Contemporary threats to free speech

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Sam Vara
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:27 pm

Mr Man wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 10:47 am

Because it is not true that the there is such a thing as "thought crimes" in UK law and I am pretty sure that you would know that. If there is no action there is no crime.
That's a big improvement. You have avoided personalising the issue and giving in to abuse. That's commendable.

There can never be crimes which consist of thinking alone, without some form of expression of that thought. But that's not what "thought crimes" means outside of a narrow science fiction brain-scan scenario. That's not what Orwell meant when he coined the phrase.

What it means here is that actions which would otherwise be legal are increasingly criminalised because of the determination of the thoughts behind them by the police and other agencies. As the tweet says,
"Though what the perpetrator has done may not be against the law, their reasons for doing it are".

This means that the only component of an intentional act which attracts the attention of the police is the thought behind it. In Retro's example, posting a clip of a pug raising its paw is legal, until the police judge that you had intent that they disapprove of. The same applies to the famous "Fawlty Towers" scene where Cleese does Nazi salutes. If someone posted a clip of themselves doing something similar, the police could make a judgement as to whether their intention was good, or bad. They are looking at (more precisely, trying to determine) the thoughts behind the action, not merely the action. That's very different from the principle of mens rea, which only looks at the intentions behind and understanding of an action which is otherwise clearly criminal.

Similarly, police questioning 10 year old schoolboys because of misspelling or requesting where the prayer room is, involves someone (a teacher, in both cases) making a judgement about their intentions. The 2015 Act requires teachers to do this. Or the case of this man:
https://semipartisansam.com/2016/03/24 ... r-attacks/
who merely asked a Muslim to account for the terrorism of her co-religionists. Doing this in the context of a debate about Muslims used to be perfectly acceptable, but someone has decided that his intentions were of a kind they don't like.

This is what I mean by "thought crime"; not that Her Majesty's Government table Bills with the actual term in the title or preamble, or that your local constabulary have a thought-detector van patrolling your streets. There is a great deal more of this concentration upon thoughts and attitudes than there has been in my lifetime, which is why I think it a retrograde step.

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Mr Man
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:53 pm

Keep blowing your smoke and trying to justify your dishonesty. Here is what a barrister says -
The Met’s website seems to presuppose the existence of an entirely novel type of criminal offence: a crime which requires only a guilty mind, mens rea but not actus reus. If such an offence existed then “thought-crime” would be a very good description of it. But of course it doesn’t.
http://barristerblogger.com/2018/03/18/ ... #more-2507

--
Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:27 pm

This is what I mean by "thought crime"; not that Her Majesty's Government table Bills with the actual term in the title or preamble, or that your local constabulary have a thought-detector van patrolling your streets.
You are being disingenuous. This is what you wrote + remember the context of your post - you were referring to the text from the Met Police website (which has now been changed https://www.met.police.uk/advice-and-in ... ate-crime/) -
Sam Vara wrote:
Sun Mar 18, 2018 12:37 pm

One hopes that the police statement is wrong due to the mangled English and poverty of expression that afflicts many British police officers. But sadly, I don't think it is. The country of Milton, Locke, and Mill has (depending on your local police force) thought crimes.
You chose to put forward that thought crime exists in the UK rather than except that it was "mangled English and poverty of expression".

You chose to perpetuate that which is not true.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by binocular » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:09 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:03 pm
That might happen, but doesn't have to. There is a clear theological distinction between those people who believe that God divinely ordains laws by means of kings and judges, and those (mainly Protestant) who think that the radical nature of the gospel message entitles them to challenge and overthrow those kings and judges. If by "theistic authoritarian systems" you mean Catholic autocracies, then sure. Otherwise not.
I find it hard to see this. I mean, I suppose it is as you say, it's just a foreign perspective to me.
In Buddhist and Hindu cultures, there exist folk and some more serious conceptions about what karmic consequences follow for what action. Something like "karmic concordance charts" ("If you do X, you will get karmic consequences Y"). And some people elevate those conceptions almost to the level of law, seeeing themselves as arbiters and enacters of other people's karma ("You did such and such, therefore, I can do such and such to you, and I will be guiltfree for doing so").
Maybe, but I've not got any experience of this. Buddhist and Hindu countries seem to have fairly secular legal systems that work pretty much as Western ones do. Again, it's possible, but I doubt if Indian or Thai judges think this way.
Like I said, some people elevate those conceptions almost to the level of law; not that they are made into laws in any formal capacity. For example, in the way some individuals treat others poorly, on account that it is "their karma to be treated that way".
I don't think so. I got the impression from Japanese friends that Japanese society allows one to think and do almost anything, providing you just "play the game" and maintain the image.
I would think that here, that would be regarded as reprehensible fakery. (I would say we don't think the Japanese are fakers in any way; I think we're quite mystified by them -- IOW, don't understand them, but because they seem rather classy, we're less likely to make negative assumptions about them.)
The thoughts and ideas of other people are their own concern, providing they don't infringe my rights. I think the difference is beween hypocrisy (which consists of professing one standard while never intending to live up to it) and the unconcern with other people's morality providing they don't bother other people.

I think that here, those two are still one and the same.
I think we have always had a sense that it is important for everyone to maintain social cohesion in thought, word, and deed, and that was the same under Catholic rule and in the communist/socialist variant we had here, and the (Christian) capitalist we have now. It's not so much in particular about controlling others, but about maintaining an image of a unified, unanimous nation, or culture. And one should never rock the boat, in any way.
You did have something like McCarthyism in the U.K. in the 20th century too, didn't you?
No. There were no mass accusations, and the worst that happened was that during the Cold War the secret services monitored the actions of Communists and Soviet "fellow travellers". I have friends who grew up in Communist families during the 1950s. There was a fascinating network of Jewish communist intellectuals across North London and elsewhere, and it all seems like jolly middle-class fun. Communist summmer camps, Russian songs, "Ban the Bomb" marches, and Daddy lecturing on the evils of capitalism over the tea and sandwiches.
Aww!


Anyway, from where I come from, it makes complete sense to introduce the category of thought crimes as suggested earlier. I don't personally agree with it, but in a society very much invested in social cohesion, it makes sense that such a category exists and is legally enforced.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by binocular » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:21 pm

P.S.
As for Japanese culture: It's sort of en vogue here because Slovenia is part of a project of promoting Japan. Who on earth thought that Japan needs promoting is beyond me. But now on national tv, we have a Japanese soap opera every day; tourist infomercials about Japan, mostly about what places to visit, what foods to eat, and what trinkets to buy, all explained by an über exuberant female Japanese voice; and other documentaries about Japan. I've seen some; I'm not any closer to understanding Japanese culture.

:focus:
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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Sam Vara
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:49 pm

binocular wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:09 pm

I find it hard to see this. I mean, I suppose it is as you say, it's just a foreign perspective to me.
Understood. Once you believe that you have the possibility of understanding God, then earthly powers don't really amount to much. Our regicide in 1649 was a good example of this.

Anyway, from where I come from, it makes complete sense to introduce the category of thought crimes as suggested earlier. I don't personally agree with it, but in a society very much invested in social cohesion, it makes sense that such a category exists and is legally enforced.

Yes, my fear is that this will soon be extended to the UK, hence my original point; and hence, incidentally, my opposition to the UK remaining in the EU. The complexity of societies is likely to require ever-increasing social control, and it makes sense for managers to eradicate undesirable thoughts because it's more efficient than eradicating the problems they will give rise to. It's about avoiding dystopias.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:58 pm

Mr Man wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:53 pm
Keep blowing your smoke and trying to justify your dishonesty...You chose to perpetuate that which is not true.
Oh, dear, you've spoilt it now by returning to personal abuse and attribution of motive. So you're back on short replies, so as not to waste my time.

I'm not dishonest, the barrister agrees with me, the (original) Met website and many other police practices, plus some statutes, convince me that there are thought crimes in the UK. In thinking that I'm being disingenuous or lying you are wrong.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Wed Mar 21, 2018 2:31 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:58 pm
Mr Man wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:53 pm
Keep blowing your smoke and trying to justify your dishonesty...You chose to perpetuate that which is not true.
Oh, dear, you've spoilt it now by returning to personal abuse and attribution of motive. So you're back on short replies, so as not to waste my time.
Spare me please.

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:58 pm
I'm not dishonest, the barrister agrees with me, the (original) Met website and many other police practices, plus some statutes, convince me that there are thought crimes in the UK. In thinking that I'm being disingenuous or lying you are wrong.
You are lying again. The barrister does not agree with you. You said
Sam Vara wrote:
Sun Mar 18, 2018 12:37 pm
The country of Milton, Locke, and Mill has (depending on your local police force) thought crimes.
And then from the barrister

The Met’s website seems to presuppose the existence of an entirely novel type of criminal offence: a crime which requires only a guilty mind, mens rea but not actus reus. If such an offence existed then “thought-crime” would be a very good description of it. But of course it doesn’t.
It should be obvious now that whatever the Met’s gobbledegook may mean, this is nonsense. There is no offence of having an unlawful reason for doing something. Thought-crime does not exist in English law.
Can you spot the difference?

Now wriggle all you like, try and move the goal posts, blow more smoke.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:26 pm

Mr Man wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 2:31 pm
Spare me please.
Do you spare people from personalised attacks and abuse? Until such time as you do, I won't spare you from gentle reminders to desist.

If you want to discuss the issues, please state what they are without giving in to the temptation to call people liars. Until then, you are, as I say, restricted to short answers from me.

I believe I am right, and that you are mistaken.

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retrofuturist
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:14 am

Greetings,

Twitter CEO Endorses Leftist Blueprint To Drive Conservatives From Public Life
What we are seeing here is a mask coming off, a social media titan vowing that his agenda is to eliminate an entire side of the political spectrum, and Twitter finally admitting that it's an operation all about actively promoting left-wingery, as the continuous bans and shadow-bans of conservatives show. All of this calls into question whether Twitter should be as unregulated as the Silicon Valley elite insists.
Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by chownah » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:01 am

Retrofuturist offers a link to Zero Hedge.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero_Hedge

A comment from a former writer for them:
Former Zero Hedge writer Colin Lokey said that he was pressured to frame issues in a way he felt was "disingenuous," summarizing its political stances as "Russia=good. Obama=idiot. Bashar al-Assad=benevolent leader. John Kerry=dunce. Vladimir Putin=greatest leader in the history of statecraft." Zero Hedge founder Daniel Ivandjiiski, in response, said that Lokey could write "anything and everything he wanted directly without anyone writing over it."[20] On leaving, Lokey said: "I can't be a 24-hour cheerleader for Hezbollah, Moscow, Tehran, Beijing, and Trump anymore. It's wrong. Period. I know it gets you views now, but it will kill your brand over the long run. This isn't a revolution. It's a joke."[2]
I just brought this one excerpt because as a former writer his views might be the most credible.....there is lots of other stuff in the wikipedia article which casts serious doubts about the website and the operater's credibility.

I would avoid going to their website as this would only offer them support since the number of visits to a website is what encourages (or discourages) people in giving them money.

chownah

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:15 pm

Greetings,



(Click blue bird to see full tweet and the tweet it's referencing)

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Mr Man
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:28 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:15 pm
Greetings,



(Click blue bird to see full tweet and the tweet it's referencing)

Metta,
Paul. :)

Are you cool with threatening behaviour towards hospital staff Paul? Do you think the right to threaten should be protected? Is it similar to the right to post racist content on a Buddhist forum?

Alfie Evans: Alder Hey Hospital defends staff against abuse

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-me ... e-43900571

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 25, 2018 11:50 pm

Greetings,
Mr Man wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:28 pm
Are you cool with threatening behaviour towards hospital staff Paul? Do you think the right to threaten should be protected?
Protests are fine.

Threats of violence, incitements of violence, and actual physical violence are not.

Having and expressing an opinion different to that of the authorities should be fine...

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Apr 26, 2018 7:07 am

Mr Man wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:28 pm
Do you think the right to threaten should be protected?
The right to threaten is the right of free speech, so of course it should be protected. There is not, and should never be, any right to carry out that threat. Except by the state - the state appropriates the right of violence to itself, on the basis of its capability to carry out that violence. Which is part of what makes the state fundamentally untrustworthy.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

'Some fart freely, some try to hide and silence it. Which one is correct?' - Saegnapha

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Mr Man
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:28 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 7:07 am
Mr Man wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:28 pm
Do you think the right to threaten should be protected?
The right to threaten is the right of free speech, so of course it should be protected.
So your cool with "highly abusive and threatening language and behavior" towards Hospital staff?
Alder Hey hospital staff are receiving threats and personal abuse from Alfie Evans supporters

http://metro.co.uk/2018/04/26/alder-hey ... s-7498592/

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