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(Huffington Post)   Despite what mass media and your gut tells you, historically, the world has never had it this peaceful   (huffingtonpost.com) divider line 109
    More: Interesting, Global Conflict, Steven Pinker, better angels, IQ tests, hair salon, statistics  
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3629 clicks; posted to Geek » on 31 Jan 2013 at 10:56 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-31 10:07:14 AM  
Its true.  I haven't seen a Highwayman in years.   I can walk around without a sidearm almost everywhere.

On the other hand, rural guys who can't fit into the big city and wind up shooting innocent people to get even, we've had several of those in recent years*

Over all we're safer, but random asswits with assault weapons is probably at an all time high now.


* Cafe Racer massacre; Kyle Huff's massacre; the Jewish Legal Foundation massacre .. 3 high profile Seattle crimes where a lone misfit asshat (2 white, one islamic) decided it was every one else's fault but his own that life sucked, and took out revenge on innocent people, armed to the teeth.  Kyle Huff shot up a house party that had teenagers, Cafe Racer's killer had 10:30 am bistro customers and staff, and the Jewish Legal Foundation (his name was Haq) killer had office workers who had never met the shooter.  Haq's parents were high pressure "Y U No Get A" types, and Haq was a failure at life engineering student dropout who dad had pulled strings to get out of misdemeanors before.

In all 3, massive amounts of personal weaponry were the difference between a lone dipsh*t and five to 10 dead innocent people.
 
2013-01-31 10:15:58 AM  

Generation_D: Its true.  I haven't seen a Highwayman in years.   I can walk around without a sidearm almost everywhere.

On the other hand, rural guys who can't fit into the big city and wind up shooting innocent people to get even, we've had several of those in recent years*

Over all we're safer, but random asswits with assault weapons is probably at an all time high now.


* Cafe Racer massacre; Kyle Huff's massacre; the Jewish Legal Foundation massacre .. 3 high profile Seattle crimes where a lone misfit asshat (2 white, one islamic) decided it was every one else's fault but his own that life sucked, and took out revenge on innocent people, armed to the teeth.  Kyle Huff shot up a house party that had teenagers, Cafe Racer's killer had 10:30 am bistro customers and staff, and the Jewish Legal Foundation (his name was Haq) killer had office workers who had never met the shooter.  Haq's parents were high pressure "Y U No Get A" types, and Haq was a failure at life engineering student dropout who dad had pulled strings to get out of misdemeanors before.

In all 3, massive amounts of personal weaponry were the difference between a lone dipsh*t and five to 10 dead innocent people.


Thanks for a typically American answer by redefining a more peaceful world as false because of a singular American act.
 
2013-01-31 11:02:37 AM  
Despite the constant shrill shrieking of media types, children are safer out of doors now than the average farker was back in the days of Commodore-64s and Missile Command.
 
2013-01-31 11:03:42 AM  
At least the violence isn't organized as much anymore. It's not like we're in the middle of a world war or anything.
 
2013-01-31 11:04:25 AM  
Pax Americana
 
2013-01-31 11:06:47 AM  

StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana


It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.
 
2013-01-31 11:10:01 AM  

give me doughnuts: Despite the constant shrill shrieking of media types, children are safer out of doors now than the average farker was back in the days of Commodore-64s and Missile Command.


It's sad to think of all the kids these days who don't get the opportunity to explore and do dangerous stuff on their own outside. You know the sort of stuff I got to do as a kid. I'm only 28 but when I was a kid we would hop on our bikes and disappear for the day and nobody questioned it. We'd come back bruised and cut from biking in the woods, climbing rocks, and basically just being kids and my mother would get pissed at us, not for getting hurt or anything but for getting blood or dirt on our clothes. In fact the only time I spent around the house in the summer was bad weather or if I had soccer and needed a drive to the field.
 
2013-01-31 11:12:17 AM  

Nurglitch: At least the violence isn't organized as much anymore. It's not like we're in the middle of a world war or anything.


Can I buy violence organizers at Crate & Barrel?
 
2013-01-31 11:13:16 AM  
Oh, okay, let's stop trying to shoot for less, then.
 
2013-01-31 11:15:38 AM  
Please don't insinuate that the the unpreventable acts of a handful of nutcases don't mean we should take away the rights of law abiding citizens on Fark.

You'll be here all day.
 
2013-01-31 11:28:57 AM  
GAT_00:
Thanks for a typically American answer by redefining a more peaceful world as false because of a singular American act.

He could have just said "Africa", but then he probably would have been labeled as a racist.
 
2013-01-31 11:34:15 AM  
Can't much of this be explained by the fact that Europe is having an unprecedented stretch of not killing one another?
 
2013-01-31 11:34:50 AM  
Lone gunmen may shoot up public places, but don't let the fear mongering set your world view. Violence is going down in this country in spite of the relatively lax weapons laws that we currently have.
 
2013-01-31 11:40:55 AM  

StrangeQ: GAT_00:
Thanks for a typically American answer by redefining a more peaceful world as false because of a singular American act.

He could have just said "Africa", but then he probably would have been labeled as a racist.


Not if you called everyone living there an African American.
 
2013-01-31 11:42:24 AM  

Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.


Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.
 
2013-01-31 11:44:56 AM  

everybodylookattheirpants: Can't much of this be explained by the fact that Europe is having an unprecedented stretch of not killing one another?


They'll be back at it before you know it. This is Europe, after all.
 
2013-01-31 11:46:20 AM  

robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.




Crack a book and read some history, kid.
 
2013-01-31 11:49:18 AM  

robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.


Not BS. US defense spending and the way we use our military to police the world has created global peace. The last time Europe was at peace this long was when the Romans ruled it. The only true hot spots in the world are places the US really does not give a shiat about. Africa, most of the Middle East, parts of Asia, parts of South America.
 
2013-01-31 11:52:02 AM  
FTFA:   The rate of genocide deaths per world population was 1,400 times higher in 1942 than in 2008.

I wonder why that could be.
 
2013-01-31 11:57:59 AM  
Is this seriously news to people?
 
2013-01-31 12:04:01 PM  

Disposable Rob: FTFA:   The rate of genocide deaths per world population was 1,400 times higher in 1942 than in 2008.

I wonder why that could be.


Deflation.
 
2013-01-31 12:28:14 PM  
i try to tell this to my wife all the time.  she doesn't believe me because of all the mass shootings.  i say, mass shootings are horrible and all, but looking at the numbers, we (as a world) have never been safer.  she's like, where are getting these numbers?  you're just making it up!  and I say, the FBI website.  and I still don't win the argument.
 
2013-01-31 12:29:22 PM  
FTA:

Lynchings, which used to occur at a rate of 150 a year, have disappeared.

BRING BACK LYNCH!
 
2013-01-31 12:32:52 PM  
Hmm, wonder how they spun the numbers on this.

The number of people killed in battle - calculated per 100,000 population

Oh, there it is.
 
2013-01-31 12:35:11 PM  

robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.


I'll bite. Who exactly are we threatened by? And before you say terrorists, there isn't a dollar amount that will stop some guy with a dirty bomb hooked up to a cell phone.
 
2013-01-31 12:38:11 PM  

Disposable Rob: FTFA:   The rate of genocide deaths per world population was 1,400 times higher in 1942 than in 2008.

I wonder why that could be.


Yeah that's a pretty farking stupid comparison.

The rate of plague deaths per world population was 10,000% greater in the 1300s than the 2000s!  Looks like we can stop all medical research, we've won!
 
2013-01-31 12:39:56 PM  
I would buy that.  My pappy always said "People fight when they nothing.  If you don't have a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of, what do you have to lose?"

Overall a greater percentage of people have things to lose, buttressed with more governments have the weaponry to keep the peace.

Too bad we still have global trouble-makers.  Think of what could be done without shiatty warlords clawing at every craptacular dirt hill.
 
2013-01-31 12:40:12 PM  
Well, compared to the middle ages gun violence is WAY up, but claymore and broadsword related violence is astoundingly low.
 
2013-01-31 12:51:33 PM  

pute kisses like a man: my wife


pute kisses like a man: I still don't win the argument


Trust me, you will never win any argument.....
 
2013-01-31 12:52:32 PM  

ModernLuddite: Well, compared to the middle ages gun violence is WAY up, but claymore and broadsword related violence is astoundingly low.


What about halberd violence?
 
2013-01-31 12:53:19 PM  
Yes, thousands of people have died in bloody unrest from Africa to Pakistan, while terrorists plot bombings and kidnappings. Wars drag on in Iraq and Afghanistan. In peaceful Norway, a man massacred 69 youths in July.

Wait, what? When did this...

10/22/11 03:31 PM ET

Oh.


J. Frank Parnell: Hmm, wonder how they spun the numbers on this.


Actually perfectly reasonable, even if the total number of people affected by violence has increased, if the number affected per capita is lower then you, as an individual, are less likely to be affected.
=Smidge=
 
2013-01-31 12:59:32 PM  
It has to be said: suck it, anarcho-capitalists. This is why no one wants to live in your primitive fantasy land.
 
2013-01-31 01:00:53 PM  
The fact this isn't immediately apparent to everyone suggests the teaching of history is pretty dire. There is a reason that in the past they had to use religion as a way of trying to stop people killing their neighbors whenever they noticed they had some nice stuff, and we all know that was always about as effective as persuading children to be good or Santa wouldn't give them any nice presents.
 
2013-01-31 01:10:40 PM  
Say what you will about drone attacks, this technology has kept the U.S. from having to send troops into combat, which means far, far less civilian deaths/disrupted lives.
 
2013-01-31 01:10:46 PM  

xria: The fact this isn't immediately apparent to everyone suggests the teaching of history is pretty dire. There is a reason that in the past they had to use religion as a way of trying to stop people killing their neighbors whenever they noticed they had some nice stuff, and we all know that was always about as effective as persuading children to be good or Santa wouldn't give them any nice presents.


To be fair, religious leaders also used religion as a non-violent method for obtaining some of that "nice stuff".
 
2013-01-31 01:15:53 PM  

Egoy3k: give me doughnuts: Despite the constant shrill shrieking of media types, children are safer out of doors now than the average farker was back in the days of Commodore-64s and Missile Command.

It's sad to think of all the kids these days who don't get the opportunity to explore and do dangerous stuff on their own outside. You know the sort of stuff I got to do as a kid. I'm only 28 but when I was a kid we would hop on our bikes and disappear for the day and nobody questioned it. We'd come back bruised and cut from biking in the woods, climbing rocks, and basically just being kids and my mother would get pissed at us, not for getting hurt or anything but for getting blood or dirt on our clothes. In fact the only time I spent around the house in the summer was bad weather or if I had soccer and needed a drive to the field.


Subtract 20 years, make it Little League instead of soccer, and that sounds like my childhood.
The kind of fun where Mom has to hose you off before she even lets you into the house, and rules like "No snakes in the house" get made up on the spot.

*cue the sepia-tones and schmaltzy music*
 
2013-01-31 01:27:52 PM  

Smidge204: Actually perfectly reasonable, even if the total number of people affected by violence has increased, if the number affected per capita is lower then you, as an individual, are less likely to be affected.


Yes, per capita there is less violence. But it does not prove there are less people being killed and less violence overall than ever before, like the article tries to claim.
 
2013-01-31 01:31:49 PM  

J. Frank Parnell: Hmm, wonder how they spun the numbers on this.

The number of people killed in battle - calculated per 100,000 population

Oh, there it is.


How is that not reasonable? The world's population is (so far at least) always increasing. If you don't account for that your results are meaningless.
 
2013-01-31 01:32:50 PM  

sure haven't: Is this seriously news to people?


Yes, yes it is.

"New Media" keeps everyone constantly afraid. Every bad event is broadcast for DAYS.

I live in an affluent rural town of about 8,000 people. The biggest crime of the year (most years) is a burglar or some kid selling pot. Many people don't even lock their house or garage.

BUT....   the freakin school bus stops at EACH INDIVIDUAL DRIVEWAY, even for adjacent yards, because "parents" have convinced themselves there are white vans full of pedophiles scooping up children in giant fishing nets. It was determined that it was "to dangerous" for kids to walk a few yards over at a common driveway and wait for the bus in a group.

What must this teach them about how scary the world is? Jeesus.

When I was in high school (in a shiatty town) we walked a couple of miles and we somehow lived through it.
 
2013-01-31 01:35:36 PM  

J. Frank Parnell: Smidge204: Actually perfectly reasonable, even if the total number of people affected by violence has increased, if the number affected per capita is lower then you, as an individual, are less likely to be affected.

Yes, per capita there is less violence. But it does not prove there are less people being killed and less violence overall than ever before, like the article tries to claim.


If we agree that you've made your nonsensical, overly pedantic point will you stop?
 
2013-01-31 01:35:58 PM  

SkittlesAreYum: How is that not reasonable? The world's population is (so far at least) always increasing. If you don't account for that your results are meaningless.


It's unreasonable because they pretend there is more peace than ever before, when in actuality there is more war than ever, and they're just hiding that detail under population statistics.

If they said something like "each persons chances of being killed in combat are smaller than ever!" then it would be a reasonable conclusion to make using per capita statistics.
 
2013-01-31 01:37:11 PM  

SpectroBoy: BUT....   the freakin school bus stops at EACH INDIVIDUAL DRIVEWAY, even for adjacent yards, because "parents" have convinced themselves there are white vans full of pedophiles scooping up children in giant fishing nets. It was determined that it was "to dangerous" for kids to walk a few yards over at a common driveway and wait for the bus in a group.

What must this teach them about how scary the world is? Jeesus.


Ain't that the truth. I went to my best friend's wedding last spring, and listened to his new sister-in-law (who lives in rural Michigan) talk about how she won't allow her kids to use public restrooms because the pervs are just waiting to snatch them.
 
2013-01-31 01:43:43 PM  
that makes it okay then
 
2013-01-31 01:44:18 PM  
SpectroBoy:
BUT....   the freakin school bus stops at EACH INDIVIDUAL DRIVEWAY, even for adjacent yards, because "parents" have convinced themselves there are white vans full of pedophiles scooping up children in giant fishing nets. It was determined that it was "to dangerous" for kids to walk a few yards over at a common driveway and wait for the bus in a group

This bothers me to an almost irrational level.  I don't even have kids yet, but I feel like there are confrontations looming on the horizon between me and the schoolboards when I let them know just how idiotic their policies have become.
 
2013-01-31 01:53:46 PM  

Burr: pute kisses like a man: my wife

pute kisses like a man: I still don't win the argument

Trust me, you will never win any argument.....


i know...  i've learned that victory is silence.
 
2013-01-31 02:05:52 PM  

Mugato: robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.

I'll bite. Who exactly are we threatened by? And before you say terrorists, there isn't a dollar amount that will stop some guy with a dirty bomb hooked up to a cell phone.


It is not who we are threatened by, it is who we can threaten. The US military, just by existing keeps the lid on a lot of ugly shiat, because it can destroy anybody. Sure a lot of Middle-East and African countries are experiencing war, but face it really just don't give a shiat about those countries. Even then we do tend to offer air support to the side we like, especially when the other side does not have an air force worth mentioning.

Look at Asia, do you really think China plays as nicely as it does with Japan because it fears Japan?
 
2013-01-31 02:07:06 PM  

Slaves2Darkness: Mugato: robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.

I'll bite. Who exactly are we threatened by? And before you say terrorists, there isn't a dollar amount that will stop some guy with a dirty bomb hooked up to a cell phone.

It is not who we are threatened by, it is who we can threaten. The US military, just by existing keeps the lid on a lot of ugly shiat, because it can destroy anybody. Sure a lot of Middle-East and African countries are experiencing war, but face it really just don't give a shiat about those countries. Even then we do tend to offer air support to the side we like, especially when the other side does not have an air force worth mentioning.

Look at Asia, do you really think China plays as nicely as it does with Japan because it fears Japan?


One other thing worth mentioning, do you really think the US would be the worlds reserve currency if it could not back it up militarily?
 
2013-01-31 02:10:02 PM  

t3knomanser: everybodylookattheirpants: Can't much of this be explained by the fact that Europe is having an unprecedented stretch of not killing one another?

They'll be back at it before you know it. This is Europe, after all.


That's why I always find it funny when right wingers make fun of "pansy" Europeans. The deadliest wars and human-made atrocities since the Mongol conquests all started in or because of Europe. The Europeans aren't pansies - they try for peace so hard because they've seen first hand what happens in war.
 
2013-01-31 02:11:38 PM  

Slaves2Darkness: robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.

Not BS. US defense spending and the way we use our military to police the world has created global peace. The last time Europe was at peace this long was when the Romans ruled it. The only true hot spots in the world are places the US really does not give a shiat about. Africa, most of the Middle East, parts of Asia, parts of South America.


So your thesis is that the places that we "do give a shiat about" aren't going to war with one another out of fear that the US will come in and make war upon the war-makers?

Alright, I'm willing to be sold on this idea, if you can back it up. What facts are you bringing to the table to support your thesis? And please don't say, "Well, have there been any big wars in those places?", because that's question begging, magic rock territory.
 
2013-01-31 02:21:58 PM  

Slaves2Darkness: Slaves2Darkness: Mugato: robbiex0r: Slaves2Darkness: StoPPeRmobile: Pax Americana

It is what 700+ billion dollars buys. We could reduce our military spending, but then say bye bye to peace.

Not sure if serious. But I'm going to give you a 8/10, because I'm fairly certain you know this is BS, and people will bite anyway.

I'll bite. Who exactly are we threatened by? And before you say terrorists, there isn't a dollar amount that will stop some guy with a dirty bomb hooked up to a cell phone.

It is not who we are threatened by, it is who we can threaten. The US military, just by existing keeps the lid on a lot of ugly shiat, because it can destroy anybody. Sure a lot of Middle-East and African countries are experiencing war, but face it really just don't give a shiat about those countries. Even then we do tend to offer air support to the side we like, especially when the other side does not have an air force worth mentioning.

Look at Asia, do you really think China plays as nicely as it does with Japan because it fears Japan?

One other thing worth mentioning, do you really think the US would be the worlds reserve currency if it could not back it up militarily?


I really wish the OECD, whose members make up most of the so-called "developed" nations would create a peacekeeping force. When something goes south, the OECD sends in the peacekeeping force and people stop calling the United States a warmonger or imperialist. Basically, we get the blame whenever we do anything bad (which we should) and none of the praise when we do anything right.

I know that sounds borderline jingoistic, but it's true. Hell, the GPS system, run by the USAF, has provided billions of dollars of economic benefit to the whole world. Same with the vast majority of weather satellites - paid for by NOAA and the data is given free to the world. I'd like to see the OECD pick up a bit more of the bill for that sort of thing.

Don't get me wrong, I hate our military adventurism - Iraq, Vietnam, and so on. Those actions were wrong and shouldn't have been done and are things to be ashamed of, but our interventions in Afghanistan, Libya, the Balkans, the Indian ocean, Somalia, Korea, and so on have been boons to the world.
 
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