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Rippounet

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  1. The US will be a rogue state, the main obstacle to collective solution-seeking and promotion of democratic/liberal values around the world. That doesn't necessarily mean that the US itself will no longer be a "democracy" (perhaps we should say, "republic" ;) ). But quite obviously, it will keep promoting its interests (/the interests of its corporations) first, and given the fact that its economic power will decrease and the attractiveness of its institutional/ideological "model" wane, will be increasingly tempted to rely on its "hard power," i.e. its massive military. That's not to say that it will necessarily commit to a world war, but I would expect it to go back to instigating numerous "proxy wars," especially since conflicts for resources will multiply in the context of global warming. In other words, a return to the darkest of Cold War realpolitik, except this time the US will barely have any soft power and reliable allies left, which means the brutality of its foreign policy will be cranked up a notch. And to be clear, from an outsider's perspective, there's little difference between the Republicans and the Democrats. If anything, the historical record shows Republicans can be both highly cynical and surprisingly flexible in their approach to foreign policy (they're less afraid of appearing "soft"). And of course, anyone well-informed knows that there's no solid reason to use the future tense here. The US has been a rogue state for decades now, and is widely considered as a terrorist state and a major source of instability around the world in many (if not most ?) developing countries and intellectual circles. The only real difference to be expected is of tone rather than substance. As the effects of climate change intensify, one can expect the US to drop any kind of pretense and openly defend its interests in the most aggressive possible way. For instance, I would totally not rule out nuclear blackmail and limited nuclear strikes (the Republicans have been pushing for the development of "usable" "small-scale" nuclear weapons for decades). From an outsider's perspective, one can only hope American liberals can prevent the worst excesses. In the long run though, I expect they won't. As our planet starts burning (or close enough), everyone will "rally-round-the-flag" and adhere to some version of "America First." All nations will fall back to their own version of exceptionalism to attempt to shield their citizens from the worst (i.e. thirst and starvation). It's just that the US will have the biggest military, so will be the greatest threat to everyone else.
  2. In the book there are four excellent reasons why the Earth fleet doesn't retaliate hard against the Belt: Of course, these reasons don't exactly work on the show because of the changes they made. But that's not the book's problem.
  3. Come on. No one said that. Just a bit of perspective. Given the fandom, if the OT was released today, even in modernized form, it would be torn to pieces. The reason it gets a pass is because it started it all and because (let's be honest) we were kids when we first saw it. I'm the first one to have harsh words for works of fiction after watching them, but after some time one can just let it go. There's really no reason to hate on movies that were released years or decades ago. Otherwise, the OT doesn't get a pass either. It's that simple. With time, I'm more inclined to give even the ST a shot, at least the first two movies. And I love pretty much everything else I've every seen or read in the SW universe.
  4. The point isn't to "try hard to find something." Even as a kid I found a giant worm on an asteroid or anthropophagous teddy bears ridiculous, and believe me, I wasn't trying. The point here being that before going too hard on the criticism of more recent stuff, it's nice to have a bit of perspective and remember that there always were some poorly-written stuff in StarWars, from the very beginning. And when I see some of the hate poured here against decent stuff (not great, but decent) like The Mandalorian, I can't help but think that the people voicing these criticisms have in fact no perspective whatsoever.
  5. Christ, I thought I was the only one losing it on forums. So far, like you, I've been losing my shit online exclusively, and not dramatically just yet. Today Moodle froze in the middle of an online test for the second time in a week. Dozens of panicked students sent me emails about it, and I... just can't anymore. Everything combined... At this point I just want to get so high I can forget my own name. I might try that tonight as a matter of fact. Once I have graded the 118 tests that did actually work of course.
  6. Eh... I'm in the minority but I really liked the exposition Having not read the books, there are things I don't get, or am unsure of, here or there. The exposition clarified several things at once and raised the stakes a bit, giving everything more of an epic twist. Honestly, without the exposition, I'm not sure the fight for the knife would have worked for me.
  7. It's very clear that people who hate on almost everything (the PT, the ST, or The Mandalorian) (hello @Veltigar), but somehow don't see just how many plotholes, unresolved questions, or ridiculous moments the OT had, have some weird-ass rose-tinted glasses at home.
  8. Indeed, "amazing" is an adjective I keep for the shows that truly blew my mind, not for every single show I find good/entertaining.
  9. Not sure anyone said The Mandalorian was "amazing" as a whole. Pretty much everyone has been saying that the writing tends to be underwhelming. Cool images do have some value though, which is presumably why we watch a lot of otherwise mediocre stuff. BTW, since you hate the PT, I'm not sure what "quality writing" you've ever seen in StarWars. I mean, the best plot twists of the OT weren't even really planned in the first movie, so I'm not sure when StarWars was ever well written. If anything, as per StarWars standards, The Mandalorian is quite clearly above average.
  10. Yup. Pure entertainment, but better not think too hard about anything. I think that was the point. In this show it's "rule of cool" before anything else. I'm not saying it's great all the time, but I'd say it's pretty clear from the start. At this point we all know we're seeing someone's StarWars roleplaying campaign, and the DM doesn't care about pulling things out of his ass if it feels cool. They could have aimed for better, but avoided risks. Given how unforgiving the fandom is, I won't blame them.
  11. Dude. Almost every time we have an exchange I mention the history, some articles, studies, or polls, something my ideas are based of. I substantiate. You pretty much never do that. Most of the time, you state your opinions as fact and never bother to prove anything. In this case, the irony is thick. I've lived most of my life (about 2/3rds) in French suburbs. To this day I live in a French suburb with a large Muslim population. I have worked in such a suburb with troubled youths (in a high school). Several of my friends are social workers (at least 3), and I also have a friend who is a primary sschool teacher in what is -on paper at least- one of the worst suburbs of the country. So I have boots on the ground, I know the territory well, I have training as a scholar, and I'm familiar with the studies on the topic. And you, who are living in the US, working in STEM (an engineer I guess), who's probably never even set foot in a French suburb (you lived in Switzerland IIRC), think I am the dogmatic one? Methinks you just inadvertently revealed how your mind works. You have a few simple ideas about the world (academia is biased, leftists are globalists, unchecked immigration is bad... that kind of bull) and you think you can waltz in to offer your simplistic views in just every topic, as if your opinion is somehow just as valid as people who actually know what they're talking about. Take a reality check. You're talking out of your ass. Again. It's good to challenge others a bit to get to the truth, but you need to know when to stop and shut up. For instance: And what is this grand pronouncement based on? How the fuck would you know? And of course, you're wrong. But why would I even bother explaining why? You'd just ignore any invenient evidence, as you always do. FYI, in real life I avoid such conversations, unless I want to make fun of the other person. An American engineer trying to lecture me on what's going on in French suburbs for instance is truly priceles.
  12. Pretty solid episode imho (one of the best of the show so far imho). Will rewatch it later on a bigger screen to enjoy it better.
  13. Well, that was bad. Pretty much everything I dislike in Discovery concentrated in one episode. The world-building is cool though. At this point, I think I keep watching this show for Saru.
  14. Since we mentioned this earlier...
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