Friday, August 23, 2013

Why Advocacy Groups are Bad for the U.S.? (Part III)

Progress – Whenever there are two extreme advocacy groups progress is slow and a total waste of money and resources. Instead of groups trying to come together to creatively solve issues; they are stubborn, brainwashed, and resort to being completely disrespectful and hateful towards their adversaries (I was always taught to respect adversaries). This is no way to resolve differences. I proposed using carbon scrubbing technology to bridge climate change ideologies; I proposed allowing the people of each state vote in an election as a way to resolve social issues; and I proposed using smart guns to bridge differences in gun rights ideologies. I was called a lot of names from both sides and even threatened for merely brainstorming instead of blamestorming. If my ideas of a smart gun were available, then we would have the forensic data to understand what happened during the Trayvon Martin shooting. We would have known the exact location the gun was fired, the direction the gun was fired, and the height at which the gun was fired. This would have corroborated Zimmerman’s story or shown he was liar. And maybe today the dozens of people who have died in the aftermath of the Martin decision would have been saved. This would have been progress and provide forensic data to resolve “stand your ground” disputes. Research companies tell us that they are making progress on curing medical disorders. This is really not true. Despite throwing trillions of dollars into research over the past half century we are no closer to developing a cure for cancer and uncovering what causes any neurological disorder. Progress has been made in preventative care, especially in imaging. Some progress has been made to treat symptoms with new drugs (unfortunately, most drugs may help alleviate some symptoms but have other adverse side effects). Many advocacy groups such as Livestrong take in millions, but the money does not even go to find a cure. One of the biggest problems stunting progress for advocacy groups is hypocrisy. Environmentalists, for instance, will not practice what they preach. For instance, environmentalists do not think the same restrictions they want to place on corporations should apply to individuals. Environmentalists want to put green energy sources in your backyard, but not in their own yard. Environmentalists want you to conserve energy, so they do not have to.

Publicity and Perception – Advocacy groups in many cases will do whatever it takes to obtain publicity even if it is negative or false. Usually special interests paint a false perception such as green energy is favorable for the environment. This is not true. Hydropower damns kill fish, wind turbines kill birds, and wind and solar farms take up huge land masses and disrupt plant and wildlife. Electric car batteries weigh 600 pounds and the materials to make the batteries are obtained through mining.

Proactive – Many advocacy groups are reactive instead of proactive. We see behavior with civil rights leaders – Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. They only spring into action once they perceive an injustice was done. This type of reaction works best to polarize and brainwash followers and does nothing to unite Americans.

Protection – Most advocacy groups are protected by the government and do not have to pay any taxes. In fact, many advocacy groups receive government funding (there is nothing political about this?). And of course there are many advocacy groups who feel they are protecting something – this is especially true with the hundreds of environmental groups. Environmental groups will go as far as they can to protect a bug at the expense of their neighbor’s wellbeing. As I pointed out earlier, green energy does not protect the environment.

I have come up with a dozen ways advocacy groups are bad for the U.S. just using the letter P. I suppose there are hundreds of other reasons using the letters of the alphabet.


  1. The whole of the thesis that advocacy groups are bad leaves me scratching my head. And this isn the third in a series making that and only that point.

    There seem to be two rationales driving the thesis. The first is that one should respect his adversary, and work with him to compromise rather than defeat him. The second is that if one can think for himself, he has no need to join with others in a group.

    When as a homeowner I find myself facing an armed robber, I'm hard pressed to see and seek the compromise or middle ground. Talk with him about what he'll steal and negotiate that down? I'm somehow stuck believing that I have unalienable rights from the Creator or Nature's God, including self-defense of my property, so oughta shoot the guy.

    When a rapee looks up at a rapist, should she start negotiating for just, say, heavy petting, sans penetration? Maybe hand the guy a condom? Somehow I'm just stuck on the idea that the rapee is right and the rapist is wrong, the former good, the latter evil, that truth resides with the former, not somewhere in the middle.

    My laborious rational and logical analysis of what can and cannot make sense of the observable world around us leads me to what I conclude are truths and falsities. Among those are that each human being comes to Planet Earth sovereign, so subject to no other without explicit permission. To argue otherwise results in a predicate which implodes of its own weight.

    When, then, someone asserts a right to tell me what I must do, therefore, I say "no", not "how much". When someone asserts that, though they don't have a right to rob me personally, they have a right to get government to do it for them, I say "no", not "how much".

    On Tuesday September 10, I will stand on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol saying "no" to the United States Congress. And, though I can think for myself, even to the point of being assured that I know truth -- know right from wrong, good from evil, acceptable from unacceptable, liberty from license, constitutional from unconstitutional -- I will be immensely pleased to be joined by hopefully a couple-million other citizens of like-or-similar mind so that my "no" is amplified on the 1,070 target ears.

    1. Your examples make little sense to me. There is no advocacy group for home invasion. Besides, many times people do bargain with burglars such as saying take anything but do not harm me or don't harm my family.

      You will on the West Lawn protesting with people who agree with you and that is the dumbing down of America. It is easy to speak out when everyone agrees with you.

      I find I may agree with Hannity on a lot of things, however I find the way I draw my conclusions are vastly different.

    2. I said, Pat, "There seem to be two rationales driving the thesis. The first is that one should respect his adversary, and work with him to compromise rather than defeat him."

      The two examples of the homeowner and the rapee have to do with respecting your adversary, compromising, and not trying to defeat him. Has nothing-nil-nada-zero-zip-zilch to do with advocacy groups.

      Then, Pat, I said, "The second is that if one can think for himself, he has no need to join with others in a group." The West Lawn protest has to do with my voice being "joined by hopefully a couple-million other citizens of like-or-similar mind so that my "no" is amplified on the 1,070 target ears." Rather than being "dumbed down", my point will be amplified, maybe, a million times over.

      You, Pat, seem to see no value whatever in a vocalist participating in a choir.

    3. I see no value in being a follower and that is what we have become of nation of - followers.

      Trust me, when I get my point across to a politician it is face to face.

      This country lacks leaders and we certainly do not need anymore followers.

    4. Those who signed the Declaration of Independence, I infer, were an advocacy group of followers. Those who authored and signed the U.S. Constitution, I infer, were an advocacy group of followers.

      Each, because each was capable of himself thinking, should have declared independence, not only from the British, but from all those other so-called "Founders" as well. And each should have fought his own revolution against the British Navy and infantry regiments . . . "face to face."

    5. Really? You are comparing yourself and what is going on in America today to the founding fathers? This is a weak argument to justify your actions.

      You may be right, you are not about the group, but about yourself and ego.

      No advocacy group in America today compares to the founding fathers - who yes, compromised and respected their adversaries.

  2. Looks like you’ve sparked an interesting debate, Patrick!

    IMO, the subject of advocacy groups brings up a conflict between two fundamental rights. On the one hand we always have the right to free speech and to make our voices heard; however, each of us also has the right to equal representation in our government. When special interest groups are allowed to send their representatives to meet with our elected representatives and plead the case for what they want, that certainly smacks to me of unequal access to the government.

    I don’t think we can ever fully eradicate the problem of people trying to seek special influence over the government. That’s something certain people are naturally inclined to do. The only real way to resolve the dilemma of special interest groups, at least at the federal level, is through limited gov’t. A truly constitutional federal gov’t would have very little extra money for people to fight over. And a truly constitutional federal gov’t would have little else to fight over because there’s not a lot of gray area if one is abiding strictly by the Constitution.

    1. I agree CW, it will never be cleared up. Especially if everyone thinks like Dr. Pete - that advocacy groups are okay (and it is okay to get government funding) if they agree with my beliefs.

      I joined a few sites associated with my neurological disorder and it is depressing. I cannot imagine living like these other people, who have basically given up on living. People see others give excuses for avoidance and they of course follow. What's worse, doctors tell us to slow down and are willing to sign any documentation for us to go on disability. I am trying to show these folks you can still achieve. I teach myself to walk and get dressed each day and before the day is over I am wrestling a Colorado state champ and former NCAA champ after lifting weights and biking to Cottonwood Pass (while most people with chronic symptoms of my disorder can not even get off the couch). Of course, I have to mix in a some work and volunteering as well. Maybe this is not an advocacy group per se, but there are so many dangers to joining groups. We get brainwashed and for the most part in a bad way. Most people conform, but when someone tells me I cannot do something or achieve, I want to prove them wrong. Most people only care about the end result - either you agree or disagree with me or even worse, more extreme thinking like Dr. Pete - you are good or evil. Unfortunately, nobody is interested in how people came to their conclusions. I find, I may agree with a person's philosophy, but I disagree about how they draw those conclusions. Conversely, I have found that I may not agree with a person's conclusion, but understand how they came to that conclusion (maybe environmental concerns). These are the dangers of following or joining an advocacy group - brainwashing, dumbing down, quitting, avoidance, losing, bureaucracy, big government, and following. I see no advantages. Maybe it gives more volume to your voice, such as what Dr. Pete suggests - which is the same concept behind Unions.

    2. I think the differences between support groups and advocacy groups may be getting muddied in this discussion, Patrick. I would guess that support groups vary in their usefulness and I can certainly see why you didn’t care for the ones that you joined but at least they don’t impact anyone other than those who voluntarily join. Advocacy groups have the potential to impact all of us, so I’m far more concerned about them.

      In drpete’s defense I don’t think he was advocating gov’t funding for advocacy groups. I think the current situation in which special interest groups are allowed to meet with our representatives to lobby for their own interests leaves people who want to have an equal voice in their gov’t little choice but to join forces so that they can be heard as well. As your series points out, that’s not how things should work but unfortunately it is the way of the world at present – only the squeaky wheels get greased.

    3. CW, my point the support group is that even they are impacting everyone just as advocacy groups. Yes, advocacy groups are worse, but even support groups are influencing and brainwashing people for the worse. If people, who can still work, decide to go on disability, then in the long run we all have to pay for it and it makes us weaker as a nation.

      My point is that if support groups can negatively impact society even a little, then think of the damage advocacy groups can do. And lets not forget many support groups for many medical ailments are armed with lobbyists to get tax funding for their cause.

    4. Maybe I should put it another way since my English is very poor in the last post. Would it be fair for my support group, for my neurological disorder, to advocate and lobby governments for money - to find a cure and to bring more attention to the disorder? My position is no, otherwise I would be a hypocrite. I am an accountable person - unfortunately, most people like Dr. Pete only cares about himself - I am, for the most part, fed up with smugness. I have put up with for too long. However, most people, in fact, everyone else in my support group would say yes. I have become the spokesperson for our ailment and I am doing so on my dime and I am trying to change how people live. I answer dozens of calls and emails a day and my study is approaching 500 participants. This is what I mean by trying to lead and lead by example, and not lead or follow on the person's dime.

    5. Advocacy groups and support groups have one other important thing in common. The teach to stop thinking and advocating for yourself. Instead, we rely on others to think and advocate for ourselves. It used to be if you wanted someone else to think for you, you voted Democrat - but that is not the case anymore. Yes, there is a difference, but they both have the same effect on the American intellect.

      The big difference between Dr. Pete and myself is write opinion, Dr. Pete thinks what he writes is fact and gospel.

    6. >>”If people, who can still work, decide to go on disability, then in the long run we all have to pay for it and it makes us weaker as a nation.”

      That’s a very good point. Problem is, as long as people have that option human nature is such that some will always take advantage. The best way to resolve it, IMO, is to take away the option. And the best way to do that is to elect fiscally responsible, limited gov’t conservatives and to continually demand that they adhere to the Constitution.

      The answer to your question is no, it’s not fair for your support group or any support group to lobby congress for money for their special cause. If they do, they cross the line from support group to advocacy group. I think we’re in full agreement on that. As far as smugness goes, I can’t blame you for rejecting that.

    7. As usual you are right CW. The government needs to take away these options so advocacy groups do not exploit what they call "free" money.