Tim Cook responds to 'unacceptable' Apple Store racism incident, says it 'does not represent our val



  • Reply 101 of 107
    ronnronn Posts: 650member
    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

    This is by far the best site. I've looked at those other ones, and it's really a soiree of simpletons (no you can't use that lol). I appreciate a well written post no matter how wrong they are.

    The parachute jump it is indeed. Coney Island is one of my favorite places in the world. Such a mix of people, all races, all socioeconomic classes in one place to have a good time and do so amicably. Go to the kid's section and you'll see black, hispanic, hasidic Jewish, Russian, and Arab kids all on the same ride having a great time.

    It may be the best site, but that's not saying much given the racist, homophobic, xenophobic A-holes that are the loudest on all of these sites. And I find many of these posts aren't even close to being coherent, let alone well written. I loved debating conservatives in high school because at least they were coherent, thoughtful and willing to listen, even if they didn't change their minds. I guess I'm getting too old or conservatives of today are just too beyond help.


    I love the parachute jump and wish it was still active. Family members say it was a hoot back in the day. I love Coney Island and try to make it back there at least once a year. I attended John Dewey nearby and would often go to the beach since I had only a few classes the last half of my senior year. My parents were afraid of me attending because a Black transit worker was killed by a racist mob the summer before I started high school. I loved Dewey and we were a diverse group during a time when diversity was rare and even frowned upon. I had friends from all over New York and the world and we all got along. Even the conservatives.

  • Reply 102 of 107
    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

    1.Genocide is just a side effect of colonization

    Not as a rule.


    The wheat that exists today has been modified, and it is nothing like the wheat from years ago. The original wheat no longer exists.


    I remember years and years back when we had to give up a specific cultivar of banana thanks to a disease that only went after it. Our modern bananas are, well, less sweet and less banana-y, but they’re the best alternative we had at the time.


    Now, that wheat and those bananas HAVE to exist in a seed bank somewhere. Even if not that, their DNA’s preserved in some form. 

  • Reply 103 of 107
    hodarhodar Posts: 357member


    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

    There is a fascinating book called "Guns, Germs and Steel: The fate of Human Societies" that goes into this.


    “Fascinating” in that it’s utterly astonishing just how incorrect it is. Diamond has no clue what he’s talking about.

    And yet, the reviews say quite the opposite.

    "Guns, Germs and Steel won the 1997 Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science.[8] In 1998, it won the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction, in recognition of its powerful synthesis of many disciplines, and the Royal Society's Rhône-Poulenc Prize for Science Books.[9][10] The National Geographic Society produced a documentary of the same title based on the book that was broadcast on PBS in July 2005.[1]"


    and as for critiques

    "Another historian, professor J. R. McNeill, was on the whole complimentary, but thought Diamond oversold geography as an explanation for history and underemphasized cultural autonomy.[3][12]

    In his last book published in 2000, the anthropologist and geographer James Morris Blaut criticized Guns, Germs, and Steel for reviving the theory of environmental determinism, and described Diamond as an example of a modern Eurocentric historian.[13] Blaut criticizes Diamond's loose use of the terms "Eurasia" and "innovative", which he believes misleads the reader into presuming that Western Europe is responsible for technological inventions that arose in the Middle East and Asia.[14]"


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guns,_Germs,_and_Steel ;


    Given the scope of this study, if you are aware of any other books that explain why Europe/Asia thrived, while most other cultures barely progressed beyond the stone ages, I'm willing to listen.  Some would argue genetic laziness, sloth and a general of lack of intellect.  IQ studies that deal with intelligence quotients of specific races would back that line of thought up. I would argue that if your climate, food and natural resources no not necessitate innovation - the need to progress isn't there.

  • Reply 104 of 107
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

    And yet, the reviews say quite the opposite.


    What do reviews have to do with accuracy? How is that supposed to be evidence that it’s true? I’d love your thoughts on this take on it.

        I read Guns, Germs and Steel some years ago, and provided many “aha” moments. Diamond's explanations are extremely compelling, even to someone with more than a passing education in history, geography and historiography. Of course, they are all a “just so” story, rather than an accurate representation of how things turned out. Geography, of course, is important in the historical development of different nations and civilizations. Is geography (along with associated factors of agricultural technology, domesticated animals and his pained explanation about why Europeans were better with guns than the Chinese who invented them) the only factor in why Western Civilization grew to dominate others? Of course it isn't.

        Europe had no unique access to these things: Asian civilizations had arguably superior such advantages. Victor Davis Hanson makes a similar “one factor” argument in his book Carnage and Culture. Hanson's argument is that Westerners are simply better at war than other civilizations, because most Westerners were influenced by the Ancient Greeks, who developed methods of combat and developing innovations superior to that of other nations. Is Hanson's theory 100% the One True Answer? No, the rise of Japan and the invincibility of Mongol raiders rather puts his theory to fault, but it’s at least as important as geography. There are all kinds of “one factor” arguments possible, all of which could make for as convincing a book as this one.

        Victorian historians thought it was the vigor of “Nordic” civilizations which made Western world domination inevitable: also convincing if that was the only book you had read on that particular day, and were also ultimately deeply silly (basically, this means the West dominates because it is dominant). Other Victorian historians made out human history to be the product of great battles, all of which had a huge element of random chance. Spengler also famously thought of civilizations as “cultural organisms” which eventually get old, become frail and die, just like any other organism whose telomeres have gotten shorter. I would imagine, like in, say, finance, the actual explanation for history is kind of complicated. I bet the Greek way of war has something to do with it, along with geography, culture, the Catholic Church, language and a whole lot of random chance. It's nice to think we know exactly why something happened, but a lot of what happens in the world, especially the world of human beings, is just plain random noise. Putting one factor explanations on history as Diamond does is not particularly helpful. 

        There is also the matter of historical perspective. Diamond writes as if everything leading up to the present time of European world cultural domination was some kind of historical inevitability, and that, of course, thus it will always be. This is the sheerest nonsense. At various times in human history, “Western Civilization” consisted of illiterate barbarians living in mud huts. In very recent times in human history (like, say, the 1940s), it kind of looked like that's where the West was heading again. Other civilizations culturally and physically eclipsed or dominated the West through history: the Japanese, the Chinese, the Islamic civilizations, Egyptian, Assyrian, Mongolian, Persian or Russian (if you count them as different, which they are for the purpose of categorization, even though they’re mainly caucasoid–with some mongoloid) civilizations made Western civilization irrelevant through vast swathes of human history. Such civilizations may again eclipse Western civilization. Just to take one example, the Zoroastrian Persian civilization lasted longer than Rome, covered more territory, and was in many ways more advanced. They even generally beat the Romans in warfare in the Middle East. Why should I privilege the Romans over the Persians, just because some nations who were rather vaguely influenced by Rome now dominate the nations who were influenced by the Persians? I privilege them because they are my cultural ancestors, though in 1000 years, the poetry of Rumi may be more important than that of Martial.

        Finally, there are the matters of Diamond's historical veracity and bigotry. To address the second thing first, he seems to take a sort of perverse glee in making racial pronouncements to the detriment of “Western” people. According to Diamond, Western people are dirty and have developed special immune systems–something I find hard to believe and doubt is backed up by anything resembling statistical fact. Why wouldn't east Asians have developed superior immune systems? They lived in cities longer than the ancestors of most Westerners. Also, according to Diamond, he can tell that the average New Guinean is “on the average more intelligent, more alert, more expressive, and more interested in things and people than the average European or American.” (page 20, along with a tortured explanation of why Diamond's vacation perceptions are supposed to be superior to a century of psychometric research) This is the sort of casual bigotry that used to inform Nordicist history about the dominance of the West, except somehow it becomes politically correct when pointed at Western people in modern times.

        The following is a list of the arguments Guns, Germs and Steel makes and accompanying refutations.

        1. The unrivaled extent of the Eurasian landmass allowed the proliferation of many different civilizations, between which information could be exchanged allowing far greater cross-fertilization of cultures.

        WRONG! However unified the Eurasian landmass may look to a cartographer, it is intractably divided by formidable topographical features. Europe is isolated from Central Asia by the Alps, the Urals, the Caucasus, the Russian Steppes, the Taiga, and the Anatolian plateau. East Asia is divided from Central Asia by the Thar desert, the Himalayas, the Gobi desert, and the Tian Shan mountains. No significant cultural exchanges took place between these regions until the 15th century, by which time sub-Saharan Africa and America lagged far behind Europe and China technologically and culturally. Sub-Saharan Africa lies as close to the Fertile Crescent, regarded as the cradle of civilization, as Western Europe, and far closer than China.

        2. A diverse abundance of potential food crops is necessary in order for settled agricultural communities to flourish. 

        WRONG! The Inca created a complex civilization based on the cultivation of two food crops: the potato and maize. Large agricultural communities, like Cahokia in North America, flourished on the exploitation of maize. Western European agriculture was overwhelmingly based on wheat production, China's on rice.

        3. The European biome contained a greater variety of domesticable crops than Africa and America and these crops were more nutritious.

        WRONG! America had indigenous food crops which were more nutritious than European staples. Beans, corn, squashes and peanuts are superior to wheat and, if grown in rotation, create a self-replenishing agricultural cycle. Far from having no viable indigenous staples, Africa had okra, rice, sorghum, millet, the bambara ground nut, black-eyed peas, watermelons, and numerous gourds and tubers, as well as immensely useful plants such as the oil palm and the tamarisk. African slaves actually introduced rice cultivation to the United States. The standard reference on this subject is Lost Crops of Africa.

        4. Eurasia had more domesticable large mammals than Sub-Saharan Africa or the Americas. 

        WRONG! Africa has indigenous breeds of sheep, goats and cattle which were spread from the Sudan to the Cape by 200 AD. The South Americans domesticated the llama. The North Americans, like the Aboriginals of Australia, almost hunted their domesticable mammals to extinction. Why didn't Europeans hunt horses, cows and sheep to extinction?

        5. Only urban civilizations can develop the levels of technological skill and social organization required for military conquest.

        WRONG! The two greatest conquerors in history, Attila the Hun and Ghengis Khan came from nomadic tribal civilizations. Rome was overthrown by nomads. The Indus Valley civilization–perhaps the oldest in human history by far–was destroyed by Indo-European barbarians.

        6. The transmission of European diseases helped European nations conquer non-European nations. 

        WRONG! The European nations had achieved such technological superiority to non-European nations that, by the colonial epoch, there could be no serious question of a non-European army successfully resisting an attack by a European army. Europeans conquered huge swathes of territory with tiny armies (Pizzaro). Epidemic disease only became a factor post-conquest. In Africa, India and South America native diseases hie malaria were just as deadly to Europeans as European diseases were to the indigenous peoples. Also, it is now proven that seals and sea lions brought disease to the Americas, not Europeans.

        7. China lacked the type of convoluted coastline necessary for dissidents to hide out in. 

        WRONG! AND BIZARRE! Is Jared Diamond trying to claim that dissidents can only hide on convoluted coastlines? This is about as strange as his assumption that only large bodies of water constitute an effective barrier to trade and travel. China abounds in intractable wastes and remote mountain ranges where bandits and outlaws fled the authority of central government, the most obvious region being the famous water margin.

        8. Urban populations are less intelligent than non-urban populations.

        WRONG! Western European civilizations sets a premium on education. Abstract reasoning skills are rewarded by better employment prospects, which in turn create enhanced relationship opportunities, meaning that intelligent people are encouraged to procreate with other intelligent people, unlike in Papua New Guinea, where the physical prowess is far more important than deductive logic. The cultural bias of subsaharan Africans against the codification and expression of abstract concepts through language and design is also a current point of interest.


        Europe and China developed the worlds greatest civilizations in regions which were no bigger than the regions inhabited by any other cultures, which enjoyed no great advantages in terms of agricultural potential, which had no special abundance of handy food crops and which had particular disadvantages in terms of climate. Diamond's theory sounds so incontestable because he has edited out substantial volumes of contradictory information with the skill and shamelessness of a Stalin era Commissar.

  • Reply 105 of 107
    hodarhodar Posts: 357member
    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


    1.Genocide is just a side effect of colonization

    The wheat that exists today has been modified, and it is nothing like the wheat from years ago. The original wheat no longer exists. Good old science and technology making things worse for the human race yet again.

    Ummm, where are you getting your FACTS?  Last time I looked, India had ~1.2 Billion people.  Scotland, Ireland, Hong Kong, much of Africa are still very much alive.  Just because you say something silly - doesn't make it true.  Colonies exist to support and create wealth for the host nation.  This goes to back to the Roman Empire and forward.  A land may be conquered, but with the possible exception of Spain and South America (ie. Inca, Mayan, and the Aztecs) pretty much every colony did better after colonization than it was before.


    We have been changing food since the dawn of mankind.  What today is the modern cow, is derived from the Auroch which went extinct around 600AD.  You dog or cat breed likely didn't exist a few hundred years ago.  And yes, grains have changed too.  Tomatoes like the Best Boy, Better Boy and others that you buy at your local green house were created less than 100 years ago.  It's called "Agriculture".

  • Reply 106 of 107
    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

    Tomatoes like the Best Boy, Better Boy and others that you buy at your local green house were created less than 100 years ago.  It's called "Agriculture".

    See, you paint yourself into a corner when you call one of your first modifications “best”. Now you’re screwed. How will you differentiate the subsequent inventions?


    Same with the perversion that passes for “art” these days. “Modern” art happened decades ago. “Postmodern” art is also in the past. Now it’s “hypermodernism” and “post-postmodernism”. Come on, guys. Get it together.


    Oh, crap, I just turned this thread into an argument about Apple’s naming conventions. <img class=" src="http://forums-files.appleinsider.com/images/smilies//lol.gif" />


    “Introducing the Tomato 6S, our 9th model of genetically modified tomato!” 

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