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Desc:youtube comments won't load for me but I'm sure they're brilliant
Category:News & Politics, Educational
Tags:stanford, donald trump, ken burns, civilization, trump
Submitted:Sudan no1
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Comment count is 18
zurf - 2016-06-13
Oscar Wildcat - 2016-06-13
...and I was sort of hoping Ken Burns could be Trump's Leni Riefenstahl? Bridges burning brightly and all that.
That guy - 2016-06-14
1.3% of crowd booing.
The Mothership - 2016-06-14
All the stanford people I've ever met are right wing loonies.
Sudan no1 - 2016-06-14
and/or rapists

15th - 2016-06-14
Pepsi/Coke democracy 4 ever.
That guy - 2016-06-14

Anaxagoras - 2016-06-14
Jesus Christ. Even when Burns is advocating a position I more-or-less agree with, he's terrible.

"the retrograde forces that have invaded our democratic process."

Uh.. Ken? Kenny boy? Those forces haven't "invaded" our process. They're an inherent part of our social fabric. Our nation was birthed with the institution of slavery baked into it, you know. I think we even fought a war about that. I wonder if there are any documentaries out there you could watch to learn more about that conflict.
That guy - 2016-06-14
He's annoying, yes.

I think the latter part of your analysis might be squeezing too hard, though.

Anaxagoras - 2016-06-14
I'm not sure what you mean. Even a cursory glance at American history demonstrates that we've always been shitbirds of the highest order, and that Trump isn't really bringing anything new to the table, although he is a bit more open about it than anybody in living memory.

But he definitely is resonating with his fellow shitbirds, so there's obviously *something* there in the American social fabric that is responding to him.

BTW, I just focused on the Civil War because Burns' documentary is *such* a softball, flattering Americans at every turn and rarely demonstrating just how awful Americans of that era were. (And, by extension, it rarely demonstrates how awful Americans of the current era are.)

That guy - 2016-06-14
Anax, I guess the quickest way I can say what I meant is:
"Retrograde" can be fairly considered as a relative statement, right? Not as an absolutist one...?

It's hard to evaluate some as big and as multifaceted as the judgment you made.
Who's the 'we', exactly?
How do you weigh 'us' as shitbirds against humanity as a whole, or other nations?
Good luck finding a people who don't have a bunch of racist xenophobes in their number. Where would you go?

Sharpshooter fallacy?

That guy - 2016-06-14
Also, please let's not have a discussion about how Trump is *precisely* the same as what all Republicans have wanted in recent decades. Please don't do that. Let's be pros at amateur political punditry.

Anaxagoras - 2016-06-14
Oh, I'm not saying we're worse than other people. (We are in some ways, we aren't in others.) But it's part of our ridiculous mythology that we *are* better than other people, and we're not. It's also part of our ridiculous mythology that we're basically, at heart, good people. Again, we're not. We're just people.

But Ken Burns, throughout his documentary work, has consistently tried to prop up the "We're awesome!" American myth. And I wish he'd stop. As someone who ostensibly studies & documents American history, he should know better.

SolRo - 2016-06-14
If anything, you could say much of American history is defined by a few intelligent liberal-leaning politicians forcing the bigoted and right-wing majority to accept a progressive agenda.

If America was a direct democracy from the start, it would still be a theocracy participating in slavery (unless forced to stop by other nations)

That guy - 2016-06-14
ok, I follow you now

Bort - 2016-06-16
Anaxagoras - I'm still peeved at Burns for trying to prop up the "states rights" model of the Civil War, which he could do only by rearranging chronology (so that commentary made after the war was presented as if it preceded the war), deliberate omission (such as the Declarations of Causes of Secession which made it damn clear it was about slavery), and the use of biased experts (letting Shelby Foote tell you what people "really" thought at the time). I eventually stopped watching "The Civil War" because I got sick of yelling at the TV.

Anaxagoras - 2016-06-16
Yeah, that stuff was pretty nauseating, but what made me finally turn it off was something more petty: his repeated insistence that the world's eyes were on us, and everybody on the planet was waiting with bated breath to see who would win the colossal struggle in the glorious United States.

Look dude, just because some foreign reporters were here doesn't mean the average citizen in Russia was transfixed by our civil war.

Bort - 2016-06-16
That makes me wonder, does every nation assume that it fought all the great battles of Good vs. Evil? Do the English think that the Roundheads vs. Cavaliers was the ultimate showdown between right and wrong?

I know the Soviet Union considered WWII to be the Great Patriotic War, but they've got some claim to it: all the big battles against the Nazis were on the Eastern Front, with Hogan's Heroes playing only a relatively minor part in wearing them down all that time.

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