like a Braveheart Scott on the matters of the English, though I love English culture). Of course, there's the argument that when the English was in control of India and others, the hatred for English distracted the colonial subjects from their religious and cultural feuds. Still, as Orwell pointed out in his essay "Shooting an Elephant," English colonialists, as well other European colonialists, were trapping themselves as colonial powers by constantly having to show their colonial subjects why they are supreme. I don't think I can handle kind of responsibility. Some nations still try to maintain control over others, and some still use brute force in order to maintain it.
and I have no time for the sandal-wearing, tree-hugging, statist, tax-loving, Guardian-reading Left
What kind of Left-wing people have you met? The "sandal-wearing" part sounds like something Mr. Burns' father used to say about the Japanese, or "Those sandal-wearing goldfish tenders."
I don't know about the "statist" part, either. Liberal progressives tend to be more anarchic and defiant of the state. Do you think they would defy the status quo if they were statist.
The "tax-loving" part even makes less sense. Left-wingers are more concerned with protecting the rights of individuals and the marginalized than with taxes. Raising of taxes is more a financial-economic thing than a Left-wing thing. No one loves taxes, but having a competent tax system is necessary for a nation's wellbeing. The tax system is so unbalanced in the U.S., that there's a lot of disparity between the heavy-duty wealthy and the rest. We don't have an infinite reserve, as some people like to think. I'm not suggesting that we go with the impractical tax system which the new French president has employed (which ended up scaring away a lot of wealthy French citizens, including Gerard Depardieu), but at least have it be 30% taxes on the super wealthy. That's only fair, and it won't scare them off.
I never read the Guardian either (me being a bloody Yank), but I'm sure it had good articles... I guess.
. . . in short, I am biased . . . but now that Alec Salmond has released the SNP’s White Paper for Scottish Independence, my low-level sense of disquiet at the prospect of a successful “Yes” vote has hardened into outright fear . . . because the flippin’ SNP wants to keep the £ . . . this would be a disaster for all concerned: Scottish, English, Welsh, Northern Irish – because the only example of a currency union we can refer to for a rough idea of how things might work out is the Euro. Yeah, that powerhouse of economic strength & stability, that towering examplar of fiscal rectitude, that paragon of coinage! All sorts of different sovereign polities sharing the same currency without sharing the same fiscal & monetary policies is a recipe for recession, mass unemployment & sharply reduced living standards. Fine, be independent, watch your fragile economy tank like a bitch without huge subsidies from Westminster, but if you think you can keep the £ so you can drag us down with you – think again, sunshine. It’d be worth letting them keep their share of the assets without taking their share of the debts just to avoid a shared currency.
Maybe haggis could be the new currency? Nah, I kidd. I'd have to look into this some more to understand the whole currency thing.
To put my comments in context: if I were an American, I’d vote for Ron Paul.
He seems mild in comparison to his colleagues, but he's not that much different. He's in favor of the gold standard, which would be catastrophic for the U.S. or any country to go on. There's not enough gold to back up all the currency we have. And even though some people debate this point, the gold standard helped bring about the Great Depression. Don't look to some of our U.S. politicians as examples of model leaders. They are often very ignorant about finance and history, and their ideas on what the country should be like are based on assumptions and idealizations. We're a little more Harkonnen than we are Atreides at varying intervals.
ErasOmnius wrote:Can't find it on youtube, but I just saw a LOTR documentary on Netflix that compared Aragorn at the Battle of Helm's Deep, to Braveheart at the Battle near Sterling Castle. Seems a bit far-fetched.
The Battle of Helm's Deep is more a what-if scenario if the early English, the Anglo-Saxons under King Harold II, were able to effectively fight back against the Normans during the Battle of Hastings. Tolkien believed if the Anglo-Saxons had horses like the Normans, they would have won. Granted, most of the Battle of Helm's Deep involves keeping the attackers at bay behind fortification without much horse use, but I recall Sarumaun's Orcs get flanked by Gandalf and the rest of the Rohirrim cavalry.