RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive134

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, (new)(back)

You guys get to help me fire someone. Congrats!!![edit]

So here's the deal, the other night at work, there was a massive fight between two of my employees. One of them is a new guy: he's got one hell of a bad attitude, but gets shit done and is the second most productive person on my crew after yours truely. The other guy has been there for over 3 years and is as nice as can be (hell, I'll say outright that he's a good friend of mine), but lacks any sense of urgency and is completely incompetent when it comes to achieving production goals. I had asked them to team up on a low-priority machine to ensure that it got work some work done at some point. Naturally, my new guy wound up doing all the work on both his higher-priority job and this low-priority machine, while my tenured guy barely met his goal on his main machine, even though his goal on that machine alotted him 3 hours of spare time. This would be easy to deal with, except that my new guy, in his passdown e-mail for the day (which gets read by everyone in the plant, including my bosses) he spent the entire e-mail bashing my tenured guy when the entire point of the e-mail is to be respectful and just say what you got done for the day. So, here's where the dilema is: I can't possibly continue to run my shift with both of these guys and need to can one, and my boss (the plant manager) wouldn't likely let me fire both guys. SO, which of these guys do I fire? The new guy who gets shit done but has had run-ins with everyone in the plant, including his superiors, because of his shitty attitude? Or the incompetent guy with a good attitude and more tenure? Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 10:58, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

The bad attitude guy may well end up causing even bigger problems for you down the line. Music Causes Promiscuity (talk) 11:04, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Don't you have to options of verbal and written warnings? AMassiveGay (talk) 11:53, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I've given ample warnings to the old guys before (in fact, he's on his last warning before HR goes over my head and fires him). The new guy's had a few warnings about his attitude, also, as he's had a run-in with a much less tolerant supervisor in the past. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 12:32, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
In that case I would recommend firing the longer-term fellow, who sounds as though he is headed for the unemployment line anyway, and retaining the hot-tempered man, who (at least based on the information provided here) is more likely to be able to work out his issues, and in the meantime will actually get something done on the job. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 18:39, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I am here assuming that (a) you've already warned the old hand about his performance and (b) already warned the new guy about his attitude and (c) neither of them is capable/willing of fixing that. Assuming those things are true, you don't have much choice: fire the new guy. The old guy will still come in and not ruin things, even if he isn't as good as you'd like, whereas the new guy presents what sounds like an unacceptable level of risk. Essentially, you really just want Guy #3, the competent-yet-courteous new guy you will hire this year or the next. Your tenured employee is just someone you can rely on not to screw up too much until the better guy comes along. But if you kept the new guy, you'd not only be out the reliable (though crappy) guy, but also you'd be running at high risk of having to also get rid of the new guy before too long.--ADtalkModerator 12:10, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I agree with the other posters. New guy will give you more problems later. But you need to have a few words with old guy don't you?--BobSpring is sprung! 12:26, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, I'm not used to an environment where it's legal to just fire people based on advice from some pseudonymous-at-best Wiki. So for me this is about process. The bad attitude guy should be going through an HR process to fix that attitude (on company time, if he wants to be an asshole off the job that's not your problem) and the slacker should be going through an HR process to get them to shape up. So whichever one runs out of written warnings, bad performance reviews and appeals first would be the answer. Continuing to employ either of them in this current state is not good, ideally you want to make them model employees, finding and training someone new is expensive, right? But if it's as bad as you've described and after actually trying you can't fix their problems I'd say sooner or later both have to go, whatever the order.
In passing my attention is drawn to your first sentence "a massive fight" which sounds pretty dramatic. I'm not sure how to interpret that. Actual brawling at work is gross misconduct (in blue collar environments sometimes the contract spells this out, but it's usually accepted as industry practice and thus an implicit contract term for almost any worker), so if that's what happened you should fire as many employees as you have to in order to be sure you got everyone who started the fight, willingly participated or watched rather than breaking it up, and you should summon the police. But I suspect you just mean "yelling" or possibly even "moaning in a series of emails" which are not gross misconduct although they may need some concrete disciplinary action. (talk) 12:28, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
By "massive fight", I mean everything except a fistfight. Lots of arguing and, to try to frame it better, trolling of eachother and insults and yelling thrown every which way at a constant rate and lots and lots of swearing. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 12:32, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
And for that, somebody gets fired? The new needs to be told to tone it down a bit, the old guy needs to be told to shape up or ship out. If his behaviour is causing the disruption, then he is to blame, not the new guy. From what I can tell, the new guy does his job. So he has an attitude. Some people don't go to work to make friends. PS I have no idea why, but for the longest time I thought you worked in a porn shop. Maybe all the night shifts? --PsyGremlin講話 12:40, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Someone will get fired because both have had ample warnings and neither of them has done a damn thing to fix their issues while, at the same time, everyone else on my shift has grown tired of their disruptions and decided that either one or the other must go. P.S: I wish I worked at a porn shop, instead of this nut house. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 12:48, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
At the end of the day, it comes down to one thing: Somebody isn't doing the work, and this is what's causing the tensions (as I see it). I understand this is a mate of yours but if he is "completely incompetent when it comes to achieving production goals" then he shouldn't be there. Either that, or fire the one with the smallest tits. --PsyGremlinPrata! 12:55, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
My two cents would be to side with bad attitude guy. His bad attitude may in fact be as much a company problem as it is his personal problem. I know from experience it's no fun at all to work with incompetents. When you're faced with bad management then often the only choice is to argue beyond what would otherwise be considered reasonable in another situation. Perhaps the key to making the guy both productive and cooperative is to get him some coworkers who pull their own weight? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 13:26, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Fire both of them and get someone with a better attitude and aptitude all round. Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic?Moderator 13:51, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Am I alone in thinking that their manager ought to have stepped in before things got this bad? Surely this didn't blow up out of nowhere? I mean, previous written warnings and all. Managing means getting your team to cooperate, not just choosing who to fire when it goes wrong. And now you want us to step in and help when we don't know all the facts. Hello, don't you see the problem here. Bad Faith (talk) 19:09, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
You're right, Goonie should resign immediately. Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic?Moderator 20:24, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I don't think they should be working together. They obviously can't collaborate. Some people are just not meant to work together. Time for a conference: individually with each, then perhaps one with both; tell them what the expectations are and how they are not meeting them, listen to their concerns, then develop a plan of action, with set goals, keep close tabs, another meeting in a month to see how things are shaping up. Refugeetalk page 09:36, 11 December 2011 (UTC)

UPDATE: Wound up fioring the new guy with a bad attitude. It turns out, according to my other co-workers and other supervisors, he'd been intentionally lying to me and misleading me about his production versus my tenured guy's production just so it could have the residual effects of making him look good and my tenured guy look bad. Needless to say, he also took it upon himself to write a very nasty e-mail to my tenured guy that I dind't know about at the time of this posting and, after seeing the contents of that e-mail, I decided that this was workplace harrassment and abuse and that I would (natuarally) not tolerate the new guys bullshit anymore. Thus, the bad attitude guy is firied, the tenured guy keeps his job, and I have a lot of apologizing to do to my tenured guy. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 14:47, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

yay! I didn't like his attitude anyway. lol. :p Important lesson here: talk to all involved, don't take one person's word without input from the other(s). Then again, I don't know anything, I've never been in management. And I hope someone posts after me. recently, I've been a thread-killer. :-( Refugeetalk page 02:01, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Hope the apologizing goes well. Nowwhat? 02:24, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Such drama! The angriest work-related e-mail I ever saw was a circular requesting that people not chill their soda in a bin of ice maintained in the break room. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 09:00, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
"For absolutely no reason should there ever be any wood in the experimental hall." from above. From a coworker "What's the difference between highly flammable and extremely flammable". Nowwhat? 03:24, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Out of curiosity, what was the ice supposed to be used for? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:33, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
It was meant to be put in drinks, so chilling soda cans and bottles on it was unhygienic. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:15, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Cherry picking?[edit]

Apparently, if you trawl through magazines aimed at men, find the right looking quotes and strip them of context they look just like quotes you've similarly mined from rapists. Who knew? Of course, it's science-by-press-release here, notably released before the paper is published because I doubt they'd be allowed to make that conclusion just from what they've done here. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 19:28, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Quotes with that many ellipses always smack of mining. The study, though, seems to be an attempt at demonstrating that laddie mags have sexist content -- stop the presses! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:15, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I think this mostly just tells us that both the rapists interviewed, and the writers who were quoted are men. The views expressed are unsophisticated, in some cases the wording chosen is crass (e.g. "smash" meaning "to have sexual intercourse with") but there's nothing much† here that would set off alarm bells if I heard it from an acquaintance. In fact some of it reads roughly like "Kenny", a Scottish mercenary who I know through a few women who apparently find his lack of sophistication (or ability to fake it. hard to say) charming. Kenny loudly insisting that they bare their breasts for him is apparently just fine, though no doubt they'd object violently if he tried to take things into his own hands, so to speak.
† The stuff about changing the law stands out, and indeed that turns out to be a rapist. I don't think any lads magazines are in favour of banning women from walking around in next to nothing, quite the contrary, for their readers it's a free show. (talk) 23:41, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I would speculate that these researchers pre-determined the conclusions of their study from the works of Dworkin and MacKinnon. The scientific studies I know are objective and not laced with the researchers' views on public and social policy. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:53, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, it's always hard to know how much of what you see in something like Jezebel (or the Daily Mail, or...) has anything to do with the actual work by the researchers, let alone their opinions. The problem is that PR companies genuinely believe there's "no such thing as bad PR" so the measurement of PR outcomes for a university is sheer coverage. This results in trolling, take the outcome of a project to develop universal literacy tests and re-imagine it as a critique of inner-city primary school education and voila, hundreds of articles about it instead of one column inch in a niche publication.
So, sure, it's possible this is an exercise in fitting data to a pre-conceived conclusion, "All men are rapists" or whatever. But it may actually have been a perfectly legitimate scientific investigation whose true purpose, results, and conclusions were tidied away to get a good story. (talk) 12:52, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
The press-release says little else, actually. If anything it's laced with even more commentary from the authors and less about what was done. And they've clearly released it before the paper is published, which is one alarm bell, and I think it'd be worth reserving any judgment until you could read that - but I do not like press-release before paper, that's just wrong. Assuming the experimental parameters are as the press-release says... I have to wonder how they got it published in the first place, it doesn't really say anything. Scarlet A.pnggnostic 13:07, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
Fortunately, my field is small and obscure enough that hardly anyone understands our papers, so PR departments and newspapers never even try to give them this sort of treatment. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 18:09, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the PR link. It cites and references OBJECT, so yeah we're dealing with people who'd decided the conclusions before they began the research. This summary of the paper is basically just OBJECT's standard talking points but presented as science. "Men read this stuff. Some men are rapists, therefore this stuff makes men into rapists. Therefore it is our sorrowful duty to regulate it out of existence". OBJECT's position could be summarised as something along the lines of "We're not about preventing people from making choices, it's just that their choices are wrong and we know better" a familiar refrain to anyone who has had abortion counselling from one of the US anti-abortion groups... (talk) 19:15, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
It must be nice to work in fields where no one in the press can take interest long enough for them to represent you as Not Even Wrong. But sometimes if you read the releases, they're just as bad. You basically have university press officers trying to drum up support for their institution, so it's the same motive producing the same effect in the end. And yeah, acting as a mouthpiece for a charity, even a worthy one, flags up so many conflict-of-interest bells it's hard to take seriously. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 21:26, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
This "OBJECT" group is not a "charity" in any meaningful sense of the word; it is a political pressure group whose activities consist exclusively of lobbying and hounding publicity. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 08:40, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

I know what I what for christmas....[edit]

...this AMassiveGay (talk) 22:35, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

Fuck christmas, I've already bought it. I have soooo much machismo AMassiveGay (talk) 22:50, 12 December 2011 (UTC)
Hahaha. I have the tiger and the giraffe. Now...whether or not I'm getting any more is questionable. -wearing my tiger ones right now actually---Dumpling (talk) 16:34, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
We could so have filthy furry sex AMassiveGay (talk) 18:24, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
HAHAHAHA! ...OH MY~ ;D--Dumpling (talk) 02:27, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Higgs Boson[edit]

How exciting is this, eh? Looks like they might have discovered it. That's how science works, Aschlafly, Rayment, et al. They study, they think, they create hypotheses, they discard, they hone, they experiment, they collaborate, they predict, they experiment some more, they discover! They don't rely on an ancient goat-herders' moral text. Ajkgordon (talk) 12:59, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

And it would have been about as equally exciting if they hadn't discovered it. Perhaps more so. Science, bitches. It works. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 13:28, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
Indeed. Ajkgordon (talk) 14:46, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
Good old Guardian, always keen to point out that just because it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, doesn't mean that it isn't somebody in a duck costume.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 15:55, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
Or as my friends like to say, "AFLAC!" -- Seth Peck (talk) 17:31, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
So this is the boson on HMS Higgs? --BobSpring is sprung! 18:33, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
It's a "maybe" isn't it? It's cool, but I don't get out of bed for anything less than string theory developing an actual empirical observation. Scarlet A.pngtheist 18:45, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
For which you'd need a particle accelerator the size of Jupiter's orbit and consuming the entire energy output of the sun, right? Ajkgordon (talk) 19:09, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
I assume you live with crippling bedsores, then? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 19:40, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, it's painful and sometimes boring, but dammit I have high expectations of science. Hawking promised us the mind of God, I'll bloody well hold him to it. Scarlet A.pngbomination 01:38, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

what does depression feel like?[edit]

ive been a user here for a while, but im not really comfrtable putting my name, even my user name on this thread. i know over the years a user or two here have talked about depression, etc. and m just wondering what this sounds like to you. i dont have any thoughts of suicide as of now, but just thinking forward to the future, everything seems really bleak, i guess. im tired virtually all of the time, which may because i dont sleep more than 4-5 hours a night because i cant sleep. ive been having a hard time focusing on stuff at shool and work and i dont remember as much as i used to (as in i study stuff or set out to do reports for work and cant concentrate, think of stuff i just learned a day or two before, etc.). more and more i just feel useless and dumb at everything i try to do and get really insecure about people relizing that. is this all normal or am i just overeacting to stress (ive had a lot of anxiety over the years and been told i should get treetment for it but i dont really like the idea...) i know the net isnt the place to solve problems but i just want to know what everyone thinks. sorry if this is really messy. ive been in one of these periods of feeling this way for the past few days and its making me too tired to really think straight. thanks. ;) User123 (talk) 01:16, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Sounds like the depression I have had. Although I tend to sleep more like 12+ hours. - π Moderator 01:19, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
My ebbs were always about sleeping for longer and longer, pushing back further and further... although external circumstances stopped it, if left to my own devices I'm convinced I'd come back around all the way again! But anyway, how it affects people is always a little different. I don't see depression as something in itself to worry about; sadness, feeling overwhelmed and stress are part of life. The ability to cope, on the other hand, is incredibly important. A little bit of stress when you can't cope is far worse than a lot of stress when you can. Straws and horses backs and all that. First you need to identify what is causing it. It seems to me that it's stress building and affecting concentration; the less you concentrate, the more stressed you feel, the more stress you feel... well, it's not called a vicious cycle for nothing. But I'm sure you know this and can realise it easily enough. You just need the encouragement to keep going because actually dealing with it is easy to talk about but difficult to do.
So... you need to make things easier for yourself. If you're over-committed, drop things. You might need to be harsh with what you choose to do but you need to free up not just the physical time but the mental space too - that's really vital. You might have 18 hours in the day, but your brain doesn't have 18 hours in it to give! If thoughts are stopping you sleeping, write them down instead. Whether it be a blog or just a word file or a diary; just clear it out of there and believe that you don't need to think about it any more. Sleep is the important thing to tackle, but the tricky part is that it's both a cause and a symptom. What cured my sleeping issues pretty quick was cutting caffeine and alcohol for a month (fruit teas can take their place excellently), and while I've crept into some bad habits, it's not what it used to be. Calming rituals help; hence why people smoke, but you'll want to find something better than that - and of course, this is RationalWiki so I'm not allowed to advocate stuff like Rescue Remedy.
But the one piece of advice that always gets me through personally is this: if you're still breathing, you haven't properly fucked up. Scarlet A.pngmoral 01:35, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I've been living with somebody whom has depression for a couple years, but I still don't know what advice to give. (But, he is really good at shutting other people out when he gets depressed...) Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 01:40, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I've used a strategy of writing my thoughts down when i cant sleep, which sometimes helps, but i always find that i end up writing so much that i stay up for hours doing that anyways. unfortunately my mind always seem to be switched "on". i cut caffeine, a lot of sugar, etc. out of my diet a few years ago and havent looked back, and ive never actually had alcohol in my life so i dont think thats it. so far ive been coping; i mean, ive dealt with emotions that oscillate back and forth for several years now, it just seems that the past few months have been especially concentrated on the negative feelings without any of the positives, despite all the good stuff i have to think about (supportive friends/partner, security, etc.). thats sort of what prompted me to start thinking about this. User123 (talk) 04:27, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Get treatment. Can be as simple as getting it off your chest when talking about it to your GP, through to counselling and medication. The hardest part is admitting you might be clinically depressed. The second hardest is believing that the therapist is doing any more than just listening to you whining. Which is sometimes almost all they are doing. But it can help. Take that first step and simply accept that you might feel shame and embarrassment but if that's the worst that can happen, so what? Good luck. Oh, and if you're religious, use your priest/rabbi/imam/whatever. Some people find that helps in the same way as any group therapy. Just don't turn fundie. Ajkgordon (talk) 09:18, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Chemical depression runs in my family, and has affected pretty much every male for as many generations as we know in detail about. It's often accompanied by alcoholism. At least for us, it manifests in black moods that have little to do with the external situation. Things can be going great on pretty much every front, but that nagging feeling that you don't like yourself, that you don't deserve the good things fate has put in your garden, brings you down constantly. In the worst cases, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, you end up alienating people yo care about because of it.
My dad finally bit the bullet in his late 40s and got on medication, which made a huge difference. Though it could just be that I'm less affected genetically than the rest of my family, I've avoided the most negative affects even though I feel the same tendencies. My personal theory is that music has kept me sane. When you practice an instrument, you get both the creative outlet for darker moods, and perhaps more importantly, a feeling of constant self-improvement. Because it's not directly related to external success or recognition, this kind of constant work on refinement skills affects internal change, and by definition there's no end to it. I'd think that anything providing a similar constant striving would fill the same void for me. Hope this helps. Junggai (talk) 10:06, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, sounds like depression. The good news is, catch it early enough and with the right meds and talking therapy you've got a good chance to come out the otherside. Just don't leave it too long to go without help. I don't know what the healthcare is like where you are, or your age, but insisting on seeing a paediatric psychiatrist might help if that's appropriate.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 12:37, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Stolen US spy plane[edit]

Why wasn't the thing built with an explosive inside to destroy it if it got lost? Would be better if they could set it off with Ahmadinejad in front of it, but a simple "go off if we lose contact for more than 15 minutes" would suffice. - π Moderator 02:29, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

IANAL, but I'm pretty sure it doesn't count as "stealing" when you illegally violate a sovereign nation's airspace. PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 02:38, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Still have no idea how that thing is intact. Anyways, it looks incredibly poor on US relations. The best way to not appear as the "Western aggressor" (as Tehran would say) is not to be spying on what is probably future strike targets. Osaka Sun (talk)
Yes, I'm going to take this multi-million dollar piece of military hardware that will be flying through hostile areas where it will likely be attacked physically or cyberly if discovered, and install a load of explosives, which will add undue weight to this flying device, that serve no purpose but to destroy the expensive vehicle in the event of a communications failure. Since this will also require a system wired into the on-board computer, I'm sure no enemy force would dream of hacking the plane and activating the explosives manually, destroying my very expensive drone without firing a single shot. This isn't the movies; self destruct mechanisms in real life are very rare. (talk) 03:29, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
It's a multiple ton chunk of metal. There's going to be casualties on the ground if you blow it up. -- (talk) 04:10, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
1. Destroying the drone is probably going to be a lot less expensive than handing it over to the enemy. If Iran were willing to give it back to the US without touching it, how much do you think the US would be willing to pay for that privilege? I'd wager a lot more than the thing cost in the first place.
2. The drone isn't supposed to be discovered, unlike most war machinery (tanks tend to be pretty conspicuous). If a drone ever does get discovered and attacked, there's a very good chance something has gone very very wrong and the drone is in rather a lot of trouble. Again, better to self-destruct and be on the safe side.
3. How do you imagine an enemy force casually hacks a drone from the ground? This isn't the movies; you don't hack a computer flying over your country by opening a laptop and clicking "Haxor teh mainframe". If it were that easy, every fucking jet ever would be void of computers.
4. Casualties are unlikely unless a lot of people gather around before it detonates. I would guess a self-destruct system wouldn't wait for that to happen. ONE / TALK 12:55, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
You ask how they could "hack" it? All they need to do is jam the reassurance signal and your automatic self-destruct does the rest for them. Remember, this was an intelligence flight. In a war you can respond to jamming by targeting the transmitter, but if the US wanted to blow up Iran they'd already be using bombers not drones. (talk) 13:23, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Fair point, but if I was designing the system, I wouldn't rely on a reassurance signal. I'd probably tell the drone something like "If your altimeter shows you're less than 1000ft from the ground and you're not anywhere near a US airbase and you're in enemy territory, detonate". ONE / TALK 14:23, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
What about an active self-destruct then? Send a message to tell it to blow up. OK, it could be hacked, but if the enemy were that good then they'd take it over and land it rather then blow it up. And you don't need that big an explosion do you? Something termite based would be pretty local I imagine. And if it goes off because the enemy are shooting at it? Well if the enemy can see it well enough to shoot at it them your covert surveillance is pretty blown already I'd imagine.--BobSpring is sprung! 13:36, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Because flying spy planes over foriegn soil is one thing, flying remote controlled bombs is another. Any self destruct mechanism falls into the latter category by default. There may not be much of a difference but there's enough to count. Bad Faith (talk) 14:04, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Don't think the US has got much compunction about using drones to kill people in other countries.--BobSpring is sprung! 14:18, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I'd say it's not enough to count. If the US has been willing to secretly fly bombs over foreign nations with the intention of detonating them, I'm willing to believe the US would also have no qualms about flying a "just-in-case-somebody-sees-us" remote controlled bomb over a hostile nation. Now I'm willing to believe they thought about a self-drstruct device and decided against it, and I'm willing to believe they had a good reason, but I'm not willing to believe that that is the reason. ONE / TALK 14:19, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Aha, karma![edit]

A slightly amusing anecdote: In the subway today, I threw my loose change into a homeless guy's styrofoam cup and then, a minute later, some tourist gave me a subway pass with a week's worth of money on it because he was leaving the country anyway. The first thing that popped into my head was "Aha, karma! Hey, wait a second, I don't believe in karma..." Such is the human mind. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:40, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Priming is a bitch. Tetronian you're clueless 04:14, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
We have correlation folks, therefore we must have causation. Bless humanity, we really can't seem to get away from that, can we?--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 12:39, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Now, did you just think "ah karma" or did you think "ah, a mystic force that ensures good deeds are rewarded and bad deeds are punished"? You could have kept the vague concept, kept the word, but migrated it to mean "the word I use to describe such coincidences when someone doing a good deed appears to get something worthwhile and someone doing a bad deed gets something I would call 'comeuppance'" (that's certainly what I would actually be thinking whenever exclaiming "ah, karma!" to myself). Both of these senses - "mystic force" and "word for a charming coincidence" - have same real-world observation (good deed then good thing happens, bad deed then bad thing happens) but the latter simply removes the mystical cause-and-effect part that has no observable quality. Scarlet A.pngbomination 13:55, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
You might also have meant "aha, a manifestation of the statistically elevated chances of receiving a good deed in a society to which i have contributed good deeds and therefore in which i have helped to instill a wider feeling of trust and charitableness and a greater predisposition to engage in economic transactions!" Unlikely, but y'know. ONE / TALK 16:16, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Nope, it was good ol' straight up magical thinking. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 16:52, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Happened to me once--I gave a waitress a $5 tip on an $8 check because she was so attentive and kept refilling my glass. The next day at work I was tipped $54 on a $99 check at the restaurant where I waited tables. "Karma" almost fooled me too. -- Seth Peck (talk) 17:13, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm, interesting. Here's a bizarre shopping analogy: I suppose the magical thinking aspect is on an easier to reach self, so you pick that up first and go "ah, karma!" Then you read the label and think "damn, no I don't like this full fat magical thinking karma" then put it back and reach for a higher shelf to find the less magical packets of I Can't Believe It's Not Karma. Irrationality is refusing to look for the step ladders. Scarlet A.pngpathetic 18:01, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I like it. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:28, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Ladies and gentlemen, may I interest you in an irony meter?[edit]

Harper's vocal excuse for getting out of Kyoto was that Japan wanted to leave, and China and India didn't want to do enough. Well look at that.

A single, 30 million population has so much power over ensuring the US's oil high and we do nothing for the drive of short-term profit. So sorry guys. Osaka Sun (talk) 08:33, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Hey! That's excuse number six on our list!--BobSpring is sprung! 13:11, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I love a good game of international Prisoner's dilemmaWikipedia. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 16:53, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Male engagement rings[edit]

Having just bought one of the lady persuasion, I got wondering about the fact you can buy male engagement rings. Anyone know a guy that has one. I could see myself with a black and rose gold one, maybe with a black diamond. On an aside, I know way too much about diamonds now. - π Moderator 12:19, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

It sounds as if congratulations are in order! (Assuming the lady in question has accepted your proposal.) MDB (talk) 13:07, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Thanks. Pimobile (talk) 13:52, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I'm against engagement rings in principle, particularly if they are of the diamond variety which I regard as a con trick by de Beers. Whatever happened to half a sixpence? Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic?Moderator 13:14, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
It's clear that this stuff has one hell of a mark-up. On Amazon they've got the things at a 90% reduction!--BobSpring is sprung! 13:28, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I do know someone who got one. Well, he had a ring, not sure if it was advertised as a "male engagement ring" as such. But then again, the ring he got for her was an antique one that wasn't advertised as an "engagement ring" either. Scarlet A.pngbomination 13:33, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I'd rather have one of these. MDB (talk) 13:39, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
In principle, I'm against engagement rings because of the implications butI tried explining that to Mrs Faith when we were considering tying the knot she called me a cheap bastard and if I didn't come through with the goods then the whole thing was off. So, yes, Mrs Faith got an engagement ring from me. Bad Faith (talk) 13:45, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Why would you want to marry someone like that? Fallacy (talk) 16:57, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
My attempt to explain how engagement rings was a bullshit story created by those Dutch assholes in the 1940s was met with disbelief. Pimobile (talk) 13:52, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Even the actual marriage rings for men date back just a few decades because soldiers were leaving their wives to go fight, so decided to get something to take with them. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:02, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
A while ago I knew someone who got engaged with this ring which is a cheap peweter thing you can find in most goth shops. I initially thought "ha, that's cheap and crap, I'd definitely want a 'proper' one that costs more than just £5" (though in my defence I imagine the fact the guy was an abusive cunt may have fueled the opinion that it was cheap and insulting). Now, this wouldn't be remarkable except for the fact that about 3 1/2 years later I got engaged myself... with the exact same ring. Really. It was what we had at the time, and was replaced by a different one a week later, but still, I think I may have busted an irony meter there. I must have been quite a materialistic twat 7 years ago... Scarlet A.pngpostate 14:11, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
@Fallacy - oh you sweet little mysogonistic troll. Why would I marry Mrs Faith - because for fifteen years now she's been my one, my only, my centre, my everything. She has her little ways, but then, I have mine and neither of us would want to swap, ever. Just because we differ on the importance of engagement rings doesn't mean that we differ on the important things and that's what's kept us together all these years, and hopefully many more. Bad Faith (talk) 17:12, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Okay, but none of that comes through a post where you say that somebody wouldn't marry you because your engagement ring wasn't good enough. Fallacy (talk) 18:05, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
...and one post is enough for an judgement you wish to make. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:22, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
If you look back at my post, you will see that I distinctly asked the question "Why would you want to marry someone like that?" I now have an answer. Fallacy (talk) 18:28, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Only when seen through your mysogenistic lens. For example, most of the guys I know wonder why it was really neccessary to spend all that cash on a wedding dress that was only going to get worn once. All of the women I know understand completely. It doesn't make women gold diggers, they just have a different set of priorities and, for Mrs Faith, a proper engagement ring was part and parcel of the deal. If I'd have refused then I would have been refusing to make her happy and that's a biggie. She wouldn't want to marry a guy who would put a few measly quid over something she saw as that important. We both have things we do because it makes the other one happy. That's what relationships are all about. Bad Faith (talk) 18:43, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Ah, I see. Because I don't understand things from a typical woman's perspective I'm a misogynist now. Fallacy (talk) 19:01, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
...AWWWWwWwwwww.--Dumpling (talk) 17:38, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Rings annoy the hell out of me -- not on other people, just the feeling of wearing one. I don't know how other people wear them, but I guess I have unusually sensitive fingers. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 17:53, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

You get used to it. Scarlet A.pngmoral 17:55, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

I wonder if this will cost Newt support...[edit]

... at CP and other YEC sites...

Newt Gingrich wanted to build a real-life Jurassic Park. MDB (talk) 16:07, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

I'll be using this a lot now.
Here's an appropriate quote I just snatched from a Guardian commentator: "I've just had the most wonderful thought. Gingrich as the Republican nominee. Ron Paul as a 3rd party candidate. Donald Trump as the ego-maniacal 4th party candidate. Please Santa, make it happen. I've been such a good boy this year." Osaka Sun (talk) 17:02, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Someday I'll wish upon a star and wake up where the clouds are far behind me.... -- Seth Peck (talk) 17:16, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Why aren't any other news stations reporting the methane level story?[edit]

This should be headline news right now. Could be the spark to getting back to climate negotiations. Osaka Sun (talk) 18:30, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

A link might be helpful. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:41, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Here, and it's already been WIGOed. Osaka Sun (talk) 18:48, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Christmas came early for Exxon this year! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:53, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Also, bad news on the OA front. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:54, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I thought the media enjoys such entertaining topics as mass extinction. Hopefully by the end of the day it'll be the top BBC story. Osaka Sun (talk) 19:00, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Only if it's a sexy (read: imaginary Planet X-style) kind of mass extinction. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:02, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
The P-T extinction that is (possibly) attributed to rapid climate change provoked by methane release was the most deadly on record and far deadlier than the K-T one that was attributed to an asteroid. That's got to count for some Sexy Points, right? Scarlet A.pnggnostic 21:39, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Apparently the American Geophysical Union is in HCM, according to Digital Journal. We gotta wait a week for confirmation. Osaka Sun (talk) 21:50, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I have no idea if this could transfer to a situation like this, but there are ways to capture fugitive emissions. Not that it matters all that much, no one wants to be the one to pay for it, so we all get to pay. Hooray! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:11, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

is this the methane clathrate thing ? its been used in several novels like "Mother of storms" by John Barnes. Hamster (talk) 22:17, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Either Fox News mislabeled another graphic...[edit]

... or Mitt Romney has had a major makeover. MDB (talk) 18:47, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "Obamney-care." Either that or the Reptoid playing Romney slipped up for a moment. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:49, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Or some pro-Gingrich/pro-Perry graphics personnel tried to imply Romney = Obama, assuming a very rusty Hanlon's Razor. -- Seth Peck (talk) 19:03, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
I'm trying to think how that sort of mistake is possible. Someone has physically compiled those photographs, right? Which means selecting something like Obama.jpg and putting it in there. Intern taking the piss? Scarlet A.pngpathetic 22:02, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Internet privacy thing[edit]

Question for those who know more than I about the internets. When I visited this site, on Chromium, it automatically knew my location wight down to a 10-house range. On Firefox, it did not. Cleared my cache on Chromium, went back, it still knew pretty much where I lived. Creepy. Where is my address stored on Chromium that it knows? PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 20:14, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

'kin miles out for me. I'm not even in the fallout range. Scream!! (talk) 21:43, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
On Chrome, a notification bar slides out from the top asking me if I want to share my location with the site. Firefox (starting from 3.5 I think) also does this. But it's supposed to ask you every time. Here's google's support article -- Nx / talk 21:48, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
"On Chrome, a notification bar slides out from the top asking me if I want to share my location with the site." Mine did too. And then my location appeared in the box, without me inputting any data. Even on a cleared cache, not signed into Google. So where did it get that info? PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 21:51, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
As for how it knows your location, that is entirely up to the browser. It could use GPS, for example, or just find your location based on your IP (that's what most do) etc. It's up to the browser to figure it out. Older websites just check your IP directly instead of asking your browser for your location. -- Nx / talk 21:53, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, fuckin creepy for me too. Maybe like a three-building radius. My IP is located in a different district from here. Junggai (talk) 23:03, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
That's why I don't use IPs. -- (talk) 20:54, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
You still need to enter your location for that game to work anyway... so you may as well let the browser do it automagically for you. Scarlet A.pngpathetic 22:07, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Maybe this is a American thing but it has me in central London which is a mere 250 miles away. Hey, all Yanks think that England consists entirely of London (plus, possibly, Stratford and Salisbury Plain). Bad Faith (talk) 22:14, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Stratford is in london. its at the end of the jubilee line. Not shakespeare one though AMassiveGay (talk) 23:34, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Bickmore's Laws (of Being Reasonable and other things)[edit]

Brickmore's Laws of Being Reasonable, [Thinking Outside] the Box, Being Biased and Being Open-Minded. Discuss.--ZooGuard (talk) 21:33, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

I'm in the habit of citing the "laws of the box" whenever this canard is played. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:38, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
All of those are really pretty good. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 21:45, 14 December 2011 (UTC)


Can't let this happen, people--User:Brxbrx/sig 04:14, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

I thought that was a couple months ago. Sam Tally-ho! 04:20, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Now it's in the House of Representatives, I believe--User:Brxbrx/sig 04:26, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
I saw an advert telling me to tell Congress to pass SOPA yesterday. DO NOT WANT.
Funnily enough we all ought to agree on this. SOPA and PROTECT-IP must be stopped. Blue (is useful) 04:43, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
I wonder why Wikipedia is not blanking itself in protest, like the Italian Wikipedia did when they had the censorship bill in the Italian legislature to deal with. That would get people's attention. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:50, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Probably because that would fuck over all British, Australian, Kiwis, South African, Nigerian, Indian, Canadian, … --ʤɱ netlabelist 14:06, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Maybe they see hope in this amendment? Blue (is useful) 04:55, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
But if it does, it wouldn't be a bad idea to leave the country. Osaka Sun (talk) 04:57, 15 December 2011 (UTC)


We may require an undertaker soon. Blue (pester) 04:39, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Indeed. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 04:42, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
What is happening with it, anyway? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:51, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Fuck if I know. Every e-mail I've sent to Trent about it has gone completely ignored. Such is life, I suppose. But we still have RationalWikiWikiWikisWiki. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 08:33, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
I think it collapsed under the weight of all that bickering over the awards. If I were a wiki I'd say "fuck it all" and implode. Bad Faith (talk) 13:59, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
And it looks like it took Capturebot with it. -- Nx / talk 18:55, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Does that mean the mythical bot server is down? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:13, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Yup, likely a botserver issue, since RWW is run off the botserver. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 13:20, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Back to 500s now. Nowwhat? 02:41, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

You couldn't make this up[edit]

Christine "Not a Witch" O'Donnell: I'm endorsing Mitt Romney because he's been consistent since he changed his mind. MDB (talk) 13:47, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

I'm really curious as to what is said when these figures endorse each other (I mean, Pawlenty endorsed Romney- makes me think Conservapedia is right about the stalking horse thing). I'd like to hear secret phone conversations that lead to such endorsements--User:Brxbrx/sig 14:29, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Romey endorsed O'Donnell during her Senate bid, so this is probably just twit for tat. MDB (talk) 14:54, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
'twit for tat'. I see what you did there. I prefer, however, 'tit for twat'AMassiveGay (talk) 18:23, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh, did I do that? Shucky darn, what an ironic typo... MDB (talk) 18:33, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
It's witchcraft I tell ya! Osaka Sun (talk) 19:41, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
What's she thinking with? VERY SMALL ROCKS! -- Seth Peck (talk) 19:00, 16 December 2011 (UTC)


Discuss. PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 22:16, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

It's bad. Does that count as discussion? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:20, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Where does this statistic fit in terms of what you thought the numbers were like? What sort of political actors can you see using this statistic towards what kind of ends? Do we live in a "rape culture?" If so, how did it come to be? What can we do about it? PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 22:22, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
It's not anything new or surprising. From reported incidents alone, 1 out of 15 american women have been raped, and experts have long suggested the real number is more likely between 1 in 5 and one in 10. Rape is, quite simply, normal in our society. If you include rape within marriage or relationships that women rarely ever discuss, experts suggest it could get close to 50%. A whole host of this happens in our mid teens to 30s... when we are dating; when boys and girls, men and women are learning what "no" means, how to say it. Add the culture of drugs and alcohol, and "doing her when she's down"... I've been there twice, in entirely different situations. My best friends (80's generation of college) were both drunk raped, before anyone admitted that was a "thing". (get them basically passed out, then have sex with them). I don't know what changes this, but the rates are not going down. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 22:28, 15 December 2011 (UTC) (edit con)
What sort of political actors can you see using this - sadly, there is a small by vocal aspect of fundamentalism that will discount these numbers, say they are exaggerated, or say it's a woman's role, or blame the woman. There are a host of men in power who might intentionally or accidentally brush this off as "this is what you get when you do drugs, drink, dress like a slut". Of my friends who have been raped, we don't talk about it with our families, if they even know. You have no idea how many brothers out there have no idea their sisters are victims. How many lovers don't know about a partner's past. *maybe* (i don't know) if we started saying "Pint, you need to know that this happened to me, your mom, when I was 18, and to your sister when she was 21" so you see how very real it is, maybe then we can change it?Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 22:33, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
(EC)What's more important, IMO, is what goes unreported. What's one reason for this? I just wrote an article on it. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:35, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
There was a call-in on the BBC today, and what was amazing to me was how the anti-porn, anti-violent-videogames, anti-the-patriarchy-nad-the-economic-exploitation-of-women, and a bunch of other activists each seized on this study to argue that their particular issue was the SINGLE issue at the heart of the study, and how the study for them showed how a monocausal relationship existed between their cause and the victimization of women. We should teach boys how to conduct themselves with women. No, we need to address political-economic power imbalances. No, we need to get rid of porn. No, porn can be a positive expression of female sexuality, it's about the patriarchy. No, it's all the fault of organized religion, which makes women second-class people. PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 22:48, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
There's also the pro-porn activists. (Hint: It helps to ignore the larger trend of decline in overall crime.) AFAIK, the only connections between video games and violence are very short-term, at most. Porn? Probably not. Economics? An international comparison might be useful, but the stats aren't very reliable. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 23:10, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
I'll tell you what's worse, Neb. It's not just jurys that feel that. Not so much in the case of true "stranger rapes" (which are surprisingly rare), but acquaintance, date, or relationship rapes, it's the victim her/himself that often thinks "I deserved this". your mind says "oh fuck, of course you didn't", but we all know that we are not just walking minds, adn often the heart, or "soul" for want of a better word is far more effective at defining us than the logical brain. (I did after all, invite him over; agree to dinner; start making out with him; I am afterall, married to him; he pays the bills; it's his right, etc)Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 22:52, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Cognitive dissonance, I imagine. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 23:23, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Pint - Neb and I have been talking off line about lots of stuff indirectly related to this, and one think I keep coming back to in my political/philo type writing, is that women have never broken out of being objects, into being true subjects. You are right, we are still used by whatever cause to make whatever point. the actual woman (or man, or as Neb reminds me, "other Others in our society) are not represented as humans, but as tools. It's less "my gosh, what do you Jane Doe need from me as a socity to help you deal", it's "Let's look at society via the issue of rape and subjugation of women (gays, Trans, Others). (hi, Simone - see what I did there, missy?) Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 22:56, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Excellent point, Godot. Thanks for that. PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 23:03, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh bollocks. I just wrote a long paragraph about differentiating violent predatory rape from..... other rape so as not to reduce the seriousness of the former but wishing not to offend anybody but I lost it in an edit conflict. It was brilliant and would have been up there with the Sermon on the Mount, I Have a Dream, and that 4 July speech by the President in Independence Day. Ajkgordon (talk) 23:07, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
As much as it tends to cause people to go ape shit, I do have to say I hold a similar view to what Ajkgordon is talking about. There is an absolute world of difference between "at knife point in a dark alley" rape and "I was too drunk" rape. Both wrong, but they are emphatically not the same thing (two extremes, of course, I recognise the continuum in between). The problem is that when people then say "1 in 5 women have been raped" and seem to keep the connotation that it's always the very worst possible kind, as if our society has completely crumbled into this sort of thing when it's acceptable to drag people off the street and gang rape them violently. I know some of Godot's discussions on FGM point out something similar; that most of it is fairly minor yet it's often implied that it's always the worst possible kind - again, both wrong, but conflating every instance as being the worst possible is a plain and simple exaggeration. In stronger terms it could be considered deceitful to imply this, and then use it as a "fact" to mean male circumcision can safely be ignored. Trouble is, if you espouse this sort of view openly you end up being accused of making rape a less important issue or trying to dismiss it - when in fact it's the opposite, I think we need to start highlighting the seriousness of some of these crimes and find out what the prevalence is. It's about getting as much actual information as possible. "1 in 5 women have been raped" is not as useful as a breakdown of who has suffered marital abuse, who has suffered physical violence, who experiences it as a prolonged experience, and how many have actually been snatched off the street. Because everyone talks about being safe on streets at night and carrying rape alarms, but what good is that if the vast majority of rapes don't actually involve that? You end up doing nothing but targeting a boogey-man and that solves nothing. We actually see the same with child abuse, where the newspapers have us scared of child predators on the internet, but invariably the no.1 biggest abuse risk to children are their own parents. Scarlet A.pngnarchist 02:29, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Would it surprise you if I told you there simply isn't a world of difference between the two. Other than the fear for my life, which I admit adds a bit to the tale, I'm not convinced one was worse than the other in teh way you state. My body was violated, I lost the ability to trust, I have more physical scars from one, but point in fact ADK, I have more emotional scars from the other. I'm just not convinced there is "a world of difference" between one and the other. I do know what you are trying to say, but I just don't know that it's that easy to write one off as worse. Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 02:51, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
FWIW, I think that in terms of academic/sociological reasoning it's important to see the differences between, say, "date rape" and an armed attack by a stranger, because the motivations behind those two acts might well be different, and keys to stopping those two kind of crimes are likely to differ as a result. But i don't think that making such an academic distinction needs to entail a "bad"/"less bad" quantitative-hurt-done judgement. PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 02:55, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I do think you are right about that. I also think there are many types of date rape, and many levels of reactions by the man or woman raped. Here's something, if you intentially drug me, to rape me, is that the same, criminally, as "stranger on the street?" I almost think it's worse. The level of intent is actually more disgusting to me. I've never faced it, as by the time date rape drugs were hot - well, i wasn't. (not that rape is about sex, but it CAN be).Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 03:06, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
As someone who has not been raped, I can't comment on whether there is or is not a world of difference between the two. And I, of course, respect your view from experience. However, I don't think we're talking about the world of difference from the victim's perspective (even though that's obviously the most important), rather the perspective of the public. The danger of not differentiating and using stats like 1 in 5 is either as ADK says is that it can make people think that 1 in 5 women have been dragged into a darkened alley and raped at knife point, or that the public just dismiss it all as "well they've only got themselves to blame dressed like that and getting drunk". Neither of those attitudes is helpful in advancing the issue. All this said with the utmost respect, WfD. Ajkgordon (talk) 09:50, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
As the brother of a rape victim, I no longer look at rape as anything more than the most horriffic crime imaginable. Dragged into an alley at gun point or drugged and raped? Does the differential really matter? If you apply the sociological imagination principle here, the overall conclusion to be drawn is that it says a great deal about our society when this isn't a high-priority issue. I assure you that the difference between murder and rape is that the victim of a rpae has to deal with the horrors of the rape every day for the rest of their lives, and that the punishment for rape as opposed to murder is (at least in the United States) less severe. The bastard that raped my sister got a 25 year sentence but could walk as early as 10 years. If he had murdered somebody (and probably will at some point in his pathetic life), he'd be in for a life bid. Yet, as cold as this may sound, the murder victim won't be waking up every night screaming in terror, attempt suicide time after time, take everything said about them in suspicion and hostility. As for the rape victim, well, regardless of if it was a "violent rape" or a "drugged rape," they will have these and plenty more to carry with them for the rest of their lives. Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 14:06, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
There are going to be grey areas because biology doesn't care about justice. Humans who are incapable (through drugs, illness or brain damage) of correctly distinguishing between a person and a lampshade, let alone seeking consent, are still quite capable of sex because most of it is reflex. So it's quite possible to have a scenario where biology did its thing while neither party was capable of doing complicated intellectual gymnastics like the consent dance. So there you have a rape. And if for cultural reasons one party goes away next morning whistling and the other spends six hours in the shower trying to scrub away irrevocable history, that's a terrible thing but it's tough to argue that incarcerating anybody would serve justice in such circumstances.
There is a really cheap way to make rape easier to prosecute. If you declare that all sex outside marriage is rape then only spousal rape cases need to worry about consent. Of course, in the process you criminalise most sex, but if prosecuting rape was really the priority then that's your option. (talk) 13:06, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I guess I don't understand your conclusions at all. If two people are both drinking and they end up fucking, cause that's what we do when we are drunk, then it's stupid, it's sad, but to me, it's not rape. If one person intentionally gets the other drunk, with the INTENT of having sex that he (or she, i suppose) knows the other party (male or female) does not want, then it's rape. If someone slips you a Micky, then it's rape. If someone says to a partner, "have sex now, or I walk out on you and the kids", that's domestic rape. I know why AKJ, and ADK says these are not in the same category as "stranger rape". But to me, right or wrong, part of saying "it's different" falls into the "see, that woman really got raped, and you just had a bad night of sex with someone you didn't want to have sex with". I don't see though, why your conclusion form that you need to define rape as only that which happens outside of a sanctioned relationship. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 14:17, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Legally, in some jurisdictions your conclusion would be right that intentions are vital. But this survey (quite rightly) wasn't trying to meet legal definitions, it was concerned with people's experiences. Our experience doesn't (can't) depend on other people's motives and intents, which are permanently hidden from us. The unwanted feelings of shame etc. that you've mentioned already in this thread also do not depend on other people's motives. For both individuals in the scenario I outlined the only information they had is that they don't remember consenting to anything and yet apparently they had sex. But culturally we have ensured that most men will brush this off, it may even be quite a while before it occurs to them that hey, they had unprotected sex with a partner they know little about, so they need an STI check. Whereas for women it's often going to be a very big deal, which they feel they're simultaneously responsible for and yet were unable to control. I'm not speaking as someone altogether outside of that culture. For example, suppose I see a friend laying down, apparently very drunk. If they're male, I feel as though my obligation is limited to making sure that they're not in any physical danger. So, not lying in a road, or next to an untended bonfire, not liable to choke on their own vomit or fall to their death. But if they're female, I worry about a lot more things, and most likely I will end up getting them a cab or taking them home.
You shouldn't see the "all sex outside marriage is rape" idea as a suggestion, and certainly not as a denial of marital rape - but only as a line in the sand. We decided that deliberately causing the death of other people is so serious that almost everywhere calls it murder even if you have incontrovertible evidence that the other party consented. This is occasionally inconvenient, but as a society we decided so far that we prefer things that way. If we can prove that X deliberately killed Y, we don't need great insight into the reasons, we convict them of murder. But the situation for rape is very different. We need to understand why that is, and decide whether and how it should be changed. (talk) 22:48, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Rape is sex without informed consent. That's already a line in the sand. Analogies with murder really don't work, since murder is not defined by consent and rape is. I see no reason why that should need to be changed. ЩєазєюіδWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 23:07, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
But who are you going to believe if someone says they were raped? I wouldn't support the marriage idea but maybe a sex contract. If a person has a man's semen in them and there is no sex contract, the owner of that semen is guilty of a crime (perhaps not "rape" necessarily but unlawful sex). Sex contract could have an expiration date unlike marriage. Someone could still be raped if they signed a sex contract and someone could have consensual sex without one, but at least this could shift some of the burden of proof to the accused. Those who like this system could sign something vowing to never have sex without a contract. If most people used this system, rape would be a lot more difficult to get away with. Dimm (talk) 01:01, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Have you been smoking tina? AMassiveGay (talk) 01:28, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Something wrong? Dimm (talk) 01:52, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
On second thought, I didn't write that very well. If there is no sex contract, someone has semen in them and says they were raped, then the accused would be guilty of unlawful sex. No one could bring this charge but the victim. Dimm (talk) 03:51, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Again, that seems to be missing the point, and we are still dancing around "women who act a certain way or do a certain thing makes the rape somehow their fault. You talk about a contract. Ok, you and I have a contract. You and I start making out. it gets really hot and heavy. But then you spit in my face, or fart in some nasty way, or say you love Sarah Palin for President - and I say "I don't want to go on with this. stop now". you don't stop. It's very much rape. I always need to have the right to say "stop" for any reason, at any time. If you do not stop, it is rape. I don't see why this concept is hard. It's also why I disagreed with ADK that there is much difference between being raped by a stranger and being raped by a lover. In both cases, you watch as someone else takes control over your body, holds you down, causes you to fear, and harms you. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 04:13, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
I'm looking at this as a matter of law or how a third party should react to rape charges. I mean "rape" as a crime. I would agree that if you say "stop" in no uncertain terms, and someone rapes you, that is rape. I don't agree that it is rape to say "Have sex with me or I leave you and the kids". That is more an issue about child support and coercion, but I don't think that trading sex for whatever should be illegal. The example of getting someone drunk depends on whether they are too drunk to consent.
You have the right to say "stop" at any time but how can authorities know that you said stop? One way would be if you had credible witnesses. Another way would be if the rapist admits you clearly told them to stop. A third way would be if the authorities trusted you instead of the rapist.
The sex contract requirement would not detect rape in the case where someone signs a contract with an untrustworthy person. The only way the authorities could detect all rape would be if everyone signed a contract saying they would never have sex in private or without video taping it. There probably aren't very many people who would sign such a contract. Something like this might be possible in a nudist culture that doesn't hide sex in secret places where noone else can see what happened.
I don't see where you got "women who act a certain way or do a certain thing makes the rape somehow their fault". If it is rape, it isn't their fault but that doesn't mean their accusation is enough evidence to put someone away for ten years. Dimm (talk) 06:28, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

I thought that this section was going to be about this story, but it isn't , so I'll just leave the link here anyway. Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic?Moderator 23:44, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Shocking. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 00:14, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Sadly, the military has known that, and I guess they just don't care. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 01:58, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Hey, so the "feminazis" were right all along.
Again. Osaka Sun (talk) 02:04, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Relevant. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 17:12, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I guess the military's attitude to (more or less institutional) rape is pretty similar to the Catholic Church's attitude to child-molesting priests -- i.e. hush it up, deny, & keep the victims quiet, to maintain the public image. I can only hope that enough victims come forward & create a big enough public scandal to prompt some real changes. ŴêâŝêîôîďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:11, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Neb to me, that article is just more feminist ramblings about how the world aught to work. percautions are ALWAYS a good thing, and to the extent that we don't want to blame the victim, you still should try to take percautions when you can. doesn't mean the rape didn't happen. it means if you don't want to be raped, there are things you can do. i would say the same things about avoiding being mugged, or having your wallet stolen while in Paris, and no one would accuse me of blaming the victim. Real ways to lower your changes (not remove them) of being raped: 1) never take a drink from *anyone* at a party, cept the bartender. Don't set your drink down - or get a new one. 2) walk with others when you can. an attacker is less likely to go after a group of women. 3) wear a whistle, it might help draw attention to the impending situation. When you are frightened, it's extremely hard to scream - or talk, or anything. but a whistle you can work. 3) Do your best to have a buddy system, to not leave with someone when you are inebriated. things like this actually are important to try, if you can. they will not stop all rape. a husband rapes his wife, and not one of those would prevent it. a soldier is raped by her superior and not one of those would prevent it. but hand wringing that some how you are making it worse by giving good, solid advice to lower risks is hardly a "dangerous" thing. If there are Mountain Lions in Boulder, I want to know that walking and singing (truth) will keep them away from me. how is that different from telling women some ways they can try to reduce their risks?--Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 23:44, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
That article is kind of poorly worded unless you read the links in it, I guess. I have no problems with saying "Here are the stats. Be cautious." But the linked ad basically comes across as "Drink and get raped!" I'd use a different analogy to make this point: Reporters in war zones. Male ABC reporter attacked in Bahrain? Yawn. Lara Logan assaulted in Egypt? Obviously askin' for it! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:07, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Just, wut ? a woman's walk reflects her vaginal orgasmic history[edit]

[HERE] Hamster (talk) 23:00, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Looks like they're trying to hawk that physical therapy. It's based on a self-report questionnaire, which should put your bullshit detector on high alert. There's a big difference between what people do and what they say they do, i.e. House's Law. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 23:20, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
...and within seconds dozens of girlfriends and female friends come to mind… --ʤɱ netlabelist 23:33, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Apparently this was mentioned on an episode of Manswers. Can anyone find it? Osaka Sun (talk) 23:40, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Total fucking BS. does this study take into account the fact that a woman's "vaginal orgasmic" history changes due to moods, hormones, external techniques, childbirth, time of the month, etc? I hate studies like this. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 02:01, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
This reminds me of a...not exactly an urban myth, more like I dunno, some sort of folk science, anyway, this idea in circulation in my teenage years (which were the years in which super-tight "designer jeans" were the norm among young ladies) that you could tell if a girl was a virgin or not by the shadows or lack thereof between her thighs as she walked down the street...PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 02:07, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, I can think of a few confounding variables just off the top of my head, self-report data is fun to use, I think, because what people claim to think is true can often be more telling that what is objectively measurable. The quote from Laura Bermann at the end of the article is probably closer to what is actually going on than what is being claimed further up about direct connections and therapies. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:10, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
By the way, a quick read of WP suggests that science is not in agreement if there is even such a thing as a "vaginal orgasm" vs a "clittoral" orgasm, so this entire study is based on a premise that may or may not even exist. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 02:12, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
There have been "science can't find the button" jokes for years. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 02:32, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────You know what? This study doesn't go far enough -- it needs some pop evo psych. Because the female orgasm was adapted as a sperm uptake system and vaginal orgasms are correlated with gait, this suggests that females evolved a gait that would signal that she was highly orgasmic. This would allow males to more clearly see her sashaying hips on the plains of the Savannah. And here comes a pair of those hips right now. Yabba-Dabba-Doo! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:22, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Falldownlaugh.gif Although I was immediately thinking "perhaps the odd gait acted as a pump action to draw up sperm following orgasm?" Or is that even cruder? Scarlet A.pngtheist 18:53, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Whatever works. Maybe we could draft it up and pull an evo psych Sokal hoax. Even the good EP journals publish a decent amount of bullshit. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:17, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
The whole thing kinda reminds me of phrenology. -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:59, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Some social science "research" paradigms are just about on the same level. (cough) Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:02, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Write a spoof paper? Perhaps, but I'd wonder whether you even need to do that. Set up a plausible looking think-tank website, kinda like the Social Issues Research Centre, and do some science-by-press-release instead. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 10:00, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Depends on your goal. Science-by-press-release would be more of a prank on journalists (which isn't hard to do), but getting it published in an EP journal and then revealing the hoax would both screw the journal over and invite media hype. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:50, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia Question[edit]

So I just took out a WP account this week, have been making edits, enjoying it. Why can't I find a "Recent Changes" button anywhere? PintOfStout Talk Good people drink good beer. 00:09, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia took out the link from the sidebar, presumably because there are so many edits a minute that it would be pretty useless. You can still access it by going to wp:Special:RecentChanges. Fallacy (talk) 00:16, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I see it on the sidebar when I'm not logged in, but not if I am. €₳$£ΘĪÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 00:18, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
The wikipedia RC is useless, set it at 500 and you can see 5 minutes ago. If you want to patrol for vandalism they have javascript plugins for that, otherwise ignore it. - π Moderator 03:38, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Hitchens is Dead[edit]

[1] Fallacy (talk) 05:48, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Damn, I'm late. Oh well -- I didn't see it on any other part of the site until I posted this, so it's a safe bet others didn't as well. Fallacy (talk) 05:51, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
OMG. So sad. He was my favourite writer and speaker ever. I am so depressed now. --DamoHi 05:52, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Post-9/11 Hitch was often a toss-up between genius and batshit crazy. Definitely deserves respect for the waterboarding incident, though. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 06:10, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Neb took the words right out of my mouth. Osaka Sun (talk) 06:24, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Bugger. RIP, Hitch. And if you are now meeting your Maker, I'm sure He'll be delighted to have you. If not, then He isn't worth knowing. Ajkgordon (talk) 09:35, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Right now Hitch IS PRAYING, in the HEAVENLY TEMPLE!!! Christopher Hitchens has gone to meet his maker (talk) 09:54, 16 December 2011 (UTC)


It's interesting to see how he seems to have the theists even more upset now he's dead. A remarkable accomplishment!--BobSpring is sprung! 12:03, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Goodpost.gif Lord of Reckless Noise Hooray! I'm helping! 14:08, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Hey, I'm sorry to see he's gone. I need a good debate partner sometime. Everyone back at the office always agrees with me. (I keep telling them, "I'm only infallible when I say it's ex cathedra", but they never pay attention to that. Bunchk schmucks. PopeBenedictXVI (talk) 20:21, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

It saddened me to hear of his death. Even though I disagree with him on all sorts of issues (not to say the least the question of theism), I always had some sort of fondness for him, on a personal rather than political or philosophical level. (((Zack Martin))) 01:06, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

BTW don't smoke, kids. Dimm (talk) 01:42, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Hitch was a damn good writer. I could enjoy his columns even when I vehemently disagreed. Well, maybe except for the Iraq apologias -- I stopped reading those quite a while ago. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:45, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Oh Fuck.[edit]

Please don't tell me this is happening.

I didn't expect the very worst on this. And the NDAA is supposed to be signed today. Obama, stop with this bipartisan bullshit and do what's right. Osaka Sun (talk) 10:56, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Remember, "liking facebook", and "signing petitions" doesn't do shit. Really, mass email does not, either. if you care, you need to get on the phone and call. Then hang up, go to a friend's and call again. Then while on your lunch break at work, call again. Call your senator, your house of representative and frankly, even call your state congress people. You clog up their lines, things happen. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 14:07, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Am I wrong to feel smug?[edit]

A couple of years ago we had a big power cut here following some storms. It lasted about three days which is one hell of a cut. So we bought an emergency generator.

Another gale is on its way through now and power has been down for about three hours so far. My house if the only one lit up in our neighbourhood. Am I right to feel smug or am I just being a bastard?--BobSpring is sprung! 16:54, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

I'd say both. Fallacy (talk) 17:20, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, you're enjoying the fact that your neighbors are out of power. It isn't wrong wrong, but it's definitely douchey.--User:Brxbrx/sig 17:48, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
OK, I'll feel bad instead.--BobSpring is sprung! 18:04, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I find that the overlap between "smug" and "bastard" is so large as to be completely inseparable. So yeah, probably both. Scarlet A.pngnarchist 18:17, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Also, it depends on what motivates your smug. "haha, you all said I was stupid to do this"... probably fine. but the "I can afford it and you can't and i don't care to share", bastard. --Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 18:28, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
To be fair, I did invite the two OAP's from next door over, but they said they'd rather wait it out.--BobSpring is sprung! 18:32, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
OAP? And they'll change their turn as it gets near night. :-) I always invited our elderly neighbor over when power went out, just cause I worried about her. We didn't have any more heat than she did, but at least she wasn't alone.--Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 18:35, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, it's back up now anyway. To be honest it's a tad complicated to get it going and connect it up to the mains supply - at least it is if you only set it going every year or so.--BobSpring is sprung! 18:39, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Newsflash: Santa isn't real[edit]

Teacher apologizes for exposing the Santa hoax. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:12, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

okay, you can reasonably debate whether parents should raise their kids to believe in Santa Claus. But really, it's the parents job to break the news to them. A teacher who spoils it deserves to have three spirits show up at her bed. MDB (talk) 18:21, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Okay, you can reasonably debate whether parents should raise their kids to believe in Santa Claus. But really, getting outraged and forcing a teacher to apologize for telling the fucking truth is idiotic. "Oh no, she told the truth! Teachers aren't supposed to do that!" Fucking goddamn shithead asshole morons. Fallacy (talk) 18:25, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Isn't 7 a little old to still be believing in Santa Claus? I don't know; I don't think I ever really believed in him. DickTurpis (talk) 18:29, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
@ fallacy - And you're a jerk. "truth" about things that are known myths, but are a fun part of childhood, which are harmless, etc., are not a teacher's job to break. It's not about facts, it's about what a child believes, and what right you have to say that they should not believe that. i would slap any teacher who said my child's dog isn't in heaven, or that there is no santa. The kid will wake up soon enough to the fact that life is not always easy.--Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 18:31, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Dick, most kids start to question Santa as they get to school, so anywhere between 5 and 8. by the time you're 8 or 9, you are pretty ridiculed if you believe, but at 7? It's pretty much up in the air. depends on how evil your siblings are to be breaking your little kid heart by telling you the facts. ha. Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 18:33, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
A couple of weeks back I looked through a bunch of forum threads that came up when you Googled "how old were you when you stopped believing in Santa?" (why? Long story, trust me...) and it seems 7 or 8 is the average age. That said, I once knew an 11 year old who still believed in him, and some of the online discussions mentioned 13 year olds... Balaam (talk) 19:48, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
(EC) Well, I guess you're sort-of right. What this teacher should have done was to guide them towards skeptical thought about Santa Claus and similar myths instead of simply saying "Santa doesn't exist" (which I assume she did, although the article doesn't really give any specifics). And before you say that's the parents' job: school isn't just for memorizing fact, it's also (supposed to be) about learning how to think. Parents do not 'own' their children, and do not have complete control over what they can learn. Fallacy (talk) 18:38, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I've been playing with the idea that raising kids to believe in Santa would be a good lesson in the power of the Big Lie. Though since most people don't question that other bearded fellow, that probably disproves my hypothesis. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 18:41, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Probably because most kids aren't pushed to be skeptical enough. Their parents tell them Santa's real, and then a few years later, flatly tell them he doesn't exist (or their peers do). What they should be doing, in my opinion, is telling them he exists, and then coax them to think critically and come to their own conclusion. They'll learn that they can't trust everything they're told, even from their own parents, and to think skeptically. Fallacy (talk) 18:47, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Also they should be coaxed to think skeptically about matters of religion, and everything else for that matter. Fallacy (talk) 18:52, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Good post! I was gonna say that. -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:57, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Mh, the first years of my life, I was told the Christkind would bring some of my presents (my mother actually went through the trouble of ringing the door bell - which is quite a thing to do if you live on the fourth floor and there's no elevator). I think with four I began to doubt it, turned the TV mute and recognized my fathers walking rythms bringing three presents, I only saw three presents (my parents also gave presents to each other, it was not only to the kids) that evening. The fact that my mother accidently always walked down when "the Christkind came" to "get the mail" really did quite support the lie. After a year I was so sure that when my father did it again, I walked out of the room when he was halfway done. "Hey, you should have stayed in the room!" "Oh stop kidding me. There's no Christkind. You buy the presents and put them under the tree. I just wanna get something to eat." I think that what happens to parents teach their children way to fast to think critically.
Depending on the woman I'm having them with, my children will either celebrate Christmas without the lie or not at all, after all it could be that I'll marry a muslima. And I don't think that's a bad thing; as a child I'd rather see that my parents went through hours and hours of trouble to find just the right present or put money away for a while, then believe that some magical being that comes once a year to drop some stuff and not even talk to me (while maybe even exploiting innocent elves in a place that get shitfucking cold in winter) brings me and all the other children in the world in one night all the presents. I think the love that is represented in that present is much more magical than any of these weird stories.
And to that teacher's story: Apologize? Yes. Fire? No fucking way, here's the next lesson in life: teachers are only humans too. --ʤɱ heretic 19:34, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I missed that they fired her. that *is* wrong. Anyhow, Fallacy, you are dead on. the reason kids stop thinking santa is real, is cause they start doing basic critical thinking. So why not ask them to question EVERYTHING then. Science, Math, Religion, the idea that Girls have cooties, etc. Teach them so they can learn what science is, what fantasy is, and what "lies" are. Teach them basis of how to deal with advertisments, and how things are sold to them. They are starting to question life, so help them! (and there's nothing wrong with believing in a God, but can we get past this literal truth of the bible crap? cause none of it makes any fucking sense!) Kids will ask "how is it possible Noah put that many animals on a boat? How did he feed them. sadly, they believe the Sunday School Teacher who says "magic".--Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 20:30, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

My brother is 16 years old and still believes in Santa. We aren't aloud to break the news to him because it is "cute". Nowwhat? 22:18, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

A four-year-old believing in Santa is cute. A sixteen-year-old believing in Santa is unsettling. Fallacy (talk) 22:37, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
^^ what he (or she) said ^^--Pink mowse.pngGodotI live in the Infinite monkey cage 23:26, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
We had to break the easter bunny to him this year. He locked himself in his room for a few hours. He is obsessed with Christmas, he creates elaborate presentations, writes letters to Santa, and keeps the Norad page up. He uses Santa in debates as proof of the existence of magic. Nowwhat? 00:13, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
This is probably going to sound unbelievably bad, but considering the background of your family, that isn't really all that suprising… --ʤɱ libertarian 01:33, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
You ain't just trollin' is ya? I mean, I figured Santa out by myself at about 4 or 5 so I'm a bit biased as to the cut-off age, but that's just wrong. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:21, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
No. We go through incredibly elaborate measures to reinforce the belief, including hiring neighbors to ring bells outside his window and packing gifts for when we have Christmas on vacation. The only reason we had to break the easter bunny was we were aboard a boat on Easter and thus unable to hide the eggs. Nowwhat? 02:26, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
That's just... wrong. What the fuck is up with your family? Fallacy (talk) 02:28, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
I'll reiterate my previous advice: Move. Far away. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:32, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
(EC) Stop flaunting your childhood skepticism at us. >:c Fallacy (talk) 02:27, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Ty. Just remind me to never be around your brother when we're on the subject on Christmas/Santa. Or, just give me something to nom on. Actually, I'll just distract myself with the dog.--Dumpling (talk) 04:23, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Even with all the measures your family goes through to keep him ignorant, I still find it very hard to believe he's 16 and still honestly believes in Santa. Is he not allowed to go to school, watch TV, or use the internet? Sam Tally-ho! 04:50, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
@Ty: Is this the same brother that's an Objectivist? 'Cause that'd be some sweet, sweet irony right there. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 04:59, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
He's 16. And still believes in Santa. He goes to school. They don't have a tv (only to watch VHS/DVDS---no cable)...but they do have internet. -shrug- I don't know either. And Yes Stabby. The same and only brother he has. Haha. It is rather ironic, isn't it?--Dumpling (talk) 05:27, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Ty might have one of the shittiest families ever. Osaka Sun (talk) 08:38, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Maybe. I'm not one to personally judge them, though they can judge me all they like. I just like to go over and play with the animals. They're awesome.--Dumpling (talk) 08:47, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh dear. Balaam (talk) 12:30, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
OH MY! O____O--Dumpling (talk) 19:08, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Santa isn't real, but at least Satan is real. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 08:32, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

A little wikiproject[edit]

I think we should do a round up of all the evil little shit "Christians" who are doing the Hitchens is in hELL thing right now. A nice little expose of just what sort of people they really are. How many can we find? I'll start us off with an easy one: --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 19:00, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

  1. Ray Comfort does the ghoul thing.
  2. Bill Bennett says Hitchens is in for a big surprise. -- Seth Peck (talk) 19:40, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  3. Rick Warren cashes in.
  4. Albert Mohler gets in on the act.
  5. Bryan Fischer chimes in.
Trust that sheep-fucker Comfort to indulge in the obligatory death bed conversion speculation. MtDPinko Scum 01:18, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
If you think this is bad right now with Hitchens, wait when Dawkins dies. He is 70, you know. Osaka Sun (talk) 01:36, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh god. It'll be like the Michael Jackson death of the religion/atheism subculture. Fallacy (talk) 02:47, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Good point, as much as I do like, perhaps even admire if I want to use stronger words, Dawkins, some of his fan-base are a little... well you know, they make Trekkers look sane. Scarlet A.pngtheist 09:53, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
The Dawkinistas are insufferable. MtDPinko Scum 10:18, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Cyriak, you crazy bastard.[edit]

What the hell is he smoking? Osaka Sun (talk) 02:36, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Subscribed. Fallacy (talk) 02:46, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Uh.....huh. That was weird. --Veni Vidi.png Feci.png 19:26, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Aren't there any decent political quizzes out there?[edit]

You know, since the more popular ones are misleading/biased as hell.

We should keep a list of some for reference. Osaka Sun (talk) 06:47, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Here's one. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 07:05, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Is it wrong that I have the most negative MO out of that list? I also just found this test, not that bad. Osaka Sun (talk) 07:35, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
So I'm a social democrat. I was hoping for something more interesting... Peter talk, or type, or whatever... 07:45, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Same here. Though I prefer "democratic socialist". --MtDPinko Scum 07:50, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Fucking Judean People's Front... Scarlet A.pngd hominem 09:50, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Political quizzes usually make me look too moderate as the more extreme positions cancel out. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:11, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
That quiz on Selectsmart says I'm an anarcho-capitalist. The Political Compass says I'm in the economic center-left and social libertarian quadrant. The Moral Matrix, which iirc is based on George Lakoff's snake oil, says I'm a centrist, leaning conservative. The obvious conclusion: burn all political quizzes. The best political quiz I ever saw, damned if I can find it now, was a decade or so ago and I think it was "World's Most Accurate Political Quiz". The last question was: "Anyone who disagrees with my political views is just like", and the possible answers were a. Adolf Hitler, b. Adolf Hitler, and c. Adolf Hitler. Secret Squirrel (talk) 21:49, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
Now now, there are a lot of decent political quizzes out there. Of course they're not perfect, especially if you have 'out there' views, but I find that they're pretty good. And I'm a pretty consistent across them: a socialist democrat/democratic socialist/some other type of (socialist/liberal). Fallacy (talk) 03:00, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

Hey, Russia![edit]

So we've come to known you as beating your own people down as soon as they voice an opinion of their own, you've baned human rights activists for instigating "homosexual propaganda", but calling a holy scripture of a religion that is older than yourself extremist because [it] is evil and not conforming to Christian religious view is just...

Are we sure Russia isn't a parodist country? --ʤɱ kant 12:48, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

The asymmetry of bullshit[edit]

Good article on what I like to call the "asymmetry of bullshit," but Sanchez uses the term "one-way hash argument." I still like my term better. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:06, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Good article indeed. This is, of course, the reason why live debates are usually meaningless and have little to no bearing on the truth of the matter. Tetronian you're clueless 02:03, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

Ubuntu help[edit]

I posted about this on the NooB Ubuntu board, but it's not getting much love. I have a portable hard drive that I formatted this afternoon, and now none of my compys can see it. It's connected, the light is on, it's spinning but not making any ugly noises, and it's getting as warm as it usually does. Can anybody help troubleshoot this with me? PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 03:20, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Is it listed in /dev? Peter Urist for Mod! 03:22, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
No sir. Nor is it the disc utility. Also, remember the part about me being a noob. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 03:25, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
You're not the only one, then. What did you format it to, and with what? Peter Urist for Mod! 03:29, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
with the same machine I want to open it with (10.04), to FAT. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 03:35, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
"Compys"? If you multiple computers and none of them can see it, it might be a problem with the drive itself. Either that or Ubuntu is being a failure. Do you have any other operating systems you can boot into to see if it works there? Flubbertalk to me :D|see my shit 03:40, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
I had a similar occurrence a few months ago. Try: "Turn it off & back on again" - sorry but it worked for me. Plug it in before you switch on. Or not ... Scream!! (talk) 03:45, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Tried it on Mrs. Stout's Mac, to no avail. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 04:00, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Maybe try reformatting it again, or something? Jiggling the input/output? Kicking it? Fuckertalk to me :D|see my shit 04:03, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Can't reformat it if the machine doesn't see it. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 04:04, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
How much did it cost? Flinttalk to me :D|see my shit 04:09, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Eighty bucks or so. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 04:13, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Unplug it then plug it in, wait about 30 seconds, then post the output of dmesg | tail -n 20 -- Nx / talk 04:12, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Fuck you and your fancy terminal commands -- everyone knows that when technology fails, you should kick it. Fuckertalk to me :D|see my shit 04:14, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

[20277.068053] scsi 18:0:0:0: Direct-Access Seagate Backup 0130 PQ: 0 ANSI: 4
[20277.068135] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068214] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068290] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068371] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068457] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068555] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068658] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.068762] scsi: killing requests for dead queue
[20277.069156] sd 18:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg2 type 0
[20277.070276] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] 488397168 512-byte logical blocks: (250 GB/232 GiB)
[20277.073569] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] Write Protect is off
[20277.073577] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] Mode Sense: 2f 08 00 00
[20277.073582] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] Assuming drive cache: write through
[20277.076514] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] Assuming drive cache: write through
[20277.076526] sdb: sdb1
[20277.202431] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] Assuming drive cache: write through
[20277.202442] sd 18:0:0:0: [sdb] Attached SCSI disk
[20291.978457] usb 1-1.2: USB disconnect, address 44
[20292.016858] scsi: killing requests for dead queue

PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 04:16, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Wait, did you disconnect it at the end there? -- Nx / talk 04:23, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Nope--still connected. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 04:24, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Try sudo fdisk -l, it should show sdb1, and lsusb. Did it work with the same computer, same usb port, same everything before? Does it have an external power adapter or is it usb-powered? -- Nx / talk 04:29, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
fdisk only gives the sda drives. lsub gives:
Bus 002 Device 006: ID 413c:8162 Dell Computer Corp.
Bus 002 Device 005: ID 413c:8161 Dell Computer Corp.
Bus 002 Device 004: ID 0a5c:4500 Broadcom Corp. BCM2046B1 USB 2.0 Hub (part of BCM2046 Bluetooth)
Bus 002 Device 003: ID 046d:c51b Logitech, Inc. V220 Cordless Optical Mouse for Notebooks
Bus 002 Device 002: ID 8087:0020
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
Bus 001 Device 041: ID 03f0:9311 Hewlett-Packard
Bus 001 Device 040: ID 05e3:0608 Genesys Logic, Inc. USB-2.0 4-Port HUB
Bus 001 Device 003: ID 0c45:6480 Microdia
Bus 001 Device 002: ID 8087:0020
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub

USB-powered, same everything. Like I said above, it's getting power--lights up, spins, gets warm....PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 04:34, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

Well, I dunno. I didn't know you could bork an external hard drive with a format so bad that it disconnects 15 seconds after you plug it in. If you can get to a windows machine you could try the manufacturer's diagnostic/repair tools. Or you could hit it with a hammer. -- Nx / talk 07:27, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
NO! You kick it! NOT hit it with a hammer!! GOD, GET IT RIGHT. Fuckertalk to me :D|see my shit 07:29, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
OK, assuming the disconnect message isn't somehow a coincidence (e.g. you didn't unplug a flash drive midway through capturing this info for us), it means that the USB link between the computer and the USB enclosure abruptly failed. There are a few reasons that might happen. The very simplest is a loose connection. If the cable is in good condition (not chewed or repeatedly slammed in a door or something) and properly plugged in it's almost certainly not that. Is this a DIY enclosure (did you buy the drive and enclosure separately?) if so it's quite possible you assembled it poorly. If not, it's possible some desperately poor 12yo in a factory somewhere assembled it poorly. I'm sure she'll be whipped for it when you return the device as faulty. Moving on, it's possible that the drive was always borderline on power, USB bus power is only designed for about 2.5W and plenty of drives need 5W or more, this would be particularly likely for DIY enclosures and for 3.5" (rather than 2.5") drives. When power is borderline, the drain from the drive motors may cause the USB signal power to drop, disconnecting everything. If there's an "optional" power cable, try using it. Finally there's a possibility the drive is damaged. Because the USB enclosure electronics are between the computer and the drive, they can consume any reported errors (or crash and drop offline as may be happening here) without you seeing anything on the screen. Connecting the drive directly to the computer (via an IDE or SATA connector as appropriate) would make it possible to see the raw errors if this is happening. If your drive is reporting low-level errors it is junk, recover anything that's not backed up if you can, then dispose of it as Waste Electronics or ask for warranty replacement as appropriate. (talk) 09:20, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Thanks NX and BON for the help. It's a fairly-new LaCie drive. I'll just return it to Amazon. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 14:10, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Does it run off only the USB power or does it have a separate power adapter? You're really not going to get enough power through USB-only to run a mechanical hard disk. But yeah, flaky disk, return - David Gerard (talk) 14:56, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
It came with a 1-prong USB cable, but I also tried it with a 2-pronger. No dice. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 14:58, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
.02: Like others said, it could be power. Connect it to an external self powered USB hub if u have one to see if that can supply the juice. TheCheatI run on alcohol 18:33, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
Maybe uses a large sector size and your format software doesn't support it? Dimm (talk) 04:52, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
They abandoned the idea of making consumer equipment that logically has different sized (ie not 512 byte) sectors. Too incompatible. For consumer hardware (which a LaCie drive certainly is) you can't damage them by treating them as 512 byte sector drives, you just get worse performance. Internally some crazy shenanigans is needed to make this work with drives that have 4096 byte physical sectors (actually more like 4112 or something for reasons we needn't get into here), but that's the price you pay for selling to consumers. (talk) 07:27, 30 December 2011 (UTC)


I've been meaning to ask, since I'm still kind of learning the ropes here, what exactly are the rules regarding the writing of the essay pages? --Veni Vidi.png Feci.png 21:46, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

You write it in essayspace (put Essay: in front of the title), slap {{Essay|User:I came, I saw, I shat]]}} on top, or {{EssaynonCC|User:I came, I saw, I shat]]}} if you don't want it released under Cc-by-sa 3.0, other users comment on the talk page, and that's about it. -- Nx / talk 21:55, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
No spam, no libel, no copyright violation, no hate speech. ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:19, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
What exactly is Cc-by-sa 3.0? Sam Tally-ho! 22:40, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
See here. Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic?Moderator 22:46, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Some editor just had the best day of his career[edit]

'Cause he got to write this headline. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 02:13, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

If only all puns in newspaper headlines could be like that. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:18, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Oh dear god. Osaka Sun (talk) 02:19, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Romney on top, Gingrich fading & Santorum rising. Newt's enjoying it I'm sure, but eww. The headlines continue. As he surges in Iowa, Rick Santorum rips Ron Paul. No comment. Secret Squirrel (talk) 03:12, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
...do these people use the Internet, ever? Someone will record these. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:15, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Apparently he retweeted it...[2] Peter Urist for Mod! 04:49, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
The WaPo has a noted tendency for punny headlines, especially in the Style Section. A classic was for an article about the people who work overnight at a local shopping center during the holiday season: "A Mall and the Night Visitors". MDB (talk) 18:23, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Santorum is probably bubbly with excitement over his lead. He's probably already getting his concession speech prepared! -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:33, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

2011 RationalWiki Awards nominations[edit]

Nominations for the 2011 RationalWiki Awards are now open at RWW. There's also a copy of the page in my userspace in case all dozen of you crash the RWW server again. Hans Johnson as in "keep ya hans off my" (cover your eyes!) 12:24, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Are these like the previous nominations? You know, the ones that were cool, before Brxbrx felt the need to employ an attention getting device? --PsyGremlinPraat! 12:37, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Superjosh nominated brx for all the awards, brx is totally innocent on this one. --ʤɱ soviet 18:47, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, seriously. I resent taking any flak for that.--User:Brxbrx/sig 23:21, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
The RW Awards are cool again. Hans Johnson as in "keep ya hans off my" (cover your eyes!) 12:58, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
No they're not. Scream!! (talk) 18:08, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Only reason I would vote, is i miss Kels and Susan, and it's one way to say that. :-) Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 18:50, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

"Osaka Sun: Painfully noobish, but otherwise productive."

I'm okay with that. :P Osaka Sun (talk) 21:56, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Psh, at least you got a statement. :-) Sam Tally-ho! 22:43, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Doctors Without Borders Shooting[edit]

Two Doctors Without Borders workers killed in Mogadishu.

Okay, this was apparently a case of a disgruntled employee, and not someone going after Doctors Without Borders because of the work they do.

But still... killing people who work for Doctors Without Borders... if there's hell, you'll go there for that. MDB (talk) 14:08, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Perry: Abortion allowed if woman's life at risk[edit]

Well gosh, how fucking nice of you. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 15:08, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

I'd say that imposing an unwanted child upon a woman is a risky notion for the life of both the woman and the child. -- Seth Peck (talk) 17:48, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
I'd think any reasonable Republican would allow abortion if the mother's life is at risk. I'm surprised Rick Perry agrees too!--Colonel Sanders (talk) 17:55, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
The quote is specifically in response to his blatant claim that rape and incest are NOT a justification for abortion. Yeah... excellent. A man you may or may not know, but who you didn't want to have sex with, "puts a baby in you" and that baby's life is worth more than your sanity! excellent! Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 18:15, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Colonel, if you find a reasonable Republican on your Diogenic quest, let me know so I can stop looking. (though, in truth, I know many GOP members who are very pro-woman/pro-choice, but they are seriously lacking in other reasonable social and economic issues). -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:22, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Seth, what does "reasonable" mean to you? I know many reasonable repblicans, (quite a few who are dual canada/us citizens) who see large government as a problem; prefer local solutions to most problems, are not flatly anti-tax, do not want to stop taxing the rich, etc. They are a minority, but they do exist... and all of them feel fully abandoned by the party since roughly 9-11.Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 18:43, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, in general, I would say a reasonable Republican is one who fits most of your description, with the added concept of actually upholding the tenants of Republicanism (technically speaking, I would be a Republican if it weren't for their horrid social/religion-pandering/corporation-loving agendae--I think that's the ultimate hypocrisy, that most Republican politicians don't uphold classic Republican values). But I think that it's cute that you think I was seriously looking for one ;) -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:57, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
I think the classic Taft Republicans would be considered reasonable. But the evangelical/social-values oriented like Bachmann, Santorum, etc, are really giving the party the image it has today.--Colonel Sanders (talk) 18:59, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
"When you say "radical right" today, I think of these moneymaking ventures by fellows like Pat Robertson and others who are trying to take the Republican Party away from the Republican Party, and make a religious organization out of it. If that ever happens, kiss politics goodbye." -Mr. Conservative Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:01, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
It has to be about four years now that I followed a discussion on abortion (not the question if it should be legal, but if it should be done) in two back-to-back biology "lessons" that pretty much only involved girls. I came out of the room then thinking that the opinion of men on this topic should be valued less, and maybe men should just completely shut the fuck up about the topic if it isn't their child. I still think this is the best tactic for any men on this topic. --ʤɱ pervert 19:05, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, I would be completely in favor of legalized and funded abortion, but I guess since I'm a child-less man I should just shut the fuck up. Flubbertalk to me :D|see my shit 19:12, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
It's more that there are so many things involved that men can hardly understand the emotional weight of such a thing. Like, to make a bad example, somebody that never experienced a war talking about the emotional weight of war victims and having the balls to make a judgement on that. --ʤɱ heretic 19:33, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Hell, i'm not even against the idea that there should not be tax funded payments of "on demand" (as it were) abortions; but if that is the case, we should make sure that it's affordable, which with all the red tape and insurance bonds have to be carried by centers who do any abortion, isn't possible. Ru-486, the "abortion pill" runs 200-400 bucks in the US. In France, you can get it for about 30 euro. I think the euro is roughly 1.75$ to one €, so 50-60 bucks? Do that, then I don't even care that they aren't funded. though **any** abortion related to health of the woman or the child should be 100% funded by insurance or state. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 19:23, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
One more rant - if you don't want the state to fund abortions, then sex education must be REQUIRED, condoms must be FREE AT SCHOOLS AND UNIVERSITY, and birth control should be covered by all state and insurance programs. THATS how you prevent abortions, not by making them illegal or not funding them. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 19:24, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
But: SEX IS EVIL --ʤɱ pervert 19:33, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

VAGINA. Onozomg.gif Osaka Sun (talk) 22:34, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

I think we're going to have to dismiss the claim of Zooey Deschanel as a "talentless hipster"[edit]

New viral video. Based on a discussion we had a couple of weeks ago...that I did not expect. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:28, 31 December 2011 (UTC)

Wait, you mean we haven't already? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:32, 31 December 2011 (UTC)
I saw the video on a friend's FB page; it was my first exposure to Ms. Deschanel and her work. She plays the ukelele tolerably well (she's no Jake Shimabukuro, but she keeps decent time and plays some nice chords) and her singing voice isn't horrible. Why the hate? PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 03:37, 31 December 2011 (UTC)
I liek Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Eh's cool--User:Brxbrx/sig 03:41, 31 December 2011 (UTC)
See MPDG (Warning: TV Tropes link). Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:42, 31 December 2011 (UTC)
She's breaking the stereotype, that's for sure. I also saw her during the Elf re-run on Christmas, had no idea she starred in that. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:44, 31 December 2011 (UTC)

Update; I just realized that I misread teh headline. OS thinks she's NOT a "talentless hipster." My bad. so then other people think she is? Does she have any CDs/songs on the radio? I'm confused--she was in something called "Elf"? Is that a movie/tv show? She's an actress? PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 03:56, 31 December 2011 (UTC)

She's the current queen of the hipster set, churning out MPDG rom-coms and twee indie-folk-pop. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:04, 31 December 2011 (UTC)
That's my mistake, sorry. She still has to break out of that overhyped mold that's all too common nowadays, but I'm convinced now there's something good there. Neb will probably disagree with me. Osaka Sun (talk) 04:11, 31 December 2011 (UTC)

Geek question about programming[edit]

As there are one or two computer geeks enthusiasts on here, I thought this would be a good place to ask. What programming language should I learn? As that is a ridiculously vague question, allow me to add a little detail:
I have no education in computer science or owt like. When I was a kid I programmed Commodore64 BASIC and a bit of assembler. I am an electronic technician and work a lot with PLCs, mainly Siemens Step7 where most of the code is in Function Block Diagram or Statement List (which is pretty much assembler), I'm pretty good with this stuff if I do say so myself. Over the last year I have taught myself how to write Bash scripts (primarily for clickbotting CP), I have enjoyed this and I'm quite pleased that for someone completely self-taught my scripts what I want them to do (although I'm sure there are far better or "more correct" ways than I've bashed (pardon the pun) out. I run Ubuntu Linux.
I am wanting to start playing with Dallas/Maxim 1-wire devices, my first effort will be an automated irrigation system for my greenhouse (just for fun!) and I reckon bash scripts will be fine for this initially, using the One Wire File System (OWFS.org) with which everything is treated as a file. Due to my PLC experience, my programming instincts are cyclic PLC-type style, (read the inputs, do some processing, write the outputs, do it again), even my Bash scripts are like this.
Now then, as I want to play further with home automation using the OWFS, I need to learn something more suitable than Bash, I initially thought C, but the sites I've found all stress C++. So I think I can boil my questions down to:

  • How easy is it to learn C / C++?
  • Are either of them suitable for what I want to achieve?
  • As I understand it most things for Linux are written in C, is it OK to learn C++ given that I will be using Linux? Does the built in compiler handle C++ also?
  • Has anybody bothered reading all this shit?

Thanks and apologies! DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 03:05, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

Well, I can answer the last question...
As for the first, C/C++ isn't all that bad, at least with prior programming knowledge. Peter talk, or type, or whatever... 03:41, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
If all you have to do is read and write to files, Python might be more suited to your task than C; it is a scripting language, but much more powerful than Bourne shell scripts. The "built-in compiler" (gcc) handles both C and C++. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:47, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
C is very easy to learn. You can pick up enough to get by in about a week of playing around. C also gives you a head start on C++, since the basic grammar and control structures are the same. However, there's a lot to C++ that you'll probably never learn and is pretty much irrelevant to most of what you want to do. If you're doing home automation stuff, you're probably going to end up writing C for small microcontroller type devices. In most cases, C will be the only option.
The compiler usually shipped with Linux is GCC, which includes both a C compiler and a C++ compiler (and a java compiler, and a fortran compiler, and an...)
My personal take would be to learn C first. C++ has so much baggage from the standard template library and the addition of references that you can easily miss out on the key thing to learn when you're new to programming. You need to understand pointers and how memory is managed, and C is simplistic enough that you're pretty much forced to do that. Once you have a decent handle on C, it may be a good idea to learn C++ so you can structure your programs more effectively, but C provides a decent foundation to build on. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 07:10, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Oooh, I'm glad this section came up. I want to create a program that'll require a graphical output. I learned a bit of C++ years ago but only to read/write to text files. I know a lot of VBA but that's no good for what I want to do. Basically I want to create a simple game that involves orbital mechanics... so it needs to have a graphical output that displays a sprite (or something) orbiting other sprites (or something). Would C++ be optimum? ONE / TALK 17:50, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
For that sort of thing, language is pretty unimportant. C++ would be fine, if that's what you know. I'd heartily recommend looking in to SDL for your sprite drawing needs. It's a nice, platform agnostic drawing library designed for just that sort of task. It's very easy to get started, and it has bindings for just about every programming language under the sun. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 19:10, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Flash would be better for that (also because it allows you to make a browser game). ActionScript 2 is a pain in the ass if you don't have Adobe Flash, but fortunately with ActionScript 3 the situation is much better. Get FlashDevelop, use tweener for simple animations, or flixel if you need a whole lot of game-related stuff. haxe is also an interesting language, it's similar to ActionScript 3, but it allows you to compile your program to flash or to c++. FlashDevelop supports haxe too. -- Nx / talk 19:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Thanks Nx. I suspect Flash would be best... I'll look into that :D ONE / TALK 11:27, 25 December 2011 (UTC)
Regarding OP's questions
  • How easy is it to learn C / C++: C is easy, especially if you know some assembler, because it was originally meant to be something like a portable assembler. A subset of C++ (classes, operator overloading, basic usage of templates) is slightly harder but also manageable. C++ generic programming and metaprogramming using templates is hard.
  • Are either of them suitable for what I want to achieve: probably yes, but if you are not going to do anything that requires a lot of computing power, consider using Python instead. It is far more expressive, so you end up writing much less lines of code to do the same thing.
  • As I understand it most things for Linux are written in C: Yes, but many things are also written in Python and Bash script.
  • is it OK to learn C++ given that I will be using Linux?: yes, and it's a lot less annoying than doing this in Windows. I usually do without an IDE, just a terminal window and an editor (perhaps with an integrated file browser).
  • Does the built in compiler handle C++ also: Yes, it's called g++
--Tweenk (talk) 03:18, 25 December 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the responses. I will look in to Python, as what I want to do doesn't need much processing power at all (read a bunch of sensors, when x happens do y etc). How much easier would it be for me to learn Python as opposed to C/C++? If C/C++ isn't that much harder then I would rather go that way as I could potentially do much more with it in the future (I have a pipe-dream of designing my own industrial automation / SCADA system one day), I also like the idea of using a complied rather than interpreted language. One more question: Is C++ the kind of language where I could quickly get to grips with the basics and start doing stuff, then learn more complex things as and when I need them (as I did with Bash)? PS. The reason I'm talking pish like this at xmas time is because I'm in the middle of the North Sea, rather than being a sad friendless bastard) DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 04:22, 25 December 2011 (UTC)
visit www.pythom.org download the python version you like and grab the manuals. Apart from the annoying indentation it seems a lot like basic to ne. I am not sure how you go about reading sensors in python or c++ unless they have a driver. You can get microsoft C++ 2008 download free from their website with some demo code and tutorials. (talk) 16:22, 25 December 2011 (UTC)
I second starting with C. Once you know basic computer science proceed to learn C++/Qt for graphical things. -- (talk) 22:40, 25 December 2011 (UTC)
Right, decision made. I'm going to learn C. I've been reading an online tutorial and it doesn't seem as daunting as I'd imagined. Thanks for the advice chaps. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 07:31, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
Yes, C is exceptionally easy to learn. You can pick up more or less everything there is to know about the language, barring esoteric implementation issues, in about a week. However, that's not a terribly good tutorial. This one is about the best and most comprehensive I can find online. If you're really enthusiastic, you could buy the K&R book, but these days it seems wildly expensive on Amazon. I guess they're doing small print runs. Really ought to be a cheapo/free ebook of that.
One thing that almost no tutorial I can find online covers and is essential to learn is how to structure your program once you've got to the point you want more than one file. Even the courseware I linked to covers it fairly poorly. If you need any help, just post here and I'll point you in the right direction. Once you get to the stage that you want to distribute what you've written to other people the real fun begins. Then you have to start learning the evil that is autoconf. That shit sends shivers up my spine, and it's a whole other programming language to itself (m4.) --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 12:15, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
Cheers Jeeves. I have started reading the tutorial you linked to, however I don't find it as easy to understand as the one I was using. I think your one is a bit too advanced for a beginner without a computer science degree or knowledge of similar languages. What in particular is not so good about the tutorial I linked too? I reckon I will stick with ploughing through the first one, and use your one as a reference for specific things. (Does your one really mean ` ' when it says it (ie backtick space single quote) rather than ' ', or is it just the way the text is displayed on the page) DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 23:20, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
The double quote thing as collections of backticks and single quotes is an artifact of these being written in LaTeX and translated to HTML later. It's supposed to be more typographically correct I suppose, but it doesn't really help when it's code being represented. Just read double quotes wherever you see it.
By all means continue to follow along with the first tutorial, but keep in mind what you're being told there is very incomplete and often a half-truth. For example, in the section on file handling it glosses over errors in opening files in one paragraph and never demonstrates the proper code (in fact demonstrating improper code), and certainly never mentions how you could find out what went wrong if fopen returns NULL. Its introduction to pointers is pretty much useless, you could come out knowing about as little as you went in, and certainly knowing nothing about how to manipulate them. Its discussion of using malloc to allocate heap space if both very incomplete and pretty much only safe if the only compiler you'll ever use is gcc in C mode. Anything else and your compiler will spit various angry messages ranging from "Warning: implicit type conversion from 'void*' to 'char*' at line..." to "Error: invalid conversion from 'void*' to 'char*'" and you'll be none the wiser as to why. They certainly never tell you to check your returns from malloc for NULL, or under what circumstances that would happen. The root problem is that it never discuses with you the prototype of the function you're about to use (nor indeed tells you what a prototype is, which is also a problem) so you don't come out knowing in any real sense what a function does beyond the trivial cases they describe. Maybe they intend you to go read the man page or something.
You need to be aware that the code it is telling to produce, while it will work, is wrong in that it only works in a very safe, controlled environment. Perhaps it's not a bad thing to get you started, as long as you keep in mind that you're going to have to learn good coding habits elsewhere. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 08:11, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm, I see what you mean Jeeves. I've come to the end of that tutorial already (just reading, not actually done anything yet) and even I can tell it's horrendously incomplete. Could you recommend a tutorial that's more pitched at beginners than your link, but not as shit as that little one I've just read please? The problem with being a beginner (at anything) and looking for info is that you have no idea if what you're reading is any good or not! DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 20:10, 27 December 2011 (UTC)

Well, I've been looking around for something that has the magic combination of a) being easy to understand, b) being reasonably comprehensive, c) being for the most part correct, and d) having exercises so the reader can follow along at home. Seems like I'm asking for unicorn farts. You'd think if there's one thing the internet could deliver other than porn it'd be teaching you to write C. Apparently not. You could have a go with this one. It devolves later in to a lazy collection of man pages which isn't too helpful, and there's no exercises to really hammer home what it's trying to teach, but what there is seems to me at least to be easy to follow and correct.

I guess in the end there's no substitute for doing to really learn this stuff. There's only so much reading shit from files and printing it to stdout you can take before you're going to hit a wall. My advice would be to set yourself a little project and try and complete it. You may eventually have to throw whatever you produce in the bin and start over as you learn more, but you'll certainly be learning. You can always prod me here if you've got a problem you don't know how to begin to solve and I can point you in the right direction. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 23:08, 27 December 2011 (UTC)

Hmm, how does K&R fail your criteria? That's easy to understand (assuming you can already program a computer and so don't need the rudiments explained) and it's as comprehensive as any book short of the ISO standard itself. I've yet to find any notable mistakes and the initial chapters begin with code samples and explain them, then offer exercises and slowly build up to solving large problems a step at a time. Yes, it's expensive, but it's still good value. You get a language tutorial, an authoritative reference guide, and an example of masterpiece level technical writing in one slim book.
If the issue is a need for more exercises generally, check out Project Euler. If there are specific questions outside the language (covered by K&R) and the standard libraries (for which the manual pages supplied should be of assistance) then you may need to find a source specific to your topic. (talk) 03:48, 28 December 2011 (UTC)
It fails by failing, barring piracy anyway, to be on the internets. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 08:48, 28 December 2011 (UTC)
Just type the c programming language in the box at http://bib.tiera.ru -- (talk) 18:08, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
Just downloaded a pdf of the K&R book, seems like just the ticket... DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 17:28, 31 December 2011 (UTC)