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Old 17.06.2017, 23:26
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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Oh come on - I am sure you have surely met some 1st year undergrads who could barely hold ANY argument - you've got a few extra years of maturity on me but they were still some there when even i was at Uni.


You do me too much credit sir ! I never intend to make you look silly - my intent was to point to the rather obvious flaw in your argument.
As a matter of fact, I know a few Piled High and Deeps who still can't debate (or think) their way out of a rudimentary puzzle.

But they were in a different debating club.

(You'll have noticed that I very rarely use terms like "all", "any", or "every" this isn't by chance, they are best left to the domains of logic and mathematics. I let my guard down, and used a universal. Shoot me, I'm human(oid).
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Old 17.06.2017, 23:33
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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As a matter of fact, I know a few Piled High and Deeps who still can't debate (or think) their way out of a rudimentary puzzle.

But they were in a different debating club.

(You'll have noticed that I very rarely use terms like "all", "any", or "every" this isn't by chance, they are best left to the domains of logic and mathematics. I let my guard down, and used a universal. Shoot me, I'm human(oid).
You are correct - I did notice - and it did surprise me when you let the guard down - even more odd was the emphasis "every single". I'm a mathematician (ok ok I also started out as an engineer) - but I have observed that statistical truth is the best one for a society as a whole , and indeed most private organisations. I agree wholeheartedly with your sentiment - as usual.

Also major kudos for humility - very very few of us have that.

Last edited by parnell; 17.06.2017 at 23:37. Reason: humility comment
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  #283  
Old 17.06.2017, 23:41
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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You are correct - I did notice - and it did surprise me when you let the guard down - even more odd was the emphasis "every single". I'm a mathematician (ok ok I also started out as an engineer) - but I have observed that statistical truth is the best one for a society as a whole , and indeed most private organisations. I agree wholeheartedly with your sentiment - as usual.
It's a cheap out, but I did begin the sentences with the universals with "perhaps", which is pretty damned close to statistics.

One of the guys I studied with used to start almost every lemma with "Insofar as logic holds true,"... There are three kinds of philosophy students: Annoying twats, really annoying twats, and the ones who read the texts (not my words - they are from one of my profs).
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Old 17.06.2017, 23:49
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I don't see how migrants, unwed mothers, school leavers, unemployed, layabouts, criminals, illegal immigrants, legal immigrants, foreign students, or any other human being somehow "deserves" to die in a building fire, or that the loss of any life through corporate, municipal, federal, or man with a van negligence, greed, lack of foresight, or any other preventable cause is somehow acceptable.

Perhaps I'm too much of an engineer to understand how a machine like a building would not be built, maintained, or renovated to ensure that the people who live within are not at mortal risk from the building itself.

Perhaps I'm too much of a humanist to let go of the fundamental truth that every single human life is as valuable as the next.
Quite so, JW. Unfortunately not everyone thinks the way you do, as confirmed by this forum over and over again. I
I really don't want to know what these people would do if they had enough power.

I'll get my coat now, it's all really nauseating.
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Old 18.06.2017, 00:21
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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You may wish to escape reality but you cannot escape the consequences of escaping reality - Ayn Rand.
I once read that the two authors most likely to push an adolescent mind to either the Left or Right are JRR Tolkein and Ayn Rand respectively.

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Old 18.06.2017, 01:20
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I once read that the two authors most likely to push an adolescent mind to either the Left or Right are JRR Tolkein and Ayn Rand respectively.

I read 'The Hobbit' at 11 and 'Lord of the Rings' at 13. I'd never heard of Ayn Rand until a few months ago on this forum. Honestly.
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Old 18.06.2017, 04:25
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I disagree that improving the look of the building and the area has no benefits for those living there.

More important, neither of us knows the ins and outs of the renovation, but my understanding is that the project included a lot of internal work as well as the controversial cladding. I wasn't aware that the cladding was insisted-on by the rich neighbours -- I'll take your word for that -- but my point stands, that it can be done well or badly, and is no excuse to have a swide-swipe, implying that the wealthier folk were somehow to blame for this appalling incident. Not a single one of them would have wished for work so substandard that there was any risk of this happening. Not one.
We will have to agree to disagree.

I believe that there were complaints about the aesthetics and it cost a shameful amount to alter - it was certainly reported as such on the Beeb. I didn't imply the neighbours were to blame, I said the money would have been better spent on something else and the very fact that there were complaints about the look of the thing rather than anything else is a terrible thing. IMO. Kensington and Chelsea is a mix of the wealthiest and the poorest citizens.


I'm just catching up with this thread and I can't remember which P suggested that the "violent" (it didn't look all that violent) protest was fuelled by a desire for more benefits. I got the distinct impression they were mostly running on exhaustion, grief and rage.

I'd never heard of Ayn Rand either (have just Googled her and oh boy). I think I prefer Tolkien.

Last edited by RufusB; 18.06.2017 at 04:38. Reason: Caught up.
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  #288  
Old 18.06.2017, 09:42
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I once read that the two authors most likely to push an adolescent mind to either the Left or Right are JRR Tolkein and Ayn Rand respectively.

I once read that profiling people according to the books they read is inaccurate. Orwell would agree, or his "thoughtpolice" concept. Where would anti-harrypotter club belong to..We cannot even assume an adolescent mind is likely to be pushed anywhere, especially by what is on the market. They are pretty good without the "help", pushing themselves where they fancy, at any particular moment and in the way we probably learn about a decade latter. I read a lot of beatnics and disliked them yet everybody thought my belief system must be a direct result of Gingsberg, Keruac and their cronies. It is fun to objectively and positively teach about a popular trend one disagrees with. Not blurt out "the form/method is great, the content less so, bunch of hedonistic bums". The hedonism and introspection was revolutionary, yet they blew it, egocentrically.
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  #289  
Old 18.06.2017, 10:02
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I once read that profiling people according to the books they read is inaccurate.
I suspect that the only two books that I've never heard described as a threat to young minds, or society, would have to be Machinery's Handbook, and the CRC manual.

Which is really odd, as between the two they've everything you need to know to make a bomb. (Just believe me... I'll take the 5th amendment on explaining how I know this.)
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Old 18.06.2017, 10:26
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I once read that the two authors most likely to push an adolescent mind to either the Left or Right are JRR Tolkein and Ayn Rand respectively.

I'm not a disciple of either of those authors - although I find elements of truth in their works of fiction. I also find that elements of Karl Marx's writings (particularly in relation to rent seeking) to be bang on the money. When I care particularly to read about how a society should care about it's overall well being however I turn to economists - Milton Friedman before all of them.
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Old 18.06.2017, 10:39
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I once read that profiling people according to the books they read is inaccurate. Orwell would agree, or his "thoughtpolice" concept. Where would anti-harrypotter club belong to..We cannot even assume an adolescent mind is likely to be pushed anywhere, especially by what is on the market. They are pretty good without the "help", pushing themselves where they fancy, at any particular moment and in the way we probably learn about a decade latter. I read a lot of beatnics and disliked them yet everybody thought my belief system must be a direct result of Gingsberg, Keruac and their cronies. It is fun to objectively and positively teach about a popular trend one disagrees with. Not blurt out "the form/method is great, the content less so, bunch of hedonistic bums". The hedonism and itrospection was revolutionary, yet they blew it, egocentrically.
Isn't it entirely healthy that a young mind is stretched in every direction ?? Having said that what could be perceived as dangerous is that a particular section of society reaches for a certain tome and says that "this is the only truth there is" - particularly a work of fiction - and procedes to execute based on writings in that tome. Say Mein Kampf (which I've not yet read but will give a bash at some stage no doubt) ?

Only a lazy mind refutes criticism and challenge and if I may so that's part of the problem (as I see it) with modern day Islam - you have a tiny minority who wish to reform it from within - and a huge section seem to believe that any challenge to their book deserves violent response.

What suppresses this further are of course the "educated" apologists for the violent crowd...
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Old 18.06.2017, 10:47
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I once read that the two authors most likely to push an adolescent mind to either the Left or Right are JRR Tolkein and Ayn Rand respectively.

I read both as an adolescent, along with a number of others. I found parts of the Fountainhead appealing, likewise the Hobbit. As I grew older, I found Ayn Rand less appealing and more adolescent, and that ridiculous, turgid "atlas shrugged" put me off her.

But adolescents need to read from varied sources, and cultures. I hope these kids are exposed to more than just Rand and Tolkein. You often learn more from stuff you disagree with....breaking down confirmation bias and so on.

Must be harder to read now as a kid with so many screens and distractions. Is it?

But I'm left leaning for sure. And EF helps me stay that way, thank you.
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Old 18.06.2017, 10:50
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

One of the disturbing aspects of this tragedy and others is a pervasive and at times disgusting blame culture.

Even as the building burned with people still trapped alive, TV crews are on site, shoving microphones in the faces of desperately distraught people, clearly in shock.

Investigating what happened will take years. Not just because it is complex, but because so many organisations and companies will spend vast amounts of money and time covering their arses, pointing the finger at others, denying responsibility and refusing take ownership due to a fear of criticism or prosecution.

No-one will win apart from opportunistic politicians, lawyers and reputation management consultancies.

Yes. This might be inevitable. Now is not the time to allocate blame.

If we want to prevent a repeat of this tragedy, we must seek to understand, not seek to be the loudest voice in the room.

This may sound hideous to some; in my view a truth and reconciliation approach to the inquiry will give restorative, rather than retributive justice.
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Old 18.06.2017, 11:00
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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This may sound hideous to some; in my view a truth and reconciliation approach to the inquiry will give restorative, rather than retributive justice.
I think the main priorties should be preventing future occurrences. Maybe actually stop sitting on previous reports, enquiries and calls could be acted on now.
And if there is criminal negligence, those guilty should be held responsible, as they are guilty of manslaughter.
Truth and reconciliation works only when the situation is over (portugal, south africa) not when there are still people being treated the same way.
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Old 18.06.2017, 11:19
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I read 'The Hobbit' at 11 and 'Lord of the Rings' at 13. I'd never heard of Ayn Rand until a few months ago on this forum. Honestly.
I've heard of both, and read neither.

I've seen films of both, however.

Tom
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Old 18.06.2017, 11:47
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We cannot even assume an adolescent mind is likely to be pushed anywhere, especially by what is on the market.
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Isn't it entirely healthy that a young mind is stretched in every direction ??
Indeed it is stretched and in directions we fail to provide or directions we judge especially inappropriate. Adolescents are easily and fiercefully sufficient in seaking their own influences, beatnics were/are laughed at. I said that a mind of an ado is unlikely to go where we would like to see it. It is the opposite in fact and I am glad they trust us so little so do their own quest. It is naieve to think that the books easily available on the market are actually those with the biggest impact on teens. Hence the appeal of some stuff we consider harmful or potentially radicalizing. We will get it when we stop being busy and happy with ego pleasing theoretizing and figuring out the best details our descriptive narratives. And when we leave emotions for later, lol, that's the trick teens are fighting with. It is foolish to still have the same dilemma/doublethink decades later.

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One of the disturbing aspects of this tragedy and others is a pervasive and at times disgusting blame culture.

Even as the building burned with people still trapped alive, TV crews are on site, shoving microphones in the faces of desperately distraught people, clearly in shock.

Investigating what happened will take years. Not just because it is complex, but because so many organisations and companies will spend vast amounts of money and time covering their arses, pointing the finger at others, denying responsibility and refusing take ownership due to a fear of criticism or prosecution.

No-one will win apart from opportunistic politicians, lawyers and reputation management consultancies.

Yes. This might be inevitable. Now is not the time to allocate blame.

If we want to prevent a repeat of this tragedy, we must seek to understand, not seek to be the loudest voice in the room.

This may sound hideous to some; in my view a truth and reconciliation approach to the inquiry will give restorative, rather than retributive justice.
Blame culture - cheap and quick emotions, reflexes ready to respond to manipulation. People are obviously trying to saturate certain needs.
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Last edited by MusicChick; 18.06.2017 at 12:05. Reason: merging myself
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Old 18.06.2017, 12:10
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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One of the disturbing aspects of this tragedy and others is a pervasive and at times disgusting blame culture.

Even as the building burned with people still trapped alive, TV crews are on site, shoving microphones in the faces of desperately distraught people, clearly in shock.
I was reading today and in the last days how this tragedy compared to 9/11, today I read (in quite a good paper) that this was Britain's 9/11 but the difference between 9/11 and Grenfell Tower is that so many children and babies were in that building and no-one could get them out fast enough. They perished in front of people's eyes and no-one has talked much about any psychological assistance for the survivors, as you say, they were just used as press bait for the most part.

I think for many reasons people these days are numb to the sensibilities of others, with an abundance of news available to them from different perspectives people are making up their minds how they react without any thought for others at all.

The fact for me is simple, sometimes I feel a little guilty when I read terrible things humans are doing in the world today but then I distance my feelings, what can I do about it? The Grenfell Tower tragedy though haunts me on a daily basis at the moment. This should never have happened. It is a terrible tragedy in which no-one should have perished let alone all the children we'll come to learn died of the most awful deaths imaginable.

This is a public forum, I must say I am very disappointed when I read back 2 posts from just 2 posters who in my opinion, should apologize for what they wrote. That's all it would take, a short apology to make most of us feel a whole lot better about who we mix with on this forum...
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Old 18.06.2017, 12:11
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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I suspect that the only two books that I've never heard described as a threat to young minds, or society, would have to be Machinery's Handbook, and the CRC manual.
Now there's a good point, and one I can relate to.

With the notable exceptions of James Ellroy, Shakespeare, Thomas Harris and Stieg Larsson, I don't read fiction. I simply don't have the patience for filling my head with made up fluff, and I'm a very visually biased person. Having recently donated a few hundred books to a community library, it struck me that the vast majority were technical manuals, travel books and biographies.

I'd love to know which book made me left wing. The 1968 Morris Minor Traveller 1098cc Haynes Manual or my atlas.

EDIT: Just told my voracious reader OH about this section of the thread. He's read Fountainhead and read Atlas Shrugged twice, and he's never read any Tolkein, yet he's one of the most left wing people I know. His dad spent 4yrs in a concentration camp for being a member of the Greek left wing group EPON, and he holds a lot of his father's beliefs.
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Old 18.06.2017, 12:15
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

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Now there's a good point, and one I can relate to.

With the notable exceptions of James Ellroy, Shakespeare, Thomas Harris and Stieg Larsson, I don't read fiction. I simply don't have the patience for filling my head with made up fluff, and I'm a very visually biased person. Having recently donated a few hundred books to a community library, it struck me that the vast majority were technical manuals, travel books and biographies.

I'd love to know which book made me left wing. The 1968 Morris Minor Traveller 1098cc Haynes Manual or my atlas.
It was probably music.

People contribute too much to written word and ignore the rest of life.

If you ask teens if they read - they rarely do. Ask them if they listen to music every day. It is not just the technicalities of visual/language processing, but they know school puts too much emphasis on written input and ignores other, rich stimuli.
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Old 18.06.2017, 12:23
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Re: London Tower Block Fire

I think due to bias from the media and educational institutions most apolitical people are generally left wing - until they wake up and smell the coffee.
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