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Kels' turn for a computer question[edit]

I'm getting a new HD to replace mine which is getting a little cramped (also it's about 4 years old), but the thing is it's four times the size of my old one. I'm never gonna use that for just program files and all my media is on a 3TB external, so I thought I'd divide it in half and do a Win 7/Linux dual-boot. So here's my question, what sort of Linux should I put on it? I'm not a very technical version, so something that requires too much time under the hood would frustrate me. However, I don't mind a little of that in a good cause. I used to use Linux up until about 6 or 7 years ago when I switched, but things have progressed a lot since then both in the OS/desktop and the amount of help and solutions you can get online so having a nearby techie is less necessary. Back when I did use it regularly, it was stuff like Red Hat (I started with 5.2, but 6.0 came out right after so it was only a matter of weeks), Mandrake, Slackware and OpenSuse. So none of this is going to be 100% new to me.

Any recommendations for someone like me? Again, I'd like something with as little need to go into terminal as I can get away with. --Kels (talk) 19:01, 8 March 2014 (UTC)

I would recommend Ubuntu. It's probably the most popular of the Linux distributions out there, and it has decent software development at the moment (comparatively). I have yet to find a Linux distribution that's more user-friendly in all of my searching. - Grant (Talk) 19:09, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
EC Ubuntu is prolly still the most user-friendly. Lubuntu I like because it's less resource-hungry and comes with the LXDE shell that can kinda look like XP if you want it to. TeenageWasteland (talk) 19:11, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
Plain ordinary Ubuntu is fine for everyday home use, although I find its DVD handling a bit temperamental. I have to resort to the dreaded VLC (visible line count) to watch stuff. On the other hand, that could just be my ancient Dell. SophieWilderModerator 20:14, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
As others have managed to point out, Ubuntu is the distribution usually recommended for people who are allergic to CLI. An important note is that they have they own idiosyncratic (and controversial) desktop environment, Unity, which is built on top of Gnome 3. There are also a number of semi-official "remixes" with different default desktop environments and applications - Kubuntu (with KDE)seems to be the most popular/intensively maintained after the "straight" Ubuntu, and there are also Xubuntu (with XFCE) and Lubuntu (with LXDE), which are supposed to be somewhat more lightweight and suitable for older machines.--ZooGuard (talk) 20:28, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
It's also possible to ditch Unity without relying on a remix; or at least it was back when I was running Precise Pangolin and later Raring Ringtail. Depending on the version, it may be necessary to download a couple of things, but I managed to make the change to a more pleasant UI just using the base distribution. - Grant (Talk) 21:01, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
Yes, there are meta-packages for each desktop environment, so it's possible to switch the default distro to Gnome 3 or KDE with just the package manager. Completely getting rid of the old configuration in such cases may be a problem, though.--ZooGuard (talk) 21:13, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
I've heard good things said of Mint Linux, which is a Ubuntu derivative. However, I've never used it. Entered from a Debian Linux box, and Ubuntu is Debian derivative. CS Miller (talk) 21:55, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
My experience with Mint is that if the setup goes smoothly, it's great (nice and slim, for example). I've also heard of a few folks who beat their heads off of a wall trying to get it working in the first place, so that might be a consideration. I haven't used it myself, so I'm hesitant to pass judgment either way. - Grant (Talk) 22:08, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
There's also Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE), which is rolling releaseWikipedia (which means you don't have to reinstall every few months, as is usual with Linux distros). However, LMDE is apparently not as user-friendly as mainstream Linux Mint.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 08:36, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

So okay, I've got that some flavour of Ubuntu is the best way to go, which is awesome since I was playing around with the original recipe on a USB stick last night (you can't do much with an 8GB stick though). The question at this point becomes, which version? By the looks of things (and a quick peek at Google) it seems like a pain trying to get Gnome 3 as the desktop environment. That's a shame since I used Gnome and later Gnome 2 when I was running Linux before so it would have been nice to see the new version. I can't say Unity looked awful when I was trying it out but what's KDE like? I haven't tried that one at all, so if it's a step above Unity then maybe Kubuntu is the way for me. --Kels (talk) 00:00, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

It's not as hard as it seems to get Gnome 3 going on Ubuntu, but Kubuntu isn't a bad choice either. Unity is okay if you're a fan of what Apple has been doing lately with OSX, but I'm not a fan myself. - Grant (Talk) 01:34, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
I have been greatly enjoying Xubuntu. You can install all the GNOME crap you like with it, but only the GNOME crap you like - David Gerard (talk) 11:30, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
There exists a Gnome 2 fork called MATE: http://mate-desktop.org/ Bismarck (talk) 11:29, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Hackintosh partition. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 15:22, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Is that legal? Bismarck (talk) 16:14, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Who me? I have no idea. I was just typing the word out. Hackintosh is apparently something people do. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 20:38, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

MRA and SNL[edit]

Anyone catch Saturday Night Live this week? I only mention it because they had a (mediocre) sketch making fun of MRAs, which I can't recall ever having seen addressed in in such a mainstream comedic format before. Or has it happened and I've missed it? It seems MRAs generally fly under the radar if you're not visiting the right parts of the internet, or am I wrong? DickTurpis (talk) 23:21, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

Depends on what you define as "right", Richard, my boy. --The Madman (talk) 00:32, 11 March 2014 (UTC)The Madman
I watched about 2 mediocre minutes then went to bed. That show, despite its hype, is predictably bad. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:36, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

New Cosmos[edit]

Everyone knows this already, but the new Cosmos premieres tomorrow. Who's excited?--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 22:43, 8 March 2014 (UTC)

Early reviews have been unanimously positive. And why not introduce Giordano Bruno to US audiences? Osaka Sun (talk) 00:58, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
Well I was thoroughly satisfied.--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 03:59, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Damn I missed it and apparently it's not on the utubes :( ħumanUser talk:Human 03:28, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Is this the one with Seth MacFarlane? Because, if so… win. MESSIAH OF DOOM A sea on earth is a sea of tears Dolan.png 10:26, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

Asbestos denialism[edit]

I came across a site once claiming that asbestos was harmless, but I can't for the life of me find it again. I think the guy who wrote it said he was a "natural carpenter" or something...--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 07:45, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

Asbestos is a harmless naturally occurring mineral unless you breathe it in. Alas, it turns out to be pretty difficult to avoid breathing tiny pieces of it while mining it out of the ground, installing it into people's houses and cars, and then doing DIY tasks in the houses and cars. Also because it's a natural mineral it won't go away, we were never making it so ceasing to use it means it'll just stay where it was, in the ground, including in a few places the ordinary soil farmers grow crops in.
I think I've seen sites claiming only one or two kinds of asbestos (as a naturally occurring mineral it comes in various types) are actually dangerous. In the event they're right that wouldn't constitute denialism of course. Over-reactions do happen and then later get undone. For example, decades after it was banned outright for causing birth defects Thalidomide is now a prescription drug again, it's a perfectly reasonable choice of drug if you're definitely not pregnant e.g. because you don't have a womb. Tialaramex (talk) 08:41, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
All forms of mined asbestos material (all asbestos) form those fibers. People who are exposed to asbestos for longer periods of time invariably become ill, that makes it harmful in the carpenting context. Denying that and calling yourself a "natural carpenter" reeks of denialism. Saying "the dose makes the poison, it can be harmless within limits!" is like saying that smoking is harmless if you don't do it very often. That's missing the point that smoking is actually harmful, and so is asbestos. Even if you "safely" contain or structure the material while using it to build you still risk it becoming a potential hazard later on due to deterioration. Nullahnung (talk) 10:10, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
Asbestos is particularly hazardous if you smoke. Note the asbestos scare came the same time as lots and lots of people smoked. But yeah, it's bad for nonsmokers too. - David Gerard (talk) 11:33, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
I lost an uncle to mesothelioma. He had been a civil engineer, and spent some time around the making of asbestos-reinforced concrete. There was never any doubt that his asbestos exposure prompted his cancer. IT FUCKING KILLED HIM. There was plenty of time for the family to say goodbye, but that doesn't make anything better. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 13:39, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
Asbestos was initially touted as a mircalce fibre, since it was heat and acid-resistant, an excellent insulant and could be woven into material. As such it received widespread use. One interesting appliance came in the form of asbestos gloves, used to exchange overheated barrels on machine guns. Anyway, exposure to asbestos, poses a serious health risk and the resulting health condition, asbestosis, has been diagnosed since around 1900. Lung cancer from asbestosis has been registered as an occupational disease since about the 1940s. But it took well into the 1990s for regulations to come into effect, simply due to lobbying by industries, which wouldn't want to lose their supposed miracle stuff. Christopher Booker, regular crank peddler for British tabloids, is an asbestos advocate (and global warming denier, among other things), so one of his articles might be the one you have come across. This one here even mentions a carpenter: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1446248/Christopher-Bookers-notebook.html - Bismarck (talk) 11:42, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
I just don't get people like Booker. Such a waste of talent and wit. Except possibly for the thrill or notoriety of being anti-establishment and selling a few books, I can't see the motivation. Ajkgordon (talk) 14:02, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Creativity and sanity aren't really close relatives; in fact they might not even be on speaking terms. It should be noted that Booker's science skepticism is usually aimed at very prominent topics. He could've led a journalistic crusade against, for example, the low-mass WIMP particle hypothesis on dark matter, and not have made an outright fool out of himself for a change. But the public generally doesn't lose their biscuits over dark matter. As such, his motivation for tackling topics already bloated to scaremongering proportions* by his journalistic cohorts might be a bit more obvious. After all, he's not going to be held accountable for when a naive home owner dies from asbestosis or when Bangladesh drowns in a flood. (* Global warming is a serious problem, but the media certainly has not helped with their apocalyptic prognoses in the past.) Bismarck (talk) 15:07, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
"Creativity and sanity aren't really close relatives; in fact they might not even be on speaking terms." I laughed and thought out loud on that one. Damn it should be an article title, but I can't figure out how. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:33, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Ian Plimer has been pushing this stuff for a while. Even better is that he denies that white asbestos is actually asbestos. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 12:56, 11 March 2014 (UTC)


Bomb Moscow! Everyone else: Oh yes, see how far that will get you. Osaka Sun (talk) 19:37, 1 March 2014 (UTC)

So here's what I think will happen. Russia will occupy the Crimea (at least) and the EU and the US will run around wringing their hands. I mean - what are they going to do?
In point of fact the Crimea was given to the Ukraine by Stalin when they were all happy members of the Soviet Union and the possibility of the Ukraine turning into a truly independent country never occurred to anybody. And that explains why there are so many Russians in the Crimea.
No "the". It's Ukraine. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:28, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
When the inconceivable divorce occurred Russia was in no state to ask for the wedding present back - they were failing apart themselves at the end of the cold war. But now that the Ukraine is politically weak and Putin is driving Russia they have the opportunity to fix things again.
Is anybody in the west really going to stand up for the Ukrainian nationalist protesters? And the situation is further confused by the fact that many of the most active Ukrainian protesters seem to be unapologetic Nazis. --Coffee (talk) 20:31, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
I can't believe we're discussing the possibility of war in Crimea this year. I just hope the Archduke stays out of Sarajevo this summer. TeenageWasteland (talk) 20:36, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Nice one, silly username! ħumanUser talk:Human 02:29, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
Well, Russia would probably leave Crimea if Ukraine's government bowed to them deep enough. However Western Ukraine doesn't really even want Crimea, so there is little chance of that happening. On the whole the invasion has went swimmingly, and will make a nice feather for Putin's cap. --Someon (talk) 20:51, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Russia will do, what Russia always has done in its former client states. Prop up an "Independence movement" that only her, and Belarus recognize in perpetually because if there's one thing Russia does best, its never learning from history. --Revolverman (talk) 20:59, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
"Many of the most active Ukranian protesters seem to be unapologetic Nazis." Bullshit. They're there, but have little to no power. Osaka Sun (talk) 21:04, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
They seem significant to me. --Coffee (talk) 21:46, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
The far-right flared up as a reaction to the January anti-protest laws; the fact that the Right Sector tried to stir up shit (and failed) about the agreement that restored the constitution, led Yanukovych to ultimately flee, and allowed the formation of the current liberal/centre-right government should tell you something. And that they are supporting a movement that, at its very heart, wants to join an anti-nationalist union.
If they had any substantial influence we'd be already in a full-blown war. (A war, because of the historical significance of Ukraine, that would be quite damaging to Putin.) Osaka Sun (talk) 22:14, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
UPDATE: If you wanted more proof, Ukraine just made one of its (Jewish) business oligarchs the governor of the economically-vital Dnipropetrovsk province. I do agree with you that the wingnuts will need to be isolated, regardless. Osaka Sun (talk) 06:45, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
Can you confirm you understand the difference between the following: 1. "Many of the most active Ukrainian protesters seem to be unapologetic Nazis." 2. "All of the Ukrainian protesters are unapologetic Nazis."
Although we would like to think that things are black and white with good guys and bad guys the world is always more complex. For example many of the people fighting against the repressive regime in Syria are supporters of Al Qaeda affiliates.--Coffee (talk) 07:54, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
It needs saying that the Crimea was part of Russia until 1954. SophieWilderModerator 21:24, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Can that truely be a factor though? I mean until 1914, it was ALL Russia. --Revolverman (talk) 21:29, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
You mean it was part of Russia or controlled by the Russian empire? It was controlled by the USSR for a long time too. At the end of the day the problem is the ethnic Russians in Sudetenland The Crimea.--Coffee (talk) 21:52, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Thats what I mean, Ukraine as its own country unto itself is only what? 25 years old now? It seems pointless to aruge about what is and what isn't "truly" part of it. --Revolverman (talk) 22:09, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
The Russian Empire/USSR have fucked around with the population of many of their client states and ethnic Russians are significant minorities in virtually all of them, so that there is ample excuse for Russia to intervene wherever they want. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. Moderator 07:36, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
Those people, the Russians in those countries, still deserve rights, though. What the USSR did isn't their fault, after all. Also, Ukraine was part of Russia (i.e., the Russian SFSR) before it was gifted by Chruchev (an Ukrainian) to the Ukraine (i.e., the Ukrainian SSR). Before that, historically, it was never part of Ukraine. Historically, only what's nowadays northern Ukraine was Ukrainian. What's now Southern Ukraine was "New Russia", a steppeland where every horse nomads going Europe's way went through until the Russian Empire conquered it and gave it that name. But since Ukraine was next door, it was mostly settled by Ukrainians, and that is how it stayed. But this isn't true of Crimea, which was instead settled by Russians from the beginning, at the same time as Ukrainians settled "New Russia", and historically until 1954 Crimea had never been part of Ukraine. The ethnic composition of Crimea has fuck all to do with the USSR. Octo8 (talk) 21:56, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
Crimea was it's own independent state before 1783 as the Crimean Khanate, but no one is talking about allowing them to have their own truly independent country. For Russia, it isn't about the rights of the people of the Crimea, it is all about having a warm water port that has direct access to the Mediterranean. The ethnic composition of Crimea has a ton to do with the USSR. On May 18th, 1944, almost the entire population of the Tatars (the historic population) were forcibly deported in the "Sürgün" (Crimean Tatar for exile) to Central Asia by Stalin as a collective punishment for percieved collaboration with the Nazis during the latter's occupation of the peninsula. Russian immigrants were sent in to fill the void. Tartars weren't allowed back until the USSR collapsed.--BMcP - Just an astronomy guy 22:06, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
I'm becoming really fed up with western reporting of those events. It's one-sided to the point of nearly being propaganda (in effect, that is - I know there isn't one big conspiracy to control all media). I mean, with parties with Svobodna in the new government, who are outright fascists, what would happen if the Russian troops left now, hm? How long would there still be an Autonomous Republic of Crimea still? What would prevent Ukrainian troops from moving in to that end? Also, western media never mention what immediately preceded the troubles on the Crimea: That being the rescinsion of the minority rights law by the new government. And while territorial integrity is nice and well, it doesn't mean a country can do with its minorities as it pleases. Yes, Russian troops should leave the country again... but not before the minority law (which stated that in region of at least 10% Russophones, Russian shall be official language besides Ukrainian, which is reasonable) is reinstated and Crimean autonomy guaranteed. Russia has a right to defend the essential rights of its ethnic compatriots in the Ukraine. Octo8 (talk) 21:56, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
"Russia has a right to defend the essential rights of its ethnic compatriots in the Ukraine." Uh... I'm fairly sure it DOESN'T have the right to attack a sovereign nation and occupy part of it in "defense of its ethnic compatriots", more so when most of them are there because Stalin evicted the people who lived there first and moved Russians in afterwords. --Revolverman (talk) 00:21, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
That is not true, see above, and second, even if it were, it would hardly be those people's fault. They deserve minority protection regardless, and should not be forced into a coercive Ukrainification process. Octo8 (talk) 00:27, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
Then what about the minority of the pro-Ukrainian people in the Crimea who likely dont want to go back to Russia, and AGAIN, Russia has NO right to do this no matter how many people want do split from Ukraine. This would be like if the US occupied Quebec in the 70s at the height of the FLO crisis. --Revolverman (talk) 00:36, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
Russia has a better track record of minority rights than the Ukraine. In an autonomous Crimea as part of Russia, the Ukrainians and Tatars there would get at least nominal language recognition, just as the ethnicities in the various other autonomous republics inside the Russian Federation do.Octo8 (talk) 08:26, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
the fact we have an entire article, sorted by country, on the process of turning a people russian, disagrees with you. --Mikal | lakiM 15:05, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
"We" don't, Wiki does. And of course Russification exists. But currently, the Russian Federation at least nominally recognized other languages as official in certain regions of its territory where there are considerable minorities. How far this recognition goes de facto is another question, but that is at least more than can currently be said about the Ukraine. Also, very mature of you to pile mini-blocks on me. Octo8 (talk) 15:23, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
So when russia, in the past, either forcibly moved russians into countries (creating our new big minorities) or forcibly made people learn russian (that bilingual statisyou wanna defend), its acceptable to now invade the countries when they want to reverse some of the russification? --Mikal | lakiM 15:43, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
So your solution to the use of fore is... to use more force? What Russia did is hardly the fault of the national Russians now living in Crimea or East Ukraine. You're thinking only in terms of big blobs on the map it seems, not in terms of actual people. I'm not supporting Russophone minority rights in Ukraine or Crimean autonomy for the benefit of Russia, but for the benefit of the people living there. That's what matters: The people. Individuals. Not nations or states. Octo8 (talk) 15:55, 3 March 2014 (UTC)

"They deserve minority protection regardless, and should not be forced into a coercive Ukrainification process." Ummm. They were already citizens of a sovereign Ukraine, and had been since Ukraine became independent. What "process" are you referring to? It's not like Ukraine decided overnight to absorb them into the country. They were already part of the country. Ethnic allegiance is not a reasonable grounds for armed intervention, especially when there has been no demonstrated attempt to oppress an ethnic group. There's no way Russia's violation of Ukraine's sovereignty passes any stink test of international law. TeenageWasteland (talk) 05:53, 3 March 2014 (UTC)

Yes, they're Ukrainian citizens. That in itself doesn't mean much, because as you say, that was just part of the process of how the USSR split up. Citizenship is just an administrative technicality. It is not the same as nationality (i.e., national identity and allegiance). Ukrainification would mean a process to turn the Russian national minority inside the Ukraine culturally and identity-wise into Ukrainians, which is likely to happen if they have to lean Ukrainian in order to do official business. Considering how Russian is the majority language of half the country, they shouldn't need to. Octo8 (talk) 08:26, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
What is "Ukranification," and what concrete steps have been taken to bring it about? TeenageWasteland (talk) 14:36, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
I just said that, no? The fact that even though Russian is the majority language in half the country, so, essentially the language of half the country, people still need to learn Ukrainian for official matters, officially even for schools and so on. Russian, the natural language of the people in East Ukraine, is this way replaced with Ukrainian, whether the people there want it or not. Octo8 (talk) 14:49, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
you... do know how so many russians got into these places, right? And are you REALLY defending -russia- as a place of respect for minorities and freedom? Really? --Mikal | lakiM 15:04, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
On the Crimea they've always been there. Not that it matters how they got there, not at all. They simply lived in their country, then the USSR, when it broke down and they suddenly, with no real input of their own, became citizens of Ukraine. If Ukraine doesn't want a bilingual states, it should give up those territories. But if it wants those territories, they should be bilingual. Octo8 (talk) 15:16, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
So, by your logic, armed violence and the violation of state sovereignty is a valid reason for national language policy. So when do we invade Quebec, then? TeenageWasteland (talk) 15:18, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
also, can you please link to actual analyses from half-way decent sources talking about the kind of things these Russian-speaking Ukraninans are dealing with? The circumstances that warrant the use of armed force? TeenageWasteland (talk) 15:20, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
Finally, which statute of international law authorizes the use of armed force as a first response to a nation's cultural and linguistic policies? TeenageWasteland (talk) 15:25, 3 March 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── The people living in Crimea don't have a say. Sevastopol is of great strategic importance to Russia and Putin's intent on controlling the port is stronger than the West's support for Ukraine. That is the reality and the ethnic Russians in Crimea are only a playing ball like the ethnic Germans were in Sudetenland. As in 1938 the West is not going to war over that. As opposed to 1938 however, I do not believe Putin wants to occupy the whole of Ukraine, because that would be a much more serious provocation and a World War today would be disastrous for all parties involved (and even some non-involved ones). As the recent turmoil has shown, the majority of East and South Ukraine wants to be closer aligned to Russia, whereas West and North Ukraine wants closer ties with Europe. Provided freedom of movement is retained between the parts, I don't think splitting off the majority Russian areas is that problematic. Actually starting a war over it would be worse (see Yugoslavia). That's why neither the USA nor the EU are threatening with military intervention; and Putin knew this in advance. Bismarck (talk) 12:19, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

Is there a reason Putin couldn't come up with something closer to the formula chosen by the US and UK in this sort of situation? They both needed strategic military bases in places that don't make sense as parts of the empire, so they pay people off. Thousand year lease, that sort of thing. Or is that how Sevastopol worked before, and now Putin thinks the local problems are out of hand and Sevastapol is in jeopardy despite paying the locals off so he's going to put Russia's thumb firmly on the scales? Tialaramex (talk) 22:40, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I don't think the Sevastopol base was ever in danger (also, Sevastopol base does make sense - building up an equivalent base at the Russian Black Sea coast would be way too expensive). I don't think the new government would have dared to touch the lease that goes until 2042, after all. Maybe I'm underestimating the hawks' influence in the new Ukrainian government, or maybe I'm underestimating Putin's paranoia, but I genuinely don't think it's about Sevastopol. The whole Ukraine crisis has seen so many turns and surprises that I don't think anybody, neither USA nor European states nor Russia, has any sort of longterm plan in this. I think Putin just acted after pro-Russian protesters occupied the Crimean parliament at Simferopol, and first send in unmarked troops, and later the regular troops. IMO, maybe a bit of a mix of opportunism and genuine nationalist sympathy with the Crimea Russians.
Like Bismarck, I don't think Putin will invade Ukraine "proper". He most certainly won't try to topple the new government. I think his aims are exactly what the upcoming Crimean referendum is about: Maximum autonomy for autonomy while it nominally stays part of Ukraine. Naturally, the newly super-autonomous Crimea would then remain a close partner of Moscow, if only to thwart any designs Kiev might have. Octo8 (talk) 22:51, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
It was gifted by Khrushchev, not Stalin, in 1954. Also how did you translate that tweet into "bomb Moscow!"?--BMcP - Just an astronomy guy 21:58, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

Putin's Iraq?[edit]

Multiple political analysts are discussing the possibility. Really. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:10, 2 March 2014 (UTC)

Out of all those links, barely any mention of Iraq (the Colin Powell quote). This isn't Putin's Iraq unless he invades the entire Ukraine, which isn't going to happen. SophieWilderModerator 11:01, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
great thread, a great read. I knew two women from Ukraine, who busted over to here as soon as they could. They suffered a lack of indefinite articles. Fuck Russia and Putin. Let him improve his own country and leave the rest of Eurasia alone for now. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:40, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
Protip: You keep saying "Stalin". I'm pretty sure you mean Khrushchev. (talk) 18:53, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
The west i.e the USA and the EU want Ukraine in order to attack Russia. Period. The west have paid the nazis to destabilise the country, as always, and put in an illegitimate govt. Whose first move was to ban the Russian language. And who is being bribed by Kerry. Watch http://rt.com/on-air/rt-america-air/ for an alternative propaganda. 1984? Yep! (talk) 20:15, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Oh, that same RT who's reporters are quitting, and saying how wrong Russia was in off the cuff live outbursts? Good sources mate! --Revolverman (talk) 00:03, 6 March 2014 (UTC)

Wait, what?[edit]

The cunt has been nominated for a noble peace prize. MESSIAH OF DOOM Be judged by your suicidal desire Dolan.png 00:30, 6 March 2014 (UTC)

Anybody can be nominated for a Nobel Prize. It's a trivially easy process. That doesn't mean they'll be taken seriouusly by the committee that actually awards them. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 00:48, 6 March 2014 (UTC)
Even Hitler got a nomination. WěǎšěǐǒǐďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 01:54, 6 March 2014 (UTC)
A few years ago somebody nominated football for the prize, because it brought people together or something. I don't think he'd ever been to Glasgow. SophieWilderModerator 19:29, 7 March 2014 (UTC)
Hell, even Obama got a peace prize, fоr being Non-Bush enough. (talk) 04:17, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
I see… so, what must one do to receive a nomination? MESSIAH OF DOOM The epitome of Gods and Men alike Dolan.png 15:52, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
Get a qualified nominator to nominate you. There are probably at least one or two people who fit the bill on this website. Drop one of them a line. TeenageWasteland (talk) 15:56, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
It's that easy? You just go to a politician or UN member or something and be like "giv me an Nobil Priez numineshun", and they just go "K"? You don't have to, like, be a president or actually do something before hand? MESSIAH OF DOOM Be judged by your suicidal desire Dolan.png 16:02, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
Technically, you can get the person who taught your "Europe and the World" survey course in your Freshman year to nominate you, assuming they've got tenure. TeenageWasteland (talk) 16:04, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
Indeed. The Nobel Peace Prize nomination system is much more lax than that of the other prizes, likely because it was thought that judging the concept of "peace" was a bit more subjective than, say, judging the merits of scientific discovery. - Grant (Talk) 16:09, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
Can somebody here with authority please nominate Black Sabbath for creating heavy metal, which has caused people around the world to forget their differences and join together in harmony for 40 years? MESSIAH OF DOOM What is this that stands before me? Dolan.png 16:14, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
I think we may differ on the definition of "harmony". Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic? Moderator

Warm weather port[edit]

Says it all. Russia needs and has always wanted. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:18, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

This isn't the 19th century anymore. Besides, the use of the Russian naval base at Sevastopol was never really threatened. Octo8 (talk) 10:46, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Proud parent moment[edit]

I'm unashamedly posting this link of my lad's latest studio recording. He's co-writer, lyricist, keys and vocals. Just a group of students having fun but they're very passionate about it between their studies. Ajkgordon (talk) 14:07, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

Not too shabby. Hey, maybe we should create Rationalwiki:Fridge Door for all the proud parents we have here :) PsyGremlinFale! 14:23, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Sounds good to me! I know you parents work hard and need a better place to share your pride than FB. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:34, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Nice idea! Also got another one - eldest just landed a job with the French Environment ministry working in ocean conservation in New Caledonia and English/French liaison between NC and Samoa. Flies from Paris next month. We'll miss him but he's pursuing his passion. Ajkgordon (talk) 14:43, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Can't be such a shabby passion if it leads him to a place as beautiful as Nouméa. ;-) Bismarck (talk) 15:26, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Different son! Ajkgordon (talk) 15:53, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
You wrote that your son flying to New Caldonia is "pursuing his passion". Bismarck (talk) 16:36, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Yes. But shabby....Psy....earlier post....other son....music.........wibble. Ajkgordon (talk) 17:17, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Parents brag; their children cringe. Parents get lost for words because they are fit to bust with pride; their children breathe a sigh of relief. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:57, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
if they were all as modest as us. As us? You... you're a parent, ListenerX? o__o Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 07:07, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
As us? Minnesotans.
As for me, I have the misfortune of being on the receiving end of the boasts; the majority of my family are unlettered and seem to think a doctorate is some kind of membership card to the International Rich & Famous Persons' Club, just for starters. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 07:38, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
First world problems. Bismarck (talk) 09:00, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Way to go, Listener. Projecting your own experiences on everyone else is lame trolling. As parents, we have always been involved in helping our children towards their goals and part of that includes encouragement. That you confuse encouragement and pride with boasting and bragging is a shame. Ajkgordon (talk) 09:31, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Jesus H. Christ. God forbid people say anything nice about anyone doing something worthwhile. I'm a little shy of a doctorate myself, and the child of two parents with one high school diploma between the two of them. I'm not embarrassed by their pride in me; I take it seriously and respectfully, because I understand my success, such as it is, is because of them. Getting a couple of kids into the ranks of the "lettered" from where they started from wasn't easy. They've earned the right to boast. There are worse burdens I could be bearing. TeenageWasteland (talk) 13:39, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Damn guys, I be jelly. My parents are both college-graduated and have nightmarishly high expectations from me. I'd give all the goats in China for being from any of your families. High expectations are a bitch. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 19:00, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Way to go, Listener. Projecting your own experiences on everyone else is lame trolling. I saw it as providing an alternate perspective on the issue that was previously lacking. I do not think I am exactly alone in cringing when my parents brag — pardon me, express completely non-boastful pride — about me. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:48, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
No, you're just being a dick. Ajkgordon (talk) 08:44, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Some people cringe when the grass in their neighbour's garden is growing too tall. I.e. not really that much of problem if you think about it. Bismarck (talk) 09:40, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Heh hehe! Ajkgordon (talk) 10:00, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Leave it to LX to rain on your parade. It's like he exists for the very purpose of being a pointless contrarian. What a strange perspective that he can't even allow his own parents their own perspective. Misfortune indeed. For them. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 17:55, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
AjKgordon says, "I'm proud of my kid."
ListenerX says, "My parents are so proud of me it's embarrassing."
Don't be a prick Listener. --Marlow (talk) 16:03, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Wow, what a tough crowd! If ListenerX hies from the western marches of the US Great Lakes, it's possible that the Law of JanteWikipedia makes praise or pride socially unacceptable. Cross cultural communication, beset with trap and snare, yet again. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 14:09, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

Articles for Deletion[edit]

Some of you have noticed this already. I've decided to try putting together a centralized AFD resource for RationalWiki. Most of it is knocked off from Wikipedia but repurposed for our more casual nature. Earlier I had to run to something else and didn't get to finish it (documentation is non-existent, for instance), but it is in functional shape. Call this Beta if you will, I am open to comments and changes. Zero (talk) 00:52, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Argh. Not very easy to use. Leuders (talk) 01:18, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Well that's disappointing. I'll take a stronger look at it. Zero (talk) 01:30, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Are you sure your box only contained {{subst:afd2|pg={{subst:SUBPAGENAME}}|text=Reason}} ~~~~? The presence of an infobox seems like you put it in not as intended. Zero (talk) 17:31, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, the instructions were not clear to me. It gave a {{ }} string to copy to the page and so I did and got that mess. Leuders (talk) 18:00, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Just finished. Try these instructions on for size. Zero (talk) 18:06, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Check out this diff. No visible instructions populate. Leuders (talk) 19:05, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
They're dependent on the discussion being absent in the first place. They're there now. Zero (talk) 19:35, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I saw that one go by. The log place you put it in is incorrect because my link included an extraneous slash at the end. As for your discussion page, are you using some sort of WYSYWIG editor that isn't the normal editor? I'm still seeing preload is wrong and it includes the box that it shouldn't. Zero (talk) 20:27, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

OK, well, enough time spent, I'm deleting those entries. Time to draft a new volunteer. Use Kansas as an example if you like. Leuders (talk) 00:14, 13 March 2014 (UTC)


What advantages is this supposed to have over the current system of discussion on the article's own talkpage? The key thing to remember here is that a lot of people use their watchlist to keep track of articles they have written, edited or have an interest in, and it's usually easy to notice when a deletion discussion appears on one of your watched article's talkpages. Once you start taking that discussion away from that talkpage, it becomes much more likely that the editors watching that page won't notice that their article is up for deletion until it's already happened. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 09:06, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Lol, that makes total sense until the WIKI LOSES YOUR WATCHLIST. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:49, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
On wikipedia, it exists so that "guardian angel editors" can come save things other editors find irredeemable in their current state. Since rationalwiki doesn't exactly have the same requirements for articles, the tool isn't as useful. Ikanreed (talk) 14:10, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
I wanted to make a centralized system so we don't get items tagged for deletion then sat on for a while. It was an idea I had brewing since this came across my talk page. Zero (talk) 17:09, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
There's no reason to believe that will be the case. We have a centralised duplicate articles/merge proposals page but it includes some articles that were tagged over two years ago & have been left untouched. If anyone wants to view a central listing of all articles tagged for deletion, they can already view the relevant category page, but in practice I doubt that many people often look at this (as with the lists of 'wanted pages', stubs, & various articles tagged as 'requiring attention'). WẽãšẽĩõĩďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:54, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
No one looks at it the duplicate articles page because mergers are pretty rare. We've had, what, less than a dozen in our entire history? As for deletions, I see them pop up once every couple weeks, sometimes more.
You also underplay the problems with the lone-page system. Politicking by deletion is a thing that happens, and it's much easier to do across isolated pages. I know, because I've personally timed the deletion of a page that another author really liked for when I knew they weren't around. If I had had to tackle deleting them on a central discussion page, I wouldn't have done it.
A second problem is that RationalWiki is a community, and pages, regardless of who's worked on them, should see input from as broad a base as possible. In theory, lone-page deletion discussions allow those who care about an article to weigh in on the discussion. In practice, it allows a tiny handful of editors to decide what content Google ends up indexing for everyone to see. If an article is irredeemable garbage or off-topic codswallop, the four editors who happen to have it on their watchlist shouldn't get final say.
As for putting it into practice, how do you think every other wiki with a central deletion page did it? It's a poor argument to claim we're somehow magically shittier at implementation than every other thriving wiki out there. Reroute the "check the talkpage" link on the deletion template to the central discussion page, throw up an intercom alerting everyone about the change, and let RW's resident busybodies (with whom I count myself) relocate ongoing deletion discussions. A few months of that and, like the Saloon bar and our towering piles of whingery, it'll be the go-to page for deletions, and lots of people will have it on their watchlist. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:57, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
"I've personally timed the deletion of a page that another author really liked for when I knew they weren't around" So you were a complete dick? ħumanUser talk:Human 03:54, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
Are you deliberately mocking me with this talk of a watchlist? Mine had about 2500 entries but refused to load, so I manually purged it. Even with no entries at all it just produces a blank page with no sidebar, header or footer. I gave TMT permission to use my account but nothing has come of it. Redchuck.gif ГенгисRationalWiki GOLD member Moderator 22:56, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Sounds like it's Tmtoulouse that's mocking you, in that case :-) Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 23:04, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Nope, it's the wiki is borken. My watchlist - which was what I used to check on the wiki - got completely lost. 15,000 pages gone. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:54, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
what about http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Category:Articles_for_deletion ? doesnt this already do what you want ? Hamster (talk) 22:52, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
No. Additions or subtractions to a category don't show up on watchlists, nor can you see the state of the discussion by casually scrolling the page. It's like the worst of all possible systems. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 23:04, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
RM: I'm trying to understand what you wrote, it seems like damning then praise and then just confusing me. Could you try me again? Zero (talk) 23:33, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
He's making a case for why your efforts might be good, that's all. Nullahnung (talk) 23:36, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Correct. I apologize for any confusion. I was just trying to rebut Weaseloid's (and others, inevitably) defense of the current method. I actually suggested a centralized deletion page several years ago, but nothing came of it, and I'd like the idea to succeed this time. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 23:51, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I will harden and clean this process then. If you have suggestions, please let me know. Zero (talk) 00:59, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

I agree with Human and Stabby that this is overall a good idea that would fix some of the problems with just using watchlists and categories for tracking deletion proposals. I do think the system of adding new pages is confusing in its current form though. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] [留] 09:30, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
I agree that its a good idea. My only concern would be having two systems in place but I may not be understanding it completely. Hamster (talk) 16:53, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

I thought this was probably a bad idea, then I saw the huge list of existing terrible deletion nominations that Zero populated the page with. Holy crap. Thanks for doing this, Zero - David Gerard (talk) 23:07, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

If you build it, they will come as indeed you (and others) have. Zero (talk) 01:46, 14 March 2014 (UTC)


Please attempt to test the steps outlined. If you don't want to, make sure you hit this link to add the page to your watchlist. Zero (talk) 16:25, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

Whew. Fixed a couple bugs with dealing with non-mainspace articles. Should be a bit better now. Zero (talk) 18:18, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
See your talkpage for a very obvious bug.--ZooGuard (talk) 19:00, 13 March 2014 (UTC)


I made this for my own use a while back. Unfortunately, dpl nolonger seems to let you add notifications (e.g. bolding) for new unread changes like we used to have in the forum, but I don't see how the above helps with that either. Peter mqzp 07:48, 14 March 2014 (UTC)


Since I built stole the thing, I volunteer myself to be the guy to supervise and mark a consensus when there is one. Objections? Also this. Zero (talk) 18:43, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

Consensus shouldn't be left to one person, right? Nullahnung (talk) 18:51, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Of course. So unless it's obvious I'm going to either let it brew some more or just mark as "indecisive" and let the article stand. Zero (talk) 18:54, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
A few days, a week at most - David Gerard (talk) 21:40, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

So, who watched Cosmos?[edit]

I did. I liked it, though I thought they relied a little too much on CGI gimmickry. Anyone have opinions? Is this going to, in any small way, help turn popular opinion against creationism and such and towards science? DickTurpis (talk) 02:07, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

"Neil deGrasse Tyson reminiscing about his meeting with Carl Sagan...Neil must have cried during several takes of telling that story. Such a touching story..." My thoughts as I posted on Facebook. Zero (talk) 02:16, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Not sure how much it will do versus militant ignorance, but the 'whose God is bigger' ploy might help a little. I enjoyed it, though I can't say I learned a whole lot from it. Learned more about pangolins and echidnas from the show immediately previous on National Geographic. I wonder if pangolins would eat fire ants. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 03:10, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
I Thought it was great. I didn't think the CGI took away from the information being conveyed. Obviously, being a prime-time major network science show its going to be perhaps "simplified" for a non-science loving audience. The only gripe I had watching it was how many commercials there were (I'm not used to watching commercials because I only torrent or netflix things).--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 04:03, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
On the subject of commercials: on KTVU at least, the commercial that aired after the burning of Bruno by the Church was one for the movie Noah (yes, the biblical one). --TechCheesedisagree 05:06, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
I saw that one. I had no idea what the movie was about. After seeing it finally say "NOAH" at the end, I had even less of an idea what it was about. It seemed to me as if Noah was given super flood powers. Frederick♠♣♥♦ 06:09, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
I missed it, but I'm going to watch the next episode. About 8:00 PM, central time, if I'm correct?--The Madman (talk) 10:55, 10 March 2014 (UTC)The Madman
I'll never understand the appeal of creationism, to be honest, and I don't come across proponents of that belief very often; in fact I don't think I ever have. Christianity in Western societies most commonly seems to take the form of a nice and harmless superstition, frequently evoked in sports, for example, or when someone dies. Creationism therefore seems akin to a child refusing to acknowledge Santa does not exist, coming up with naive, pseudo-scientific proofs that reindeers can in fact carry a fat man in a sleigh through the air, while rejecting counter-arguments with the bogus notion that "science thinks" bumblebees can't really fly either. It's unlikely a TV show can help with any of that. Bismarck (talk) 12:17, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Actually, a TV show may just be the thing for helping the kids let go of Santa. It's not easy to let go of part of your core, but once you've done it you can move on. Nullahnung (talk) 12:37, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
There is a psychological phenomenom called "motivated reasoning", in which firm adherents tend to entrench their (mis)beliefs when confronted with factual counter-arguments. If the TV show was sufficiently entertaining and non-offensive while confronting irrational ideas, that might actually work, as it would pre-empt a feeling of humiliation. But that's just my theory. Bismarck (talk) 13:40, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

I wonder if I'm the only one here who thought it stunk. I think there's a real tendency in popular science related TV to tell just so stories about how things got to be the way they are and this new Cosmos is certainly guilty of perpetuating this trend. Instead of discussing how we came to the understanding we have of the nature of the world around us, Cosmos goes towards the "scientists say" method of explanation, which in my mind is only one step removed from "the bible says" school of pedagogy. With only a cursory explanation of the scientific method, Cosmos ends up portraying science as simply an alternative source of mythology; A problem further muddled by a heavy handed cartoon about the Giodano Bruno, framing what was essentially a theological debate as the persecution of science by big bad religion. I realize that they're trying to cover a large topic under time constraints, but there were some incredibly poor choices here, including a back of the cereal box tour of the solar system, "Mars is red, the sun is hot". Maybe I was under the false impression that this was a big budget TV event, but from a purely aesthetic perspective we were wide of the mark with a goofy CGI spaceship complete with sound effects that could have been lifted right out of a crumby Canadian SiFi tv program and low budget flash-style animation that looked like an outtake of an off message eSurance commercial. I suppose we're talking about something that replaced Bob's Burgers and American Dad in Fox's line up so I shouldn't be expecting too much, but I was disappointed. --Marlow (talk) 17:09, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

Hey, I've heard nothing but good things about Bob's Burgers. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 07:09, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
When 33% of adults in the U.S. do not believe in evolution, for there to be a prime-time science show on a major network that clearly states that we evolved from ape like ancestors, I'd say its a step in the right direction. We RationalWiki folks are in a privileged position to know already that the sun is hot and evolution is scientific fact, but consider for a moment that not everyone knows that. Denying evolution is on essentially the same scientifically cognizant level of denying that the sun is hot.--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 02:25, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

Episode 2[edit]

I thought the second episode much better than the first; the explanation about eyes, and how they're stuck in some ways by being evolved under water, in particular was impressive and contained a lot of take-home points. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 14:37, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

I had my local station cut out part of the broadcast for extra commercials. The part about the tree of life had the first two minutes missing. Zero (talk) 14:40, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

Julie Ann Horvath quits GitHub![edit]

And apparently, the founder's wife was the main reason, if 90% of what she talks about in this interview is anything to go by. I don't know. She didn't really say any specific accusations to GitHub, so time'll tell. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 23:10, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

I blame Linus Torvalds. I'm sure if it were Mercurial hub this wouldn't happen :D --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 01:10, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
In other words, GitHub lives up to its name. /rimshot Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 01:33, 18 March 2014 (UTC)

Startpage.com tracking[edit]

So, startpage.com says it's a private search engine that doesn't track your search results or log your IP address. Yet I've found that my search results for the same search term sometimes change when I click on certain links (I haven't actually compared before-and-after results manually, so it could be me). The first 10 results I get right now for "quantum medicine" are:

  1. Quantum Medicine - Energy-Medicine.Info
  2. NeuroLogica Blog » Quantum Medicine
  3. Quantum medicine, the new medicine? - Dr Paul Drouin - YouTube
  4. Deepak Chopra - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  5. Quantum medicine - SlideShare
  6. American Academy of Quantum Medicine (AAQM) - Quackwatch
  8. WCQM - World Congress of Quantum Medicine - 2014
  9. World Congress of Quantum Medicine | Facebook
  10. International Quantum University for Integrative Medicine - Facebook

Now, if Startpage doesn't have a filter bubble, I assume you should have the same results.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 02:41, 16 March 2014 (UTC)

My results for the same search appear in a slightly different order. NB. This is UK English (presumably based on my browser settings or IP address) so might differ on that basis from US English searches. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 02:49, 16 March 2014 (UTC)
I searched "dacian vatican" (without quotes), and there was a Reddit post (Dacian, Latin, Romanian : linguistics - Reddit) which I think was at first about the 6th or 7th entry, and now it's the 2nd entry. I didn't take any screenshots, so I can't be sure, though.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 03:03, 16 March 2014 (UTC)
I closed and reopened my browser, then searched "quantum medicine rationalwiki" and clicked on some links to see if it would change the results. Now it's:
  1. Quantum Medicine - Energy-Medicine.Info
  2. NeuroLogica Blog » Quantum Medicine
  3. Quantum medicine, the new medicine? - Dr Paul Drouin - YouTube
  4. Quantum medicine - SlideShare
  5. Deepak Chopra - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  6. Energy medicine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  7. American Academy of Quantum Medicine (AAQM) - Quackwatch
  9. WCQM - World Congress of Quantum Medicine - 2014
  10. World Congress of Quantum Medicine | Facebook

So, slightly different. But if Startpage did track, I would expect there to be a RW result somewhere in there, which there currently isn't. Maybe the changed order is due to restarting my browser, and unrelated to searching for RW articles.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 20:14, 16 March 2014 (UTC)

ixquick works by starting several searches on the most common search engines with the words you entered, compiling the results. The effect you are seeing might not necessarily be due to a filter bubble. It could for example come from the way the search results are collected or the way the involved search engines arrange their results. I'm getting different results from you, but that may be due to locality. I personally use DuckDuckGo, because I don't see the point in using a different search engine if Google is still getting my traffic via ixquick. I haven't yet noticed that my seaches affected the results there. It should be noted however that most people find the filter bubble useful, expecting to be directed to the sites they frequent by the search engine. Bismarck (talk) 09:36, 17 March 2014 (UTC)
IIRC, Startpage, unlike Ixquick, uses Google, rather than aggregating resulsts from multiple engines.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 03:36, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
OK, maybe Google is building a filter bubble for all searches coming from startpage then. Or maybe one for every server that they use, in which case your search results would differ depending on the server processing your request. But I'm only speculating here. Bismarck (talk) 09:46, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
If you use a portable browser that you have never logged on to any google service to search for something on google.com you will get something damned close to what you get from startpage as long as you haven't set any preferences with that. There will be slight differences as google updates search results rather rapidly. Sphincter (talk) 19:31, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

BICEP2 - primordial gravitational waves discovered[edit]

Aww. Osaka Sun (talk) 23:28, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

Superb, brought tears to my eyes. I love the bit at the end where he says how much he always hoped that he didn't believe the theory just because it is so beautiful but because it was true and then nearly lost it. Science is epic! Ajkgordon (talk) 08:31, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
In many ways, it's often understated how big of a validation this discovery could be (if it turns out to be correct). The CMB is a staple in any university level cosmology class, and in general, its causally connected nature was always a significant issue until inflation came around. However, the lack of an obvious mechanism for inflation was a huge question, especially since the quantum field underlying the proposed "inflaton" would have to be a scalar field in order to fuel inflation properly. Why is this interesting, you may ask? Aside from (perhaps) the Higgs boson, we have yet to see a single example of a fundamental scalar field in nature. The idea that this theory might see experimental invalidation is incredibly exciting, as it justifies all of the (somewhat dubious) assumptions made up to this point! - Grant (Talk) 13:53, 18 March 2014 (UTC)

Why do dogs like to mate?[edit]

How do male and female dogs find each other so easily, and why do they like to make puppies? — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

Can't tell if this is trolling or not, but get your fix here. Zero (talk) 18:04, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Thank you for improving my day with a large close-up picture of an erect dog penis. Carpetsmoker (talk) 23:47, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
female dogs are in seaqson for only a short time and they give off a distinctive scent. why doesw anything like sex ? do you need the birds and bees talk ? Hamster (talk) 04:45, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Because there wouldn't be any dogs if they didn't make puppies. Bismarck (talk) 10:11, 20 March 2014 (UTC)


...would benefit from some increased scrutiny.--ZooGuard (talk) 19:06, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Proactive measures will be taken, with glee! That is all.--The Madman (talk) 23:47, 21 March 2014 (UTC)The Madman

Here we go again[edit]

Start microwaving the popcorn: Blockchain ("The world's most popular Bitcoin wallet") is "temporarily interrupting services" à la Mt. Gox. Osaka Sun (talk) 19:22, 18 March 2014 (UTC)

They say they ran into a database problem with their MySQL cluster. That's fairly plausible. MySQL clustering is annoyingly fragile, I've run into bugs with that for real, at a big corporation not some fly-by-night Bitcoin operation. It's just not as heavily used as the simple one node MySQL servers popular on web hosting (and e.g. used for things like RW). Also keep in mind that real world banks occasionally have awful database problems and go offline for long periods, so let's not be too quick to point and jeer. I don't much like Bitcoin, but let's not set a double standard, if a big high street bank can say "Sorry" and all is forgiven after they're off the air for a whole day, the same should be true for a "Bitcoin wallet". Tialaramex (talk) 22:35, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
Bitcoiners have a tendency to sugarcoat bad news, à la Mt. Gox, Silk Road II. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 01:03, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
The error they reported indicates that there's no more storage space for the index. Their "fix" apparently involves recompiling MySQL. While I'm not specifically a database administrator, something tells me that is not the right approach. AntiDeathPill (talk) 10:07, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
The root problem is that MySQL is the Comic Sans of database engines - David Gerard (talk) 17:07, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
What does that make MongoDB? AntiDeathPill (talk) 01:04, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Papyrus? --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 18:50, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

New Law[edit]

Hey folks. I've formulated a logical principle based on a conundrum I've encountered multiples times, and in response, I've formulated the Fuck This Law, which goes as follows: Any logical principle that can be used rightly to dismiss something wrong can be used wrongly to dismiss something right.

What do you think? Apropos? -- (talk) 05:29, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

We should call it "'s law".Gomer (talk) 07:43, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
There's a reason I chose "Fuck This Law" instead. ;) -- (talk) 13:27, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Fallacy fallacy - David Gerard (talk) 08:28, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Nah, it seems sorta different to that. I think "Fuck this Law" works fine. MESSIAH OF DOOM Unite with thy oracle Dolan.png 10:42, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
It's not specific to fallacies. Fuck This Law applies more broadly to other logical principles and situations where the Fallacy fallacy would not be applicable. -- (talk) 13:27, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Is the wrong application of a logical principle actually an application of that logical principle? It is possible for any tool or practice to be used wrongly. Bismarck (talk) 14:19, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
A wrong application is still an application, if we want to talk semantics. Nullahnung (talk) 14:22, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
If I say 4 + 4 = 1, did I actually use summation? Bismarck (talk) 14:29, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Depends. Nullahnung (talk) 14:44, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
A good example is Concern troll; this term could easily be used to dismiss legitimate concerns that go against the norm as "trolling." -- (talk) 01:25, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
The trivial example is "Science has established through years of study X, therefor we don't need to discuss X being untrue anymore" where X is something like global warming, evolution, what have you. But applied as a universal principal, instead of just to things people won't shut up about, it's literally the opposite of science. Ikanreed (talk) 15:57, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
By the way, is that you, PSaL? You have a very similar IP address, and, unlike very many BoNs, you're not a racist/alt-medder/MRA/anything. Is it you? If so, how's retirement treating you? MESSIAH OF DOOM What is this that stands before me? Dolan.png 13:26, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

Other languages[edit]

Hi, everybody. I'm new here and I was wondering if there is any project or plans to make a rational wiki version in other languages. --Alumando (talk) 16:57, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

There are a few but I don't know the details. Proxima Centauri (talk) 17:17, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

Details, such as they are. Alec Sanderson (talk) 17:25, 22 March 2014 (UTC)
There's a massive Russian-language RW. I dunno who are the regulars there, as I do not understand moonspeak. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 19:25, 22 March 2014 (UTC)
This reminds me that I haven't checked up on them for some time.--ZooGuard (talk) 08:10, 23 March 2014 (UTC)

Quackwatch page[edit]

As a newcomer to this wiki (which I've had a lot of fun contributing to) I seek advice from the more sagely old types that live their lives on this godforsaken site. I would assume that several pages here are constantly under attack by all manner of woo peddlers and apologists who feel the need to defend their blessed saviors, I would also assume that you should just protect the page and move on. This situation is a little more complicated, one or two people have produced an argument loaded with red herrings that Quackwatch somehow botched a take-down of Weston Price. Because of this now Quackwatch is entirely "untrustworthy" (whatever that means) and "does sloppy research". Did I fuck up by even engaging in this on the talk page?--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 19:17, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

New sections generaly go to the bottom - it's most easily done with the "Add topic" link at the top of the page.--ZooGuard (talk) 19:23, 22 March 2014 (UTC)
Like I said, newbie.--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 19:58, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

There are some really weird people in Japan, part umpteenth[edit]

Seriously...--ZooGuard (talk) 21:30, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

What. The. Shit. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 21:39, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Cute young woman in a uniform. And you wonder why the otaku are going mad? --PsyGremlinFale! 21:53, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Watashi wa Crimea attorney general desu~
Has a ring to it, doesn't it? Nullahnung (talk) 22:05, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
It's nice. Still needs some broken english and obscure Unicode characters to achieve that level of anime retardedness...
Wait, did I just say that? Damn, I need to lay off the Something Awful forums for a while... --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 23:54, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Really? This site is basically round after round of "Oh Japan." (Not Safe for Life) Zero (talk) 23:56, 19 March 2014 (UTC)

When I saw the "not safe for-" part, I was like *unzip*, but then when I looked at the site I was like *zip*. MESSIAH OF DOOM Impurity is the secret Dolan.png 11:03, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
Actually, scratch that, aside from the mostly creepiness, there are a few solid *unzip* pictures. MESSIAH OF DOOM A sea on earth is a sea of tears Dolan.png 11:05, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
I honestly can't stand otaku, but Anime and it's normal fans itself is fine with me. Heck, I even like mecha....a lot. Sadly, trying to draw a squamous death machine holding a sword covered with sanity-blasting runes is harder than it may seem.--The Madman (talk) 01:15, 20 March 2014 (UTC)The Madman
They're relatively easy to render in a 3D app like Blender or Maya, though. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 02:49, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
How is this any weirder or worse than the endless picture memes we do here in America?--BMcP - Just an astronomy guy 15:47, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
From the comments section: "She is a hot, tough as nails, cool as Vodka, obviously capable, intelligent cop-woman, with eyes that are slightly bigger than they should be..." I smell an FX network series in the making. Leuders (talk) 16:57, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Plus, if you watch the video, she comes across as slightly bumbling - her phone rings, she loses her place in the notes, she looks very nervous at times... and if there's one trope the otaku go for, it's the klutzy girl. Um... so I hear. Now, if only she were wearing glasses... PsyGremlinFale! 18:02, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Yes but tan suede boots at 1:23... Leuders (talk) 18:45, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
I think it's that lovely Ruritanian uniform. She looks like she just stepped out of Full Metal Alchemist. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 03:59, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Wow. Fanartists love memes, sometimes based on something innocuous, film at 11. You do know the same thing happens in the west all the freakin' time, don't you? Well, I suppose not given the evidence. --Kels (talk) 18:43, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

Case in point, homoerotic fan art of Columbine shooters. Vulpius (talk) 00:13, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
What is it with their fascination for us wide eyes? ħumanUser talk:Human 02:06, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
They don't have them? Bismarck (talk) 10:18, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

We have a lot of work to do...[edit]

Seriously. (Source Study) Zero (talk) 00:08, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

It probably doesn't help matters that the "They're deliberately infecting people with HIV!" conspiracy is not hugely dissimilar to shit the US government has actually done in the past. Compro01 (talk) 02:27, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Looking back at what a pain in the arse I was as a little kid about to get vaccinated, being scared shitless, I wonder how much of the anti-vaccination movement is a psychological reaction, both in the sense of a horrible memory, as well as an unwillingness to put a child through that. So people pick up any rumour to justify their horrors. The main opposition is towards the MMR vaccine, because these dieases are perceived as benign. I don't think quite as many adults would reject a tetanus shot after experiencing symptoms of this deadly infection. Well, just a thought. Bismarck (talk) 10:46, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
I actually met a person who was a vegan, and said that they didn't support them because, and I quote, "bacteria are animals, too". Like srsly. I honestly almost shot myself after they said that. MESSIAH OF DOOM What is this that stands before me? Dolan.png 12:13, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
I lolled. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:09, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Though, to be fair, they were probably stoned shitless, so eh. MESSIAH OF DOOM Be judged by your suicidal desire Dolan.png 12:14, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Not surprised, really. Vegans tend to be much more extreme than vegetarians (at least the ones on Reddit and Something Awful). --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 12:28, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
I once heard "I don't like to walk on grass, because I don't want to hurt the grass." So yeah, it gets much much more extreme than veganism if you look hard enough. Nullahnung (talk) 12:47, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Since obviously pavement is better for the plants. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:09, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
There's the pranics and the breatharians. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 17:30, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
My unscientific impression is that here in the US, we are simply awash in unsolicited medical advice, most of it profit-oriented body-shaming. People must not be allowed to get comfortable in their own skins; that won't move the product. (As for myself, I'm resolved not to buy any processed food items that make health, dietary, nutritional, or weight-loss claims on the packaging or advertising, including claiming that it has reduced anything or is "anything-free". I also seek out GMO foods, figuring they're my best bet to acquire mutant superpowers.)
Given this glut of medicalistic and moralistic informercialism, and the fickleness of the various scares, (Eggs are bad for you! No they're not! Tomorrow: the health benefits of high fructose corn sugar....) I just assume that anybody talking about health or nutrition on the US media is trying to make me feel bad to sell something. So any medical information from the US media comes at a steep credibility discount already. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 14:34, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
See, that's why I support GMO labeling - so people like you can find what you prefer. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:09, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
As a general rule of thumb, I'm skeptical towards any source of information, which also wants to sell the exact thing it informs about. "Apricot seeds cure cancer! Buy some here!" Bismarck (talk) 15:43, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
And that's just it. Given the sources of funding for research, and the dependence of the commercial media on advertising, most medical information and media outlets are compromised by commerce to at least some degree. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 16:06, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
There's very little that, according to the UK Daily Mail, won't give you cancer.
There's very little that, according to the UK Daily Mail, won't cure your cancer.
The DM isn't by any means alone in this but seems to be the worst. Scream!! (talk) 16:41, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
So, soon enough we'll see "OXYGEN CAUSES CANCER!" and the next day "OXYGEN CURES CANCER!", because the average DM reader has an attention span of a femtosecond. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 17:30, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Hence the nickname for the paper. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:10, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Which nickname? Daily Fail, Daily Heil, Daily Junk Mail, etc. come to mind, but they don't seem to relate. Compro01 (talk) 02:57, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Daily Fail is the most common. Just as the Grauniad is most common for the Guardian. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:59, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Oxygen is for losers. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 03:43, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

More "Voter Fraud"[edit]


How fucking adorable. I guess thats just the new thing these unelectable idiots (in both Ottawa and Quebec) are going to be claiming now. Funny how any historian or political scientist will tell you Election fraud from the front of the ballet box is almost completely unheard of. --Revolverman (talk) 22:32, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

And it looks like that the PQ are already crafting excuses to why Quebec doesn't want the bullshit they peddle. I wonder what other fun accusations will be leveled, given that it seems like Non-frankaphons are the ones denied voting rights. --Revolverman (talk) 20:18, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
"Oh mon dieu! People think differently than we do! What do you mean we the Quebecois are not an amorphous, uniform mass who hate those pesky Anglophones?" <- The Party Quebecois' argument summed up. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 23:23, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
That part isn't surprising though. There's an election coming up, and the PQ isn't doing as well in the polls as previously expected. Of course they're going to trot out whatever rhetoric they can to mobilize their base as much as possible. - Grant (Talk) 23:43, 23 March 2014 (UTC)

The PQ eats its own in a way no other political party can. The way Mme. Marois has bungled this election, from PKP to being driven off-script with referendum questions that she couldn't make go away, les purs et durs vont tourner contre elle in a way that'll make what they did to Levesque look positively chummy. She tried to bring up the corruption attached to the previous Liberal regime, and Couillard wouldn't get sucked in, so now she's trying to make a small problem--a bunch of McGill students from Ontario possibly voting, which may or may not be kosher--into something resembling a real problem. Thing is, anyone who would get riled up by that is pretty much guranteed to be a PQ voter anyway, so she gains nothing. TeenageWasteland (talk) 01:13, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

Personally, I was surprised by her bungling, because she first seemed to be far more shrewd of a politician than she seems to be. I'm not sure how this election will go, but it seems like she drastically overestimated how much of a "mandate" her minority election win really gave her. I would have expected a more intelligent strategy, given that it was quite obvious that the vote was one of dissatisfaction with the Liberals, not one of fervour for the PQ. - Grant (Talk) 01:32, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
It's looking like there is a real disconnect from reality and echochamber in the PQ core brass, given that they seem to think a real referendum is in the cards, that they would get a Qui, AND that Canada would would completely cool with an EU system with Quebec. --Revolverman (talk) 02:24, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Well the latter point would likely be a necessity; otherwise Canada would be split into two pieces with the necessity of trading across an intermediary country just to transport goods between the two. Not to mention Canada would lose a significant portion of its population, economy, and natural resources. I'm sure if Quebec managed to separate, both sides would try to hammer out something akin to the EU for the best of both parties. That said, managing to separate wouldn't be easy. I strongly doubt there's real drive for a referendum now, especially as Quebec's immigrant population continues to grow substantially. Even if there were, the Clarity Act makes it a bit more difficult to imagine how a 50% + 1 referendum would even end up. To say there would be significant turmoil would be an understatement. - Grant (Talk) 02:33, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
I grant that, but it is a big assumption to assume, given that logic is very rarely seen in geopolitcal situations, more so as something as heated as a province leaving a nation. --Revolverman (talk) 02:42, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Oh, I'm not saying it would be agreed upon at first or a trivial conclusion for both parties to come to; I'm just suggesting that it would be the eventual equilibrium point (likely after a long period of squabbling in one way or the other). - Grant (Talk) 02:51, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Right, but thats how the PQ act, and that was what I mean by them being in an echo chamber. They just assume it WILL be a trivial thing, and are promoting it as such. --Revolverman (talk) 03:01, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Oh, I see what you mean. Sorry; I didn't interpret that correctly in your original comment. Yes, I entirely agree. The PQ seems to be writing off every downside to their ideas. Given that said ideas are often fairly extreme, that's a curious tactic. It makes more sense when they apply that towards their fights with the federal government, since any concession made towards Quebec is a victory, and any refusal is a reason to fire up separatism. However, when this tactic is used to attack the average voter, as opposed to a huge faceless bureaucracy like "the government", it's dangerous. - Grant (Talk) 03:44, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Everything that the PQ says is as surreal as a Salvador Dali painting. It's like they have negative self-awareness. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 02:35, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

Quick and easy way to kill cane toads?[edit]

My house has a backyard with like 33589043334333 cane toads. I always fucking hated the bastards, but today, I had to stop my cat from eating one and probably dying, and so I've decided that it's time to get rid of them. However, after looking through several websites, the only ways I can find in which one is legally allowed to kill them is by freezing them or by giving them to a proper organisation to be decapitated. I don't have time for that shit, I want to get rid of them all as quickly as possible- I'm about to look after a friend's dumbarse dog who eats anything significantly smaller than itself. Does anybody know any quick, legal and humane methods that I could use to get rid of the fuckers in, I don't know, a week? Kthxbai. MESSIAH OF DOOM Impurity is the secret Dolan.png 06:14, 18 March 2014 (UTC)

Cane Toads? That's a silly name for those things. I would've named them chazzwazzers. --Marlow (talk) 06:42, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
Sprinkle affected area liberally with petrol. Apply match. Walk away, silhouetted by raging inferno... --PsyGremlinFale! 08:28, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
Don't you know that human beings and toad can coexist peacefully? Getting your buddy's dog to eat them is a bad idea, because cane toads are poisonous and it could kill the dog. The only animal of use here are snakes immune to the poison. But I don't know if releasing a nest of snakes in your backyard is such a good idea either. Some birds eat toads by picking the non-poisonous underbelly with their beaks to eat the intestines, but that'll leave behind a rotting corpse. Picking up the toads (with gloves) and freezing them to death really seems to be the only workable method here. But if you live near a pond or swamp, you'd have to get rid of the tadpoles, too, because even a single toad couple can spawn thousands of angry toad offspring seeking revenge for their fallen comrades. Here's an interesting site: http://www.canetoadsinoz.com/ - Bismarck (talk) 10:42, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
That's exactly the thing- the stupid thing is probably gonna try to suck the shit out of them. MESSIAH OF DOOM Be judged by your suicidal desire Dolan.png 12:35, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
If you're in FNQ, it shouldn't be impossible to get a shotgun licence. Or a flamethrower. Or a tactical nuke - David Gerard (talk) 12:00, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
here's a radical suggestion - try your local pest control people. If you can't afford them, then you can clear em out of your garden by hand and secure your fence properly. AMassiveGay (talk) 12:06, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
Repent and let that hairy guy's people go, unless your heart is too hardened for that by now. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 15:33, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
No, he might as well keep pushing his luck. He has no kids, so the final plague kind of loses its oomph. What's God gonna do instead? Run his cat over? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 16:06, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
I lolled. But sometimes I think of the cane toad problems here in QLD as one of the biblical plagues, then I laugh. Then, once I finish laughing, I think of all the ways I could blow the shits to pieces. Then, the thought of all that hard work makes me hungry, so I go and cook some bacon and eggs. Once I finish this meal, I go and lie on my bed and sleep for two hours. Then, I wake up, and decide that it's time for my 11am fap. Once that's finished, I think "I should probably go to that lecture at uni". And so I go attend this lecture, do some stuff, then meet up with my girlfriend. We talk about stuff, kiss a bit, then I decide that it's time to go surfing. I put my board on the car my dad's lending me, get out a couple of CDs (usually either Iowa by Slipknot, Ænema, by Tool, Octavarium by Dream Theater, The Monad of Creation, by Mournful Congregation, Toxicity by System of a Down, Black One by SUNN O))), or Sailing the Seas of Cheese by Primus) put them in the player while I drive three hours from my shitty house in the country to the beach. On the way, I stop at the servo station, pick up an ice coffee, beef jerky and lollies (candy), while continuing my journey. At the beach, I surf and feel awesome. I then come home, put on more music, and shred guitar with mah bros. After this, I have a couple of beers, get in the pool, and come on RationalWiki. And then I make burritos that taste like God (cause I'm a brilliant chef), watch TV, fap again, and edit RationalWiki some more. The end. MESSIAH OF DOOM Be judged by your suicidal desire Dolan.png 12:35, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Ha ha ha. What a story, Mark! Bismarck (talk) 14:23, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
Who's Mark? MESSIAH OF DOOM A sea on earth is a sea of tears Dolan.png 07:31, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Go see The Room. Bismarck (talk) 09:43, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Apparently a cricket bat or Dettol, which is available in the US as an antimicrobial used in soaps and sanitizing solutions. Kill the adults, pull their eggs out of the water, and poison the tadpoles. It may take a few years to get rid of them all and you're also going to kill everything else in that environmental niche if they haven't already been driven out. You'll also potentially poison the environment and keep it from being repopulated for a while. This is going to turn out spectacularly whichever approach you take. Good luck and let us know. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 16:04, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
I'm actually currently listening to a lecture on Contaminated Land and Groundwater while reading this... Nullahnung (talk) 16:08, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
[1] Sterilesig.svgtalk 17:19, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
gloves, a garbage can, a shovel or net , a bottle of chloroform and some gasoline.catch toads, drop in can , add chloroform. when they stop moving dump in heap, add gasoline and burn. Hamster (talk) 18:07, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
From Sterile's link it would appear that the easiest way is to pick up an old chest freezer and then, on with the gloves, pick them up and pop them in. After a week or so clear out the freezer. Rince and repeat. Placeholder (talk) 18:47, 18 March 2014 (UTC)
Gasoline is a really bad way to try to burn things. It doesn't burn well as a liquid, but its vapors are explosive. If you must, use kerosene. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:56, 21 March 2014 (UTC)


I have a plan. I will find at least 45 toads, and place these in a bag, smother them and freeze them. Once I'm sure they're dead, I'll start a controlled wood fire in the aforementioned bin, and place the toads in it. The only thing I can't sort out is what I'm gonna do with the ashes. Should I just spread them around, or pour them into the grass, or call a disposal guy thing, or…? Any suggestions? MESSIAH OF DOOM A sea on earth is a sea of tears Dolan.png 12:30, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Spread them around, let the Rhinella Marina know it's place in the world, like the invasive species it is, brother!--The Madman (talk) 23:42, 21 March 2014 (UTC)The Madman
I'll just wait 'till they cool down, then I'll pour them into the bush. MESSIAH OF DOOM A sea on earth is a sea of tears Dolan.png 02:54, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
Check your local waste management services. Around here ashes go into general waste (not biodegradable, not hazardous). Bismarck (talk) 10:57, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Okay. I haven't started burning yet (still freezing them), but I'll try that. MESSIAH OF DOOM Deserved doom shall be unto you Dolan.png 11:24, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

We don't need to protect the planet from Global warming because God didn't make the earth to last forever.[edit]

I know an evangelical Christian who just told me that over the telephone, she drives a very large caravan type car that eats petrol (gas in the USA). I believe she belongs to one of the Campbellite groups but am not sure as she denies it. I suggested she should look at the Wikipedia article, List of dates predicted for apocalyptic events. I didn't suggest List of predictions of the end of the world because she would have an excuse to disregard what's in an atheist website. I fear she won't look at any such list because she thinks it virtuous to study exclusively or mainly what her group teaches. I would like to add to the Global warming article that some Christians think they needn't do anything because the world won't last long. Can anyone give me a reference so I can add it? I'm also adding this to the Global warming talk page. Proxima Centauri (talk) 12:48, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

Posted a reference on the global warming talk page, though I think that reference should be looked over first by someone who is acquainted with political science. Nullahnung (talk) 13:10, 22 March 2014 (UTC)
• Rush Limbaugh: "I refuse to believe that a God who created the universe would create creatures who, by virtue of improving their lives and making progress, would destroy another part of His creation." quote
• Sarah Palin: "Copenhgen=arrogance of man2think we can change nature's ways.MUST b good stewards of God's earth,but arrogant&naive2say man overpwers nature" quote
Add evangelical Christianity to convervative libertarianism and you've got a recipe for undeterred global warming denialism. I want to point out though, that if your acquaintance is popping out babies like other evangelical Christians, then it doesn't really matter what size of car she drives; each additional child increases her carbon footprint by about 60 times more than she could save by driving a more fuel-efficient car (30 miles per gallon instead of 20). study - Bismarck (talk) 09:55, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
It seemed obvious to me from the get-go that reducing carbon emissions was not a viable way to alter the course of global warming. It would require humans not to be selfish and short-sighted. If that's the alternative, we're better off preparing for the inevitable. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 16:27, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
(EC)That's... not actually true, and you're taking quite a simplified, superficial view of the situation. Reducing carbon emissions sustainably (as in, sustainable development) is very much a viable way to milden the impact, along with other actions we might take, like preparing for the damage that is inevitably going to be inflicted. Now you might ask: "Why don't we find out which of the actions is the most effective and concentrate all our efforts on that? (like preparing for the inevitable, why don't we just concentrate on that and ignore everything else?)"
And I would answer that that's assuming things. Concentrating all efforts on one thing might result in diminishing returns, where you would get significantly more returns by pursuing multiple paths of disaster mitigation at once, one of them being reducing carbon emissions. The consensus right now is we have reachable goals for multiple paths we are pursuing (like for carbon emissions). Nullahnung (talk) 16:48, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
See also John Shimkus. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 16:44, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
every air conditioner should be passing the air over a pool of limewater to remove the CO2. Also fit every cow with a fart filter. Hamster (talk) 18:31, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Are you A) just trying to be funny through just generally taking an idea to ridiculous places, or B) trying to imply that reducing carbon emissions is not important by ridiculing it, or C) trying to for some reason come up with the most unsustainable methods of carbon emissions reduction to tell people how not to do it? Nullahnung (talk) 19:17, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

The quote from Rush Limbaugh above: "I refuse to believe that a God who created the universe would create creatures who, by virtue of improving their lives and making progress, would destroy another part of His creation." - sounds like an argument in favour of atheism to me.--Bob"I think you'll find it's more complicated than that." 20:52, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

On Yahoo! Answers[edit]

Related to the section above: Some bright spark has decided that the Economics section of Yahoo! Answers is the best place to find out "Who is the Major Funder of 'Rational Wiki'?" Unsurprisingly, the question remains open. :) For extra lulz, you can check out the questions answered and asked by the same person, they are public.--ZooGuard (talk) 12:37, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Y! Answers are in general laughable. My Brother My Brother and Me have made a decent podcast career out of mocking them :) Worm (talk) 13:16, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Mocking Y! Answers seems to me to be not much more specific than mocking the general public... Nullahnung (talk) 13:19, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Shower us with cash, George Soros! Osaka Sun (talk) 13:21, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
I have added my beliefs about the multiple nefarious sources of RW funding to the Yahoo! Answers site.--False Flag (talk) 21:08, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

I wonder if this Tommy was Tommy Major (Ymmotrojam) who was active on CP in the early years? Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving Moderator 21:54, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

I prayed to the baby jesus to provide for them and he hath provided. True story. (talk) 23:13, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

It is interesting that you should ask this question as I was tasked some time ago with investigating the group and I have spent the last nine months following various money trails.

The main source of Rational Wiki funding is obscure though not completely so. Although it is ostensibly funded by contributions from visitors to the website this is obviously not the case as such funding would in no way cover the costs of their extensive activities – few of which are in fact carried out under the “Rational Wiki” banner.

For instance they are involved in “false flag” operations in which they pretend to be fundamentalist Christians and then carry out activities such as tax fraud which bring Christianity into disrepute.

The also organise, and stage-manage, international anticapitalist protests and, in addition, are involved in the production and distribution of Communist, Muslim and Fascist propaganda.

Activities of this nature cost vast amounts of money and it is speculated that they are supported by agents of the Chinese communist government working under the cover of international front companies.

The oil-rich Muslim Government of Saudi Arabia has also had clandestine contacts with the organization, and Saudi Arabia has been using it as a front to promote Islam internationally.

Finally, various far-right fascist groups have been providing “street muscle” whenever the group wishes to promote violence in protests against groups like the G8.

It is understood that they are being investigated by the FBI and there is a big story brewing.

Okay, who the fuck was this? It's amusing that this is obvious Poe… and the guy rated it the "best answer". Also, it's really fucking annoying when people put a space between "Rational" and "Wiki". Trapped inside this octavarium 10:31, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

Plot twist: actually is a terrorist organisation. MESSIAH OF DOOM Deserved doom shall be unto you Dolan.png 11:29, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Plot twist: We are also Kent Hovind. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 03:28, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Plot twist: Kent Hovind isn't a real person- we made him up. MESSIAH OF DOOM Be judged by your suicidal desire Dolan.png 05:14, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Plot twist: Trent is bizarro communist Bin Laden. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 17:00, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Plot twist: RW is literally Hitler.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 17:25, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Getting arrested for tax fraud while pretending to be a creationist has got to be a terribly unsustainable propaganda strategy. Someone tell the evolutionist illuminati that they're wasting good manpower, here--"Shut up, Brx." 23:58, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Silly, It's all part of the plan. First, we do counter-productive things in order to make them complacent. Then, we ... haven't really thought the next two steps out. Oh, well.--The Madman (talk) 01:09, 26 March 2014 (UTC)The Madman
What really gets me is that we are somehow both part of the far-right fascists and the communists the same time. Or that we are an atheist organisation that for whatever reason decides to help out Muslims. Trapped inside this octavarium 09:55, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

I was the one responsible for that answer. As long-time members of this site will know I have been observing both Rational Wiki and its sister site Conservapedia for some time. The financial links forged between the disparate organisations I mention may seem strange at first but they are all brought about by quantum field effects on the Horseshoe theory. I have extensive paperwork to back up my claims and I am in the process of presenting it to both the FBI and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.--False Flag (talk) 11:34, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

I believe I saw an image on Facebook about that, signed "Dr. Chris Armstrong, Ph.D." - David Gerard (talk) 11:59, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
You mean I've been plagiarised? Wouldn't be the first time.--False Flag (talk) 13:55, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

Guns allowed at universities, even in public theatres, etc.[edit]

Lol wat. I mean, seriously, America, why? MESSIAH OF DOOM Impurity is the secret Dolan.png 08:02, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

How else can they continue their proud tradition of shooting presidents in the head? — Unsigned, by: Minoreditor / talk / contribs
Uh, none of those shootings took place at a university. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:53, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Still, the point remains that I don't really get why it's really fucking necessary. MESSIAH OF DOOM Why weepest thou? Dolan.png 07:35, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Something about a well regulated militia being really fucking necessary to the security of a free state... ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 08:33, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
So, wait- if a government just wakes up one day and is like "k, let's oppress these people", the only way to stop them is for absolutely everybody to shoot them at a university? Wouldn't the government just use their bombs or some shit to blow the people up before they could come at them with their shotguns and semi-automatics? Ah, well, I don't even live in the US, so whatever. And I guess that it's not that much of a big deal compared to some other crazy shit relating to gun laws- for example, how the fuck did half of these shooter people get the frigging things anyway? And I'm not saying "ban all the guns for everybody". I'm just saying that it's not really necessary for the average person to be able to access the more "hardcore" guns, that it's not necessary to carry guns everywhere you go, and that there should be stricter gun control laws. Though I think we both agree on those, so yeah. Anyway, I've had a bit of a shit day. How have you been? MESSIAH OF DOOM Deserved doom shall be unto you Dolan.png 08:48, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Remember the photos from Tianeman Square (sorry for the spelling) of the lone man and the tank? ħumanUser talk:Human 04:05, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Ya, why? What I can see is that you're either saying that A) The government won't bomb the shit out of people if they have guns, or b) Guns aren't necessary to freedom, or C) Individuals can be stronger than the government. MESSIAH OF DOOM Why weepest thou? Dolan.png 07:12, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
I think it's like Hotel California. It's designed to make you ponder its meaning rather than to have one. Minoreditor (talk) 20:48, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

The next time someone tells you that chemicals are "bad for you...."[edit]

This. TeenageWasteland (talk) 01:50, 25 March 2014 (UTC)

In Ireland we had a chart like this in our science books, but it was for an apple. (talk) 02:15, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
I think you spelled "potato" wrong. TeenageWasteland (talk) 02:21, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Just ask them what they mean by "chemicals", and then explain to them what you mean by the term. They probably mean man-made synthetic additives, like, um, salt or something. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:30, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
... and that's some tasty nibbling right there!
Oh my Science, that thing has oxalic acid! No way I'm putting that poison in my body.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 02:59, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
In green seasons, in the US midwest and northeast I've enjoyed the occasional pinch of sour grass, or common wood sorrel, a species of Oxalis AND I'M FINE leave me alone! I'M FINE, I tell you... Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 04:31, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Its funny when people think that word means something.--NerdyWizardyou believed that why? 14:59, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
"Chemical" or "poison"?--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 21:20, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

Name That Meme[edit]

There was a US TV show in the fifties called "Name That Tune", where the studio band would start playing a tune, and the contestant who could name it quickest won the pride of the victory and a little bit of cash. That's not what I want to talk about here.

About every week I visit an old guy up the street, to pick tunes and have a little conversation. He calls himself a conservative, and in many of the things he says I hear echoes of right-wing talking points. Something he said the other day got me to wondering, and I'd like the mob to help me identify where it might have come from.

It had to do with the roots of male on female violence. He said something about the man going out, risking broken limbs and exsanguination to bring a chunk of meat back to the family unit. If wifey then ruined it by leaving it on the fire too long, then the family unit might starve and die, so consequences for goofing up needed to be severe.

The whole thing has a Dagwood/Blondie aroma of oversimplification, and I wonder if it is some trope from evolutionary psychology, or anthropological wannabes conflating alphahood with dickotry. (I hasten to say that my elder friend is a gentle soul, kind to women and children, but set in a few of his ideas.) I wonder if anyone has seen that "smack her around if she burns the roast, because we might all die otherwise" bit before, and where. Yours in curiosity, Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 16:52, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

It's Flintstones EP. I'd suggest you stop right there before our homegrown MRAs hijack the discussion. Osaka Sun (talk) 17:12, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Are there EP types who use this particular trope, and if so, where? I'm willing to collapse anything I consider to be MRA hijacking, so kindly keep a tight focus in this discussion, people. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 17:22, 26 March 2014 (UTC) p.s. If it helps home in on possible sources, he uses the term "pod" for the family unit. Cetacean hominids, who'da thunkit? sjc 17:40, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
AFAIK, the general term-of-art for this kind of pop-EP is "just-so story". :) In the particular case, it sounds like a novel twist of the "we hunted the mammoth" meme.
And given the behaviour of some of our closest relatives, any gender-biased violence tendencies would be on an instictive level, if they exist at all, and they would have appeared long before humans had fire - or more precisely, before the human ancestors went down the trees.--ZooGuard (talk) 17:52, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, both of you, for helping narrow the search. Now all I need is a time compressor, to squeeze some reading in with a few other things I've said I would do. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 18:11, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Nothing I've read in actual evolutionary psychology tells this particular story. My understanding is that men get stuck with the task of mammoth hunting because they are relatively disposable, and this skews their inner computation of risk vs. reward different from the way females reckon it. They need to go for the big score. But this would appear to have little or nothing to do with relationship violence. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 19:31, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Interesting that mammoth hunting came into the conversation so soon. It seems to be the archetypical high risk, high tech (Clovis-like points on a foreshaft, meant to break off and stay in the prey) hunting scenario that everyone likes to talk about. My friend did in fact talk about mammoth hunting a bit.
A few years ago I had the pleasure of spending time around a fellow who is a geologist among many other competences, who had worked at a mammoth kill site. His reading was that wherever the animal dropped was where the party started, with the whole group gathering at that spot. The festivities stayed right there as long as there was food to be picked off the bones. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 20:27, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
As a coda to that: not all hunting-gathering groups had access to big animals like mammoths and bison. Most early humans may have been opportunistic scavengers with a diet mostly consisting of fruit. Of course, that doesn't fit well with the "paterfamilias must zealously husband the scarce protein source, namely meat from big scary animals" narrative. I think my friend may be typical, in that he clings to that narrative, with the main social unit consisting of an isolated family of one male with as many wives and children as he could support and defend. I never quite get a straight answer when I ask him who he gets his info from. A lot of it is popularized archaeology in audio book form, I suspect. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 20:44, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
Hunting and war bands appear to be part of the shared repertoire; the routines exist even if the cues never come to start such a group. On the other hand, it seems unlikely that Clovis or our buddies the Aurignacians and Solutreans had much of a lasting impact on innate human behavioral routines; they weren't really successful. They were flash in the pan cultures that burned out as soon as they killed off enough of the big game. Post-Aurignacian Europe and post-Clovis North America were significantly depopulated; in North America this brought about a second wave of Old World settlers. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 03:34, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

Like many other anthropologists, Wrangham simply cannot resist pushing his ideas far beyond the available evidence so that he ends up claiming that cooking was responsible for just about every human characteristic you care to mention. Thus he maintains that the trait of sociability evolved from friendly, fireside chit-chats at mealtimes; that the innate sexism of most societies arose when women were left in charge of the hearth while men went off hunting; that our hairlessness developed because fire was a better warmer of bodies than fur; and that domestic violence can be traced to the point when men – returning, hungry, after a hunting expedition – were disappointed with the dinner their spouses had prepared for them.

Bismarck (talk) 10:17, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

I think that's exactly it. He has mentioned cooking and fire as what enabled our brains to grow large. The guy talks as if there was a uniform culture among all stone age humans world wide. Just-so stories indeed.

The other guy, the geologist/polymath, told me that one digging season he had used nothing but stone tools he had knapped for himself, for personal chores. He also said that every time he tried to make a Levallois point, he ended up with conchoidally fractured gravel. Some other wiki has a cool gif of the stages of making one of those... thanks, all! Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 13:34, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

The idea that all human ancestors shared a common culture is not all that unreasonable; my understanding is that the mainstream opinion in genetic anthropology is that Homo barely survived a genetic bottleneckWikipedia between 50K and 100K years ago, when the ancestral human population may have been lower than 10,000 people. The survivors of this event are the ones that exhibit behavioral modernity. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 04:29, 28 March 2014 (UTC)
At which point humans were already out of Africa and spread over large parts of the world. It is completely unreasonable to assume they shared a common culture over such distances. Octo8 (talk) 05:36, 28 March 2014 (UTC)
Even if all the survivors came from sub-Saharan Africa, that covers a lot of ground, a lot of spreading-out room. I'd find it easier to believe they shared a uniform culture if it could be shown that those ten or fifteen thousand individuals lived in a geographically restricted area, or a unique ecological niche. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 14:35, 28 March 2014 (UTC)

Nate Silver is no longer a witch[edit]

If you see WIGO:Blogs, a growing number of people are noticing that FiveThirtyEight's expansion and move to ESPN is robbing the blog of the statistical depth that made it so popular on at the Times (including the hiring of Bjorn Lomborg clone Roger Pielke Jr., presumably to appear "edgy"). So what does Silver now do in response to the criticism? Launch an ad hominem on Paul Krugman.

Along with the Ezra Klein/Brandon Ambrosino brouhaha, what a buzzkill. Osaka Sun (talk) 00:51, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

I can say with 95% certainty that Nate Silver does not support school prayer that article is a joke. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] [留] 10:16, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
Now he's claiming satire. Osaka Sun (talk) 12:15, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
Because it was obviously satire. also, I'm not sure you know what "ad hominem" means. TeenageWasteland (talk) 13:31, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
I agree the article was just poking a bit of fun at Krugman. Not sure about satire though; I failed to notice any deeper point. Bismarck (talk) 13:35, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

Fivethirtyeight's problem is what it's always been: outside of election season Nate had little to write about. He still managed to crank out some sort of column every few days, in general, but much of it was a bit mundane. Now he's launching a new site during the dry season, yet has a whole team of writers cranking out material. The result isn't bad, but it isn't what made 538 a go-to site in the past. As election day draws nearer it'll pick up. One of their columnists even wrote an article recently which basically said "some poll a goddamn senate race already so we have something write about!" DickTurpis (talk) 09:31, 28 March 2014 (UTC)

Homeopathic remedies recalled[edit]

For containing actual medicine! Zero (talk) 14:48, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

I should have read WIGOW before posting this. *Facepalm* Zero (talk) 14:49, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
Well, anyway, I can sort of understand that. If you're gonna get antibiotics, you're gonna need a doctor to check you out and give you a prescription first- after all, don't want any more superbugs. They could alternatively become a prescription med, but that would lose them plenty of $$$, as no reputable doctor is going to prescribe a homeopathic medicine (though, I'd personally prefer it if the FDA actually had to test the effectiveness of these drugs- that way, you wouldn't get people fooled into buying this bullshit). MESSIAH OF DOOM The epitome of Gods and Men alike Dolan.png 00:44, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

The Venn Diagram of Irrational Nonsense[edit]

https://scontent-b-lhr.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn2/t1.0-9/10154489_783483021672711_889185397_n.png Ajkgordon (talk) 15:09, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

The periodic table of irrational nonsense is pretty good too. http://www.crispian.net/images/PTOIN3-150.jpg Compro01 (talk) 16:55, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
Was expecting Scientology in the table. Was disappoint. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 18:02, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
It's there. It's shown as "Dianetics", symbol Lrh, bottom-right corner of the religion block. Compro01 (talk) 20:28, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
*cough*RationalWiki:Periodic Table of Contents*cough*--ZooGuard (talk) 18:30, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
I approve the previous comment by the heavy smoker. ħumanUser talk:Human 07:37, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

2014 Fundraiser[edit]

Thank you again to everyone who donated, this is only possible with your help. We have now met our goal, much quicker than I thought we would! Jacob will be posting more information after we have a chance to gather it all up. Tmtoulouse (talk) 01:14, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Excellent work, and thank you deeply to everybody who contributed. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:11, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Hmmm. I don't know. I heard from a pretty reliable source that we stalled out at 17%. DickTurpis (talk) 02:31, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
That was after the first 3 months, we got our second wind over the last 2 weeks. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. Moderator 08:31, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
I didn't donate. Does that make me bad? Although, to be fair, being a university student with my only sources of income being working as a lab assistant/hand/intern kinda thing over the holidays, occasionally playing live at shitty bars and a couple of loans from mates, I don't really have that many spare monies lying around. Why the fuck can't we have socialised universities, I mean like srsly? But either way, sorry guys. Maybe next time. MESSIAH OF DOOM What is this that stands before me? Dolan.png 10:47, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Of course that's fine. Donations are a completely voluntary thing and shaming people into doing it is something we should shy away from. Nullahnung (talk) 10:58, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Unlike Citizendium, the bastards. Also, I donated $20. I feel like a slightly better person. The lone sugar cube in a sea of unsweetened lemonade. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 12:43, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
We understand that not everyone has spare cash to make a sizeable donation. But if you enjoy RationalWiki even small donations - the cost of a cup of coffee or a pint of beer - can all add up . Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic?

Moderator 21:59, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Thing is, though, in Australia, coffee is like $368641148006 a cup, and beer is like $3488532125 a pint. It's something to do with the economy or some shit. MESSIAH OF DOOM Unite with thy oracle Dolan.png 10:38, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
A not insignificant sum of our Fundraiser was $5 or less donations. Tmtoulouse (talk) 23:06, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
And as motivation for next year's fundraiser, just remember two facts: (1. Roko's Basilisk, and (2. RW may one day become self-aware. Just saying...
An AI dedicated to debunking pseudoscience... Damn, that's the best idea ever. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 04:16, 24 March 2014 (UTC)
Maybe if we get enough users we'll hit critical mass and it'll be like that "everybody holding hands in China" thought experiment thing. We'll all just be organs of a massive skeptical machine--"Shut up, Brx." 19:33, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
You're not part of any "we" here, Brxbrx. Nobody likes you. Nobody wants your opinion. You add nothing. Stop bothering these nice people. Nutty Rouxnever mind 22:00, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
lol--"Shut up, Brx." 22:41, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
But is it as funny as joking about "niggers" and rape? I'm not the only person who wishes you'd go back to Encyclopedia Dramatica. Please do. Nutty Rouxnever mind 01:51, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
I get the impression that if I left, I'd only be denying you the pleasure of harassing me. You really only have one gear. Get a life--"Shut up, Brx." 02:08, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
I sense Roux's jimmies being rustled. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 18:40, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Guys, calmeth thy mammary glands. MESSIAH OF DOOM Impurity is the secret Dolan.png 08:02, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Are there any plans to adjust the gauge to display past 100% if people are still donating? Compro01 (talk) 18:13, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

Deleting and hiding one's own edit[edit]

So I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask, but anyway. I made an edit a little while ago which refers to a certain "organisation" (not being anymore specific than that) with which I have had a bit of bad history. However, I just remembered that they know my name, email and IP address. They mostly appear to be quite unstable individuals, and I'm kinda worried about what could happen if they found the page. Would anybody mind that much if I was to, for the purposes of security, delete and hide this revision? Thanks. MESSIAH OF DOOM Why weepest thou? Dolan.png 05:35, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

If there's some concern that this could put you in any sort of danger, I would not personally be opposed to that. However, I'm a single editor, so I wouldn't put much weight into that. - Grant (Talk) 05:52, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Okay. Since I have an approval, I'm going to delete it now, but if loads of other people are like "no", I'll put it back. MESSIAH OF DOOM Why weepest thou? Dolan.png 05:55, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
In general, if you have an actual reason like this, go for it. Or ask someone else to if you're really not quite sure. There's a strong social bias against "burning the evidence", so just don't overdo it - David Gerard (talk) 10:23, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

Finally, a game that caters to RationalWiki's needs[edit]

Of course I'm talking about this game. Full disclosure, I preordered the game and have now played it, but I have no affiliation with the developers or anyone else making money off it. It's launching on April 1st on Steam (that's not a joke), but it's already available for preorderers through the official website (delivered as Steam keys).

It's been mentioned on here before, I'm pretty sure, but as a refresher, it's basically a dumb physics sandbox where you are a goat, and your job is to wreck everything and cause mayhem. And what makes it fun is, the developers left in every bug that didn't crash the game or otherwise interrupt gameplay, so you run into unusual results. Quite unusual results. But there are some fun and funny secrets and easter eggs to find, and the price is right for silly, dumb fun that doesn't have any major Big Picture agendas. Nothing but goat. The game has a configurable keybind (default: "1" on number row) for bleating. You can go to space. Or become the goat lord and summon goat subjects at will.

If your sense of humour includes mayhem and slapstick comedy, and you've got a goat-shaped hole in your free time and a bit of extra cash, this may make you feel a bit more whole. I hope I didn't come off as sounding too advertise-y or evangelistic, but I've been waiting for this game for a few months, and it's basically an ongoing Christmas Day. It's not a game with a huge amount of depth to it, but it's worth noting that they've opened the game to community-created content.

And you are a goat. With full headbutting impunity. Ochotona princepsnot a pokémon 04:54, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

They're porting it to Mac and Linux, too. The trailer for it is brilliant parody. --Kels (talk) 22:56, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Is basically a big physics engine with the "sensible" setting rolled down to zero. Scarlet A.pngpathetic 10:52, 31 March 2014 (UTC)

Play guitar? Love Jesus? Got a pile of cash to burn?[edit]

Why not consider spending $175 grand on this? TeenageWasteland (talk) 14:43, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

Failing the Jesus lookalike claim, they could always try for Robert De Niro. Leuders (talk) 17:18, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Or the Mona Lisa. Or just "a face" in vague general terms. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:30, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Fuck it, the face looks like Sephiroth. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 18:35, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Or Jack Sparrow. This could go on a while... WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:38, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
It looks like Dallas' mask from Payday 1 and 2 I think anyway. --Revolverman (talk) 18:45, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Kurt Cobain could also work. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 18:59, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Or Otto from The Simpsons. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:10, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
It looks like me. MESSIAH OF DOOM Deserved doom shall be unto you Dolan.png 22:05, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Me too. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:17, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
I must be terrible at this pareidolia thing, because I can't see any resemblance to any of the above, or any face in general. :( - Grant (Talk) 22:36, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
I agree with GrantC and conclude that y'all are just fuckin' with me. Jerks. --Kels (talk) 22:54, 29 March 2014 (UTC)
Yup, looks just like my "Wolverine" photos from a couple years back. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:38, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Little known fact - Jesus looks like Johnny Depp. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 04:11, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
I don't mean to harsh their mellow but according to the Pimental shop, their custom guitars start at $1800. The highest go for around $10K. Why they think a murky pareidolic face adds an additional $165K is anybody's guess. Leuders (talk) 19:40, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
I see a troll with a cheeky grin. Spud (talk) 06:05, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
I see a little silhouetto of a man... €₳$£ΘĪÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 12:05, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
I saw Uncle It Danoso (talk) 18:18, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
It's an ent. A fossil of a mummified ent, with artistic retouching and suggestive photography. Not much to see here, folks. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 20:25, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Edit warring at Genetically modified food[edit]

Moved HERE. 17:42, 31 March 2014‎ (UTC)

Creation Science Hall of Fame[edit]

They have inducted Dr Jason Lisle (yes that one) Read it [HERE ] Hamster (talk) 04:52, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Ah, so Launchbooty's little vanity project is still going? I wonder if Lisle is in the running for the blue knobbed rod of creationist glory, or whatever that awful award was called. PsyGremlinFale! 04:59, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
blue knobbed rod of creationist glory! Acei9 07:28, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
The Dildo Vibrator Obelisk Of Glory. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 14:29, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
The giant phallus of creation prowess. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 15:04, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Isn't that the award they still have to give back after a year?--BMcP - Just an astronomy guy 03:16, 31 March 2014 (UTC)
Has it been a year since I last saw that blue glans? Where does the time go? Spud (talk) 11:39, 1 April 2014 (UTC)