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> What is the American frame of mind?
coberst
post Oct 11, 2009, 09:48 AM
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What is the American frame of mind?

I would say that a culture consists of the complex of ideas that a group of people hold dear. One can speak of the culture of a small group or of a very large group.

In the United States our culture is determined to a large extent by how we hold "these truths to be self-evident"; we are held together by ideas perhaps more than other societies. Next, religion plays a great role, and in our case it is the mixture of Protestantism, Judaism, and Catholicism. Following this is our infatuation with capitalism; following that is our narcissistic view of our uniqueness and greatness.

Our culture is a general attitude toward our self and toward the world based upon these four ideologies.

To what powers have wo/men given allegiance in order to solve the paradoxes of life? To what or to whom have each of us given our uncritical allegiance? “Into what hero-system do I fit the expression of my talent”? What or whom has become my fetish-god?

It is possible for the adult to choose which power s/he will serve; however, to do so, when the choice is contrary to one that has resulted from the family and community clan, is an extremely unusual and heroic act. “The great tragedy of our lives is that the major question of our existence is never put by us--it is put by personal and social impulses for us.”

Very few of us discover our authentic talent—if it is ever found it is generally found accidentally through plain fate by us in our social milieu as we tap...tap...tap our blind way through life.

From a personal point of view our principal task is to somehow find our way out of the fate that we stumbled into and to grow out of our idol worship and fetishism and to expand our horizons, allegiances, and to drop our mere preoccupations. We need to free our self from the opinions of others.

“Since aggression is a reaction to frustration, by remaining tightly bound to the success of our social world we increase our aggressiveness, life invariable frustrates us.”

Disinterested knowledge is the energy bunny. It generates the energy for exploration and for overcoming some of the inhibitions conscious reason places on the unconscious.

Studying disinterested knowledge is like taking off a month every year to visit a strange new land. Curiosity is reinvigorated and new meaning is created.[/b

Knowledge is like a jigsaw puzzle. We have created many puzzles in coping with reality and when we received a new piece (knowledge) that does not fit our present puzzles we forgetaboutit. However, if through disinterested knowledge we have created new puzzles we might find a place for this new fragment of knowledge to fit; thereby this fragment becomes our new knowledge.

Our mind is constantly working for us and when we do not give it a worthwhile project, i.e. a new puzzle, it will just waste away in boredom or worry.

[b]In America one might best see this attitude manifested by this frame of mind “I’ve Upped My Income; Now Up Yours”; a manifestation of this attitude may be seen in concrete form by the fact that 45 million citizens are without proper health care.

Do you think that the attitude “I’ve Upped My Income, Now Up Yours” is an American frame of mind?


Quotes from The Birth and Death of Meaning: An Interdisciplinary Perspective on the Problem of Man by Ernest Becker
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post Oct 11, 2009, 09:50 AM
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the 'american frame of mind'! ha! Has it ever evolved?
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post Oct 11, 2009, 05:30 PM
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QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 11, 2009, 09:50 AM) *

the 'american frame of mind'! ha! Has it ever evolved?

Quit your ranting! There's hope in the horizon. And he just won a nobel prize to prove it.
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post Oct 11, 2009, 05:32 PM
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lmao.... how is that ranting? how did you read and interpret that.... haha!
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post Oct 12, 2009, 07:53 AM
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QUOTE(code buttons @ Oct 11, 2009, 09:30 PM) *

Quit your ranting! There's hope in the horizon. And he just won a nobel prize to prove it.

Well, we now have an average 'american frame of mind' as a reference point as to current American temporal modes!
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post Oct 12, 2009, 08:54 AM
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QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 12, 2009, 07:53 AM) *

QUOTE(code buttons @ Oct 11, 2009, 09:30 PM) *

Quit your ranting! There's hope in the horizon. And he just won a nobel prize to prove it.

Well, we now have an average 'american frame of mind' as a reference point as to current American temporal modes!

I think the egotistic, self-centered American frame of mind Coberst is referring to is actually changing with the times. And, hopefully, with the right guidance, for the better. The writting's on the wall, there is no turning back. I am just hoping for a smooth transition.
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post Oct 12, 2009, 11:37 AM
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well, good luck with that transition and in doing your part to help foster that change!
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post Oct 14, 2009, 07:17 PM
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post Oct 15, 2009, 02:49 PM
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You would willing renounce your American citizen ship.... say, if someone were to give you citizenship into any country of your own choosing?!
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Rick
post Oct 15, 2009, 03:27 PM
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QUOTE(code buttons @ Oct 12, 2009, 09:54 AM) *
I think the egotistic, self-centered American frame of mind Coberst is referring to is actually changing with the times. ...

He was talking about Repugligans, who are now completely out of power, for good reason (total failure and bankruptcy). Times are changing.
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post Oct 15, 2009, 04:23 PM
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If any of you present Americans we're to be writing a thesis on the current American frame of mind, how would you word the thesis title?
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post Oct 15, 2009, 07:19 PM
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QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 15, 2009, 02:49 PM) *

You would willing renounce your American citizen ship.... say, if someone were to give you citizenship into any country of your own choosing?!

Only for the Republic of Texas.
QUOTE(Rick @ Oct 15, 2009, 03:27 PM) *

He was talking about Repugligans, who are now completely out of power, for good reason (total failure and bankruptcy). Times are changing.

You hit the nail in the head! Sort of... There's still the Bill Gateses, the DICK Chaneyses, the Washington establishment, the Wall Street Monguls and the unaccounted number of corporate Voltures who've been cannibalizing on the system from the top at cruse-control turpitude mode; most of them WASPS, by the way. That's the few (probably numbered in the hundreds) who give this country a bad name for everyone else. But, yes, change is in the wind; thankfully.
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maximus242
post Oct 15, 2009, 10:03 PM
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It is the nature of capitalism that the greatest risk is equaled with the greatest rewards.

Additionally, the higher the barrier to entry and greater demand, the higher the compensation. Some professions such as fast food attendant have very low barriers to entry, so there is a large supply and thus they receive low pay.

Go up to trades and there is a higher barrier to entry and thus they receive higher pay Higher up into university and you see a higher barrier to entry and typically higher compensation. Then it gets into a field of specialization. Becoming a doctor has a higher barrier to entry than a teacher.

Then it gets into environmental barriers. Becoming a CEO is more difficult than becoming a manager. Becoming a Partner in a law firm is more difficult than becoming a legal assistant. So they have higher pays to match the difficulty to entry.

However, there is one higher class than this with an even more difficult barrier to entry. That is business success itself. It is determined not based off of how well you interview, how good of a school you went to or how long you have been in business...

Business success is determined by the blood of the arena. It is based off of ones ability to bring about success in business -- which has a very, very high barrier to entry. 50% of businesses started close within 5 years. 90% close within 10 years.

Of the ones that survive, 5% of them take in 95% of the money. Not to mention the level of financial, physical and mental sacrifices one makes.

This is why there are extremely wealthy and extremely poor individuals in a capitalist society. The people who seek the easiest and lowest barrier to entry positions are paid next to nothing compared to those who break through the highest barrier to entries. Vis a vi, the billionaires of the world.

Imagine working around the clock, going into debt, taxing all physical and psychological resources, for years at a time, just to build a successful business.

This is what these people live and breath. While everyone else is watching TV and relaxing they are burning the midnight oil.

Why would society compensate one person who takes no risks and has virtually no barrier to entry in a position when another risks everything and breaks through extremely high barriers to entry that often boggle the brightest minds in the country.

Billionaires of the world do not all come from Harvard or Yale, they come from the toughest school of them all. The School Of Hard Knocks.

The man who built the Hershys company went bankrupt 7 times before he became a billionaire. Colonel Sandars was rejected 1002 times before someone agreed to use his recipe.

Donald Trump went 1 billion dollars in debt. Richard Branson spent two years writing letters before someone agreed to advertise in his magazine (working at it full time).

Warren Buffet started learning how to invest when he was 7 years old. In fact the list of billionaires and multi-millionaires is littered with people who have worked ridiculously hard and been incredibly persistent to get where they are. If the rewards were not so large, I doubt few would want to do it.

The thing about America is it is like a Gladiators arena. If your good, you have all the glory, if your not, you have nothing. It rewards the winners and punishes the losers in this game we call life.

Im not saying its the best way or the worst way, it is the way it is. I do think governments have a responsibility to care for all their citizens and make them happy.

However I do not think these men who have risked everything and staked their entire future to become the wealthiest men alive are evil. They have overcome extraordinary difficulties that all others have run from. The majority of people take the easy way out, then wonder and complain they dont get paid much.

Supply and Demand is absolute and at the heart of capitalism.
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post Oct 16, 2009, 01:32 PM
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QUOTE(code buttons @ Oct 15, 2009, 11:19 PM) *

QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 15, 2009, 02:49 PM) *

You would willing renounce your American citizen ship.... say, if someone were to give you citizenship into any country of your own choosing?!

Only for the Republic of Texas.
QUOTE(Rick @ Oct 15, 2009, 03:27 PM) *

.... Times are changing.
.... But, yes, change is in the wind; thankfully.

.... what kind of change do yo see happening? An internal change in the minds and hearts of the American people or a change in how the rest of the world situates the American frame of mind!?

"Only for the Republic of Texas"??? .... what does that even mean?
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post Oct 19, 2009, 05:57 AM
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QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 16, 2009, 01:32 PM) *

QUOTE(code buttons @ Oct 15, 2009, 11:19 PM) *

QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 15, 2009, 02:49 PM) *

You would willing renounce your American citizen ship.... say, if someone were to give you citizenship into any country of your own choosing?!

Only for the Republic of Texas.
QUOTE(Rick @ Oct 15, 2009, 03:27 PM) *

.... Times are changing.
.... But, yes, change is in the wind; thankfully.

.... what kind of change do yo see happening? An internal change in the minds and hearts of the American people or a change in how the rest of the world situates the American frame of mind!?

"Only for the Republic of Texas"??? .... what does that even mean?

Texas was an independent republic in the past, and there's always that little independence bug buzzing around here. Not that Texans would act on it, unless given the chance.
I see change in the American psyche, as a wind of humillity is finally starting to blow this way, mainly from the east. I may be wrong, but, having elected a president such as Obama is a sure sign that things aren't like they used to be. I really like this change, though.
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post Oct 19, 2009, 02:31 PM
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does it feel liberating .... in a way?!

Canada has the same thing going on in the mostly francophone province of Quebec with the french separatist movement there!
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Enki
post Oct 19, 2009, 10:31 PM
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QUOTE(coberst @ Oct 11, 2009, 09:48 AM) *

What is the American frame of mind?

I would say that a culture consists of the complex of ideas that a group of people hold dear. One can speak of the culture of a small group or of a very large group.

In the United States our culture is determined to a large extent by how we hold "these truths to be self-evident"; we are held together by ideas perhaps more than other societies. Next, religion plays a great role, and in our case it is the mixture of Protestantism, Judaism, and Catholicism. Following this is our infatuation with capitalism; following that is our narcissistic view of our uniqueness and greatness.

Our culture is a general attitude toward our self and toward the world based upon these four ideologies.


You forgot to mention Satanism along with Protestantism, Judaism, and Catholicism.

I think it is a significant constituent part of that mixture.
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post Oct 20, 2009, 12:10 PM
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QUOTE(Trip like I do @ Oct 19, 2009, 02:31 PM) *

does it feel liberating .... in a way?!

Canada has the same thing going on in the mostly francophone province of Quebec with the french separatist movement there!

The United States of America has been a beacon of democracy for almost a century. And there's no telling how unjust and different the world would be had it not been for the US presence and muscle in the world. Whoever takes the baton has a huge responsability over their shoulders in continue to forge a world with equal opportunity for all.
And no, the separatist movement in Texas is nothing like what they have in Canada. Here is just a few nuts making some noise. But Texas has a very strong sense of pride and independence.
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Enki
post Oct 20, 2009, 12:31 PM
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Not HAS BEEN but WAS.
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