RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive234

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This is an archive page, last updated 15 November 2014. Please do not make edits to this page.
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Hilarious parody of SJW rhetoric![edit]

This guy kills it! (talk) 00:11, 4 October 2014 (UTC)

... Not really?Shadow Nirvana (talk) 16:56, 4 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah that was kind of boring actually.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 16:02, 5 October 2014 (UTC)

Some articles to nominate for silver[edit]

Also Seeds of Death is very in-depth with tons of references. With proper editing, I think it's gold-level material just like 101 evidences. --Tweenk (talk) 15:40, 5 October 2014 (UTC)

Agreed for Food irradiation: seems a well sourced and quite complete article. Disagree for the others - short articles of low importance. I'd say bronze for Monsanto and Second event theory. About GMO A Go Go, I'd say nothing. Seriously, are we going to have article on each 10 minutes Youtube propaganda video? Okay, we might, can't hurt, if someone needs to find refutation of them in a debate, it's on mission, but I don't see the point to award them brainstars - brainstars should be guiding posts to interesting articles.--dx (talk) 07:33, 6 October 2014 (UTC)


What are your opinions on #GamerGate movement for accountability and non-dogmatism in gaming? Here is an [article on Intel] when they allied with GG for a while. (talk) 15:43, 6 October 2014 (UTC) [link to hate site removed]

It's already all over various threads in various talk pages including here: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/RationalWiki_talk:What_is_going_on_in_the_clogosphere%3F and here: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/RationalWiki_talk:What_is_going_on_in_the_blogosphere%3F
Please keep the discussion around one topic in one place, thanks. Nullahnung (talk) 16:18, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Or no place. We've heard enough shit about this silliness already without using it as a wedge for linking to neoreactionary/neo-Nazi sites. Nice try asshole. WẽãšẽĩõĩďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:42, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

Urological Journal ratings[edit]

So, a drive-by editor left a bunch of stuff on the circumcision page, I got him to leave it on the talk page instead, and I promised I'd look into it for him. He cited two studies [4][5] that were both published by the BJUIWikipedia. Wikipedia says it's listed as 17th out of 73 journals in its category, but I have no idea if that's good or not. I was hoping that someone savvier than I could tell me whether I should run with these studies or look for something more reputable to edit the article (I told him I'd add in stuff about how when poorly done, male circumcision can be catastrophic- he seems to think it's poorly done a lot, and he provided a link with graphic images, but I'll have to look up statistics, naturally- and also about how removing the foreskin can have adverse effects on sexual pleasure). Thanks for any help provided.--"Shut up, Brx." 02:08, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

Wow, Brx, when did you become such a sensible guy? I must be getting old, I didn't remember you like that. Very good answer in the talk page. Can't help you with medical sources check, but fully agree with your answer to the guy: references to a debate about effect on sexual pleasure and risks of procedure would be welcome in the article (there's already one about risks, actually), in the debate about circumcision medical advice part, but the "men are as oppressed as women" crap we don't need (actually, one of the mission points of the article being that MRAs use circumcision to claim that). I'd say if you don't get help with the source in a few days, just include what you feel relevant in the article and let the mob challenge/correct the refs - that's what wikis are for.--dx (talk) 08:12, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
I took a look at the articles and, using my own skills (statistical) added some input on the talk page. I hope it helps with more than just insomnia. MarmotHead (talk) 16:00, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Yo, I'm not really up on the internal politics on this site, or who's fighting with who, but can we please stop making petty jabs at each other in the Saloon Bar? Or anywhere? Like, if you've got a problem with something a person said, go ahead and criticize it, but I'm getting tired of seeing baseless personal insults being thrown at people simply because they posted something. I think that's the second time in a week I saw someone throw shade at Brx, completely unrelated to what was being discussed at the time. I don't know or care what Brx did, it's obnoxious, and it shouldn't happen to anyone. RachelW (talk) 02:45, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
I was actually supporting Brx, but... okay--dx (talk) 15:07, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, Marmothead. I'll look into it further now--"Shut up, Brx." 21:43, 10 October 2014 (UTC)

Gay Marriage and the SCOTUS[edit]

So, can somebody here with good legal understanding or just a better take on this explain just why SCOTUS would choose to not take up the cases?--Miekal 17:07, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

Scalia would have voted against it. It also would have brought up judgetrolling with lower judges by citing one of his own Very Dire Warnings as a reason to overturn gay marriage, which wouldn't look very good. The other conservative justices...it's hard to say, the vote would have been close and the arguments would have been dire. Refusing to hear the case is an excuse to chicken out and allow this to happen state-by-state instead of any nationwide ruling that'd really tick off large groups of people. --Maxus (talk) 17:13, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Relying on something Ginsburg said, SCOTUS could simply choose not to take it up because there aren't conflicting rulings at the circuit courts. For now, each circuit court that has ruled on it has ruled the same way. If one rules differently (there's a good chance of that, I hear) then there'd be conflicting rulings that need to be resolved by SCOTUS. Then, SCOTUS would almost have to intervene. MarmotHead (talk) 17:21, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
I think a fairly clear message is being sent to the several circuit courts that have not yet ruled. If everybody gets with the program, same sex marriage becomes the law of the land with the political blame being too widely scattered to hit anyone hard. It remains to be seen whether everybody gets the message. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 18:42, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, essentially this comes across as a bit of a validation from the court. The SCOTUS obviously sees that courts are almost unanimously siding on the right to marry. They could clearly intervene if they thought this was mistaken or there was some confusion, but they haven't. So it comes off as if they are agreeing with the general consensus that seems to be building in the lower courts. Or, if you want to get political, maybe the justices are just being risk-averse. Those likely to rule pro-marriage don't want to risk a close battle. None of them want to be perceived negatively as destroying "traditional" marriage or overruling the will of the people. Roberts might be worried about the legacy and appearance of his court, and thinks it is safer to just stay out of it and keep the blame away from him. Shadow of Lords talk 20:04, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Windsor was garbage, as I wrote at the time. If the Supreme Court waits for contrary decisions between circuits then at least there would be a real controversy settled in court, which is a huge improvement over Windsor where the "controversy" is basically fabricated by the majority in order to conjure up some reason to give an opinion at all. For Scalia nothing changes, if Antonin Scalia was able to imagine Congress passing DOMA for some reason besides bigotry, if he's able to assign himself some motive other than bigotry, that's still going to be true for any future decision. If anything Scalia's hardest task will be writing something in his dissent that he didn't address already. So they've all got reasons to pass at this stage. In many ways we'd be fortunate if the sixth circuit is contrary and SCOTUS accepts the resulting appeal, because then Windsor will be an insignificant prelude nobody reads. Better future law students only have to read Scalia croaking about supposedly "legitimate" goals of laws written specifically to discriminate than that they first read a majority opinion that's contradicts everything they've learned about the principles of justicability. Tialaramex (talk) 22:26, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
Public opinion for now seems to have peaked in February, and that seemed to be the driving the issue. The court doesn't like to be seen as driven by opinion polls. There's always next year (God willing we survive the Ebola outbreak). nobs"It all depends what Isil is" 21:48, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
Why do conservatives have such trouble understanding what sort of short term events are or are not threats to civilisation? A local gamma ray burst would wipe us out instantly, impact from a big rock could kill billions and destroy our civilisation and a global thermonuclear war would certainly make a big mess that took the survivors decades to recover from. But Ebola is just an infectious disease, in the worst case scenario it would barely slow us down. Tialaramex (talk) 08:33, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
It's highly likely that Kennedy would not side with the conservatives on this issue again. So we're looking at the Roberts Court ordering (arguably) the most important civil rights ruling since Brown v. Board of Education.
Are you surprised that they're delaying the inevitable? Osaka Sun (talk) 22:33, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
While Brown and (more obviously relevant) Loving were unanimous decisions, I don't think you can expect to achieve that while Scalia is still breathing. In principle a dissent is not the law of the land, but in practice dissents are very powerful, Liversidge v Anderson isn't famous for the boring "roll over and let the executive do what they want" decision, but for the scathing dissent by Atkins that invokes Humpty Dumpty to ridicule the government's position. In practice subsequent courts were more likely to cite Atkins (even though he was on the losing side) for their decisions because his argument is much more compelling, the Law Lords (today renamed the Supreme Court) as a whole got it wrong. Tialaramex (talk) 08:33, 9 October 2014 (UTC)

Quick request for any sysop[edit]

Please delete my essay, Essay:GamerGate, as it is now redundant to our mainspace article on Gamergate. Abed Nadir (talk) 09:31, 10 October 2014 (UTC)

Done and done. Have a good night. Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 09:37, 10 October 2014 (UTC)
Thanks RNS :) Abed Nadir (talk) 09:38, 10 October 2014 (UTC)

Things that Creationists...[edit]

...and in particular Conservapedia ruined for me, number..... Actually not so much any more. I watched the whole of the first episode of Brian Cox's new Human Universe and not even during numerous mentions of millions and billions and Big Bang and evolution did I think about how some crazies don't believe it. I must be cured, praise Jesus. (It's excellent, by the way.) Ajkgordon (talk) 13:02, 8 October 2014 (UTC)

To paraphrase Jesus (Mt 26:11), the crazies you always have with you, me you don't always have". nobs"It all depends what Isil is" 21:51, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
Er, that's not paraphrasing (poor =/= crazies) but yeah, I like that! Ajkgordon (talk) 22:08, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
Isn't Brian Cox partly responsible for that things can only get better song though? That should have ruined it for you. Fonzie (talk) 20:58, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
Robin Ince mercilessly takes the piss out of him for that. It's all good. Ajkgordon (talk) 09:34, 12 October 2014 (UTC)

Conservative Judge Against Voter ID?[edit]

Something interesting for the WIGO Blogs but I didn't want to blunder my way through it and mess things up. :-P

A Saint Ronny appointed judge wrote a very thorough dissent calling out the GOP for the games they are playing with these laws. I guess the big take away here is that this is someone the Supreme Court pays attention to.

Tossed his name in google, this guy is apparently also Scalia's nemesis, which makes him a hero in my book. :-D (talk) 03:19, 12 October 2014 (UTC)

Add it! FᴜᴢᴢʏCᴀᴛPᴏᴛᴀᴛᴏ, Esϙᴜɪʀᴇ (talk/stalk) 14:25, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
Posner is one of the best minds and best writers in the Federal judiciary today. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 18:16, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
I have some friends in law school who, though leaning left, are big fans of Posner. He really comes across as a guy who cares about the law and the arguments that support it. You should read his ruling on the gay marriage case if you haven't. He seems to be the first judge to really rip into the defense for the silly arguments they put forward, trying to find a way to take them seriously and failing. It practically reads like it might belong in one of our articles (the snark is heavy). If you're feeling giggly after reading it and need something bitter, try reading this contrasting opinion by Louisianan Judge Feldman. Whereas Posner engages the arguments of the anti-SSM side and shows the basic hypocrisy and lack of rational basis for it, Feldman just essentially says, "States have the right to define marriage," (apparently however they want) and then repeats every right-wing trope that comes to mind about gay marriage and incest. Feldman also fails some pretty basic constitutional law. Shadow of Lords talk 15:37, 13 October 2014 (UTC)
Hmm, Posner's ruling is pretty good, although I'm not a fan of his style. It does have some er... eccentricities? I'm reluctant to just call them errors. He notices that some traditions like hand-shaking cannot reasonably be said to be good, in that particular case because it enables the spread of diseases through contact contamination, but he later says these traditions (unlike the tradition of insisting only opposite sex couples marry) are harmless. Is the spread of disease harmless? I think that paragraph could have been sensibly re-thought, focusing on the fact that arguably harmful traditions like hand-shaking are not the law in his jurisdiction.
The focus on party affiliation of judges and other officials unconnected to the executive or legislature (see several comments above) is in my opinion a very unfortunate outcome for the US. I don't know how it came to be (the Founding Fathers did not intend a party system at all, so it cannot have begun at their instigation) but it's ugly and serves the country poorly. There are a lot of basic political problems in the US, and this certainly isn't top of the list (maybe campaign funding? or gerrymandering?) but it does deserve to be in anyone's top ten. Tialaramex (talk) 22:33, 13 October 2014 (UTC)

Deliver Us From Evil / Ralph Sarchie[edit]

This sh*t. Plenty of sites are talking about it but I couldn't find a single skeptical view anywhere. What the hell. So "exorcisms" and demonologists are a thing again? Is it all an elaborate plot to advertise a movie? — HaamerModerator 11:33, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

Of course exorcisms are a thing. Have a link to a wiki that categorizes all sorts of crazy, irrational things people believe. Ikanreed (talk) 20:22, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
there have been a couple of high profile child abuse/murder cases linked to exorcisms and belief that the victims were possessed by demons in the last couple of years in London. I also remember finding a flyer offering the services of an elephant and castle based chap to perform exorcisms for all manner of ailments and conditions. I don't know how wide spread these things are but they appear to a thing amongst African communities in the UK. I guess some the of pray the gay away types might fit the bill as well AMassiveGay (talk) 21:38, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
a link AMassiveGay (talk) 21:56, 15 October 2014 (UTC)


So, I have the opportunity to grab a copy of D'Souza's "America Imagine the World Without Her" - on a scale of 1 to oh-dear-christ-what-was-I-thinking should I waste the bandwidth? PsyGremlinRunāt! 12:03, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

Didn't a movie come out like a decade ago that was the same basic premise (America suddenly going isolationist instead of counterfactuals), go find that one, it's probably more enjoyable. Alternatively, go watch CSA for a better "what if America was different/gone!".--Miekal 13:18, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
I saw a few minutes once. Honestly I thought it was not so much excruciatingly horrible as plain boring. Making a movie almost entirely out of PRATTs does that – the overall effect is much the same as listening to a vague acquaintance drone on and on about ill-formed political views. Abed Nadir (talk) 16:50, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

How legit is this?[edit]

Found this article shit about feeding your dog raw food. http://rawfed.com/myths/research.html Does this sound very legitimate to you guys? While I'm inclined to believe that raw food is fine/beneficial/non-lethal for pets, the fact that it appears to suggest (and kinda explicitly states) that anecdotal evidence is superior to scientific evidence, and that it seems to espouse some kinda "big pharma" conspiracy, but about the vet industry, leads me to question this article's believability or whatever. So what do y'all think? — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

Eh. The author is right that nobody is likely to fund a study on raw diets, unlike the numerous studies of processed foods, but probably wrong that a study which found positive benefits of a raw diet would have much impact on most pet owners' feeding habits. The anecdotal evidence in favour of (good) raw diets and the anecdotal evidence against (bad) raw diets in both valid. From what I know about raw feeding, a good raw diet is probably slightly healthier than the average manufactured pet food, but it involves a lot of effort to research & maintain, whereas manufactured foods are 'good enough' and much better than a poorly thought out raw diet. Unsurprisingly, most pet owners go for the safe & convenient option. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 11:55, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
Thank you, that makes sense. I don't know much about food, or pets, so I didn't have much to go on; I just saw a couple of what appeared to be "red flags", if you will, and it led me to question the validity of the piece. Thanks, anyway. (talk) 13:37, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
I have cats and the mainstream assumption is that raw meat of unknown provenance is not a safe choice. On the other hand, alternative and pseudoscientific therapies have been getting more popular. One of my regular vets (whom I trust) even threw in some Chinese medicine into my cat's regime, gratis, as a last ditch effort to stave off death.Vajrapani (talk) 06:50, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

Is there a name for this[edit]

So here's a song, "Stand Up" by Flobots. Anyone who knows the Flobots knows the general theme of the song (earnest political rap I guess would be the best way to put it? I suck at genres). But here's the thing; I always find this kind of thing pretty dumb and borderline embarrassing. If I go through the lyrics and the themes contained therein, I find that I agree with basically all of it. And the music/rap is entertaining enough for what it is, I certainly don't hate it. And yet, even though one of my peeves with life in general is that more people don't speak up against things like they do in this song, I STILL find the song kind of ridiculous, dumb and annoying because of how... earnest and enthusiastic they are about their message. I can't really put it into words. Is there a term for it? Or can someone else explain it better than I did? X Stickman (talk) 22:13, 12 October 2014 (UTC)

So in the same sort of business as Rage Against the Machine, System of a Down and Rise Against? Zero (talk - contributions) 00:41, 13 October 2014 (UTC)
It is rather overbearing, I suppose, and rather naive as well. (Fiddles in hip hop? Really?) I've always found sincerity grating. Then again, I grew up on Paul Kantner and Grace Slick ranting about revolution and universal free love. And here's Mick Jagger claiming to be a "Street Fighting Man". Back in the day, that moved the product. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 00:45, 13 October 2014 (UTC)
The people over at TV Tropes would broadly file the sentiment you're describing under "Don't Shoot the Message. Grumblejaws (talk) 06:54, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
A song is not an essay or a speech. That is why the most powerful political songs broadly follow the rule of showing, rather than telling. Even successful novels and poems that aim to make a political point often avoid falling into the trap of making naked statements. I think PJ Harvey's Let England Shake is the best anti-war album ever precisely because of that. Vajrapani (talk) 06:33, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
One of my favorite of her albums. On the other hand, just like the death of Little Nell, you'd need to have a heart of stone to get through "Flowers of the Night" (Kantner, Slick, and that's about as metal as you're going to get out of Garcia) without laughing. What a waste of a solid riff. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 04:05, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

I'm not on top of this ...[edit]

... but have you seen the latest Sarkeesian (Gamergate?) threats:Terror threat against feminist Anita Sarkeesian at USU. Scream!! (talk) 22:31, 14 October 2014 (UTC)

Eh, unfortunately there are people on the internet who find doing this amusing. I'll make a prediction. In the unlikely event they ever catch up with whoever sent that, it'll turn out to be a 13-14 year old kid completely unconnected with either the university or gamergate. Someone who gets their jollies through stirring shit online, and who isn't old enough yet to realise just how life-ruining doing that is going to be if they get caught. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 02:35, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
According to the police, the person making the threat isn't a student at that university, and it's consistent with the other threats Sarkeesian has received, so probably is an empty threat. However, I wouldn't go as far as to claim that they're a troll. The worst elements of the gaming community always come crawling out of the woodwork whenever feminism (or anything else involving human rights) is mentioned. ShapeshiftingLizard ~▲~ hear me roar ~▲~ 03:19, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
I second SL. This person probably wouldn't have actually shot people, but they definitely wanted to. Abed Nadir (talk) 08:51, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
there are many people I definitely want to shoot. Not quite so many people I would actually shoot. AMassiveGay (talk) 22:06, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Literal terrorism, because skimpy armour means so much to you. (talk) 14:47, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

Side-by-side template screws up superscript[edit]

So, I've been expanding the Qur'anic scientific foreknowledge article for a while now. The article uses the side-by-side template ( {{sbs}} ) pretty heavily.

However, the template moves superscript text downwards, for no apparent reason.

For example:

Here's some normal text. And here's a link to Wikipedia.WikipediaAnd here's a reference.[1]

And here's the above, outside of the side-by-side template.

"Here's some normal text. And here's a link to Wikipedia.Wikipedia And here's a reference.[2]"

Does anyone know how to fix this? FᴜᴢᴢʏCᴀᴛPᴏᴛᴀᴛᴏ, Esϙᴜɪʀᴇ (talk/stalk) 01:23, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

This problem doesn't happen on Firefox, only on Chrome/ium, if that's any help debugging - David Gerard (talk) 12:19, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

It's the vertical-align part of the style that does it. It moves the text baseline to the top of the cell, so superscript elements are about on the same level. This is what it looks like without the align.

Here's some normal text. And here's a link to Wikipedia.Wikipedia   And here's a reference.[3]

Would it actually break anything to take the text alignment out? I'm not sure what it's actually for. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 12:43, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

OK, I think I've sorted this out. The vertical-align is in there so the smaller paragraph is not centred in the cell. We can achieve the same result without screwing up the text baseline by using "vertical-align: text-top;" instead. If anyone sees any horrible breakage in SBS articles, we can revert it I suppose. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 14:10, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
Yep, fixed in Chromium. Nice one! - David Gerard (talk) 15:50, 16 October 2014 (UTC)


Yo guys[edit]

Do this shit for this please. MESSIAH OF DOOM Don't read look every behind second you wordDolan.png 10:59, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

Obama finally found some shovel ready jobs - burying Ebola victims. Only someone tell him they have to be burnt, instead. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:51, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
Always there with the insightful comments, Robby. DickTurpis (talk) 00:52, 17 October 2014 (UTC)
We finally found the traditional cures for unemployment -- war and disease. So much for progress and change, huh? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 02:00, 17 October 2014 (UTC)
Keep fuckin' that chicken, Rob. Keep fuckin' that chicken. DickTurpis (talk) 02:24, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

Fat atheists[edit]

I read on an encyclopedia website that most atheists are fat, does that mean that most of the people on this website are fat? I hope this doesn't offend anybody, but I'm doing a school project on obesity, and I'm including that as part of my project, any chance I can use anyone here as an example? I already have a picture of PZ Myers for the project. Please, I really need to get a good grade on this so I can make my daddy happy. Encyclopedia Lover (talk) 18:38, 13 October 2014 (UTC)

I read on wikipedia that most trolls have terrible body odour. Does that mean that you smell like a dead raccoon in mailbox in July? I don't mean to offend, I'm actually just taking a survey to confirm how splendedly feral trolls can be (and if disgusting is adequate to describe troll hygene). I just want to make my children happy by showing them how not to smell. --Shabidoo (talk) 00:12, 14 October 2014 (UTC)
Every time I walk past Gregg's I think, "what the hell, it's not like there's a god or anything," and promptly buy and eat a dozen sausage rolls. Fonzie (talk) 13:40, 14 October 2014 (UTC)
My local church has had to have its foundations reinforced because of the weight of all the atheists trundling past. SophieWilderModerator 18:51, 14 October 2014 (UTC)
No, actually I smell quite clean and lady like. Andy Schlafly is an educated man who is even an educator himself, and my public school teacher here in North Carolina was who told me about Conservapedia as a good alternative to Wikipedia for political matters. If his site says atheists are statisticly fatter than everyone else, I believe it. Most fat people I know smell probably because they're to big to move around in the shower, perhaps we shouldn't have a pissing contest as to who smells bad. By the way, nice way to invite a newbie to your site, block them for 3 months for asking a bloody question. Verizon FiOS (talk) 02:19, 17 October 2014 (UTC)
You may have just broken RW's collective patience with the verbal diarrhea you just put out. Jrock1203 (talk) 13:28, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

What kind of fuckup is this?[edit]

FBI warns of foreign attacks of cyber espionage and at the same time arguing encryption is a bad idea. So are they advocating us to not encrypt stuff so the foreign entities will have easier access? [[User:K61824|]][[User_talk:K61824|]] 05:38, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

It's acceptable to have different viewpoints on the two since the US will be very screwed indeed if the only thing left for the Chinese to hack into is the personal telephones of random citizens. King Skeleton (talk) 07:15, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

Wot? No grace?[edit]

Materialism is a dead philosophy. Get over it. (talk) 03:57, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

To be honest.... you editors or guardians of the galaxy... are so totally unintellectual ... it defies belief. It defies disbelief (talk) 04:11, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Cool story, bro. --Revolverman (talk) 04:50, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

Property rights versus human rights[edit]

"In its larger and juster meaning, it embraces every thing to which a man may attach a value and have a right; and which leaves to every one else the like advantage. … He has a property of peculiar value in his religious opinions, and in the profession and practice dictated by them. He has a property very dear to him in the safety and liberty of his person. He has an equal property in the free use of his faculties and free choice of the objects on which to employ them. In a word, as a man is said to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have a property in his rights." — James Madison, Property

Is there really that much of a difference? I was reading some of the documents on property written by the Founding Fathers and I'm wondering if their view is more accurate than the current one. What say you? — Melab (Talk) 22:16, 8 October 2014 (UTC)

I don't understand the question. What does "their view is more accurate than the current one" mean? €₳$£ΘĪÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:43, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
Property generally is an extension of oneself, that is, the substance of accumulated labor. The only time this is contested is, when one's property is inherited and not the accumulation of their own labor. nobs"It all depends what Isil is" 22:58, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
Most, if not all, property comes to people through ways other than "the fruit of one's labor" like gifts, use, finders keepers, and collection. The labor way always struck me as highly arbitrary. In fact, Locke most likely chose that principle so colonists could rob the Indians of the lands that they had not worked. As a result, objections to income taxation on those grounds never meant anything to me. It's good to have a conservative like nobs around here. Offers a different perspective on things. Sometimes an incredibly irritating perspective, but an alternative perspective nonetheless. — Melab (Talk) 23:31, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
I'm also not so sure that I'd say property is an extension of the self. Not only does it sound weird, but it also certainly can't apply to property like copyright, patents, and debt. Not so sure what your opinion is on that, nobs. — Melab (Talk) 23:44, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
An example: the view that property can only exist in society is more accurate than the view that it can exist in isolation. — Melab (Talk) 23:35, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
What makes 'property' different from mere possession or discovery is the sanction of law. You can possess a human corpse; but because of law you don't have any property rights in it. You can't possess the words of a song, but because of law you can have a property interest in them. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 01:39, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
Let's assume that most property does come to a person by their labor, homeownership is the best example. Yes, we do receive gifts (inheritance is a gift), let's leave that discussion til later. "The fruit of their labor" is among all but the self employed, not the property of the laborer; only a portion is, that which is paid out in wages. The raw produce of the worker is the property of the employer who allows the worker to use his/her property (or capital) to produce a value added good or service. What is paid out to the worker is indeed an extension of himself under law, agreed upon by worker & employer. If the law did not respect the substance of labor converted to some tangible property or intangible property right, we'd have a slave system. nobs"It all depends what Isil is" 02:50, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
That's quite a big jump. I still don't see how the "fruit of one's labor" or even labor itself is such an important subject. You get hired, you get paid, you get taxed. That's all, really. — Melab (Talk) 04:09, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
That is true. It is also something most libertarians fail to understand. Property is a legal concept, not an economic one, and it's woven up with many other legal things. — Melab (Talk) 04:12, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
What exactly do you get paid in? Money is worthless until it is converted into the produce of other people's labor. A certain amount is consumed immediately (food, gas, utilities, etc); the remainder is some form of chattel or property. Even savings in a bank that is not consumed immediately, or the remainder of money, is property lent out at interest. nobs"It all depends what Isil is" 04:17, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
(The following is personal opinion)Property as an extension of the right to the fruits of your labor isn't unreasonable, if that's what you're getting at. But the protection of rights mandates a degree of effort, and it's natural for the state to mandate that effort, sometimes directly, such as in the form of jury duty or negligence laws, sometimes indirectly in the form of taxes, which help practically fund and manage the protection of rights. Even in a purely freedom driven understanding of ideal government, mandates by the state are still completely and utterly necessary.
There's nothing inherently wrong with the notion that property rights are a kind of human right, but there's something wrong without considering the implications of an absolutist position about it. Ikanreed (talk) 14:43, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
Property rights maybe the most fundamental of human rights. Law didn't invent property rights out of it's butthole, but for a reason: property as a representation of unconsumed labor is an extension of the individual him/herself. If the law did not respect the individual's right to gain, benefit and retain some a portion of their labor, other's naturally would have claim to it and we'd exist in some sort of system of perpetual indenture or slavery. nobs"It all depends what Isil is" 18:54, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
Again, how do you come to this conclusion that no property means slavery. The only that a lack of legal protection for property implies…is the absence of property. That's not hard to follow. — Melab (Talk) 19:36, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
The question would be, "what is the meaning of liberty?". If a person had no access to capital, or possessed no capital of their own (capital being property, or what is the same, the accumulated substance of labor) they would be entirely at the mercy of the owners of capital for the tools and materials necessary to eke out an existence, with no hope ever of accumulating their own capital or assets. This would be a perpetual state of indenture, or servitude, or in some extreme cases of indebtedness, legalized slavery. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:14, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
This really sounds like some of the arguments I've heard socialists make. That aside, if property isn't legally protected, then no one would be able to claim property and make your scenario true. There are two main notions of liberty in modern political philosophy: Hobbesian and Lockean. No laws against theft = more Hobbesian freedom = less Lockean freedom. — Melab (Talk) 00:19, 10 October 2014 (UTC)
You bring up Locke; as a New Yorker once told me, the Indians Natives thought the idea of owning land was crazy, so when they settled for $24 for Manhattan, who really was screwing, or cheating, who? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 00:29, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
If I construct a really tall ladder and climb it, but doing so is really hard work, do I get a claim on the airspace I climbed into? This may seem like an odd corner case but if this is a basic human right I think we have to be absolutely clear on it. (talk) 13:58, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
"If a person had no access to capital, or possessed no capital of their own (capital being property, or what is the same, the accumulated substance of labor) they would be entirely at the mercy of the owners of capital for the tools and materials necessary to eke out an existence..." Since when did Rob become a commie? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 02:44, 14 October 2014 (UTC)
It does sound very much like something a socialist would argue, doesn't it? — Melab (Talk) 06:01, 14 October 2014 (UTC)
Not really, it's paraphrasing Adam Smith and other classical liberals (Frederic Bastiat for example). "Life, liberty, property" more accurately would be, a right to "life, liberty, and pursuit of property". Capitalism doesn't guarantee success, but "pursuit of property" (meaning, retaining rights to a portion of one's labor after all the bills and taxes are paid) is what Thomas Jefferson meant by "pursuit of happiness". nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:42, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, I like that TJ wised up on that little detail. Even super-crazy neo-classical economists would say that things you own and services you get aren't the only motivations to work. Jefferson cleaned up Locke's biggest misstatement, and I'm so glad he did. Ikanreed (talk) 20:49, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
Yabutt "pursuit of happiness" today means the right to read Hustler magazine and smoke pot. That only makes the pimps, pornographers and dope dealers accummulate capital, while the working class consumers of their wares become more ignorant and impoverished. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 21:02, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
Bastiat reads like he's got a stick in his ass. I thought he was a goto guy for libs, not cons. One more thing I've been confused by is the primary focus of people like Jefferson, Locke, Hobbes, Rousseau, and so forth: was it government or trade? I always considered government, law, and justice to be the main things the Founding Fathers ans Enlightenment political philosophers dealt with in their writings. Strangely, today's "classical liberals" are mostly economists or economics-oriented folks who wouldn't know the basics of law if it bit them in the ass. The scope of commercial and market matters is but a fraction of the political sphere. War, diplomacy, legislation, case law, marriage, judicial review, due process, various legal subjects, internet governance, and so forth are all missed by these "classical liberals". — Melab (Talk) 18:29, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Government, police, armies, and law evolved for one reason only: to protect property and property rights. Property (non-real property) is accumulated, undepreciated, unconsumed labor. Property rights in Real property, or Real Estate, likewise is amassed in the same manor. Now, after 1,000 years of a feudal order, the owners of property and those who retain rights never worked a day in their life. This of course led to tension among the toiling classes. The WhigsWikipedia were among the first of a non-aristocratic merchant class, establishing a meritocracy, who were more qualified to run a government than the drunken lecherous blueblood heirs who by rights inherited their fortunes.

Socialists fall in to the fallacy of the "benevolence of government" argument, that government is a good thing and has the best interests of people (including the destitute) at heart. This has never been true anywhere on the planet. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 18:54, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

That seems unnecessarily reductionist and almost certainly false. Law deals with traffic, contracts, space, aviation, IP, bankruptcy, consumer protection, product liability, trusts, marriage, families, construction, advertising, wills, sailing, etc. That's a whole lot more than just "property".
I've never accused anyone of believing government is benevolent because that's almost never the case. A neoconservative who thinks we should keep the USA PATRIOT Act doesn't do think that way because he thinks government is good, but rather because he thinks security is more important than liberty. A Christian fundamentalist who wants adultery made a crime doesn't believe in "big government" or "benevolent government" either. Rather, they think the Old Testament should be the basis of civil law. — Melab (Talk) 20:31, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Deconstructing your argument, "traffic, contracts, space, aviation, IP, bankruptcy, consumer protection, product liability, trusts, marriage, families, construction, advertising, wills, sailing, etc.", virtually all are to protect property rights (some are more specialized now, like ""Family Law" & domestic violence, so there's a stretch there), and I did say evolve. Adultery being a crime would be to eliminate no-fault divorce, not promote stoning. One injured party suffers damages (again, a basis in property law) as a result from adultery, and law is suppose to redress the balance, not blame the victim thru no-fault. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:48, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Sure, in some tangential way, but only for some of them. What about privacy, personality rights, libel, radio jamming, inciting violence, threats, identity theft, competition law, obstruction of justice, conspiracy, cyberbullying, aiding & abetting, harassment, animal abuse, blackmail, etc.? The translations you'd need to make your point would be almost trivial and make "property" as meaningless as "like". I was only using adultery as an example of why I wouldn't say they believed in the "benevolence of government". No one, absolutely no one, is damaged by adultery. I'm not sure how no-fault blames anyone for anything. — Melab (Talk) 21:24, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Let's not get too far away from property law & property rights. Libel, for example cause damages to a person's reputation that may affect their ability to earn future income -- restricting their ability to accumulate property. Hence, property damages. Adultery violates an oath & contract. If two parties swear to be faithful, and one breaks it after 30 years, the other has been defrauded out of 30 years of his/her life. How then should he/she have to give up 50% of assts, in a community property state, accumulated over 30 years? Where does he/she go to get 30 years of their life back when they are not guilty of anything, and the law treats them as if they were guilty of breach and fraud as well? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 21:50, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Honestly, that really seems to be stretching it. The ability to accumulate property is different from property itself. I suppose you could use that as a justification for laws against libel, but you'll also run afoul free speech values. The view of marriage as a contract doesn't resonate well with the Catholic side of me. Too commercial for my tastes (which isn't to say I hate commerce). Kind of debases the institution, really. Assuming it can be called a contract, then the most they'd be guilty of is breach. Even then, that's breach of contract, not really anything property-like (though the "transaction" still involves property). Not sure if two people counts as communal, either. — Melab (Talk) 22:07, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Marriage is a separate legal entity from the individual involved, kinda like a partnership or LLC. That's why there's different laws governing joint tax returns or joint checking accounts. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 22:21, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
I never realized until now how legal-speak could suck the sacredness out of something. Getting back to your claim about property and law, I feel it's incorrect because things like, say, hacking and trespass are two very different crimes. I mean, you've got minimum wage, medical law, statutes like HIPAA, neglect, etc. Also, criminal law differentiates between property offenses and personal offenses. — Melab (Talk) 22:52, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Property confers a right, or title (from which we get "entitlement", such as food stamps today). Traffic laws are to protect property damage and personal injury, again, personal injury causes loss of the ability "to pursue happiness" in the future. Same as laws regarding sailing. Law in space is related to Real Property. Consumer protection means you can't be screwed out of your property. Likewise product liability means the property rights of buyers don't end when he sells his cash for a negligent or defective product. I could go on. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 23:08, 18 October 2014 (UTC)


I moved the article on property into the mainspace. Tell me where it falls short. — Melab (Talk) 03:41, 11 October 2014 (UTC)

A good basic start. It needs RWising. Marxist and Libertarian views on property etc. How a property right is established in the first place could be mentioned. Who first gets to say "this land is mine"? SophieWilderModerator 10:17, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
James Madison's quote expresses the liberal view quite succinctly. — Melab (Talk) 20:59, 11 October 2014 (UTC)
Here's a good quote:
"“Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” ― Frédéric Bastiat. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:55, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
I'll add it if it's not in there already. RW may be critical of libertarianism, but diversity of quotes in a section showcasing various opinions on the matter is important, too. — Melab (Talk) 18:43, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
I think that its relevance to Rationalwiki could come through if we focus on some controversies. But I've only written a few sentences.Vajrapani (talk) 07:11, 20 October 2014 (UTC)

Video games and violence[edit]

You would think that a community that has long argued that video games don't cause violence would refrain from threatening a critic with violence. I know, I know, #notallgamers, amirite? (talk) 03:20, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

And you'd certainly think they wouldn't rally behind someone who claimed that video games helped shape Elliot Rodger's fantasies, yet Milo is one of their biggest heroes. ShapeshiftingLizard ~▲~ hear me roar ~▲~ 03:37, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
There may be some overlap between those who have long argued against violance causing and those who would threaten violence, but we cannot say for sure how much. It is best not to jump to conclusions and throw around generalisations. Nullahnung (talk) 07:06, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
The email sent to USU doesn't say anything about video games and focuses instead on its author's (supposed) grievance against feminism. Men with this attitude have carried out shooting massacres before on numerous occasions, so it looks like it could be a credible threat (compared to the bomb threat at that video game awards ceremony, for example). I don't see any reason to view this particular threat as something the "video game community" has done. ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 07:47, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Well there's the fact that nobody outside of gamers has ever heard of Sarkeesian, for one. Why the hell would a non-gamer do this? She has produced very little that isn't about video games. Abed Nadir (talk) 08:50, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
That IRC leak of the 4Chan channal showed more then a few people in this don't give two shit about games, and just liked having people to target with their bullshit. A real life version of the Hateocracy I guess. --Revolverman (talk) 10:06, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Correction: Anita has specifically stated that one of the threats she personally received "did claim affiliation with #gamergate". Abed Nadir (talk) 08:56, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Sooo, threateners overlap with GG, GG overlaps with gamers, therefore gamers overlaps with threateners... (it's a possibility, but it's not a logical conclusion nonetheless). I'd like to see a Venn diagram. Nullahnung (talk) 10:12, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
I think you're missing the circle on the Venn diagram for "misogynistic wankers." I can't really buy this is games making people violent when there's the whole "being a hateful fanatic" part which explains it quite well on its own. I mean come on, we had this whole debate once with violent movies back when VCRs first came along. King Skeleton (talk) 10:16, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Yes, imo this is ill-placed snark: http://rationalwiki.org/w/index.php?title=Gamergate&curid=167903&diff=1373098&oldid=1373097
"But it was too good to pass up!"
Ech, fine, if you have to. Nullahnung (talk) 10:23, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, that only works if they're either treating gamers as a monolithic group with uniform attitudes, or they're actually arguing it was the exact same people both times. King Skeleton (talk) 10:30, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Talking about "gamers" and non-gamers as binary groups is pretty useless. Most likely the guy who wrote the email has played some video games, but then so have all of us. He may have heard of Sarkeesian through video game community specifically, or just as likely (given the things he says in the email) through MRA sources ranting about her. The email strongly suggests that he's motivated by hatred of feminists rather than specifically anything about video game content and criticism. WẽãšẽĩõĩďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 12:47, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────For the record, I didn't actually mean to imply that all gamers are like this. I guess I haven't been following this conversation all that closely. I have nothing against gamers in general, but I despise Gamergate, and this guy is exactly why. Abed Nadir (talk) 16:47, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

But what even makes this guy "Gamergate" at all when his email threat says nothing about video games whatsoever, let alone anything about Zoe Quinn or alleged journalistic corruption? I find it pathetic that everyone is buying into the idea that Gamergate is the epic struggle between the video game community and its critics, rather than just one stupid incident that it's better for everybody to move on from. This is the narrative touted by the losers who inflated Gamergate as a supposed controversy in the first place; why are people who oppose Gamergate accepting it so critically? And here you're Gamergate to something that doesn't even seem to be about games at all, just because it concerns somebody who is sort of connected to some of the things that kicked off in the wake of Gamergate. Is everything that Anita Sarkeesian has ever said or done and everything that ever happens to her throughout her life now officially a part of "Gamergate"? WėąṣėḷőįďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:05, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
I have to add, it doesn't particularly help that mainstream news sources are either tacking on "GamerGate" to it or are mentioning it as part of their coverage. (See: Washington Post, Standard Examiner, Forbes, The Guardian, etc.). Noir LeSable (talk) 19:56, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Sarkeesian says some of the threat messages mentioned "Gamergate", which would be making him "Gamergate" at all. Of course, she could just be a lying bitch - David Gerard (talk) 22:59, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
She received multiple threats, one of which mentioned Gamergate. The one that's getting press attention is the email from a guy threatening to go on a shooting spree, which doesn't. ŴêâŝêîôîďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 07:41, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
turns out the threat was a bunch of bull http://www.usu.edu/ust/index.cfm?article=54179 (talk) 13:34, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
No, the threat was effective, on two counts: 1. It shut down Sarkeesian's talk; 2. It reminded Sarkeesian, and all women that try to speak out against patriarchy, that men will resort to violence, sometimes sexualized, sometimes physical, sometimes emotional/psychological, in order to prevent that from happening. Perhaps there wasn't a guy with a gun, but, at the end of gthe day, that doesn't mater. The pen is mightier than the sword, and the largely defensive weapon of keyboard can inflict emotional terror towards a political end as well as a gun. The threat wasn't bull; the threat itself was the weapon, and an powerful one. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs 13:57, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
I think [Insert Name Here] of meant that the threat was likely not genuine, rather than that it was not "effective" or that it was all just a typhoon in a teacup. Noir LeSable (talk) 16:32, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
It's pretty vague what the police have actually done to assess the credibility of this anonymous threat. But anyway, someone intending a massacre would usually just do it rather than issuing threats, and somebody issuing these threats is most likely just doing it to get the response they want rather than actually planning a massacre. The elephant in the room here is that it wasn't actually the threat itself that made Sarkeesian pull out but the fact that the university couldn't legally prevent folks bringing guns to the lecture. As somebody said on Twitter, the Second Amendment stomped on the First. WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:32, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
Thunderf00t is laughing it up. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:38, 16 October 2014 (UTC)
From the looks of it, I think its more of a reminder that some morons on the internet will say anything for a reaction. Let's just hope the FBI finds this person and clears things up.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 02:14, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

Threats are disgusting, but let's not forget that the threats are flying both ways, even though the game media 'surprisingly' only covers one side. So if you want to generalize a group by the trolls, then everyone is a terrorist. --GTac (talk) 12:11, 20 October 2014 (UTC)

Pretty much lies and bullshit. Oh look, we have an article with references - David Gerard (talk) 14:41, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
But it's not, and your attitude about that really is telling. Only one side is allowed, any victims on the other side are ignored. Look up Boogie's twitter posts if you want, though judging from your article you only seem to be picking out twitter posts which support your side. --GTac (talk) 14:48, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
"Should women be allowed to create and play video games without fear of being murdered in real life? Let's hear both sides of the story." - David Gerard (talk) 20:33, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
Wow, you sure schooled him. How's this site gotten so full of such trainwrecks? --Someon (talk) 22:18, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
Just curious: can you provide an example of the threats going the other way? (This is a legitimate question, I'm interested).TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 22:29, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
Maram Susli, Syrian rights activists and GG supporter, was harrassed by anti-GG Robert Caruso, with such beautiful remarks like "I will enjoy your beloved Syria being torn apart with violence and Assad in exile even more". He deleted his Tweets but someone archived them.
The best thing about fence sitting is being able to mock everyone involved. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg Just live your life in a series of sexy poses and pray every night for a nuclear war. 16:23, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
This entire dispute is getting old, very fast too. I have mostly ignored this scandal (for a lack of a better word) but my understanding of this whole situation is that some gamers and trolls got violent towards women who were making mountains of molehills. The threats and stuff directed at anti-GG people and pro-GG people must be ended, with legal action if necessary (for threats of violence), indeed the quote at the top of the Gamergate page sums up how I think of current events related to this scandal. For certain the reason why this whole mess started is because the gaming community at large does not appreciate pedantic pontificating directed towards them. But of course we've moved beyond that point and the fact that this has gotten so out of hand shows quite clearly that there are unethical (understatement) misogynists in the gaming community and self-righteous, pedantic moralists in the social justice movement. What should be taken away from this whole controversy then? Simple, this controversy blew up out of proportion first because women took video games too seriously and second because the gamers took their criticism of video games too seriously and went way past the bounds of reasonable discussion (as did the people who responded to them though apparently to a lesser degree). Could it ever have occurred to you people (all of the people involved in this controversy not just the guy I'm responding to) that not everything has to be political or that not all criticism is meant to be personal? Apparently not. Alsto003 (talk) 03:33, 22 October 2014 (UTC) Alex
That's wonderfully plausible moderation, but you write like someone who's only read about Sarkeesian's videos, not watched them - David Gerard (talk) 12:24, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
I think the more you see of those videos, the crazier they seem. Whereas most written forms of mainstream media seem to either praise or ignore the quality of them in favor of reporting the bigger issue of death threats.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 23:33, 22 October 2014 (UTC)

Adam and Eve as sexism, Christian eugenics and fictional portrayals of religion.[edit]

This discussion was moved to User talk:Exiled Encyclopedist. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 06:56, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

Moving to Colorado[edit]

Any Coloradans with suggestions, communities or stuff? I'm getting a job in Boulder to be more specific. Zero (talk - contributions) 15:52, 20 October 2014 (UTC)

Depending on what you like for a community, nearby burbs of Louisville and Lafayette (my home) are pretty cool and notably more affordable. For the true adventure, try Nederland. It's an almost-collapsed former mining town that, conveniently, has bus service directly in to Boulder (as do most nearby communities). Bikes? You like bikes? If so, you're in a kind of heaven as long as you find a place between the dawdling college kids and the super-fast pro cyclists. MarmotHead (talk) 15:53, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
I like in-line skating personally. I tend to go for hours on end and there is a nice trail nearby to my home that I abuse. Aside, it would seem like the real estate in that section of town is about the same or more expensive than where I am looking. If you know of a good place, I need a 1,000 sqft apartment and would like it kept under $1k/month. Details don't matter. Zero (talk - contributions) 16:19, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
In-line skating? I don't know enough about that, but Boulder has a very friendly large bike/ped/skater trail system based around creeks (that recently had their 500 year flood). Louisville does, too, just not as much. <$1K? That's a challenge. Boulder has some kinds of restrictions on new housing size (low supply) and, when combined with being a college town (high demand), it's expensive. A local agency "Housing Helpers" has a good variety of listings on line, though. I used them to find my place. MarmotHead (talk) 17:18, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
I sent them an email. Their site quite honestly has some severe defects. Duplicate listings, listings with no rent costs, etc. I was kinda looking for temporary corporate housing but with nothing under some $2,300/month for a tiny place...well. Not having it would be correct. Zero (talk - contributions) 19:00, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
True, true. I actually went in person (I was staying at a nearby hotel) and then researched the selections on my own. If you just teleport to Boulder, it'd be fine ... MarmotHead (talk) 19:09, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

Wot? No physics here?[edit]

Why no articles on David Bohm, Ed Fredkin, Karl Zuse, Leonard Susskind and many others? Not keen on Physics here? It may be too difficult for High School editors? (talk) 08:49, 22 October 2014 (UTC)

Not even a section on Kurt Godel or John Conway? Maths is not a strong point here either? (talk) 08:58, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, before you make snide comments about the content on the site, maybe you should look at the site's mission, as well as what "off mission" means, before you look like a complete tit. PsyGremlinRunāt! 09:50, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Just out of curiosity - got a link to the mission? I've just rootled around & all I found was this. I thought there was a reference on the main page or the "welcome" template but … Scream!! (talk) 12:34, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
I suppose this is it: RationalWiki. Not the clearest. Scream!! (talk) 12:38, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Try Wikipedia. — HaamerModerator 12:18, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Our mission statement is right where it's always been - and where it belongs - on the Main_page Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 15:29, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
We've got more than enough physics woo around. For instance, Nassim Haramein is in the middle of a minor edit war and the talk page is filled with woo-backers. Noir LeSable (talk) 18:20, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
Oh good. Obviously psychiatry is a pseudoscience like homeopathy. Hope you have some good articles on this. Cheers! (talk) 18:31, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
Ah yes, because nobody has ever had their schizophrenia successfully treated with neuroleptics. I'll assume you mean psychology which you also, clearly know little about. AyzmoCheers 18:50, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
wE CAN all have our weakness in life solved by a tranquiliser ... I know more about psychology than you know about quantum mechanics ... discuss. (talk) 04:04, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
All my problems in life has been simultaneously created, and solved by liberal doses of alcohol. Tielec01 (talk) 04:06, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
It's worth noting that I know a hell of a lot about quantum mechanics. - Grant (talk) 05:20, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

Do not unblock Brxbrx[edit]

Brxbrx has been blocked for six months. This is an official decision from the Board of Trustees. He is blocked because he repeatedly acted to preserve clearly libelous material on this wiki. We will NOT tolerate individuals whose actions put the RationalMedia Foundation at risk. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:54, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

I've been debating whether to stick my neck out again, and it seems my conscience won't let me sit so let me respond to this decision.
As everyone here knows, when dealing with highly unpopular individuals we must be hyper-vigilant that we are being fair and reasonable - it's all too easy to stand up for the popular contributor. That is not the case here - Brx is widely considered a pest.
Can I also say that I value our board's contributions, but in this case they have acted poorly and in addition, in my opinion, deceptively.
Brx was no longer preserving libelous material, and stopped immediately once he was warned by David Gerard (frankly a board member without so open an agenda against him as Nutty). The claim that he was acting to preserve libelous material is false, but to be fair to the board maybe they posted the above as a reductionistic take on the situation - not wanting to confuse the casual observer.
What Brx was doing was questioning the decision to remove the libelous material. As an aside, as I sit here typing this, I'm acutely aware that I have no idea what or what I can't mention in relation to this issue without risking a banning - this is an issue I will return to shortly. Without going into detail Brx's crime was to question whether said insertions were libelous or not - are we now not allowed to question the decision of a board member without being banned for six months - am I to be banned for this post? Surely the appropriate response for the board was to consider Brx's question and, if it decided that the material was libelous, inform him that his concerns were not valid and any further discussion would result in a ban. Furthermore we must remember that Nutty's decision was made unilaterally at the time, without the consent of the board. Is the board now going to ban any member that questions a representative's decision, even if it is made in the heat of the moment?
The Board remit clearly does not allow it to make decisions on content or the general running of the community - this remit does include protecting the legal interests of the foundation, which is why the legal angle of this issue must be emphasised for the action of the board to be appropriate. Brx was warned that his actions were legally compromising by the board member & secretary - Nutty Roux, a stellar contributor to the wiki and community. However, Nutty also has a very clear agenda against Brx, such that it is difficult to determine when Nutty speaks as a board representative and when he speaks as an annoyed contributor. No other board member counselled Brx that he was not able to question the decision of the board representative - I wonder if David Gerard has counselled Brx to stop questioning the decision would we be in this situation. It would be very hard for Brx to determine if he is being victimised (which is not unusual) by a fellow contributor or recieving a sober warning from a board representative. To compound this issue the first response of the board is to ban him for 6 months with very little elucidated reasoning behind the decision.
I don't wish to be obtuse; I am intimating that the board members have used a vague and murky legal issue to enact a ban against a contributor that they disliked, knowing that they can hide behind obfuscation and amorphous legal gobbledy-gook.
Furthermore, let's assume that Brx ran afoul of some vague, ill-defined legal issue. There is the question of the consistency of the punishment. During this episode another contributor abused their tech powers and acted less than ethically (own words) to ban Brx unilaterally. There is no question that he abused his powers, as he has admitted it himself. His abuse was in clear violation of written community guidelines and long-established behavioural norms and yet he is not punished at all, while the person who has run afoul of murky ill-defined boundaries is banned for six months.
In fairness this issue is multi-faceted, the board has no remit to ban the member who abused his tech powers, so we can't hold that against them. This issue goes to a community who seems to have lost some of the anti-authoritarian fire in it's belly. Communities change, and perhaps I have been left behind, but there was a time when such clear abuse would have raised the ire of many valued contributors. Tielec01 (talk) 00:41, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Two issues here, then:
1: Is Brxbrx guilty?
2: Was his ban motivated by personal spite?
Some links to Brxbrx's (purported?) libel might help answer 1. FᴜᴢᴢʏCᴀᴛPᴏᴛᴀᴛᴏ, Esϙᴜɪʀᴇ (talk/stalk) 04:15, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
I feel like I should point out that linking to libel is also libel. I don't believe linking to what Brxbrx wrote is something we should be doing. - Grant (talk) 04:24, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Agreed, the board have decided the information was libelous, I accept that decision and see no point in looking at the potentially libelous claims. I disagree with the fairness of their decision as detailed above. Tielec01 (talk) 04:41, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Tielec's distortions of the truth and wild conspiracy theories aside, this is a settled issue. Brxbrx was in the wrong, was proven to have been very much in the wrong, and outside of Tielec and Brx, nobody has bought that this was a grand conspiracy to bully Brx. The only thing that is different now is that the RMF, after both Brxbrx and I asked them about their opinion, has weighed in. Furthermore, they weighed in unanimously (every single Board member voted) that I was right to block Brxbrx, that I did not abuse my power when my intervention was undone and I sysoprevoked him, and that his actions in continuing to post libelous information after multiple RMF members (Sterile, David Gerard, Nutty) told him not to were warranting of an official response by the RMF. TLDR: nothing further to see here. Move along. Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 07:52, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Well there's not much to respond to above, but for reference here is Nutty Roux's (Former Editor) blocks of Brx over the years[6]. Some choice block reasons - "Flushing a turd that keeps bobbing up", "Flushing the toilet. Gunna start removing your rights and anyone's who in unlocks you. Get ready for a coop and hopefully a community ban", "Horrible. Can we finally be done with this worthless skidmark?" & "Bullying and harassing". Here is Sterile's[7]. Again some choice quotes - "Whoops my finger slipped" & "Spambot". Surely RNS, putting aside your clear dislike for me, when you view these logs a pattern of harassing Brx emerges? How can I not question whether the current ban is motivated by the board members dislike for Brx? Tielec01 (talk) 08:32, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
I wish to point out that Brx continued to reference and link to the potential libellous information during the arguments that followed with Nutty and RNS. You may not have noticed them because that particular sequence of events occurred across multiple talk pages, but it occurred nonetheless. This was after David Gerard and other RMF members told him to stop. While you may still disagree with the block length or reason, and I personally won't comment on that, your assertion that it was a one-time thing that then immediately stopped is incorrect. - Grant (talk) 08:41, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
(EC) Nevermind the fact that I (not Nutty) was the one who blocked Brxbrx and removed his user rights, and then only after multiple warnings to stop what he was doing (notice: when he walked away for a couple of days, so did I until he came back to war some more). You've certainly proven Nutty doesn't like Brxbrx. But you've not proven anything beyond that that vindicate Brxbrx. And you've certainly not proven that there is a conspiracy in the RMF to get rid of him. If there was, do you not think they'd have permabanned him instead? Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 08:42, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

Grant, although I followed this reasonably closely, it's certainly possible I missed something. The day after it all happened I had to fly out for business and didn't return until recently. Anything that happened in the meantime I would have missed as I was in butt-fuck nowhere with incredibly slow internet connections. To be precise Grant, you are saying that Brx was warned by a board member, who was not Nutty, not to question the decision to remove libelous information? Do you have easily accessible diffs of that you would send through to me? Understand if you can't be fucked. Tielec01 (talk) 08:50, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

That's not exactly what I'm saying. In Brx's counter-arguments about removing the information/links in question, he repeated the very same information/links. As you can imagine, if the source was libellous, then so was his re-posting/re-linking of it. As such, I'm not saying he was warned not to question the decision, but rather to stop posting the same information while doing so. I'm not sure how easily accessible the diffs still are (probably not too hard to find if you go hunting through Brx's user contributions), but I would rather not link them directly myself given the chance that they are potentially libellous. - Grant (talk) 08:56, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
(EC) See here and here. And before you jump to a conclusion, please note that before DG posted something in kind on Brxbrx's talkpage, he had already reposted the offending link in a couple other places. Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 08:58, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Hmmm... without being able to post diffs this will be a fruitless conversation, however, I have looked through Brx's user contributions, to the best of my ability, and I can only see one instance where (after being warned by DG) he posted links, and he was pointing out that libelous information was still accessible on the wiki (and indeed I assume still is). Any other comments were discussions around libel and defending himself from the bans he was receiving. Still, I can't see how we can have this conversation given that I'm not sure how far I can go before I end up banned;having to spend my time at work in fruitful endeavors rather than editing articles about shitty psychics. If you feel like it, email me any diffs and I promise the emails will be deleted after I have read them (for what it's worth). Tielec01 (talk) 09:19, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
So in essence, the RWF has no sense of reading comprehension and blocked a user for pointing out a problem with libelous material on the wiki. Lovely to know you guys are charge of our finances. That is, if Nutty Roux does not have a active agenda against Brx. Which is like saying the grass doesn't grow when rain falls on it. --Madman (talk) 11:06, 28 October 2014 (UTC)The Madman

On the arrogance of browsers, part II[edit]

If you, like me, switched to Pale Moon from Firefox, and you still have a 24.* version, you are going to want to at least temporarily turn off browser updates, at least for the interim, because you don't want to be frogmarched into version 25. If it happened to you involuntarily, you can get the last good version here. Be sure to turn off updates as soon as you run it.

One thing that the 'update' does to you involuntarily is that it no longer tells websites that it's a version of Firefox. This breaks many sites, including in all likelihood many banking and credit card sites. It also broke my legal research site. It also broke DeviantArt.

Apparently the old version was "lying" about which browser it was, which breaks Robot's Rules of Order or some such. Now I know that the Firefox user base has been in freefall recently, as a result of arrogant decisions by those programmers forcing detestable changes in the interface, and their arrogant response: "don't like it? Install another add on." I think Firefox jumped the shark when it removed the ability to turn off Javascript. You don't disable a security feature without telling anybody. Their arrogant response then: "Don't like it? Edit your about:config file....Or install another add on." Well, fuck you too.

So I kind of understand Pale Moon's desire to announce itself to the world, and let the dataminers know that its users aren't using Firefox any more. But this breaks the web. I understand that they're going to fix this in another update, but it hasn't been fixed yet.

Any time the browser itself steps between me and what I'm doing, it's broken. I need unchanging, stable reliability from a web browser more than I need updates. Telling me the internet's a scary place just isn't persuasive any more. Whatever dangers lurk for the users of a months-old version are remote and speculative, while the problems letting the updates run are immediate and obvious. I suppose I can eventually go back to an extended maintenance last good version of Firefox, from the time before they decided to take Javascript control within the browser itself out of your hands.

But I don't need to be handed extra chores by browser programmers who decide to change the way the browser works and impose those changes automatically and without explanations before they're allowed to happen. I'm not really all that interested in the details of web browsers. I shouldn't feel the need to monitor the developers to be aware of whatever unwelcome surprises they're planning in future versions. All I want is for the browser to do its job and get out of the way.

One more thing: the 25.* versions of Pale Moon drop support for Windows XP. Their recommendations are typically arrogant: they want you to pay Microsoft for a newer operating system that will run like sludge on your systems specced for XP. What they're eager to tell you not to do is to keep the un-updated version that still works. Do they eat with the same hands that they type that stuff with? - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 14:40, 22 October 2014 (UTC)

Is it really unreasonable to tell your consumer base that they are dropping support on a OS that's been succeeded by 3 (soon to be 4) newer OS's and is no longer maintained by it's provider? At some point they are going to have to and I don't see how it's all that evil to say "get a new OS"; it isn't like i can complain something won't work on a computer i use my windows 98 disc on; things moved on.--Miekal 16:14, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
I find that I have software that works on XP but not 7 as well. A good deal of the software I actually bought and continue to use is ten to fifteen years old. Nothing that costs money is an adequate substitute, because it costs money. Nothing that isn't my old software is an adequate substitute, because I already know how the software I've been using for a long time works. So I intend to continue to use XP on the systems that were built to run XP for as long as the hardware lasts. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 16:24, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
And that's fine, but again, is it really unreasonable for a company that makes updated software (that you aren't having to pay for) eventually not work on that OS? I agree with your points, and they are good points, but I just don't see how you can call them evil because they chose to not include support for an outdated OS anymore. --Miekal 16:29, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Well, look, it really isn't the browser vendor's responsibility to make sure every site knows that their browser exists and doesn't do stupid things based on their version string. You remember a few years back when half the big corporate/government websites required IE, but worked fine with every other browser once you falsified your user agent string? Even today, half the time sites that do this won't recognise the Linux version of the browser even though it's the same code base. What you have is exactly the same problem. The solution is to beat it in to the tiny, tiny brains of the low-rent, low-bid outsourcing outfits who make these sites that doing compatibility checking by exclusion is insane. Different browsers shouldn't have to masquerade as more popular ones to get sites to work, that's a self-perpetuating problem since no one will ever test compatibility on a browser that their web logs say doesn't exist. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 16:52, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
What makes it, if not evil, at least annoying, is their suggestion to downgrade to a more recent OS that will not work well with your hardware. Like Microsoft needs more of your money. Their attempt to scare people away from keeping the last good version that works with their system is also a questionable judgment call. It seems more and more that the last good browser was Lynx. (ec) In that case, wouldn't a well made browser claim to be whatever the website wants it to be? - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 16:57, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
How on earth is it going to know that? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 17:07, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Apparently, with a user agent string, it's possible to make Pale Moon identify as Firefox -- or as IE or Chrome. It would seem to me to be at least possible to make a browser that claimed it could be all of them at once. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 17:14, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Not really. That's just a convenient lie to circumvent bad website coding. There's no officially mandated standard as to what form the user agent string should take. You'll probably find your user agent string is already telling the site its rendering engine is Gecko version whatever, which is the important part, it may even hint that it's firefox compatible. The problem is that that string is almost impossible to parse, because it was never meant to be machine readable. The only reason anyone is attempting to read it at all is to try and be bug compatible with buggy browsers. Here's the thing though, if sites just assume that browsers they can't identify are standards compliant then the whole issue goes away. Either the site fails on that browser, or the site works as intended. If it fails, then it's a browser bug you can raise with the vendor. The other way around, there's nothing at all a browser can do about a site that just assumes it's broken and doesn't even try. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 17:32, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Yes, that would be ideal. But that's apparently not the way many websites I need to access operate. The only thing that actually works is to tell the website whatever it wants to hear, the truth be damned. So the ideal browser is the one that can pretend to be any browser at any site. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 19:03, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
Yes, you can pretend to be anything you like, but that's distinct from being able to pretend to be, as you wrote previously "all of them at once". User agent is a free-form string, sent from the web browser to the web site with every single request it makes. So you can set it to whatever you like, but you can't set it to "everything" any more than you could change your name so that you had the same name as everybody on Earth.
The result of people trying to gues things based on the User Agent field is a mess, here's the UA for the app I'm using to write this post: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:30.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/30.0 now here's the one for a recent Safari Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10_6_8) AppleWebKit/537.13+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1.7 Safari/534.57.2. You'll notice that although Safari and Firefox are completely unrelated, the strings are similar. Why do they both start with Mozilla? Well Firefox is made by an organisation called Mozilla.org but that's almost coincidental, the real reason is that Mozilla was the codename of the Netscape web browser project and so that string is treated as proof that you're a modern web browser and some sites assume any browser that's not "Mozilla" can't render modern web pages. OK, now the second one says "like Gecko" that's because the word Gecko is the name of the core engine of the Mozilla project and that like Mozilla came to mean "Modern" so some sites expect it. KHML is the name of the project from which Apple's Web Kit forked, so they mention that in case sites are compatible with the older KHTML browser (named for KDE, the popular desktop environmen). Tialaramex (talk) 22:35, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
It's also worth noting in this discussion that maintaining any kind of software support for deprecated operating systems is generally not simple (or worth the developer's time). As technology moves forward, old software tends to lose the ability to comply with new standards, so continuing to support it becomes similar to building two entirely different products; one for the modern software and one for the old software. Both of these "forks" end up requiring constant maintenance and support, and this tends to be very cumbersome. It shouldn't be surprising that companies choose to abandon outdated operating systems.
Also, Smerdis, you appear not to have paid much attention the last time I said this, but the threat of security vulnerabilities in outdated browsers/operating systems is not a scare tactic. I will repeat that the relatively low-traffic websites my web development firm builds get attacked relentlessly by bots attempting to plant malicious code. All it takes is one slip-up, or one vulnerability in the software we use, and suddenly any visitor to our sites using an outdated browser with a known security vulnerability finds themselves infected. Of course, not all web development firms provide ongoing support like we do, so plenty of sites get themselves hacked and just sit there like that. You may obviously choose to take risks with your own security if you feel like it, but shrugging off automatic security updates as mere scare tactics is silly. - Grant (talk) 22:58, 22 October 2014 (UTC)
It isn't that I'm not paying attention. Yes, I am aware of the fact that browser updates contain security patches. (Of course, they also bring new security holes as well, the same way a newer operating system would.) All I want is a browser that won't wreck my interface or break the Web because of the inscrutable whims of the developers. I don't want to be made to pay attention to the future plans of the browser developers; life is too short. I want a browser that's stable, just works, and works the same way from one month to the next. I stuck with Firefox until the Australis disaster struck, and fled to Pale Moon to escape it. It remains true that any dangers inherent in a months-old version are remote, speculative, and have other countermeasures besides browser updates. The problems caused by the updates are obvious nuisances right now. I acknowledge the risks, but do not let them force my decision. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 01:00, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

Things change, that scares and annoys me. Tielec01 (talk) 02:41, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

It was a bit more serious than that. All of a sudden, websites I rely on to get work done were refusing to display and telling me that I needed to "update my browser" to one they would recognize. Calling Dr. Bombay did not produce a way to get around the browser check. I was forced to reinstall the last good version and turn off automatic updates if I wanted to get anything done. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 02:57, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
That was your mistake, the only reasonably response to this situation would be to light up a cigar, pour a stiff scotch and retire. Technology may change, but I reserve the right not to have to.Tielec01 (talk) 03:05, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

The actual answer is to fake your useragent. If Pale Moon is a Firefox fork, it should take Firefox addons, e.g. [8] (amongst many that do this job) - David Gerard (talk) 11:33, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

I understand that now, and it works. I remain annoyed at having an update pull the rug out from under me, which is why I no longer am using Firefox itself. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 03:30, 25 October 2014 (UTC)

Switching on the proxy block again[edit]

The vandalism is getting to unfunny levels again, and it's basically through proxies. I think these are Gamergate buds showing their ire the way they're best at, i.e. pissing on the carpet. So I fear we need to switch the proxy blocker on again. Email me at dgerard@gmail.com if you're a regular who's stupendously inconvenienced by this - David Gerard (talk) 19:54, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

Creation Evidence Museum growing dinosaurs[edit]

Sure, in Jurassic Park they brought dinosaurs back to life by cloning them. But the founder of this gem of a "museum" in Glen Rose,Texas plans to 'grow' dinosaurs.

From Wikipedia: "One of the museum's projects is a "hyperbaric biosphere", a chamber which the museum hopes will reproduce the atmospheric conditions that these creationists postulate for Earth before the Great Flood, and enable them to grow dinosaurs. Baugh says that these conditions made creatures live longer, and get larger, smarter and nicer."

Neato! AugustusCaesar (talk) 02:14, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

And it'll be full of jars of peanut butter. SophieWilderModerator 08:52, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
I see a way to solve two problems in one. Sic PETA on him. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 15:01, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
Wait, does this guy believe in spontaneous generation? Frederick♠♣♥♦ 03:49, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
It's a popular idea among creationists that most of the water for the Great Flood came from a "firmament" of water vapor in the upper atmosphere. The greenhouse effect from this water vapor made the climate on the earth much more humid than it is today, and this caused lizards to grow into dinosaurs. AugustusCaesar (talk) 04:47, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
Just like it says in the Bible. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 09:25, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
There's a point in creationist crazy-lad where you're actually taking genesis LESS "literally" than those who think it's a poetic description of evolution. AugustusCaesar (talk) 18:18, 25 October 2014 (UTC)

Voter ID laws[edit]

Can anyone explain to me why Americans get so upset about voter ID laws? I mean, in my country you must present your cédula (ID card) to vote and no one has ever made a big deal about it. Maybe it's because ID cards are not as necessary in everyday life as it is over here ? Are ID cards not free in the US or something? Do Americans even have the an equivalent to a cédula, as in, the only valid legal document for many, many proceedings? |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg Good job guys. You were so busy karate fighting that you let Jesus escape. 01:47, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

I can't speak for the States, but I will use Canada as an example, since it already provides a counterpoint. The cost and availability of ID depends on the province, and there is no overarching federal ID one can use throughout the country. Generally speaking, most forms of photo ID cost money, and those that don't still require paperwork and aren't necessary in day-to-day life. I have photo ID on me at all times because I drive, but for those who don't, ID can be a problem. In this way, voter ID laws would be more likely to affect the poorer elements of society, as they are less likely to have existing ID (from driving), and are less likely to have the time and energy to spend going out of their way to get another form of photo ID. This is probably analogous in the United States. - Grant (talk) 01:53, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Oh, I see. It's something of a culture shock for me, given how an ID is pretty much required if you want to do... well, anything. Want a driving license? Need an ID. Want to open a bank account? Need an ID. It's the norm rather than the exception in Central and South America. I thought this was something that was only done back in Dominican Republic, but then I moved to Costa Rica and learned that it's the norm. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg Put de lime in de coconut, call me in de mornin' 02:20, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
ID of some kind is still required around here for things like opening bank accounts, but the majority of banks don't need photo ID in order to open an account. A birth certificate is usually enough. Of course, that differs based on the bank, but regardless, many services don't require photo ID. - Grant (talk) 02:24, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
What about people who can't afford a car and don't have enough money to bother with a bank account? Tielec01 (talk) 02:36, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
They're out of luck! Grant's right about the US, but it's not just the poor that will feel the brunt of it. In big cities, people are less likely to have cars and, therefore, less likely to need the main form of ID. In some places, student ID's are considered insufficient. Plus, the most accepted forms of ID can seem hard to get for non-financial reasons, too (bureaucracy and the like). It most heavily affects likely Democratic voters living in places with Republican governors/legislatures. Also, unlike most other developed countries, there's a strong suspicion here in the US about having any kind of universal ID. Why? Standard anti-government paranoia. MarmotHead (talk) 02:40, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
No universal ID? Come one, even Costa Rica is years ahead of you. But we have universal health care, so of course we're just some bunch of rice-eating commies. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg Do you accept Madoka as your Lord and Savior? 02:43, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, this is the US, one of only 2 or 3 countries not on the metric system.MarmotHead (talk) 02:47, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
there are no Id cards in the UK either, save for driving licenses and passports. Attempts to bring them in have proved unpopular on grounds of cost and civil liberties. AMassiveGay (talk) 07:07, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Indeed. ID cards are garbage. In most cases what happens is that the card becomes a substitute for any substantive checks on ID. That's hugely exploitable. The UK issues drivers with a standard EU-style license with a photo on it, but specifically does not require them to carry it. I see a lot of foreigners can't get their heads around that. If you don't have to carry the license, how can anyone be sure you were issued one? But they're putting trust in the wrong place. In the UK the question isn't "Does this person have the requisite document?" but "Is this person licensed to drive?". The matter of establishing the identity of the driver is, correctly a key element instead of being ignored altogether in favour of a purely mechanical check. Once we're sure who the driver is, the question of whether they have a license is something a database lookup can answer much more reliably than examining some possibly fraudulent document in their possession.
The situation with voting is parallel. In the UK it's illegal to vote as someone else (without proxy paperwork) or vote more than once in the same election (since a Reform Act abolished the last privileges to do so) but the question of who you are is a matter for the police and, ultimately, a judge, not something trusted to a piece of paper or plastic. If a clerk suspects that you are breaking the law at a polling station they can call the police, and the police will decide who you are in the interim. If you have a document which claims to be proof of your ID, they might ask to see it, but they would also doubtless be convinced by other local people recognising you, or by many other forms of evidence anybody might have. Of course the US can't do that trick because Americans don't trust their police. Tialaramex (talk) 09:06, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
My understanding of the voter ID debate in the US is that it's heavily connected (or is at least perceived that way) with Republican attempts to make it more difficult for African Americans and ethnic minorities to vote, as they tend to vote Democrat. Driving licences and passports are the most common forms of photo ID, and things that people who can't afford to drive or travel (and hence a lot of PoCs) are less likely to have. The states that require voter ID are Republican-dominated, and there's a pretty strong correlation with their history as Jim Crow states. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:04, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Good post, Tialaramex. Ajkgordon (talk) 16:10, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
There's also a new catch in Texas. The law requires the name on your driver's license to match your birth certificate and voter's registration exactly. That's a problem since most women don't have their documents amended properly after changing their names. I think that's a pretty telling one. I actually had the discussion about IDs for voting yesterday and a guy I was debating with thought the problem was that those of us opposed to the laws were against having IDs in general. I informed him that it was about cost and availability. He'd never heard that argument (from RW news sources). When he tried to trick me by challenging me if I'd be ok with free IDs issued by the state to all citizens he was shocked that I was for it. I thought it was interesting. He honestly didn't understand the opposition. AyzmoCheers 16:15, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
tl;dr American here, it's because the U.S. has a loooooonnnng history of things like proof-of-residency laws and poll taxes being used (mostly in the South) to stop minorities from voting. Understandably, a lot of people get a bit touchy about these things, especially when serious examinations of the topic have found a very low incidence of voter fraud, which makes you wonder about the real motives behind such laws. -- (talk) 07:00, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
Anon 71 gets it right. As applied in the US, recent iterations of voter ID shenanigans are purported "solutions" in search of a virtually nonexistent problem. Voter fraud (of the kind that these ID requirements claim to prevent) is pretty much down in the noise, single digit kind of stuff. That's single-digit numbers of individual votes, not percentage points in a population. Not so long ago, certain jurisdictions with a history of voter discrimination were subject to automatic federal scrutiny when making any change to their ways of vetting voters. Sadly, with that provision removed from the federal voter rights act, that law is well on its way to toothlessness. Thanks a lot, SCOTUS! Alec Sanderson (talk) 14:00, 25 October 2014 (UTC)

For the continuing amusement and satisfaction of the patrons of this fine and doughty bar...[edit]

1 indictment against Kent Hovind and Paul Hansen (October 2014). Might be ol' Hovis boy might not be living up to his bragging about his release date after all.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 19:25, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

Very interesting - so what does this mean for him? Tielec01 (talk) 01:00, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
He will one day face the wrath of the Blades of the Darkmoon. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg With just a head. And a burlap sack for a body. 01:40, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
In his previous one he actually had a proper lawyer. That was a public defender, but said defender still did way better than anything Hovind has ever put forth representing himself - David Gerard (talk) 11:51, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
I wonder how many extra years over the normal amount Kent will earn himself? OOH, perhaps he'll earn a few perjury and contempt of court charges. --Revolverman (talk) 12:49, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
The PD basically said "my client is too much of a delusional nutter for mens rea to apply, therefore not criminal contempt". Of course, that was the previous charge that the feds have dropped in favour of this one.
I think the key takeaway here is that the feds are conclusively sick of Hovind's shit - David Gerard (talk) 12:58, 28 October 2014 (UTC)


My son just texted to tell me there is a goat in the student union building on his campus. Shortly after, I learned that Teresa Caputo will hold LIVE! THE EXPERIENCE not three miles from my house on Wednesday.

So does the awesomeness of the goat offset the fake psychic? Or should I feel depressed about this? (talk) 20:38, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

The goat moves in mysterious ways. AugustusCaesar (talk) 21:11, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

RobSmith on Islam[edit]

One of the indicators of the current status of the wiki's, ahem, "community" is the fact that RobSmith is happily skipping around adding stuff to Islam-related articles without any apparent scrutiny.--ZooGuard (talk) 19:03, 25 October 2014 (UTC)

Well scrutinize it asshole, and cut with the personal attacks. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:29, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
Great my irony meter just broke now you owe me a new one Rob.ClothCoat (talk) 20:32, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
The enemy of my enemy is still not my friend. Exiled Encyclopedist (talk) 17:30, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

I Don’t Support Feminism If It Means Murdering All Men[edit]

the onion. Ikanreed (talk) 14:55, 29 October 2014 (UTC)

And meanwhile in the actual real newspaper world, this notable personage had an opinion piece in Guardian about how there ought to be more tumblrs about how awful men are. Satire is dead. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 23:37, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Non-ironic Tumblrs about how men are awful are a goldmine of unintentional comedy more often than not. See: Move the Fuck Over Bro. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg It's dangerous to go alone! Take this. 01:26, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
There's a lot of ones how women are awful, it's only fair there'd be some balance. Dmytry (talk) 05:54, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

Any Korean history fans here?[edit]

Anyone here knowledgeable or willing to learn about Korean history/historiography? Someone needs to adopt the Hwandan Gogi article. It's been created by a user that is no longer active, and recently it has been subject to revisions that smell of whitewash, especially when done by a user who also has removed any doubts of the book's authenticity from the Wikipedia article too.--ZooGuard (talk) 16:47, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

I'm Korean-American, but history is not my strong point at all (Dammit Jim, I'm a Chemist, not a Historian!). I'll see what I can do to help. I'm sure at least one of my relatives have heard of this thing... Noir LeSable (talk) 20:31, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
All I know about Korean historiography is that everything you thought was Chinese (Confucius, Wushu and other Chinese martial arts, the Han characters/script, dog meat) is actually Korean. [/joke]Vajrapani (talk) 01:22, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Hi I'm new[edit]

I'm new, and I was just wondering if there are any unwritten things I should know. Greatnecro (talk) 01:41, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Well, they wouldn't be unwritten if we told you here, now would they. --Miekal 01:50, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Everything here is unwritten, which is why new editors don't stick around. Nutty Roux (talk) 04:20, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Read any good sci-fi recently?[edit]

Exiled Encyclopedist (talk) 17:30, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

The Martian by Andy Weir, about a guy who gets stranded on Mars. I thought it was nice.--Кřěĵ (ṫåɬк) 04:39, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Just got finished with the Robot series by Asimov. Think I should work on the Foundation Trilogy? Greatnecro (talk) 01:32, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
"Ancillary Justice" by Ann Leckie, a space-opera-ish tale about a ship AI reduced to a single humanoid body, is a good one. Won the Hugo. (talk) 03:25, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

Pope Francis : God isn't 'a magician with a magic wand'[edit]

Time for the Schlafly schism

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/pope-francis-declares-evolution-and-big-bang-theory-are-right-and-god-isnt-a-magician-with-a-magic-wand-9822514.html — Unsigned, by: Alain / talk / contribs 19:28, 28 October 2014‎

What's a Schlafly? Oh yeah, him. Ho hum. SophieWilderModerator 19:45, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Cue everybody immediately jumping down the Pope's throat with "God and science aren't compatible." Nullahnung (talk) 19:56, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
He seems to be saying that evolution and the Big Bang don't refute god but require him. It's pretty much the old argument from first cause. SophieWilderModerator 20:05, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Pope Francis is a godless communist. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:40, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
The Pope is a Goat.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 22:26, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
The Pope on a Rope.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 22:28, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Pope Soap on a Rope.--nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 22:46, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

But if God isn't a magician, how does the Pope explain magnets?! -- (talk) 07:56, 29 October 2014 (UTC)

Fucking magnets, how do they work!? --Revolverman (talk) 09:53, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
They harness the power of the tides. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 12:19, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Well, God takes his non-existent Magic Wand and, if he strokes it hard enough, magnetism happens.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 12:28, 29 October 2014 (UTC)

I’m making it up as I go along, says Pope - David Gerard (talk) 13:47, 29 October 2014 (UTC)

What a fraud. The only reason the boys in the Vatican Politburo selected that communist is to cover up the Vatican Bank scandal. It was brilliant, he preaches the virtues of poverty while the bank is under investigation for money laundering and screwing sex-abuse victims out of their award settlements. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 01:16, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
"The only reason the boys in the Vatican Politburo selected that communist—" Play nice, Robbie. Osaka Sun (talk) 09:52, 3 November 2014 (UTC)

At the end of the day every religion needs to accept reality or become a laughing stock. The Catholic Church is, as usual, slowly getting round to it. Francis really needs to give up on the exorcism though.--Weirdstuff (talk) 21:29, 5 November 2014 (UTC) You do know he is only reasserting what the Church's position had been for years, right?

Gone Girl[edit]

On a tangentially related note, has anyone read/watched Gone Girl and thought that the actions of the female protagonist were justified? No spoilers, please. I was having a heated debate with my friend about this and was hoping for some other perspectives.Vajrapani (talk) 01:17, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

I'm trying to think of the kind of worldview necessary to think that Amy's actions were anywhere in the same nation as "justified," and am coming up blank. Noir LeSable (talk) 16:23, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

A question about rising sea levels and groundwater[edit]

Whilst browsing the internet, I came across an article saying that a quarter of the annual rise in the sea level is accounted for by groundwater extraction. I'm curious, is this something used by global warming denialists?

Also, would that make the sea less salty?

I do hope the fine folks at RationalWiki can elucidate an answer for me.--Tanis (talk) 15:29, 3 November 2014 (UTC)

0.8 mm/yr? Even if that did make the sea less salty, it'd be by an awfully small amount. Plus, it might be offset somewhat by the salt it washes into the sea. But I'm no expert. MarmotHead (talk) 17:57, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Wouldn't ice (no/litle salt?) melting do more to lessen the salinity? --Eve (talk) 18:01, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
The oceans are not homogeneous there are layers of different temperatures and salinity. Melting ice water tends not to mix with brine and forms a separate layer. One of the predictions for melting of the Greenland ice sheet is that it will effectively switch of the current North Atlantic conveyor system which brings warm water to northwest Europe and moderates the climate thus actually making it colder. This is one of the reasons why the terminology was changed from "global warming" to "climate change". Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. Moderator 09:12, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Watts/Nye Controversy[edit]

I found out today that Anthony Watts accused Bill Nye of having experiments regarding climate change that were not repeatable. I know Bill already responded, but the page comes up as unavailable. Anybody know where else I can find it? Greatnecro (talk) 17:53, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

9/11 Conspiracy Author Phillip Marshall & His 2 Kids Found Dead in California[edit]

Might be a murder-suicide. Cue screams of "It's a cover-up!". — Unsigned, by: TiaC / talk / contribs

...even the dog had to go? --Captain Wolff (talk) 20:07, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
This is from last year. Why are you bringing it up now? SophieWilderModerator 21:00, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Because it came up under recent news for me? I don't think I'll use that aggregator in the future. TiaC (talk) 07:30, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

Poor kids. Was a murder-suicide. [9]. Hipocrite (talk) 20:10, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

Bullshit. Bush did it. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 17:32, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

"sound science"[edit]

There seems to be an effort to politicize the issue of "sound science" (Nurse Hickoks and the White House's criticism of GOP hopeful Chris Christie). Hell, (a) , "science" doesn't even know what the hell a virus is, and (b) "science's" estimates of 1.4 million people infected with Ebola by New Years Day 2015 seems to a rather emotional and hyped scare tactic at this point. We'll see how sound "sound science" is very shortly. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 22:33, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Aye. Science knows fuck all about viruses. Fucking tool. In other news, 1.4 million was clearly stated as a worst case scenario. Robledo (talk) 22:46, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Robbie here is the reason why Republicans go to great lengths to say they're not scientists. Osaka Sun (talk) 23:19, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Lookit RW's ToDo List -- "From the state of the American media, you'd think there was a pandemic on. We need to put the fear in proper perspective." Fuck. Who's responsible for the goddamn panic? the goddamn scientists in the Obama CDC and the goddamn commie-liberal media for carrying their water. So a duly elected servant of the people shows concern, the goddamn commie operatives and community organizers start spewing shit about "sound science". Fuck these assholes. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 02:44, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
You're drinking the fluoride, General Ripper. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:16, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Nice use of racist dog whistle, Rob. A alabamanian recognizes those on sight, for reasons I don't have to clarify. --Madman (talk) 03:44, 5 November 2014 (UTC)The Madman
Indeed, why used properly analysed facts when you've got bigotry and prejudice on your side. Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 16:50, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Clarify it for me then. I want to jump on the bandwagon and abuse Rob a bit before lunch. Nutty Roux (talk) 17:31, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
I too would like some clarification. Of all the things that can and are leveled at rob, I fail to see the racism in these posts. AMassiveGay (talk) 17:41, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Small changes in growth rates lead to larger error bars for exponential growth, and the 1.4 million cases estimate is for "Extrapolating trends to January 20, 2015, without additional interventions or changes in community behavior (e.g., notable reductions in unsafe burial practices)" [10]. The very next paragraph talks about scenarios in which Ebola cases are nearly eliminated by January. I mean, like, think a little. There's nothing wrong with the science. Sterile (talk) 17:44, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Can I make it clear that the bigotry I was talking about was not racist but the "commie" snarls as in goddamn commie-liberal media and the goddamn commie operatives. It would appear that using science is a communist trait. Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 17:51, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Why in the hell does anyone want to criticize science and use scare quotes around the word? Do people really want to return to the age and standard of living centuries ago before the scientific method was worked out?--BMcP - Just an astronomy guy 19:30, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes indeed, the Salafis. Maybe their views should be ridiculed and dismissed outright, huh? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 18:03, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, people do. In particular bible-bashing nutjobs such as Rob. Time to dust off RationalWiki:Robrail, I think. SophieWilderModerator 20:05, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

Update: Sound science revises Ebola estimates. Sounds like sound science's hype and scare tactics was just a scam to suck the public tit out of $6 billion -- more than cancer research. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 17:56, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

Race trolling on RW[edit]

I have a compiled list of IPs and socks that our favorite race troll (Mikemikev) has been using for some years to troll our articles on race and racism with. Would anybody in the community mind if I went to town on them with the edit filter or by other means (blocking, vandal-binning) so we can finally get rid of that pest? If there are strong, sincere objections, I will not do it. But I would, at least, like some community input on this. Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 12:27, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

Support. FᴜᴢᴢʏCᴀᴛPᴏᴛᴀᴛᴏ, Esϙᴜɪʀᴇ (talk/stalk) 12:32, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, please! Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 14:55, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
How do we know if it was all one person (maybe there's two, both being confused by us into this Mikemikev identity)? Does it matter whether it was one person or two as long as we deal with both? How comprehensive and accurate is this list that was compiled? Do we even know if these socks and IPs are reused at all (because if they aren't that would defeat the purpose of this list)? If they aren't reused, would the edit filter even accomplish anything, seeing how the particular IP and sock keeps changing, making the rest of this list obsolete with every new iteration? So many questions. Nullahnung (talk) 12:46, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
Just asking questions, man. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:07, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
I knew someone was going to say that. :P Nullahnung (talk) 13:20, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
Seriously, though, to rephrase it in a form that does not involve question marks, I said essentially two things: 1.) It shouldn't matter if it really was one Mikemikev as long as we can deal with everyone who is race trolling us. 2.) I don't see this list as accomplishing anything if the pattern is new IPs coming to troll us every time. Nullahnung (talk) 13:31, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

Oh, and just for the fun of it, let me put on my tinfoil hat and ask: What if Mikemikev has been creating socks on RW to argue and operate against him/her/themself in an attempt to gain attention? We've seen a few accounts here and there whose sole purpose seems to be to focus down and destroy anything posted by the race IPs. Nullahnung (talk) 12:50, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

What if Mikemikev has infiltrated the RMF board of trustees? What if he has made some deal with RNS and this is all a ploy to block sincere editors and invite more race trolls into the fold? What if the RMF has signed a secret deal with Metapedia & Stormfront? ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:07, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
What if Mikemikev is actually an extreterrestrial sent to experiment on wikis by humans? Nullahnung (talk) 13:24, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
What if the people arguing most vociferously against him are the real racists? Ikanreed (talk) 14:19, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
It is actually about ethics in wiki-editing. Nullahnung (talk) 14:36, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
What if Reckless Noise Symphony is Mikemikev? |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg It's dangerous to go alone! Take this. 15:04, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
: All the IPs trace to South Korea, Seoul, even to the same ISP (some "cooperation"). Just type the IP on google and it shows where it is, I did not add one to that list which is not from Seoul. That is what I did to compile them. They're all him. Lots of them also turn up as blocked IPs on his Wikipedia sockpuppet archive [11] [12]. What however is problematic is finding all his user-accounts on this site. Mike has been impersonating other people, or posting under names like "Kevin", "Frank" etc to get his edits through. If you lock the pages, he will impersonate an anti-racist even to make edits. That's how dishonest this person is, e.g. view here: [13]. He caused the Wikipedia- race (human classification) talk to be locked a few days ago for vandalism. So under a sock he returned posing as someone against racism: " Also I suspect that editor is a racist. See you on the wiki. -- User talk:" Zoobies (talk) 14:40, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

But we don't want to be conservapedia and block everyone in a country from editting rationalwiki to deal with a couple trolls. Is the an available technical measure that would maybe stop non-autoconfirmed users from certain IP ranges from editting pages on a specific list(or maybe auto-brake them)? Ikanreed (talk) 15:31, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

The best thing you can do is just lock the race pages and race talk-pages - like they did at Wikipedia a few days ago to stop Mikemikev vandalizing (see here. Only confirmed editors, or editors with a number of constructive edits can then comment. However like I said, Mikemikev then impersonates other people to get around this, he makes 10-20 edits impersonating an anti-racist, and then goes back once he has access to vandalizing the pages. And yes, the above is also true - he creates multiple accounts to speak to himself. He's very unhinged. Metapedia is also mentioned a lot on this site, but he was banned from there and they want nothing to do with him: "MikeV is nothing more than a drunken trouble causer. There is a reason why he get's banned from everywhere" [14]. Basically everyone recognizes him as a pest, even his fellow white supremacists. Zoobies (talk) 18:14, 6 November 2014 (UTC)
User:Windir mentioned the "Mikemikev creates multiple accounts to speak to himself" thing before, yes. Nullahnung (talk) 18:51, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

Here's the techinical aspects of what this would look like: I could create a a filter that would have known socks blacklisted. This would not necessarily prevent them from editing. However, I could program it so that if said sock IPs start exhibiting certain patterns of behavior, they would be blocked on site before they could even save their edits. As is typical, I would also monitor the edit filter to prevent against false positives and, should a false positive occur, I will try to program it out. Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 19:12, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

So, now that there's some clarity on what I want to do and how it'll work, are there any serious objections to me creating this filter? I'd like to know, because I would like to start writing it this weekend if possible. Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 19:26, 7 November 2014 (UTC)
Please go ahead. Tell me if you want help monitoring it for issues. Ikanreed (talk) 19:29, 7 November 2014 (UTC)
No serious objections, no. I'm still a little concerned that it won't accomplish anything, but I guess we won't know until we try. Nullahnung (talk) 19:45, 7 November 2014 (UTC)

Windir is mine. I posted I left it because it was vandalized by Mikemikev on the talk page. This all started over at Metapedia last year when I debated Mikemikev in November. In response he then set up fake accounts of me across the internet, and joined forums to doxx my personal info and post lies about me on various anthro-forums. He did something similar for Mathesci who he debated the year before. He created a libelous Encylopedia Dramatica entry on this same person (which was deleted) and then posted his photo and location at Stormfront, as well as impersonating him on a forum. Since last November I've had to deal with all his socking, where he posts junk on accounts and then posts they are mine (when they are him). He's accused me of being at least 3 of his socks on this site. Bizarrely he then denies being mentally ill. Zoobies (talk) 21:42, 7 November 2014 (UTC)

Oh, so that's where the follow-him-around-and-mock-him-with-inexplicable-animosity thing comes from. Ikanreed (talk) 21:47, 7 November 2014 (UTC)
More lies from Mikemikev whose edit was reverted on another South Korean sock IP. Here is one of his socks he claims is mine: Kevin, there is also a "Jon" on one of the race-realism talks. He creates sockpuppets and impersonates other people and then accuses other people of owning them. Just IP check "Kevin", or the others and it will come back South Korea. The "anti-racist" claim is funny since he's currently impersonating an anti-racist over at Wikipedia [15]. What a nutcase. Zoobies (talk) 13:44, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

Mike where am I meant to have "impersonated" you? You've been socking on this site since 2011 on the "Race Realism" and "Race" entries. Here's only a partial list of your socks: [16], that lists 45 of your sock (South Korean) IP's, and 6 of your sock-users (Mikemikev, Mikemikev1, Kevin, FrankDickman, Sam_Rainbow, PhilPhilpot). On other page entries like "Holocaust denial" and "Racism" which you have been vandalizing - you have loads more socks which I never even added to that list, e.g. DaveJefferson is another of yours that was reverted on "Racism". You started accusing me of owning several of your sockpuppets like "Kevin", which as you know is a lie. I'm not sure why you keep calling me a compulsive liar when the evidence shows you are. You've been abusing this site and creating hundreds of socks for years, and then try and blame some of your accounts onto innocent people. Whether you do this to troll, or because you are mentally ill I don't really care, but you should just stop posting on this site. Zoobies (talk) 14:54, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

Totally not suspicious[edit]

Because of course there's no way a paranormal investigator would stab himself unless the ghosts made him do it. (talk) 21:07, 7 November 2014 (UTC)

Midterms 2014 incoming[edit]

Unless the polls are mistaken, GOP will probably win the Senate (and thus Congress) by 1-3 seats. Cue dozens of conservatives begging their leadership not to fuck shit up again, and... Osaka Sun (talk) 00:39, 3 November 2014 (UTC)

Just think that if we actually had a genuinely representative democracy here in the US, the republican party would already be dead. But yay for giving empty, conservative states as many senators as places where people actually live, and yay for political redistricting. And while we're at it, yay for winner take all elections. Ikanreed (talk) 14:30, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
For some context. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:08, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Redistricting isn't necessarily gerrymandering. It can be a wise idea to keep homogenous demographics in the same district, that their voice doesn't get drowned out. That is a core idea behind representation. It's not just about the population being represented, but the people. That way, being a part of a minority group doesn't mean you get drowned out. I am by no means saying that the current US representative system does or does not do this.--Tanis (talk) 15:37, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
I was talking about the US. My state had a majority(51%) of citizens vote for democrats for house in the 2012 election. 9 out of 13 seats went to republicans, and another was designed to(and almost did). Our redistricting process is anti-democracy. End of story. Ikanreed (talk) 16:57, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, thanks to Art Pope, you got screwed! District 12's shape is a perfect example of that. I'd love it if the Senate could be re-districted to cross state boundaries. It's surprising that there's been a Democratic majority there for as long as it's gone on. MarmotHead (talk) 17:10, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Everything about the electoral system kinda sucks. I saw an interesting plan for 50 states with equal population, but I kinda doubt that that will ever happen. I don't understand why someone hasn't tried to de-gerrymander everything, but there it is. They'd rather scream about obamacare. (Agrajag (talk) 17:23, 3 November 2014 (UTC))
Well... gerrymandering is always beneficial to those currently in power, so (in)conveniently no one with actual power ever has a motivation to de-gerrymader anything. The result is the awful system we know and love today. (talk) 18:29, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Have the Democrats done much gerrymandering? Just out of curiosity. (Agrajag (talk) 18:49, 3 November 2014 (UTC))
Of course it has. First use was by the democratic-republican party(the originator of the modern democratic party) It should be considered a non-partisan issue, but it never is. Ikanreed (talk) 19:50, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
The US is currently in a relatively rare period of very tribal politics. The vast majority of the population are now members of either the red or blue tribe, and members of the other tribe are their sworn enemies. Nothing useful gets done in that environment. The idea that politicians can't do anything unless it directly benefits their tribe feels right under today's environment.
But under ordinary circumstances the tribe is not the foremost concern, good public policy dominates temporary partisan advantage. In that environment it's possible to pass legislation just because most members of the legislature think it's a good idea. Policy changes that will change the face of the legislature itself (e.g. rules for adding or removing seats, enfranchising or disenfranchising groups of people, or redrawing boundaries) are much more possible under those circumstances. I guess I'm saying, under normal circumstances a US Congress can fix this sort of thing.
A less tribal politics would also make it possible to fix this in the usual way (meaning: how it's done in other countries) by having a neutral body draw the boundaries. Today's incredibly tribal US has no neutral bodies - school boards, doctors, prosecutors, librarians, even your court of final appeal is seen by the general public as a partisan body. That isn't normal.
It's never easy of course. England's Reform Acts (particularly the first two) fixed abuses far more egregious than today's Gerrymandering in the US, with the relative size of the electorate for a seat varying by many orders of magnitude and initially only a tiny fraction of the population eligible to vote at all. The Acts passed after years of wrangling because the right combination of interests lined up, and because compromises were made e.g. the Great Reform Act enfranchises a class of person ("tenants-at-will paying rent of fifty pounds") who would be considered moderately wealthy by today's standards but owed their livelihood very directly to powerful landowners. These landowners, not surprisingly, enjoyed considerable influence over who the new voters picked, with the effect that even as the notional value of their individual vote declined their effective power over government remained steady, at least at first Tialaramex (talk) 02:17, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Heh. I can see the headlines in 20 years - "Will gridlock in Washington finally be resolved by the Republican capture of Mrs. Robinson's 3rd grade class in Wagram, Ohio?" "Nate Silver's new statistics show that a Democratic takeover of the Taco Bell in Arbor, MA is imminent." "Spending by powerful IKEA lobby helps defeat Democratic challenger for chair of the Model UN of Freetown, Wisconsin."
In seriousness, it should be noted that the gridlock is mostly the fault of the Republicans. Remember that? The Rep.s have succeeded in creating gridlock and apathy. It's now fashionable to blame both parties for a Republican mess ("a curse on both your houses"), and, since the Democrats are seen as being in power, the Rep.s make a net gain. Dialogue is degenerating. Debates are about humiliating your opponent, not convincing the audience. The Supreme Court sanctions the buying of elections. It sucks, really, but ehy, maybe its always been like this.(Agrajag (talk) 17:44, 4 November 2014 (UTC))
All i want is for attack ads to stop existing. I know 20 reasons why several candidates in my state and the one next to mine suck, and no reasons as to why i should have voted for the options i had available this morning at the polling place.--Miekal 17:48, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
They are annoying. It's especially bad when you get ads from another state. There's a series of them from Alaska where literally no issues are discussed. Instead, the candidates mock each other's snowmobile skills. Or the ones where people print a copy of Obamacare and shoot it. (Agrajag (talk) 18:11, 4 November 2014 (UTC))
The biggest issue in Congress is how much the two-party system discourages cooperation between the parties. The climate is more profitable to those who simply seek to gain total control for themselves rather than negotiate with their opponents. Ultimately, I think a major overhaul to the Constitution is necessary to try and convert the Legislative Branch into something that resembles a parliament. I've noticed that in European legislatures the largest party may only control 30-40% of the seats, meaning that if they are to exercise their power effectively they must form coalitions with other parties. The resulting coalition often has a super-majority and thus more work is done, while preventing the legislature from becoming a one-party system. The issue of gerrymandering would best be solved (I think) by placing control of legislative districting exclusively under the Census Bureau, which would use data from the censuses to ensure that the demographics of each district are as homogenous as possible, making it more likely that citizens are represented by the politician who actually reflects their opinions. States could district their own legislatures how they wanted, but federal districts would be under federal control. --Captain Wolff (talk) 20:33, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
I always laugh at this description of Elections Canada: "we have a separate group of bureaucrats to promote the gerrymandering. Better yet, you can't even elect these guys!" Thank god we do, it's a powerful moderating force. Osaka Sun (talk) 20:44, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
That would be a good idea (unless the Census bureau people are Presidential/Congressional appointees, in which case they'd be fighting over that). And a parliamentary system would be wonderful, but conservatives/blue dogs would denounce it as too European and most everyone would balk at editing the Constitution. (Agrajag (talk) 20:53, 4 November 2014 (UTC))
Right, new idea then (and I feel like an absolute bastard for coming up with this) that involves astroturfing. First ensure that both congress and the presidency are Republican. Find a few thousand teabaggers and whip them up into a frenzy. Then have them descend on Washington and hold anyone who leans even slightly to the left hostage. Ensure that authorities botch the response and turn the entire situation into a clusterfuck. The short-term loss of leftist politicians will be more than made up for by conservatives being blamed for all of it and run out of the country. In the wake of the disaster, voters will likely put in place liberals for a replacement government as a knee-jerk reaction to Republicans allegedly fucking up. Once the government is purged of the idiots, start steering it towards Europe. --Captain Wolff (talk) 21:09, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
I'll admit, shit like what I just declared is kinda the reason conspiracy theorists exist. --Captain Wolff (talk) 21:11, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Alright! Who wants to go Deep Cover Liberal? (Agrajag (talk) 22:01, 4 November 2014 (UTC))
@Cap'n: a major overhaul to the Constitution is necessary; only the States can do this. in European legislatures the largest party may only control 30-40%; it is the Electoral College that MANDATES a majority, hence the U.S. has a two-party system. they must form coalitions with other parties; yes indeed. Virtually all parliamentary forms create Unity Governments, which in the U.S is only a token Cabinet appointment. The U.S. is winner-take-all in the separate Executive and Legislative. The resulting coalition often has a super-majority and thus more work is done; this is a positive thing. While the British Liberal Party will never be a majority party - it will always be in any governing coalition. It plays "king-maker". control of districting under the Census Bureau...federal districts under federal control... Ha Ha. This will never happen. And could not happen. Really. Think about it. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 22:22, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
There hasn't been a British Liberal Party for many years. The Liberal Democrats, under Clegg, are largely a spent force. Coalitions are a fairly rare outcome in British politics, because like the US we have FPTP elections and this one amounted merely to Clegg handing over all control to Cameron's Tories. Tialaramex (talk) 23:11, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
So when's the last time any party won ("won" is different from "controlled") 326 seats in Commons? Isn't there almost always a coalition or unity government? And the Liberals, like the Free Democrats in Germany, almost always selecting the winner, either left or right, and they always get to participate in governing, though never as a majority? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 03:03, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Isn't there almost always a coalition or unity government? no--Miekal 03:28, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Rob, no. A coalition government in the UK is extremely rare. The current coalition government is the first since WWII. It's not the parliamentary system that is prone to coalitions - it's proportional representation, which many European states have. The British system is First Past The Post. Ajkgordon (talk) 14:52, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
So how does the Speaker get elected? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is.
In the Westminster parliamentary system, the Speaker is generally elected by a vote of sitting MPs, but he/she is non-partisan, renounces membership in his or her party upon taking office, and generally cannot vote except in the case of a tie. - Grant (talk) 04:13, 7 November 2014 (UTC)
The speaker is elected by elimination rounds by MPs until only two candidates are left and then the one with the highest number of votes wins. But I'm not sure why you think this is particularly significant. The speaker is a presiding officer and has no political power in terms of government policy, law making and so on. What point are you trying to make, Rob? Ajkgordon (talk) 17:47, 7 November 2014 (UTC)
It explains much and is very helpful. So the Speakership can be held by the same person despite a change in ruling party, correct? In the US, the House Speaker is entirely a partisan political position (as well as a Constitutional Office in succession). Even the President Pro Tempore of the Senate is dependant on party affiliation. Our founders didn't envision the way factionalism and parties developed in the US. This aspect of the British system is one some, if not many, Americans envy. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 17:42, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, Speakers can remain the same through successive governments, even with a change in the ruling party. In Canada, for example, Peter Milliken was Speaker of the House of Commons from 2001 to 2011, during which time both the Liberal and Conservative parties held government at some point. It's worth noting that although some Westminster nations (Canada being one of them) don't require the Speaker to renounce his/her party membership once elected, the Speaker still must be non-partisan, and still cannot vote unless there is a tie in the House. While there are some things that are absolutely garbage about Parliaments in Canada and the UK (FPTP being one of them), the non-partisan Speaker role is certainly not one of them. - Grant (talk) 17:57, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── It could be imagined then the Westminster system of Speakership does not wield anywhere near the power a US Speaker has, to make Committee appointments, re-write the House Rules, scheduling the agenda and floor votes etc., and is moreless limited to floor action and ensuring all parties are allotted fairness and their time to debate under the rules. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 18:18, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

In this case I'm not going to bother checking whether this is true for other Commonwealth nations, but in Canada that is certainly true. Much of the Westminster system relies on tradition and precedent, and precedent in Canada is that only Parliament itself has the power to rewrite the rules, schedule agendas and votes, and so on. The Speaker manages Question Period, ensures decorum, and liaises with the Senate and the Crown when necessary. It is still considered quite the prestigious position to hold, but unlike in the U.S. House of Representatives, it's not a position that affords any kind of political power. - Grant (talk) 18:32, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
The benefits: having a non=partisan speaker who transcends party probably keeps interaction and debate less rancorous. In the US, when a different party takes control, it writes its own rules (as now Mitch McConnell will shit-can Harry Reid's anti-filibuster rule). When Pelosi was Speaker, she appointed a Rules Committee Chairperson who re-wrote the rules to pass Obamacare under budget reconciliation authority. While it's hard to imagine the Westminster system doesn't allow for the governing party to make revisions (how did Tony Blair do away with hereditary peerage in the House of Lords?) in its rules, the US system has always been (in my lifetime) ripe for ignoring if not abusing the rights of the minority party. nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 18:51, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
Generally speaking, Parliaments in Canada have been hesitant to touch most Parliamentary rules other than those that are just a relic of a much older time. e.g. Canada has never had hereditary peerage and long ago barred Canadian citizens from receiving British peerage, but if that weren't the case I imagine there would be no broad opposition to the reforms that Blair pushed through in the UK. Canada is in some ways unique because we do have a written Constitution that outlines some limitations on the traditional Parliamentary supremacy seen in other Westminster nations, but even outside of what the Constitution already covers, fundamentally altering the structure or rules of Parliament is a dangerous game. Parliament can't unilaterally change how members are elected, and historically there tends to be a huge backlash against any party that tries to push through bills to serve its own interests.
That said, this is also a problem that doesn't come up as much in Canadian politics, as it's traditional that MPs vote along party lines. In that way, majority governments have little opposition when submitting bills for consideration. Minority governments are a different story, as the ruling party has to earn the support of at least one of the other parties in Parliament in order to be successful. Usually this means that as long as the ruling party has public support, the Opposition will not try to oppose any bills that could result in loss of supply on failure. Minority governments create a very interesting dynamic, but because most parties generally don't want to rush into elections (loss of supply causes an immediate dissolution of government, usually followed by an election), minority governments are usually still functional. - Grant (talk) 19:12, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
the ruling party has to earn the support of at least one of the other parties in Parliament in order to be successful; this is what I was alluding to in the case of the German Free Democrats and British Libs (also common in Isreali politics). I guess having a cabinet minister is what qualifies as a coalition government, not just the ability to force a no confidence vote. In the American system, no one can force a no-confidence vote in the Speakership, let alone the Executive, so it takes other forms. The American system is totally inept in dealing with a crisis, or getting rid of an Executive no one has confidence in anymore (witness Johnson & Vietnam, Nixon & Watergate, Carter & the Hostage Crisis, Reagan & Iran-Contra, Clinton & impeachment, GW Bush & unpopular wars/economic collapse, and the current no-confidence vote of the public). nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 20:55, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
In principle, the same problem exists in the Canadian system due to the FPTP nature of voting. In practice, parties can easily attain majorities with less than 50% of the popular vote, and there is effectively no method to remove a party in government until the next election. While a Prime Minister's cabinet can, in theory, vote against the party's budget and thus trigger a loss of supply, this doesn't happen in reality. There are other theoretical methods to remove a sitting Prime Minister, there are none that are practical. On the other hand, political gridlock is certainly far more prevalent south of the border than it is here, so in a crisis situation, the government rarely finds itself unable to act. - Grant (talk) 23:58, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
C'mon now, in the British system the Queen can ask for the Prime Minister's resignation; who can do that in Canada? nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 01:13, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
The Queen?--Miekal 01:18, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
The Queen can shit-can the Aussie Prime Minister, but only through a buffer. "The family has a lot of buffers". nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 01:55, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, the Queen or the Governor General can sack the Prime Minister. The Queen wouldn't do so, however, as it would likely end Canada's ties to the monarchy. As for the Governor General, it was tried once, and the Queen promptly shit-canned him. All in all, precedent holds that the Queen doesn't interfere in Canada's affairs, and any deviation from that is very unlikely. - Grant (talk) 04:45, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
I suppose Her Maj could in theory ask for the British PM's resignation; but it would cause a humungous constitutional crisis, and I'm sure she would never do it. The Windsors have considerable skill in hanging in there. They've only produced one really bad lot in the last two hundred years (the Nazi-sympathising Edward VIII), and he was given the bum's rush. British PMs are more likely to be stabbed in the back by their own colleagues (like Thatcher, YAY! I was stopped in the street twice by total strangers asking if I'd heard the news). ProblemChimp (talk) 17:20, 10 November 2014 (UTC)

In summary[edit]

Not a surprise, but Kansas, Florida and Maine voters are particularly interesting + we've got a few states where the GOP won governorships while losing Senate races at the same time. "Republicans may look back at the 2014 midterms as a last hurrah." Osaka Sun (talk) 06:42, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

I'm pretty happy my house district is sending a democrat, not so happy that this woman got elected in iowa though. --Miekal 15:12, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
I'm ticked off that the Independents didn't get a shot.
There are no Independents in America; "Independents" is a term polsters use for "Ignorance" or "Apolitical". nobsIt all depends what ISIS is. 01:45, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
I mean third party members.