Discussion on MicroMuse:
The Moral Majority Meets the Ethical Minority

Moulton: Ok, Back to our soap opera...

Rebrane : yay!

Elvis_Khomeni laughs and cringes in one strange but fluid motion...

Moulton: The Moral Majority Meets the Ethical Minority...

Moulton: Here's the Plot... The Moral Majority makes a Rule: The Rule is that the Ethical Minority must obey the Rule of the Moral Majority.

Moulton: What happens next?

Elvis_Khomeni : The ethical minority gets @nuked?

Moulton: You're jumping too far ahead. What happens *next*?

Rebrane : Isn't that rule kinda redundant?

Moulton: Not really. The Majority have to assert the Right of Majority Rule.

Moulton: Majority Rule is not a given.

Faceless: The minority rebels because oppression breeds resistance and no one is happy.

Elvis_Khomeni : Yeah, if that wasn't assumed in the first place, then the Ethical Minority wouldn't obey the new rule.

Aja: Question..who has the guns ? 8)

Rebrane : Oh, I thought by 'must obey the Rule of the Majority' you meant this rule.

Moulton: OK. How do they rebel?

Chounard: But majority rule without protection for the minority is tyranny.

Moulton: Right. So what does the Ethical Minority do?

Cocoa: The minority whines and forms groups but usually nothing comes of it.

Chounard: Civil disobedience?

Rebrane : Anarchy?

Faceless: They voice their opinions or try to make themselves heard in some way.

Aja is more of a *revolutionary* state of mind tonight

Moulton: OK, I have three interesting responses.

Chounard: Passive resistance?

Aja: Coup.

Moulton: Chounard says they can civilly disobey the rule. Rebrane, what do you mean by 'anarchy'? And Faceless, what if the Majority politely listen and say, "Sorry, you must obey nonetheless, cuz them's the rules."

Elvis_Khomeni : I don't get it. What's the point of the question? Are we to assume certain things about the two groups, or what?

Moulton: Nothing is assumed. We are going to run this morality play forward and see what happens.

Aja's more violent approach isn't being taken into account I see 8)

Rebrane: What do I mean by anarchy? They refuse to follow the rule, to the extent that it doesn't harm them too badly.

Faceless: That's what the majority always does. That's what majority means. They have the right of way. by the way: what type of rules are we talking about?

Cocoa: Either they have to just deal with the rules and the situation, or they try to take over.

Moulton: Chounard has proposed action through inaction. Civil Disobedience. Faceless has proposed asserting the objections.

Chounard: Anarchy is the complete absence of order.

Faceless: I did?

Rebrane: Well, he asked what I meant by it. I was being more specific.

Moulton: Oh, so Rebrane, you are with Chounard on Civil Disobedience, as long as the Moral Majority doesn't beat up on them?

Rebrane thinks that's probable if it happens right now.

Elvis_Khomeni : The Ethical Minority make a lot of noise, but since presumably the Majority have the means to enforce their will, they have to submit and hope to subvert the bastards later.

Moulton: OK. Let's go with Civil Disobedience... The Ethical Minority politely refuses to obey the Rule of the Moral Majority. What happens next?

Faceless: Punishment!

Moulton: What does the Moral Majority do?

Aja: What kind of power does the M.M. have?

Cocoa: Compromises? Or ignores

Psyche: If they're really moral.. leave them be

Rebrane: The majority, being moral, will not be too harsh for things that are not too harsh, so they'll tolerate it, to an extent...

Moulton: They have the power to be Moral Beings.

Chounard: the Minority creates enough roadblocks and disruption in society that the majority must agree to limitations on their formerly unlimited powers.

Faceless: The majority says the minority is silly until they see their point.. which, according to Murphy's law.. they usually won't.

Rebrane: Although, being human, the majority will have to go one way or another eventually: either take action, or give in.

Chounard: Which should then safeguard the rights of the minority.

Moulton: Well, it appears we are a bit unclear on how the movie unfolds at this juncture.

Rebrane: And also, Moulton...does the M.M. want approval from the E.M.? or do they not care?

Moulton: Let's say they care more about prevailing than winning the approval or respect of the Ethical Minority.

Chounard: They don't have to care if the E.M. makes life miserable for all of them.

Faceless: It really depends on what the particulars of the issue are, Moulton.. people think differently bout different things.

Elvis_Khomeni : The minority starts throwing rocks at the majority, the majority shoots back at the minority, the minority gets guns, the majority starts building settlements, the minority starts bombing Egged busses... Oh, maybe I'm taking this thing too literally. :)

Aja: How does the M.M. intend on "enforcing" their rule?

Moulton: So you are saying Situational Ethics, Faceless? It depends on the exact situation?

Psyche: Basically Moulton.. I have found.. that when ignorance is erased.. all morals are the same

Elvis_Khomeni : That's stretching it a bit.

Faceless: Yeah. you can't just blanket a whole group of situations. you have to be more specific.

Moulton: Um, Elvis, we already went with the plot line that says the Ethical Minority *politely* refuse to obey.

Moulton: It's not polite to throw rocks. OK?

Faceless laughs.

Elvis_Khomeni : It was a joke.

Cocoa: Israel

Chounard: depends on how much the M.M. feels it needs to hang onto power, and how far they are willing to go to hang on.

Aja: I see..were not talking confrontation here 8)

Moulton: OK, Cocoa has suggested a Real Life example.. Israel.

Moulton: Who plays which part in Israel, Cocoa?

Aja: The M.M. of course.

Chounard: Interesting question.

Rebrane: It's likely that the M.M. will give the E.M. a few concessions...enough to shut them up.

Chounard: Depends on your point of view.

Elvis_Khomeni : Er, you might want to look back at that statement I made that you flamed... that was the allusion I was trying to make.

Faceless likes Rebrane's solution.

Moulton: So Rebrane says the Moral Majority see the error of their Rule of Tyranny, and yield some benefit to the Ethical Minority?

Chounard: Do the Israelis yield to the Palestinians - and vice versa?

Faceless: No no no.. the M.M. just wants the E.M. to shut up. (in most cases)

Rebrane: No, I'm saying that the M.M. wants the E.M. to stop rebelling, so they give a few little concessions to the E.M. and hype them up.

Aja: Wouldn't happen with the Israelis.

Rebrane: In hopes that the E.M. will stop rebelling.

Faceless happys at Rebrane.

Aja: How about Cuba or Nicaragua....no..wait..Vietnam...

Rebrane wonders how you happy at someone.

Aja: Classic example of the minority pushing the majority out.

Chounard: Which?

Moulton: Chounard, can you summarize what we have pulled out of this Morality Play so far?

Chounard: Hmm... The "Moral" majority will have its way as long as it isn't pushed too hard by the Ethical Minority. Then they must decide how important this issue is to them. ... and how much they wish to push back.

Moulton: In the long run, is it in the interests of the Moral Majority to take into account the needs of the Ethical Minority when making rules and decisions that affect everyone?

Aja: Sure it is.

Faceless hits the over-generalization button.

Chounard: of course - in the interests of an orderly society. But it all depends how attached the MM is to their values.

Moulton: So it boils down to a conflict over values. The value of Equity and Fairness versus the value of Selfishness and Power.

Moulton: If you had to be in one camp or the other, would you rather be a member of the Moral Majority or the Ethical Minority?

Chounard: Perhaps, but as Madison would say, a good government sets one selfish interest against the other selfish interests, and the result is a compromise at least acceptable to all.

Psyche: Ethical Minority.. though in reality there are many minorities.. the majority is simply the average.. minorities may be greater or less than

Rebrane: The majority is who has the power.

Psyche: And the minority holds the key to change.

Faceless: Not always.

Aja: Usually..the minority have the power in S. Africa.

Faceless: what about in a situation where there are only a few rich people who are in power and the poor people are the majority?

Chounard: When Pennsylvania ratified its new constitution in 1775 - considered a model of majority rule democracy - the first thing the legislature did was take away the right to vote from the minority Quakers, who had started the colony in the first place!

Rebrane: What happened to our Movie?

Chounard: Movie?!

Chounard: Sorry!!

Faceless: Moulton?

Moulton: What did the Quakers do?

Hacker-VII: They made lousy oatmeal

Faceless giggles

Hacker-VII: And now Wilford Brimley won't shut up.

Aja: Heh.

Chounard: Eventually the constitution was replaced with one that included protections.

Chounard: But the Founders at Phila. in 1787 took a close look at the Penn situation and made certain to add minority safeguard to the U.S. model. Thus we have a cumbersome and clumsy government!

Chounard: ..but with some minority safeguards!

Moulton thanks the discussants for their participation in tonight's Soap Opera: The Moral Majority Meets the Ethical Minority. Thank you one and all for joining in.

Aja: 8)

Rebrane : yay