Skip Navigation
InitialsDiceBear„Initials” ( by „DiceBear”, licensed under „CC0 1.0” (
Posts 0
Comments 302
Is it just me or do Lemmy communities tend to skew left wing? Why might this be?
  • Generally speaking, the statement "Tankies made the X face the wall" is true for all X. Anarchists, monarchists, fascists, capitalists, Mensheviks, Jews, Doctors, poets, authors, musicians, peasants, soldiers, factory workers, Marxists, Bolsheviks, wives and children of all of the above, and eventually even Stalinists.

  • Is it just me or do Lemmy communities tend to skew left wing? Why might this be?
  • Yes, the TLD belongs to Mali. But the reason why the creators of picked that TLD is because they're Marxists. They're also the creators of Lemmy itself, which is another reason why Lemmy communities tend to be pretty far left: the first instance was literally Marxist, and presumably most of the early users leaned in that direction.

  • Mother Gaia and Humans
  • Oh, don't get me wrong, I don't pickle everything I need for the winter. That's a shitload of work. I go to the grocery store and buy food like everybody else, and just try to make reasonable choices while I'm there.

    I just don't fume the whole time about how Safeway is destroying the planet, and suggesting that everything would be great if only they were gone. I deeply appreciate the fact that we've built such an incredibly efficient system of food distribution, and that I can get all the calories I need and more in the form of fresh fruit & veggies even in the middle of the winter, even if I also acknowledge that we really need to tweak it to reduce the damage it's causing.

    Point is, corporations aren't generating 99% of global emissions. We are producing 99% of global emissions, by choosing to buy mangos and pineapples from Whole Foods in January instead of pickling carrots and asparagus in September. You can't get rid of the corporations and then live off of tropical fruits without generating any CO₂.

    Also, for the record, my grandparents supported a family of 10, and they lived through the winter largely on pickled and canned foods. In the fall, all the wives would get together and pack vegetables into jars every weekend. That was already a huge improvement, because a lot of what they pickled came from the grocery store: their grandparents could only pickle what they could grow. There was a whole room in the basement full of pickles & canned food. It was totally doable then, and it's only gotten easier in the intervening decades.

  • Mother Gaia and Humans
  • But also corporations are also run by people with wants and not all of those decisions are being made with consideration of what the masses want anymore but what the people at the top want. More money, more of the profit share, more cheap labor.

    What the people at the top want is money, and the way to get it is by giving the masses what they want.

    I agree it results in weird incentives. But blaming corporations exclusively (which is a popular opinion these days) is beyond stupid. We need to acknowledge that we are the root of the problem. The solution to corporate abuses is just for us to make laws to reign them in. In the end, they're just an abstraction.

    I'm very suspicious about the motives of people who act like corporations are the only problem. Either they're incredibly naive, or they're just looking for an easy way to ease their own conscience.

  • Mother Gaia and Humans
  • You're seriously claiming that doing some pickling or salting in the fall is just too hard and expensive, when people have been doing it for millenia? Salt is under $1/lb in the US, and you can get next-day delivery of pickling jars to your doorstep. Your ancestors would be rolling on the floor laughing at you.

  • Mother Gaia and Humans
  • I'm not saying corporations are innocent. I'm saying they're doing what we demand.

    Corporations are just a bunch of people working together, seeking profit. That's it. They're not more moral than the people who work there--and if they're too moralistic they'll fail, because people aren't willing to buy their more expensive products.

    I have a lot of problems with corporations, how they're structured, the laws that apply to them (and more importantly, don't). But they're not the core problem, and blaming them is a cop-out. It stops us from taking responsibility, and in the end we're the program: corporations can't even exist unless we're enthusiastically buying and using their products.

  • Mother Gaia and Humans
  • I mean, here you go: reusable produce bags for you to bring with you to the store, provided by a corporation.

    Yes, milk in glass bottles is more expensive: those bottles are expensive to produce, heavy and delicate to transport, and they need a whole infrastructure to collect and return them to the plant. If we insisted on glass bottles instead of cardboard or plastic, things would be more expensive. The problem is that we, the customers are cheap motherfuckers and will, on aggregate, always go for the cheapest option. So that's what companies offer us. If the government banned single-use plastic or cardboard milk cartons, corporations would shrug their shoulders and offer that: they don't care, they make a profit either way, but as long as plastic is an option, corps know that's what we're going to buy because it's $1 that's what they offer us.

    Hell, the majority of the time you’re not even given a choice of what company you get that electricity from.

    Yeah, I'd be totally fine with the government finding ways to break up monopolies like this--including natural monopolies, like power and internet (where infrastructure requirements limit competition). Here's the thing, though: if hydro, wind and coal were all options, and coal was 20% cheaper, what would people pick? We're the problem. Luckily, we're getting close to solar being more efficient than any fossil fuel for power (thanks to greedy corporations rushing to develop the tech for sale).

    If I’m living paycheck to paycheck, there’s no way in fuck I’m buying solar panels, or collecting and processing my own rain water, or buying the expensive foodstuffs wrapped in the sustainable packaging.

    Right. And in a world where those were the only options, you'd eat less food or live in a smaller home. Making them the only options doesn't make them cheaper, and in some cases, where supply is limited, it will dramatically increase prices.

    You want to main exactly the same quality of life you have now, make no sacrifices, and for that to somehow be totally green and sustainable. That's not realistic.

    Blaming companies is lazy and self-serving. We're the problem. We've always been the problem. Corporations can't make minor adjustments, at no cost or inconvenience to us, and save the planet. That's ridiculous, and it's a self-serving myth, making them a scapegoat for our sins.

  • Mother Gaia and Humans
  • I don't know why, in these discussions, "it's all the fault of corporations!" is treated as though it was a serious argument.

    Corporations do one thing: they give us what we want. What we demand, a lot of the time. The fundamental problem is us, corporations are just the abstraction we use to fulfill our needs and desires. Before there were companies, people fought and scrambled for wealth and then displayed it as lavishly as possible, it's just that the means of acquiring and then using that wealth were different. Read up on Romans hosting banquets where slave boys were fed to eels for entertainment while guests fed on flamingos stuffed with hippo brains with a garnish of tiger testicles or whatever, or the Chinese or Indian or Mesoamerican equivalent, and then explain again how all our problems are due to modern corporations.

  • Making healthier choices
  • Not to mention, even if you can accurately measure calories in a specific serving, companies produce thousands and thousands of servings per day. They can't accurately measure all of them. And ironically, the more 'natural' the food is, the less accurately they can measure the nutritional value: protein paste is going to be a lot more predictable than pasture-raised chickens.

  • NEW JOB!
  • Hi Tom,

    I was just taking a look at your resume, and your experience at Deceased really caught my eye! I'm especially interested in your knowledge of being missed by friends and family. Did you know that complications from heart surgery is in high demand right now?

    I'm a head hunter looking for dynamic individuals who are interested in positions at an exciting new startup, and I think you'd be a perfect fit!

    I hope we get a chance to chat soon!

  • Finally beat cancer
  • Haha, that escalated quickly. "You don't want a one-time forgiveness of student loans for a particular batch of students which does nothing to solve the systemic issues leading to skyrocketing education costs? Clearly you just hate students and want to kill them and probably eat them!!&!&"

    Let me guess: you have a student loan. Well, I'd be okay with forgiving it, after we take care of the core problems so we don't end up right back here again in 15-20 more years. And I'd be willing to bet than by that time, after your loan is forgiven and you start stacking cash, you'll suddenly see the big picture and be firmly on the other side of the issue. You don't strike me as a terribly warm and empathetic person.

    You decided that the financial expense of saving a life is worth condemning a patient to death

    Yes. And if you have $10 in your pocket, you prioritized your own well-being over people dying from hunger, war or disease. If you drive any car other than a Mercedes Benz C Class (apparently the safest car ATM) then you prioritized other factors (cost, style, whatever) over your own safety. Oh what, you "can't afford" a C Class? Don't tell me you're prioritizing other things (having a home bigger than the back seat of a Mercedes Benz C Class, eating good food, wearing something other than sack cloth) over your own safety? Statistically, you're condemning yourself to a shorter life expectancy by misallocating your resources!

    But really, by your logic, what you should be doing is selling your house, your car, your shoes and whatever you typed this message on, and donating all the proceeds to the GoFundMe for John Doe in Birmingham Alabama, so I guess that's beside the point.

    We live in a real world. Suggesting that we can never compromise our principles by allowing any person to die from a fatal disease is just ridiculously naive. And taking a stand on your silly and unrealistic principles to conceal the fact that you just really want a cash handout is sleezy as hell.

    You should be ashamed of yourself.

    I'm not.

    But whether you are or not, I’m not interested in debating with you.

    Then you definitely don't have to reply.

  • Finally beat cancer
  • Sure, once it becomes clear that students being debt-free on graduation is a benefit to society, I'm sure voters will scramble to wipe out student debt! That's why baby boomers, who graduated with very little debt, are such staunch opponents of heavy student loans! /s

    Once the pressure is off millennials and gen z, you'll be able to watch the issue drop right out of public discourse. The focus will shift to housing costs, or health care, or some other topic that directly affects them. That's just how politics works, especially in the US, where the constant gridlock in congress means that things only get done in a crisis. If you think we young people are just better than the boomers, and we wouldn't forget to go back and fix the root causes even though we're not immediately affected're in for disappointment.

    If the goal is to help young people graduate with less debt, randomly forgiving large loans has got to be the worst possible approach. That only encourages educational costs to rise, and encourages students to take on ridiculous debts, and thus ends up transferring taxpayer money directly to schools and banks--and the more outrageous the loans and charges of those schools & banks, the more taxpayer money they get. That is legitimately a crazy way to solve the problem! As I said, it's like giving a drug addict a bunch of heroin. Surely these businesses won't want even more money, right?

    So what do you do instead? Well, just off the top of my head: cap student loans. That's what Canada does. I applied for a student loan when I went to school there, and I didn't get to pick an amount. Based on where I was living and the school I was planning to go to, the government just said: "Okay, here's $N". It wasn't that much, something like $6k per term (in the late 00's).

    Since students in that case won't have access to arbitrary bags of cash, schools that actually want students will have to, you know, lower prices and compete. So my tuition was something like $4-5k per year, not $20k or $80k. I graduated with something like $50k in debt, which I paid off in a few years.

    That would be a reasonable first step. Do that first, while you've got the political support, and then forgive student loans. Don't do that first!

  • Finally beat cancer
  • Why on earth do you think I'm arguing in bad faith? What do you think my real beliefs & agenda are? Do you know what arguing in bad faith means?

    “Sorry about your cancer. We have to let you die so maybe cancer researchers will be motivated to try harder for a permanent cure.”

    If the US poured it's full resources into saving John Doe from Birmingham Alabama, who has cancer, they could probably do it. Of course, then those resources (cash, equipment, researchers & doctors) couldn't be used to help other people, or to perform research towards an eventual cure for everybody. It would be a bad use of resources, right?

    You don't let John Doe die because you want his death to motivate researchers. But you only have a certain amount of resources, and you have to allocate them in a way that makes sense, and pouring everything into a temporary solution that only affect this one dude (or one batch of student loan recipients) at the cost of a long-term, permanent solution to the root causes of the issue is just...a bad idea.

  • Finally beat cancer
  • Imagine if researchers said: We're working on a cure for cancer, and in the process we've generated a bunch of unobtanium. We can use it as a one-time cure for a bunch of current cancer patients, or we can use it to continue further research towards a permanent, universally-available cure. Obviously, if we use it all up now, we'll be back to square one and have to start generating it again before we can work on a long-term cure. Which would you pick?

    "Unobtanium" is political will. If we just do a round of bailouts for current loan-holders instead of addressing the root cause of spiraling education costs, we're just kicking the can down the road. The pressure will be off, a whole generation of 20- and 30-somethings will lose interest in the issue, and it'll fall off the political radar for another few decades, by which time GenZ+ will be well and truly fucked, since educational costs are only going up and up.

    The absolute worst way to address rising education costs is to encourage a bunch of students to take ridiculously large loans and then wipe them off the books. That means: 1) schools can raise prices to the roof because they know students have access to mountains of cash from loans, and 2) students won't hesitate to take the loans because they'll probably just be forgiven eventually. Probably. Maybe. Or maybe it'll be a millstone around their neck for the rest of their lives...but hey, what choice do they have, that's just what school costs (because governments make sure students have all the money they need for a bidding war to get in).

    So it amounts to just transferring huge piles of taxpayer money directly to overpriced schools and predatory banks, with no plan to stem the flow. It's like trying to help your drug-addicted friend recover with a one-time gift of a brick of heroin. They'll feel great for a while, and they'll love you for it while it lasts, but it's only going to make the problem much worse in the long run.

  • The corporate boot licking of Google after firing the palestine protestors in insane
  • Makes it easy to dismiss my argument without bothering to think about it, you mean. Just take abortion, then. Or "tax is theft", or right to bear arms, or any of a thousand other beliefs you probably don't agree with.