RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive145

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Republicans at it again.[edit]

"Every single republican senator on the Judicial committee voted to against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act". What the fuck is wrong with these people? Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 19:25, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

I'm coming to the conclusion that it isn't absurdly reductive to answer that question "religion." Religion is what is wrong with them. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 21:15, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
I've joked about this, but I think it may be a viable political strategy at some point: Dems should float a bill banning the use of babies as cooking ingredients. Since the automatic GOP reaction to everything these days is "Libruls are fer it? Then we're agin' it!" Hilarity will ensue. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:31, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
I don't really think it *is* religion. I think it's politics, the myth of reelection, and CONTROL. but that's just me, a pissed of woman. ;-) Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 23:45, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
Republicans, or most any politician for that matter, would gladly use the Bible for toilet paper if there were enough campaign contributions in it. It's money makes the world go 'round. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 00:18, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I can't figure out what constituent is served here if not god. There are very definitely those like Karl Rove who only suffer the Jesus freaks because they command so many votes, but when you're actually advocating for domestic abuse that's when you know you've probably drunk a little too much of the kool aid. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 06:46, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
If you want a Devil's Advocate opinion? There are several effects of the VAWA. Some of them even the ACLU didn't like (I have not investigated to see whether this reauthorization fixes that) because they are infringements on civil liberty. So if that hasn't been fixed a reasonable person could oppose it for that reason alone. Beyond that it creates what in the UK we'd call a quango, expanding the federal government with a new department in the DoJ whose purpose is mostly to ensure that existing law is enforced. ie their job is to do what the DoJ is already supposed to do. You could create an infinite number of such bodies, and a "small state" mindset would argue that you should instead create none of them. Likewise with the requirement to work with various agencies that, in a perfect world, they'd already be working with. The same mindset says that mandating this with an act of congress serves no purpose. Finally, in its title and to some extent in its language this makes the wrong distinction. "Violence against women" is not bad because they're female, it's bad because they're people. The title and language risks the situation where you have to do this whole exercise over again in a few years because now your statistics show problems for immigrants, or the rural poor, or gays, or.... (talk) 09:53, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
(If you want my personal opinion it's because the Republicans are cunts. But you see, that's not interesting at all, is it?) (talk) 10:59, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Any historians in the house?[edit]

Do we have any professional or at least student historians around here? I've been wondering for a while, how feasible is it for the total amateur to conduct ancient historical research? I have the impression that it might be more or less impossible, but I'd be happy if someone were to tell me otherwise. Do historians routinely publish translations of source materials they study, or is it expected that anyone with a legitimate interest already knows whatever ancient language is being discussed? Are archaeological finds routinely catalogued in print such that you can go to your local university library and study them, or is extensive travel and contacts in field required?

My interest is that I see a bunch of common evangelical assertions made about ancient Judean culture that I strongly suspect are pulled direct from the evangelists' collective arses but finding any information to refute them is more or less impossible from behind a laptop. I'd really like to find out if they really are bullshit, and if I find anything really interesting maybe consider writing a book about it. I suspect this is a pipedream though, maybe one of you guys can shatter my delusion. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 20:58, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Any historian who goes "well, anybody else who cares can already read this, so i wont bother providing a translation" is the worst historian ever and doesnt deserve the title (besides those who blatantly lie obviously). You SHOULDNT need to actually go and find the people; historians are bascialy scientists afterall and they do publish what they find, but where you can find it will probably depend on just what it is you want to find. --il'Dictator Mikal 21:07, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
@Mikalos: The problem is more about finding the proper resources for that specific question. Also, in many culture studies (and those are often those that write those things), a lot of things are not yet discussed, simply because there aren't enough scientists to do the research.
@Jeeves: I'm no a trained historian, but I have done my fair part of research how to do historical research (yeah, I've gone meta). The basis of all historical study is an understanding of the culture you are studying and a gut feeling if a source is credible or not. So, basically you have to know a lot to know if you just learned something. In this particular case you're dealing with a region and a time that is rather chaotic and unclear. Many little tribes and kingdom (and whatnot) all with their own different laws and traditions. My best guess would be to actually ask someone specialized in that region. A theologian specialized in the old testament with some historical background or somebody in Jewish studies might have more of a clue. --ʤɱ pervert 21:16, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
(EC)Er, what exactly are you looking for? I can't imagine that you'd need to go all the way to primary sources -- there are loads of books on the topic. In any case, many academically/expert-oriented (and sometimes even popular) history books include key documents w/ translations, maps, etc. All archaeological finds are catalogued in site reports. More general texts will highlight key findings, but if you absolutely need everything, you can get the site report, though you'll probably have to go through a university inter-library loan to get it. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:23, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
You think that, but actually you'd be completely wrong. That was my first thought too, but in fact there's an incredible paucity of actual history books of that kind published. Presumably because there's just no market for them. I quite enjoy reading history, but there are vast swathes of time that have virtually no coverage in bound books. At least books in English, anyway. For example, the books available on Moorish Spain and the reconquista are universally terrible. There's a lot more about Israel and Judea of course, but when you sift out all the pious bullshit then almost nothing is left. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 21:34, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
If you're looking for Old Testament stuff, The Bible Unearthed is a good read. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:38, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

I'm working on a Ph.D. in history, but my research is firmly grounded in the 20th century, so there's not a lot I can say about your field. That said, no matter what you study, you need the languages. If you're only working from translations, nobody will take you seriously. Also, having some sort of affiliation with a university might be your only ticket into the archives, depending of what archive you want to look at/what materials you want to see, but it could well be that the stuff you want to deal with has been published somewhere. If you need access to articles in an online database that you need to get at through a university subscription, (JSTOR, etc), drop me a line and I'll fish them up for you. P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 21:55, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Yeah, I rather suspected that was the answer. You need to know the language, and you need to know the people to make any sort of proper job of it. Ah well, a man can dream. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 21:59, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
None of that, of course, is good enough reason not to do the research that you can do with the skills and resources that you DO have. Remember, the root word of "amateur" is "love," and you should approach a topic that you care about like a true amateur--someone doing it for the love of it. P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 22:23, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
Something Foster might be suggesting is something I love about amature historians. Because they are not schooled in "traditional assumptions" and "standard methodology" 2 things can happen. you can get cranks who are convinced aliens visited us, or you can get someone who sees something differently and adds a totally unique perspective to the study - a very valid perspective. Happens "all the time". But it sounds like the level of what you want to do can be started as Neb suggested. Go to "source material translations" and see what you find. read a variety of translations. read a variety of commentaries. See where you get. As for getting to archives, if you have enough background research, you can get into virtually any academic archive even with out the credentials, but you really really have to work hard at that point. (or bring along a BBC camera. that seems to open any door). so definitely study what you love, and see where it takes you.Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 23:44, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
It would help if you said what exactly you're trying to do. I have access to JSTOR, Sagepub, etc. if you ever need it, though I suspect someone like P-F would know more relevant journals and sources. Now if you ever decide to get into psych or neuroscience...well, I once spent a good part of a semester just reading old issues of Hippocampus. Good times, good times. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 00:11, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Except I wouldn't really know relevant journals or sources; I'm too far down the "knowing more and more about less and less" slope for that. P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 00:16, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Heh, I'm getting there. Cog sci is interdisciplinary enough, though, that you can end up reading a medical journal one minute and a sociology journal the next, even for fairly specialized or esoteric subjects. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 00:29, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

As Richard Carrier notes, "Then I discovered that the field of New Testament studies was so monumentally fucked the task wasn’t as straightforward as I had hoped ... the biggest thing I discovered is that every expert who is a specialist in methodology has concluded, one and all, that the methods now used in Jesus studies are also totally fucked". Studies of the stuff before Jesus are not much better off, for the same reasons (too strong an interest in the answer they want to get). Carrier's book will be lots of fun - David Gerard (talk) 11:54, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Abd. And the Wikipedia Review.[edit]

Incoming crank alert: RW got mentioned on the Wikipedia Review, which apparently inspired Abd to register here. (If necessary, I can dig up his dirty laundry from Wikipedia.) This will be fun, though I'm more interested in watching. *readies popcorn* --ZooGuard (talk) 22:43, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

For those of us who actually get out of the basement often enough to have real lives, an you explain what any of this is about? P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 22:49, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
You can expect some edit warring and other drama around the cold fusion article. That is, if Abd bothers to edit it and if someone bothers to oppose his edits. The Wikipedia Review is a forum for, let's say, people who are butthurt about being kicked out of Wikipedia. (Hence the hurting butts.) --ZooGuard (talk) 23:02, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
User "Cedric" appears to know assume to understand the mission of RW. -- Seth Peck (talk) 23:10, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
An alternative description of WR is that it is a forum for people fed up with a lot of the crap that goes on at Wikipedia. (Follow AN/I for a week or two. Great entertainment, better than Conservapedia even). That it has its fair share of idiots is neither here nor there. Dendlai (talk) 23:19, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
An alternative alternative description is that it's a bunch of trolls, cranks and schizophrenics discovering they don't get along with each other any better than they get along with normal people. Every time I make the mistake of looking at it I feel stupider. But then, "I am the Loyal Opposition, you are an outsider with legitimate grievances, he is a gibbering care in the community nutter shouting abuse, flinging faeces and dribbling piss" - David Gerard (talk) 11:49, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Thanks for the welcome. I have dirty laundry from Wikipedia? I've been wondering why I'm short of shorts. Please, bring it, but I'd suggest it be on my talk page. Look, I know my way around a wiki, I survived for years with a screaming mob trying to get me permabanned on Wikipedia, and my little toe in the water on the "How I found RationalWiki" page was in direct response to the suggestion I post there, when I registered. It tells a tiny part of my history. As to cold fusion, I also know my way around that, as well, and I'm highly skeptical of a lot that is written about it. But not this review of the field; perhaps since I helped edit it and am so credited, just before the reference section. Toot, toot!
  • If you read the paper, the description of cold fusion in the paper abstract is a tad misleading, Storms did not take my advice there. Evidence is quite strong that there is a reaction in highly loaded palladium deuteride, under certain conditions, involving deuterium as a fuel, with helium as ash, but not necessarily a "reaction between deuterons," which sounds like "d-d fusion," which it probably isn't, and I could tell you lots of reasons why. But nobody knows for sure what it is.
  • If someone expects revert warring from me, they absolutely don't know my history.
  • As to Wikipedia Review, it attracts all kinds, from highly experienced Wikipedians who became disgusted, to, yes, banned users, some banned for offensive behavior, some banned for being successful critics, but also current administrators, functionaries, and arbitrators. Just sayin'. --Abd (talk) 00:36, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
We're pretty chill; you'll get a fair shake here.--ADtalkModerator 00:51, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Like fuck we're pretty chill, you piece of shit. F 01:09, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
You are twelve dildos embedded in a sow. That is what you are.--ADtalkModerator 01:28, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Rule 34? F 01:30, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Sounds like Wikipedia Review. I once called a highly abusive -- and highly privileged -- Wikipedia functionary a "fat asshole" on Wikipedia Review, where that kind of talk is de jure, and the idiot quoted it on Wikipedia, on an Arbitration Committee case talk page, apparently expecting that, why, of course, the users would rise en masse and demand that I be blocked on Wikipedia immediately. Instead, he'd allowed me, effectively, to call him that on Wikipedia, without being sanctionable for it. I think there was much more giggling than outrage, he was definitely obese and his arrogance had long been obvious to many, and, while he's still pretty powerful on Wikipedia, he's nowhere near what he once was, and may lose what's left in not very long, things have not been going well for him.
Thanks for the intro and for the reductio ad absurdem of block logs, Fallacy, AD, and the rest of the RationalWiki community. --Abd (talk) 01:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
This article remains the best summary of hardcore Wikipedians I have ever read.--ADtalkModerator 01:28, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Did you just randomly search SA for that or did you have it locked away for some reason? As for hardcore, just read a couple of talk pages; you learn quickly--il'Dictator Mikal 01:36, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I remembered it, and did a search to find it.--ADtalkModerator 01:53, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Appears entirely accurate - David Gerard (talk) 11:52, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

A question of scale[edit]

Have fun with this SWF if you haven't seen it before. -- Seth Peck (talk) 04:25, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

This is why I don't find religions impressive. Scarlet A.pngbomination 13:22, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Brokered conventions[edit]

Like any good political junkie, Andy has been nearly salivating over the prospect of a brokered Republican convention.

Here's an article on how that unlikely event may play out. MDB (talk) 14:02, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

TMZ calling Houston a drug death[edit]

I noticed a yahoo article about it that led nowhere so i looked at TMZ itself and got this. (Sidenote: TMZ is crap)--il'Dictator Mikal 14:24, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

External links[edit]

Sorry if this has already been covered, but did I miss something over the weekend? Why do external links now just look like regular wikilinks (i.e. without the popout box pic)? Cow...Hammertime! 16:54, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

I noticed that too (I was gone until Sunday evening). Also, did RobSmith (nobs) out himself as a parodist, or are his posts more reasonable now? -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:28, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I thought that was my cache, but I can't fix it by clearing it. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 19:11, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Same here, dunno why it happened though. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:26, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Charlie Brooker and the value of money[edit]

Can someone critique this? Don't know if he's serious or just doing a comedy act. Osaka Sun (talk) 18:16, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Comedian. SJ Debaser 18:18, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Reminds me of this. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:16, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Bitches, please, I think the word is "satirist". Scarlet A.pngtheist 21:34, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Given that the strapline is 'The true value of money – or why you can't fart a crashing plane back into the sky' , you don't need to know who Charlie Brooker is to spot comedy coming up.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 00:17, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

I'm sorry, but this is worth capturing:

Similarly, it may be tasteless when a rapper pops up on MTV wearing so much bling he might as well have dipped himself in glue and jumped into a treasure chest full of vajazzling crystals, but at least you understand how he earned it. RBS boss Stephen Hester, meanwhile, earns more than a million pounds for performing enigmatic actions behind the scenes at a publicly owned bank. And on top of his huge wage, he was in line for a massive bonus. To most people, that's downright cheeky: like a man getting a blowjob from your spouse while asking you to make him a cup of tea.

--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 00:21, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

I'm glad I live in a 3rd world backwater[edit]

My old man's just had a quadruple bypass. By the time we add up all the bills, we're looking at a total cost of around R700,000 - say $100,000, for 2 weeks in a private hospital, with ICU, etc, etc. How much do we pay of that? R0, thanks to medical aid.

A friend in the US has a husband who is recovering from pancreatitis, which has also necessitated time in an ICU. One of the things she mentioned in passing chilled me: "I'm spending so much time at the hospital, I'm just so grateful I have close friends and family organising a fund raiser to pay for this."


Remind me again what's so great about the US's healthcare system? --PsyGremlinParla! 18:43, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

It greatly supports Big Pharma and overmedicates the populace into a stupor where they believe whatever is told to them. Isn't that great??? -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:46, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
The United States has great health care. We suck at delivering it to our citizens. MDB (talk) 18:48, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Over medicating populations into a stupor is one of our few exports. nobsWe Are the 91.6% (still employed)!!! 19:31, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Glenn Beck says that really rich people come here from other countries to get health care. So... yeah, completely superior. Weaseloid (talk) 18:48, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Look, if people go and do stupid things like contract a deadly illness before they can even afford insurance, it's not my problem. Why should I have to pay for their mistakes? Looters... Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:21, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
My mum was sick with cancer for two years before she died: hospital stays = free. Doctors = free (but that is only because we come from a medical family and our family doctor went into business with my father). Two rounds of brain surgery = free. Two rounds of chemo = free. Flights to specialist hospitals = free. Cost of medication = $3.00 per prescription. Final days in a specialist palliative care center = free. Fucking Amazing. AceModerator 19:44, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
You see I don't see that as amazing. I come from a country that does the same as NZ, i.e. free at the point of use, and so it just seems perfectly normal and correct. It only seems amazing when put into context of the US system. Ajkgordon (talk) 19:51, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
That is what I meant, amazing in comparison to the US. Here it just seems...right. AceModerator 19:55, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Damn straight, bro. I luvs living in the third world. Ajkgordon (talk) 20:02, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Well, considering this I suppose if you count the US as a first world country I don't want to be part of the "first" world. I'd rather be the "second", like the sequel, World 2.0, better, faster, not a complete shit tip where basic human dignity correlates with earnings. Scarlet A.pngsshole 23:02, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

This is beyond cool[edit]

The scale of the universe -- interactive. MDB (talk) 19:12, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Hate to burst you bubble, look a few topics up. CopperheadHisssssss 19:13, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Ah, well. It's still cool. MDB (talk) 19:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
It doesn't seem to be 100% accurate but that was still awesome Tielec01 (talk) 04:12, 14 February 2012 (UTC)


Don't forget, folks, that there's still time to donate to our annual fundraiser. We are less than $900 away from our goal. If you still haven't or still would like to donate, please go to RationalWiki:Fundraiser and do so. The Wiki and all it's contributors will thank you. Recklessly Noise Punk What's this button do? Uh oh.... 13:40, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

What exactly would you do with the money? F 08:47, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Oh fuck me...[edit]

First two definitions of the word "moot" (from dictionary.com):

  1. open to discussion or debate; debatable; doubtful: a moot point.
  2. of little or no practical value or meaning; purely academic.

This trips me out. -- Seth Peck (talk) 02:15, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Stupid academics, with their facts and intelligence. All you need to know in life is how to put your penis inside a woman and spank your children. F 02:21, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Don't think I've really encountered the first one. Or I have, and I missed it completely because of the confusion... Peter Monomorium antarcticum 02:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
In terms of usage, I understood it to be "a point/distinction which has been rendered irrelevant" (talk) 03:16, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I think most of us have always thought it to mean the second definition, and not the first. (I'm reminded of Joey on Friends calling it a "moo" point...like a "cow's opinion", or something that doesn't matter). Interestingly, this whole discussion (and whether definition #1 is valid) actually makes the discussion a moot point. -- Seth Peck (talk) 03:21, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Goes to show: I've only heard or used the first def. Scream!! (talk) 03:43, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Is this one of those transatlantic things? I'm a Brit and I go with option 1. I've never heard of option 2. Jack Hughes (talk) 14:04, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I'm a Brit and never even seen it used in the first context, only ever the second. So when I tell someone they're an idiot and explain why their point is "moot", it's open to an alternate interpretation... bollocks. Scarlet A.pngpostate 14:07, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Backing up the two cultures divided by a common language theory, Wictionary has the 'no practical value' meaning as US only with the 'debatable' meaning still dominant in the UK. Jack Hughes (talk) 15:19, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Well, to be fair, the first definition is horrible. In one line, which should be the same definition, you have "open to debate", but also "doubtful". USUALLY in my mind, something that is doubtful is NOT open to debate. The OED on moot makes them far closer in meaning:


  1. 1subject to debate, dispute, or uncertainty: whether the temperature rise was mainly due to the greenhouse effect was a moot point #
  2. North American having little or no practical relevance: the whole matter is becoming increasingly moot -- --Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 15:38, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
"The first definition is horrible"? That's the original meaning in Old English. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 07:54, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I must say that I've seen both usages. But some words are confusing. Consider "sanction". Does it mean "approve" or "reject"?--BobSpring is sprung! 08:59, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

The Republican War on Birth Control[edit]

If you've been paying attention to the news the past week or so, you're aware of the debate over birth control, and mandated insurance coverage thereof, and charges that the Republicans are waging a war on birth control.

Okay, my initial thought was "we're actually debating birth control in 2012?"

But then I had a further thought. This isn't about birth control for the Republicans, not really. They know that if they seriously opposed contraception, they'd almost instantly become as relevant as the Whigs. After all, the American Catholic laity widely rejects church teaching on it. And only the most hardcore Protestant fundamentalists object to it (though a lot of other Protestants might want it kept to married couples.)

No, what this is really is reinforcing a perception that they've been spinning for years: that Democrats in general and Obama in particular are assaulting Christianity. The War on Christmas, Sharia Law horror stories, attacks on Obama's own faith, etc etc etc ad infimitum ad nauseam. MDB (talk) 17:31, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Interesting insight. Cause I have no other answers. "birth control?" a most basic need for 99% of women. And you want to say a relgious group can limit my access. (though i really liked obama's game. Once again, he used their own war against themselves. 'fine, you don't want to offer it, you don't have to. But i'll mandate that your insurance carrier must offer it individually, FOR FREE. and they will want to , cause BC for even a life time, is cheeper than one pregnancy.). Now they have nothing left to argue, since the "churches" aren't going to have to pay for it. yet they are still arguing?? I am dumbfounded. (and a bit or a lot angry, heh).Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 17:41, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I think it goes deeper than trying to position the Republican Party as a defender of religion against an Obama-led assault on religious freedom. Sex and reproduction have always been important sites for the exercise of political power, in modern times going back at least to Malthus. I really see this as an attempt to work to undermine the idea that women should have the freedom to make decisions about their reproductive futures. P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 17:51, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
This is going around the social media sites. "Inconceivable!" is usually the response that comes to mind first, an absolutely delicious pun. There appears to be a disconnect, I think Mitch McConnell made the most recent stupid assertion, that "freedom of religion" somehow applies to the religions themselves and not the citizens practicing them—which reminds me of an extension of the Citizens United "corporations are people" argument...now churches are people too, apparently. ThinkProgress's health site is now almost entirely filled with articles regarding this issue. -- Seth Peck (talk) 17:52, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I wonder... let's say the owner of Achmed's Halal Butcher Shop said "I don't want my employees health care coverage to include treatment for alcoholism or trichinosis." Would the Republicans defend that? Or would they scream "Sharia law!" MDB (talk) 18:19, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion'... TheCheatI run on alcohol 18:43, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Somebody is probably going to read what I write next as anti-American or the stereotypical "We in Europe are so much better than you!" type stuff, let me assure you it isn't meant as that.
About this whole "War on Religion"-thing in a grander view. American history is filled with "We need to fight against/for this"'s. Back in the ol' day it was monarchs that cut the freedom of their subjects for their own personal gain, then it became spreading democracy (and preserving the interest of American companies), then it became fascism, and then communism. And today we have a culture war of to competing sides. The one most of us are on is against religious fundementalism of any kind, against invasion of privacy. On the other side we have those that feel religion itself is attacked, and with that their culture is under attack. So, basically what we are seeing here is a fight over the next chapter in what I like to call "the American narrative". That force to have a narrative comes from the fact that America is not just simply, like other nations, a society of individuals with a common destiny — it's not just there, it needs a purpose. A German, Frenchman, Japanese, Korean can be a communist, democrat, conservative, racist, anarchist or anything else, he/she is by defintion of culture and native language a member any of those nations. To these nations of common destiny there is no purpose, they are simply there until they aren't anymore. But with nations of will, that means a lot of people that have nothing like this in common (different cultural backgrounds, different languages, skin colors, histories), this isn't the case, such countries need a purpose, a reason to be on earth. But don't you think you are special with this, Switzerland has the same problem and a lot of African countries follow a kind of "power to the natives"-philosophy (let's not get into the discussion what a native is...). As the US was the first modern nation to be democratic, that has taken the purpose. Liberals and secularists have taken it up to mean that democracy has no religion and actually arguing that religion is a private matter, while conservatives have included Christianity to be a part of that democracy, and therefor laws should follow what they see as Christianity. In Switzerland this get's filled with the need to uphold democracy in their own country at any cost, whilst the battleground is neutrality in foreign affairs. In a bizarre turn of events, Americans have polarized almost every issue (further constructing a black and white view of things), that in this manner doesn't really pop up.
So, at some point there is going to be what we call in German a "Richtungswahl", an election in which it really isn't about any candidate or party in and of itself, but an election that further makes clear in which direction the people of a country want to go. But this will take some time, and more importantly more people from the left getting elected (and with that I mean people that openly wear the term "socialist" or "social democrat" on, well, something). But it also takes millions of people at once considering that how the have behaved in the last decade or so may have been wrong. Ok. what the fuck does this have to do with birth control, well, it is one battlefield of dozens… --ʤɱ atheist 18:47, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
This was in the works for some time. Also, apologies for replacing the last asshole with another one. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:03, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I"m just... seriously left with no rationality, no logic, just emotion. I actually have sex now and again. I actually choose to show my feelings of intimacy with a partner. Each morning, i and some 100 million women in this country alone, get up, take a pill, and decide when how we will choose to participate in our own lives. You cannot know how strange it is, how deeply shocking(?) it is to watch people play politics with your very day to day life and future. Abortion is one thing, cause I actually get that it's a life being killed. I disagree that it is anyone's business but mine, but i get that a living thing dies. But birth control? A political issue? 100 someodd bishops, 4 major presidential candidates, all men of course, saying to me "go have a baby, or be lonely. Those are you only choices in life". It's profoundly disturbing to read things statements in this or other articles. Disturbing to the point where there are no arguments left, just a mixed sense of "how dare you" "I don't understand", and "I'm here, I'm right in the room, you can actually ask me, and not just talk about me..." Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 00:09, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
You might have seen before that I've said the US poor don't vote in their own interests. Sadly I think the same is true for women. The candidates know that far from being political suicide (as it should be on the plain numbers) anti-woman policies are successful. I have no idea how to fix that, in the sense of getting women (or the poor, or any other group which is numerically large but doesn't achieve proportional political impact) to stand up for themselves as a group. Individual women can succeed, but that doesn't alter the political landscape. I bet even Hilary Clinton's primary advisors told her that anti-woman policies are a safe bet.
Of course it shouldn't matter. The purpose in having a representative democracy rather than outright mob rule is that even minority interests should be considered. Removing cheap and effective birth control from health coverage would still be a stupid idea if only 1% of the voting population were using birth control. But it's astounding that US politics is in the situation where even those who the policy would adversely affect will vote for politicians who supported and even championed it. (talk) 13:41, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Whilst I'm a firm believer in all health care - including contraceptives and abortions - should be free at the point of delivery, this blanket "women don't vote in their best interests" is a shade arrogant. So, you know better than 50% of the electorate what is good for them? It may be that women, like the rest of us, vote for politicians who they feel would best represent their interests across the whole range of deciding factors. There are a great many reasons for choosing which politician to vote for and "women's issues" may well not be at the top of the list, even for women. Traditionally, the parties of the right are believed to be more fiscally responsible - I'm not saying this is right, I'm saying what the perception is - and, with the current ongoing fiscal crisis maybe voting in the "fiscally responsible" party is the right thing to do. I'm not saying this view point is correct, I am saying it's valid. Jack Hughes (talk) 15:16, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Bad books[edit]

Times HE has a pretty good piece on the telltale signs of bad scholarship in pseudo-academic bestsellers like The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail & its ilk. Mostly arts/humanities focussed, but a lot of these no doubt apply to popular science stuff too. WẽãšẽĩõĩďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:21, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Great article. The endnotes/bibliography is probably the fastest way to spot crap. Lots of pop "scholarship" will cite press releases or articles from newspapers instead of actual studies. Cranks also tend to cite the same few (usually discredited) sources over and over -- if you're familiar with the subject, you can usually play bingo with the references section. Speaking of cranks, I need to find that Shlain book. Two of my (least?) favorite forms of bullshit in one book (neuro-woo and goddess guff)? A must-read! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:54, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Citing opinion polls too. Fuck you, Susan Jacoby. Fuck you. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 20:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
The article part is fine...probably should be captured for perpetuity, if possible. Some of the comments from professors are inane, though...this one in particular:
Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion (2006). This book demonstrates the asymmetry of academic standards. A book by a theologian speaking this ignorantly about biology would never have been published, let alone become a best-seller. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to work the other way round.
—Steve Fuller, professor of sociology at the University of Warwick
  1. Books about biology by theologians DO get published, some ignorant, some otherwise. Sometimes quite fortunately. Sometimes quite unfortunately.
  2. Having a degree in theology is akin to having a degree in literature, except that (in acquiring said degree) you don't read as many books. One might as well have a degree in "Rowling fiction"—at least there would be fewer contradictions to debate.
  3. The God Delusion has less to do with theology and more to do with naturalism and rationalism, and most of the actual theology in the book comes not from interpretation but from direct quoting of the Bible and its supporters.
I'd argue that this comment suggests Fuller didn't actually read the book. -- Seth Peck (talk) 20:58, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I wouldn't be surprised, I certainly don't count TGD as a serious book on theology. Dawkins in fact spends quite a bit of it justifying why he is qualified to talk on the subject - mostly by asking exactly that second point there. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 21:31, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
TGD wasn't even intended as an academic book and Dawkins said as much. (Surely a rebuttal to some esoteric argument Alvin Plantinga made 15 years ago would sell like hotcakes!) Steve Fuller is a crank anyway, I don't know why they let him waste space at THE, even if I do agree w/ him on The Blank Slate -- that was the point where Pinker started becoming less interested in anything resembling actual research and more in pushing his pet theories in the popular press. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:44, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
@Seth - just for the sake of it, it's not worth the strawman you just built. ""having a degree in theology"... you clearly don't have much idea what is involved in a PhD in theology, but it's not "except you read less books". Generally you need competence in 3 languages as well. I'm just saying, it doesn't do any good to simply dismiss people and academics you find little value in. (I mean, of course dismiss them for yourself, but not the quality of academics they do). LOL to the pinker comment. Academic research doesn't pay. wanna make money? you have to write a book for the masses. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:58, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
@Godot: I don't doubt the amount of work that you have to do to obtain a Ph.D in theology (or even a bachelor's in Religious Studies). My point in my second comment, as ADK mentioned, is that after all that work, time and expense, you're still just an expert in something that's ultimately fictional and contributes very little toward the progress and enlightenment of society at large and, when you take into account the realities of modern life, does substantial harm. Compare that to doing your doctoral thesis on Shakespeare and other Elizabethan-era authors (as a scientifically-inclined family friend of mine, David Levy did), which does NO harm, and promotes critical thought and debate amongst its fans (without fear of blasphemy, heresy or apostasy). -- Seth Peck (talk) 23:33, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Biased much? Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 23:59, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Coloring me "biased" against religion would be like calling me biased against the study of dragons, or (in a different vein) like me calling you biased against the pro-life agenda. I think you're playing the devil's advocate just for the sake of argument. And my shameless name-dropping of a rather famous astronomer (among astronomers) was only an example, I could give hundreds of other examples of specialized fields of study that require as much, if not more study than doctorates in theology, and provide infinite more benefits without the harm of bigotry. -- Seth Peck (talk) 03:38, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Actually, the best method for spotting bad non-fiction books, if you have access to a university library, is to look for reviews in relevant scholarly journals. Go straight for the negative ones if you want to save time. Reviews in the press are worthless -- they never check anything for factual accuracy. Can't count how many times I've heard "But (insert middlebrow periodical here) gave it a good review!" about some travesty of pop pseudo-scholarship. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:48, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Even more generally, the negative reviews are far more useful. While a glowing 5* review that's well written is useful, if you have, say, 50 reviews to read then you can't easily and quickly tell the difference between a good positive review and one that is just gushing with praise because the reviewer has a particular bias. The 1* reviews, however, tell a different story. If it's a really good book, then the attitude of those trashing it should be quite illuminating, if it's a really bad one, then the people trashing it are more likely to be very in depth with it. Try this trick on Amazon for all the usual suspects. Scarlet A.pngnarchist 11:32, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Anyone know what the deal is with Ray Comfort's book in progress?[edit]

Ray was scheduled to release a new book in April about biomimetics. Basically variations on the theme of "humans dumb! God smart!" But I've seen tantalising hints on the interwebs that he's been forced to scrap it because he was caught plagiarising the thing. Again.

Anyone know any more about this? It'd be pretty interesting to learn that the guy who goes around preaching hellfire is such a dishonest prick that being caught plagiarising once wasn't enough to dissuade him. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 20:12, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

He wasn't just caught once; it was repeatedly. I'm not sure how much everyone follows him, but he started a new blog format at the beginning of the year. He had one section of the usual dumb evangelizing stuff, then a section that was a supposed "excerpt" from his upcoming book. People quickly picked up on the fact that these were verbatim paragraphs from various webpages on biomimicry (one was from Harun Yahya, which I found hilarious), so he started sourcing them back to the websites he stole from. Soon he stopped mentioning his upcoming book, but kept going with stealing outright or just doing a thesaurus word-swap on a few words from more biomimicry sites. I reported a few of his posts to the respective copyright holders, and I noticed at least one of his old posts were taken down. Finally, he just stopped talking about biomimicry altogether and changed his format again. So he's either completely scrapped it, or he's going to quietly publish it and hope the copyright holders don't sue the shit out of him for stealing their work. Cow...Hammertime! 20:22, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
It's not plagiarism, it's bibliomimicry! Sophiebecause liberals 20:50, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

For those with netflix[edit]

I recommend the movie The Trotsky if you want something to kill some time with that isnt that bad. IMDB, Trailer--il'Dictator Mikal 06:00, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Hoping I get the 'Netflix' sig substitution... Fallacy (talk) 07:34, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Fuck. Scream!! (talk) 07:35, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Now, how do I persuade Big Hollywood to make that kind of a service come to NZ? Peter Monomorium antarcticum 07:37, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
You can talk to them. --ʤɱ libertarian 15:15, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Yay. I have Netflix~ Watching now!--Dumpling (talk) 07:54, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Added to my queue. It looks intriguing, at least. And much as I'm enjoying watching Downton Abbey on Netflix, I need something different from that.
Speaking of interesting films on Netflix, CSA is good is you like alternate history. Imagine a Ken Burns style documentary... done in a world where the Confederacy won. MDB (talk) 13:09, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Its still on Netflix? I need to remember to re-watch that sometime. --il'Dictator Mikal 20:31, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
It was as of yesterday, and they didn't have a warning that it's time on Netflix was drawing short. MDB (talk) 13:31, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Is RW an encyclopedia?[edit]

Is RationalWiki an encyclopedia? There have been various attempts to remove e.g. country and state articles from mainspace, because they're off mission, but discussions about having a reference space of some sort end with an apathetic response. So should we decide to have purely factual, non-mission stuff in mainspace, and remove this rather central part of our purpose? Should we stick to the mission or just write about stuff we like? I'm in the mood to get this decided. Sophiebecause liberals 19:00, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

No. Jesus (talk) 19:06, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I think we need we need to at least keep the missions in mind. We have some stuff that wanders off from them a bit, but it's mostly tangentially connected with the mission themes in some way. If we let people write about whatever without restrictions, we'll end up with a ton of articles about whatever music, films, hobbies, etc. people are into, which really won't connect with each other & would just look odd alongside our mission-related stuff. WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:09, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Agree.Тyrant 20:24, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Also, that sig substitution was the best coincidence ever. Goat (talk) 19:27, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I don't really see how non-rationalist-related articles detract from the main articles, unless they're poorly written. Goat (talk) 19:27, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I think it's mainly a question of what we can provide that wikipedia doesn't do a better job of in that regard. If there's something that RW can add that WP doesn't and can't have, then sure. But for the most part, for general interest informational articles rather than articles on quackery you're better off referring people to WP. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 20:05, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
In a way, yes, but I think the strictly encyclopedic nature of Wikipedia, while making it good for a lot of things, limits it some regards, and people could better, more opinionated and less fact-based articles on hobby subjects. ColbertFan (talk) 20:14, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
we are a encyclopedia, but of a certain area of topics, not everything. anything outside the mission really does need a reason to exist. --il'Dictator Mikal 20:17, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
That doesn't mean we can't allow hobby articles, as long as they're not the main focus. Terry Pratchet (talk) 20:20, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
hobby articles sounds userspaceish--il'Dictator Mikal 20:21, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
You seem user_space-ish. Fallacy (talk) 20:23, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I've read you say this, several time, Sophie, but i really think the editors at large do police ourselves/eachother pretty well. Other than the "nation stuff", you've not really mentioned specific articles, so I'm slightly dubious of your case. But if you have specific articles in mind, then draw attention to it. I know I really only see what other people are editing, unless it's religion/women related, so I don't even know we have an article on X or Y. I bet most editors are similar. "i have some areas I follow, and I follow recent changes". Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 20:27, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I only really follow my slowly-growing Watchlist. Fallacy (talk) 20:28, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I follow Recent Changes; how i keep appraised of whats going on here. Not much else to do given I don't edit mainspace to often--il'Dictator Mikal 20:31, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
A lot of the stuff in category:Articles needing RWification, for a start. Why do we have a Jamestown article? Sophiebecause liberals 20:48, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Because the article's original author wrote it for Conservapedia, got banned there for some misdemeanour, & took out his butthurt by copying & pasting a bunch of his articles to RW. Five years on, our Jamestown article is still virtually identical to the one at CP. That's as good a reason as any to delete it. WěǎšěǐǒǐďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 23:07, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Mabye I wasn't clear. Sorry. those articles have been noticed. We've not done anything about them, but the system is doing what it's supposed to be doing. Seriously, though, if you don't like an article give it a vote, come back and delete it. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:41, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Again, that we are not an encyclopedia does not preclude us from having information present, and the RW is not an enc page even says that: "The community has embraced the concept of wikis by creating an information source out of the collaborative editing of thousands of people." Yes, it ought to be related to anti-science and the like, that some pages, like flagellum, do fit nicely. (Slovenia, not as much.) steriletalk 23:49, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

The country pages could have a discussion of country-specific conspiracies, and other local topics in pseudoscience. For example Poland has some information on one right-wing party's conspiracy theory that the Smolensk plane crash was due to Russian sabotage. Obviously this requires some contributors "on the ground". --Tweenk (talk) 03:48, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

It's only off-mission if you don't like the person who wrote the article. Case in point, Human saying that massage was off mission, and that bloated, deluded hag saying that CPR was off-mission--User:Brxbrx/sig 01:09, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Wow you have issues. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 01:38, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
"Shut up, Brx."ArchieGoodwin (talk) 04:43, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
There are a number of technically off-mission articles that are useful as support articles. If it's useful as a support article, it's fine, but I don't see a point in having articles on, say, parcheesi or golden retrievers. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:02, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Never more than the one level of 'support', however. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 07:08, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Hey, sometimes you just need that extra support. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:15, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

The problem with off-mission articles is that somebody will come along and grow them into something big which has nothing to do with the project. Bob Dylan is a case in point.--BobSpring is sprung! 07:45, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Shall I resurrect the useful reference article Felidae? Sophiebecause liberals 16:05, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Bob, if it's intersting, or well written, I don't really think it's that bad *once and a while*. Besides, Dylan surly is on mission. Drugs, Liberal... new yorker (I think). But in all seriousness. I said this to Brx at the time of hte whole "CPR" issue, and I hold to it. Virtually ANYTHING from a discussion of 2+2, to the new shipment of oranges at my safeway can be "On Mission" if you put thought into it. The questions we need to ask in any article is "What are we saying that other sites aren't saying it?" "Why is this thing important to us, to society, to goats", "How might this draw someone to our wiki". It takes time and thought, but you really can do whatever folats your boat. Missionaity is far less about a set of topics, and far more about how we present them. If we keep that in mind, I think it does become clear what we should keep, what we can delete, and what we might want to keep with changes. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 16:23, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Godot - Have you actually read the Bob Dylan article? Does it in fact do any of the things you suggest?--BobSpring is sprung! 19:54, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
It's good to see that you have now at least read the article we were talking about.--BobSpring is sprung! 20:45, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Constitutional sheriff and peaceofficer convention[edit]

These guys are a crazy group. They just had their convention, and sherrifs from colorado are coming back reporting on teh crazy. [1]Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:27, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

I'm never going to accept the term peaceofficer .--il'Dictator Mikal 21:30, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, well, according to this page, Sheriffs are the HIGHEST LAW IN THE LAND. and can tell federal authorities to go shove it. So, it's up to the sheriffs to declare martial law and take over. (I'm not kidding). Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:34, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I was just reading that and im just like "uh huh...". --il'Dictator Mikal 21:38, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Ohhh, reading more, this is the "brain child" of az sherriff Joe Arpaio, who is setting up (in his mind anyhow) a phsical confrontation between himself and the Feds when the laws about immigration from AZ are correctly shown to be unconstitutional. I get it. "we are empowered to kick Feds off teh land". great. a bunch of gun happy texan sherriffs against the Feds. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:39, 14 February 2012 (UTC) (ec)
I don't think this guy understands that he cant possibly fight the gov't off, and nobody is going to give a rats ass if the government forces they're way into the county. --il'Dictator Mikal 21:43, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
They sound eminently article-worthy. Sophiebecause liberals 21:56, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
It does; so i made it :D. but im a shitty writer so i cant really do much more then i did. It does remind me of Jpatt's call for the US army to overthrow obama though; cause they have a constitutional power to do that.--il'Dictator Mikal 22:15, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Which you know, in any other world is treason. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 01:37, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
In America, it only counts as treason if the government actually hangs the rebels. (See: The Butler Plot, and the entire American Civil War.) --Gulik (talk) 05:54, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
"No Sheriff Left Behind". Really? They're going with that? WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 07:16, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Mack is a member of Oath Keepers. They aren't just your run-of-the-mill wingnuts, but part of the militia movement. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:26, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

HADCRUT and Global Warming[edit]

Recently I was on an IRC and got into an argument with someone on Global Warming. They said that global warming wasn't happening and more carbon dioxide was good for trees, and then cited HADCRUT and Watts. Also, I've learned that the only thing one can go back to is saying "WELL THE SURFACE TEMPERATURE OF THE EARTH IS UNRELIABLE. LIKE THE HOCKEY STICK GRAPH" and that while Watts can make mistakes, Mann cannot because he's an evil evil liar and alarmist. Sometimes I just don't know about people. I cited several other things but they went NOPE, IF IT HAS MANN'S NAME ATTACHED I AIN'T LOOKIN'. Hollow (talk) 12:10, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Mann's Law: As an online climate change debate grows longer, the probability that denier arguments will descend into attacks on Michael Mann approaches one? Osaka Sun (talk) 12:26, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Such attacks are grossly unfair. Heat was an excellent film. Sophiebecause liberals 16:08, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Also apparently cherry picking is okay because it's part of science to cherry pick things which support your position. Hollow (talk) 16:26, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Tsk tsk. You weren't playing by da rules. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:05, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
I like those rules. I should write some for religion too. Scarlet A.pngsshole 02:02, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Jerome Corsi fired.[edit]

The man behind the "the birth certificate is a fraud and I say so because they showed it to us before I could sell copies of my 'Where's the Birth certificate?' book" movement has apparently been fired from his job as an investment banker. Seems he's been reporting on a "money laundering scheme at HSBC"... something that "no other news agencies have picked up" on. Of course, Farah doesn't see this as being the result of Corsi making shit up, but rather "the kind of reporting that distinguished American journalism for the previous 200 years." --PsyGremlin講話 14:01, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Please block me for 6 days.[edit]

Block first, then remove rights. I'm an idiot. Someone put me on the bench for 6 days, please? Thanks. See you next week. P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 16:05, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Done.ТyLonely. Ever so lonely. 16:07, 15 February 2012 (UTC)


Like this, but with the text. Doing some Twitter background photoshopping. Osaka Sun (talk) 20:15, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

File:Rw logo text.png Scarlet A.pngbomination 01:58, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Facepalm. Thanks. Osaka Sun (talk) 02:36, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Read this, then give us the money.[edit]

If you're a regular reader or contributor, please consider supporting this fine project. Thanks. — Unsigned, by: P-Foster / talk / contribs

I'd like to donate, but as an American college student I wouldn't be able to give a lot. Would small donations be seen as rude? Sam Tally-ho! 23:50, 21 January 2012 (UTC)
Not nearly as much as "no donation" would. :-). Whatever you can. P-Foster Talk "Watched Mad Men thinking it was supposed to be a sit-com. Found it disappointing." 23:51, 21 January 2012 (UTC)
Is there a way to donate anonymously? I've donated before and my name appeared on a "thank you" crawl of donors (presumably my name was taken from my PayPal account). It's not a huge deal but for various reasons I'd prefer to remain anonymous. Doctor Dark (talk) 00:20, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
I believe if you hit the "donate" button rather than using the "give" button in the widget, your donation won't be included in the widget's accounting. That's certainly the way it worked last time. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 00:43, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Is that thing still around? Where? I thought it had been scrapped months or years ago. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 01:02, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Either 5 mm below the big flashy donation widget, or in the sidebar to the left. Either is fine. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 01:11, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
I'm looking in Google Chrome & Internet Explorer and can't see it in either. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 01:36, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Just under the toolbox, no? Peter Monomorium antarcticum 01:46, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Nope, this is all I see. Nobody's names. WėąṣėḷőįďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 01:57, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Do you mean this, where the name is visible? P-Foster Talk "Watched Mad Men thinking it was supposed to be a sit-com. Found it disappointing." 02:03, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Yes, but AFAIK, none of the current donation links go to that page. WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 02:27, 22 January 2012 (UTC):
We're talking at cross purposes - Jeeves means the 'donate' button, which is visible in both screenshots. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 02:17, 22 January 2012 (UTC)

I havent offically launched it yet, was just doing some work while I had the time. I will try and emphasize the anonymous method. (talk) 02:10, 22 January 2012 (UTC)

Thanks. I didn't mean to cause a lot of trouble. Doctor Dark (talk) 05:07, 22 January 2012 (UTC)

I just donated $10. Mindme (talk) 15:52, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

College Democrats giving out free condoms[edit]

For Valentines day; i find this humorous --il'Dictator Mikal 16:58, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Are the college Republicans giving out free chastity belts? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 17:20, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Of course, people still have a choice whether or not to use the condoms that they receive...which is better than no option. I'm reminded of Michelle Rodriguez's line from Alien vs. Predator: "A gun is like a condom: I'd rather have one and not need one, than need one and not have one." In my experience, the free ones aren't as comfortable as others one might pay good money for. -- Seth Peck (talk) 17:29, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I have never paid for condoms in my life. You just pick up a hand full at the bar. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:54, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Remember, you get what you pay for. MDB (talk) 18:57, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
And if you don't pay for high quality condoms, you get STI's/pregnancy? Fieka (talk) 18:58, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
No. Trading standards prevents such things. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:04, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Can you actually feel the difference between one type an another? (sorry, but i had to ask... it's one of those 'how does this peice of flesh work" curiosities. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 23:18, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Barely. Maybe if you going for the ribbd variety. AMassiveGay (talk) 08:19, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Godot--yes, at least I certainly can. Some feel thin, or too dry, or, usually in my case, way too tight. :D -- Seth Peck (talk) 23:09, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Condoms and Sex ed in Nebraska[edit]

So nebraska is a pretty conservative state; besides omaha (was talking to one of the CDs there and her description of moving to omaha was "Hallelujah!"); this also includes what som,e parts consider Sex ed... Apparently where she came from high schools taught "Condoms only work half the time anyways so it isnt even worth using one". --il'Dictator Mikal 20:05, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Even if they did work only "half the time" they'd still be worth using. That just doesn't follow as a basic principle of logic. Scarlet A.pngpathetic 23:07, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
They told us similar things here when they acknowledged their existence at all. Also, they claimed they were useless at protecting against STDs. ТySerious Business Guy 23:08, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Logic is for libruls and queers! -- Seth Peck (talk) 23:10, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
So their goal is to make more unwanted babies AND get you sick. Just so you understand that sex is evil. (sighs...)Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 23:19, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Also, being married magically makes you immune to your partner's stds. Тysic semper 23:39, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Fear and guilt are powerful motivators for Catholics. -- Seth Peck (talk) 23:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Surprisingly, my old teacher was all for condoms. It's Oklahoma, and it might just be a fluke. It also happens that both of my chemistry teachers think global warming is a political conspiracy against 'merica.Z3100x (talk) 23:08, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Since it's almost Valentine's Day...[edit]

...Teehee.--Dumpling (talk) 19:42, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

and more -- Seth Peck (talk) 19:47, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
BUT WHY CHOCOLATES AND FLOWERS? D: Why not paintbrushes and a cactus?--Dumpling (talk) 19:59, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Because cactus aren't romantic. Or something. I'll see if I can get you one for your birthday. ТyPlease do not click on this 20:08, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
It better be an awesome cactus. With a mustache. And a top hat. So I can name it Eugene.
Shorter Ty Tyrannis for now: "I have no romantic interest in you." --ʤɱ netlabelist 20:57, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Lol. Not even wrong. Тyrannosaurs 21:11, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Heh.--Dumpling (talk) 02:32, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Valentine's Day sucks.
Why, yes, I am single. Why do you ask? MDB (talk) 20:07, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
-hugs!- ^u^--Dumpling (talk) 20:25, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
*ahem* I'm single too. *ahem* --ʤɱ digital native 20:57, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
HUGS FOR YOU!--Dumpling (talk) 21:17, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Valentine's Day does suck, and I'm not single! Cow...Hammertime! 21:00, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
SUCK ON THIS!--Dumpling (talk) 21:17, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
The worst part of valentine's day isn't that you can't get away from the corporate luvvy-ness, it's that you can't get away from the cynical backlash to the corporate luvvy-ness. Scarlet A.pngmoral 21:26, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Hahaha. You've got a good point. Oh well. Not much you can do except spend the day/night with Mrs. ADK and celebrate the ADK-way. ;D --Dumpling (talk) 02:32, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
@ dumpling, cause chocolate's name is Theobromine. "food of the gods". that's why. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:30, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Mmm....Yes indeed. --Dumpling (talk) 02:32, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Welp, found my card. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:36, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Very Nice. HAVE FUN NEBBY.--Dumpling (talk) 02:32, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
I don't think Bast likes chocolate. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 21:37, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Scoff, Bast is female. she likes chocolate. I think it's in our DNA. ;-) @Neb - nice. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:54, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Corporate conglomerates stealing your hard-earned money!--Colonel Sanders (talk) 03:05, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Hahaha. But my hugs are free!--Dumpling (talk) 03:30, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Then how come I don't get one?.--Colonel Sanders (talk) 03:56, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
HUUUUUG!--Dumpling (talk) 04:01, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Awww, thanks Dumpling!--Colonel Sanders (talk) 04:07, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
The day's not over yet, Colonel. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 03:57, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, that about describes my day. Although not nearly to such an extreme level. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 03:48, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
And a hug for you too!--Dumpling (talk) 04:01, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Wait... there's hugs for single people? /looks expectant. --PsyGremlinSpeak! 05:08, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
OF COURSE!GLOMP! --Dumpling (talk) 05:12, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Best. Hug. Ever. *blushes bright red* --PsyGremlinPrata! 05:30, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
You're very welcome! -bow-
That wasn't a hug, that's a body slam. Dumpling is secretly trying to kill you so she can inherit your vast wealth. Money is a best valentine, after all. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 07:28, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
There are worse ways to die. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 07:31, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Hahahaha. DARN STABBY! Don't tell the world my diabolical plan! GAWSH!--Dumpling (talk) 07:47, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

More importantly, tomorrow is Discount Chocolate Day! Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 05:46, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Wrong. Tomorrow is "All the Easter adverts go up in the shops" day. --PsyGremlinПоговорите! 05:52, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Indeed. Time to put the 'Peeps' into the microwave and watch them explode.--Dumpling (talk) 05:59, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
You murder people by exploding them? o__o Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 06:39, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
That is apparently only one of her methods. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 06:41, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Now this is nice. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 06:52, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Wow. That was nifty!--Dumpling (talk) 07:47, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

YAY!Dumpling (talk) 09:34, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Not to be outdone in the quirky Valentine's Cards stakes... --PsyGremlinSiarad! 10:15, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Spent last night as a total /b/tard. Feel like a loser, but don't really care since I had some lulz. (insane laughter) Z3100x (talk) 23:11, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the hugs.
Now, I'm wondering what a rational hug is like. MDB (talk) 13:02, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Today's Google Doodle (which is actually a video) is just charming, even enough to warm the heart of the bitter and cynical on V-Day. MDB (talk) 13:50, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Commie Valentines (also Hitler). WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:57, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

For nerdy American liberals[edit]

(not that there's any of those on this site, no no no...) National Public Radio Valentines MDB (talk) 17:29, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

I think this can't be topped for shear nerdyness. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 06:10, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Sean Penn's whining about the Falklands[edit]

Ok while scanning through my beloved daily mail and it's brand new attempt to sink to conservapedia like levels of fail with regards to Dawkins, I caught note of Sean Penn recently giving his full backing to the Argentine government in demanding Britain hand over the Falklands, and upon googling it, it seems that he has indeed done so, and in the sort of smug, whiny, and self righteous sneering that seems to epitomize the worst stereotypes right wingers like to use as strawmen. I am curious (and also too lazy to research) as to whether this is typical from him or whether he has any actual reason for loudly butting into an issue to which he has zero seeming link to? Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 15:58, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

I seem to recall him making visits to Iran, Cuba and Venezuela, supporting Hugo Chavez, and working with Cindy Sheehan...possibly some other things...-- Seth Peck (talk) 16:09, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Amusing response. -- Seth Peck (talk) 16:12, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
I'd back Argentina just to live dangerously and be a contrarian. Scarlet A.pngsshole 16:19, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
I've never known much about the falklands, the last war, or the current animosity but I did enjoy that article. X Stickman (talk) 00:35, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
My entire understanding of the Falklands war is it was about as useful as the war of 1812 was. --il'Dictator Mikal 06:01, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Am I the only one who spots the irony in Argentina (a country which was brutally invaded and populated by the Spanish) complaining about the Brits colonising the Falklands? How about you give Argentina back to the Sanavirones and we'll hand over the Falklands? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 09:26, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
No, you're not. I have repeatedly made the same point (not here) and even argued it on LBC back in the early 80s. If we want to live in a peaceful world then there's a practical limit about how far you can take territorial claims back in history given the amount of mass migrations and wars, although this becomes more complicated when an indigenous population has suffered and is still being oppressed. In the case of the Falklands they were uninhabited both before being discovered by Europeans and when settled by the British, so it's not as if any "natives" were displaced/dispossessed, unlike most of the Americas. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 10:18, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Spur-of-the-moment name change[edit]

Fallacy --> An American Nihilist. Make it happen people. Fallacy (talk) 03:17, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Done. AceModerator 03:33, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Now I can be even more pretentious :D
What do I mean by that? Nothing, really. Fallacy (talk) 03:40, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Is there something particularly noteworthy about you being a american nihilist? --il'Dictator Mikal 03:54, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
There's something about it -- it kind of reminds me of 'An American Tail', or anything else that starts with 'An American'. The shortened version, like always, is just 'Nihilist', like it was with 'Fallacy'. An American Nihilist (talk) 03:57, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Like an 'American Psycho'? Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 10:37, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Could be more appropriate. Scarlet A.pngsshole 15:46, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Or an 'American Horror Story'? Cow...Hammertime! 16:43, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Or American History ... wait no that's going too far. X Stickman (talk) 20:24, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Papers needed[edit]

I am trying to improve the 101 evidences page to cover story standard. For this I could use some papers which are not available at my library:

If someone can find these papers and improve "101 evidences" using their content, or at least send them to me, it would be appreciated. --Tweenk (talk) 03:44, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Send me an e-mail with full citations and I can get you copies. Tmtoulouse (talk) 07:20, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Probably a stupid question, but where can I find your e-mail? --Tweenk (talk) 07:29, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Special:EmailUser/Tmtoulouse, if you have your own email enabled. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 07:33, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Yah you can e-mail me from here or ttoulouse@gmail.com just make sure you give me an e-mail address that can accept big enough attachments. Tmtoulouse (talk) 07:34, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

The Sun[edit]

I'll just leave this here for your viewing pleasure [2] CrundyTalk nerdy to me 09:42, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

This video contains content from Channel 4, who has blocked it on copyright grounds. Replacement link Scream!! (talk) 11:21, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Kids learn about scientists[edit]

Some seventh graders took a field trip to FermiLab. (Lucky little bastards... Of course, I got to go American Museum of Science and Energy when I was a kid, and my utter fascination with it explains a lot about how I turned out. It was probably the first place I got to use a computer. You could play Hangman. On a TRS-80!)

These are their pictures of what they thought "a scientist" looked like before and after their trip. MDB (talk) 13:29, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

A couple of my favorite places to visit when I lived in Illinois. -- Seth Peck (talk) 16:29, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
This one is my favorite. The "before" includes an explosion, which is always good, and the "after" looks like the lead of "Breaking Bad". MDB (talk) 13:40, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
I'm not sure actually telling kids that being a scientist doesn't involve blowing shit up and creating doomsday weapons is the best way to promote your field of study. Leave it as a nasty surprise for when they become a post-grad. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 13:45, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Well, I think the point of the project was to show kids that scientists are just normal people with a cool job, not to convince them to study science some day. MDB (talk) 14:01, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
This guy has some interesting things to say on perceptions of scientists. Sometimes the stereotypes of lab coats and blowing shit up are good, sometimes not. Scarlet A.pngd hominem 15:24, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Not quite sure what the after picture in this one is implying... Scarlet A.pngsshole 15:43, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Dreams, maybe!Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 15:52, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
This one implies that scientists have terrible fashion sense. Hasn't it been illegal to wear sweaters like that since the seventies? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 00:47, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
That.Is.Made.Of.Awesome. --PsyGremlinParla! 15:46, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
This is uber cool. thanks. Sharing on Facebook. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 15:52, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
What field of science involves the most amount of blowing things up? My kid needs to know, not me.--Brendiggg (talk) 15:56, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Mad science. Tell your kid to practice saying things like "Those fools at the university said it couldn't be done, but I've done it! I've done it!", "Igor! Prepare the generator!" and, most important of all, "bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!" MDB (talk) 16:07, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
And lightning bolts. BEHOLD THE POWER!! Scarlet A.pngnarchist 16:14, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
I would give my first born child to own one of those. (Note I want no children at all.) MDB (talk) 16:22, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
But the only purpose in life is to have children. Nihilist (talk) 16:24, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Why not build one then? All you need is a bank of fucking huge capacitors. The rest is pretty simple. (Oh, and don't run it for very long in a built up neighbourhood. They emit very powerful broad spectrum radio static. It's totally illegal to operate one for the most part. The fuzz will probably nick you if they figure out you run it.) --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 19:22, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
You've heard the expression "two left feet" when it comes to people who can't dance? If there was a similar expression for someone who can't do anything mechanical, it would apply to me. MDB (talk) 20:27, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Cackhanded [from dialect cack excrement, from the fact that clumsy people usually make a mess; via Middle Low German or Middle Dutch from Latin cacāre to defecate] Scream!! (talk) 20:34, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

"Last Update: March 2, 2000" Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 20:54, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

This is my favourite. His words are reassuring and he looks exactly like Trent. We should make him our site mascot. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:18, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
I would be very frightened if i met someone who said to me "I am a regular person". ;-) I liked the one that looked like a devil before and after. he was far more boring in the after shot. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 21:53, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Wow, those people at Fermilab sure are boring. Here's a regular day in my lab. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:54, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
I like this description:
A scientist is a person who tries to make the world a better place. A scientist is a person who tries to learn more about the universe and about life, not to make money and to be famous.
Aww! CrundyTalk nerdy to me 09:03, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
I wonder what Andy's homskollars would do with that assignment...
(before the field trip) A scientist is an atheist who uses so-called 'science' to destroy Christianity and promote atheism, homosexuality, relativity, imaginary numbers, and evolution.
(after the field trip) A scientist is an atheist who uses so-called 'science' to destroy Christianity and promote atheism, homosexuality, relativity, imaginary numbers, and evolution. He doesn't walk around in a white coat all day, though. MDB (talk) 13:03, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

American food (fuck yeah)![edit]

Have a laugh and then feel like a bad person. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:50, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

That's not ironic -- that's exactly what you would expect. Nihilist (talk) 21:53, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
It is like a natural disaster... you know it is gonna eventually happen and when it does it is magnificent and horrible at the same time. TheCheatI run on alcohol 14:22, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Birth Control hearing today in the House[edit]

House oversight and reform committe conviend today to decide if "obama overstepped Church v. State" on the whole Birth Control thing. They brought in a pannel of experts. a priest, a rabbi, a reverand and two professors. They were all male of course. (from the article) "Democrats on the panel were told they were allowed only one witness. They selected a young female Georgetown student, Sandra Fluke, who was going to discuss the repercussions of losing contraceptive coverage. But Representative Darrell Issa, the chairman, rejected her as “not qualified.”" Just cause you are the only one of all of us who have every used contraceptives, and the only one of us who can get pregnant - you are clearly unqualified to talk. Hey, that's great! full article Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 22:09, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

HUAC House Committee on Oversight and Government Corruption is just a means for politicians to push their pet agendas? Say it ain't so! I am shocked, shocked, etc. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:45, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Best birth control.jpg
Stupid of Issa; an all-male panel is a very visual thing.--ADtalkModerator 00:17, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
He (issa) had posters of King and Ghandi in the hearing room, and tonite tweeted "We heard from religious leaders who's positions might not be popular, like MLK's position was not popular". Is there a corralary to the Hitler meme of anything bad being associated with hitler, if you associate it with King, it's therefore good? Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 01:54, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Issa shatters irony meters on separation of church and state. Help help, he's bein' repressed! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:37, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

HIV and prejudice[edit]

Is it wrong decline someones advances purely because of there status? AMassiveGay (talk) 00:17, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Not necessarily. Ostracising & stigmaticising somebody socially for having HIV is pretty ignorant, but its reasonable to be a little more cautious about getting involved with them sexually. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 00:24, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
I would go further than "not necessarily" I would give a flat out No. DamoHi 03:48, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
2nd the flat out 'No'. TheCheatI run on alcohol 14:18, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
In fact it would be kind of dickish to lead them on knowing you are never gonna fully accept their advances. Treat them like a rational adult, cut through the bullshit and be honest. This world would be a much easier place to live if people were just honest. TheCheatI run on alcohol 14:19, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
No, especially if they're asking for unprotected sex. Just be polite. MDB (talk) 14:30, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Hey, Twitter can be great sometimes[edit]

After the ongoing controversy on who's behind @Vikileaks (his IP address is somewhere in the House of Commons), #TellVicEverything is trending in Canada and worldwide. Made my day. Osaka Sun (talk) 01:57, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

What the hell happened to your country? Is Harper really destroying everything? Senator Harrison (talk) 12:27, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Everything. Osaka Sun (talk) 14:20, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Multiple page deletion[edit]

Is there a way to remove a page and all its subpages at once? An American Nihilist (talk) 03:03, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

I was sure there was a checkbox somewhere, but it seems it's only for moving the pages. Try a script or something. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 03:25, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Do it old skool CP style, redirect them all to "deleted article." Sophiebecause liberals 09:42, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Restricting the bigots[edit]

I have to say that Trevor Phillips has made my day.  Lily Inspirate me. 13:35, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

I do like the argument he made. And the response, actually. He makes a fairly clear, concise argument for his side and the archbishop's response is "NO. AM CHRISTIAN. DIFFERENT." I would hug that man if I saw him deliver that argument live. Also the comments on the DM site are depressing. X Stickman (talk) 15:41, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Wish you hadn't mentioned the DM, I just had a look and now feel suicidal. Still, I voted all the likes down and the dislikes up. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 18:58, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Damn, Genghis, I wish you hadn't linked that. I just chewed a chunk out of my desk. Sophiebecause liberals 21:53, 17 February 2012 (UTC)


If they ever do a remake of Green Acres, Arianna Huffington should play Lisa.

Seriously, listen to this voice. Can't you imagine it offering to make "Oleever" some "hotscakes"? MDB (talk) 13:40, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

I don't think it's giving too much away to say that I really do live at "Greenacres". Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 14:06, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
The beauty and grace of Eva Gabor would be done no justice by Arianna Huffington. Occasionaluse (talk) 16:02, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
The voice is perfect, though. MDB (talk) 16:06, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
I agree. Occasionaluse (talk) 16:21, 17 February 2012 (UTC)


So the website Natural News is a rising star for bat shit insanity for alties. We are in a great position to offer an antidote as the only high ranking resource that can bring some rationality and scepticism to their site and content. But our article is lacking, I wanted to highlight this as a golden opportunity and encourage anyone interested to head over to the talk page of NaturalNews to start talking about how to expand it, or to just be bold and start editing. Tmtoulouse (talk) 16:42, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

I have had suspicions that Mike Adams or the site in general has some kind of tie to the Co$, but I can't confirm that. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 17:57, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
If I remember rightly, Orac has more than just 'suspicions'. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 21:53, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Let's talk about nice things[edit]

For example, I haven't seen one of those animated banner ads with the flashing lights and stupid games embedded in them in years. Ones with sound have almost gone out as well. That's nice. RachelW (talk) 20:51, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

I see them every so often, but sound ones have vanished--il'Dictator Mikal 21:20, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Advertisements exist on the Internet? I don't really notice with Adblock Plus. Stupid Troll Guy (talk) 21:37, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Sometimes my cat will shit right next to the litter box, even after it has been recently cleaned. I'm pretty sure she does this just to spite me, which I kind of respect. Occasionaluse (talk) 21:41, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
My ferret does the same thing. Pesky varmint. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:06, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
By the way this is going we'll have a RationalWiki Pet Club. Osaka Sun (talk) 23:28, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

So this is going around facebook...[edit]

anyone feel like giving a quick opinion. I'm of the mind it's pretty much, bunk, if only cause #6 says we are "controlling the weather". here.Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 23:13, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Well, the parts about inflation of food prices due to speculation and climate change are generally correct. The part about the sooper seekrit depopulation scheme is not. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:10, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Obama has given the military the "right" to "challenge" Doma[edit]

It's all glass and mirrors, but what it amounts to is this: "the Miliary will no longer support laws that deny gays their equal rights". what laws would those be? :-) Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 02:27, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Denialist document dump[edit]

Get it while it's hot! I'll probably have a look through tomorrow to see if there's any other juicy bits in there. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 09:30, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Wow! That's pretty stunning. (There are some good snippets in the comments for those who don't feel like wading through all those pdfs.) Tetronian you're clueless 13:34, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
So what do we call this one? Climategate 3.0? Denialistgate? Scarlet A.pngd hominem 13:41, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Twitter hastatgs have it at "Deniergate" or "Denialgate." So either/or. Osaka Sun (talk) 14:59, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
My vote is for Denialgate. -- Seth Peck (talk) 16:26, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Update: Carter confirms payment. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:38, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
Heartland responds. Looks like a legal shitstorm could be brewing. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 00:28, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Sounds like hot air. Also, it seems strange that they can claim one document is a fake but the others can't be confirmed about a meeting that happened almost a month ago. Hmmm.... That and a press release telling people to be ashamed is, um, odd. steriletalk 00:42, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
I want to know who the anonymous donor is. Osaka Sun (talk) 07:00, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
The one document is almost certainly a fraud. It was scanned in, rather than printed-to-pdf, like the others; it was created only a few hours before the story broke, unlike the others; the tone and phrasing is different; it contains no new actual information, but is sourced from the others. It's a shame someone tacked on this bit of lousy sabotage, since it taints the otherwise amazing quality of the revelations. But as with so many things, we must admit the wrongdoing while also acknowledging that it's hard to feel bad for a group that's been witchhunting good men like Michael Mann.--ADtalkModerator 23:46, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
The strange thing is it does reference items in the budget, but it also is the source of all the "quote-ables" in it, esp. the "dissuading teachers from teaching science." steriletalk 02:21, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Heartland flack responds and cooks up a conspiracy of his own. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:15, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Kirk Cameron coming to town...[edit]

So Kirk is coming to my neck of the woods in the near future to give a dinner presentation on 'Educating for Eternity'. While I'm mildly interested in hearing what his particular flavor of crazy is, I'm opposed to paying him money for the privilege. I can pay to attend, I can try to crash without paying, or I can just not go at all. If I go, I can be a silent observer or be a pain in the ass. What do folks think?--Martin Arrowsmith (talk) 00:31, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Egg his car! Senator Harrison (talk) 00:56, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
If you pay to attend, you're giving him and/or people associated with him like what, six dollars? Nostalgia Critic (talk) 01:02, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Something like $35 for dinner and Kirk's talk in a hotel conference room. Its a fundraiser for an area Christian elementary school. I'm quite ambivalent about it: I'm idly curious as to what Kirk has to say but I'm not excited about supporting either him or the school financially. I wouldn't drive to the next town over to hear him speak, but this place is only about a mile from my house. Enh. I can't make up my mind.--Martin Arrowsmith (talk) 02:44, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Personally, I wouldn't go. I wouldn't be able to stand the people I would be around or hearing what he had to say. Senator Harrison (talk) 02:49, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
I can almost guarantee that he will not talk about anything in the presentation that he hasn't repeated ad nauseum. Kirk Cameron is among the lowest of the low for intelligence and original thought even for creationists. Consequentially he pretty much parrots long retired arguments that he has heard of other people. If you want to understand what his particular brand of crazy is, watch some youtube videos. Tielec01 (talk) 02:56, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
If you go, make sure to take lots of notes and give a transcript to someplace like the Friendly Atheist blog. I'm on a boat (talk) 03:12, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
If he's only 'preaching to the choir' then I'd ignore it. If there was some kind of real debate where he could end up looking a complete idiot then go and join in. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 10:33, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
People don't usually use school fundraisers to say anything new, so you're not risking missing anything if you don't go. Sophiebecause liberals 20:04, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Ring the local rag and tell them all about it. Tell them that a notorious peddler of rubbish is coming to your town and speaking on behalf of a school. Then point out just how much embracing Cameron's views could cost the school and its supporters by referencing Dover. -- Iscariot Andy Schlafly for Congress 2012! 03:30, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

It's a fundraiser for a private, Christian school, not a public school; Dover doesn't apply. Anyway, you all have convinced me that it's not worth spending any money to hear him speak.--Martin Arrowsmith (talk) 21:22, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

"personhood amendment passed"[edit]

VA has passed to laws. (well, not amendments, but it's late and I'm typically ticked off). One defines a person as having full rights as of the moment of conception. (ladies, you need to make sure you take your monthly pads to the sherriff's office so they can insure that there was no dead zygote there). The second requires the highly invasive vaginal ultrasound before any abortion can take place. EVEN A MEDICAL ONE. Emergency contraception will now be illegal. and if pushed, standard hormonal Birth Control and IUDs will likely be illegal, because of the way they cause miscarriages as one part of the protection. Welcome to teh 1400's ladies. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 05:27, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

So the wingnuts finally got enough momentum to pass one of these? The courts will slap this down eventually but it'll screw over a ton of women in the meantime. Next up: Chastity belt amendments! Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:50, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Zygote == adult human being
Jesus these people are fuck. Fallacy2 (talk) 05:54, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
The did it via the legislature, and not teh voters. cause there are real women voters, 50% or so, and they woudln't take this shit. but there are like 2 women on the Virgina state legislature. Technically now, every single instance of "person" in every law or policy in the entire state applies to fetuses. Tax code, murder code, real estate. It pretty much instantly means any miscarriage is at the least, manslaughter, and depending on what a woman did or didn't do, possibly murder. It also would in effect make everythign from smoking and alcohol use (even a once in a great while thing) to taking actual medication you are prescribed by law, potentially illegal. Cause if you are having sex, you MIGHT get pregnant and not yet know it, and your drugs that you take for thyroid conditions and heart conditions, adn your blood thinners, and your insulin could kill that fetus. which is now a crime. YIPPI. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 06:04, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
How about life insurance? -- Seth Peck (talk) 06:41, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
And it won't last; so the stay in the darkness will be while harsh, brief. --il'Dictator Mikal 06:11, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
"cause there are real women voters, 50% or so"
Wait... women can vote? When did this happen? I think we need to pass a law to amend that. Scream!! (talk) 06:22, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Women voting? what is the world coming to; Next thing they'll want to drive and go out on they're own...--il'Dictator Mikal 06:24, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
After that you'll tell me dots on lumps on their chests aren't obscene devil flesh, and that a woman can enjoy sex without being a horrible person. ... of liberals? (talk) 06:29, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Sex is a sin, and only evil sinful girls get breasts and have they're periods. Now go to you're closet and pray for forgiveness--il'Dictator Mikal 06:32, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
And remember, if you go into a man's world, expect to be raped. (Men can't control themselves, I guess).Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 06:42, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
My appologizes, but i've been trying to confirm this story for about an hour. the House passed it. It looks like it still needs to go to the senate. but no article is really very clear. They just have the headlings "VA passes personhood law". but i don't really think it's over. Sorry for the premature - well, given the topic, premature is quite the term. I'm sure i'll be ranting more when it goes to the Republican controlled senate. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 06:16, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Just because it hasnt passed yet doesnt make the rant any less meaningful. --il'Dictator Mikal 06:18, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
This is equally sickening "Delegates rejected an amendment that would have ensured contraception remains legal once the personhood bill goes into effect.". Someone said "this will not directly effect contraception". so others said "then write that into the law". They said "no". it passed without any exception for birth control. That's probably more telling of their goals than anything. --Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 06:19, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Hey, Indiana Senate Bill 89 got shelved by a republican controlled house after passing a republican controlled senate. There is still hope... maybe. Peter Monomorium antarcticum 06:34, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
That creationist bill makes me so very sad because it was introduced by the guy that represented my district when I lived in Indiana. I've certainly lived in some backwards-ass places... Cow...Hammertime! 16:42, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Once you leave the womb, conservatives don't care about you until you reach military age. Then you’re just what they’re looking for. Conservatives want live babies so they can raise them to be dead soldiers.

Scarlet A.pnggnostic 09:15, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
More like this:

"Because the life of the unborn child is sacred. But once they're born, you're free to beat them. You can starve them. When they turn 18, you can send them to the electric chair or kill them in a war against some starving country that had a massive population explosion because our family values cut off their access to birth control. - Jello Biafra

Recklessly Noise Punk What's this button do? Uh oh.... 13:10, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

I nose some minipax in that wordrow. The Heidelberg Kid (talk) 15:13, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

More cool critters from madagascar![edit]

World's tiniest gecko. [here.Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 02:08, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

IT'S SOOOO CUTEEEE!--Dumpling (talk) 09:25, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Tiny lizards my foot, that's a giant match! Sophiebecause liberals 09:41, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Do you think they're edible? ŴêâŝêîôîďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:55, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
What, giant matches? A bit chewy I'd have thought. Sophiebecause liberals 20:06, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Pretty awesome youtube satirist[edit]

This video had me laughing more than a few times. The user, BillBobNeck, is like a redneck Colbert. He just might be brilliant. Occasionaluse (talk) 17:41, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Does he ever say anything, or give any explicit clues that he is a parodist? He just might be a nincompoop. --DamoHi 03:18, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
No, but he does the exact same thing on stage at comedy clubs, so I'm pretty sure he's just an awesome parodist. Occasionaluse (talk) 13:55, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Homobama Falldownlaugh.gif Scarlet A.pngbomination 13:57, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
I like the "Help me fight the Socialist Redistribution of Wealth! Donate to billybobneck.com" at the end of his videos. Occasionaluse (talk) 14:38, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Peak Fertility or Mount Bullshit?[edit]

HuffPo has an article on another silly peak fertility study. They don't seem to understand the concealed part of "concealed ovulation." Expect this to show up in the next pop evo psych book about how language, literature, and civilization itself was created for the purpose of some dudes gettin' laid. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 19:48, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Fucking bullshit. I have no science to back any of this up but i'm highly dubious men can "pick up" on the fact that we are fertile. hell, I don't know myself half the time. I doubt strongly that being fertile comes with enough of a hormone smell that men get it. There is even a part of me that is dubious about the whole "mimics speech patters'. what does that even mean? they nod and listen more? they say "like, gosh, I was like Totally, like, ubed out" or something? if a woman chooses 1 syllable words, the man follows? Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 20:14, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
I spent a great deal of my undergraduate years working directly under Randy Thornhill and Steve Gangestad at the University of New Mexico (by working under it ranged from getting them a fish sandwich form McDonalds to running hormonal studies, ask me about the Malaysian spit study sometime...). I don't completely buy it but it can't be dismissed out of hand so easily. The evolution of concealed ovulation is unique enough that there had to be an adaptive pressure for it, it is no Gould Spandrel. If, as many have proposed, one of the major adaptive pressures was concealing it from human males then it seems a classic set up for a Red Queen's race between strength of concealment and ability of males to pick up on queues. Tmtoulouse (talk) 20:33, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Or it was the other way around and it was "advertised ovulation" that evolved. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:38, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Well the classic way to examine which is the "ancestral trait" or the "derived trait" would be to setup a tree and see which provides the most parsimonious (least number of independent adaptive changes). I am sure it has been done....Tmtoulouse (talk) 20:40, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
One thing I find odd about the link is they are citing Daly and Wilson in support of their idea, I spent 2 years working with both Margo and Martin here at McMaster and their views are definitely that concealed ovulation is a derived trait. I am not sure which paper (1983) that's being cited. Tmtoulouse (talk) 20:45, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
It looks like a textbook being cited instead of a paper. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 20:52, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
It is an interesting question I will run a lit search later to see if there are more current papers examining this. It's complicated though, how far down the tree do you go? I will poke around. Tmtoulouse (talk) 20:54, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Here's one attempt. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:01, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Here's some other silly "peak fertility" research. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:29, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
I am not gonna argue that there is not a lot of unreplicated, perhaps specious research using this paradigm. But if you want to discount the concept of peak fertility and potential behavioural or psychological changes in response to changes across the fertility cycle it's better to start with the stronger research. Take for example the order studies Thornhill and Gangestad did here. The data that odour preference shifts across cycle has been replicated repeatedly in multiple labs. Tmtoulouse (talk) 02:51, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Obviously peak fertility exists because ovulation actually happens. I'm skeptical that these behavioral "findings" are adaptive in nature, especially because so many spurious results are churned out in this area. Behavioral differences would seem to be more likely in females than males for obvious reasons (contra the HuffPo piece). Also, I don't find studies of undergraduate students to be very convincing in terms of evolutionary arguments -- is there any cross-cultural replication of those scent results? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:26, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Well that's the problem of scientific validity and the dirty little secret of all experimental psychology. I believe Gangestad and uhhhhh god what was her name, the anthropologist....she was really hot and bought me beer all the time.........they did some field studies let me look. Tmtoulouse (talk) 03:29, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Rucas! That's who it was with the Tsimane Indians...but I can't find anything published from it so nevermind. Regardless though the far more interesting point of this conversation is spandrels. Lets move on to that. Tmtoulouse (talk) 03:50, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Adaptation vs. Spandrels[edit]

You seem to be circling around the Lewontin, Gould criticism based on the concept of spandrels. For those not familiar with the the idea, a architecture has often relied on arches for support and infrastructure, when you place two arches next to each other you form a little V shape area. This space is often decorated elaborately. If you were to take a superficial look at it you might propose that the V shape spandrel was purposefully designed, rather than an unintentional artifact of the choice of the use of arches as the support infrastructure. Lewontin and Gould argue that it is all but impossible to tell the difference between a spandrel like trait and a trait that emerged because of adaptive pressure through natural or sexual selection. Is this a fair summary of your criticism? Tmtoulouse (talk) 03:50, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

I am predisposed to "spandrel" explanations because chance is often a more parsimonious explanation, though I don't think spandrels and adaptations are as difficult to differentiate as Gould and Lewontin believe(d). Essentially, I'm in agreement with Williams: "Evolutionary adaptation is a special and onerous concept that should not be used unnecessarily, and an effect should not be called a function unless it is clearly produced by design and not by chance." The problem with many evo psych hypotheses is that they have not even been tested in cultures outside the US or the Anglophone world, which is obviously a severe blow to universality, not to mention an adaptive explanation for such effects (esp. when the effects are not even that large). Even if universality can be established, this also does not necessitate an adaptive function. In brief, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and I don't see that the evidence has been anywhere close to extraordinary. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:11, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
I would argue that the claims aren't particularly extraordinary either. I am sympathetic to the approach Buss uses for determining adaptations vs. spandrels, exadaptation, drift, or whatever. Mostly focusing on functionality and specificity. Perhaps it might be worthwhile to identify some ev psyh hypotheses that you might find acceptable. What about waist-to-hip ratio preferences of attractiveness? That has shown very robust cross-cultural effect. Tmtoulouse (talk) 05:23, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Really? WHR is one of the claims I've found to be the silliest coming from the EP crowd as anyone can tell you that beauty standards are heavily culturally and historically contingent. WHR has also failed to show universality (e.g. Yu and Shepard 1998, Marlowe et al 2005). EP is much more useful when we have converging lines of evidence such as in memory psychology -- we have data from genetics, neuroscience, phylogeny (e.g., comparisons of hippocampal structure), and behavioral studies. Something like Sherry and Schacter's classic 1987 paper on memory systems is a good example of the rigor that much of what passes for EP lacks. My position is much closer to the "weak adaptationism" laid out in Atran 2005. Speaking of Buss and Gould/Lewontin, the former's approach is unassailable in theory, but in practice often works out the way the latter predicted: "Rather, you acknowledge the rival but circumscribe its domain of action so narrowly that it cannot have any importance in the affairs of nature. Then, you often congratulate yourself for being such an undogmatic and ecumenical chap." Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:25, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Being a YEC/BL isn't Easy[edit]

When you are a person who considers themselves a logical person... and you accept the basis for ideas or theories you should be denying. I can vaguely believe and speak ideas of the universe being 13.7 Bil, the Earth being 4.6, species coming and going, ect. Like you really have no idea at all what it's like in my head sometimes. And then theres just my own feelings with my religion... supposed to make me feel good? No. Not at all. I feel condemned and judged every moment because I don't feel myself measuring up. Theres a reason i liked that Carrie quote, i understand it completely. Just me posting this somewhere besides a notepad. --il'Dictator Mikal 01:59, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Wait, YEC as in Young Earth Creationism? What is BL? Is that a bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich hold the tomato? Nebuchadnezzar (talk)
Mikilos is a Biblical Literalist YEC, IIRC. ArchieGoodwin (talk) 02:28, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
you didnt know that already?--il'Dictator Mikal 03:13, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
If you vaguely belief in an old universe, how or why are you YEC? WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 12:42, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
I'm sure that you're a BL because that is how you've been indoctrinated brought up. You're probably old enough now to take a long hard look at exactly what it is that you believe and why. Remember that it's only a book which was written by men.  Lily Inspirate me. 13:29, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
But it's not, it's the inspired word of God. Scarlet A.pngnarchist 13:34, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Have a chat with the barmaid Scarlet A.pngtheist 13:39, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Even if it was the inspired word of God it was still fallible men who wrote it down, transcribed it and translated it. Chinese whispers anyone?  Lily Inspirate me. 16:02, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
But if God inspired it, wouldn't he make sure that the people got it down right? When I was a Christian, that's what I always thought. Stupid Troll Guy (talk) 17:35, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
A lot of clauses in statements of faith and doctrinal bases state that it is the infallible Word of God. There's no possibility of fallible human influence or even "Chinese whispers" in the translation from God to Man - that's removed by definition. The upside from the point of view of religion (but the downside from a human rationality perspective) is that there is Absolutely No Possibly Way to disprove the Bible from within that framework. Just as all roads lead to Rome, so all evidence leads to "The Bible is True", which makes it pretty useless as a belief because you're defining your own reality. Scarlet A.pngsshole 21:13, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

The fact that your openly struggling with the dichotomy is a good sign. You're still young and it often takes time to break free of your upbringing and establish your own ideas and identity. Have a re-read of RationalWiki Atheism FAQ for the Newly Deconverted, hopefully it will give you a bit of moral support. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 20:41, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

for now, im going with something along the lines of Ietsisme, whether this feeling something is there or not isd really a feeling or my mind still being used to thinking the same way for 14 years is to be determined.

bible economics[edit]

Do we have, or want to do something on the trend of "bible economics". if you odn't know what it is, it's at the bottom of this page.Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 02:51, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Christian economics, though it's very stubby. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 03:11, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
I've come across Biblical Capitalism recently. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 08:39, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
Oh Jesus Christ. Where are they supposed to quote mine "Kill the Poor" values in the Bible? Because it certainly won't be in the gospels. Osaka Sun (talk) 08:51, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Talked about this with Godot a few days earlier[edit]

After the Tories' brouhaha (and backtracking) on gay couples outside Canada, now they can't get the divorce loophole closed properly. These are the times where I wish there was some sort of international marriage law. Osaka Sun (talk) 09:27, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

I don't think that would allow you to marry your 12-year old niece/cousin.  Lily Inspirate me. 10:12, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Why I'm glad I live in a 3rd World Country part 2[edit]

So since the new government has come in, religious instruction in schools has gone from compulsory to optional (but all-inclusive if it is done), abortion on demand is available, gay marriage is allowed, there's an element of gun control (sadly the wrong people are having their guns controlled, but it's a start), there's talk of a national health scheme and national pensions scheme. And you know what?

The sun still comes up in the morning. --PsyGremlinSermā! 14:55, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Moron, if you would let the free market take over, the sun will come up twice as fast and twice as often! Government can't do anything right! RachelW (talk) 15:51, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

Oklahoma Senate passes personhood act[edit]

Not to be outdone in the Rabid Nutjob land, OK senators passed the personhood bill 34 to 8. Like last night's VA bill, i can't tell if the house has passed it or not. (why would articles give such useful information?). That said, this is two chambers in as many days that think a ZYGOTE, not even a fetus is as important as a born woman. by the way, there is no rape exception. --godot

theyd love it here in nebraska, only have to pass one chamber. --il'Dictator Mikal 04:29, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
America - ruled by some of the finest minds of the 13th century. --PsyGremlinKhuluma! 04:38, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
I simply cannot understand this "war against women". I don't even know where it flaired up from. I have always had safe, legal access to birth control and abortion, at least by the time I started having sex. I can't even imagine a real person saying "birth control shouldn't be legal", yet here they are... saying it. LIke the VA situation, the legislture was asked to put in two riders, one for a rape exception, and one for an exception for hormonal birth control. Both were simply turned down without comment. Yet they say "It's not about making BC illegal". it if wasn't, why not add the rider? Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 04:47, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
It'll be interesting to see just how many women are in these two legislatures and who, if any, voted for the measures. I'm sure these will be taken straight to the SC and will die there, but it's still a very scary chapter in US history. --PsyGremlinПоговорите! 04:54, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
will any of this survive a supreme court challange ? I know quite a few women who would vote for this. Hamster (talk) 05:13, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
When a bunch of similar legislation hits state legislatures like this, you can bet someone out there in Wingnuttia is pulling the strings. In this case, we don't have to guess, it's Americans United for Life and they're damned proud of it. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:18, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Also, I would not be surprised at all if this passes in OK but not VA. Recall that this is the state that elected James Inhofe and passed a "Sharia Law Amendment." Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:30, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Can it pass the supreme court? Depends on who is on the bench. The entire legal point of this legislation is that it bypasses much of the arguments made in Roe v. Wade, which is premised on the fact that a fetus has no rights to life. if you legislate it as having rights, then you shift the argument to "who's rights are more important". so of course things like "health of mother" will justify an abortion, but it becomes a real question if generic "i just dont' want to be pregnant" would justify an abortion, legally. That's going to be hard to prove. If a fetus has rights, then who decides what is the controlling right. Right now, the current bench will find SOMETHING to overturn this. but you have 4 staunch conservatives who don't give a shit about precident law. all you need is one more. and women will be, as they say, fucked. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 05:46, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
No idea, not exactly a legal mind. I wouldn't expect this to be the last bill proposed, though. I'm sure there's a whole wave of them ready to go. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 06:06, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
What I'd like to see is somebody propose, to the next state that tables this, that an amendment be added, forcing women to wear bhurkas, because they're being treated the same way. --PsyGremlinParla! 10:31, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
It's all unfinished business from Roe v Wade IMO. Every country has some of these decisions on the books. A legal fiction gets created which delivers the right answer for all the wrong reasons and no-one wants to go back and revisit. The result is that it unravels, because even those who support the outcome don't support the logic. Sorry Godot, and hundreds of millions of American women, it will probably be a long hard fight, but make sure this time they don't fudge it. You want a decision that gets to the heart of things and says what it means. Access to safe, legal abortion to be guaranteed by the federal government. If it takes a constitutional amendment, or a US Supreme Court decision (and I mean one like Brown v Board of Education that isn't afraid to say what it means, not Roe v Wade) then that's what it takes. Nothing else will stop this from keep bubbling to the surface. (talk) 11:11, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
The issue with Roe Vs Wade was also privacy. These laws seem to get right in between a woman, her doctor, and her own liberty. Ergo, unconstitutional. I'm not worried. Senator Harrison (talk) 12:26, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Glad you're not. the problem is there is no right to privacy in the consituation. I think that's what BON was trying to say. It was "crafted" logic. everyone know X was wrong, and they "invented" a reason it was wrong. It will all come down to who is on the bench when these things are tried. Pink mowse.pngGodotGrow a vagina 14:11, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
On behalf of Europe I would like to apologise for sending most of our religious nutters to the other side of the Atlantic. Honestly, it really seemed like a good idea at the time but we now see the downside of concentrating them all in one place. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you.Moderator 14:19, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
Why apologise? America is a Land Of OpportunityTM for religious nutters. If they didn't want all of them, they wouldn't make 'em feel so welcome. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 15:58, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

@Godot: One of the arguments from the SCOTUS in favor of abortion rights was the invasion of privacy between a woman and her doctor. It infringes on liberty, which is guaranteed in the constitution. Senator Harrison (talk) 20:11, 18 February 2012 (UTC)

The point of the Personhood bills is to trump that. You can't kill people and then say "I did it privately, so it's none of the government's business, this trial is an infringement of my liberty". By making a zygote (or a felt hat, or a pack of cards) a person, they demand that the court either reject their Humpty Dumpty antics outright or else find some better reason for its decision. It should do the former of course, but it may not be inclined to and that's why Godot is concerned. The long term fix is to create a society where ordinary people believe in a right to choose, so that judges (who are, ultimately, just more ordinary people) will see it as inherently unjust to forbid abortion, let alone contraception. But Americans do not live in that society. (talk) 11:42, 19 February 2012 (UTC)