RationalWiki talk:What is going on in the world?

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[edit] Blaming the victim

The entry on the prisoner in North Korea seems to be on par with statements I've seen many people refer to as victim blaming. I'm curious of anyone can explain a real difference. DickTurpis (talk) 20:03, 16 September 2014 (UTC)

Mostly it's matter of purpose, people who are blaming women for being raped cause they tempted dem menfolk and people calling you an idiot for visiting north korea with the single purpose of asking for asylum are doing two different things because the latter is an actual idiot while the former is just sexism. Unless the story is a lie, at which point then yah it's victim blaming. --Miekal 20:07, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
OK, but if someone were to have posted the entry "Of all the places to store your nude photos, online is a pretty shitty choice," I imagine there would be a minor shitstorm. Is the difference that the North Korea example was several orders of magnitude more foolish than the other? DickTurpis (talk) 20:14, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
For me, it's the equivalent of going to a predominantly Black gang dominated neighborhood and yelling racial slurs everywhere, you got what you earned for your dumb effort. Storing photos onine isnt dumb, because you have a reasonable expectation of security, visitng north korea, tearing up your passport, and asking for asylum is not reasonable to expet anything than something insane.--Miekal 20:23, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
Storing such photos online might not be dumb, exactly, but we've all read enough reports of hacks to know that relying on the security of the cloud for these sorts of things is perhaps unwise. It at least is well out of the "no one could have foreseen this" realm. So how stupid does one's action have to be in order to make it okay to blame them for their result? DickTurpis (talk) 21:16, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
When it's "ill go to north korea instead of staying in america"--Miekal 21:57, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
Right up there with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the foot. Alec Sanderson (talk) 22:38, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
Did Miller actually tear up his visa, or is that just what NK said? If he did, is that a crime worthy of six years in a labor camp? Was he really a spy, or is NK just paranoid/looking to drum up some outrage among the people? So, do we know if it's Miller's fault? I'm far from an expert on the matter, but I don't think North Korea has the world's most transparent legal system. What he is accused of could be a load of bullshit.--"Shut up, Brx." 23:58, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
I don't think it's actually possible to know whether he actually did all of this stuff, at least at this point in time. And, regardless of whether tearing up a passport is llegal" grounds for 6 years hard labour in NK, I think that, realistically, anybody acting remotely strangely can be punished for something in that place. THE GREAT RIGHTEØUS DESTRØYER Raining blood, from a lacerated skyDolan.png 22:41, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

The iCloud thing was discussed at length here. Not really a shitstorm, but there was a little friction between people blaming celebs for storing their photos online & people pointing out that this was blaming the victim. Re the guy in North Korea, six years hard labour in NK is going to be hell & deserving of some compassion, IMO. On the other hand, he did admit at trial that he intended to experience prison life in NK to get an insight into the country's human rights situation, so "be careful what you wish for" style comments aren't totally out of line. Things being as they are in North Korea, we don't know how accurate & complete what's being reported is nor what kind of persuasion was used to get this confession, but it seems like this guy has behaved very bizarrely & most likely has some issues, whether that be political or psychological. WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 23:32, 16 September 2014 (UTC)

+1 MĖSSIÅH ØF DØØM …But spirit is foulest, devoid, askewDolan.png 22:42, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

[edit] "God rewards the faithful by collapsing a building on them"

Speaking of blaming the victim. . . .

Dozens of people were killed in this incident. Are we supposed to gloat about it because it was a religious building? WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 10:25, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

It's pretty nasty to gloat about it. It is yet one more case (on a really long list) of some sky god not protecting his own people when they come to grovel and sing his praises and beg him for favours. No where is safe from the indifference of god. But it's still rather douchey to laugh at some people dying in a collapsed building...even if they were wasting their Sunday afternoons. --91.176.221.125 (talk) 12:34, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Interesting thing (to me) about the Scotland vote

Just something that stood out to me, but I don't know enough about Scottish politics to know if this is particularly surprising. Only one of the constituencies that previously voted for the Scottish National Party actually went ahead and voted Yes for independence. Just struck me as an oddity. Then again there are more than 2 options on elections so that's probably making the comparison odd. X Stickman (talk) 17:50, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

That is the problem when you present voters with a yes or no option. Osaka Sun (talk) 18:03, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I’ve lived in Scotland for many years now and the politics is never quite as straightforward as might be assumed. Some Scottish National Party supporters see them as either good administrators or fighting the Scottish corner, or both, without actually wanting Scotland to leave the UK. From memory of a recent poll around a quarter of SNP voters said they intended to vote No, i.e. to remain part of the Union. Conversely, and as is always the way with these things, some who might be assumed to be natural unionists voted for independence. JumboWhales (talk) 20:21, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
My theory is that what took some of the Yes votes wind was that the vote turned from "Independence or status qou" to "Independence or more devolution". Had that not happended, i think more people would have voted yes or atleast less people would have voted for no.--Miekal 20:50, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Which is causing discontent in England, already those living in Wales, NI and Scotland have more constitutional rights than those living in England. I have no problem with full devolution at all but the West Lothian Question needs answering, and in favour of England.--Mercian (talk) 21:18, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
England as a whole, or England regional? And Cornwall? I, from what my English friends think, wouldn't be up for what amounts to the same thing now, just without the other countries mps--Miekal 21:43, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
One of the reasons why "English votes for English laws" is still being punted has been the consequences of restricting the voting power of Scottish MPs, Labour or not. If you're going to go the Canadian federal route (please, take all of our ideas), a reminder that we didn't do this. Osaka Sun (talk) 22:18, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
There is not enough support to mandate regional assemblies in England, this was proposed by the Blair government and put to poll in the North East but was overwhelmingly rejected. Cornwall, being traditionally celtic have some who want devolution but it is a small minority and there is very little call for independence. I used to be an English Nationalist (please do not confuse that with British Nationalist) but have changed my position in the last few years but these issues do need resolving. A federation may be something worth exploring.--Mercian (talk) 22:38, 19 September 2014 (UTC) (talk) 22:35, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
English devolution isn't something I would welcome. It would just be opening the door to more UKIP/EDL parochial small-mindedness, something that we've got too much of already. WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 23:58, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
PR might have a road to go down if we hadn't fucked it off via referendum. So that's English devolution and pr keyboshed before we even knew we might want them. Doesn't leave many options. You know what else we should do? Actually go out and vote at elections so we at least whatever arsehole in no. 10 is there because more people voted for em and not because we couldn't be added to get to the polls. AMassiveGay (talk) 09:53, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
The one good thing about the Scottish referendum is that it seems to have engaged a large proportion of the population in political debate, even if some of it was more about emotions than issues. I would like to see a similar engagement south of the border because you can't really whine about the government if you sat on your lazy arse and didn't vote. I realise that not everyone can find the time on the actual day but as someone who is frequently out of the country for several weeks at a time, that is exactly why I signed up for postal voting. Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic? Moderator 09:22, 22 September 2014 (UTC)
If more devolution occurs, you're essentially throwing England to the Tories. And if you devolve powers to England, then eventually the sane, non-Tory-stronghold places (the North, Cornwall to some extent) will want devolution so as not to be saddled with Thatcherite policies. There may be no actual campaigns to devolve power to the North, but it may well breed a hell of a lot of resentment. Eventually, it will just foster alienation, and that is something that Britain doesn't need more of. (Agrajag (talk) 21:26, 25 September 2014 (UTC))
Exactly. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:59, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

[edit] ECHR

Particularly appalling given the ECHR was largely not merely a British invention, but a British Tory invention - Anthony Eden's government - David Gerard (talk) 21:36, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

... and it's from a year ago. Never mind me - David Gerard (talk) 21:37, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

[edit] RSS Icon

What happened to it? All I see is "15px". Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic? Moderator 21:54, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

Part of the recent commons image flakiness? Wikipedia keeps a local copy of it, because it is used there a lot. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 21:59, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Women are Against Islam Article

I don't know if it needs to be said, but the article is satire. On those grounds, should it be in WIGO? Shouldn't it go under blogs? AyzmoCheers 16:08, 28 September 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Sensationalized Jesus bit

The percentage of humanity with absolutely no reference made to them in historical texts is a percent sign followed by a fair number of nines. Going back as far as Roman times, that even includes local rulers, military leaders, and other people who you could call "rather important". That's not to say Jesus did exist in any form. The questionability of the idea is quite substantial, but the article we just linked is clickbait, taking an important analysis and delivering and extreme and obviously controversial position as the headline to drive traffic. Probably from skeptical sites like ours. Ikanreed (talk) 19:42, 30 September 2014 (UTC)

To say that our coverage on the historicity of Jesus and the Jesus myth theory has been poor is an understatement. We can go to great lengths on the exaggerations of Jesus' life, but we're in denial if we continue to peddle the idea that the guy was made up. Nothing has poked holes in the general consensus by historians yet. Osaka Sun (talk) 19:54, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
Here's the thing: historical consensus is driven by the historical method. Unlike the scientific method that can always go back to the experimental well for another bucket of data, history's sources tend to be permanently limited, and even shrink as potential archeological finds are destroyed in various ways. This means in the historical method, things are driven by a preponderance of evidence. A single positive attribution of "X existed" is usually a good enough criteria for treating something as a historical figure. What this means to me, if not you, is that it's merely best practice for the collective body of history to treat Jesus as a real figure unless there's a reason not to. But if you're asking the question from the framing of genuine certainty, there's not a lot of solid reason to believe the proposition "Jesus was a real person from Judea."
Oh, and you've updated your text to make an even stronger claim about what RW is doing with respect to Historical Jesus denialism. "Peddle the idea that this guy was made up" is just... no. ugh Stop editting your post, Kendoll. Ikanreed (talk) 20:06, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
"'Peddle the idea that this guy was made up' is just... no." Read the opening paragraphs on both of those articles. Osaka Sun (talk) 20:16, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
I diiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiid. Come on. They're all pretty reasonable about the notion that they're contesting an idea, rather than stating a fact. Ikanreed (talk) 20:41, 30 September 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Michael Dunn

Thank gawd. And it's refreshing to read that the jury convicting him was mostly white. There's hope for humanity after all. I just hope he doesn't get the death penalty. The last thing we need is more death coming out of this affair.

Just one question: isn't first degree murder premeditated? How much time did he have to premeditate, exactly? Or do I not understand first degree murder? I aint no lawyer. I used to want to be a lawyer, before I dropped out of high school. But ultimately I realized that I sucked at arguing and that I was not capable of buckling down and doing the necessary studying (although now that I've been diagnosed with ADHD and am treated for it, that's much less of an obstacle).

Funnily, I used to think I was good at arguing, but I eventually realized that I was really just stubborn and that what I thought was me convincing people was really them agreeing with me just so I would shut up. I learned this reminiscing about an instance where, I, as part of my school's Amnesty Club, was trying to get a friend to sign a petition to free Aung San Suu Kyi. I spent three days worth of lunch periods trying to convince him to sign the petition, telling him it was the moral thing to do. After those three days, he finally relented and signed it. I then held that up to myself as an example of my skills as a master debater. It was years later that I realized he was just tired of me hassling him and signed the petition so I would leave him alone... A humbling moment, but necessary.

Have I mentioned that my ADHD medication tends to make me talkative and long-winded?--"Shut up, Brx." 21:28, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Oral sex with Jesus

The kid who simulated felatio with a Jesus statue should be tried today, see 'Christianity Under Attack!' Teen Faces Jail for Lewd Pose with Jesus Statue. How easy will it be to find out what happens? Proxima Centauri (talk) 16:29, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

Probably pretty easy because it's a court case that has gotten media attention?--Miekal 16:30, 3 October 2014 (UTC)
Here ya go. 350 hours community service, 6 months probation, curfew, etc. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 17:47, 3 October 2014 (UTC)
How do laws against desecration being enforced even remotely count as "Christianity under attack"? UGH. "I'm sorry if I offended you by jailing someone unjustly" Ikanreed (talk) 19:00, 3 October 2014 (UTC)
Uh, "Christianity under attack" was the D.A.'s comment on the crime, not the trial. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:44, 3 October 2014 (UTC)
I know, but how can anyone seriously say that in a place where they arrested this kid? Ikanreed (talk) 13:53, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
1) Persecution complex 2) For something in power, being disrespectful to it's images is, to it, "being under attack" on a moral level; . I can't think of a better way to say this at the moment,m to early. --Miekal 14:08, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Arguably it is an attack on people's beliefs, in the same way as Everybody Draw Mohammed Day or Jesus with erection etc. These things tend to be protected under freedom of speech, and if the kid had just shared a cartoon of Jesus felating him instead of a photo there would be no story. What apparently makes this a crime (according to local laws) is desecrating a public religious monument, although I think the fact that he then shared the photo on social media, thus bringing it to a much wider audience than just whoever happened to witness it at the time, is what prompted legal repercussions. All rather paradoxical since similar imagery shared on social media wouldn't have been a crime if it didn't involve a real monument and since the media attention surrounding the trial has obviously brought this image to a much greater audience than the mere Facebook trending would have done. WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:29, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Pluto

I just hope that if they un-demote Pluto they promote Eris, Haumea, Makemake, and the like to planethood too. But something tells me they wouldn't want to do that, which is one of the reasons they demoted Pluto in the first place.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 21:03, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

Pluto is not going to be promoted. It was a vote by people who went to a discussion about what it means to be a planet. It has no actual bearing on Pluto's status. AyzmoCheers 21:20, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
I say make 'em all planets and rename them after baleful gods of death and the underworld. That way we can complicate the lives of astrologers immensely, and astrology needs more malefic planets. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 02:00, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
Ah the day when you can tell someone to go to Hel, and mean it. Ikanreed (talk) 20:11, 10 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Curfews for men

It's going to be turned into a thing by MRAs and they're going to blame feminists, even though the feminists interviewed in the article are trying to argue about the nuance of how assaults happen, and that it won't solve the problem. Just pretend this went into rationalwiki:predictions, because there won't be much time to vote before they do so. Ikanreed (talk) 20:14, 10 October 2014 (UTC)

Basically I found this article, thought the idea it talks about was so ridiculously stupid that it had to go somewhere in the WIGOs. I was going to put it in clogs, but the actual website the article was on seemed fairly neutral and I didn't want people to think I was attacking the site or whatever, so I just put it in the World. I originally put something like "Good God" in front of the link establishing that I was against it, but then I was afraid that complaining about a curfew for men in Columbia might come off like complaining about women-only transport in Iran. So in the end I overthought it and just made the title a generic statement. So that's the story behind it if any one's curious. I didn't have any agenda in mind, other than highlighting a really stupid idea.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 23:16, 10 October 2014 (UTC)
I honestly don't see it as so stupid. There's no harm in giving it a shot. On the other hand, the comments on the article are all from furious MRAs who insist that it is evil, will destroy society, and that they, as "trans-crustaceans" should be allowed to wander the streets with their "lobster brothers". Honestly, I think it should be interesting to see how it turns out. In the meantime there's no point focusing on it. AyzmoCheers 00:23, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
What does 'in the meantime' mean? The curfew night was yesterday. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 01:07, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
I can't really imagine anything more condescending. "You are male; therefore, you are a violent predator who has to be kept inside for the good of society. You cannot be in this public space after a certain time". If it were ever seriously implemented anywhere else(which it almost certainly won't be), it would be an infringement on basic personal liberty. Even "giving it a shot" is pretty harmful. But it doesn't look like it'll catch on, so I don't think we have to worry too much :D . The worst immediate effect is that it gives the damn MRAs more ammo. Also, what is a "trans-crustacean?". (Agrajag (talk) 01:55, 11 October 2014 (UTC))
It kind of bothered me that the feminists quoted in the article say that it enforces negative stereotypes about women (as if that's the worst part about it).TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 02:49, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
One of the things about stereotypes, is that when you're engaging in them, they're implicitly going both ways. Stereotypes about women being housewives, for example, make men who are homemakers into failures, weaklings, or some other nonsense. My belief is the more you make statistically gendered problems about gender, the worse you're going to make them. Ikanreed (talk) 13:04, 13 October 2014 (UTC)
I'm not saying it's really good for women either. But forcing people by law to stay in their homes is inevitably going to affect those people worse than it would those exempt.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 23:58, 13 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] USU terror threat

“Feminists have ruined my life and I will have my revenge, for my sake and the sake of all the others they’ve wronged.” This has ostensibly nothing to do with video games, nor is there any indication that there is more than one troll/idiot making this threat. The item headline is dishonest conjecture. Whatever (talk) 12:29, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

Except the threat mentioning Gamergate, of course - David Gerard (talk) 14:20, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
There's already a discussion about this stuff in the Saloon Bar: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/RationalWiki:Saloon_bar#Video_games_and_violence. No need to continue this thread. Nullahnung (talk) 16:04, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Chemo and Cultural Respect

I'd been forwarded this article I posted on the WIGO by a friend of mine and thought it was an interesting moral question.

Personally, I think she should be required to take chemo. As well meaning as the parents are, this isn't worth a life. It's not an overstepping of bounds of "White Western culture" (science is science, regardless of your background), and the culture and traditions of the Iroquois Six Nations aren't going to suddenly crumble if children are required to have modern medical treatments. It's the same reasoning behind requiring Christian Scientist parents to seek medical treatment over faith healing. (Sorry if it's worded weird -- It's 3AM and I'm about to collapse) Noir LeSable (talk) 07:07, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

Native Canadians go to the doctor and the hospital every day (especially when they have broken bones or other trauma). The idea that powdered herbs can cure cancer is not an integral part of the aboriginal world view. This is total full out child abuse. Sanctioned by a sympathetic judge. --91.176.225.45 (talk) 00:53, 19 October 2014 (UTC)
So science is relative too now. Fuck. (Agrajag (talk) 19:35, 19 October 2014 (UTC))
The judge says maybe the kid can choose not to consent. Sure, why not. The evidence suggests that typical adults aren't able to meaningfully consent to medical procedures, but the present law requires us to pretend they do anyway, so why not kids too? I'm sure an eleven year old can go through the motions, listen to what a doctor says (well, simulate listening, look at them, nod attentively, it's not important to understand what they're telling you because they have spent years studying this stuff and you're really not interested) and then say "No thanks". That's good enough for the law if an adult does it, why shouldn't an eleven year old get the same benefit of the doubt? Sure, she'll probably die. People demand the illusion of free will, and that illusion has a price in blood, so be it. Tialaramex (talk) 10:42, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
The 5 year survival rate for Leukemia among children under 15 is 70%. I'm sure this varies depending on the kind of Lukemia and the treatments given and many other factors. The survival rate (more than five years) is not as high but it isn't even close to as dire as you claim. If the girl was told honestly that the herbs she will take likely will (likely) have zero effect and that chemo therapy might extend her life then she may make a different decision. In any case its absurd to claim that children are capable of making adult decisions. Her mother is incapable of making a rational choice and prefers her own total superstitious woo over the well being of her child. That's abuse. --Shabidoo (talk) 20:10, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
The article seemed to suggest that there was some other sort of tribunal to which the hospital could have applied, which seemed odd, but may well be true. ("Even if the hospital had determined she was too young to decide, they should have gone to Ontario’s Consent and Capacity Board to resolve the dispute, he said.") This is a routine lawyerly way to pass the buck.
The procedural context was odd: the hospital was asking, not that the girl be ordered to chemo, but that the local child and family services agency be forced to intervene. They elected not to. The judge chose not to order them to. It may well be that the judge's hands were tied; the hospital sought an order that the law did not allow for. The multicultural mummery may be an attempt to rationalize a decision in a difficult case in which the court found it had no power to intervene. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 17:08, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
Don't you think that that was a damn dangerous rationalization? In this case it might not be so serious. Chemo is pretty ineffective, and maybe the kid would have a better death without it. But the precedent that it sets is terrifying - what if it's not chemo (delaying what is generally the inevitable) next time? What if it's a vaccination, it's a Lyme disease treatment, its a tuberculosis treatment? Something that can be treated effectively? Because some person has the triple misfortune of being a child, being born into a group that subscribes to some particularly moronic belief, and being infected with an easily curable disease, should that deny them their right to be treated? The notion that the rules magically change for you because of your birth is antithetical to everything that nations like the US and Canada are supposed to stand for. This precedent is truly harmful, no matter how petty the reasons for it. (Agrajag (talk) 19:37, 20 October 2014 (UTC))
Yes, it would have been better if the judge had omitted it entirely. Child protective services people are usually underfunded, and a certain amount of triage comes with the job. In order to actually do the work, they need a whole lot of discretion. The hospital sued to compel them to act in this case. The judge found that he had no authority to grant the hospital the judgment it requested. That could and should have been it. The report of the judgment also suggests that there was some other provincial authority with specific powers to order medical procedures for patients unable to consent, and for whatever reasons, the hospital did not apply there. That too might be fatal in ordinary litigation.
Realizing that such a decision may sound harsh, and the effect of his lack of authority may be that the child dies, the judge adds irrelevant collywobble about how much he respects Native traditions. Given the details provided by the story itself, all that apparently is dicta. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 02:23, 21 October 2014 (UTC)

[edit] Sally Morgan

While the Mirror's page is new, I'm convinced this is the same incident which took place one or two years ago. Both involve a woman misunderstanding the photograph event and Sally getting in contact with their 'spirit'.-- Forerunner (talk) 14:48, 21 October 2014 (UTC)

Darnit! Got a cite to that? - David Gerard (talk) 14:56, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
Mirror's page ≠ new - Dated @ top 26 May '14 Scream!! (talk) 15:06, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
I knew it was familiar. I guess I was instead thinking of Merseyside Skeptics' critique of her, where most of her shows revolve around someone hanging themselves against a door; dead babies, and a deceased drug addict showing her his memory of being forced to flush all his narcotics down the toilet by his parents.-- Forerunner (talk) 15:12, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
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