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Are science and feminism mutually exclusive?[edit]

Feminism, I think, is poorly defined and thus encompasses many beliefs. I've experienced the conservative-leaning TERFs and teenagers that just think it's hip (speaking of teenagers, just look at the stereotype they have created).

But this article made me mad. Looking at this article will give the impression this is a liberal pro-science feminist writing this, but implies that the science distinguishing the binary male and female sex is wrong because science was wrong before, including racialism. The author then proceeds to say

What they fail to understand is that there are published scientific papers out there to support every possible opinion, even that black people are intellectually inferior to white people. Getting published doesn’t make an idea true, it only means that someone has managed to get it into print. In evolutionary psychology, theories are sometimes little more than speculation strung together with scant evidence.

Upon reading this I thought the author doesn't understand science, as she then compares this science with racialism. Since when did the scientific community legitimately accept these fringe ideologies as fact? And I've seen this kind of rationalizing in feminist courses, claiming science, economics, gender science, and racialism are equally flawed, and were created to dominate "lesser people." —Evo and Meta (speak, speak) | Look at what I've done! 21:14, 7 August 2017 (UTC)

No, I do not believe the two are mutually exclusive. Feminism encompasses a wide range of beliefs and thus, while the author of that article's "brand" of feminism may reject science, there are plenty of feminists who accept science. (Although it is a little disturbing that some of the arguments put forth in that article mirror those of creationists- "science has been wrong before", "science promotes immorality", etc.) 127.0.0.1 (talk) 22:41, 7 August 2017 (UTC)

One shitty feminist journalist does not feminism disprove.

I agree, however, that feminist (and other "progressive") journalists tend to have lower standards of evidence than skeptical writers, and that it's a problem. Kneejerk anti-bigotry has good intent and horrible execution. FᴜᴢᴢʏCᴀᴛPᴏᴛᴀᴛᴏ, Esϙᴜɪʀᴇ (talk/stalk) 23:03, 7 August 2017 (UTC)

Her argument is typical of the usual special pleading that is summoned against evolutionary psychology, which at its core is the simple and obvious notion that humans are identifiable by their behavior, and that basic human drives are the product of evolution. It generates hostility mostly because it shows that a unisex utopia probably isn't for humans or any other mammals. All she really needed to say was that 'is' doesn't imply 'ought'; human instincts are rather skeevy and contain no great moral truths. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 02:22, 8 August 2017 (UTC)

Feminism is a category, not a concept; it is not a fixed set of ideas but rather it is a set of perspectives from women's points of view that are generalized into coherent classes by encyclopedists, social critics, and public intellectuals: the perspectives are typically concerning the situation of women in general. One might consider a Feminist Perspective Scale. This particular scale has six classes: liberal feminism, radical feminism, socialist feminism, cultural feminism, womanism/ (Women of Color), and conservatism. I don't completely understand the test associated with this scale, but I did take the test, and I appear to be an upper mid-range Liberal Feminist. These online tests can be quite contradictory. Another one had me as a radical feminist. These divisions are an academic construct that somewhat clarifies the meaning of the word feminism. The definition should not be considered final with respect to its completeness.Ariel31459 (talk) 04:36, 8 August 2017 (UTC)

I am 43% Liberal Feminist, and 32% Woman of Color. Good to know. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 16:05, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
I am 42% Liberal Feminist, 32% Radical Feminist. Ariel31459 (talk) 17:49, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
Guys, guys, guys... The test results aren't given in percentages.
For example: I scored 50 at "Liberal Feminist", 31 at "Women of Color", 22 at "Socialist Feminist", 16 at "Radical Feminist", 16 at "Cultural Feminist" and finally 10 at "Conservative Feminist".
Were the results given in percentages, I'd be some sort of kickflipping über-feminist (i.e., apparently "152% feminist" in total).
Also, quite interestingly — just according to the test — the two of you (@Ariel31459 and @Smerdis of Tlön) are apparently harsher feminists (less liberal + more radical) than myself. Which could actually make a certain amount of relative sense, considering I'm of the ardently sex-positive sort. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 21:43, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
@Reverend Black Percy I did notice that, but since I didn't figure out the scale methodology, I went along with the % metaphor. The test doesn't provide interpretive advice. My total score was in the 160s.Ariel31459 (talk) 00:00, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
I have 47 in Liberal Feminism, 35 in Women of Color, 32 in Radical Feminism, 28 in Socialist Feminism, 20 in Cultural Feminism, and 12 in a column simply labeled "Conservative." Total score of 174. What does any of this mean? Also another thing I didn't get were all the questions about capitalism's impact on women. I couldn't tell whether the questions were about whether capitalism is the sole contributing factor to the oppression of women, or whether they were just asking whether I think it factors into it. Take for example, "Capitalism and sexism are primarily responsible for the increased divorce rate and general breakdown of families." Sure, I think the current values of our capitalist society factor into it, but I think it's likely that this would or could happen with any other economic system, I don't think the problem would be instantly magically solved if our society was just not capitalist. megalodon (talk) 17:42, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

Climate change questions checklist[edit]

I like to check if we have addressed the following concerns or myths about climate change:

  1. "The extreme weather events of 2017 means it is too late to avoid the worst or catastrophic outcome(s)."
  2. "Donald Trump will undo all our effort to prevent the worst of climate change."
  3. "There is no point in taking action if the government and/or industry is doing nothing about it."
  4. "I am just one person: I won't make any impact."

--User4501 (talk) 12:18, 8 August 2017 (UTC)

See this section and its video subsection. I think the 'arguments' you list are all covered there. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 14:46, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

I was in the video store last week and I went to the documentary section[edit]

There was plenty of Woo to go around. There was films promoting pseudoscience behind GMO's, bible documentaries acting like Genesis was a true story, one about the 2012 apocalypse and various others. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 13:45, 8 August 2017 (UTC)

I hear ya — the (often unwitting) consumption of woo has become a standard feature of popular culture, spread globally via social media, and right at a time when most public school systems are failing their students. If you ask me, that's what makes efforts like RationalWiki so relevant. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 15:07, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
Same thing here. Even worse, not only are the more well-known (sane) documentaries like Cosmos not being sold here, even the Public library has the same issue--Spoony (talk) 15:26, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
I will also note that good, actual documentaries tend to be taken off YouTube pretty fast by some copyright holder, while crank 'documentaries' stay up forever. Imagine what this does to the search results given when kids type "X documentary" in YouTube and just go by the apparent view count? Reverend Black Percy (talk) 15:43, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
It would be more accurate to say good, actual documentaries tend to be taken off YouTube pretty fast by someone who claims to be the copyright holder. As has been stated many times YouTube's copyright system is a disaster and allows people who don't own the copyright or don't give a darn about fair use to take down videos. Many of the improper claims are simply because someone doesn't like what is in the video and has nothing to do with copyright. For example, videos critical of a game have been removed by people abusing YouTube's copyright system; see This video is no longer available: The Day One Garry's Incident Incident for an example of this behavior. Popular YouTubers have the clout can fight these abusers while many don't and the video goes down forever.--BruceGrubb (talk) 12:53, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Goodpost.gif Those are some very good posts! The Rational Gamer, WonderKirby577Let's chat! 01:36, 18 August 2017 (UTC)
Documentaries have long been a format for propaganda. Considering even good documentaries that are relatively accurate tend towards creating narratives, it's a really easy format to hide bullshit in. I'm not even sure the internet has done anything to exacerbate this, other than every tinpot studio is now aiming at enough production values to get on netflix? ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:14, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
Of course, documentaries create narratives, practically every form of human communication does. Where I suspect the internet has probably had a detrimental effect is partly the indirect filtering effect on YT mentioned by The Rev., partly due to the "megaphone effect" which I've seen described vis-a-vis Alex Jones as the difference being that in the pre-digital age, he would be the weirdo handing out mimeographedWikipedia's W.svg flyers at the bus station or ranting on some obscure shortwave radio frequency. Then there's the effect that a drastic reduction in cost of and access to the necessary equipment (video, sound, editing etc,) has had in enabling a host of cranks to be able to produce their very own crankomentaries peddling their particular brand(s) of woo. Of course, the upside is that this has also allowed debunking to be equally easy and professional looking, too. ScepticWombat (talk) 16:31, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, but people need to see the debunking, and that doesn't really happen. The audience for debunking videos is "people who like to see things debunked". Which has, in turn, led to the subset of conspiracy peddlers who promote themselves as rational skeptics "debunking" things ways inappropriate to the the subject matter. see: antifeminism. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:53, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
While I know you to hold certain 'categorical biases' against the entire medium in question (as compared to text) — though not supposing myself free of bias, of course; rather I hold the inverse bias — you make a perfectly important point (as does the Wombat). One major reason I have serious qualms about answering the question "So, what do you do?" with "Well, I'm a skeptic" is because doing so would entail a lot of explanatory tedium about how I certainly don't mean to say I'm a 'climate skeptic' (or the likes) by that. Though, I suppose openly self-identifying (in any serious sense) as being 'rational', 'skeptical', etc, isn't a practice I'd ever wish upon myself in any case. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 16:22, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
The kicker was the documentary about the Burzyski Clinic (It was free to rent, still probably too much money)--Rationalzombie94 (talk) 18:45, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
There's something about the format that can become off-putting. I've enjoyed a number of Adam Curtis documentaries (keep getting him mixed up with the Joy Division guy, whose documentaries I'd watch in a heartbeat). Half the time he seems interesting and insightful. The other times he seems like some kind of nutjob who overdosed on John Gray books and got mazed on Wikipedia. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 19:02, 8 August 2017 (UTC)
I'll definitely agree with Smerdis on Adam Curtis. I personally think his best work is The Century of the Self, exactly because it contains less "cantilevered hypotheses" than, say, All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace which while raising some interesting points also tends to oversell/-hype them. After The Century of the Self, the second and third best are probably The Mayfair Set and The Trap after which there's quite a gap down to The Power of Nightmares, Pandora's Box and All Watched Over... as well as his two most recent works, Bitter Lake and Hypernormalisation, while I consider The Living Dead his weakest work. ScepticWombat (talk) 15:40, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Glad to hear it's not just Alex Jones recommending The Century of the Self. And I do mean that; The Century of the Self is on my 'to-watch list' — it just has been since way back during my crank teenage years. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 16:12, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
The first episode of All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace does contain an excellent retelling of the always fascinating drama of Ayn Rand and her circle. I'm surprised no composer has yet turned it into an opera, to my knowledge. (And the title is a Richard Brautigan reference, which always helps.) - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 16:19, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
As with most 'cure-all'-themed political factions, nothing could be more interesting — or telling — than appraising the given views of said faction in light of the relative madnesses of its originator figure(s). Reverend Black Percy (talk) 16:30, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Happy to agree with Smerdis (again) about the interesting, rather cultish sounding depiction of Rand's small circle (jerk) in All Watched Over..., but that it also sits somewhat awkwardly with Curtis' overarching theme in that series, that of a unrealistic, idealised, mechanistic recreation of a "stable natural system" - yeah, yeah, I know the link is the belief in a "self-regulating market", but considering that the two subsequent episodes deal with biology, the initial episode is still sort of the odd man out of the series. I'll also confess to having a weak spot for Curtis' visual "collage" style, although that too can go a bit overboard at times.
Btw, there are several versions of Century... available at YT, Rev., so cosy up with a cup of hot chocolate or something on a grey fall weekend and binge watch them, or simply chill out with and episode each evening. It's good edutainment and I actually know of a university associate professor who has used parts of it in a course (I think it was on the history of ideas and/or psychohistory). ScepticWombat (talk) 17:02, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, buddy! I'll be certain to bump it on my list Th hug.gif Also — perhaps slightly off-topic — speaking of Randean cirkle jerking auto-fellatio... Facepalm.png Reverend Black Percy (talk) 17:06, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
No worries. Come to think of it, I've used snippets of Curtis in my own teaching too. One about the perverse effects of NPM (New Public ManagementWikipedia's W.svg) with its focus on targets and how the system was "gamed" by public sector employees in Blair's Britain as an example of the pitfalls of NPM in a course on management in the public sector, and I think I've also used some of the examples of Bernay's (for its time) innovative advertising as part a course in communication
As for randroids and cults, another interesting overlap is that both free market and religious fundies have set up their own parallel "education and research" systems mimicking the trappings of actual academia with the addition of various types of ring fencing of free, sceptical enquiry; compare, say, fundie schools with the Ludwig von Mises Institute, (parts of) George Mason University or the (very much strings attached) Koch-funded departments at otherwise legitimate educational institutions. ScepticWombat (talk) 17:13, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Very true, and I'll also add to your enumeration of such "ring fenced" 'pseudo-academias' their noteworthy existence in various Communist contexts as well — ranging from minor cells and local juntas, all the way to being a core 'feature' of the educational systems of entire Soviet republics. At the national level, the latter largely being the ones responsible for spending all those countless gallons of ink needed for certain litterature to 'trickle down' to moonbats everywhere, both western and third world, in the pre-digital era... But I digest.
Getting back broadly on the topic of advertising, mass psychology, public management and the likes — one man who has been getting far too little attention (specifically in that same 'contextual arena' which Century of the Self dedicates mainly to Freud and Bernays) is John B. WatsonWikipedia's W.svg.
Sure, every high schooler taking introductory psychology gets to hear about Watson (typically after Pavlov and before Skinner). But what they don't tend to bring up is how tremendous Watson's impact actually was after he took his seminal discoveries in psychology, left the field, and specifically adopted his work for use in advertising insteadWikipedia's W.svg (and in management; especially personell selection). For example...
Ever heard a celebrity spokesperson endorse a product? Well, guess who came up with that? Watson!
And never mind celebrities — ever heard or seen a so-called testemonial, on TV-shop or otherwise, wherein 'regular people' explain what some product or service supposedly did for them? Well, guess who invented that? Same Watson!
Here's some random links. If you hadn't heard about this, considering especially your concern with the concept of management, I'd suggest you wrap your head around Watson's legacy. Sure, it's all history now, but it's both interesting and elucidating. Many of Watson's contributions to the field still see use, in one form or another.
From a purely therapeutic standpoint, in the light of what we know today, it's perhaps easy to 'poke fun' both at Freud and Behaviorism — and yet, unbeknownst to many, much successful adaptation of their work went on to make it into mainstream public relations, advertising and related fields. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 17:58, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Watson's influence certainly sounds interesting, although Wikipedia mentions that testimonials far predated Watson (I agree that he may have put a more psychological spin on the genre, though). For instance, you can find similar types of ads in the marketing of "patent medicines" and other products in the 19th century when you browse vintage ads (yes, I'm weird, I know...). It is also clear that Bernays was drawing extensively on Gustave Le BonWikipedia's W.svg and Wilfred TrotterWikipedia's W.svg (C-SPAN's Lectures in History podcast had a good episode in Bernays and PR, but it appears that it doesn't keep these lectures for long in the feed).

Taking PR (reputedly a word of Bernay's invention, though that infamous flimflam man may have "borrowed" and simply popularised it) to far more extensive levels, I'd also look at the Committee on Public InformationWikipedia's W.svg as perhaps the most widespread and systematic effort at "perception management" until that time at the level of an entire, modern state. I think the idea of the Four Minute MenWikipedia's W.svg was a particularly interesting, and (for its time) very advanced and American initiative (a mass, volunteer, layman initiative, rather than relying on "experts" or "opinion makers"). In general, I think that it is in the era from roughly 1900-1920, and particularly with WWI, that "societal modernity" really becomes apparent and that this is the time from which we can begin to clearly recognise trends that are still with us today. ScepticWombat (talk) 18:53, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

Well, I'll be...! My cite for Watson having invented it is a lecture given by the excellent Professor Steven Gimbel in the following course. I'll have to dig that back up and see if I'm not actually misquoting the good professor on it.
As for the rest — some I had heard, much I had not. Very interesting, at any rate. I'll be sure to read up on it all. In the meantime, I wanna see if I can't dig up that Gimbel quote and set the record straight one way or the other. All the best, Reverend Black Percy (talk) 20:46, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Well, it might be that the professor was using a specific definition/version of the testimonial when he highlighted Watson as the inventor. It might be that Watson codified the "modern" testimonial which is not necessarily using praise of the products direct effects, but more on it supposed psychological aspects (e.g. it will make you more "glamorous", "successful", or "free"). Contrast with the outrageous testimonials about patent medicines and other panacea where the lavish praise of the product's immediate effects would more resemble those of, say, today's weight loss commercials. ScepticWombat (talk) 21:57, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

Looking for a Qoute...[edit]

It was either on here or was linked to that other wiki. It was either Latin or Italian and had something to do with reason or intelligence. It was pretty short, only one sentence I believe. I know that I'm not being very helpful but I had it saved as a bookmark and my computer passed away. Was supposed to be a tattoo. Thank you.Slowcooked (talk) 17:52, 8 August 2017 (UTC)slowcooked

We Have https[edit]

Sitting in a tent in a state park, freezing my ass off, this development makes me so happy. RoninMacbeth (talk) 13:28, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

Encrypted socket-layer protection: perfect for your camping needs! Mʀ. Wʜɪsᴋᴇʀs, Esϙᴜɪʀᴇ (talk/stalk) 14:49, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
@RoninMacbeth For all our flaws, you can atleast rest assured that the current board is actively pursuing the issues. Hey, I'm surprised too, but we are! Th hug.gif Reverend Black Percy (talk) 16:07, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

Is WW3 imminent?[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Betteridge's law of headlines

North Korea-United States war

I read that Kim and Trump, two megalomaniacal dictators, are one-upping each other with thinly-veiled declarations of war. I mean, it isn't unusual for the reincarnate of Benito Mussolini to have a diplomatic dick-measuring contest with other nations, but is Trump insane enough to fire at North Korea? Kim Jong Un, aka "Fat Bastard" from Austin Powers, for his part, hasn't helped either. North Korea is offering contradictory statements at every turn, at one point stating that "they will only use their nuclear arsenal if a foreign power attacks us first", and then at another point stating that they'll launch a preemptive strike towards the US. I also don't know the legitimacy of the site I linked to, it could be a tabloid for all I know.--Palaeonictis (talk) 14:32, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

they're a left wing tabloid, pretty unreliable, I doubt WW3 is imminent. Christopher (talk) 14:39, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Oh. I had never come across them before, so I wasn't sure if I should take it at face value or not.--Palaeonictis (talk) 15:32, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Really the whole media has been rather irresponsible with this. NK is still missing critical parts of a workable nuclear ICBM that could hit Guam or anywhere else. They won't have it until at least next year. All of this escalation is likely a strategy by us to raise the stakes to force China to do something about the situation. They like the status quo enough that they want to preserve it, but the US is trying to force them to choose between Kim Jong Un or war. If it does end up working out the way he wants it to, with China stepping in to force NK to stand down and halt its nuclear program, then Trump will be hailed as some kind of military genius by the right. If it doesn't work out the way he wants... well needless to say, it would not be good for anyone. Hentropy (talk) 17:04, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
No, but I forsee Trump causing the death of millions of Koreans and hundreds to thousands of Americans with an unnecessary war to show "strength". Fascists gonna fasc. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:19, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
You're not seriously entertaining fears of Trump presiding over nuclear war? Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:06, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
They've fully adopted the fascist chic where their enemies are both lessor and pathetic and a threat to existence of the chosen class at the same time. Trump is both an incompetent childish cheeto joke and a "megalomaniacal dictator" who earns comparisons to Mussolini for his ideological fortitude and political prowess. Lord Aeonian (talk) 18:26, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
You are a goddamn idiot, you fuckstick. Of course he's both a fucking incompetent moron(look at him) and extremely powerful(he's the president of the united states, that entails a shitton of power). This is not ur-fascism but incredibly obvious. He'll start a war, he may or may not use nuclear weapons, which he's shown an infantile obsession with, but millions will die. Again: fuck you. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:34, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
You're making me hope he does, just to see China churn the West a bit. Would be satisfying on many levels :D Lord Aeonian (talk) 19:03, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
With a penchant for convoluted over-the-top utterances, Kim Jong Un tends to exaggerate and dramatize everything. Leuders (talk) 19:44, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

No. WW3 is not even likely. 1) The US would not use nuclear weapons in NK because Seoul and US troops would be affected by the nuclear blast. 2) even though Trump is a dumb fuck, he has respectable military advisers, and the Secretary of Defense knows such an order would be illegal and criminal, and would certainly prevent it rather than go to prison for war crimes. Trump has no enforcement police, when the military tells him to fuck off as they most surely would. 3) At this point the only thing the NK missiles can hit for certain is the Pacific Ocean. It is likely the miniaturization claim is false. Also, NK missiles do not afford re-entry technology so they are useless as ballistic weapons. Ariel31459 (talk) 21:39, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

You're being a bit optimistic. "Mad Dog" Mattis is a war hawk, though he's at least presumably saner than Trump. Also, bombing North Korea does not automatically mean WW3. Bongolian (talk) 23:32, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
@Bongolian Yes, I am. Leave one word out of the Serenity Prayer, that's me. Some people might be seriously upset about the situation. They shouldn't be.Ariel31459 (talk) 00:25, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

Pity 'they' can't set up a 'Big Brother TV series house' and put all the nuisance-leaders in it. 86.191.88.188 (talk) 22:02, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

I was going to suggest Trump and Kim face off for 18 holes of golf. It seems Kim is pretty good but Trump has gotten a lot of practice lately. Leuders (talk) 23:52, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
@Palaeonictis I am still nervous about N.Korea just as much as you are, but I cannot let it effect my own personal life. I have many other things to worry about such as student loans, vacations, my writings and my planned novel. So what I am saying is that you should stay as rational as possible. Also I would avoid reading the Mirror as they are a known tabloid newspaper, read a better newspaper or magazine such as the Guardian or the New Yorker. S.H. DeLong (talk) 03:14, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
@Leuders MFW
@S.H. DeLong Damn straight! Notice what the hatnote at the veeery top of this thread reads? Right under the headline? Well, it's true you know. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 03:23, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Fun:North_Korean_Rhetorical_Bingo. It had to happen. Leuders (talk) 23:07, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

There's a game in whose setting -a world-spanning empire a la Roman one- when two countries went to war they practiced what basically was a controlled one, with very strict rules (no damage to civilians, etc) and arbiters of said empire that governed the world ensuring said rules were followed. Pity that's impossible in the real world. As that world leaders solved that kind of issues among themselves in a boxing ring and the like, as much is more than likely Kim would curb-stomp Trump. Panzerfaust (talk) 10:24, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

My Bipolar medication has stopped working[edit]

I got my appointment at the psychiatrist office switched from November to next week. My mood swings have gotten very erratic, 3-5 day intervals between manic and depressed. Any suggestions till I can get to the psych office?--Rationalzombie94 (talk) 18:33, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

If your problems suddenly become acute, make sure you seek help as acutely. Proper medication can make all the difference. All the best, Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:53, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Just try to remember to affirmatively contextualize extreme thoughts you find yourself having. You'll make it. You're tough. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:54, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
@RZ Oh, and if you find yourself forgetting: write yourself a PostIt (and place where you'll always see it) which reads "Remember: it's just the lack of meds". Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:55, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Thanks. I have been dealing with it since the medication stopped working.--Rationalzombie94 (talk) 18:58, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Obviously it's proof that science has failed and you need homeopathy and psychic surgery. Diacelium (talk) 22:19, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Goodpost.gif Or enroll into a fundie school... Reverend Black Percy (talk) 23:01, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
To be honest, I was actually considering enrollment at Liberty University online. No I am not a rabid fundie or a Christian. I figured that if I could understand their doctoral dissertations, it would be easy. But I changed my mind. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 02:02, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

Got a medication change at the psychiatrist office[edit]

I got my Lamictal raised and an 50 mg addiction of regular Seroquel to my regular Seroquel XR --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 22:40, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Just saying hello and thanks for the warm welcome[edit]

When I first stumbled upon this project my first thought was "oh wow this is exactly my kind of thing". Writing witty articles about nutjobs for the advancement of science. Could there be anything better? Anyway, I'm curious if I find a topic here where I suddenly realize that I am the ignorant fool. --Mad physicist (talk)

Welcome indeed! Th hug.gif Please allow me recommend the following dope skeptical reading. All the best, Reverend Black Percy (talk) 23:00, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Welcome to the Rationalwiki family Mad physicist! You will find plenty of stuff to do. Great website to be on. Interesting discussions and plenty of mocking nuts. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 22:33, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

The Faulty Walnut[edit]

Obligatory reminder of what everyone is actually like. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 22:58, 9 August 2017 (UTC)

Any word when Walnut 2.0 is going to be released? I mean I was always aware of some flaws in the current version but this video made me aware again of the rather long list of issues that need to be fixed! --Mad physicist (talk) 23:35, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
Makes it sound like modern society is a mistake and that man should return to the "state of nature". Machina (talk) 02:18, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
@Mad_Physicist Indeed! Check out this quote as well; it's one of my favorites.
@Machina Save it, Rosseau Facepalm.png Reverend Black Percy (talk) 03:12, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

Welcome to the latest "science proves women can't work tech jobs" drama[edit]

http://www.businessinsider.com/james-damore-diversity-manifesto-science-logical-fallacy-2017-8 FU22YC47P07470 (talk/stalk) 14:41, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

The science is irrefutable: the y chromosome evolved in a computer-rich environment, and the x chromosome didn't. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:09, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
Here's a piece about the aforementioned manifesto. RoninMacbeth (talk) 16:01, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
I was with him until he started talking about how women were better engineers because they were more naturally more empathetic or emotionally intuitive. The whole point of this is that we shouldn't be hiring based purely on statistical averages and generalizations about the biological traits of men and women, we should be hiring based on what makes a better overall company. There's nothing wrong with coming out and saying that hiring more women, even if they're not as great as coding at the entry level as some of the guys, is helpful to the overall company for a myriad of reasons. If you staff your engineers with 90% white male coding wizards, you will have great code for your failing web services and products. There's also nothing wrong with hiring women to encourage more people get into STEM fields, which helps everyone in the long run. There's a recent tendency among liberal feminists to ignore this aspect and try to counter this "biological imperative" bullshit with more biological bullshit of their own. The fact that he was unwilling to delve into the gender issue doesn't help his case either. I'm also not sure about martyring him by firing him, just makes it certain he'll have a new opinion column on Breitbart. Hentropy (talk) 17:13, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

That so needs debunking and quick --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 17:02, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

Even a scientist he quoted says he's full of it - David Gerard (talk) 17:25, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
Why does it "so need" debunking? Why would anything "so need" debunking? It smells of a prejudicial line of thinking, and IMO is irrational. Skepticism is a very good thing, and if you find a flaw in the argument, then by all means, point it out, but don't make any logical fallacies of your own along the way. ~~— Unsigned, by: 98.165.73.70 / talk

There are scientists who agree with the basic science in the "manifesto". Most of the ones who speak out are certainly conservatives. Some are not. Bring out the fainting couches. Ariel31459 (talk) 17:49, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

The main thing to take away from this IMO is that you are ruled by the people who sign your paychecks rather than the people you vote for. This is of course the great flaw of pseudo-libertarianism. Also, that guy, and everybody in a similar situation, really needed to organize a union. And yes, it does suck that we have a 'Left' with persecutory instincts, who too frequently adopt the tone and shunning tactic of outraged piety, and which would prefer to wield power through human-resources bullshit than stick up for a fellow who got screwed by his boss. And why do we know the author's name but not the leaker's? - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 18:06, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
The only thing that needs debunking is the evo-psych garbage that seems to permeate whenever a question about women in any workplace is brought up. The rest of it is pretty inoffensive. The author of the manifesto even goes as far as suggesting people should be stigmatized less for stepping out of society's expectation of gender roles, although granted, mainly in the context of men. megalodon (talk) 18:14, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
Goodpost.gif The emphasis obviously being on garbage, not on "evolutionary psychology" (since we're not Creationists). The guy who wrote that manifesto demonstrates quite well what 'folk' pseudo-EP looks like. Facepalm.png Reverend Black Percy (talk) 20:18, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
According to some authorities ( kids with real PhD science diplomas), it reads like an engineer writing outside his area of expertise, not pseudo-science. Google can fire anyone for any reason at any time. Such is capitalism,..tsk... They really shouldn't lie about their reasons. It will bugger them.Ariel31459 (talk) 20:32, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
That's funny, considering an engineer writing outside of his area of expertise is often all it takes to produce military grade pseudoscience. Though admittedly, 'folk psychology' alone is pseudoscientific already. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 21:01, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
heh, heh, heh...Real Scientists already have defended the thesis. e.g., Dr. Peterson at Toronto U, who is no crank, though no doubt some would rather he were one. By the way, I am not supporting the thesis, others do. I don't agree with Google's head-up-its-own-ass approach.Ariel31459 (talk) 21:11, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
Damore is an idiot for emailing this to his company, apparently it's just terrible that women are in the workplace yadda yadda yadda. Do we have an article on biological differences between men and women which analyzes gender superiority? I’d be interested in that because I hear crank parrots repeating this kind of stuff, because you know what’s sad? There’s millions of people like Damore that think discriminating against conservatives because of dumb ideas is just terrible.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 22:56, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, that's what the geniuses at Google think too.Ariel31459 (talk) 01:38, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

I don't go along with the article.

At first Damore does not say that the difference is only biological. He accepts biases as another one: "Of course, men and women experience bias, tech, and the workplace differently and we should be cognizant of this, but it’s far from the whole story." (if I interpret the quote correctly). (Just because the article sounds a bit like he would do.)

The article argues that Damore is confusing correlation with causation. But we know that were are some differences between males and females. And this differences correlate pretty good with the amount of people of each gender who work in a the tech or have higher positions. You can find some kind of this differences in all cultures and even in babies and apes so it can be assumed that they are partly biological. This means that differences in the amount of males and females in the job are indeed partly founded in biology. For this reason the article is also wrong then it says "Using Damore's logic, if a 'scientist' had taken measurements in the UK between 1939 and 1945, he may have concluded that women's exposure to prenatal testosterone made them predisposed, on average, to munitions manufacturing.". In this case there would be no correlation between the gender differences and the distribution in the jobs.

The article also says "The idea that your exposure to hormones as an embryo will somehow skew your entire career just isn't true. If our pre-natal hormones controlled our job prospects then women's work would not have changed much over time. In fact, it has changed dramatically." To say that Damore thinks that "pre-natal hormones controlled our job prospects" is a straw man. He has never said that the hormones are the only reason. (In the quote above he explicitly says the opposite. If I interpret the quote wrong (I'm not sure about it) one could argue that it is an implicit premise, but it would be quite absurd.) Of course the career is also determined from social factors. And of course the gender distribution has changed because the social factors have changed. But this is not a rebuttal for the fact that prenatal hormones also have an influence.

I couldn't find more arguments than this in the article.

If I see it right Jim Edwards is no expert or so in this domain. Maybe it's better to read texts from scientists who have a clue about the theme instead of some journalists: http://quillette.com/2017/08/07/google-memo-four-scientists-respond/. (I know, I have already posted it on WIGO:Blogs. Also Quilette tends to right-wing so the scientists could been cherry picked or the ones who are more critical to the memo just felt more attracted to the magazine. But this does not change the fact that this four agree at least partly with the memo.) --Takesam (talk) 22:05, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

Assuming for the sake of argument that differences between typical male and female psychology lead to tech jobs being less attractive on the whole to women than to men, this does not invalidate the 'diversity' belief system as such. All it really does is to suggest that the ideal egalitarian utopia will be difficult to achieve, and that the results of diversity policies will not necessarily lead to the ideal egalitarian utopia in practice. This is hardly an excuse not to bother, especially since the diversity belief system is a morality, or at least an etiquette. We don't give up on enforcing laws against murder just because we realize that law cannot eliminate murder. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 18:16, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

Damore does not reject diversity ("I value diversity and inclusion, am not denying that sexism exists, and don’t endorse using stereotypes."). Also he makes proposals to raise the amount of women by making the jobs more attractive to women (see section "Non discriminatory ways to reduce the gender gap" of his memo).

But if the differences in jobs between males and females would be only biological (what Damore does not say) there is no reason to push more women into tech jobs (with qutoas or so). If you would do women who are less interested or less qualified than men would get the job which is unfair and inefficient. But you could maybe change the job to the advantage of women, as Damore proposes. There is the exception that more diverse teams could work better (I do not know the science to this). If there are biases countermeasures could be good. But I don't think the government should force the companies to do this but the companies should do this themselves. It is good for the company to fight biases so they will. Also there are differences in interest and qualification not due to biology but to the society. In this cases it may be a good idea to change the society but I don't think that this is a reason to push woman into the jobs. As already said than less interested or qualified women would get the job instead the more interested or better qualified men. --Takesam (talk) 23:50, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Wired: The actual science of James Damore’s Google memo[edit]

TL;DR: Evolutionary Psychology isn't wrong, though Damore is. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 22:14, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

How do i get involved more?[edit]

Is there an IRC or something? Forum?

Great place which i check for 2 years now every now and then. I wonder how big the community is and if there is certain guideline or generally how it works. — Unsigned, by: 178.59.139.174 / talk / contribs

We used to have an IRC, but it got blown away. Here's our Forum. Here's our user list, to give you an idea of how large our community is. Here's our community standards, which provide some guidelines for RationalWiki users. Lastly, please read these instructions on how to properly sign your edits on talk pages and the Saloon Bar. Thank you for contributing to RationalWiki! CJ-Moki (talk) 06:22, 11 August 2017 (UTC)
Use this page to monitor recent activity, the page you posted this on is much more active than the forums. Christopher (talk) 12:54, 11 August 2017 (UTC)
The forum isn't used that much. It's more or less a zombie at this point.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 23:19, 11 August 2017 (UTC)
I owned the freenet RationalWiki, once upon a time. Linus ran it until he went to college. C®ackeЯ 06:26, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
you can also check out the to do list to see new articles people want or other problems with the wiki if you feel the need to be productive for some reason but I'm echoing the others who said that the saloon is the most active place for communication. Vorarchivist (talk) 19:15, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

Things I've learned listening to an evangelical radio station[edit]

This will be very familiar to US people. Comments are in italics (there're more, such as NWO BS that the Catholic Church wants to stablish) but those are the ones I can remember best):

  • Never mind how kind you're to other people, as long as you do not accept Jesus as your savior you're going to burn in Hell for all eternity (It seems also that, conversely you may be as evil as Stalin but as long as you repent in your deathbed you'll go to Heaven)
  • Jesus is the only who gives eternal salvation and life, not Buddha, Confucius, and whatever (don't know if Confucianism offers something as that, but never heard of it. Also maybe the ones who say that should check this list of gods. This especially goes for that woman who attempted to evangelize me and when I trolled her telling I had my religion condemned me to burn in Hell)
  • Microevolution (small changes caused by mutations) is right. Macroevolution (species popping up), not. Also Science should not study Creation (for the former see here. For the latter, knowing that the more Science progress the less space is left for a God as the one described in the Bible it's understood why. Alas, the Big Bang theory has a beauty that Genesis, as beautiful as it may be as a poetic work, lacks)
  • Catholicism is refurbished paganism and the Virgin Mary just a refurbished Queen of Heaven, who was venerated along Yahweh (true that some Saints were pagan gods, but keep ignoring that Saints and Mary are basically middlemen. Also, conveniently ignore that Asherah, the Queen of Heaven, was venerated along with Yahweh because she was her wife).
  • The degeneracy of the traditional family is a sign of Sodom and Gomorrah, that the End Times are close (yes, because gays and the like outnumber heterosexual people and will outlaw the traditional familyy. As for the End Times thing, 'nuff said)
  • The Devil is loose in the world. Everything bad happens because of him (Leaving aside the bad situation in which that fact leaves God's omnipotence and omnibenevolence they'd read their Bible's OT and see the way Satan acts there. The less is said about the conclusion of that the better)
  • Christianity is not a religion, is a way of life (I guess then you'll not want tax exemptions and the like).

Panzerfaust (talk) 13:06, 11 August 2017 (UTC)

@Cosmikdebris Reverend Black Percy (talk) 13:52, 11 August 2017 (UTC)
On the first point, the whole "you can be an axe-murdering-child-rapist and still get into a heaven if you confess/get saved" is more of a Catholic thing. The evangelical version would be more like "you can be an axe-murdering-child-rapist, but if you get saved and dunk your head in water and let Jesus into your heart, it's impossible for you to be evil again unless you renounce Jesus." The whole concept is qualitative you could say, true Christians who have accepted Jesus won't be totally evil and you can't just absolve it all through a confessional once you've been saved. This might also help you understand Point 6, the "devil" not being a literal red guy hopping around and whispering in people's ears, his main job isn't even to directly cause evil, but to convince people to turn away from God (this website is the DEVIL I tell you!), which leads to evil acts. Everyone has to answer for their sins, so if you try to get saved on your deathbed, it's between you and god whether or not it's sincere or not, they don't guarantee anything the same way the Catholics kinda try to at times. On point two, chances are they cherry-pick those two because they're not actual gods or prophets, to avoid having to talk about Ganesha or any number of others gods. On Point 4, the idea that Catholicism is rebranded paganism is fairly well tied to Restorationism, which is where evangelicalism comes from, and really isn't without total merit, there's little doubt that certain Roman/Byzantine mythological ideas crept in there when they became all Jesus-crazy. Hentropy (talk) 17:19, 11 August 2017 (UTC)
For more of what-you-do-doesn't-matter type of Christianity, see deathbed conversion (just convert at the last moment and you'll go to Heaven), Calvinism and Hyper-Calvinism. Bongolian (talk) 01:20, 12 August 2017 (UTC)
The evangelical version would be more like "you can be an axe-murdering-child-rapist, but if you get saved and dunk your head in water and let Jesus into your heart, it's impossible for you to be evil again unless you renounce Jesus."
Thank Jack Chick then for his tracts giving me a wrong idea. Still looks like BS.
the "devil" not being a literal red guy hopping around and whispering in people's ears, his main job isn't even to directly cause evil, but to convince people to turn away from God (this website is the DEVIL I tell you!), which leads to evil acts.
Not few of the times I've heard them talking about him, they complain about everything bad being caused by the Devil. The same issues about omni*** stil apply.
On point two, chances are they cherry-pick those two because they're not actual gods or prophets, to avoid having to talk about Ganesha or any number of others gods
I'd swear they included Muhammad once. Or maybe they do not simply know about Hinduism, just Greco-Roman ones who are for worshipping purposes pretty much forgotten.
the idea that Catholicism is rebranded paganism is fairly well tied to Restorationism, which is where evangelicalism comes from, and really isn't without total merit, there's little doubt that certain Roman/Byzantine mythological ideas crept in there when they became all Jesus-crazy.
Not just that -Halloween is the rebranded Celtic Samain, some hermitages located in places as mountains or close to rivers as well as churches are located over previous Pagan temples or worship places, and both those worshipped deities and the feasts about them were absorbed into Catholicism becoming invocations of Mary or saints...-. I find funny that other quote I heard was "abandon all that tradition for something new", when that "new" thing actually predates Catholicism "as is" and it's even debatable if it's really the "True Christianism™" practiced during Roman times. Panzerfaust (talk) 12:25, 12 August 2017 (UTC)
Now this is one of my pet peeves. Truth is, we don't know a whole lot about Celtic Samhain except that it was the name of a month; in Irish it's November. There is simply zero evidence that 'Samhain' was the name of a deity, much less a god of death. Now the association of Halloween with the dead comes directly from Catholicism and their feasts of All Saints/All Souls Nov. 1 and 2; the Mexican Day of the Dead is unambiguously Catholic, and preserves Catholic traditions of visiting cemeteries and memento mori themes that once were common in Europe as well. Now there are many reasons why I'd never join the Roman Catholic Church - their leader thinks he needs an earthly kingdom, they are antidemocratic in structure, they revere bones and relics, and pray to the spirits of the dead and other beings who are not God. On the other hand, most of these beliefs are original to them, and only a tiny handful of them continue classical paganism in any direct way. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 22:06, 12 August 2017 (UTC)
And what about Thoth, Marduk, Freya, Baron Samedi, Valhalla, Gehenna...
Heaven is 'a very large place' - if you want to 'wander around endlessly praising the one you believe to be the one true God' you can do that, if you want to be in the gated area where 'all true Christians' go, that is entirely up to you - and the rest of us can go explore (and watch the Vikings-versus historical re-enactment societies events followed by feasting if we wish to so indulge).
Perhaps the 'Christian God Botherers' (well he does refrain from smiting their perceived villains etc) should be told that #their# description of heaven looks rather like other people's idea of hell (doing nothing but praise God, all the thieves, murderers, bounty hunters and psychopaths etc who converted at the last moment are really not people most of us wish to be associated with etc etc). 109.158.61.138 (talk) 23:38, 12 August 2017 (UTC)
I'd prefer to reincarnate in another species, even if it's a methane breather of a Godforsaken planet, and start a new life (just an Universe as ludicrously big as this one has a lot of possibilities, not to mention if there were others, ). Jokes apart, when I was talking about Samhain I was refering to the supposed Celtic feast of the same name. It's still celebrated the supposed traditional way, with bonfires, etc. at least on northernmost Spain and Ireland. As for the BoN comment, very much so. The Pascal's wager article and comments on the annotated bible mention that issue and the Salvation War series delineates it a bit more (it's not pretty) Panzerfaust (talk) 10:17, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Probably most people are willing to follow the doctrine of 'be as ethical as you can, as far as possible do good or at least be neutral, be courteous to those around you, and be courteous to your God in particular and other gods, deities and supernatural entities in general, follow your faith and respect those of others.'
The 'Grand and Eternal Union of Gods, Deities and Other Supernatural Entities' will provide appropriate heavens and other forms of afterlife for their various followers, including the equivalent of school detention that enables people to atone for their minor weaknesses, indiscretions and other wrongdoings', various 'pleasing places for the non-committed and atheists', and 'hell or hells for the really bad people.'
Heaven for a certain group of 'Save everybody else-ers' will involve going round the several hells trying to reform the people there. 86.191.20.233 (talk) 11:38, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

Infowars song contest[edit]

Can we please make a song on behalf of RationalWiki?CheeseburgerFace (talk) 23:45, 12 August 2017 (UTC)

Too late the deadline has passed. :(—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 23:48, 12 August 2017 (UTC)

Fighting the crank ideas...[edit]

This video explains that adding study after study to the mountain of research that already debunks the conspiracy of MMR vaccination causing autism might actually not help to convince parents who are afraid of the vaccination. On the contrary: In one study four interventions were attempted on parents who opposed vaccination:

  1. Factual information about the non-existing link between vaccination and autism
  2. Factual information about the risks of measles, mumps and rubella
  3. Pictures of children suffering from these diseases
  4. A heart-wrenching story of a child almost dying of measles.

Result: No increase in the parents' intend to vaccinate their children. And worse: There are even indications that the more you expose the cranks with information the less people are willing to vaccinate. It just doesn't work. Apparently the cranks are too deeply trapped in their beliefs to change their minds.

So these are the conclusions I draw from this:

  1. We need to stop making more studies about MRR and autism. It's pointless.
  2. Maybe we need to tell parents (and soon-be parents) of this crap before they hear about it the first time, google it, and then click on the wrong fucking links.
  3. And I guess this can be generalized to all kinds of woo. People who live in their bubble since years can probably not be "rescued", be it the truthers, the climate change deniers or whatnot.
  4. I guess all we can do is to improve the education of our children and raise them to be good skeptics. But we will still not reach the kids of those homeschooling cranks.
  5. We need to explain to people that biases exist in everyone of us and that this is very normal. But if you know that your brain is biasing you all the time then you can start to become skeptic about what you think. I found this video really informative: The Science of Anti-Vaccination It explains how many different biases trap the anti-vaccination people in their views.

Thoughts? --Mad physicist (talk) 00:13, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

The issue: people are legally allowed to have and share dumb opinions. While controlling media and speech may sound like a good idea on paper, it won't be in reality. False intuitive beliefs are something humans are very good at, and it will take genetic engineering to fix this issue, which has issues of its own.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 00:23, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Well, having education that encourages intuitive thinking may be the best shot, actually.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 00:24, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Not just intuitive but skeptical thinking. And the foundations of logic and philosophy. So that they understand their intuition can be anything between totally right and entirely wrong. —Mad physicist (talk) 01:04, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Er, that's what I meant to type.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 23:02, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
The biggest problem is that people stop using reason when someone challenges something they care about. However there is some evidence that talking in depth about the subject can help combat prejudices which would help against discriminatory crank ideas and also people who have personal experiences with what they're talking about also helps with correcting wooish ideas. Vorarchivist (talk) 19:45, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Interesting article. So when you are talking to a person face-to-face there is a chance to alter their views. But as the article said, you cannot push, you should not be judgmental. Instead, the successful strategy apparently is to ask the people where and when they were discriminated once. And I guess many people have something to say, and be it just a phase of bullying at high school. And then they maybe begin to relate their hard time in the past with what discriminated transgender people might feel. –Mad physicist (talk) 21:54, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
I read about another great, almost miraculous, example for this approach: Daryl Davis is a black man in his 50s with a weird hobby which he pursues since years. He talks to members of the KKK. His opening words are something like "How can you hate me if you don't even know me?". Over the years he has befriended many people in the KKK and some of them left the KKK and left behind their racist prejudices. [Article in the LA times] [documentary film] [German-language article] –Mad physicist (talk) 21:56, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
The report of a woman who grew up in the Westboro Baptist Church: she talked to many people on twitter in order to convince them of her views but over the time she started to question her views and in the end it was her who abandoned her hate. [youtube] So there really is a way. You need patience, talk to the people, listen to them, and don't judge them. Miracles can happen, apparently. –Mad physicist (talk) 22:05, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

When I was looking at the Falun Gong article[edit]

I started to wonder why China uncensored doesn't have a article here? — Unsigned, by: Knightofjustice123 / talk / contribs 12:16, 14 August 2017

I'm also fairly new so I don't know who in this community knows something about China. But I'd say if you know something about "China uncensored", go ahead and draft an article! :-) Mad physicist (talk) 15:13, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

Is Zionism evil?[edit]

Hello there. I am new here, but I saw your article on Zionism and I just wanted to ask, whether you consider Zionism evil? Evil Zionist (talk) 19:08, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

I personally consider Zionism to be ethnic nationalism and therefore reprehensible, but I'm very aware my opinion isn't dominant on this site.'Legionwhat do you want from me 20:09, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
In short, no. Having already suffered through our own Israeli-Palestinian disputes on this wiki, I don't think most of us want to see it again. If you make factual corrections or possibly additions to our existing web pages on Israel and Palestine, that's probably fine, but we're not happy with polemics on these pages, as ultimately it's a big energy drain for us. Bongolian (talk) 21:08, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Zionism is "nationalism" only insofar as the belief that "nation-state x should exist" is "nationalism". That is, after all, the definition of modern Zionism most people would agree on - the belief that a Jewish state should exist. I.e. the belief that Israel should exist. Evil Zionist (talk) 21:31, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
Asserting that the Jews have the "right" to own Israel and environs is indeed nationalist- not fundamentally different from saying that America should be a Christian nation. It's ethnic nationalism, and any state that embraces ethnic nationalism as its foundation is hard for me to support. My sympathy for the Jewish diaspora across time does not override displacing people from their ancestral homeland. Pluralism and multicultralism leads to progress and peace, irredentism and ethnic nationalism lead only to conflict and war, which is more important than whether I think it is "evil" or "good" in an abstract sense. Hentropy (talk) 22:38, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
I'll be honest, I never heard of Zionism until some user started trolling on Zionism article talkpages.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 23:00, 13 August 2017 (UTC)


I have to say I'm not entirely sure what is meant by zionism. It appears to mean different things to different people. I used to believe that it just meant the creation of Jewish state and its defence. then i became aware that some folk see it as a kind of israeli imperialism, for want of a better word with its expansion via settlements and via war (in the not too distant past). i realise the second part of that could be considered as the being one and the same as the first part, but if you were to think that the creation and defence part does not reqiure any additional land, is it not possible to be a zionist and be for a two state solution? i am also now aware of folk who believe zionism is some kind of international jewish conspiracy, but those folk are generally pricks. AMassiveGay (talk) 22:32, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

We tend to talk about Zionism disconnected from time, but Zionism was originally cooked in late-19th/early-20th century politics, when it became popular for western powers (France and Britain mostly) to "solve" problems in places like the Balkans by splitting everyone up by ethnicity. They did this for geopolitical, not ideological reasons, so they could propose "reasonable" compromises to restrict the power of eastern powers such as Russia and Austria-Hungary. You could say these solutions staved off the smaller wars that permeated 19th century Europe, but set the stage for the huge ones in the 20th century. Zionism was quite a run-of-the-mill political solution to Jewish disapora in Europe, the issue is that just like Serbian nationalism or Arab nationalism, it is not an ideology which has produced results, and if they wish to improve they might have to evolve the same way many European countries have evolved since that age. Hentropy (talk) 22:57, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
"is it not possible to be a zionist and be for a two state solution?"
Yes, just as it's possible to be Zionist and be for Jordan's existence. The various Zionist orgs never really agreed on just about anything beyond "There should be a safe have for Jews"; some of them didn't even agree on returning to Israel let alone claiming all of it. Some of the groups even wanted to keep all the local Arabs on the land, and didn't even care if they were a majority so long as it was always open to fleeing Jews, and even a (very) few notable Arabs supported that in the sense that their cousins could help them industrialize without being placed under the British yoke. But a bit of ethnic conflict and a few wars kind of made any peaceful solution more or less impossible. CorruptUser (talk) 23:00, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

@HentropyGoodpost.gif'Legionwhat do you want from me 00:45, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

We could actually revisit the I-P articles to improve their lackluster quality, since Mona, Avenger, Typhoon, and the other warriors seem to have left us. Lord Aeonian (talk) 04:38, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

While I agree with the gist of Hentropy's post regarding Zionism itself, I don't think the picture of ethno-nationalism as a Western/European great power expediency for redrawing Balkan borders. Those effects stemmed from the Balkan states themselves and contained an inner contradiction between a wish for a homogeneous ethno-nationalist state and territorial expansion, which ineluctably created more and more and/or larger and larger ethnic minorities within the state. Also, one important influence in Theodor Herzl becoming a "Jewish ethno-nationalist" (i.e. a Zionist) was the infamous Dreyfus trial, not Balkan affairs. Indeed, local state and ethno-nationalist aspirations on the Balkans were more likely to complicate and frustrate great power politics in the area than to serve as an aim for them. ScepticWombat (talk) 06:57, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
I don't have an opinion on 'Zionism' per se. I understand why it seemed important to carve out a Jewish ethno-state in the aftermath of the Third Reich. I would have carved it out of formerly German territory like the world also did for Poland, rather than making it in Palestine; the Jews' claim to the area was quite stale. But it didn't happen that way, and Israel is probably still the only place in the region where it's possible to assemble a symphony orchestra. What I'm tired of are the endless wars of Israel, and their influence on my own country's politics. Thanks to that influence a quarter of the world hates us, and I don't see any benefits to us that even partly balance against that cost. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 14:47, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

Part of what makes this complicated is the conflation of religion and nationality. Even hardcore French Nationalists wouldn't define the "French Nation" in religious terms. And indeed many (though by no means all) Zionists argue that you can be Atheist and Jewish at the same time. But some on the fringes and many outside observers seem to think that the "Jewish" in "Jewish state" is meant in the religious sense. Herzl at the very least did not and I doubt we should support a state that sees itself as a religiously Jewish state to the exclusion of all other religions. The current Jewish state however (if you exclude the West Bank for a second) has relatively equal rights for non-Jews as well and is not all that much less secular than most Western states. Evil Zionist (talk) 15:54, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

You are right about religion and nationality- but in essence it has little to do with religion. Ethnicity is ultimately about identity, and if you're saying that this plot of land belongs principally to people of a certain identity by rights- it's an ethno-state, no different from any other state that has existed under the foundation that it belongs to German Christians, Arab Muslims, Burmese Buddhist, etc. I suppose my point is these sorts of countries simply do not produce desirable outcomes, and the best thing for the Jewish people attempting to live in that region is to abandon the flawed, pre-World War philosophies that led to World War in the first place, and embrace post-war ideas that countries should not be built on ethnic identities, but on principles of liberty and pluralism. There are plenty on Israel's left which agree with this notion, but as much as some Israeli nationalists like to claim that they are not necessarily religious, the only reason they are in power is because of the racist and sexist ultra-orthodox communities propping them up. Hentropy (talk) 17:11, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Which state is not based on an ethnic identity of some sort or has historically been based on that? Evil Zionist (talk) 17:20, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
To take two extremes - the Vatican City State and the USSR.
EZ - rephrase your statement slightly as it is ambiguous. 82.44.143.26 (talk) 17:28, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
"Historically based" is not the same as currently based. Politics and borders of countries change all the time across history. That's largely my point- at one time ethno-nationalism was the norm, and Zionism was not out of the line compared to most European political stances, but then we had two world wars that killed over a hundred million people. Now, we denounce countries that try to base their current-day identity purely around an ethnicity. The Israeli right has clung to this old and poisonous ideology of ethnic nationalism not as a practical solution to the problem (we're still in a never-ending conflict in Israel/Palestine that shows no sign of resolution), but because many of them truly feel like Israel is *theirs* and every non-Jew who is there by their permission. Being tolerant of white western Christians who spend money in your country is not the same as being open, liberal, and secular. Hentropy (talk) 19:04, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
I'd say that ethno-nationalism is still a very widespread idea/ideology, but what has declined is the more extreme racialist/chauvinist version (what I think you're getting at with the phrase about a country trying "base their current-day identity purely around an ethnicity").
What is particular about Israeli case is the almost total equation of ethnicity with religion. While religion has often played a central role in defining various ethno-nationalist projects, the perceived total overlap between ethnicity and religion is particularly strong in the Jewish/Israeli case. By contrast, most other religions have "multiple homelands/tribes" or create multi-religious ethnic-nationalist visions. For instance, while Prussian Protestantism was clearly in the driver's seat during "The German Revolution" and Catholics were viewed by this group with suspicion, it was never denied that you could be a German nationalist and a Catholic at the same time. Or you can look at the strong nationalist flows in the Nordic countries which all shared practically interchangeable Lutheran state churches. The closest, of imperfect parallel I can come up with on the spot is probably Japan and Shintoism, but then Japan also has very strong Buddhist traditions in its ethno-nationalism, making for a more complex, religious landscape.
The complicating factor in the case of Israel and Zionism is the dual label of "Jewish" denoting both ethnicity and religion which is assumed to be almost inseparable (a notion which, taken to its racialist extreme, disregards whether a "Jew" comes from a family which has long since converted to some other faith or has become atheist). The irony is that this anti Semitic bogeyman seems to have been basically embraced by that extreme chauvinist "religio-nationalist" right wing in today's Israel that you mention, Hentropy.
It is also quite historically ironic that Israel thus shares with Germany both a basically {wpl|jus sanguinis}} conception of citizenship and a law/right of return based on this conception. What Germany lacks is the unambiguous role of religion as a potentially uniting force in its ethno-nationalism. Another irony is that I seem to recall hearing/reading that Zionism was initially blasted by conservative, religious Jewish denominations as being a blasphemous attempt at usurping Yahweh's powers in defiance of His judgement (i.e. the recreation of a Jewish state was supposed to be Yahweh's prerogative, not man's). ScepticWombat (talk) 20:15, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
PS: "Three thousand years of beautiful tradition, from Moses to Sandy Koufax — YOU'RE GODDAMN RIGHT I'M LIVING IN THE FUCKING PAST! I've... — Jesus. What the hell happened?" ScepticWombat (talk) 20:24, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Borders on the Balkans were mostly drawn on a religious base. A Catholic is almost always a Croat, a Muslim is a Bosniak and an Orthodox person is a Serb. So no, Israel is not the only country where religion and ethnicity are intertwined. Pakistan is another similar case. And current Israel has at the very least a large minority - probably a majority - that would like to get rid of the West Bank (or most of it) but fear the potential of a Hamas takeover just as happened in Gaza. After all, as long as Israel controls the West Bank, they can keep it from attacking Israel in a really dangerous way. Evil Zionist (talk) 13:55, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
You should probably read this article here if you're worried about Hamas, also yeah indiscriminate bombing of the West Bank and Gaza, allowing colonialists to steal land that doesn't belong to them, enforcing Jim Crow style laws in occupied territories "it's all for security".'Legionwhat do you want from me 08:08, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Israel created Hamas? Oh come the fuck on. It's not like there weren't a bunch of radical Islamists hell bent on killing Jews before Hamas came into being. And look, Israel did withdraw from Gaza. But what did it get them? If you were Israeli, would you advise withdrawing from the West Bank and let the chips fall where they may? Evil Zionist (talk) 18:53, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
If I were Israeli, I'd advise an end to the brutal occupation of both the Gaza strip as well as the west bank, I'd advise an erasure of the material conditions that allow radical groups like Hamas and Hezbollah to exist, and most of all, I'd advise a secular government in which Palestinians have a true say in dictating the way they live their own lives.'Legionwhat do you want from me 22:30, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Israel has left the Gaza Strip. Did not do them much good. And I don't think hatred and the desire to murder people is always rational. The Nazis had no rational reasons to kill the Jews after all. Evil Zionist (talk) 23:21, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Some Nazis did. It's just that the rational reasons also happen to be inherently and unquestionably evil. For instance, many Nazis wished for great wealth. Many Jews in Germany had great wealth in one form or another. Thus, a rational Nazi would figure that exterminating Jews would yield them profit more easily than actually doing the hard work necessary to acquiring wealth without murder. Nazis tended to either be Anti-Semitic lunatics or psychopathic thieves. Or both. RoninMacbeth (talk) 00:30, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

@Evil ZionistI don't think its a stretch to say that the material conditions in the Gaza strip, caused by Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip, has led to increased radicalization among the people living there, rational or not.'Legionwhat do you want from me 03:03, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

@EZ: The equation between ethnicity and religion in the Balkans was basically how early nationalists tended to define the various Balkan ethnic groups (who had an identity that was, at the time religious, rather than ethnic), instead of the mainly linguistic dividing lines drawn in some of the other parts of Europe. This also appeared in the "population exchanges" between Greece and Turkey, where Greek speaking Muslims were repatriated to Turkey and Turkish speaking Orthodox Christians to Greece.
However, the difference is that in contrast to Israel/Judaism is that while religion was important to these "national(istic) projects", there were plenty of other Orthodox/Muslim/Catholic states. By contrast, the designation "Jew" tends to be understood as a fairly unambiguous statement of both ethnicity and religious affiliation. ScepticWombat (talk) 05:45, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
If you were the government of Gaza and your first priority were an end to the blockade, how would you try to achieve that? Evil Zionist (talk) 22:06, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

I repeat my question. If you were in charge of Gaza and wished the blockade to end, how would your policy to achieve that look like? What would you do? Evil Zionist (talk) 17:12, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Probably[edit]

I mean, you cannot necessarily lay the blame on one ideology out of dozens that exist with the government of Israel for the gradual creation of a security state for the protection one of half of the population and the systemic isolation, economic degradation, and excessive, disproportionate military action against the other half. But in a reductionist view, it's easy to say it's the one most responsible. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:49, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

@Ikanreed, I think you're conflating the ideology (which predated the creation of the modern Israeli state by decades) with the enactment in the state of Israel. In theory, Zionism could have been enacted differently. Bongolian (talk) 20:47, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
I feel like the preface I gave to my post adequately indicated that it was not a simple cause and effect. I respect your request for nuance, but I also feel I gave a reasonable amount, even specifically acknowledging one must take a reductionist view to blame zionism alone. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:14, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Apparently a bunch of white nationalist apologist are thinking that someone completely innocent perpetrated the attack[edit]

Your thoughts on these sad people? Knightofjustice123 (talk) 21:40, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

Heres the article I was mentioning :http://freedomdaily.com/truth-terrorist-drove-charlottesville-riot-crowd-revealed-who-was-supposed-to-die/ Note to people: Do not send death threats to the author of this article.— Unsigned, by: Knightofjustice123 / talk / contribs
What the fuck are you talking about?—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 21:59, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Fixed it Knightofjustice123 (talk) 22:18, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
"It appears the researchers at /pol/ were wrong" We got some grade A journalism right here. Also, RW users are better than that.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 22:22, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Yup,but a lot of people are dumb enough to actually believe this. Also If "RW users are better than that." is for me I'm sorry I'm just floored It's pisses me off that people fall into A: That Venus flytrap B: Are trying to use this to deflect this off the far right (rather knowingly or not). Knightofjustice123 (talk)
If you're reading freedomdaily.com you pretty much know it's extreme shit. Leuders (talk) 03:27, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Wisdom of predictive text[edit]

'D' gives 'Didit fallacy', 'Don't Feed the Troll', 'Donald Trump' and 'do' includes 'Dog whistle politics' among the selection; 'Co' gives Conservapedia, Conspiracy Theory, Communism...

a game to be recommended with wikis and the wider system of tubes. Anna Livia (talk) 17:08, 14 August 2017 (UTC)

that's a silly game. I tried it with Google and all I get is highly dubious porn categories. I cannot think why. AMassiveGay (talk) 17:48, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Is it a game at all? :p–Mad physicist (talk) 21:49, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Works better with Wikis : Wikipedia has 'Daylight saving time, Darth Vader' for 'D' and 'Don, Donald Trump, Don Quixote.'
Anyway - look at the list of terms that come up and be amused (and occasionally intrigued or be given ideas of what to pursue). Anna Livia (talk) 22:09, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
If you're bored and want to play a game on your computer, I recommend spider solitaire. it's better than trying to get a laugh out of predictive text on wikis. Spud (talk) 05:43, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
'Observing while web/wiki-searching' and as a form of doodling then?
Anyway - the results are sometimes apt or at least amusing. Anna Livia (talk) 09:33, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Legal threats on talk of John Fuerst[edit]

Move to the Chicken coop Rebekka (talk) 21:10, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Have you gotten wind of the whole brouhaha about the ethnic composition of Roman Britain?[edit]

Should we have an article on that? Or is there really nothing more to say than "we don't know, but probably quite diverse"? Evil Zionist (talk) 15:40, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

probs best in nassim Nicholas taleb's article AMassiveGay (talk) 16:13, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
Probably most people 'don't really care it was a long time ago and the Roman Empire tended to move soldiers away from where their relatives were so they would remain loyal to Caesar, and what about the Anglo-Saxon-Jutes-Vikings-Normans and Cheddar Gorge Man and a few others adding to the mix... and my parents were immigrants so it is irrelevant anyway.' 82.44.143.26 (talk) 17:58, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
you might want to view this. its twitter spat and I know how you folk love yourselves some twitter spats. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:31, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
We have an article on that Taleb guy? Evil Zionist (talk) 18:53, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
we do. i know nowt about him i just recognised his name when i was about mary beard in the guardian. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:15, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
"Race" as we know it was much less salient to the ancients. The cultural center of the Roman empire remained in the eastern Mediterranean. In that geography, people generally would have been aware that people tended to become darker the further south you'd go, but there was no real cutoff point or clear line of demarcation. It's only the experience of Western Europeans, cut off culturally from the original eastern center, that made 'race' the big deal it now is. And that's because they had to sail past 800 miles of sparsely inhabited desert full of hostile Muslims, and when they got past that they found a world of very dark people. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 19:57, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

So after a half-assed condemnation of the neonazi murderers[edit]

Donald trump just gave a goddamn press conference where he equated general Lee to George Washington, blamed the "alt-left" for there being violence at a neo-nazi rally, and blamed counterprotestors for provoking the terrorist fuck who killed them. What the fuck is going on? (side note: no alt-right concern trolling in this thread, thanks) ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:38, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

on the plus side, if this isn't too crass, you've now got a moral justification for Nazi punching. AMassiveGay (talk) 21:02, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Punch a Nazi[edit]

Personally I'm not supportive of using violence to get my point across. But all over social media people seem to be ok with using violence when met with violence, and saying that in the past it has been the way to peace. But we tried violence, and they are still here, so what makes them think more of it is going to help? Is this a case of becoming a monster to defeat a monster?Machina (talk) 21:14, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Here is a tip on punching Nazis. If when you punch a person you assume is a Nazi, that person doesn't draw a weapon and attempt to kill you, then you probably were mistaken and you have attacked some asshole pretending to be a Nazi. I don't advise punching Nazis if you are not carrying a gun and are prepared to use it. Ariel31459 (talk) 21:40, 15 August 2017 (UTC).
why would not shooting you mean they arent a Nazi? And why would punching someone mean I must be packing? AMassiveGay (talk) 21:52, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
Excuse me, I just assumed everyone knew what the real Nazis were like: they killed their enemies whenever they could. You must be thinking of the assholes pretending to be Nazis.Ariel31459 (talk) 22:23, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
@'maybe the uni bomber had the right idea'machina- what if Nazi punching brought us back to nature?AMassiveGay (talk) 21:54, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
jus5 because they are not goose stepping around a concentration camp doesn't make em any less nazi. I would agree though that they are arsehole AMassiveGay (talk) 22:36, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
Well if they are, then they just might kill you. Good luck.Ariel31459 (talk) 22:38, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

Punching Nazis is a humanitarian effort, and the guy that punched Richard Spencer deserves a Nobel Prize much more than Obama does.'Legionwhat do you want from me 07:59, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

It is also an ineffective effort. Nazis are not just bullies. Bullies run away when their noses are bloodied. Real Nazis like to fight with knives and guns and blunt objects. Real Nazis try to kill you. Don't be stupid, that's all.Ariel31459 (talk) 12:59, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
When Nazis brandish weapons and attempt to kill people then I think the solution is pretty god damn clear (yes I am encouraging people to kill Nazis)'Legionwhat do you want from me 13:39, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
@ariel - im not sure that you are know what nazis are. Sure, they are not the 1940s nazi party type, they are of the neo nazi type. i'm sure you could quibble about the exact politics of such arseholes, but ulitimately right wing white supremicist are nazi enough to justify the moniker. as for the 'real nazis like to fight with knives and guns', this is just facile. some do, some lift weights, have swastikas on their face go around tooled up and would end me in a heart beat. others, read 'most', look like over weight hipsters (much like everyone else in the west) who i could snap like a twig. as for the bullies are cowards bullshit, thats just... bullshit parents tell their children. usually before they get beaten up after facing up to their cowardly bullies. Buts lets be clear about this. im not advacating assaulting random racists in the street (one of our more vocal nazi punching advocates called me a prick for this), though such action would undoubtedly be satisfying and pretty effective at making a majority of folk think twice about voicing such bullshit. however, if you are met with violence, then you must meet it in kind less it roll over you. seig heiling in the street is an act of violence. Charlottesville was an act of violence. you can wring your hands all you like, but if a racist wants to debate you, debate them. if they are pushing you, you knock them down. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:41, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

@AMassiveGay It is clear to me that you don't understand my point. Real Nazis are dangerous. They can only be dealt with through strength. I just don't want some idiot to think that he can punch a real Nazi and expect to live without putting up a serious fight. If you don't mind dying, good for you. I can tell you that I would be armed if I expected to meet Nazis. I would not hesitate to pull the trigger either. I'm not sure that you understand what Nazis are.Ariel31459 (talk) 17:18, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

i understand your point exactly, and as i said earlier, its a facile one. the suggestion that 'real' nazis are all some kind of superhuman killing machines, is idiotic. it flatters them. the idea that someone who holds the exact same views as the latter but has the fighting capacity of a wet sponge is somehow not a real nazi is an idiotic idea. on top of such inane ideas, they are dangerous ideas. you focus on the big scary thugs as the real threat when the other nondescript nazi types go about their business away from your blinkered gaze and spread their poison breeding more like themselves and more like their thuggish pals. and lo, they sneaked into the whitehouse. you think steve bannon isnt a right wing extremist because he hasnt shanked anyone? what about that richard spencer character? has he done much killing after getting battered on tv? i reiterate, i grasped your 'point' and i will reiterate mine - you dont seem to grasp what nazis actually are. as for warnings on punching nazis, they are misplaced. most people with the will for such actions should be able to tell who they can and cannot best. They'll pick their fights. such people are just as thuggish as those that you flatter as nazi ubermensch. the warning should be that such actions will likely result in them getting nicked. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:50, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
You think I am flattering Nazis? Well aren't you special! Death is special too. Be careful. Don't advise people to do things that will get themselves killed. Facile? Death is not facile son.Ariel31459 (talk) 19:43, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

I beat the shit out of a neo-nazi who verballed my daughter once. I think a discussion of the incident might still be buried in the archives of RW (although it was a long time ago, maybe 8 years or so). I was subsequently convicted of Assault Causing Actual Bodily Harm under Section 47 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861. I pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment suspended for 2 years, ordered to pay the neo-nazi £1500 compensation, and awarded (iirc) 200 ( might have been 150, I don't remember) hours Community Service (which I did working for an animal charity). It was worth it. I hardly ever think about it ... but that guy still has to look at the scar running from his eye to his mouth every morning when he brushes his teeth. Fox (talk) 23:42, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Alt-Left? I am just seeing a trump press conference on ABC World News Tonight[edit]

What the fuck is trump talking about? --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 22:36, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

This? The guy talks out of his convefe.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 22:49, 15 August 2017 (UTC)
"Alt-left" is a smear made up by both liberals and the alt-right to smear social democrats, democratic socialists, and other more left wing factions of the democratic party as being far left commies associated with AntiFa.'Legionwhat do you want from me 08:01, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

It was only a matter of time before the word "alt-left" was put into popular usage. Even a moron could do it, but it was probably a Bannon-wing contribution. It is a ying-yang thing. A linguistic compensation: a catch-all for left-wing moonbats, BLM fringe members, Nazi-punchers and the like. Traditional lefties in America do not riot.Ariel31459 (talk) 13:08, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Sorry, what?'Legionwhat do you want from me 13:44, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
1999 may be a long time ago, for you.Ariel31459 (talk) 18:03, 16 August 2017 (UTC).
thats positively new school. these are proper traditional lefties. UK rather than US mind. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:09, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Real traditional lefties in the us probably didnt riot . they did however get deported and/or blacklisted. Maybe they should've rioted. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:12, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
You are thinking of Communists. The traditional left was much bigger than Communist sympathizers.Ariel31459 (talk) 17:19, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haymarket_affair boy those were the days... Evil Zionist (talk) 18:55, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
you really think all or even most of those deported in the 20s and 30s or those blacklisted in the 50s where communist sympathisers?you think striking miners murdered by professional strike breakers and the national guard where all communist sympathisers? hoover's FBI at one time saw everyone as 'Communist sympathisers' and treated them as such. look their treatment of MLK for example. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:03, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
No. I don't. You are great at missing the point. Where did you get this? I wrote that most leftists were not communist sympathizers. There were millions of leftists, especially in the 1960s. The whole Civil Rights Movement was leftists. Hoover tried to slow it by accusing people of being Commie sympathizers. I remember it. That dog didn't hunt.Ariel31459 (talk) 19:47, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
except, in response to to my suggestion that the left has been persecuted to varying degree throughout much of the twentieth century, your reply was 'your thinking of communists'. my reply to that was to highlight more specific examples where 'they were communists' is at the very best is blatant exaggeration, if not out right bullshit. you then reply 'oh noes, i didnt say that' oblivious to the implications of your own statement, then reiterating the EXACT point i was making ie. that it wasnt merely communists shat on by the us state. further more, the original point to your initial statement in this thread shows your grasp of what constitutes the 'traditional' left, like your grasps of nazis, is too narrow, insufficiently broad, it might as well be fantasy. AMassiveGay (talk) 20:24, 16 August 2017 (UTC) 'too narrow, insufficiently broad' and at same time, vague and indistinct - quite a feat.i salute you AMassiveGay (talk) 20:44, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Really, im starting to see the merits of that fallacy bingo people here like play and just spouted 'no true scotsman'. AMassiveGay (talk) 20:29, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
I thought "leftist" only referred to Marxists, and "liberals" refers to centrist style politics that is predominent in most Western countries? Then again, maybe I read too much r/ShitLiberalsSay and r/Communism. But it's just so tempting to let myself think those people are in control of the modern left( ? Non-right, I guess?) so one can issue a casus belli on all of them. Lord Aeonian (talk) 00:32, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
It really depends on where you are. While it might be that way in Europe in The US its common for people who fall to the right of social democrat to be called leftist.Vorarchivist (talk) 04:24, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
even centrists are referred in terms of centre left and centre right. in the uk at least, liberal seems to me a pretty fuzzy term AMassiveGay (talk) 05:35, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

Here in Texas, you're either a god fearing, gay bashing, Ted Cruz level Republican or a filthy homo commie. They call those 'liberals'. when I tell people I'm more centrist, I get called a libtard or, my personal favorite, my morals are bad and I wasn't raised right(my own dad tells me this!) No joke, til I was about twelve or so, I thought 'liberal' was a serious insult. Trump has made it much worse. Now I have family members defending Nazis because "well, they're just showing their white pride!" Goddammit. Asaac Isimov (talk) 15:56, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

RationalWiki, we have a problem[edit]

I've always had the idea that there could be an article of the week, but an article to cleanup and improve for that week. RationalWiki has a lot of articles and I think focusing on some non-brainstared articles can greatly increase the amount of brainstarred articles we have. We have a tendency to have articles with a stub template that haven't been edited for a year:

Heck, just look at how many stub articles we have.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 23:12, 15 August 2017 (UTC)

I'd love that to be real, especially since I work to cite pages and just see the amount needing citation rise so anything that would encourage working on current pages would be great. Vorarchivist (talk) 19:20, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
I think I got the idea of a Bad Article of the Day from some other wiki, Wikipedia? It seems complex to implement though. We might need the FeaturedFeeds extension.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 20:33, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Wikipedia has a list of articles to cleanup.CheeseburgerFace (talk) 21:32, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Suggestion[edit]

Can 'the nuisance IPs' (as distinct from 'attempted wit' and 'enlighten my ignorance') have a 'You have new messages' generated for them that say 'Get a life (and a #proper# 'sense of humour' implant)'? Or a Trump-tweet style comment generator ('You are very sad') 82.44.143.26 (talk) 17:01, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

How would you suggest we distinguish between "nuisance IPs" and GF contributor IPs automatically? RoninMacbeth (talk) 19:09, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
Daft names probably (looking at some of them). 86.191.120.199 (talk) 20:10, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
What is 'GF' in this case?
Some of 'the more creative-lurid fanfic writers' could probably come up with some interesting suggestions. 86.191.120.199 (talk) 21:48, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Noticed something on YouTube[edit]

If you have a thick skin for religious crap, all videos posted by Pensacola Christian College have the comment section disabled. Maybe they want to suppress free speech? --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 20:37, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Disabling comments does not violate laws of free speech so long as it's not a government entity — Pensacola Christian College is an independent school so it doesn't apply.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 20:41, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
I know, I am stating that they hate free speech. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 00:15, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
Or maybe they just hate trolling, just like every other website, including this one. Funny I have to monkey with the URL to edit here and you're complaining about censorship...— Unsigned, by: 172.58.12.88 / talk / contribs
I was just speculating, you might be right, you might be wrong. I was just tossing an idea out there. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 15:30, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
This is bad reasoning. If you've got even the slightest experience with youtube comments, you've got zero reason to want the "meaningful free debate" they'd bring to a good video, much less a shitty one. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:00, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
I was curious, that somehow wrong? Sorry to be curious. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 20:17, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
They lost a bit of their soul for doing that. Ailurus (talk) 16:14, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

Trump clarifies: being against Nazis IS ALSO a form of Nazism[edit]

About two hours old news. Yyyyeah, good luck with that... And that's considering this happened just two days ago. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 21:32, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Good heavens! How did this guy pass history class again? @Reverend Black Percy You may want to post that on the WIGO page. Nerd271 (talk) 22:36, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
since far right fuckwits are literally trumps only support right now, its going be difficult for him to throw em under the bus AMassiveGay (talk) 22:52, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
All those dreadful things he said and done are finally catching up with him, no? Nerd271 (talk) 23:07, 16 August 2017 (UTC)

Is trump smoking pot? Or doing Bath Salts? --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 02:56, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Blackfish: Propaganda Or Not?[edit]

Has anyone here heard of the movie "Blackfish"? I looked on the internet and saw a lot of articles on how it was propaganda, but also a few on how it was right. I say we should get out the goats and take a look. The Rational Gamer, WonderKirby577Let's chat! 02:57, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

I've seen it myself, and it's definitely slanted, but it's admittedly well-made agitprop that doesn't dip into obvious, easily-discredited bullshit. It largely sticks to the facts, that orcas are intelligent apex predators that probably shouldn't be kept in captivity, and that working with them is a dangerous profession that definitely shouldn't be done by poorly-trained, overworked amusement park employees. (SeaWorld, despite being the film's main focus, actually comes off better than some of the other parks profiled in the film.) I wrote a review of this film for my movie-review blog, and the only real problem I had with it was that the Mondo Cane/When Animals Attack shockumentary approach it sometimes took, being all too eager to show killer whales beating the snot out of people, often clashed with the sober nature documentary feel of other parts of the film. It got the point across, and it did admittedly provide some cheap thrills, but I would've just stuck with the videos of orcas hunting in the wild (and maybe one video of an attack on a human) in order to show that they were powerful and dangerous. KevinR1990 (talk) 19:57, 18 August 2017 (UTC)
@KevinR1990Goodpost.gif The Rational Gamer, WonderKirby577Let's chat! 22:37, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Hilarious jury transcript from the Martin Shkreli trial[edit]

Source is included as well. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 10:05, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

Ouch! I wonder if something similar will happen when Donald Trump and his cronies go on trial. Nerd271 (talk) 14:35, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
Donald Trump will not go on trial. He will not be impeached. If he happens to resign, he will be fully pardoned before a hint of an inquest can start. The people who voted for him will never acknowledge responsibility for what they've done. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:27, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
im not entirely convinced trump has actually done anything, at least with respect to collusion with russia. I was thinking (not one of stronger skills) about this and I cant see why russia would even have to. They are perfectly capable to influence, hack, mess with the electoral process without his help and would have done so whether trump was or wasn't on board. They did not want hilary in the whitehouse is what they wanted and what they got. The fact trump is an incompetent clown and putin knows how play him like a fiddle is just a happy coincidence for them. i wouldnt put money on him not being as guilty as sin but theres been no smoking guns so far, and what we do know can be explained way with incompetence, political naivety, and the pig headed arrogance of someone whose not used to being told 'no', with the added extra of american electioneering done legally still seems pretty murky to me. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:16, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
that all said, we are talking about a country where an unsecured email server is considered treason, so who know AMassiveGay (talk) 18:44, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
Oh, Trump has done something. He stopped supplying the Islamist rebel groups Tahrir al-Sham and Jaysh al-Islam with weapons and funding, and instead started supporting socialist Kurdish groups (yes, you heard that right antifa). Despite close relations with the Saudis, he has conspicuously not given in to Saudi requests for military support in their invasion of Yemen. The only bad thing he's done was the travel ban on Shia countries, but that was a pro-Sunni deal handed down from Obama which Trump naively followed through with. Lord Aeonian (talk) 19:11, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
i have no doubt he has done stuff, i am merely referring to getting in bed with the russians to rig the election AMassiveGay (talk) 21:06, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
"And he disrespected the Wu-Tang Clan". LMAO. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 18:58, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
@Ikanreed Going out like Nixon is a good option. We do not need any more drama. Nerd271 (talk) 23:04, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
@AMassiveGay Possible collusion with a foreign power (Russia) to interfere with the 2016 US Presidential Election is not the only thing he is under investigation for. Robert Mueller is also looking into his finances for any conflicts of interests. Nerd271 (talk) 23:04, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
again, i am only referring to russian collusion - something that many folk appear to believe is a certainty AMassiveGay (talk) 12:30, 18 August 2017 (UTC)
So... Hypothetical. What if someone commits a crime so heinous that literally no one, or at least 12 Americans, can be found to be on a jury? Do we just have a summary execution? CorruptUser (talk) 12:47, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

Summat odd just happened[edit]

About to suggest this page be archived and the following came up

'Error 503 Backend fetch failed

Backend fetch failed

Guru Meditation:

XID: 361366

Varnish cache server'

The XID number changed when I tried to 'go back one step and go forward again.'

Was this just 'one of those glitches' (or was it 'wrong sort of varnish'?) 86.191.110.154 (talk) 21:34, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

Climate Change deniers[edit]

Many believe climate change is a myth but plenty of them believe in a book with a talking snake. Do the deniers/creationists not see a flaw in that logic? --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 00:10, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

Well, that depends on the perspective that you come from. Climate Change is a idea that has appeared from hard science, and decades of study. The Bible was written up by a few dozen people over thousands of years of war, conquest and fable. In a purely rational society, one would expect the Bible to be seen as a book of nonsense, and Climate Change to be universally accepted as fact, no questions asked. We do not live in a rational society. Sure, some may appear "rational" but the function of society, the essence of it is to NOT be rational. Society is designed to have social barriers, walls if you may. Someone who believes in the Bible 100% and looks at Climate Change can come up with mainly two conclusions- This information is false ("Fake News" as some would call it) or that the information is partly true, yes there are changes, but they are natural and will appear and disappear over time. Both of these conclusions are not rational. Why is this? Because of the main signifier in the Bible itself- God. God appears to believers as the ultimate Big Other- one who is above all flawed human constructs. As such, The word of God is valued more (in the Bible) than humans- they are nearly always portrayed as weak and morally lost. The Christian who believes God's word over human thought is considered more authentic, and thus, less sinful. Therefore, The usual Christian subject, following their own logic, must appear as a Christian object to God by following the rules of Christian Rationality- Believe in the act of helping mankind and improving the Soul, but Trust in God as the ultimate Symbolic object outside the flawed human science- it may help your body, but not your soul. Therefore, the creationist subject usually gets the best of both worlds- the benefits of science, and the negation of logic caused by the God that appears as Other. This may answer your question. Click Link Or Gulag 02:56, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

Why does the universe exist?[edit]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vtWLa5MNYcc

The above video almost made me wonder why the universe exists instead of nothing existing, and that I thought "who cares"? Does it really even matter? Seems like, to me, it's a dumb question to ask since what would you even do with the answer?

On a side note, the speaker seems to have a very shallow analysis of the topics he covers.Machina (talk) 04:47, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

Well, he surely has done SOME research on the topic. You won't be able to properly use terms like "grand unification epoch" without any prior exposure to the topic. However, there are several misunderstandings, fallacies and premature conclusions in the video.
One overarching theme of the video is the conflation of "Why does the universe exist", i.e. "What is the causal relationship that led to the universe existing" with "Why does the universe exist", i.e. "What is the purpose of the universe". Let me first adress the former.
The short answer is: We don't know. As the author of the video correctly points out, we don't know what happens before the grand unification epoch. What he does not (sufficiently) point out is that there are several hypotheses, like an eternal cyclic universe, eternal inflation, the multiverse hypothesis and so on. Anyway, that's a question our best cosmologists have been wondering about for almost a century now and it won't be settled by a 9 minute video from a guy who read the wikipedia article about the big bang once.
Let's adress the purpose thing now. The short answer is: There probably is no purpose. The universe just exists. Asking for a purpose is a pretty religious question and one that seems to be connected to the human way of thinking. That doesn't mean that it can be applied to the universe though. The fact that universe happened to come into existence due to some as of yet unknown mechanism some 14 billion years ago and happened to evolve life which can ask such questions like "What's the purpose of the universe" on some rocky planet wobbling around an average star at the edge of one of its average galaxies does not mean that there's a particularly enlightening answer to the question.
Finally, the author also makes a layman's attempt to use quantum mechanics to solve one of the major unsolved mysteries in cosmology which is bound to end in disaster. He uses Schrödinger's Cat and the fact that a measurement can have an effect on the system to conclude that the universe itself must be conscious. That's not how any of this works (unless you interpret humans as part of the universe and therefore identify us as the conscius part of the universe, but that's not what the video is about). It would be more appropriate to say that interactions affect quantum systems, no matter if there's a conscious being using the interaction for a measurement or not. The argumentation already breaks down at this point because now all you need is a universe which allows certain types of interactions (which it does) and not one which is conscious (which it very likely isn't). --Imaginative username (talk) 11:30, 18 August 2017 (UTC)
'The cosmic serpent went through the void and said 'I dream things that never were; and I say “Why not"?' The Flying Spaghetti Monster replied. 'Shall we create sentient entities this time - I fancy some alphabet pasta.' 86.191.20.133 (talk) 12:04, 18 August 2017 (UTC)
The universe exists because I needed the closet space. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 14:20, 18 August 2017 (UTC)
It is more fun than the alternatives/we have what results with 'following the instructions to construct (something completely different) every which way possible and still have a few parts left over.' (as to whether we are in 'the main construct' or 'the left-overs' I cannot tell you. 82.44.143.26 (talk) 15:12, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wv4bKg8YAD8

There was another bit he did on solipsism, but it really only scratched the base level of it. Doesn't address language or really anything else that pokes holes in it, and somehow he always manages to default to meditation in the end.Machina (talk) 20:52, 18 August 2017 (UTC)

One day we might find out why or if there is a purpose. The beauty of science right there. But if people listen to total quacks (i.e- Kent Hovind, Pat Robertson or Alex Jones), we will never find out the real answer to such a question. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 01:42, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

This question can be viewed with fascination, indifference, or disdain. I admit I am fascinated by it, but I also admit to some disdain. To begin with, the Law of the Excluded Middle is standing near in the background of this question: either you have something, or you have nothing. But, in human experience this is almost never true, e.g., "either you have money or you have no money" is almost always false in the negative case. Usually one has some money, even if only a few cents. Thus we clearly have the middle in the case of universal existence: there is both being and non-being. We have our living friends and our dead ancestors to consider. There is the breakfast before us and there were all of the preceding breakfasts of our lives, gone now. Therefore, in order for a thing to not exist, it must first have existed, at least as a concept, implying some form of prior existence, e.g. one must first conceive of a unicorn before determining that there are none in existence. It seems to me, sometimes, that this question originates by way of religious exasperation that the damn thing hasn't ended yet.Ariel31459 (talk) 14:50, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

The response is 42. Jokes apart, I think it has no purpose. The Universe just exists as, multiverse theories of any kind apart, could have instead existed, say, an empty one of a whole lot of dimensions. That kind of questions has a religious ring to them.Panzerfaust (talk) 23:46, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

Is xkcd 1357 making a moral argument, or a legal argument?[edit]

I see a few holes in their argument. For example, suppose Wikipedia says, "We have to remove this verifiable content about this notable person, because the subject of the article is threatening to hit us with a SLAPP suit, and we don't even want to take the risk that a court of law might consider the content defamatory." The editor might say, "My free speech has been infringed!" because Wikipedia is not acting based on what they want to do with their property, but rather based on what their legal department tells them they have to do with their property. Maybe in that scenario, Wikipedia thinks the subject of the article, rather than the editor, is being an asshole, but they're still going to side with the subject of the article because he's making legal threats.

The same goes for copyvios, CP, etc. The only reason Wikipedia still has the FBI seal and the Virgin Killer album cover on their site is that they decided they were willing to defend their free speech in court if necessary. But they could easily have decided, "Nah, it's not worth the risk" (especially since copyvios and CP can also be criminal matters). If websites are having to potentially put up money for legal fees to defend their free speech, is free speech still inviolate?

Morally, one might be tempted to say, "Who really cares about the property rights of website owners, especially if they're going around advocating infringing others' property rights?" For example, suppose the website of Smart Approaches to Marijuana gets hacked. I could say, "Well, they were campaigning against people's right to smoke a joint in their own house, so why should I care about their property rights?" It's like when Nazis say, "I have a right not to be punched in the face when I'm talking about why Jews should be sent to the ovens!" Ailurus (talk) 16:31, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

Rationalwiki has been described as "Listing those who subtract from the sum of human knowledge."
And I think that, for just about anyone out there, that should be how it works; if the law is practically nothing more than a blunt weapon for the rich to use against those who don't think they have the resources to mount a decent defense (such as with Britain's legal definition of libel), then it falls a fair distance on the outright counterproductive side when it comes to reducing misinformation, but if it were simply "everything's fair game" then (setting aside the ever-increasingly transparently corrupt media monopolies for a moment,) the truth could be expected to win any war of attrition.
If only companies beyond a certain threshold (at which pretty much any of them can reasonably be expected to be able to defend themselves in court) were subject to laws regarding libel/copyright infringement/etc ...then the social and economic effects intended by those laws would still be 99% standing strong (as, after all, it is a targetting of the 1% who own 99% of financial power), whilst the chilling effect of bogus DMCA complaints could no longer carve a particular desired shape out of the wild world of Web 2.0.
This would, ideally, allow and encourage media giants reporting on a given subject to scoop the facts up off the top as they bubble up to the surface (and then serve it up to the public in their usual for-profit manner). Ideally. But many news outlets regularly break the law as is, anyway, just out of the sheer unlikeliness that anyone who actually has the resources to sue them would. ~ <3 18:17, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
I think that the comic is talking about how people say that their free speech is being violated when people choose not to associate them, as shown in the fourth panel. Vorarchivist (talk) 19:04, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
Free speech is hardly coextensive with First Amendment law, as that tired cartoon suggests. I'm old enough to remember the 'Legion of DecencyWikipedia's W.svg'. It was a Roman Catholic organization ostensibly organized to seek the suppression of 'indecent' films and entertainments. 'Indecency' in its estimation also included breathing a word of criticism of the Roman church. Its MO was to boycott not only offending theatres, but offending newspapers that advertised the shows, and threaten advertisers who ran ads in any offending publication. For a great while it had marked success; even though American anti-Catholicism was a fairly potent force until the Kennedy administration, you'd scarcely see a word of it breathed in print or in film. Local police and newspaper people were often aware of clerical pedophiles; the scandals never made the newspapers until the 1980s at the earliest. Now, according to the xkcd interpretation, the boycotts organized by the LoD were entirely within their rights as citizens and consumers, and free speech was not impacted at all. Which is the reason why I think that xkcd cartoon is stupid and clueless. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 19:30, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
So under your definition of free speech does choosing not to watch something can violate free speech? Is it only when people choose to not watch something in groups or when they publicly declare that they won't watch something? In the situation you presented I don't think that boycotting was immoral, what was immoral was doing it in order to prevent news of mass rape and getting laws passed to allow the states to censor films. (also I'm putting up the legion of decency as a suggested article on the to-do list)Vorarchivist (talk) 20:01, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
When people organize to threaten sponsors of content they find 'offensive', free speech is definitely violated IMO, even if the First Amendment isn't. Organizations advocating censorship by boycott are no less pernicious than those advocating censorship by law, and perhaps are more so; laws, after all, must be interpreted impartially and are subject to some checks and balances, while boycotts called for by pressure groups are subject to no such checks. Similarly, I'm appalled by the hypocrisy people who said they abhorred 'doxxing' in the context of Gamergate, but are entirely OK with it if the victim attended a white supremacist rally. If it's dirty fighting, it's equally dirty for everybody. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 20:08, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
So would a government outlawing (certain types of) boycott (movement) then be defending free speech, rather than attacking it? Evil Zionist (talk) 20:49, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
Legally, it's complicated in the USA. Some boycotts may be illegal under 'refusal to deal' or unfair competition laws. Unions are specifically forbidden from 'secondary boycotts' against suppliers or customers of a boycotted business, under laws that forbid sympathy strikes. These were occasionally used against unions for labor dispute related boycotts, but unions don't even have the kind of clout any more where that's much of a worry. It's illegal, also, for a business to participate in the Arab boycott of Israel. Enforcing these laws is always going to be difficult, but they do affect free speech in complicated ways. It's another form of the old paradox of how to respect the free speech rights of people who want to abolish free speech for others. My original point is that that xkcd cartoon takes a very crabbed and myopic view of free speech, and sides too easily with the authoritarians who would deny free speech to people they disagree with. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 22:43, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
I remember when that comic came out. It was during the whole scandal with that 80+ year old basketball owner whose (mixed-race) mistress caught him making racist statements behind closed doors. The question was whether the old fart should be punished for being a racist when he hadn't done racist things, and whether a person with reprehensible views that doesn't go out of their way to promote those views should still be punished. CorruptUser (talk) 03:04, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
On the one hand, we're told that racism is "systemic", which seems to turn it into something like total depravity in Calvinist theology. It's an omnipresent, invisible force for evil that will catch up with you and catch you unawares despite your best efforts; for this is a battle no mortal can win. On the other hand, we're told that 'racists' are public pariahs who deserve to be hounded into selling their basketball team. I still don't feel terribly sorry for the guy, but he did have private conversations exposed. If doxxing is bad, so is this. Again, an offense against basic human decency excused because nothing's too terrible to do to a 'racist'. There is a problem here, even if fervor won't let you see it. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 04:51, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
The problem with most arguments of 'systemic anti-whatever-ism'-ism claims is that they often appear to be special pleading and when you argue that 'the system' is biased against your own particular groups as well you get slapped down and besides 'all these proponents do is complain rather than attempt to reshape public opinion/attempt to set up a system that is inclusive (and most people tend to find 'street-viewpoint-shouters' annoying besides).'
There is 'free speech', there is 'free speech and being courteous and considerate to those around you, while avoiding look-at-me offensiveness', there is 'occasionally expressing outlier views in private (and whether, and under what circumstances, this makes the speaker a hypocrite)', also 'forcing people to be mealy mouthed and spending more time in contemplating whether what they say will actually or theoretically offend anyone including Roko's Basilisk', 'making people think (negative thoughts about the 'intelligence', 'dumb viewpoints' and 'mental acuity' of the speaker) and there are 'vile rants'.
The point is - where is the boundary between 'being courteous'/'taking one's money, ears and votes elsewhere' and 'free speech'; 'taking action to cause change to something more acceptable' and 'causing disruption for no good reason apart from putting the perpetrator in the news'? Often the boundary differs for 'the person taking the action' and 'the person being acted upon.' 109.150.43.103 (talk) 09:22, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
@Smerdis
Whoa whoa WHOA. Holy shit, "pariah"? Don't you know that the Parayar are a proud and noble people, who were unfairly forced into the lowest caste in Sri Lanka? How would you like it if YOUR ethnicity was used as the go-to word to describe someone as the worst of the worst, hmm? "Oh there goes Smerdis, he's a bit of Brit around here".
Ok, obviously you know by now I'm not 100% serious about calling you racist, though the etymology of "Pariah" is true. The point is what YOU, NOW, consider to be acceptable speech will not necessarily be acceptable in the future. And when you are no longer up to date on the latest list of what is and is not acceptable to say, for example everything was "gay" and "retarded" just a decade ago yet you wouldn't hear that now, well, you get the idea.
I also just like bringing that up whenever someone uses the p-word in a topic about racism and such :P.
You racist fucknugget. CorruptUser (talk) 12:38, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
But ... the alliteration! - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 14:40, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

There could also be an appeal to force involved -- "either agree with me or you have to leave my property." If the purpose isn't actually to save yourself some time (maybe you had nothing better to do than talk to them), but rather just to pressure them into acting like they agree with you, then it starts to make it seem like maybe you are the one with the weak argument, if a threat or dissociation is all you can resort to.

The way I decide whether I'm going to continue arguing with someone is, I consider, "Am I learning anything from this argument?" There are some Nazis who just say go on and on about how much they hate Jews, blacks, etc. There are others who will actually start arguing based on facts. E.g. I was telling a Nazi, "the Gleiwitz incident, even if it had been carried out by Poland, shouldn't have merited completely taking over Poland" and he said, "Here's a big issue with Gleiwitz. Much of what is known about the Gleiwitz incident comes from the affidavit of SS-Sturmbannführer Alfred Naujocks at the Nuremberg Trials. While on one hand, I can say, 'alright, this might be so,' on the other hand it's the Nuremberg trials. In a normal trial I think that the prosecution tries to get as much corroborating evidence as possible. They try to prove each of their points in several different ways so that it's inconceivable to the jury that their narrative is flawed. This looks like a lot of boring redundancy to the jury, but that's why it's done. So basing the entirety of our knowledge of a politically-charged and infamous event perpetrated by a defeated enemy on the affidavit (not even testimony, just an affidavit???) of one person is pretty weak sauce. It destroys the credibility of everything we think we know. So I'm not going to deny the event right out, but that's going to be filed under 'unlikely.'"

That's actually a valid argument (whether it's sound is another story). If they're going to argue like that rather than saying, "That's just a story spread by the Jews; they're such liars" then maybe it's worth investing time in the conversation. Ailurus (talk) 13:54, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Hawking Vs Hunt: Science Vs Politics?[edit]

This is brewing in the UK: New future article? https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/aug/19/jeremy-hunt-says-stephen-hawking-is-wrong-on-the-nhs

that fucking weasel's name is clearly rhyming slang. from this day forth if someone irks you, refer to them as a fucking jeremy. AMassiveGay (talk) 17:54, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

Does censoring the Nazis make them more violent, or less violent?[edit]

I was thinking that if the Nazis are allowed to blow off some steam by going around saying, "Gas the kikes" maybe they feel less need to actually gas them. Also, theoretically, if you let them present all their arguments, then you have an opportunity to refute them. So is this a case where it's best to give them enough rope to hang themselves? If they're allowed to speak, and the public rejects their arguments, then they can't say the only reason why they don't have more support is that they were censored. Ailurus (talk) 18:47, 19 August 2017 (UTC)

That's a nice idea but I think that if that worked they would have hung themselves 80 years ago incited of taking over Germany. Also they made a lot of loud statements back then too but they still escalated to actual genocide.Vorarchivist (talk) 18:59, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
Just throwing this out here. Evil Zionist (talk) 19:54, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
I'd argue that silence can do the opposite and make the people believe in a silent majorityWikipedia's W.svg. I forget what the name is but there's a logical fallacy where people will assume that silence means that people must be agreeing with them which means that loud Nazis and quiet anti-Nazis might make it look like the Nazi's are more popular.
Unless you are suggesting actively shunning people who go to these rallies in order to invoke the spiral of silence.Vorarchivist (talk) 22:39, 19 August 2017 (UTC)
There's probably a middle path here that we're not finding. We are seeing open white supremacists today because this movement has been growing semi-underground, in formerly obscure internet echo chambers. On the other hand, the identitarian Left with its notions of collective guilt, is itself not guiltless for chasing people into these corners. The thing is that less-educated white workers are suffering. Their issues should be taken seriously. They would benefit greatly from a revival of social and economic democracy. But these people are mostly unable to contextualize the judgmental cant of identity leftism, and likely to become the targets of its pious outrage. We need to cultivate the ability to listen to them and address their concerns straightforwardly. Telling them they've got it made because they're white is specifically not helping. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 19:12, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

The assumption here is often that violence stops Nazis. You seem to forget that the street violence between communists, anarchists, and Nazis was very frequent leading up to 1933. For their part the Nazis did use it to help sell their platform, so it backfired in that way, but much more importantly, it didn't work. Lord Aeonian (talk) 03:24, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

I think Hitler once said there were only two ways to stop the Nazis once he started going. Either complete compassion to the point where the Nazis couldn't even make up any stories about how "oppressed" they were, or such overwhelming force that made people too scared to join.
Since it's too difficult to get everyone on board with "be nice to the Nazis 100% of the time", it's much easier to go with plan "beat the ever loving shit out of them". Feels better too. CorruptUser (talk) 15:10, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

My point is that having Nazis spout there shit openly and without anybody contradicting them will embolden them and move discourse to the right. Nazis getting counter-marches or even violence in their face wherever they appear will certainly produce a different outcome. Evil Zionist (talk) 23:24, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Having Nazis parading openly, while getting huge counterdemonstrations that make them impossible to ignore, strikes me as the worst of all possible outcomes. It gives their opinions publicity while confirming the impression that they are being persecuted for their beliefs, and motivates people to seek out the dark corners where they hide. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 02:38, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
That's not what has empirically happened. In those places where there were no counter-manifestations, Nazi rallies got bigger. In those places where there were huge counter rallies, their rallies got smaller. If you look out the window and all you see is Nazis, how likely does that make you to utter your anti-Nazi views? If you look outside and all you see is anti-Nazis, how likely does that make you to utter your anti-Nazi views? Evil Zionist (talk) 17:10, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

I have lived in the Basque country for the past twenty years or so. When I started living here the terrorist group ETA was very active and killed people regularly. ETA itself was (partially) the outcome of the regime of the fascist dictator Franco.

ETA's goals of Basque independence (though not its methods) were supported by perhaps 50% of the population (number open to debate). As people felt they might be the subject of ETS's attentions if they spoke up, most anti-nationalists kept their mouths very tightly closed whenever the question of Basque nationalism came up. Nationalists, on the other hand, felt completely free to voice their opinions.

Now that ETA has almost completely disappeared as a force you hear a much wider range of opinions.

So, yes, violence can certainly stop people from voicing their opinions - but I am not sure that we would want to promote this.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 07:41, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Alex Jones being a dumbass[edit]

https://www.pscp.tv/w/1ynKOVkQNjQxR Knightofjustice123 (talk) 04:41, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

I think this needs a transcript with things with comments debunking what he says Knightofjustice123 (talk) 04:41, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

CheckUser[edit]

When are we going to be updating the RationalWiki privacy policy, @CheeseburgerFace? RationalWiki has checkuser now hmm? (talk) 16:59, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Why update it when nothing has changed? oʇɐʇoԀʇɐϽʎzznℲ (talk/stalk) 18:03, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

It's time to kill the forums[edit]

In the past year, the entire forum namespace has had 46 edits. The "forum category" pages like Site-related discussion and General discussion don't work anymore. (And nobody even noticed!) I think it's time to kill RationalWiki:Forum and the other main forum pages (but leave the forum namespace untouched). Community consensus, go! Herr FüzzyCätPötätö (talk/stalk) 18:32, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Kill it with fire[edit]

  1. Never used the forum and have hardly ever seen it in use.—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 18:42, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
  2. I didn't know it existed until a week ago. Bongolian (talk) 20:05, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
  3. Let it burn. I'll bring the marshmallows. RoninMacbeth (talk) 20:48, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
  4. Forums are so Web 1.0. Fox (talk) 23:26, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
  5. I have not used the forum in 2 years. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 23:48, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
  6. -💎📀1️⃣ (talk) 23:55, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
  7. Probably kill it. I don't really like the wiki format of discussion. —Kazitor, pending 05:28, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
  8. Put it out of its misery. Spud (talk) 10:32, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
  9. Forums are cool but this one looks a bit sad, and to me it seems partially broken. All subforums start with "Extension:DynamicPageList (DPL), version 2.3.0 : Warning: Unknown parameter 'addnew' is ignored." and then goes on with listing the gazillion of existing parameters. And according to the overview all threads are created by %AUTHOR%.–Mad physicist (talk) 13:52, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
  10. The DPL stuff is unlikely to work again, unused. Christopher (talk) 15:21, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
    thanks, in that case we should get rid of it.–Mad physicist (talk) 19:16, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
  11. I'll bring the Molotovs'Legionwhat do you want from me 01:18, 22 August 2017 (UTC)

Keep[edit]

  1. There have been useful discussions there in the past. There may still be some in the future. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 19:17, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
    That's fair -- I wondered if open-discussion essays could take the place of fora. (Thoughts?) Also: The forum namespace won't close -- people can still make new forum threads manually. FuzzyCatPotato!™ (talk/stalk) 20:10, 20 August 2017 (UTC)
    Perhaps keeping an archive of the forums would be a good idea. While the forums are, for all intents and purposes, abandoned, there are some interesting discussions in there. Alternatively, we could re-boot the forums (thinking a MyBB forum with bridge to the main site). CJ-Moki (talk) 02:09, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
  2. It could be used again. What problem is solved by removing them?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 07:30, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
  3. We don't delete talk pages, maybe get the fuzz to add a template saying they're not used anymore? Christopher (talk) 15:08, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
    Again: Not deleting the forum namespace. Just the hubpages. oʇɐʇoԀʇɐϽʎzznℲ (talk/stalk) 15:16, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
    My mistake, I support deleting those pages. Christopher (talk) 15:20, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Goat[edit]

Would mention of [1] be appropriate here (or at least 'vaguely amusing')? 82.44.143.26 (talk) 18:06, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

So[edit]

So you fucked up my password security? Tsk. (Besides, any fule kno my password was "TKroolzAmesdroolz") Fox (talk) 22:37, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

What?—CheeseburgerFace (talk) 02:24, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
@Fox must've just checked their email. See here for more information. Herr FuzzyKatzenPotato (talk/stalk) 04:58, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Last thing I want to do[edit]

Last thing I want to do is divert people's time from rationalwiki, but if there are any active editors on wikipedia who have some knowledge about religion and violence and atheism in general, I'd recommend contributing to these articles. These articles have been gutted recently and needs more neutral and detached content (well sourced content and more actors in the debate). This is especially the case in: violence, criticism, demographics, irreligion and several other articles. Again, I don't want to divert attention, just advise users who use both wikis to take a look improve them for all readers. ShabiDOO 13:26, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Be careful to avoid concerns of WP:MEAT. Fuzzy "Cat" Potato, Jr. (talk/stalk) 13:35, 21 August 2017 (UTC)
Yes. That's why I asked for "neutral and detached and well sourced" content (there is so little) and more people in the debate (there are almost no people). But yeah, it is a concern. ShabiDOO 13:53, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

There are lots of forms of discrimination besides just racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. -- which ones should be banned?[edit]

An example might be personality type. Companies are totally free to discriminate based on the results of personality tests that the administer. They can say, "Sorry, no introverts allowed. We want bubbly, outgoing people on our sales force."

Or a court might say, "Because of your antisocial personality disorder, you need to be put away for a long time," the idea being that if you lack a conscience, you might be more inclined to harm other people. There are a lot of sociopaths, though, who say, "I don't really care about other people, but I still usually obey the law and try to help other people, just out of self-interest." (Presumably a sociopath with a month left to live wouldn't bother planting a tree for the next generation to enjoy, though.) There are also a lot of non-sociopaths who feel guilty about committing crimes but still commit them, because they have poor impulse control, or are in a desperate situation, etc.

My point being, if racism is bad because sweeping generalizations about a race can result in rejecting perfectly good people, the same could be said about a lot of other generalizations that people rely upon. Age is another factor in criminality; an older person will have a statistically lower chance of committing crimes, and courts are free to take age into account. Yet some young defendants will not recidivate, while some older defendants will.

The thing about race, though, is that it's not only used as a factor for judging how someone is likely to act, but it's also a sign of genetic closeness to oneself. All else equal, natural selection would tend to favor one's giving preference to those who are genetically close to oneself. Not only does this directly help propagate one's genes, but genetically close people might be more inclined to return favors given. For that reason, corporations have rules against nepotism, and judges recuse themselves in cases where family members are involved.

An interesting thing about capitalism, by the way, is that while producers can't discriminate, often consumers can. A store owner can get sued if he says, "I refuse to bake a cake for this gay couple." But a customer would be totally free to say, "I refuse to buy a cake from this gay baker." A big corporation has to give gay bakers equal employment opportunity, and either suffer the losses from consumers' discrimination, or shut down the bakery if it becomes unprofitable. If they do shut down the bakery, then the only bakeries left in that area will be small businesses, where the owner is also the baker, and then the only owners who would be left in business would be the non-gay ones. Therefore, the only companies safe from this kind of consumer discrimination are ones like car manufacturers that can't possibly conduct their business on a small scale like a baker could. Ailurus (talk) 16:05, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

If we have an article on the US Dollar, should we have one on the €?[edit]

Should we? After all, there is a lot of crankery about people saying it "can't work" because Europe is "not a single country" and stuff like that. Evil Zionist (talk) 20:37, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Seems reasonable if you can create more than a stub. Bongolian (talk) 21:40, 21 August 2017 (UTC)