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I don't think so...there are worse things than culture wars and violence. That's how America was born.....complete with great oratory and statesmanship of old:

...Sir, we are not weak, if we make a proper use of the means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. Three millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us.

The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable -- and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come!

It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, "Peace! Peace!" -- but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!

Patrick Henry - March 23, 1775

I have to say, BC, you have validated my interest in your posts with that one. You really had me scratching my head on that.

I realized that you're correct - that violence and culture wars rule actually produced the US of A that was so successful. But it seems counter-intuitive that order could come from such chaos.

I guess the other big problem I have for the way things are run now is that there are solutions to our problems that are never aired. There's a dearth of new ideas.

I still would like to see a higher quality of debate, but you have convinced me that there was no golden age, and it's possible that a good system may have ugly roots.

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....I guess the other big problem I have for the way things are run now is that there are solutions to our problems that are never aired. There's a dearth of new ideas.

You are certainly right about that....it is very easy to become polarized with no middle ground. The very word "compromise" is viewed with suspicion. We have even coined the term "good cop - bad cop" for the cynical strategy that leverages extremes to gain advantage in the middle.

I still would like to see a higher quality of debate, but you have convinced me that there was no golden age, and it's possible that a good system may have ugly roots.

I think that will become more and more difficult to realize in the post-modern age for a number of different reasons that form a perfect storm and the absence of "quality". We had a thread a while back when William F. Buckley passed away, and no matter how you felt about him, anyone with gray hair knew that one of the last articulate intellectuals was gone....not just physically, but from media in general.

Not surprisingly....my son (and most other sons / daughters) are loath to join their high school debate team! :lol:

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No one could deny Buckley's intelligence, even if you disagreed with his world view.

There used to be a show on Global called 'The Great Debate'

http://www.tvarchive.ca/database/17153/gre...e,_the/details/

The topics were usually tame, but nonetheless there was an air of intellectualism in that show, that was available to anyone with an inquiring mind and a television set. My hope for the internet is that sites that MapleLeafWeb will eventually become centres for those who respectfully disagree.

I fully believe that a handful of posters here across political stripes could produce ideas that would outclass any politicians'.

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