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The worm turns

pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
edited July 2019 in The cake stop
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S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
W - Wiggle Honda

"This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
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Posts

  • step83step83 Posts: 3,668
    I understand the hard hats, face masks and goggles (correct PPE for protesting/avoiding police batons and tear gas) but, whats with the umbrellas? It just makes them look like a load of middle class construction workers hiding from the rain.

    Edit, just realised its the Umbrella Movement popping up again.
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    Imagine a people harking back to the days of being a colony. A British one at that.
    What do the empire bashers think of this?
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 11,075
    pinno wrote:
    Imagine a people harking back to the days of being a colony. A British one at that.
    What do the empire bashers think of this?
    I wonder if they would be so keen when they find out that Brexiteers don't want them, except as colonised subjects to be used as and when.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    pblakeney wrote:
    pinno wrote:
    Imagine a people harking back to the days of being a colony. A British one at that.
    What do the empire bashers think of this?
    I wonder if they would be so keen when they find out that Brexiteers don't want them, except as colonised subjects to be used as and when.

    I just hope that with all the international attention on the situation, this affords the Cantonese some protection.
    This is the most direct and significant challenge to Chinese hegemony since Tiananmin.
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 11,075
    pinno wrote:
    pblakeney wrote:
    pinno wrote:
    Imagine a people harking back to the days of being a colony. A British one at that.
    What do the empire bashers think of this?
    I wonder if they would be so keen when they find out that Brexiteers don't want them, except as colonised subjects to be used as and when.

    I just hope that with all the international attention on the situation, this affords the Cantonese some protection.
    This is the most direct and significant challenge to Chinese hegemony since Tiananmin.
    I wish them all the luck in the World.
    I fear that they won't get it.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    pinno wrote:
    Imagine a people harking back to the days of being a colony. A British one at that.
    What do the empire bashers think of this?
    Given it was still British back in 1995, when a lot of the bad practices of colonisers past had been stamped out, you can see why people under threat of dracononian neo-communist rule would rather go back to an era, like in the '80s and '90s, where they had freedom of expression.

    I suspect they don't necessarily associate the flag with the opium wars or other colonial black spots (I'm not strong on Brits in Asia)
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    I suspect they don't necessarily associate the flag with the opium wars or other colonial black spots (I'm not strong on Brits in Asia)

    Do you think we should atone for those sins?
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • robert88robert88 Posts: 2,706
    pinno wrote:
    I suspect they don't necessarily associate the flag with the opium wars or other colonial black spots (I'm not strong on Brits in Asia)

    Do you think we should atone for those sins?

    We weren't alone in exploiting China. Some other countries were worse. We had some missionaries who did good stuff, e.g. China Inland Mission.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    pinno wrote:
    I suspect they don't necessarily associate the flag with the opium wars or other colonial black spots (I'm not strong on Brits in Asia)

    Do you think we should atone for those sins?

    I wouldn’t know how.
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    pinno wrote:
    I suspect they don't necessarily associate the flag with the opium wars or other colonial black spots (I'm not strong on Brits in Asia)

    Do you think we should atone for those sins?

    I wouldn’t know how.

    You're suggesting we do?!
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    Who, me and you? Do what?
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    Who, me and you? Do what?
    :roll:
    pinno wrote:
    Do you think we should atone for those sins?
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    No I'm not personally going to atone for them.

    It would be good for the UK govt to formally recognise the damage the UK inflicted on its colonies as part of its colonial rule.

    I think that's sensible.

    It's not really important in the grand scheme of things and in reality it doesn't change much, but it would be symbolic, namely that it is a sign that those in power recognise historical facts, something they are currently showing little regard for.

    More broadly I think its important that as historians, professional historians, continue to examine the past, that people, nations, groups, whatever, recognise the things they discover, or uncover, or have re-evaluated.

    Just like we ought to pay attention to new developments in different sciences, social sciences, in technology etc, I think the same ought to apply to humanities. I think that's just good practice, and this I guess falls under that.
  • TheBigBeanTheBigBean Posts: 9,289

    More broadly I think its important that as historians, professional historians, continue to examine the past, that people, nations, groups, whatever, recognise the things they discover, or uncover, or have re-evaluated.

    Is it a historian's job to pass moral judgement? And if it is, should that judgement not consider views at the time, and what the alternatives were?

    For example, the Spanish colonisation of South America was far more barbaric than Britain's colonisation of Asia. It was also 200 years prior which is a long time for morals and standards to change, so is it relevant?
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    TheBigBean wrote:

    More broadly I think its important that as historians, professional historians, continue to examine the past, that people, nations, groups, whatever, recognise the things they discover, or uncover, or have re-evaluated.

    Is it a historian's job to pass moral judgement? And if it is, should that judgement not consider views at the time, and what the alternatives were?

    For example, the Spanish colonisation of South America was far more barbaric than Britain's colonisation of Asia. It was also 200 years prior which is a long time for morals and standards to change, so is it relevant?

    Not necessarily their job to pass moral judgment but general nastiness towards local populations tends to not be viewed positively, right?

    If it’s a fact that it happened most people will draw their own moral conclusion based on the fact.

    I’m happy to pass moral judgment on atrocities whenever they occur if I have the relevant context, and I don’t really see why no one else should. Doesn’t need to be the focus of historians unless there’s a good reason for it.

    Why shouldn’t the Spanish state acknowledge all of its history in its entirety, bad and good? I don’t see why the relevancy point is valid, other than it’s good practice to own up to all of one’s history, personal or collective.
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    I don't know where you draw the line.
    We can learn from history but we can't make judgement.

    In the grand scheme of things, had we not colonised these places, someone else would.

    Africa, parts of Asia and South America would have been brought kicking and screaming into the 20th century with our intervention or not. It was never going to be an easy transition. Many colonies were left with infrastructures, that in some places, are still being used today. For example, the railway network in India.
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    Mate you can not pass judgement on the holocausf or any other awful things for all I care.

    Most people will and do. Sometimes it suits their interest not to and we all have agendas.

    I spent a lot of time looking at it about a decade ago, reading a lot of source material etc and came to the conclusion that the entire concept of “civilising” places like Africa was, by the mid-to-late 19th century, deeply and fundamentally rooted in a very racist way of thinking about the world. This is not original thought. Many many others who are a lot more capable came to this conclusion.

    You can disagree and frankly I don’t care as I had professional validation that my work was well researched, argued and logical, and conducted in a thorough and rigorous manner that stands up to professional scrutiny.

    By all means disagree but I’m quite confident in my views on this, and I’ve tried to explain or to you before and you don’t really care for what I think, which is fine, as I don’t really care for yours.

    FWIW I’m saying this factually, not as a moral judgment.

    Next time you’re in London and I can give you my 15,000 words for you to read, but I doubt you care.

    My overall point is that stuff like attrocities were done by colonial nations like the Uk and they ought to recognise those, as factually they occurred.
    It’s not particularly vital or urgent but it’s just good practice.
  • morstarmorstar Posts: 2,819
    So, question...

    Were the boundaries of acceptable behaviour actually understood any differently in times gone by or was it just far easier to get away with things without being held to account.

    i.e. people always knew exploitation, slavery, whatever were bad but it was simply far less likely you'd be held to account.
  • crumbschiefcrumbschief Posts: 3,412
    Just all seems Phooey.
  • TheBigBeanTheBigBean Posts: 9,289
    TheBigBean wrote:

    More broadly I think its important that as historians, professional historians, continue to examine the past, that people, nations, groups, whatever, recognise the things they discover, or uncover, or have re-evaluated.

    Is it a historian's job to pass moral judgement? And if it is, should that judgement not consider views at the time, and what the alternatives were?

    For example, the Spanish colonisation of South America was far more barbaric than Britain's colonisation of Asia. It was also 200 years prior which is a long time for morals and standards to change, so is it relevant?

    Not necessarily their job to pass moral judgment but general nastiness towards local populations tends to not be viewed positively, right?

    If it’s a fact that it happened most people will draw their own moral conclusion based on the fact.

    I’m happy to pass moral judgment on atrocities whenever they occur if I have the relevant context, and I don’t really see why no one else should. Doesn’t need to be the focus of historians unless there’s a good reason for it.

    Why shouldn’t the Spanish state acknowledge all of its history in its entirety, bad and good? I don’t see why the relevancy point is valid, other than it’s good practice to own up to all of one’s history, personal or collective.

    The holocaust, slave trade etc. were all judged as morally bad at the time. My point is that comparing Spanish colonisation to British colonisation of Asia is not relevent because morals had advanced two hundred years by then. Comparing it to the treatment of American natives is more relevant, and on that basis it is probably a low scoring draw.

    Or to put it another way, I find it hard to believe that caning in schools was only banned in 1998 and rape within marriage in 1992. Or that Gina Ford has a best selling book. Morals change with time.
  • rjsterryrjsterry Posts: 16,927
    TheBigBean wrote:
    TheBigBean wrote:

    More broadly I think its important that as historians, professional historians, continue to examine the past, that people, nations, groups, whatever, recognise the things they discover, or uncover, or have re-evaluated.

    Is it a historian's job to pass moral judgement? And if it is, should that judgement not consider views at the time, and what the alternatives were?

    For example, the Spanish colonisation of South America was far more barbaric than Britain's colonisation of Asia. It was also 200 years prior which is a long time for morals and standards to change, so is it relevant?

    Not necessarily their job to pass moral judgment but general nastiness towards local populations tends to not be viewed positively, right?

    If it’s a fact that it happened most people will draw their own moral conclusion based on the fact.

    I’m happy to pass moral judgment on atrocities whenever they occur if I have the relevant context, and I don’t really see why no one else should. Doesn’t need to be the focus of historians unless there’s a good reason for it.

    Why shouldn’t the Spanish state acknowledge all of its history in its entirety, bad and good? I don’t see why the relevancy point is valid, other than it’s good practice to own up to all of one’s history, personal or collective.

    The holocaust, slave trade etc. were all judged as morally bad at the time. My point is that comparing Spanish colonisation to British colonisation of Asia is not relevent because morals had advanced two hundred years by then. Comparing it to the treatment of American natives is more relevant, and on that basis it is probably a low scoring draw.

    Or to put it another way, I find it hard to believe that caning in schools was only banned in 1998 and rape within marriage in 1992. Or that Gina Ford has a best selling book. Morals change with time.

    There's considerable overlap. Spanish control in the Americas lasted from 1492-1898. The British East India Company was formed in 1600 and British rule in India ended in 1947. England was exploiting parts of North and South America at exactly the same time as the Spanish so there are plenty of comparisons to draw if only to show the evolving methods and justifications for exploiting other countries and their people.
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    1980s BSA 10sp

    Liberal metropolitan, remoaner, traitor, "sympathiser", etc.
  • TheBigBeanTheBigBean Posts: 9,289
    rjsterry wrote:
    England was exploiting parts of North and South America at exactly the same time as the Spanish so there are plenty of comparisons to draw notwithstanding the different time periods.

    A point I even made in my post.

    I think you are arguing for the sake of it. The peak of the Spanish colonisation was the 15th and 16th centuries. Singapore was founded in 1819 around the time a lot of south America was gaining independence.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    TheBigBean wrote:
    TheBigBean wrote:

    More broadly I think its important that as historians, professional historians, continue to examine the past, that people, nations, groups, whatever, recognise the things they discover, or uncover, or have re-evaluated.

    Is it a historian's job to pass moral judgement? And if it is, should that judgement not consider views at the time, and what the alternatives were?

    For example, the Spanish colonisation of South America was far more barbaric than Britain's colonisation of Asia. It was also 200 years prior which is a long time for morals and standards to change, so is it relevant?

    Not necessarily their job to pass moral judgment but general nastiness towards local populations tends to not be viewed positively, right?

    If it’s a fact that it happened most people will draw their own moral conclusion based on the fact.

    I’m happy to pass moral judgment on atrocities whenever they occur if I have the relevant context, and I don’t really see why no one else should. Doesn’t need to be the focus of historians unless there’s a good reason for it.

    Why shouldn’t the Spanish state acknowledge all of its history in its entirety, bad and good? I don’t see why the relevancy point is valid, other than it’s good practice to own up to all of one’s history, personal or collective.

    The holocaust, slave trade etc. were all judged as morally bad at the time. My point is that comparing Spanish colonisation to British colonisation of Asia is not relevent because morals had advanced two hundred years by then. Comparing it to the treatment of American natives is more relevant, and on that basis it is probably a low scoring draw.

    Or to put it another way, I find it hard to believe that caning in schools was only banned in 1998 and rape within marriage in 1992. Or that Gina Ford has a best selling book. Morals change with time.

    Where was I comparing them?

    I don’t think scoring and comparing is all that useful.
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    Mate you can not pass judgement on the holocausf or any other awful things for all I care.

    How on earth do you manage to bring the Holocaust into every argument regarding Empire?! It wasn't a lot do do with Empire, it was one man's tyranny.
    It was one of the most awful atrocities of the 20th century.
    It was also recognised as an atrocity then. No one is arguing that it wasn't.
    It was the Allies who liberated the concentration camps.

    Churchill (1933), interestingly:

    “There is a danger of the odious conditions now ruling in Germany, being extended by conquest to Poland and another persecution and pogrom of Jews being begun in this new area.”

    How can you make the comparison with British Empire and the Holocaust?
    You are blurring the lines between the deliberate attempt to wipe a people out and the occupation of a foreign territory?

    So let's get back to Empire then.

    Where do you draw the line when it comes to who should apologise and who doesn't need to and how far back do you go?
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • TheBigBeanTheBigBean Posts: 9,289

    Where was I comparing them?

    I don’t think scoring and comparing is all that useful.

    To pass any sort of moral judgement you need to make a comparison to something.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    TheBigBean wrote:

    Where was I comparing them?

    I don’t think scoring and comparing is all that useful.

    To pass any sort of moral judgement you need to make a comparison to something.

    Really?
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    pinno wrote:
    Mate you can not pass judgement on the holocausf or any other awful things for all I care.

    How on earth do you manage to bring the Holocaust into every argument regarding Empire?! It wasn't a lot do do with Empire, it was one man's tyranny.
    It was one of the most awful atrocities of the 20th century.?
    pinno wrote:
    We can learn from history but we can't make judgement.
    .

    I’m just applying your logic to other parts of history.

    You’re not judging it? Or you are? Calling it an awful atrocity sounds rather like a judgment to me.
  • TheBigBeanTheBigBean Posts: 9,289
    TheBigBean wrote:

    Where was I comparing them?

    I don’t think scoring and comparing is all that useful.

    To pass any sort of moral judgement you need to make a comparison to something.

    Really?

    Yes really. The Romans probably thought decimation was pretty moral, after all, 90% got to live. Looking back and comparing with modern methods of discipline it looks a little harsh.
  • pinnopinno Posts: 38,221
    TheBigBean wrote:

    Where was I comparing them?

    I don’t think scoring and comparing is all that useful.

    To pass any sort of moral judgement you need to make a comparison to something.

    Really?

    Yes. Philosophically speaking but Rick has never grasped this.

    Is it not spurious to sit here and say that Empire was 'wrong'?
    Empire was part of the fabric and foreign policy of many countries throughout the millennia.
    At the time, no one then said that it was wrong or right, that never entered the equation.
    We are an island with a large population, we had a great navy and we fought the French and the Spanish and the Dutch and who ever and later on, the Germans. Had we not had an empire, we would have been over run by Germany, without the resources of the colonies and even our armies bolstered by many other than British men and women.

    Historically, it was occupy or be occupied. There's hardly a corner of the world that hasn't been occupied by some force at some point.
    It's by historical coincidence that we had the last great empire and we should apologise for it?!

    The argument about empire is frivolous in the context of what I have always maintained:

    The world has been taken over and is run by the tentacles of capitalism. There are finite resources which we are consuming at rate that is unsustainable, we are polluting the seas and and filling the atmosphere with carbon dioxide. The Empire that is the current form of capitalism has far more insidious consequence and ramification than any previous empire or probably, all of the previous empires combined.
    S - The Brazilian beach volleyball team
    W - Wiggle Honda

    "This year will be harder than last year. But that is good news; this year will be easier than next year."
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,744 Lives Here
    edited July 2019
    TheBigBean wrote:
    TheBigBean wrote:

    Where was I comparing them?

    I don’t think scoring and comparing is all that useful.

    To pass any sort of moral judgement you need to make a comparison to something.

    Really?

    Yes really. The Romans probably thought decimation was pretty moral, after all, 90% got to live. Looking back and comparing with modern methods of discipline it looks a little harsh.
    I just mean more compared to my own values, some of which you can draw out objectively and others you can’t.

    You take the context into account, sure, but I can still take my own view.

    Objectively genocides are bad, for example. That’s fairly constant. So’s things like rape.

    I don’t think that requires comparison.
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