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Pointless poll

[You chose to β€œTake Goat”] There is no goat in the room. The goat is tied outside the room near the North exit. There is a torch on the wall. Exits are North and West. Do you...

Go North11Vote
Go West2Vote
Go South6Vote
Get torch27Vote
Get eaten by a grue8Vote
Take Long-eared Jerboa13Vote

What's your favorite booze?

White wine3Vote
Red wine10Vote
Box wine2Vote
Lager (real)3Vote
Lager (American, like making love in a canoe)1Vote
Am Mormon, can't drink10Vote
Kefir (fermented goat's milk)1Vote
Goon (boxed wine, but you throw out the box and are also Australian)1Vote

How are you enjoying your new host body?

I enjoy the fine motor control this ape-form provides11Vote
These flesh-balls are a little greasy and smelly for my tastes, but I can get used to it4Vote
AHHH! MY EYES! PLEASE SOMEONE HELP! I mean, ahem, how about this fine weather, fellow meat-creature?10Vote
I once again long for the freedom of silicon, ceramics, and fiber-optics26Vote
The Cycle of the Cleanse can't come soon enough13Vote
To do list

What are your thoughts on "When bad people make good art?"[edit]

I know there are better things to discuss right now, but I was just wondering, what are the thoughts of a rationalist and humanist community on this topic?

A few resources:

β€” The π—¦π—Ύπ—Ώπ˜-𝟭 talk stalk block 07:29, 9 January 2021 (UTC)

So, before I ask questions about Jared Leto, I would like to talk about the band Lostprophets. I heard Lostprophets and I actually liked it, I was like 14. Never heard again until, weird baby rape. I never liked 30 Seconds to Mars, and then, eventually, weird Island cult stuff, but it all worked. Rivers Cuomo has a weird interview where he claims he told everyone who wasn't naked to get out of his hotel room, and it worked, but he is also the Weezer guy who wrote Pork and Beans or whatever it was called. What made Jared Leto an idol? He looks like a discount Jake Gyllenhal, if I managed to spell that right, but 30 Seconds sucked, nobody plays that, who goes to his island? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 08:55, 9 January 2021 (UTC)
I say to hell with moralizing about the sins of artists and creative types. I really don't care about Ted Nugent's politics, he's a musician and his opinions on such matters are no more expert than mine, and no matter how disagreeable they are, they don't change the fact that his first solo record from 1975 is a towering masterpiece. That said, I do have qualms about patronizing the films of Tom Cruise or Joaquin Phoenix on account of their beliefs and opinions, but that's more of an anti-cult thing that has nothing to do with the private sins that usually give rise to that kind of handwringing. Smerdis of Tlân, wekʷōm teḱsos. 13:05, 9 January 2021 (UTC)
Tom Cruise I know about, but I thought Joaquin Phoenix was no longer in a cult. I'm not caught up in this drama, would you mind explaining why you still don't patronize his films? Back on the topic at hand, it all depends on how they make their art. The Triumph of Will was a revolutionary piece of filmmaking, and is still fairly impressive today, but it served a barbarous cause and advanced a vile philosophy. Technically impressive and thematically complex art that expresses the horrible opinions of their creator is in my opinion worse than poorly constructed art, and should be avoided. But good art that is divorced from whatever insane opinions their creator may have shouldn't be forgotten. For example, Thriller is a solid song (in my opinion at least). Whether or not MJ was a pedophile, it will still be a good song. IveBeenFrank (talk) 13:34, 9 January 2021 (UTC)
You really picked Nugent as your shining controversial amoral boy? Well, cool, guess I'll fucking die. At least Frank had the balls to bring up Michael Jackson, whos art should at least be considered as the result of damnable hunger for the next big sweet hit. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 13:48, 9 January 2021 (UTC)
Well, there's Orson Scott Card. He made a pretty influential book series that I read as a kid, I kinda got into his works for a bit and he secretly fed me the SpaceBook of Mormon; the one thing that stuck with me from the SpaceBook of Mormon was a bit of Graph Theory in terms of interpersonal relationships. But the guy himself? A total twat. All writers are to some extant, but this one is just, well, even if I could ignore how rabidly anti-gay the guy was to the point where I'm convinced that he's the first called whenever the National Park Services needs to find a few bears, it only just gets worse from there.
So, should we not read his books? CoryUsar (talk) 21:09, 9 January 2021 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜If I may interject, I'd say that's really up to you. I personally enjoy his work (in fiction, that is) even though the guy is a bit of a prick. Twodots (talk) 21:35, 9 January 2021 (UTC)

@Gol Sarnitt, I never was much of a Michael Jackson fan and would noet mind much if I never heard a note of his music again. Dancepop does nothing for me; AFAIAC it's all still disco, and it's axiomatic that disco sucks. That said, while what little I've read about his life suggests that he had reasons for being as messed up as he was. Understanding is more important than judgment in these cases. Posthumously assuming that he was guilty of crimes he was acquitted of while living is a poor way to treat an African-American, IMO, and fortunately I'm really not interested enough to care one way or another. Nugent, by contrast, was a hard rock icon in the desert years of the mid-1970s and I remain interested enough to care. Smerdis of Tlân, wekʷōm teḱsos. 04:44, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
I understand why numerous pedophiles are as twisted in the head as they are, but some actions are so horrific that no excuse can ever be enough. I don't know for certain if Jackson was innocent or guilty, and I don't think we ever will know, but if did do what people claimed he did his childhood traumas could never be a sufficient justification. CoryUsar (talk) 05:46, 10 January 2021 (UTC)

I personally dont feel it necessary to avoid the works of noted arseholes. if you still get pleasure from music or a film despite who created then imbibe. even if their arseholery is evident in their art, theres no need to never see nor hear it again, it just means you'd need to be aware of issues with a particular piece. even more so if you were to recommend something to someone, it would probably be best to mention a piece has its merits despite its obvious flaws, and be mindful of the fact not everyone will be able to or is required to look beyond its shortcomings.

its not so long ago when everybody was a racist or sexist prick, and their art reflected it. we would listen to or read anything more than a year old if we couldnt look beyond such stuff. shouldnt be too much of an issue if its 'of its time' racism, unless maybe its racist even for its day. i suppose its harder overlook things like that when it comes from a current figure and not from someone long dead from a less enlightened era. if they are current then they should know better.

its ultimately a personal choice. i can listen to micheal jackson but not to morrissey because i'm less invested in michael jackson than i was with the smiths. film or books i have no problems enjoying stuff made by arseholes at all, its jusy easier to do than music which hits on a more emotional level than other mediums cant quite reach.

the only point im a little unsure about is, if the arsehole in question is a convicted paedophile, will listening to their music, reading their books, watching their movies mean i am giving cash to a convicted paedophile? its one thing separating art from its creator, its something else to be paying the cunt. michael jackson was never convicted and is dead. hes not going to profit. gary glitters stuff gets played at us sporting events regularly and hes a convicted rapist. kinda wince when i hear his stuff played knowing he profits every tme. but at the same time, i highly recommend that people should watch chinatown. its just such a good film. directed by a convicted (and on the lam) rapist.AMassiveGay (talk) 21:44, 10 January 2021 (UTC)

This is going to be the start of the bad one. I apologize. I would agree it's a little different when you've invested in art and you look back and see, oh shit, I was invested in an ass, and I was also kind of an ass at the time but I've grown and changed myself. It's a little harder for me when bad people make groundbreaking art and control, or at least direct the art narrative of the time, It's tough for me to get the difference. Like, is it OK to say Nazi scientists made medical breakthroughs? I think the nature of medicine would say, no, medicine does not require unethical sourcing. Is it OK to source art from rapists and pedophiles? Well, the nature of art is different. As broad and wide as the talent spectrum is, for art, I would also say that no, sourcing art does not require accepting unethical artists. There was a really cool interview on Fresh Air with Fran Lebowitz, where she said she didn't like Andy Warhol, didn't talk to him many times but they didn't get along, and explained a big reason behind her dislike was because so many people from his factory died, and not from AIDS because that crisis hadn't hit, but from what she saw it was Warhol's callous and disengaged encouragement of the young peoples' mental instabilities, for the sole purpose of, what she believes, came from his own entertainment by watching people do crazy shit. You never know with these bougie WASPiring art-party grudge keepers. But, I mean, I remember reading Warhol got shot in the gut and one of his members held him crying, and he told her "Don't make me laugh, it hurts." And that's either The Joker level disassociation or Superman level reassurance, but his factory was the 60's New York art scene, madness was kind of the main feature. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:51, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
So many people involved in that scene came to bad ends, starting with Edie Sedgwick. But was also a welcoming space for gay and trans people well before that became fashionable and I am inclined to be indulgent. The victims, too, were products of their time. A far more difficult case is presented by the many intellectual figures and writers who sympathized with Fascism or Stalinism in the era prior to WWII. Ezra Pound is the big one, of course; you also have not only Roman Catholic extremists like G.K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc - the latter could be extremely funny when he wanted to - and also more respected writers like T. S. Eliot, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Henry James. Now the 1930s were a fucked up decade much like recent years, and led poets and creative writers towards the unpoetic distractions of social and economic reforms, and it seemed important for any literary intellectual to take a stand, no matter whether their intellectual achievements were at all relevant or not. More importantly, Mussolini and Hitler looked very different before the revelations of Auschwitz. I am not prepared to lose all of these writers from the reading list because of mere politics. Smerdis of Tlân, wekʷōm teḱsos. 19:44, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
I think I'm using this term right, the Overton Window? Is it possible, and if so is it worth separating these individuals from their works in any era outside of their own? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:36, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
My understanding of the Overton window is that it frames the spread of conventional political opinion; anything within the window is nominally respectable and likely to be heard on mainstream media, while views outside the window are extremist, eccentric, and/or scary. Admiration for Mussolini and, probably still then to a lesser extent, Hitler, were possible things, at least before the war snapped that side shut. And all sorts of Hollywood creatives found themselves in hot water in the 1950s because they made sympathetic, conventional war films about our Soviet allies and their struggle. Smerdis of Tlân, wekʷōm teḱsos. 15:16, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

Biden's Test[edit]

So... I'm wondering just how other countries are going to test the limits with Biden. So far, North Korea has vowed moar nukes, but China still has its eye on Taiwan and Iran is out for blood, new nuclear deal or not. Every President has a crisis that defines them, I don't expect any different with the President-Elect. How he reacts determines what moves others make in the future. Any guesses? CoryUsar (talk) 06:51, 10 January 2021 (UTC)

Dunno why, but I have a feeling in my bones that something big's going to happen between Biden and North Korea in the next four years. Somebody's definitely going to make a move... Twodots (talk) 06:54, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
If nothing else, you are starting to make yourself a nice little home here :P. Don't worry, our servers use lots of lead, we should be safe...CoryUsar (talk) 06:59, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
Yeah, I feel like I'm really starting to get with the flow of things. Twodots (talk) 07:05, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
And New Mexico is in the middle of fucking nowhere; this site should be safe from the nuke they launch before Biden responds by pressing The Button and destroys NK almost completely, leaving South Korea to annex, unbrainwash, and deradiate the rest. But all those of us on the West coast not wearing 2 million sunblock are in danger hehe... --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 07:12, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
The NK/China border is currently closed due to the pandemic, which means no food or other imports. NK is currently facing what could become a famine, which would only be exacerbated by increased nuclear spending. NK also unusually admitted in their recent party congress that their last 4-year plan was a failure (but blamed extenuating circumstances). Bongolian (talk) 07:20, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
Circular, if North Korea decides to nuke even under the threat of Mutually Assured Destruction, they won't just target the US. Tokyo, Seoul, every US-aligned neighbor would receive a red hot nuclear warhead. It would be a humanitarian disaster. And if you get Pyongyang, you won't get the many silos in the countryside ready to keep firing. Electros[goldswords] 13:24, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
what is it people think NK are going to do exactly and why? if anything with biden in the whitehouse tensions are more likely to ease. trump threatened nk with annihilation, its no wonder why nk might feel they need nukes (he threatened iran with annihilation too, and now they are probably looking to get a nuke as well). there was no chance of deal with trump in office. if they are facing famine, then they have something they want help with in return for halting their nuke program. kim talking up their nuclear capabilities and threatening to build more is just laying out his cards for potential talks with your new president. AMassiveGay (talk) 14:07, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
Eh didn't Trump reach a deal with North Korea? He's a fascist don't get me wrong but let's give credit where credit's due.Evilatheistheathen (talk) 23:55, 10 January 2021 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜If by "deal", you mean "alternating between kissing Kimmy Baby's ass and nearly causing WW3", then yeah, sure, he made a deal. In terms of actually doing anything for the people under his tyrannical rule, he ain't done jack shit. Twodots (talk) 00:03, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

Well, the only real goal of engagement is preventing war. Helping the North Korean people is, at best, a happy bonus.-Flandres (talk) 00:06, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
In that case, he still sucks at it- there have been way too many close calls for my liking.

Twodots (talk) 00:11, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

There was one close call in 2017 and ever since US-North Korea relations haven't been too bad. Evilatheistheathen (talk) 13:26, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
What AMG said. The reason smaller countries want nukes is to even the balance of power between themselves and larger countries, to have a chip they can use to avoid invasion or other attack. It's mostly posturing, basically. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 16:02, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
"Mutually Assured Destruction", the doctrine which arguably stopped The Soviets and the US blowing themselves (and the world) up, doesn't really apply between the US and North Korea. It would largely be be "Assured Destruction" on the North Korean side. There is no chance they would be mad enough to go down that road. Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:40, 10 January 2021 (UTC)
MAD also assumes only 2 players. When you have 3 or more, a sneak attack on a coastal city, e.g., some random junker freight ship under a literal false flag, can be used by country A to convince country B that they were attacked by C, and then in the ensuing chaos B and C will wipe each other out while A sits pretty and inherits the world. In the ensuing chaos, B and C won't have nearly enough time to figure out that it was A behind everything.
Furthermore, this presupposes that all players involved actually want to continue existing, and that an apocalypse cult isn't also in control of their own stockpile. It's unlikely, sure, but not impossible, given that not only are there major religions that do believe it is their duty to bring about the End Days, but they already have enough political influence that they are indeed influencing world policy.
But most importantly, people make mistakes. The US has dropped a nuclear weapon on itself at least once (the core wasn't installed, but it still leveled a farmhouse), and it also accidentally bombed the Atlantic at least twice (again, unarmed, but still). And that's what we know of, certainly Russia has some stories to tell over a bottle of Vodka. Every single extra player is just one more moving part that can break, and nuclear weapons aren't tax forms; you can't afford the occasional screwup. CoryUsar (talk) 00:30, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
You kind of haven't really reinforced your case, just sort of pointed out the problems with MAD which Bob pointed out doesn't apply anyway. Like, get your head out of la la land for a moment and actually think through why these countries might want nukes (Hint, it's leverage, it's always leverage and/or power). The answer is they want to force a larger nation to negotiate on their terms. Like, that's almost always the answer. It isn't to nuke "the great satan" it isn't to protect themselves. It's a fucking bludgeon in international negotiations. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:45, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
Uh, what's the case that you think I'm making? CoryUsar (talk) 00:55, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
im no sure it is all about leverage, i think there is a genuine fear for some countries of american aggression. iran only needs to look to its neighbour to see what can happen when you dont actually have WMDs. a nuke for iran wouldnt be mutually assured destruction, not with the us, but if it were to invade the last act of the regime before it crumbles would be make sure victory would be painful for the us or more likely an ally. i would hope collateral damage of a nuke leveling a friendly city like tel aviv say would give the us pause. it also makes the regime far harder, or problematic at least, to undermine or destablise in order to promote regime change. you dont want risk a failed state with fuck knows who running around with unsecured nukes. the us would have shift its entire approach to iran.
it probably is about leverage for north korea, but from what i read they are genuinely fearful of a us attack, so maybe not all leverage. AMassiveGay (talk) 01:55, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
It's always "to prevent US aggression" and never "to prevent Soviet aggression", or simply because the country itself wants to bully and invade other minor countries with impunity. You don't hear about Taiwan or Vietnam trying to get nukes to deter China. CoryUsar (talk) 03:06, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
@AMassiveGay It's very likely offensive and defensive leverage in both cases. Both want to avoid invasion by larger powers (I'm pretty sure NK is also paranoid of Russia and China as well as being paranoid about a US invasion.) and achieve long standing political goals in their respective regions. Both also want the US to fuck off and to take our sanctions with us. That being said, I suspect their next move after that would be to solidify their influence in their respective regions as much as they could, which likely include invading or otherwise acquiring control over neighboring countries. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:55, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
About your last point I could definitely see a Chinese intervention in Afghanistan or Syria in the next few years. Hell already Chinese troops have done patrols within Afghanistan.Evilatheistheathen (talk) 13:36, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
@GrammarCommienk is like a crazy ex threatening to kill themselves if you leave them. they need something to china think NKs complete collapse would be riskier and costly than to continue keeping them afloat. i think they are a less scary prospect than iran having nukes. no better time to renegotiate a nuclear deal when you can lay all blame for recent hostility at trumps door. i read that if israel and saudi arabia insist on a seat at any talks, there is potential for easing tensions all round. no idea on how likely that is
@CorruptUserthe us has the largest and most powerful military in the world. it could devastate most countries secure in knowledge its mainland is out of reach of any reprisals. it has a military presence in dozens of countries on every continent drone strikes could cripple a country without a single us troop on its soil. without going into the rights and wrong of it, the us uses its military - from airstrikes and more recently drone strikes, to covert actions with special forces through to fully fledged invasions, if the us talks about regime change, it should make any country incurring its ire nervous. china is not threatening any country's very existence, with any potential conflicts likely very localised affairs, the exception being taiwan of course, but chinese sabre rattling is just bluster when their strategy of economic integration is being played out. and russian aggression these days is localised to its borders and propping up its allies elsewhere. a nuclear deterent wouldnt really be a practical objective and risks sanctions while the global nature of economics and politics these day makes overt aggression have repercussions that the us would not face. china and russia both have sanctions applied to them for various reasons, where as what sanctions has the us ever faced? some stern tutting at most.
and thats without looking at why iran has every right to be distrustful of the us and fearful. the us toppled its democratic government, propped up a hugely unpopular dictator, slapped them with sanctions, supported iraq in the war that iraq had started, sold iraq chemical weapons which were then use on iran, shot down one of its airliners, and provides military support to both its big regional rivals. the us then invaded two of its neighbours -afghanistan and iraq showing it can will invade its sworn enemy which bush had made clear iran was, with his axis of evil speech, cooperation in afghanistan and in iraq against the taliban and isis respectively saw some thawing in relations, till trump arrived and tore up it treaties and sent in the drones showing iran the us cannot be trusted, all capped off by trump promising the complete destruction of iran, while seeming to be really want war. there are us troops literally on the border, and a drone strike could wipe out their leadership in an instant with impunity. why wouldnt they be fearful? AMassiveGay (talk) 15:37, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜:"china and russia both have sanctions applied to them for various reasons, where as what sanctions has the us ever faced?"

The 1973 OPEC embargo, for starters. And you are ignoring some basics such as the current Iranian government having been basically installed by Carter, who was under the assumption that the Ayatollah was going to be this super-nice Gandhi type. Nope! Incidentally, the hostage crisis was NOT of the Ayatollah's making, but once it happened, the Ayatollah kind of just went with it in part to try and keep his fledgeling support unified. Kind of like if the Capitol Riot had been more successful, Trump would've just rolled with it as El-Presidente. As for the Iran-Iraq war, that ignores that the war was caused by Iran demanding the Shia in Iraq overthrow their secular Sunni overlords. Until that stupid demand, the Persians/Shia were brother-Arabs, as the first major Islamic power to overthrow the European oppressors, but no, Iran had to stir Shi'ite up. And then the grand mosque takeover happened at this time, and Iran was the obvious cause (turns out, nope, just Sunnis that thought the Saudis were too liberal), and, well, Al Qaeda's leadership was growing up during this time, where KSA was teaching about the Shia menace and whatnot. As for Afghanistan, there's evidence that Iran knew in advance and let it happen, so any Iranian complaints about the US in Afghanistan are going to fall on deaf ears. CoryUsar (talk) 16:12, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
so where amongst those half truths and over stating of things makes the us not appear as an existential threat to iran? the smoldering remains of iraq (who similarly had a lack of WMDs at the time of their invasion) with a bellicose us literally on their door step threatening annihilation should be ample reason to seek some kind of deterrent.
it is the US and only the US with the capability to devastate iran in short order. not the saudis, not the israelis, certainly not the iraqis any more. and again, i cant stress this enough, the fate of iraq shows the us can be both willing and capable to really ruin your day with the most spurious of reasoning AMassiveGay (talk) 19:26, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
Cory has proven himself over and over not worth taking seriously on serious topics. Just FYI. β€” Oxyaena Harass 19:28, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
There are two threats, that must be addressed in the first two years that will define the Biden presidency, both are domestic (Covid vaccinations, and right-wing violence). Iran is pushing buttons, but remains interested in a resolution, DPRK is just shit talking, and would get smacked down by the Chinese as an embarrassment if they go beyond that. The US needs a hard foreign policy reset, that likely includes a temporary retreat. And I think it is necessary.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 20:43, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
@AMG Well, Russia could as well; Iran and Russia are not buddy-buddy, even if they occasionally cooperate. Israel may be able to as well, if it came to a nuclear apocalypse scenario. If the Iranians are going by Realpolitik instead of ideology, it doesn't really make sense for Iran to keep harassing KSA or Israel beyond either trying to gain legitimacy among the Arab populace, which could further the wedge between Iran and the neighboring Arab states rather than strengthen ties, or to keep a massive bogeyman for the locals. Actually acquiring nukes would cause KSA to immediately demand nuke protection as well, and depending on the actions of the US, KSA may not trust in the protection of the US's arsenal alone. Same with the UAE. Nukes don't really make Iran safer if KSA, Qatar, UAE, Turkmenistan, etc, are also nuclear powers. Any deterrent advantage that nukes provide becomes less valuable the more complicated things become, and as mentioned earlier, MAD breaks down quickly when there's numerous players and the risk of accidents. From a Realpolitik perspective, Iran really should be looking to avoid hostilities with KSA and the other monarchies, and stop acting like a threat to them.CoryUsar (talk) 20:53, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
'could' is not the same as will, or even likely. more likely russia will continue playing nice with an important trading partner, potential member of EEU, and continue cooperating militarily in syria. sounds like a better bet to me. still the us camping on the corpse of iraq the only real existential threat to iran. israel is not that - even if your money is on israel as the victor in an imagined fight, it would not be easy fight it would not be a one sided affair - that is the point. the saudis are not an existential threat. only the us is. its more than capable and what is important here shows an inclination to fight a war that will leave iran a burning wreck. granted it would likely be a quagmire like afghanistan, but complete destruction none the less. us casualties will be from IEDs and suicide bombings. but few from a stand up fight.
and its not like there isnt serious talk of impending war right now. news headlines from just today report on possible war, trumps presidency was one long escalation and provocation - the history of iran-us relations has been mostly escalation and provocation. politicians do like to talk tough, parts of the voting us public do like a tough talking politician, and when neither will even be inconvenienced by war, they can really get there fill of tough talk. that is why the US is such a terrifying prospect for a country such as iran. few americans will ever experience the horrors of the wars that many of them may have clamoured for. in the name of god, country or just a whim, staying the course means slapping on a support the troops bumper sticker. its military power and the readiness to wield that power by people far removed from the consequences that make the us such a threat. iran has nothing that could bring home to the american public the human cost of their actions, troops in body bags or terrorist atrocities would come to late, iran would still be ruined. it has no leverage. it has no nuke. you dont even have to use it. but it gets everyones attention.
i could not say the what the real effect of a iranian bomb. its dependent on so many things, its anyones guess. this is only my own assessment of why iran wants a nuke based on reading the paper once in awhile. i dont think its an unreasonable desire of irans to gain a deterent. as i keep saying, iraq makes it an necessity, the holy grail of diplomacy. it would certainly see everyone re-evaluating their respective positions.
what i am not saying is that it is desirable for a nuclear iran, nor i am saying they should. and despite the ever present threat, war is far from inevitable. having just ousted trump might be just enough to be able start up a dialogue and dial things down a little. anyones guess how that will pan out at present. iran isnt a blameless innocent in all of this, but neither is saudi, neither are the israeli, and certainly not the US. there is a lot that iran should do, that can equally apply to other players. it could stand to be less antagonistic but so could all...you get the picture. or better yet, why cant we all just get along? - i say that fully intending it to be dripping with sarcasm, but the coming weeks and months will depend on negotiating a new treaty with compromises needing to be made. a lot will essentially be riding on everyone 'just talking it out' which is a similarly ridiculously naive statement but probably also true. AMassiveGay (talk) 00:17, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

Someone should change the nuclear launch codes, Trump cannot be trusted[edit]

I know that Trump is out of office in a week but in that time he could cause catastrophic damage with those nukes. Call me paranoid but with the Capitol Hill Terrorist Event (I am calling it like it is) basically caused by Trump, I would not be shocked if he tried something with nukes. Trump is more unhinged than ever before. --New Year Zombie (talk) 01:15, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

I... would disagree, but Trump really has gone beyond what everyone thought he was incapable of. I do not want to be proven wrong about the nukes, so maaaaybe we should have an extra layer or two of safeguard. IIRC, the President can order a nuke strike, but the order goes to a group of generals, who then all have to agree that the order is Lawful and all. So the real question is, would those generals agree to launch a nuke on behalf of a man who is known to throw underlings under the bus and most definitely won't be their boss in 3 days anyway? I don't think they would, but again, I don't want to test that theory... CoryUsar (talk) 01:30, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
When I was in there was always a little background discussion of what constituted a lawful order and what didn't. It ultimately comes down to "in carrying it out, would you be committing a crime?" Career officers are very likely to view any use of America's nuclear arsenal to satisfy the nihilistic urges of an outgoing president as fundamentally unlawful. Artificius (talk) 01:37, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
(ec)Well, he probably isn't going to kill us all before Biden's inauguration, and anything that could make it more difficult for him would probably be shot down anyway, so I daresay it's not worth the effort. Twodots (talk) 01:45, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
Never mind the nuclear shit, tRump has already been killing us since he set off a ticking time bomb in early 2020 by bungling the COVID response. One of the better estimates is between 130,000 and 210,000 excess deaths from tRump as of around October 2020 (based on a total of 217,000 deaths which we have far surpassed at this point) (COVID-19 pandemic#Trump body count). Much of deaths going forward would also be attributable to tRump's bunglefication because early lockdown/masking would have greatly reduced current deaths. Bongolian (talk) 05:02, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
Imagine that the US is a soccer team. Covid is the enemy team. The whole team, with some bickering, is trying to beat the other team. Trump is the goalie. For some insane reason, the goalie has a sledgehammer, and is shattering his teammates kneecaps. Additionally, he's informing those he doesn't cripple that they should be kicking into their own goal and that the other team, in fact, doesn't even fucking exist. Twodots (talk) 05:17, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
(EC) That's both an under and over-estimate simultaneously. "Over", because many of those people were already higher risk or at death's door, so "1 COVID death" is not the same as "1 random person dying". "Under", because diseases are kind of like baseball bats, in that if you hit everyone with a baseball bat until "only" 5 in 1000 die, you are still leaving many others with permanent injuries. Really, all he had to do was tell his rabid followers to wear masks, but nooo. That to me was something that I found unforgivable even before the attempted coup a few days ago, and was hardly the first thing. Off the top of my head, it's those two, and abandoning the Kurds that I find to each be reasons to never vote for the guy even if he somehow found the cure for Cancer and fixed the deficit. CoryUsar (talk) 05:27, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
In epidemiology, they often use estimated years of life lost rather than estimated deaths to account for younger people dying being worse than older people dying. Bongolian (talk) 05:56, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜If I remember correctly, the launch controls need to have two keys inserted into it and turned- one of which is given to the president, the other to the defense secretary or something. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 16:36, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

Just the idea of Trump having a nuclear launch key is disturbing enough. --New Year Zombie (talk) 21:37, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

I wouldn't trust the guy to take care of a fucking goldfish, let alone enough nukes to kill everyone on the planet several times over. Twodots Annoy me Look, ma! 21:47, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
Trump has shown complete disregard for national security. He should not be anywhere near anything resembling military. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 22:19, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
Cheers to that, RZ. Cheers. To. That. Twodots Annoy me Look, ma! 23:28, 11 January 2021 (UTC)
My future kids will learn about him in history class as a wannabe dictator, who did COVID (already more lives than the Civil War could claim), tried to undermine our democracy and got impeached not once, but twice. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 04:03, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
Umm... the Civil War was 700,000-1,000,000 soldiers, and a hundred thousand or so civilians (including slaves). COVID has killed around 375,000 Americans, more importantly, the Civil War mostly killed people in their teens and 20's whereas COVID is typically killing them in their 70's and 80's. It's not over yet, but once the vaccine sees more use the numbers will level off fast, and we are looking at a total of around 500,000. Which is still a disturbingly large number, but no need for hyperbole. CoryUsar (talk) 06:26, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
Ah, here we go, COVID took out around 1.2m life-years, back when it was around 130k deaths. Roughly speaking, COVID deaths are on average a loss of 10 years of life, and even then I think their estimates are overstated for many reasons, but I'll go with them for now. The average curtate life expectancy of Americans at around 42 (yep), if you want to compare. Even being generous, COVID is like 40 9/11s... CoryUsar (talk) 06:42, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
A better comparison might be the Vietnam War, with an estimated ~60K deaths. Adjusted for life-years I imagine this is possibly worse than COVID-19 still, but this comparison would also allow one to compare the disgraced presidency of Donald Trump with the disgraced, but not quite as horrible, presidency of Richard Nixon. (Trump's probably going to be ranked at or near the bottom of most president lists, in the same bucket as Warring Harding and James Buchanan.) PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 17:19, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
So I'm going to do some stupid math here I know, but bear with me. I predict looking at current numbers as well as daily new deaths that by the time Biden is sworn in, US death toll has easily surpassed 400,000. However, even I'd admit it'd be unfair to blame Trump for all of those deaths. I think the fairest thing would be to compare to European average (since Europe is probably the closest approximate to US in relevant things). Currently, US has (as per Worldometers) 1,174 deaths/1000,000 people. Europe (all of Europe with its population of 741.1 million, not just EU) has about 813. If we blame all of the difference on Trump (which would also be unfair as there are other factors like lack of universal healthcare, but let's anyway...Europe's been a bit of a shit show too after all) of the approximately 400,000 deaths by the time Trump leaves office 123,000 would be on him. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 13:38, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

This might be a logical thing to do as the man is evidently unstable and untrustworthy. But I doubt it would be a legal thing to do. Who is this "someone" who could explicitly take this power from the US president? (Obviously impeachment or the 25th amendment would have this effect, but my impression is that the call is for "someone" to do it now).Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 10:08, 12 January 2021 (UTC) 'A long while back' I read in a New Zealand publication I came across - the undertakers there found that there was 'an inexplicable decline in deaths': after some research (by statisticians and actuaries etc) it was worked out that this was the last impact of WWI - the deaths in question had already taken place: the equivalent 'shadow of WWII' has probably reached its tail end, and the Vietnam deaths will have to start being factored in (as people of that generation start reaching their normal lifespan/the maximum of the Bell Curve). What proportion of the COVID-19 deaths which did occur would have occurred anyway in the period 2020-2025 from other causes (and so there will be an apparent decline in deaths from what would be expected)? (I do know I am simplifying the calculation.)

It is not the person who is evidently erratic/problematic/has issues who is the problem - as they can be allowed for (duties reassigned 'for the present' etc), but the 'slow transition' (is there a better phrase than 'boiling the frog'?), 'the ditherer' who is not capable of finding and working with 'a doer' in tandem, or someone who is capable of gaslighting/manipulation. Anna Livia (talk) 20:17, 12 January 2021 (UTC)

Much of Western Europe is super densely populated and all urban areas are extremely concentrated, in many countries there is close contact, a culture of meeting one another frequently, little personal space, congested public transpiration all recipes for helping the virus explode in the beginning. Europe is not comparable with the sedate lifestyle of America and its far less concentrated and congested living spaces. In any case you would be far better to simply compare the US with Canada which has a relatively similar culture (though less wacky in the whole COVID denial and better with the masks) and population centre concentration as the US. America is in absolute fucking shambles compared with Canada so yeah, leadership obviously seriously matters. If any European country had a leader like Trump who denied the seriousness of the virus and gave out deadly advice all to further their political career...then Europe would be in a truly terrible state. ShabiDOO 14:33, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
I've tried to look at US mostly on state by state level, since most US states are populous enough that they' could be considered countries of their own in Europe. That said, the worst hit parts of US are also pretty densely populated states like New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts (all of which have more deaths/capita than any country in the world). Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 14:48, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
It is extremely difficult to compare Europe with the US. Europe is far more concentrated over all than the US (true you have a few super concentrated downtowns in a couple cities but apart from that you simply cannot compare the kind of density) and their cities are overall far more densely populated, with super used and congested public transportation and in many countries a culture of minimal personal space, frequent contact, the overwhelming majority of people living in small apartments packed together, narrow streets with small sidewalks, a much larger amount of time spent in the streets, far less detached large homes with open gardens/yards and before it was known how contagious it was, a culture of kissing hello and goodbye, far more physical touching between one another, lots of visiting in cafΓ©s/pubs, visiting one another at home (likely helped spread things faster in the beginning) and I could go on. Many European countries had super harsh lock downs (literally no going outside except for groceries and mandatory masks outside) and a few have reinstated those (it's hard to imagine this ever happening except in the rarest of places in the US). The US and Europe might as well be different planets in many ways. As I said...compare with Canada. Why aren't you just comparing with Canada which is contrasting apples with apples? ShabiDOO 15:34, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
@Shabi NYC has a population density of 27000 per square mile. Paris is 20000, London is 15000, and Berlin only 10400. Sure, Europe is slightly more urbanized than the US, but not as much as you seem to imply. Europe also has plenty of inbred backwoods hillbillies types living in West Bumfuck as well. CoryUsar (talk) 15:41, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Uhh...NYC, Paris and London metropolitan area density (not just the very centre of the city "city proper") have similar densities and NYC is the only US city to have a density close to that high. Even dozens of small European cities are more dense than Chicago or Boston. Take a look at this map


Note the enormous red cluster in Western Europe. Europe is twice as densely populated than the US over all and the EU is three times as dense as the USA and has mega dense enormous urbanisations all over Western Europe. A region of Germany has 15 cities that are so tightly packed they are merging into one giant mega-urbanisation. Same with a region of the Netherlands, Flanders, Poland and three regions in the UK. 80% of people in Spain live in small clustered apartments. And besides density, as I said: Streets are demonstrably narrower. Public transportation is used FAR more and is FAR more congested. It is ridiculous to compare the US with Europe. Again...compare it with Canada. Why aren't you comparing the US with Canada? ShabiDOO 16:13, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Canada has huge provinces and I haven't seen data reported with greater granularity.
Nonetheless my "rough hypothesis" would be that Trump's legacy would be COVID's spread in rural American areas, which otherwise would be much less prone to the virus. The COVID infection rate per capita for France, for instance, is decently granular (reported per region), and it seems "very roughly" that it corresponds to France's population density map, in that less dense regions have less COVID-19 per capita infection rates. Even with Canada you can extrapolate that many provinces with no major cities (Nova Scotia, PEI, Newfoundland) have done quite a bit better than territories with major cities (Quebec, Alberta). (Though of course there are outliers.)
COVID-19 would be an issue in urban America anyways, but it's also a major issue of rural America as well. The per capita infection rate of very rural states like Wyoming and North Dakota is pretty terrible looking. These states are extremely rural, way more rural than Nova Scotia. Trump's base is rural. His behavior may have therefore been an influence on the high rural infection rates in America in particular. Such may fall apart under detailed analysis, of course... but the hypothesis seems to match some observations at least. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 16:32, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Hmm... here's an interesting mathematical question that's an aside. What's the average population density for each person? That is, you have 1 person by themselves in a square mile, and 999 people in another square mile, the population density is 500 per square mile but on average per person it's about 998.
Also for your purposes, an even stronger issue is that the average American is younger than the average European, like 38 for the US and 43 for Europe. Canada is 40, so, yes, probably a better comparison than the EU...
EDIT: How did this get left unsigned? CoryUsar (talk) 18:49, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

RW spotify playlist[edit]

I’m making a playlist for u to add whatever songs you like. Idk just thought it’d be fun. here u go A S E L A ཊལྐ 23:08, 12 January 2021 (UTC)

Dan Terminus - Angelus MirrorIrorriM (talk) 23:34, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
ADDED. P good song thanks A S E L A ཊལྐ 23:37, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
Don't Fear the Reaper, Blue Oyster Cult. Twodots Annoy me Look, ma! 23:42, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
Round and Round by Ratt--Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 23:44, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
DONE and also DONE. Good taste. Also u can add things urself if you got spotify account I’m p sure. If u don’t have one just continue 2 ask and I will add A S E L A ཊལྐ 23:46, 12 January 2021 (UTC)
"Science is Real" by They Might Be Giants 2600:1002:B023:77DA:0:56:FB42:4C01 (talk) 00:58, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Oh my Goat that was one of my favorite songs growing up... --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 01:20, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Oh, and I've got one: Country Roads (the destruction theme):
--Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 01:24, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
TMBG song added. Unfortunately that video isn’t showing up so I can’t figure out whomst the artist is! A S E L A ཊལྐ 04:02, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
"The Free Electric Band" by Albert Hammond. Spud (talk) 05:14, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
DONE good song A S E L A ཊལྐ 12:39, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
"Stuck in the middle with you" by Stealers Wheel is a pretty good song ig. UraniumSpoon (talk) 14:52, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
What a tremendous idea, awesome. Aside - My brother and I had a TMBG battle growing up, each of us wanted another one of their albums, we made actual trades just to borrow TMBG CDs between each other. I bought him Here Comes Science for his birthday back in 2009, we were both full blown adults, and it kinda opened up our relationship. Either way, Kodama by Kikagaku Moyo is a really good gentle kinda driving energy track that fits anywhere. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:37, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
(if anyone knows the markup for that thing where u make the comments go to the start instead of being ridiculously indented pls do that for me) but yeah nice songs ADDED You’ll have good taste A S E L A ཊལྐ 12:18, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I can't do that, but next to Sympathy, with these stiffs, I would put that garbage George Thorogood track. But can I request like, not that track? I have an oldies station I can tune into on my radio. But it would be in line, and a good transition. Always tryna get hatred out of my heart, but listening to the same songs every day for 30 years. Don't y'all know them yet?
Gol Sarnitt (talk) 08:13, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Got some questions for the makers of the Doom games[edit]

How is it that in Doom Eternal the Doom Slayer can get delivery pizza and monthly magazines on board a floating space fortress? Also how does the Doom Slayer get a computer out of the late 1990's in the year 2165?

I know that I am questioning video game logic.

Fun fact: the Doom Slayer fortress has a copy of the parody version of George Orwell's 1984 and Animal Farm along with other books that parody classic books. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 23:55, 12 January 2021 (UTC)

What sort of uncivilized backwater decrepit space fortress would it have to be to NOT have pizza delivery, subscription access, and a few antiques ffs?? Come on dude - get real(TM) Aloysius the Gaul 02:23, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Probably from the same place he got his copy of Animal Crossing. And don't try to tell me he doesn't have a copy of AC. Kencolt (talk) 02:34, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

Tulsi Gabbard as GOP candidate?[edit]

Maybe this question is already asked before but what are the chances of Tulsi Gabbard running as a GOP candidate in the future, given how the GOP voter base is disillusioned with the current establishment like Mitch and they look for some fresh faces. At a glance, a lot of young conservatives seem okay with Tulsi's policies and principles which include the recent bill on trans athletes or positions on foreign policy. Do you think she would be a real contender against AOC or some other likely progressive candidates? Dogeatsdog (talk) 06:47, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

About the same as Biden primarying Trump as a Republican in 2016. Hawaii is a small state. Hawaii is an NCAA recruitment hub, and a large portion of its young population enlist in the military, compared to other states, in my opinion because, what are they gonna do, go out of state for college? I'm not big into "vote blue no matter who" but Gabbard does a pretty good job of representing her state as a Democrat, and I think we should at least know who she's representing before we think she's so out of line. My state's got a senator who I didn't vote for suddenly being harassed because, he, as a Republican, said the election was legitimate. Like, don't get ahead of yourself, the GOP constituency doesn't want a Gabbard. They respect her, and I think that's important, again, she does a really good job of representing Hawaii. Keep in mind, it is a requirement of the job anymore to perform theater. The progressive left doesn't want her either, but like, she's not the worst we've seen, I would just as soon expect Republicans to vote Biden as Gabbard. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 08:04, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Highly unlikely. Given that she's on the record supporting UBI, universal healthcare, and a Green New Deal, she'd be tarred and feathered in a Republican primary (I could see lots of attack ads saying things like "if she votes like a socialist Democrat, why isn't she running as a socialist Democrat?"). Besides, I just don't think the activist conservative base would want someone like her.
Conservatives' stance on her is basically "she's one of the good ones". I don't think they'd support her over a taco with an R on it. Additionally, like Gol said, she's a lot more progressive than some Onanist libs give her credit for. Not letting trans athletes competing with women may be an unpopular opinion in progressive circles, but it's more reflective of what the general populace believes, discounting ideology. The mob tends to get caught up and latch onto one stickling position as evidence of not belonging with progressives, despite a wealth of evidence otherwise. Just like how progressives actually thought Kamala was to the right of Bush because "zomg cop bad!" despite her voting record being similar to Bernie Sanders of all people lol. (talk) 22:04, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

Capitol Riots Race Issue[edit]

Maybe the riots would've gone differently had the rioters been predominantly Black instead of predominantly White. Most likely, actually. But the media is doubling down on the whole alleged racial disparity, and I can't seem to understand why. I don't think there are any Leftwingers or Centrists that aren't outraged over the riot. Even many hardcore Trumpers are peeling away from him over all of this, and he's bleeding corporate sponsors like a pro athlete that got caught dogfighting. So what's the benefit of reframing the riot in racial terms? It won't get more people upset at Trump, and it won't chip away at his base. It's either going to direct some of the outrage away from Trump onto some other issue, or it's going to create a lot of pushback. CoryUsar (talk) 19:18, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

I think the difference in policing responses in advance of the coup and the BLM marches last year are being highlighted to show that racial bias in the USA hasn't gone away, and not letting the crap treatment of blacks by "the establishment" disappear into the background.Aloysius the Gaul 19:45, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
The idea is to show the "moderates" that racism is still very real and institutions do protect white people. It isn't about getting people upset at Trump, but upset at how their "perfect" country actually works. 2804:431:C7F3:BE58:5ACD:5335:D626:256 (talk) 19:56, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
And will it be seen that we are too harsh on BLM, or simply not harsh enough on White people? Because I saw the riot and my initial thought was "we needed more protection from these people, because look at how much damage they did, dear god, what if they had been more organized and managed to break into the actual chambers of congress and started lynching representatives?! Oh my god, that guy got into Pelosi's office; I may dislike her but that's basically a burglary.", not "we should have less protection from unrelated groups." CoryUsar (talk) 20:35, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
I get this sentiment. I definitely watched the insurrection and thought those officers would have been within their rights to have killed more than the woman they did. Watching that black officer leading them away from the Senate chambers, he should have killed a few. But the critical thing here, is that authority, especially law enforcement, is more threatened by black people seeking justice, than white people seeking violence.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 05:11, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Well, yeah. The Black people seeking justice are carrying signs saying ACAB or Abolish the Police, and the White people seeking violence are wearing Thin Blue Line shirts and making it very clear that the oversized guns on their backs are going to be pointed at not-the-police. Heck, that 17 year old kid who killed two people during one protest had been giving the cops coffees earlier in the day.CoryUsar (talk) 14:22, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Ok, signs are one things, actions are another. Earlier this year, there was an image of a NY police officer that got separated from his unit, and was in the middle of protestors. Five or six black men, circled him and kept him from being attacked by other protestors. Last week, several police officers were individually beaten, maced, some feared they were going to be shot by the insurrectionists. Almost every single time during the protest during the summer, large groups of people either retreated, or defend themselves from the batons and chemical agents from law enforcement. These fucking people attacked them. Though they talk about supporting law enforcement, what White Supremacists actually support is authority repressing black and brown people, maintaining white control. Several accounts I read indicated that the insurrectionists viewed DC and Capitol police as different, both because they looked different (more black and brown officers) but also weren't like their good old police back home that would be joining them instead. These terrorists, which is by definition what they are, won't be held to account until it's made clear that white people aren't better than everyone else.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 20:53, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Don't forget, one of them was actually beaten to death by the terrorists at the Capitol. Given enough time, with the police being attacked and injured by the White supremacists and protected by Black people and you'll see the handling of each group change. Until then, well, this is what the police see CoryUsar (talk) 21:43, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Seems like the "Boogaloo Bois", who are just anti-authority, including law enforcement, are gaining influence over groups that feign support for law enforcement. It would be legit terrifying for law enforcement to finally realize white supremacists are not their allies after they are explicitly targeted.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:15, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

Impeachment Hearings: The GOP is so damn cringeworthy[edit]

Watching the hearing and the GOP has some very terrible Pro-Trump speeches. Ugh. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 20:30, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

Would you rather they had a charismatic speech that convinced the public not to support impeaching the bastard? CoryUsar (talk) 20:36, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
True, I give you that. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 20:46, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Conservatives in general are very cringey. Twodots Annoy me Look, ma! 21:07, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Something I've wondered ab out all these people saying "Oh but 50-60-70 million Americans are unsure about the validity of the election" is why the "other side" doesn't just come out and say "Well stop telling them fucking lies then - you're the ones making them unsure because you have told them BS!" as a direct answer to such claims rather than just generalized comments. Hit them with it there and then! Aloysius the Gaul 22:03, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
I think the other side is sick and tired of arguing with their crazy uncles at Thanksgiving, and has just given up. "Oh, Obama is building a bunch of FEMA death camps? That's nice, mmhmm, pass the stuffing."
I blame the existence of social media. No, not for promoting bullshit, but enabling even country-folk to meet with like-minded weirdos. A century ago, your neighbor was your friend. Your neighbor a little kooky? Tough shit, it was that or no one, so you put up with them. Your neighbor was a bit weird, but so were you, and you learned to tolerate each other. It was a strange paradox; the rural areas were far more tolerant in their friendships but only allow people they'd be friends with in, whereas in the cities they might allow a wider variety of people in but they'd be friends with a far more narrow band. Now, you don't have to be friends with your neighbor, you can join a TwitBook group dedicated to all your own weirdo ideas. And then the echo chamber gets crazier and kookier... CoryUsar (talk) 22:20, 13 January 2021 (UTC)
Saw a clip of a GOP member saying "the left incites violence too - and it's worse" - and how this showed the Dem's were hypocritical and selective. Apart from being whatabousim, it's fucking obvious that none of the stuff he was talking about was an attempt to overthrow the results of an election!! What a duplicitous prick:( Aloysius the Gaul 00:21, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
The only reason I would like the impeachment hearing to get Trump out of office anymore is so that Trump can't beg anyone who is deluded enough to follow him for campaign donations. Like, that's it, I'm not trying to be nasty or spiteful, I just don't want to see him grift people with the excuse of "I could still be president if you just gave me enough money" anymore. No other arguments, I just don't want to see that and know it worked on somebody's social security check again. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:15, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

Passing thought[edit]

COVID-19 is the butterfly effect made real.

Discuss. Anna Livia (talk) 00:05, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

No Aloysius the Gaul 00:44, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
There are countless instances throughout history where minuscule events end up having monumental effects. I guess that illustrates the random/haphazard nature of human history. Technically, literally everything ultimately comes down to small things leading to bigger things. Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 00:57, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
There exists overwhelming evidence that COVID-19 caused the loss of the 2020 Donald Trump presidential campaign. COVID-19 spread due to random mutation(s) of a coronavirus. So yes, I believe that the random and almost-infinitesimal noise of the universe can cause unprecedented and major flux in the universe. 01:19, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I don't think this is so much a "butterfly effect". A virus is directly related to a pandemic and a natural outcome of it so it isn't like a small trivial event unleashing some larger unexpected indirectly related event. It is more of a "black swan event". You can refer to Nicolas Taleb's work (of the same name) where he discusses how a small number of unpredictable events have an enormous impact and that we don't really take account of these despite how seriously they affect us (both positive and destructive). Problems with not taking it into account include people who take full credit for their successes when chance and unpredictable events can explain a significant portion of it and also us not taking sufficient precautions for serious unpredictable problems like natural disasters, economic crises or health emergencies. ShabiDOO 03:12, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

My Drunk Take on US Politics and Democracy[edit]

I have been arguing with an old buddy of mine, we disagree and fire off digs. We did student congress together back in high school. We're both realists, and he's kind of a left-centrist who calls me a hippie, but he said something that really pissed me off. He said he doesn't trust democracy anymore because stupid people vote, and I am just, so tired of that attitude. Taking into account how reluctant low population states are to get rid of the electoral college, here's my solution.

Dissolve the senate into the house. Give every state 2 extra permanent house seats, don't change anything about senate elections, just put those seats in the house. Replace the senate with an elected judiciary, two judges per state who have to be elected. Anything from the legislative branch would have to pass the judicial instead of a second level of legislation. I mean, nothing is getting past the legislature as it is, and I agree each state would run the risk of judicial theater at the state level, but we already elect judges at the state level. I think it would invigorate democracy and inhibit pure ideological theater.

Please, tear the idea apart, I'm not putting it out because I think it's a perfect plan. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:10, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

In general, I think this is a good idea. The Senate is undemocratic, and gives extra power to small states. California should honestly have 10 senators. It might be easier to just expand the house, that's necessary anyway, but like you add all the sensors plus 75 more seats and I think we`d have a more responsive democracy. -RipCityLiberal (talk) 05:15, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Fun fact: California has a higher population than Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico combined (39.51 million vs. around 38.84 million). That's two senators that represent more people than 24 senators. (talk) 05:26, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Naaah, it makes perfect sense!!!! becuz muh statez ritez!!!! Twodots Annoy me Look, ma! 05:35, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
The issue with that [adding California seats] is it doesn't address the union complaint. I am personally against the electoral college, but there is a cart, which is our idea of a perfect democracy, and a horse, which is our government. There has to be some balance of power in the governance, and I really don't think it's a good idea to assume just getting rid of something that is statistically undemocratic is like, how you run a democracy. The main point is the senate is not working at a legislative level, despite how "fair" it is or is not, those low population states still participate in the union, so I'm saying dissolve that garbage version of representation and make it an active/scrupulous version with just as much power without taking away any of the very important union representation. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:56, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

I can see where you're going with this-- at least I like to think I can-- but it kinda ignores the reason why there's both a Senate and a House. See, the thing is even at the beginning of this wonderful thing we call a... whatever the hell we call it (there's been a lot of debate about that of late) the guys who were writing the Constitution saw one major problem coming in fast. Smaller states, with smaller populations were still sovereign states with technically equal standing to any other. Some had much larger area than others, and thus potential population growth that could surpass smaller but wealthier (and at the time, more influential) states. And it was clear to anyone with a whit of common sense that Rhode Island would be willing to let itself be counted as less worthy on the newly forged national stage than New York (to give an example).

The solution was the bicameral legislature that granted both equal representation (Two Senators, everyone gets the same, all states are equal as states) and proportional representation (Congressmen? How many people you got in the state? Okay, there's how you figure out how many congressmen). Now, yeah, it's a different country these days (for one thing, it's actually a country rather than a formal union of smaller countries) but the various states still have legal, cultural, and social differences.

And I somehow doubt that many states-- I daresay most of them (if any) would be willing to give up that guarantee of equal say that is the Senate for the sake of "streamlining" the government. It's not to their advantage, and in the end, advantage always counts. Kencolt (talk) 08:50, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

It is kind of irrelevant than there is a significant number of people who clearly vote for a party that works against their interests if your concern is the utility of democracy. The greatest utility of democracy is its ability to depose a bad government. The "representing the interests of the people" is a huge huge bonus per democracy but it only works reasonably well if you have a good system in place such as proportional representation. and America doesn't have it nor likely will any time soon. So the yo-yo effect of a red vs. blue government does VERY little to properly represent the interests of the people, especially when the parties are so similar (when you compare with the political differences in say multi-party Belgium the two US parties look virtually identical). How intelligent people's votes are is far less important than if people are intelligent enough to get rid of a bad government (teetering on tyrannical or cutting down on rights or ending democracy). Of course there is no guarantee people will over throw a bad government, luckily this time in the US they did. Otherwise American democracy is kind of silly as you can't really represent the will of the people that well with two parties that are both caricatures of the progressive vs. conservative agendas, aren't significantly different and play back and forth every one or two election cycles. ShabiDOO 13:52, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
You do realize that the House is more powerful than the Senate, right? Regardless, if Government can't do anything, that's actually the system working. Half the point of the checks and balances is to keep everyone too busy fighting amongst each other unless a crisis occurs. As for the Senate, the idea is that the Government has to have support of both the population and the regions. Without the Senate, Nevada would have virtually no say at all, and California could simply vote every session to build another toxic waste dump outside of Reno. It's not a perfect system, but even the EU saw this system with its flaws and still gives proportionately more votes to Denmark than to France. CoryUsar (talk) 15:10, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
You don't need a president nor a strong senate which can frequently block the lower chamber. Commonwealth countries and contitutional monarchies (UK, Canada, Spain, Belgium, most of Scandinavia etc) have had all power concentrated in a single chamber and within the chamber itself has all the checks and balances you need. Prime Minister being stupid? Cabinet intervenes or party members vote against it or party picks a new leader. Government does something unconstitutional? Supreme court steps in. Bad government? They get elected out the next election. Why on Earth do you need a president or an upper chamber that regularly blocks bills? The will of the people vs. the will of the people vs. the will of the people? It really seems like madness when you see the kind of gridlock that happens for two or even four years. ShabiDOO 16:18, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Again, the gridlock isn't a bug, it's a feature. The goal is to keep the Federal government from interfering too much into what each State wants except for national emergencies and foreign policy. The Fed is much, much more powerful now than it was in the 18th century, and that's not something the Founders would've agreed to. Not unless you believe they would've been fine with the Commerce Clause being used to tell me I can't grow marijuana for personal use, because growing my own marijuana for personal use only and not selling to anyone else reduces market demand for the drug and therefore affects interstate commerce. CoryUsar (talk) 17:27, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Yes, it's a "feature," which means the system is working exactly as intended. Ie, we need a new system. β€” Oxyaena Harass 17:32, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
It is pure political dysfunction. When an even remotely contentious bill gets passed it is an absolute miracle. No wonder the rest of the developed world is light years ahead on so many issues. Zheesh. ShabiDOO 17:43, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Let's take Abortion as an example. (I want legal abortions personally, but I view Roe v Wade as SCOTUS overreach). If enough people don't want it, should Missouri be able to tell California to ban "partial birth" abortions? At the same time I also don't think California should force Missouri to legalize all abortions either. BUT! I also don't think California should subsidize Missouri's welfare system that's overburdened with unwanted children; I don't think it's a coincidence that the states most against abortions are also those that have a net cash inflow from Medicaid and other Federally subsidized programs. Until proven otherwise, any issue comes down to money. That's just one example of an issue. It also becomes problematic when you have other things, e.g., does a state recognize certain marriages or divorce, and so forth; there's an old lawyer puzzle about a man who marries, divorces, remarries, etc. Read if you want some fun, otherwise skip. Basically, Guy marries Wife 1 in State 1 but then divorces in State 2, while State 1 doesn't recognize divorces, Wife 2 is Black and is married in State 2, and the guy remarries in State 3 where they don't recognize interracial marriages but do recognize divorces. Then he dies. State 1 says he's still married to Wife 1 who gets the inheritance, Wife 2 and 3 have no claim. State 2 says he divorced Wife 1 but never divorced Wife 2 so she gets the inheritance, Wife 3 has no claim. State 3 says he divorced Wife 1 and never legally married Wife 2, so Wife 3 gets the inheritance. Who actually wins? The lawyers. CoryUsar (talk) 17:48, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I've always thought this argument was dumb. All parts of government have grown stronger and more complex over the centuries, in every enduring state. The reason is that the world is constantly growing more complex at a faster rate, so that government has to grow to catch up. The founders knew this - it's the reason why the militias that were so revered in the Revolutionary War disappeared from political discourse and ceased to be a valid solution after the debacle that was the War of 1812.
But back to the main topic, there's a key difference between slow deliberation and vituperative partisan gridlock. One takes a while to produce a solution, and the other never even tries, as everyone's too busy undoing what's been done and fighting each other. This is a major problem, as a weak and divided Congress creates a super-strong Judiciary. Everybody turns to the Courts for their political agenda of choice, which can affect the lives of millions with a few pages. This is what the founders opposed, see Federalist 78, which specifically says "It proves incontestably, that the judiciary is beyond comparison the weakest of the three departments of power." Just see how important the Supreme Court has been in our lives over the past decades - all without being elected or having any accountability to the people. IveBeenFrank (talk) 18:09, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I suppose so.CoryUsar (talk) 18:19, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I'm just saying, the reasoning for the Senate was to be the "the saucer to cool the peoples coffee", which I didn't realize until recently is because these fucks actually drank coffee out of the saucer. I feel like that combined with the slavery, should be enough to say we need a solid structural change.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:07, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
There just needs to be some way of ensuring that you have both "popular by numbers alone" and "popular by region" before something is allowed to happen Nationally. And no, having the Senate only slowly replaced over the course of 6 years rather than all at once is not a bad idea, which is what the "saucer" argument was about. After all, you don't want a situation such as 2002 where due to recent events, xenophobes could win on the campaign of kicking out all the foreigners, and both the Senate and House agree on an ethnic cleansing. Rather, you have 2 years of a rabidly xenophobic House, with 2/3 of the Senate there to block the crazies for the next couple of years, to prevent the country from going entirely crazy. Then 2004 will roll around, and hopefully the public calms down a bit, and the House has more levelheaded people in it again. CoryUsar (talk) 22:20, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Also, if you want to feel old... That porn star on your other tab? If she's only 18 she was born after 9/11/2001. CoryUsar (talk) 22:25, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I hate being the person that has to make this argument, but we have to trust people to make the right decisions about who they support. That comes with educating voters about the issues, and being responsive to their needs. That explicitly means there needs to be more representation, not less. I'm not convinced 2002 would have seen a wave of genocidal candidates running for office, any more than I would be convinced there would be a massive wave populists in 2008 to redistribute the wealth and execute all the bankers. There would need to be things that would need to happen at the same time as destroying the Senate and expanding the House, like equitable voting rights, and strengthening the bureaucracy with technocrats so that we don't have political hacks creating policy. With strong institutions implementing policy, they would represent the limit to nuking Afghanistan, or raiding the coffers of Goldman Sachs to make guillotines.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 00:48, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜ It's all based on an unhealthy paranoid distrust of government which is toxic and dysfunctional. Look around the world with governments with only one effective branch of power and look...they do fine. No tyrannical overreach. No out of control legislation. Canada is also a federal system with strong provincial powers where virtually ALL the national level power happens in one chamber with no separately elected president, where the upper chamber only tweaks the bills and NOPE...in 150 years there aint been no craziness. The same could be said of a dozen other similar countries. Abolish the presidency and senate, make your one chamber with proportional representation and you just might have a fighting chance at joining the civilised world with centralised health care, necessary social programs, properly addressing climate change and catching up with the Europe/Canada/NZ/Australia/Japan/SKorea on so many fronts. ShabiDOO 03:26, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

I don't see being skeptical of Politicians being unhealthy, at least not unless you are assuming it's impossible for Politicians to actually do right by the public. Right now, we have a President who no one in their right mind should ever done business with, and I'm still trying to figure out how they did. NYC contractors all talk to each other, especially on big projects, so at some point all those contractors who kept getting screwed by Trump are also partially to blame. He is being replaced by a guy who, while better, is still fawking awful. And that guy was the Veep for Obama who, again, was still pretty shit, the media just presented him in a better light, even if he was better than the previous guy. 20+ years and we can't get a single decent guy/girl in charge. CoryUsar (talk) 15:03, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I said "unhealthy distrust" is the problem. There is nothing wrong with healthy scepticism but for fuck sakes your political system is literally built on systemic paranoia of branches of government that cannot be trusted to function on their own. That is very unhealthy. Once again...look to other countries that have absolutely zero problem with a simple political system and learn from them. If the government does something unconstitutional then you have a supreme court to stop them. That's all the checks and balances you need. Let the government govern...even if for a term or two your party didn't win and you despise what they do. Zheesh. ShabiDOO 15:21, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
They kind of do just govern at the state level, the states tend to have one chamber and a governor with a court that basically goes along with everything. The US federal government is not really comparable to the French parliament, but rather, to the EU Government, whereas the State of NY would be comparable to France, kinda. The people everywhere in Europe have a massive distrust of the EU government, to the point that Brexit happened, if you want to talk unhealthy paranoia. CoryUsar (talk) 15:42, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
France is not an example I was talking about. They have an elected president and a semi-interfering senate. I was referring to countries with westminster systems like: Canada, UK, Australia, NZ and constitutional monarchies like Spain, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden, Denmark. Most of those countries also have a federal system with provinces/states/nations with comparable levels of autonomy that the US has. Just look to Canada where their provinces have considerable power. Yet at the national level you just have one effective chamber (and a non-interfering useless second chamber which many people want abolished despite the fact it cannot even fully block legislation). No need for a president, no need for a second competing second chamber. 150 years of no notable problems. It's really helarious listening to Americans saying that things that work in other countries just cannot work there. Like healthcare. Works in literally EVERY SINGLE other democratic developed nation (and developing ones) but for some reason wouldn't work in the US laugh my fucking ass off. Why on earth would a functional non-toxic non-gridlocked government not work in the US? It's almost as if you want your government to not do things. ShabiDOO 16:16, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
France may not be the best example, but you're missing the point. The US is not a country like France, nor the UK, nor Australia, Spain, whatever. As a country, it's more like the EU itself, but stronger. And with a language that virtually everyone speaks, and even more porous internal borders.
Incidentally, that is one of the reasons the individual states don't have their own Universal Health Care, or decent social programs. The EU countries all have UHC and decent welfare, but there doesn't seem to be a EU-wide healthcare system or welfare system. If you are poor in Europe, why be poor in, say, Poland when you could move to, say, Sweden with its better welfare system? For starters, Sweden deports non-Swedes who need social services, even if they are citizens in another EU country. Any US citizen who is able to show up to any US state can instantly become a state resident; New York can't deport people back to California if they don't want to go, though free bus tickets can magically appear. Furthermore, there aren't really significant cultural barriers preventing people from moving, as virtually everywhere in the US people speak English as their primary language. That isn't the case in the EU, if you speak Danish there's only one country where everyone else speaks Danish. So no cultural or legal barriers for internal migration, unlike the EU. So how does New York prevent all the poor people from all the other states flooding in to take advantage of their great health care or generous welfare system? Simple; not have healthcare or a decent welfare system in the first place! It's a race to the bottom for every state to be the absolute shittiest to poor people, to try to prevent the other states from sending their poor people to that state. CoryUsar (talk) 16:57, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
No the US is nothing like the EU. The EU is a massive treaty syatem with countries willing to slowly harmonise SOME laws and institutions. They are still entirely sovereign nations and can leave any time and have a far greater amount of autonomy from the EU system than US states have. The EU and the United States could not possibly be more different. Once again, (and I'm saying this is the third time): Canada has a similar level of devolved powers with their provinces as the US has per their states. They are completely comparable. Yet they don't have a system conducive to legislative gridlock. I don't know why you keep insisting the US is unique the relationship between federal powers and strong state powers. It is NOT unique at all. America is just a country, it is not some exceptional entity that is incapable of enjoying or benefiting from what the rest of the world has. ShabiDOO 17:07, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Europe has reciprocal health care meaning you can use emergency services anywhere (some countries charge a small fee for hospital visits). Also, EU countries only deport citizens of other EU countries who are being an undue burden on the social welfare system (not people who need it). In many countries you need to have worked or be resident for a minimum period before you access some services (though some services are always available). Examples of deportations: In Belgium 50 Spaniards were deported after working for only a month and then taking Belgian unemployment for two years (making no effort to find a job). In Spain, Bulgarian and Romanian citizens were deported after completely abusing the system and claiming multiple forms of social assistance. Very few EU countries will let you just go there and start taking services, especially without contributing. I don't know how it works in America but I doubt someone from Vermont can just go to Wyoming and instantly start getting state welfare and unemployment insurance without a minimum residency or having worked in the state. Some EU countries expect you to make modest social security instalments if you aren't working, or you use your EU health card for emergency medical insurance or doctor visits and claim it when you go back home. But unless you are taking advantage of a social program, nobody is deported for no reason. I've lived in 4 EU countries effortlessly with minimal bureaucracy (in France you don't even need to fill out a single form). I've used the health care system in three of those countries without even having to fill out a single form during or after a hospital visit (just showed them my EU health card when I arrived, end of story). I claimed sick leave with no problems in another EU country when I got sick (one month hospital stay and four months of follow up, no charge for anything, zero paper work). But yeah, the EU is certainly not the US. They are autonomous countries and they can deport you if you abuse their services, commit certain crimes or pose a certain risk. ShabiDOO 18:16, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
My dream system is to eliminate any forced regional aspect from the Senate entirely. Everyone votes for whichever Senator they want nationwide. The top 100 get in, the remainder have to pledge their votes to one of the top 100. Senators vote with the proportional force of the number of people that voted for them (a Senator who got 2 million votes vote counts twice as much as a 1 million vote Senator). You want to vote for someone that will represent your state, go ahead. You want to vote for a Senator that is in favor of single payer? There will be someone to fill that niche. Want to vote for a conspiracy nut? Well, there will be plenty of those.
This ought to create a Senate with a fairly accurate mix of the real opinions and desires of the actual populace instead of the current "Sorry, you voted for my opponent. Fuck you." model. Individual votes will continue to matter outside of election day. - Immigrant laborer (talk) 17:43, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Would be easier to just get rid of the Senate as a separate body of the legislature, and include them in the House, but also guarantee each region (Northwest, California, Texas, Southwest, Northeast, Southeast, New York) have a certain number of seats.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 20:58, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I was never intending an easy solution, but regionalizing the US, as opposed to giving each state two elected judges is... well, have you ever asked border cities how they feel about their neighbors? It would still be statistically unrepresentative, but at least there'd be some qualifications like having worked with the constituency and being familiar with law. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 08:54, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Corporate reasoning for social media takedowns[edit]

Do you think social media websites are deplatforming right wing idiots more for money or to avoid legal repercussions? Are they more afraid of a boycott from people upset they won't deplatform extremists, or governments bringing legislation that mandates what can be said on their platform? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 15:43, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

The latter. The reason it took them so long was because Trump was threatening to lay down the removal of section 230 on media sites. Literally the monday before the insurrection happened, Pai announced that they were dropping the "remove section 230" shite. That is not a coincidence. Sirius (dog star / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 16:36, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Ultimately I think the issue is more about money than anything else. Most major social media websites run off advertising. Large companies generally don't want to be seen promoting extremist content.
Focusing on right wing American politics is not the way to think about this.
Remember, in the past Reddit and Youtube got scrutiny also for child exploitation content or other grossly offensive communities such as FatPeopleHate, CreepShots, etc. In 2017, the big to-do for a Youtube boycott was advertisements appearing alongside videos made by Islamic State and other Arabic terrorism.
Fuck, Youtube last year banned some "drill" musicWikipedia videos for being too real-world violent.
Social media isn't going to give a shit, frankly, if you make an entire video series explaining, say, the Bush Doctrine. So this framing of things as "right wing politics" is incorrect.
Unless, that is, these days, American right wing politics is only about shit companies may not want to advertise next to: climate change denialism, COVID-19 denialism, QAnon conspiracy bullshit, anti-vaccination bullshit, COVID-19 quackery, white nationalism, and (especially) the promotion of political violence in relation to these elements.
Unfortunately, Trumpism in the GOP made "right wing politics" more in this direction. So I imagine they are also worried about what Congress might do, as both "sides" hate them at this time (one side wants to force social media to carry extremist content, another side wants tougher government mandated enforcement against extremist content...). PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 16:49, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Don't forget that, while corporations are generally amoral they are usually staffed by real human beings, some of whom have hearts. SolPyre (talk) 03:41, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

section 230 is unique to the us. there is not that kind of immunity for the likes of twitter and co elsewhere in the world. legislation does have to play catch up with the realities of the internet. germany has laws in place to formalise the responsibilities of these companies, and they face heavy fines for non compliance. the eu has more voluntary guidelines that were drawn up after discussions between social media companies and the eu, with more formal legislation in the pipeline. the uk has the online harms white paper to set up a framework and a regulatory body for these kinds of things.

trump is actually correct when he says section 230 gives social media companies too much protection, even if his own reasoning is a bullshit hissy fit. it might have served a purpose back in the day when the social media companies were not the behemoths they are today. when you had to the library or a university to get online, and everything was dial up, scope was limited. reach was limited. and so was potential for harm. now its a market that has been consolidated into a few giant all powerful corporations, they reach a massive world wide audience that gives them an unprecedented level of influence ranging from individuals to multinational companies to national governments.

because social media has this massive reach, it means shit stirrers, charlatans, and hate filled bigots have a massive reach. people who before twitter came along, could reach only those who heard them ranting on a street corner or read the flyer left under the window wiper on your car. now you have their manifesto in your news feed. their bullshit is legitimised and magnified. these social media giants should be responsible for the dogshit that is spread. not least that they have always decided what content you see, even without directly removing egregious content. at least, an algorithm decides. creating social media bubbles and distorting our views of the world.

they absolutely should be held accountable for the toxicity that social media helps spread and create. they racked in enough wealth and power from it. they wont be any poorer from being properly regulated. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:24, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

China claims...[edit]

...it has it's first COVID death in 8 months. I mean Jesus fucking crapper not even Trump can bullshit on such a monumental scale. ShabiDOO 17:26, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

Even during Spanish Flu, the countries reported low death rates instead of no death rates, so that everyone could be told "no, your particular town is just harder hit than most, the rest of the country is doing ok, anyone saying otherwise is an enemy spy and should be reported to the authorities". CoryUsar (talk) 18:00, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I know you guys hate China, but what non-conspiracy theories are you basing your "That's bullshit" on? They went into total lockdown in the cities with cases. That's not the actions of a country faking not being sick while very sick. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:44, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
We have an entire article devoted to your evidence Aloysius the Gaul 23:39, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
@Shabidoo: oh, I think he can DocYankemPrevent Truth Decay!00:01, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Ikanreed, a lot of countries had brutal lock downs. But you know, once the strictest measures were released, and even when very carefully letting people in (with harsh quarantines) even then still a few people died. A country of a billion people that relaxed the lock down and had a porous border (even with quarantine) could not possible have zero deaths in 8 months. That's fucking preposterous. China is one of the ultimate disinformation states. ShabiDOO 03:22, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
The problem with China is that their statistics have been notoriously sketchy in the past, and it was pretty clear that they fucked up at the beginning of the pandemic with the usual cover-ups and citizen reporting censorship and what not. Overall, Asia has handled the pandemic far better than Europe and the Americas (possibly the previous coronavirus outbreakWikipedia, which was largely centered in Asia, helped in one way or another), and I wouldn't be surprised if China was doing pretty good ala Japan or South Korea currently. But it's still hard to trust official China statistics; "zero in 8 months" seems a bit optimistically skewered, although it's not something that can easily be proven one way or another. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 03:56, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
The real problem is they have a habit of releasing disinformation to try to maintain a strong front internationally, particularly where the notoriously fickle US is concerned. If I remember correctly it's been confirmed that they tried to coverup the initial warnings of a pandemic to save face, which backfired on them (though when the US tried this same tactic it ended up being far worse), though they did ultimately shift into high gear once it became an international concern. With all of that in mind, and also bearing in mind that they were quite draconian in their lockdowns for awhile, it's possible, though unlikely, that the figures are accurate. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 04:23, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Also bear in mind that they said "death" not "case", as that's an important distinction. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 04:25, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
With a disease this virulent and easily spread, covering it up is not some trivial task. Cory and shabi are just kind of dumb conspiracy theorists, but only about "acceptable targets". You literally cannot pretend CoVID-19 is not happening without literally hundreds of thousands of deaths(see: US). My in-laws live in Bejing, and would know as well. China is not the only country to manage a lockdown-based local eradication. This attitude of theirs reeks of racism. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:54, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
And a million people disappearing shouldn't be easy to cover up, yet how long after the fact did we find out about the Uighur "re-education" camps? I'm not saying it's impossible that China had a better response to COVID than the West, but I am saying that it's all but impossible they had such a perfect response that they've only had 1 death in the past half of a year. And it's really not that hard to hide even a thousand deaths; old people die all the time, just declare that Grandma died of "respiratory failure" and done, no COVID death to report! CoryUsar (talk) 15:17, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Yes, please do ignore my nuanced response... I don't know why I even bother trying to correct people who are too terminally dense to actually listen... ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 15:32, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜ Ikanreed you are so bloody naive if you believe China didn't have a single COVID death in the last 8 months. I wouldn't believe a single major country if they made that claim regardless of harsh lock-downs when they have open borders. I especially don't believe a country that claims this when they are notorious for releasing disinformation (most notably their claim that they are just "reeducation institutions" in Xingxiang, erase all mentions of Tienanmen square, lie regularly about their yearly provincial growth figures and regularly publish endless bullshit in their national state run newspapers. They literally just jailed a Chinese journalist for reporting on the original outbreak. Can you seriously believe anything their government says when they make such an incredible claim as "no deaths in 8 months"? Calling out "racism" or "conspiracy theories" is a stupid hand-wave of yours. Are you as confident about this as you were with "Trump winning the election"? ShabiDOO

Incredulity/doubt is reasonable - making a counter claim on no actual evidence is bullshit.Aloysius the Gaul 21:57, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Which is the more likely scenario? That A) China got COVID under control, or that B) China did not get COVID under control and is lying about it? CoryUsar (talk) 22:12, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
It’s also fairly easy to fudge the numbers by applying a very strict definition of β€œdeath from COVID-19” that excludes any cases where there are other contributing factors and/or by registering the immediate cause (e.g, heart attack), rather than COVID-19. ScepticWombat (talk) 18:03, 16 January 2021 (UTC)


How do you get a draft into mainspace?Evilatheistheathen (talk) 18:31, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

Under "More" on the top right, "Relocate". CoryUsar (talk) 18:50, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I did that but it still says it's a draft for some reason. Evilatheistheathen (talk) 19:22, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
You apparently tried to move it to a redirect or something. Anyway, I deleted the redirect and moved the draft to its place. Should be fine now. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 19:30, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Ah ok. ThanksπŸ‘ Evilatheistheathen (talk) 19:35, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Change the namespace from "Draft" to "(main)". --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 19:30, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
I think the problem was that there was a redirect at "Danny Healy-Rae" to "Draft:Danny Healy-Rae" and Evilatheistheathen tried to move the draft over it without removing the redirect first. Anyway, I think I fixed it. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 19:35, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

$3,000 a month to rent a toilet[edit]

[1] These people really are just the fucking worst. -RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:58, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

Just sad. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 23:23, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Sad! IveBeenFrank (talk) 23:43, 14 January 2021 (UTC)
Really fucking hate that I held a proper job in 2020. Had to cough up thousands of dollars, to pay for this bullshit.--NavigatorBR (Talk) - 03:02, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Well, that's the real estate acumen. The meta-game. Secret Service detail costs money and is obligatory, it's guaranteed rent if you stay at your own property and don't have to pay for it yourself. Keep in mind, Donald and Melania have lifelong Secret Service details, because that actually mattered for Barack and Michelle. And yet I'm still worried that Trump is going to ask his followers to donate whatever they can to fight thieves and grifters. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:00, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

Conlang in a South Park episode[edit]

In the South Park episode "Goobacks" there is a fictional language spoken by immigrants from the future seeking work in present day America.

This language known as "Future Speak", is an amalgamation of all world languages. The Future Speak language has also a unique alphabet.

How difficult would it be to create the Future Speak language in a fully functional language? I know that languages have radically different rules to them. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 23:04, 14 January 2021 (UTC)

The challenges of actually learning that language would be insane. In that case the consonant inventory of that language would be WELL over 150 consonant sounds (if you included combinations of injectives, retroflex, aspirated, creaky, pre-nasalised etc. Vowel sounds (with short, medium and long vowels, rounded-unrounded etc) would be nearly 50 sounds. It would have at least 100 gender/noun categories and at least 70 grammatical cases. There would be at least a dozen tones. It would have bizarre and complicated stress patterns. It would include the most complex conjugations and declensions. It would be both analytical and synthetic, it would be a combination of nominative/dative AND ergative AND more exotic types. It's vocabulary would be a strange mess. I suppose if we had to just force them all to amalgamate somehow you could reduce those numbers a little but it would be so complex I think it would take a few generations before it was reasonably spoken natively AND regional variation would happen so fast as it developed that different languages would very quickly emerge making it difficult to hold onto a world standard. It would sound nothing like the language on South Park. It is a helarious episode though! THEY TUK R JERBS! ShabiDOO 03:19, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I'm no linguist but I think you might be over-inflating here, OP asked how difficult it would be to create the futurespeak language not how plausible it would be for such a language to eventually exist. I don't see why a skilled individual with some funding couldn't make a fake futurespeak from the samples of that South Park episode. That sort of thing has been done before (Dothraki and Klingon). The conlag created might not hold up under scrutiny by linguists but I don't see why it couldn't be just as functional as other created languages. SolPyre (talk) 04:39, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Technically, modern English is already an amalgamation of a great many world languages, just heavily leaning on French and old English, especially for grammar. There's words from almost every part of the world somewhere in English: kamikaze(Japan), robot(Polish), algebra(Arabic), karma(Sanskrit), commando(Afrikaans), patio(Spanish), bayou(Choctaw), amok(Malay). The actual list of words not derived from Latin through French or from German through Old English is gigantic, colossal even.
So why does that not count? Well, because it's too familiar to you, and too unfamiliar to speakers of other languages. Also because the south park writers are kinda racist, and had a definitely intentional message of "race mixing is bad" incorporated into that episode's message. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:15, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Trey Parker and Matt Stone, racist? You're joking, right? Heck, "They terk are jarbs!" is from that very same episode.CoryUsar (talk) 15:33, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
South Park has some issues for sure, but racism is a new one? From what I know, the creators are far more hardcore libertarians who go "all politics are dumb and holding a solid position on anything is a sign of weakness" than outright racists. Anyway, I could totally be wrong here, but this is news to me. Sirius (dog star / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 16:09, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Exactly. In the party of politics, South Park is the one teenager in the corner spitting out obscenities at everyone while thinking they're cool. IveBeenFrank (talk) 16:14, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Except they have some cred to back up their claims of being cool, unlike that obnoxious teen trying to reframe some historical event in the most anti-American light possible even if it means ignoring actual facts and then expecting praise for being "smarter" than the mainstream. CoryUsar (talk) 16:35, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
i have generally found that the guy spitting out obscenities at everyone - the equal opportunity offender - are pretty much always just racist. not sure parker and stone are any different there. two white american guys do love their racist stereotypes a little too much. im sure there is an argument to be made that they are satirising such stereotypes. but there is a pretty good argument to be made it just perpetuates them. i seem to remember asian people rarely be anythng more than crass stereotypes.
i mean the whole 'not racist if you have a go at everyone' defence falls down somewhat if when you are having ago at everyone, the race based stuff is only ever thrown at non white people and is usually all that is ever thrown their way. is it really not racist if your digs are entirely based around race for one group, but for your own ethnicity you rarely ever make reference to race at all? if you arnt a racist you need to work on your material.
and it isnt satire having a 'racist' character as the vehicle for your racist jokes. they are still your racist jokes and you might be joking but not really.
i used to watch south park when it first aired. it was funny, i guess, up to a point. it wore thin once the shock value dissipated and whatever point was being made with an offensively racist/sexist/homophobic caricature has stopped being made but the character still around and no longer offensive to make a point, just offensive. some religious groups gave it the kind of pr money cant buy and its become a sacred cow to the sort of people who make passionate and principled defences of the freedom of speech against authoritarian censorship in general but specifically against not being racist.
it just annoys me that we are supposed to give south park a pass for its flaws, or even to acknowledge them AMassiveGay (talk) 20:46, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Matt Stone is Jewish. I don't think that counts as "White"; I don't think I've ever heard of a White Supremacist group that welcomes Jews as "fellow White people". CoryUsar (talk) 21:53, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
South Park portrays a great deal of white people as entitled, insensitive, semi-racist (or full out racist) dysfunctional people (especially rednecks). There is literally not a single race, class, gender, sexuality or anything that is not ridiculed by South Park. With the exception of Jew jokes (self ridicule by Jewish people) most jokes about race, class and gender are done in a way that points out how stupid racism, sexism and homophobia is. Much of South Park's LGTBQ+ treatment (especially in the later seasons) strives towards acceptance and tolerance of LGTBQ+ (hence in an episode where their parents get angry with their kids for apparant homophobia, big gay Al's sanctuary of pets who have dealt with homophobia, Tweek and Craig's parents struggling and accepting their kids percieved gayness, the boys fighting for big gay Al to be their gay scout leader. This is all countered by outrageous LGTBQ+ jokes which lampoon gay culture in a way that I as LGTBQ+ find absolutely hilarious. People being accepting of Garrison when he comes out of the closet (but then ironically only superficially in a way that shows social hypocrisy. The school showing shame for firing Garrison just for being gay. An episode which celebrates the legalisation of gay marriage. Big gay Al's song in the film is one of the funniest gay cabaret's I've ever seen. I don't think it's an understatement to say South Park helped normalise LGTBQ+ culture for my generation. ShabiDOO 08:24, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
It's interesting how they admit they were wrong on both Global Warming and Trans issues. The Global Warming denialism is really the one thing I find inexcusable with them, because even before South Park existed much of the public (even if not the majority) was pretty well aware about Climate Change and all, whereas the initial Trans episode is much more forgivable when you remember that you really didn't see any positive depictions of Trans people in the mainstream back in 2005. CoryUsar (talk) 02:31, 17 January 2021 (UTC)
@shabidoo - just going to have to disagree. the white characters get range, are more nuanced, more 'real' (as real as is possible for such a show), especially when contrasting with some of the more egregious steretypes - asian characters for example are depicted in a manner that mickey rooney would think a bit much. any point about hypocrisy is blunted when the hypocrisy shown is done by characters so much less overtly ridiculous (still often ridiculous none the less, but less so) comparatively than those it is shown targeted by it. i also feel its easier for some groups to laugh off abuse thrown at them as banter thats not really possible for more marginalised folk. to me south park is the guy smiling why he throws abuse at you, feigning incredulity if they get a rise. 'its just banter' they insist 'you've no sense of humour'. no it is not banter. banter is between equals. this is bullying.
i cant speak as to it helping normalise lgbt culture, i cant personally see it and its honestly not a position ive heard before - and i'd long since stopped watching before most of those events occurred. im more inclined to believe its normalised racist, homophobic, transphobic bullying. it gives license to bigots to condone their own prejudice as banter, and its 'just saying what we all think' anyway. they arent neighbours, but still the same neighbourhood as the proud boys.
@coryuser - jewish and white are not mutually exclusive and we shouldnt be taking our cues from white supremacists. it has to be said though, the us has had interesting take on whiteness over the years AMassiveGay (talk) 03:13, 17 January 2021 (UTC)
Jews have never and likely will never be considered "just another White ethnicity" by "White" people for any significant length of time the way Italians and the Irish (themselves once viewed as "non-White) are viewed as "White", any more than Arabs have ever or will ever consider Magrebi or Mizrahi Jews to be just another Arab group for any significant length of time. Jews only get to be "White" when it comes time to blame problems on "White people", not when it comes to being the beneficiary of discriminatory policies. CoryUsar (talk) 05:12, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

Sad again[edit]

How is everyone else doing, just wanna have a β€œconversation” of some some sort about things that are happening and whatnot A S E L A ཊལྐ 12:09, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

@Asela Do you think seeing other people saying they're feeling fine will make you feel better? Spud (talk) 13:41, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
That's a bummer Asela. What's up? ShabiDOO 13:45, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I'm doing great, thanks. Could be better though. How are you? Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 15:14, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
@Spud Probably, I don’t really get jealous of other ppl feeling fine anymore, and it’s nice to hear that good things are happening at all tbh. @Shabidoo eh nothing in particular, just the usual stuff (anxiety, feeling lonely, not feeling great about myself, missing my ex, etc) but it’s nothing super particular. Thank you for asking. @Nebuchadnezzar7658 I’m glad you’re doing okay, and hope you do even better soon. I’m okay for now, just woke up and so I’m right now too tired to figure out if I’m as sad as I was yesterday. We’ll see. A S E L A ཊལྐ 22:27, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I've been doing pretty OK too. We had a massive two day snowstorm here this week, which made walking to and from work a bit of a hassle. Then the temperature dropped to -20Β°C/-4Β°F, which brought its own inconveniences, but at least the weather was otherwise nice. And I'm actually a fan of snow too. I also went out with a girl I like twice about 2 weeks ago, but we've been working different days and hours since then. Might be able to see her on Monday though, so that's great.
I hope you'll be able to find some happiness in your immediate life and situation Asela. Otherwise, I'm here at somewhat inconsistent hours, but I wouldn't mind conversing if we happen to be around at the same time. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 23:00, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I'm happy because it's the weekend and I won't see my horrible boss for 48 hours. Spud (talk) 06:34, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Dude, that hurts because it's the weekend and I'm so glad I don't have to be that horrible boss for 48 hours. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 09:50, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Happy birthday[edit]

Wikipedia Anna Livia (talk) 17:49, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

Hurray, it's theotherwiki's bday! Twodots Annoy me Look, ma! 17:59, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

I'm completely obsessed with "Spirit They're Gone, Spirit They've Vanished". help.[edit]

So this was the debut album by Animal Collective but it's credited to "Avey Tare and Panda Bear" when it was released 20 years ago. This was back when they were more underground than influential in the 2010s so it's noisy and weird as fuck. It starts off with "Spirit They've Vanished", a noisy track, but if you read the lyrics and grow older, it becomes a very beautiful track. Following it is "April and The Phantom" where it starts to blend that mix of pop and noise with acoustic guitar and synthesizers. The lyrics sing about a girl running away from her parents with the ghost of her as an adult. "Penny Dreadfuls" follows after the untitled track written by Avey when he was 16. It's a gorgeous piano ballad about a public elementary school bus ride, one of the more accessible tracks. Following it is "Chocolate Girl", an 8-minute catchy pop tune as an ode to failed middle school relationships. The 12-minute Finale "Alvin Row" is something to it in itself. It starts off with Alvin being "born" symbolized by the wall of noise with the song developing as he ages to a young adult in the lyrics. It feels like it was 2 songs woven into one, but Avey did a wonderful job putting it together, and putting it into parts feels like an insult to it. This album has become the anthem of my senior year as those chaotic symphonies to childhood have touched me. If you're open-minded enough, I highly recommend listening to it because this type of music can't be heard anywhere else. Rockford the Roe (talk) 18:21, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

When I was in high school I despised Animal Collective. I thought The Unicorns were dumb. I thought the Postal Service was for girls. I thought anything that wasn't quite angry enough for me was lame, and anybody trying anything else was artsy-fartsy, I was making fun of Arcade Fire before it was funny. It hurt so much deep in my guts to actually listen to the stuff and admit to myself I was being too narrowminded to be cool. I don't like to listen to a lot of Animal Collective or Panda Bear and I still don't quite get Avey Tare, but I've got enough songs from those guys that hit so hard that I'm always down for it anymore. And I'm a Unicorns stan now, after being like "This is cutesy dipshit bs." Having tried and honestly wanted to make music myself, although not in that AC vein, I'm so mad at myself for limiting myself by saying "that's not real music." Being said, I did have a friend who tried to woo a girl by making her a mix CD of what he thought were her favorite sounds, based on her AC affinity. It didn't land. It's a solid album, it's really novel and clever and listening to it again, not every idea is that cool, but the creators don't step over each other or leave any idea unfinished. Band relationship goals. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:03, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Check out akron/family. It's more a psychadellic big group but it hits the same texture beats. If you don't like it, let's go. So, as a punk fan, Pixies, Deerhoof, Dinosaur Jr., Roomrunner. As a theater fan, Decemberists, Fiery Furnaces, Neutral Milk Hotel, Beirut. As a post-rock fan, Godspeed! You Black Emporer, Kikagaku Moyo, Murder By Death. As an art rock fan, old Astronautalis, old Modest Mouse, old Man Man. As a classic rock fan, I have to admit to myself that Animal Collective is in that category now. There isn't a modern analogue to Animal Collective that I can directly figure out, they did something special. I did roll my eyes at the song "My Girls," but everybody gets old. I mean, I'll be honest, Billie Eilish takes influences from every style of pop I've never listened to and mashes them up. I think that's cool in it's own respect and I have nothing but respect for it. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:24, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Renaming Users[edit]

Is it possible to learn this power? IveBeenFrank (talk) 18:49, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

It's on the special pages. CoryUsar (talk) 18:54, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
@IveBeenFrank: You'd need to be a mod or a tech to rename users. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 18:56, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
You can do a tech application on the request for user rights page, we have a procedure for it which is outlined in the CS. Also make sure you know how mediawiki, HTML/CSS and our Edit Filters work (also you need a mod/existing tech to back you). Mod you can become through our official election process, which happened fairly recently and you only are for 1 year. (Speaking of which, we kinda need more active techs, we kinda hemmoraghed a good amount of our active techs in the past year, with Oxy and Dysk losing it for rights abuse reasons, EK choosing to go down with Raven seemingly and Duce recently LANCBing). Sirius (dog star / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 22:29, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
But given how rarely LANCBs actually last, maybe Duce could return? (Especially since his LANCB rationale was based on a huge misunderstanding) But then again, Kazitor never came out of "retirement". Or FCP. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 04:26, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
I still hold hopes that our Supreme Commander will return one day. As I understand, it was just real life catching up with him that lead to FCP becoming less active and that might still change. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 10:04, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Machine Guns[edit]

I just got back from Florida yesterday. While I was there, I saw a billboard that said "FIRE A MACHINE GUN!! Starting at $24,99 per person." With a picture of a women shooting this BEAST of a gun on it. it literally looked like the same people who did Disney World's billboards did this one as well. Gotta say, I think Florida has officially out-done even us here in Texas (or is starting to, at least). Aaronmichael5 21:04, 15 January 2021 (UTC).

You can do the same thing in Vegas. I may not like guns, but having shot several, there is something generally satisfying about it.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:17, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
There was a Bojack Horseman episode about just that, but it was about so many things as well and should've been broken out into like 3 episodes. But, it did give us the nice "thoughts and prayers" joke just a few weeks before the Vegas shooting that injured 500... CoryUsar (talk) 22:23, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
probably trying to appeal to the same - tourists. i'd imagine if you are visiting from an area where gun ownership is a rarity, it would like paying for the use of a sports car and taking it round brands hatch for a couple of laps. an opportunity that do something 'exciting' that you only ever see done by profession sports folk and for a pleasant couple of hours you can get a little taste of what life could have been like if you'd had a more exciting and reckless youth and life filled with fast cars and loose women instead the one were you have a middle age spread and midlife crisis and you've paid drive an f3 car round the track a few times and indulge a fantasy.
getting to shoot off some guns is probably a bit if thrill or at the very least a novelty for most visitors to states i'd imagine. 25 dollars sounds like a relatively cheap day out and a chance to indulge a gung ho fantasy. if i were stateside for some reason, id probably give it a go, just for the experience. i couldnt do anything like that here in the uk. i wonder if they give you a certificate fora memento? AMassiveGay (talk) 22:30, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
Even in the United States (with its NRA gun culture and all), you cannot purchase a new fully automatic gun since 1986 (thanks to a bill signed by Ronald Reagan, showing how times have changed). And even prior to this, thanks to a National Firearms ActWikipedia passed in 1934 (in lieu of Prohibition gangster violence), it took a fair bit of paperwork to get one. Because of this, there is very limited supply. Therefore, while owning a fully automatic gun is legal, most used fully automatics are now priced in the tens of thousands of dollars range. Dealers of fully automatic weapons must posses a Class 3 FFL license (which is a fair bit more painful than standard as I understand it) and there is significant paperwork involved to be an owner, or even sell the gun to someone else. I'm sure there's some foreign tourists that go for this as well, but honestly, with the bureaucracy and expense involved, there's also a large domestic tourist that this is aiming for, the way gun culture is over here. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 22:52, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I am an ex-soldier and love guns, despite also being a fucking commie in US fascist terminology - love the machinery, love the cause and distant effect. love the smell, the fel the physical presence........ fired guns for hire or as a guest in Ukraine and USA..... liking guns doesn't actually make you a right wing wanker.... but sadly it is one of hte wider indicators if others are also present! Aloysius the Gaul 23:23, 15 January 2021 (UTC)
I was gonna say I saw that billboard in Nevada, so second, RipCityLiberal. I fired a bb gun as a kid, I got into airsoft a little with some friends. I've never been paintballing. Went shooting real-deal with a group of guys one time out in the country, everybody but me brought a gun because, spoiler, I don't own a gun, and it was fun. There was one kid who was kinda dopey and he brought a .22 and kinda waved it around like a bb gun and it made everyone really uncomfortable, but he was like "no, I got it, my hand isn't anywhere near the trigger, stop freaking out," in kind of a brought-the-smallest-gun-gotta-prove-I-got-the-biggest-dick way that boys do. I got to fire a mosin, which was cool. The guy who owned it was a retired sniper, he caught every casing he ejected, told us all how expensive the rounds were and like, that was so cool, how was that not supposed to be cool? I caught the gun fever for a second. Then my senses hit me and I was like "but these things are designed to kill people." So I bought a pair of bamboo swords, and my friends and I couldn't be responsible with those even a little bit, so you know, guns are very fun in a specific environment, but Homer was right, the blade itself incites to deeds of violence. Gol Sarnitt (talk)
Along these lines, there were once some quasi-pornographic films that came out in the 1990s of scantily-clad women firing machine guns. Bongolian (talk) 19:36, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
This whole thread has been kinda interesting actually. I didn't know this site had so many people who actually liked guns. Maybe that's just what Conservapedia wanted me to think. Aaronmichael5 19:45, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Everyone likes guns, sex, drugs and alcohol. The issue is that all of them need clear, sensical rules to ensure that it's done safely. CoryUsar (talk) 22:30, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Looking back on my past[edit]

I cannot wrap my mind around the fact that I supported supported Donald Trump at one point. I know that I can lose my grip on reality sometimes due to mental illness. I am glad that common sense kicked in before it was too late. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 23:14, 15 January 2021 (UTC)

Exactly the same deal for me. The far-right propaganda hit me when my depression and anxiety were worse, coupled with my first ban from theotherwiki, and with my dad echoing it, I fell right in. I cheered for trumps first impeachment. To think I would had been at 1/6 if I didn’t get out is frightening. Sievert 81 (talk) 04:20, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
It's not entirely your fault. Exactly like Hitler, he was somewhat charming and very VERY charismatic. Most people (And by most, I do mean rational Conservatives, not the literal racists who still support him) voted him because they thought he was gonna help the economy strive and improve people's livelihoods, well he managed to do the opposite. There is also the undeniable fact that Hillary Clinton was opposing him and nobody liked Clinton, I have heard there were Democrats who voted Trump just to spite Clinton. 2A02:120B:C3C4:35C0:7825:26CF:BFEC:4E66 (talk) 00:35, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
A thing that bothers me is the fact that Trump and those like him prey on people with mental disabilities. Be it developmental or psychiatric. It is so damn unethical. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 01:33, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
I am convinced that Gun Girl, Poop Girl, you know her name, has fetal alcohol syndrome. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 07:38, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
As a petty jerk, one of the things I loved doing throughout Trump's term was reminding rabid supporters convinced he was going to win in a landslide victory in 2020 that he managed only an electoral win against America's most hated politician in 2016, and that not being named Clinton was an advantage he'd be sharing with whomever he ran against this time. Artificius (talk) 08:41, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

Is it wrong to troll Trump supporters on Twitter?[edit]

And how far is too far? Making fun of their kids? Trolling teenagers who support Trump? Trolling people with disabilities who support Trump? 2607:FB90:4283:A722:8010:F4E6:901A:5593 (talk) 01:49, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Not worth your time in my opinion. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 02:07, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Fucking around with twitter is a waste of time. It would be a much better use of your time to contribute to RationalWiki and document the abuses of the trump crowd here. For example, the mob has come together and created our article on the 2021 U.S. Capitol riot and made it into a great source for outing all the enablers, participants, and criminals involved in the insurrection against our country, all backed up by reputable sources. I'm proud of my contributions there and for every other mob member who's made that article. β€”cosmikdebris talk stalk 06:01, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Good post! Ditto on the article. I'm just completely blown away at how it's only a week old, and yet it's already grown to more than 111k bytes in size. In fact, I think I'd be comfortable giving it silver at this point β€” and I never thought I'd say this for such a young article, but once all the errors caused by all the users' and good-faith BoNs' scramble to add stuff in get ironed out we could even give it a gold brain! --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 22:19, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Yeah, I agree with Cosmik. The only good use of Twitter is when used as a demo for OnlyFans...
(ok ok, stupid joke, but there's really NOTHING of value from seeing celebrities yak about their opinions on stuff they know nothing about or posting pictures of the food they are about to turn into poop) CoryUsar (talk) 22:34, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Oh Cory, don't even get me started on how I have to put a conscious effort into pretending to care about such famous people whining about how hard and unfair their multimillionaire lives are, as well as into pretending to care about whether or not they think that the fact that a vaccine (Sinovac) made by Chinese university labs will soon be authorized for emergency use in thr US is "proof" that vaccines are the mark of the Beast propagated by communist Chinese socialist Jewish Muslim black atheist radical liberal 5G genetically-modified deep-state media antifas that will include microchips which will allow our God-King George Soros eyes and ears into our every move and turn us all into neuroatypical gays. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 07:09, 17 January 2021 (UTC)
I mean, it depends on the celebrity, and the problem. Lots of celebrities were sexually abused as children (and as celebrities), and I'll take my own yuppie problems over rich rape-victim problems, thank you very much. Attractive people can have problems too... CoryUsar (talk) 07:37, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

If this is true, we are going to be in for hell...[edit]

https://www.chicagotribune.com/nation-world/ct-nw-fbi-bulletin-armed-protests-20210111-4ayc73bv6bhwvpl77euctzexuy-story.html the FBI is warning of sieges on ALL 50 CAPITOLS. Holy shit. I was predicting at least 500 rioter deaths when they try to assassinate Biden on the 20th, but not all fucking 50. If rioters can break into a countries capitol, a states capitol will be a piece of cake. This is terrifying. I live 10 minutes from my states capitol. I want to document the protests/riots/insurrections that happen, but my parents are not letting me anywhere NEAR that shitshow (and rightfully so). The 20th is going to be the bloodiest day in America since 9/11. Sievert 81 (talk) 04:16, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

As disturbing as I find this, it seems that not all 50 state capitols are likely to be stormed by as many people as the national one in DC; some, like Kansas, Wyoming where nobody even lives and the New England states, where even most conservatives are somewhat more centrist, are not under credible threat but still deployed their National Guards just to be on the safe side. However, others like Michigan, Minnesota, the other Washington, Georgia, Florida, Arizona and Texas are the most vulnerable and are on high alert. (And also, I hear Washington State's capitol is one of the best-guarded, along with Arizona's and Minnesota's.) --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningSee my experiments 04:34, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
The creation of martyrs to the cause should set the rebellion back at least 10 years. Aloysius the Gaul 04:44, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
I wouldn't expect a big day. There is the confidence that Biden will die and Harris will be an unelected president, which is kinda like gambling. They'll be happy enough if it happens. I think they are "standing down and standing by" for a good stretch Gol Sarnitt (talk) 10:03, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
I also think it's stupid to institute metal detectors for your colleagues and fining them thousands of dollars, as if people have thousands of dollars, instead of just saying "You know why you can't have a gun in here, right? Nobody can have a gun in here, you understand that, right?" Fucking metal detectors, what a god damn rip on my freedom. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 10:17, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Why not just have a symbolic protest - eg a picture on a dartboard/archery target at which you can throw water bombs, paint or other material of choice? And have enough participants for the arrests and court appearances to clog up the legal system. (This is probably too subtle an approach for such protestors to appreciate.) Anna Livia (talk) 17:02, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
I wouldn't worry about it too much honestly. It might be a bit rocky, but I don't think we're gonna be living like Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome post Jan 20th just because of protesters. Aaronmichael5 19:43, 16 January 2021 (UTC)
Not with that attitude we won't. Who. Run. Bartertown. CoryUsar (talk) 22:19, 16 January 2021 (UTC)

Do any of u have any idea how risky Ohio is? I’m not American but someone very close to me and very vulnerable to these fuckheads lives there, and I’m just concerned for their safety. They don’t live like, super close to the capitol, but they also live a fuck load closer than I do and that is not great. I’m probably gonna need to chug a bucket of clonazepam on inauguration Day tbh so also uh preemptive warning that if I black out and say some dumb shit pls just block me for a while thanks. A S E L A ཊལྐ 03:59, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

The debates page[edit]

Over the past couple days, I've done some expanding of the Debate page. You guys think it looks any good at all? My goal is to get this page into at least a bronze category eventually. Aaronmichael5 4:30, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

It looks reasonably good to me. 'Bronze' is pretty much up to individual Sysops as long as it's better than the average article and not a stub. Bongolian (talk) 05:23, 17 January 2021 (UTC)
As the self-appointed God-Emperor of Rationalwiki, I have no extra authority so it doesn't actually matter. But you can change it to Bronze and I won't edit-war you over it. CoryUsar (talk) 05:29, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

Even if Trump dodges prison (somehow).....[edit]

He will be living in a mortgaged cardboard box. All those lawsuits will bankrupt his sorry ass. --Zombie Broadcasting Dude (talk) 14:23, 17 January 2021 (UTC)