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Florida Man, look out-- someone may be after your throne.[edit]

Unless battle rodents on hard drugs are frequent in Miami. Kencolt (talk) 20:24, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

I must admit having an army of drug crazed battle rodents at your command would be fucking awesome. Oxyaena Harass 15:40, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
No, we have these huge cockroaches known as "palmetto bugs" addicted to hard drugs. We also have hard drugs that is "placed by The Gideons (well, hidden in the bibles placed by The Gideons anyway, fuck knows why they would pick that of all places to hide it in). (talk) 02:20, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

The Ethics of Reparations for Slavery[edit]

Reparations have been in the news, as some POTUS candidates are talking about it. One candidate, Marianne Williamson, is talking about up to $500B in reparations for descendants of slaves. Assuming the roughly 40 million black americans are all descendants of slaves, this would equate to a $12,000 pay check (I don't know if that would be a yearly recurring payment or not). I think the ethics of slavery reparations is interesting, because usually reparations are given by a guilty party towards a victim. Having a federal program pay for it with taxes assumes that everyone living in the US today was guilty of slavery (taxes aren't divided by ethnicity, after all). I would think a more sensible system would be to only tax descendants of slave owners. Although there you get into another can of worms, because it is essentially punishing people for "the sins of the father". I am undecided myself (I hold the position that, were any actual slave owners alive today, that they should be forced to pay for reparations. Of course, no slave owners (with the exception of modern slaves, but that isn't what is being discussed) are alive today, so this is neither here nor there). What are everyone's thoughts over reparations? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 20:27, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

I support reparations, but not specifically cutting a check. Creating special funds for black Americans to increase access to higher education, home ownership and small business loans would do more to help close the wealth gap in the long term than giving $12k. Though I think not having to pay taxes for a decade or two would also be cool. RipCityLiberal (talk) 21:27, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
This is a potentially thorny issue because a non-trivial number of descendants of slaves also descend from slaveholders and vice versa. I am not saying some form of reparations is impractical, but it needs a fair deal of thought. CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 21:36, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
Reparations when: (1) It's impossible to quantify the damage (2) It's impossible to establish who (if anybody) should pay for it (3) It's impossible to establish who should be payed for it. Thinker(unlicensed) 22:05, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
Black people built this country for free for hundreds of years. Helping their ancestors get 0% interest loans and an education seems a pretty fair deal. -RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:09, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
"Black people built this country for free for hundreds of years. Helping their ancestors"
First, black people were not the only who were exploited during US history. What about all the other non-black people who were exploited? How much for each one? Second, how do you establish their ancestors? Thinker(unlicensed) 22:24, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
Motherfucker are you really out here trying to compare Native American Genocide and Chattel Slavery? We absofuckinglutely need to pay for that bullshit. Native Americans and black people at a minimum need to have all the access to education at no cost. And it isn't hard to look at the historical record and identify ancestors. Slave owners kept meticulous notes. Also you're not an American and you don't live here. So don't try to step to me with your bullshit equivocation. BLACK PEOPLE BUILT THIS FUCKING COUNTRYRipCityLiberal (talk) 23:48, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
I have to agree with the clap back here. It's a pretty simple question for me, on the basis of Thinker's what about the people who were exploited (sorry, my point, people who weren't exploited by legacy) question. If we want to run it back to the end of slavery, 1865, and then count the generations (generally about 30 years), we can subtract 1865 from 2019 and count 154 years, which is about 5 generations. So, since the abolition of slavery, there's been about 5 recognized generations, and the end of slavery didn't promise anything but the end of human chattel trafficking. So, multiple cultures and ethnic backgrounds could be part of this, but let's be honest, by 1865 slaves were black people. And if I am honest, things got better from here, but not by a margin or at a speed I would want to brag about.
The disenfranchisement of specifically black people didn't get legally outlawed until the 1960s. That's, what, 2 generations ago? So let's say one cultural group had 5 generations to grow and establish themselves after the outlawing of slavery at the expense of the other. Let's say the other had 3 generations to be stymied, and then had 2 generations to catch up as if those past 5 generations were on equal grounds. (Which is me being generous to the possibilities, and that's nothing to say about the First Nations communities, who I have supported in land ownership rights first and foremost.) It's not applicable in every case, and it's tough to parse out, but the basic question is, was your great, great grandfather allowed to own property, or were they literally property? For late millennials and any Gen Z's, probably add a great to that, but it's really not that long ago. I think opportunities for schooling and breaks for businesses/housing in segregated communities should be a default. Yes, these communities have been red-lined. If you don't want to give them a check, invite them into your public works, and recognize that red-lining is the reason they can't afford to be part of the tax break get-up in the first place. It's only as complicated as the people who draw the lines want to make it. Who got up during the "No Child Left Behind" act, that focused funds on high testing schools and pulled funds from low testing schools? Did America flourish because of it? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 02:14, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
"Motherfucker are you really out here trying to compare Native American Genocide and Chattel Slavery?"
@RipCityLiberal Nope, never said that. Straw man fallacy.
"We absofuckinglutely need to pay for that bullshit. Native Americans and black people at a minimum need to have all the access to education at no cost."
I made some very precise objections. You avoided it completely.
"Also you're not an American and you don't live here. So don't try to step to me with your bullshit equivocation."
I'm not American, but at least I know that the main US railroads where built by Chinese, which also provided a non-black category of people who were exploited along US history.
Anyway, make an argument. How would you:
(1) Quantify the damage of slavery;
(2) Establish who (if anybody) should pay for it;
(3) Establish who should be compensated for it;
(4) Establish how they should be compensated? Thinker(unlicensed) 08:10, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
Funny that the Native American genocide is mentioned. Slavery was quite widespread in the native tribes, and didn't completely end until the 1890's IIRC. At least legally, anyway. I wonder how you would provide compensation for that.
As someone whose ancestors fought for the Union and never owned slaves, and only passes for white, I'm only supporting reparations if Someone Else pays for it. But anyway, let's talk serious for a second. While the South did the literal enslaving of people, the South wasn't the primary beneficiary of slavery. Oh sure, they got rich off cotton, but that was nothing in comparison to the wealth made by the people buying the cotton. Between cotton and rubber, the industrial revolution would not have begun in Britain without slavery/exploitation/conquest/etc. It was Britain who benefited more than the US from slavery. So if as the descendants of the largest beneficiary of slavery, if the British public wants to pay reparations... CoryUsar (talk) 08:51, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
@Thinker 1) I don't think that quantifying the damage is impossible. We could take the number of black americans who were bought as slaves from Africa (350,000 slaves were brought to the 13 colonies). Through natural population increase there were 3.9 million slaves by 1860. Slave import was banned in 1808. Assuming the population was 350,000 in 1808 (which isn't accurate, it would have been more, but numbers are hard to find), 3.9 million in 1860, and that the population growth was linear, we can calculate the number of slaves every year. Assuming slaves worked 12 hours a day (slaves worked on average between 10 and 16 hours a day), 6 days a week every week (a nice slave owner let slaves take the sabbath off), that is roughly 3740 hours a work year. We need to adjust for non-working children (slave children began working around age 6). The average life span of a slave was 36 years, so a slave worked 30/36 or 5/6th or 83.3% of their life. Multiplying 3740 by 0.833 we get 3115 hours a year on average. Multiplying by the current minimum wage (7.25 $/hr) we get 22583.75 $/yr payment per slave. Multiplying that by the population of the slaves each year over that time period, we get 2.54 trillion in lost wages if they were paid a modern minimum wage (5 trillion if they were paid a living wage of 15 $/hr). Now there wasn't technically a minimum wage back in those days, but we could also take the daily wage of a paid cotton worker in 1860 as a closer estimate. The average daily wage of a cotton worker was $0.91 (warning: pdf download link) for a 10 hour workday. Converting this into an hourly wage of 0.091 $/hr, then multiplying again by 3115 hours a year, we get 283.47 $/yr. Adjusting for inflation (x30.85) this comes out to 8745.05 $/yr. This is still a total of 985 billion in lost wages at a minimum (I made a lot of population reducing assumptions such as assuming the population in 1808 was just the imported slave population). This is ignoring all injustices besides lack of pay by the way (and only counting an estimate for lost pay between 1808 and 1860 at that), but it is a start.
2) In my opinion, the society that benefited from it (the USA) should pay for it. So basically a federal tax is the only feasible solution I'm aware of.
3) For a start, anyone descended directly from a slave. Could maybe throw in a requirement to be >50% descended from african heritage.
4) As RipCityLiberal suggested, it could be reduced school tuition or lowered taxes. Could also just be a lump paycheck.
Edit: This still does not answer the core ethical question, however. Should descendants be compensated for crimes against their ancestors? If you compensate this crime (slavery), why not others (chinese railway workers, a child whose great-grandfather's house was destroyed by arson, japanese internment camps, etc.)? Does a crime end when the perpetrator and victim are both dead? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 12:23, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
There have been precursors such as the Indian Claims CommissionWikipedia in the US which assessed some of the wrongs the US had done to Native Americans and awarded compensation, and the Treaty of Waitangi Act 1975Wikipedia/Waitangi TribunalWikipedia in New Zealand. In Australia native tribes have won similar law cases.[1] But in such cases the money generally went to tribes or similar representative bodies not to individuals (the tribal bodies then had to decide who was a member). These cases have mostly focused on specific claims, such as theft of land, but could still act as a model for action to claim compensation from the US government. --Annanoon (talk) 12:45, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
African-Americans lack treaty rights with the US government as Native Americans do tho, so while presenting a precedent, it could also be a significant hurdle. Of course the US government awarded victims of the Japanese-American interment camps compensation, which I would see as a better precedent than the Indian Claims Commission. Oxyaena Harass 14:09, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

(Reset)@MirrorIrorriM My nigga handling the math, thank you sir.@OxyaenaBrings up another critical point that Native Americans have had their sovereignty recognized multiple times in history, while black Americans first recognition is Brown v Board. Also still, UT continues to not recognize institutional and systemic racism which is spot on for a white supremacist. RipCityLiberal (talk) 15:39, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────:@MirrorIrorriM Thanks for answering my questions. It's amazing how a conversation get possible when people do actually ask and answer, instead of making straw men...

"1) I don't think that quantifying the damage is impossible. We could take the number of black americans..."
What you have done is a nice exercise in trying to quantify the damage, but anytime a number appears in your reasoning, there will be surely disagreement (is the figure correct? Is it right to use today minimum wage? Is it right to adjust by inflation in this way? ...); and, by your own admission, your estimate doesn't take into account all the collateral damage of slavery. So, yes, if we all agree on those figures, in how the adjustment is done, and that nothing is missing, then the damage if entirely quantificable. Except the difficult of quantify it is in such agreement.
"2) In my opinion, the society that benefited from it (the USA) should pay for it. So basically a federal tax is the only feasible solution I'm aware of."
So today black americans should pay for it? The guy whose ancestors fought to end slavery in US should pay for it? If I move to USA (I'm European), then I should pay for it? (Despite none of my ancestors benefited from slavery.) Calling this proposal an oversimplification is an oversimplification.
"3) For a start, anyone descended directly from a slave. Could maybe throw in a requirement to be >50% descended from african heritage."
Someone who descended from a slave but also from many non-african ancestors should not get it? Is it about slavery or about Africa?
"4) As RipCityLiberal suggested, it could be reduced school tuition or lowered taxes. Could also just be a lump paycheck."
The reduced school tuition or lowered taxes thing makes no sense. If somebody kidnaps and enslaves you, no sane person would think that the right compensation is that the kidnapper should pay school tuition of the victim (unless is the victim to ask that), or give them a discount. So any compensation must be monetary, which goes back to point 1. Thinker(unlicensed) 16:30, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
@Thinker Continuing the question and answer in order...
1) An exact number will never be arrived at. Only in physics is such a thing even possible in practice. But while an exact number for the damage is impossible, a quantifiable minimum is possible. Example: It is nearly impossible to find the actual number of casualties from the Hiroshima bomb, but it is possible to find a minimum and a maximum. And yes, every number I bring up is contestable, which is perfectly fine! Keep going down that line and we will eventually arrive at a minimum (always assume minimum damage) and maximum (always assume maximum damage along the way). This is how quantifying any uncertain number is done, and it can be done here as well. People can disagreeing with your quantification is no reason not to do it. Otherwise policy would never be set on anything. Being uncertain in what the actual cost of the damage is is not a reason to not pay for the minimum projected damages.
2) Yes black americans would be paying for it (although they would presumably be benefiting more than they are paying for it), the simplification of logistics is what is important here. It is essentially giving back-pay for work that was done in the establishment of the country to the descendants of the original slaves. It is not necessarily white people who are paying back the money to the slaves, it is the US Government. Of course that blends everyone together because everyone pays taxes, but the distinction is important. It is sort of like the difference between suing a person vs the company they work for.
3) A fair point. If you can point to a significant population of non-african slaves in the USA, then by all means they would be under this as well. I said the thing about africa based on the presumption that all slaves in the united states were of african descent. To my understanding, most african-americans are descended from slaves, but the exact numbers I do not know. Also, although it was an edit, I did touch on it at the end of my last post. Specifically, if reparations are given for slavery then why not other historical wrongs?
4) Lowering tuition and reducing taxes does give a monetary pay out, just indirectly. Giving lump sums of cash would be vulnerable to theft and fraud; doesn't make it impossible to do but does lower its efficiency and effectiveness. Further, we are not talking about giving reparations to slaves, we are talking about the government taking responsibility for spoiling the opportunity of their descendants; for robbing all opportunity from their ancestors for multiple generations and then leaving them with nothing. We are talking about giving reparations to the descendants of slaves. This I think leads to the actual meat and potatoes of this issue.
The core question I feel is "should you make amends for your ancestor's crimes?", and is an interesting one from an ethical standpoint. It really is a question of how long responsibility for making amends for an action extends into the future through the generations. If someone told me that my father ruined the lives of a family of people by stealing all of their money and giving it to me in the form of an inheritance, I would feel guilty and want to give that inheritance to that family of people instead of keeping it. If someone told me that one of my distant ancestors stole all of the money from a family in 8500 BCE, I would feel considerably less guilty about keeping the money (but that could just be because I am a shitty person). because that money was likely diluted long, long ago. Is it a gradient in between? Should you not feel guilty for an action your ancestors did after 1000 years, and after 500 years only 50% guilty, if it has only been 50 years you should only feel 95% guilty? I only really see 3 options that are ethically consistent: A) You should never feel guilty or responsible when benefiting from a cruel act you yourself did not commit, B) You should always feel guilty and seek to make reparations for every known wrong committed by your ancestors in history, C) Define a strict cutoff point and interpolate between now and that cutoff point (the decision making process for that cutoff point would be very interesting to say the least). So far my position could be summarized as follows: "A great atrocity has been committed here. Crossing our arms and saying 'I did'n do nothin'. You ain't gettin' shit! *spits in spittoon*' seems monstrously callous. What should be done? What can be done to right this wrong?" MirrorIrorriM (talk) 18:12, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
"An exact number will never be arrived at."
It's not that we can't get an exact number, it's that we can't even get an order of magnitude.
"Of course that blends everyone together because everyone pays taxes, but the distinction is important."
So the guy whose ancestors fought to end slavery in US would pay for it, and if I move to USA (I'm European) then I would pay for it. (Despite none of my ancestors benefited from slavery.)
"If you can point to a significant population of non-african slaves in the USA, then by all means they would be under this as well."
Why it must be significant?
"Specifically, if reparations are given for slavery then why not other historical wrongs?"
Yes, why not? And that's a big problem. Essentially everybody's ancestor have been somehow victims of wrongdoings, we should put a reparation for everything. Some of my ancestors fought in both WWI and WWII, one died in battle, one was tortured by Nazi, one came back to home reduced to a human skeleton. Their families suffered famine and poverty. To whom should I ask reparation? Germany? Italy? The descendant of those Nazis? And I'm talking of much more recent things than US slavery.
"we are not talking about giving reparations to slaves, we are talking about the government taking responsibility for spoiling the opportunity of their descendants;"
Then, at least, it should leave to the descendants the choice of how to spend their compensation.
""A great atrocity has been committed here. Crossing our arms and saying 'I did'n do nothin'. You ain't gettin' shit! *spits in spittoon*' seems monstrously callous. What should be done? What can be done to right this wrong?""
Trying to not repeat it? Trying to improve the World for everybody? I mentioned the injustices done to my ancestors. In a couple of generations of just a little of decent society, here I am doing very well, and without any reparation. Thinker(unlicensed) 21:14, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
You fail to acknowledge a critical piece. The society that benefited the most from slavery was not the US, but Europe and especially Britain. Sure, the plantation owners got rich from slavery, but that's nothing in comparison to the wealth generated from the processing of cotton into clothing. Remind me, what was the biggest thing to be industrialized? Spoiler alert, it was the power loom. Britain's wealth derived from slave labor, and something like 75% of the cotton produced in the US in 1860 was exported to Britain alone. Between cotton and rubber, the industrial revolution would not have happened when it happened and where it happened without slavery. This wealth was then used to dominate a quarter of the globe.
So then, is Britain going to pay reparations? CoryUsar (talk) 08:37, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
as arguments go, thats complete bullshit. you could have gone with Britain being an active participant of the slave trade, Bristol and Liverpool for example were built by the slave trade. instead you go with a 'britan traded with the us' line. its complete bullshit. we got our cotton from india before the us and during your civil war we ent for Egyptian cotton. Britain would have got rich with r without the us. the claim is bullshit. AMassiveGay (talk) 08:53, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
and aside from anything else, another country is culpability and debt doesnt magic away your own country's culpability and debt. there is plenty of that to go around. AMassiveGay (talk) 11:12, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
@CoryUsar Even if the UK is more at fault, it doesn't mean we aren't at fault. Are you suggesting we sanction the UK until they pay reparations to us, and then we distribute that? From the point of argument, it may be that they should (from an ethical standpoint) pay reparations, but that does not absolve us from doing so (assuming reparations are an ethical responsibility). If you have a mafia of people who commit a crime together, you don't just arrest the godfather of the mafia; you arrest the subordinates and accomplices too. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 12:46, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Remember the UK partook in the slave trade too, when the Brits finally abolished slavery, they payed reparations to the slave owners, we didn't do that here in America. Oxyaena Harass 23:59, 21 June 2019 (UTC)

thinker I must disagree with you that black people built this country. or that they deserve reperations their fam. — Unsigned, by: Harrypotterfan96 / talk / contribs

To me, it seems almost insulting to even consider putting a price tag on human suffering like this; it comes off as suggesting that all the negative effects of slavery will magically disappear if reparations are paid. If anything, the only true way of atoning is by increasing opportunities for them while making sure the mistakes of the past aren't repeated. The perpetrators are all long dead, and it's nonsensical to compel their descendents to atone on their behalf for something they had no part of and might have even opposed if they had a say in the matter. I can't imagine how any kind of benefit such a payment would bring might outweigh the resentment and bitterness it would invoke in the process...especially since money alone can't dismantle the racial prejudices built into much of American society.
Plus, if it's funded by taxes you then have the bizarre position of blacks being taxed to pay for their own reparations; the absurdity of that situation should be obvious. There should be a reckoning with the damage slavery has caused, but reparations are exactly the wrong way to go about it. (On that note, the Democrats talking about it are likely doing so just to rouse their black voter base; I assume they would know about the practical difficulties we've talked about here.) --Logos (talk) 03:10, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
I ain't talking about the slave trade in general, but slavery in the US only. The largest beneficiaries of slavery in the US were the British factory owners. CoryUsar (talk) 04:36, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
and I repeat, that's an argument as irrelevant as it is bullshit. AMassiveGay (talk) 08:19, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Thinker(unlicensed) 14:04, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Personally, I think that reparations at this point are stupid and pointless. The ex-slaves are dead, so we can't pay them enough to start a new life. The (ex)-slave owners are dead so we can't demand they help repair the harm they caused. Everyone involved is dead and gone, so why bother with old wounds? Better to push for more effective safeguards and help the living, not mourn and gnash our teeth over the long dead. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:24, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Yes. The practical problem of reparations is getting people to agree on the terms of payment. It is likely that, were reparations paid, the payments would be considered inadequate by some, and exorbitant by others, leaving few truly satisfied. Much better to drop historical considerations and focus on programs to assist all economically deprived citizens: affordable healthcare for low income people, affordable education, incentives to enable home ownership, etc. It is politically unwise to focus upon an expensive program that benefits only a fraction of low-income people.Ariel31459 (talk) 16:48, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
"Better to push for more effective safeguards and help the living...", "focus on programs to assist all economically deprived citizens:"
@GrammarCommie@Ariel31459 That's the point I made a couple posts above ("Trying to not repeat it? Trying to improve the World for everybody?") Thinker(unlicensed) 16:59, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
The argument that the US as a whole and not just the Deep South should pay reparations, in spite of having half a million men sent to an early death in order to stop the practice, hinges on the notion that the North still benefited massively from slavery in spite of not directly practicing it. It's not a bad argument, but the flaw is that Britain benefited even more than the North did from slavery, and that's not getting into how slavery was inherited from the British and thus the US should only be liable for the slavery that happened between 1776 (declaration of independence) and 1863 (emancipation proclamation). Well, plus the couple of years for the slaves in Kentucky and such that were exempt from the emancipation proclamation.
I could get into my cocoa beans and prostitution spiel (short version, people who purchase knowingly unethically sourced goods aren't all that much better than the criminals themselves), but I'm not sure you want to get involved in that. CoryUsar (talk) 00:46, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
i can see value in the argument Britain profited from the slave trade and was an active participant of it - I clearly stated that we were and Im not disputing that. I question that by simply doing business with the us Britain is 'more' culpable than actual slave owners, who unambiguously and solely profited from slavery. that is bullshit. pure and simply. it is similarly bullshit to suggest that the industrial revolution or british empire was dependent on slavery I the us is similarly arse. slavery and plantations accounted for less than 5% of british economy at this time. you are over estimating the importance of the US in this period. the west indies were far more important to Britain.
shifting blame to Britain of your country's ills is not dealing with them at all and it does nothing to deal with the poisoned legacy of slavery in your country AMassiveGay (talk) 09:25, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
"slavery and plantations accounted for less than 5% of british economy at this time". Bollocks, utter utter bollocks. That's like saying that steel amounts to only 1% of the economy in an economy where 50% of it is stuff made out of steel. Slavery may have only been 5% of the economy, but between cotton and indigo and tobacco, etc, a much larger chunk of the economy relied upon slavery. CoryUsar (talk) 23:01, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
no. britains economy relied on dominating the textiles industry. we did this by crushing the competition through mechanisation, forcing the end product onto the captive market of empire (something, I note, brexiters think we can still pull off) and through protectionist tariffs. where we got the cotton from was irrelevant. American cotton was only preferred because of its suitability for the mechanised processes in british industry, not because of any economic advantage from us slavery - it was the cotton gin that made American cotton profitable not the slavery. if it weren't so, we wouldn't have abandoned Egyptian cotton and gone back to american cotton after the us civil war.
the US south got rich from slavery and in turn it developed the north, and northern merchants got rich from slavery. the us was literally built by slavery. (perhaps that why the founding fathers are so deified - it ignores that truth).
what is utter bollocks, is that anyone but the us profited the most from slavery in the us. what is utter bollocks is passing off the responsibility of us slavery onto anyone but the us. That is utter, utter bollocks AMassiveGay (talk) 03:59, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
My point is that the argument that "the North and thus the US as a whole should pay reparations because they profited more from slavery than the slave owners themselves" has an interesting conclusion.
And my goat, the very first thing you mentioned was the textile industries. Let's back up a bit and ask a serious, modern question. Today, right now at this moment, there are de facto slaves in Ghana harvesting cocoa beans. How rich do you think those slave owners are? Or more pertinently, are they richer than the confectionary companies like Hershey and Mars which purchase the cocoa? It's entirely possible to profit from slavery even more than the person owning the slaves directly. CoryUsar (talk) 10:50, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
it would have an interesting conclusion if that was an argument I was making. it is not. my argument has been from the beginning is you cannot unpick responsibility for slavery from the us as a whole. economically, politically, literally, north and south where combined. from George Washington through to Lincoln, most us presidents were slave owners, most actively defended slavery, one was a slave trader, only two actively opposed slavery - and then only one while in office. supreme court justices were mostly slave onwners. slavery expanded as the country got richer. my argument has never been Britain did not profit from slavery (biggest trader of slaves in the 18th) but that the suggestion that Britain profited more from specifically us slavery (absolute terms? maybe, Britain controlled over half the globe, Proportionately though?) than the us is utter bullshit. the us as a whole needs to take responsibility for its past as whole, because, and I repeat, the us was built as a whole by slavery.
and lets be lets be clear, the us as a whole, has never taken responsibility for its past. its always north v south, along civil war lines, a war which no more absolves the north of responsibility than abolishing slavery 30 years earlier does for Britain, leaving a poisonous legacy of oppression, segregation, and considering the racial bias of the justice system, still has black people in the us today facing slavery in a for profit prison system. and if you take in your 'de facto slavery' argument, slavery never ended in the us.
as for ghana, what about it? suggesting that ghana today, a victim of empire, a victim of the very trade in discussion, and now a victim of the economic hegemony of a different kind of empire is in any way comparable to a country that at the time that this discussion concerns, was ever growing in territory, in money, and in power? its disengenuous at best. as is the idea that the 'de facto slavery' which you describe is comparable to the chattel slavery of the south? that is weak, weak sauce. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:03, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

(reset)@AMassiveGay & especially @CorruptUser, I think you guys are missing the forest for the tree's here. Europe, and especially the UK played an important role in the North Atlantic Slave trade. But Europe's legacy is probably less slavery and more the stealing of resources from Africa. Also, while the UK may have brought slavery to the States, the US took slavery and cranked everything to 11, especially the cruelty suffering. I'm disappointed as well that this whole conversation has devolved into "slavery was a long time ago". This is technically correct, but the institutional and systemic mistreatment of black people has been a feature of American society, and there is certainly evidence that the slavery created conditions that required mass incarceration, sharecropping, and Jim Crow, institutions targeted at black Americans, creating much of the economic inequality we still witness today. This entire conversation should not be, are black Americans entitled to some form of reparations, because only hardcore racialists and trolly contrarians (UT) would argue they aren't. The conversation needs to be, how much government intervention is necessary begin to correct the centuries racism that has directly benefited this country.RipCityLiberal (talk) 17:01, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

I don't disagree, but if people are gong to trot out the 'im from the north, not my probs', it does need to addressed. in deed little progress will be made if it isnt addressed. I did touch on this, but it was kinda an afterthought to the point I was attempting to make. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:55, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
I mean, I think we need to have a commission set up to look into the issue. This discussion is going to happen at some point in the future, we should probably do so now before future injustices are committed and present ones are prolonged. Besides, a commission would probably be better able to assess the issue than we can now at this moment. I do also agree with the general idea of reparations, but I don't know what form they should take. RoninMacbeth (talk) 06:43, 26 June 2019 (UTC)
@RipCityLiberal well if your going to give reparations to former slaves then you can't stop there. They may have suffered the most back in the 1700-1800-1900 (wow we suck) but other groups suffered too. What about catholics, latino, asians (we got put in prison camps and faced immigration laws). Do you think all of these groups deserve reperation too? How would you quantify the pain and distribute the payment? Commie Lib (talk) 18:35, 27 June 2019 (UTC)

(reset)@Tabula RasaCouple things. There were reparations for Japanese Internment. There is not really a history of oppression among other groups that is quite as devastating for black Americans. Native Americans are a similar comparison, and receive a modicum support. But your missing a key point to this exercise. Black Americans, for large portions of American history had no legal recourse. There are multiple instances of Native American tribes suing the state and federal governments. The United States following WWII also went out of it's way to help Asian populations immigrate to the US to counter Russian influence. There is a clear history of the US committing atrocities, and atoning for those atrocities with benefits and payments. But no atrocity has been as severe as chattle slavery and there has been no adequate correction to such an atrocity since reconstruction. RipCityLiberal (talk) 18:55, 27 June 2019 (UTC)

" There is not really a history of oppression" Cough Cough, Cough , and This. Commie Lib (talk) 20:15, 27 June 2019 (UTC)
that right there is lovely bit of quote mining. bravo AMassiveGay (talk) 20:42, 27 June 2019 (UTC)
@AMassiveGay how was what I did quote mining. That was not taken out of context and I wasn't misquoting sources because I just left the links. Commie Lib (talk) 21:05, 27 June 2019 (UTC)
It's a quote mine because you neglected the other half of the sentence. Native American genocide is certainly similar in scope to Chattle slavery, but not institution. And there is of course plenty of instances of killings of Chinese workers. But it never amounted to being the literal property of someone for life. And not just you, your children, and your grandchildren. Chattle slavery was generations of being sub-human. RipCityLiberal (talk) 21:13, 27 June 2019 (UTC)

A really expensive milkshake[edit]

As a consequence of his actions, Paul Crowther, the man who threw a milkshake to Nigel Farage

  • was fired from his job as a technical advisor for telecoms company Sky;
  • was handed a 12-month Community Order and ordered to complete 150 hours of unpaid work;
  • was ordered to pay £350 compensation to Farage, a £85 victim surcharge, and £85 in legal costs;

and, most of all, stopped justifying his actions and pleaded guilty with his tail between his legs. CNN, BusinessInsider Thinker(unlicensed) 21:48, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

Will somebody please think of the fascist!? Guy got his money back through GoFundMe, dude. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 21:51, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
Did he also get his dignity back through GoFundMe? Thinker(unlicensed) 21:57, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
The real crime here is that he had to pay compensation to the fascist bastard. Oxyaena Harass 21:58, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
Nigel Farage lost that dignity years ago. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:00, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
Meanwhile the guy who egged Corbyn had to pay a higher victim surcharge and got a month in jail… --RWRW (talk) 22:03, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
@RWRW That's good too, and a much severe sentence seems right. The article says there was premeditation (the guy carried many eggs), and I think that throwing a solid object is a more serious assault. Thinker(unlicensed) 22:11, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
All UT has done here is illustrate that the criminal justice system protects people who seek to destroy it. RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:12, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
It certainly protects rich people in power. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:16, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
@Oxyaena @RipCityLiberal Do you really think that the justice system should have not condemned Crowther? How that would work? If somebody is assaulted, then the justice system condemn the attacker depending if it thinks that the assaulted is or is not a fascist? Thinker(unlicensed) 22:19, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

(Reset)The criminal justice system was built by rich white men, for rich white men, to protect rich white men. It is inadequate to address racism, xenophobia, and violations of human rights because it was not designed to address them.RipCityLiberal (talk) 23:50, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

Rich people get consistently lighter sentences than a poor person would, the whole thing's a sham. Oxyaena Harass 07:29, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
Paul Manafort pythoncoder  (talk | contribs) 20:17, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

such a 'harsh' sentence. my brother got a similar sentence for driving while disqualified - its nothing, even less if you think as UT does and it was an assault on democracy. hardly a vindication for self righteous hand wringing the other day from UT. Meanwhile those who actually have assaulted democracy, actual racists, actual Nazis, actual violent thugs cry over a bit of milkshake. the damage they have caused, they would have got off light if they had been bottled, not milkshaked. AMassiveGay (talk) 00:01, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

an lets not forget who the targets where here - an actual violent racist thug. a racist whose discourse consists of racism and rap jokes. an a racist, who not content for fucking my country based on lies, racism and his ego, didn't what to dicuss policy or his manifesto until after the election. this is the 'democracy' under assault. sleep tight 'democracy', UTs got your back AMassiveGay (talk) 00:12, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
Making a point against evil has always had risks attached - it is what makes martyrs at an extreme. Aloysius the Gaul 02:34, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

Maybe Jo Brand was right, a milkshake is not good enough for vile minded pricks like Farage. And do remember this is the man who claimed he would 'pick up a rifle' if brexit is not delivered. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/nigel-farage-brexit-rifle-pick-up-uk-eu-withdrawal-ukip-leader-liberal-democrat-a7741331.html seems a dairy based product trumps a rifle. On a similar note, anyone catch this years Reith Lectures with Jonathan Sumption? Lecture 5 ends with a Q&A which briefly involves one of Farage's pathologically dishonest fellow party member, Mark Reckless. I've no idea how Sumption calmly dismisses the distorted take on the situation, but kudos to the man See page 9 of the transcription here http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/radio4/reith2019/Reith_2019_Sumption_lecture_5.pdf Audio of the lectures are here https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m00060vc Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:15, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

Cryptid "Cat-Fox" Confirmed[edit]

So recently a cryptid/ local legend from the Mediterranean island of Corsica, known locally as "ghjattu-volpe" has been scientifically identified as a new species. Strike another win for Cryptozoology. Any rational thoughts on this new species and it's a discovery?

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2019/06/19/cat-fox-corsica-mysterious-new-mammal/1503333001/ (talk) 13:25, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
"has been scientifically identified as a new species."
The usatoday article says it "could be a mysterious new mammal," so I'm not sure if it is really a new species. Thinker(unlicensed) 13:44, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
So a local variant on these (possibly with island-bottleneck-ing and interbreeding with local working-farm-moggies.
If one had never seen dogs before these and these might be seen as different species. Anna Livia (talk) 14:05, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
they specifically say its DNA is different to that of a wildcat. AMassiveGay (talk) 14:18, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
They say it's distinct from the European wildcat, not necessarily wildcats in general. See below. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 14:24, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
From Heavy.com, quoting Pierre Benedetti, "By looking at its DNA, we could tell it apart from the European wildcat, Felis silvestris silvestris. It’s close to the African forest cat, Felis silvestris lybica, but its exact identity is still to be determined. If the hypothesis is true, its origins are Middle Eastern."
So they're looking between several subspecies of Felis silvestris, or wildcat. So it's not a new species in the literal sense. This isn't a literal cross between a cat and a fox, any more than a tanukiWikipedia is a literal cross between a raccoon and a dog. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 14:23, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Instead of boring DNA tests, wouldn't be more funny trying to make it breed with a cat? Thinker(unlicensed) 15:42, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
they already have Savannah cats AMassiveGay (talk) 17:04, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Wildcats in much of Europe are already threatened due to interbreeding with domestic cats. --Annanoon (talk) 13:56, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

Summer Solstice[edit]

So what are the RW celebrations? Anna Livia (talk) 14:05, 21 June 2019 (UTC)

We'll sacrifice a goat to Helios. Oxyaena Harass 14:42, 21 June 2019 (UTC)

Racism in universities[edit]

How did we come to the point that a literature professor can blatantly write this racist stuff without getting called out? It seems like we are back to the 50s or even before that.

— Unsigned, by: 2605:6400:20:9ce::1 / talk 14:41, 21 June 2019‎

Ah-ha, I see what you did. You took what a black professor allegedly wrote and switched around all the references to "black" and "white." That totally isn't a thing that anyone's ever done before.
You know, I find it a little funny that there don't appear to be any original sources when trying to search for the line "I shake the evil out of my head and go into the subway" on Google -- just a list less than a page long of links to /pol/ and alt-right websites. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 15:24, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Here is the original article written by Nicholas Powers and titled "Seeing poor white people makes me happy" http://archive.is/2cRrM It's real. — Unsigned, by: 2620:7:6001::ffff:c759:e648 / talk / contribs
Nationalists Supremacists tend to be very hateful people. This wouldn't be the first psycho with a PhD...
Edit: Striked through nationalist because it wasn't the word I meant to use. Kept it because other comments comment on it. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 17:26, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
@MirrorIrorriM From what I have found about this Nicholas Powers, it seems to me that the "*ist" that better applies to him is "racist." Have you find something that suggests he is a nationalist? Maybe of some black supremacist utopia, otherwise it doesn't make much sense. Thinker(unlicensed) 19:12, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Oops, I actually used the wrong word. I meant supremacist. Apologies for the confusion. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 21:46, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Consider me surprised. Then again, I'm not sure I should be from a website edgy enough to use the name "RaceBaitr."
On top of what Mirror said, it looks like the piece was rather quickly taken down. Archives after 6/13 had to go off of the Google Cache of the website rather than the site itself. On top of that, RaceBaitr itself appears to be small press; Alexa ranks it #789,948, a visible uptick from the rank of #943,583 it had just prior to the publishing of the article (gee, I wonder why) -- in comparison, as of writing, incoherent Christian conspiracy crank site Jesus-Is-Savior.com ranks #131,148, Practical Fishkeeping (Britain's best-selling fishkeeping magazine) ranks #227,422, and the TypewriterDatabase.com, the world's largest database of mechanical typewriter serial numbers, ranks #435,524. There are more people routinely interested in the numbers on antique typewriters than this platform.
So the answer to your impassioned inquiry as to why anyone hasn't dared to do anything about it might be... nobody knew it even existed? ℕoir LeSable (talk) 19:32, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
"a website edgy enough to use the name "RaceBaitr."
@Noir LeSable What does that mean? I searched "Baitr" and it doesn't seem to be an English word. Thinker(unlicensed) 19:51, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
"Baitr" is a stylized form of "Baiter". It is referencing something called "race-baiting", which is a term used in the USA for when someone uses unfair statements about someone's race to try and provoke a reaction out of someone. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 21:51, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
@UnlicensedThinker Basically what Mirror said. It's hopping onto the trend of websites/apps removing that penultimate 'e', like Grindr, Tumblr, Flickr, and Scribd. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 02:29, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
What really rustles my jimmies is the fact that they capitalized one of the pair of black/white and not the other. It's all or nothing, you don't get to pick and choose with that stylistic choice. Spriggina (parolo) (kontribuoj) @ 03:39, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Happy Summer Solstice to all you Heathens on RationalWiki!!!!!!![edit]

Us Pagans, Wiccans and the like are heathens anyways but happy first day of summer. If you are below the equator, happy Winter Solstice. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 16:43, 21 June 2019 (UTC)

summer can do one. AMassiveGay (talk) 17:07, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Many blessings to you all. For me, every day is darker for the next six months. (talk) 04:31, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Privatisation / Outsourcing[edit]

Here's something that has been bouncing in my mind for a while, and with this story recently breaking it made me think even harder, and I can't really come to a conclusion. So I figured I'd ask people. Also, for what it's worth, we all know the idea of privatisation and nationalisation of industries is pretty strongly linked to political ideology, BUT for this bit alone I'd really like people to try and be as unbiased as possible. Devil's advocate the fuck out of it if you can.

I don't understand how privatisation of certain state services, such as prisons, probation services, and forensics testing services like in my link, can ever be logically justified. I'm gonna outline what I mean, but also I'm gonna point out that I know some people will already be arguing that they shouldn't be state provided services to begin with, but in the majority of cases they WERE, and have since been privatised. So in the case of forensics testing services. Let's say when the nationalised state service existed, it cost £10 to carry out a test. A private company offers to carry out the same test for £8. So the logical conclusion would be to use the private company, right? But what I don't get is how the private company can actually offer an equivalent or better service for less than the nationalised service. The government has to pay that £8 for the test, but some of that £8 is going to be pure profit for the company. So they are somehow spending less than £8 on that test, whereas the nationalised service is spending the full £10 because there's no profit involved. The thing is, none of the reasons I can think of for that difference existing actually make sense to me. Here are the ones I can think of:

1) The private company is paying its staff less. In which case what that says to me is that either they're paying their staff too little, or the government is paying their staff too much. If it's the former, the government shouldn't be endorsing it. You can't say "WE think forensics staff are worth £x per hour, but y company is paying them £lessthanx, and since it's not us, we think that's a good idea because it saves us money without making us feel guilty". I think this is most likely what IS happening, but it's pathetic on the face of it and it's unbelievable to me that people don't point this out constantly. If it's the government paying their staff too much, then reduce what you're paying them. They can't go elsewhere to earn more money if the market rate is so much lower than the government rate anyway.

2) The private company is cutting corners and providing a subpar service. The problems with this one are obvious; this isn't something you want.

3) The general idea that the private sector somehow attracts a better quality of staff. Again, I've never understood this one. If they're charging £8 per test and paying their staff less than £8 per test, how the hell are they getting better staff than you if you're paying a full £10 per test? Being a private entity doesn't automatically generate magical money to pay for better staff. Even if the government was charging £8 per test too, the full 100% of the £8 is going directly into the service.

4) Economy of scale. This only works for certain industries, like postal services, where it becomes unfeasible for any one department to have access to systems that'll let them deliver something to every address on the planet. It does NOT make sense when talking about things that the government 100% needs 100% of the time, like prisons.

I just can't see how it ever makes logical sense to do it. You are demonstrably getting less of a service than the nationalised route because of the profit margin: a private company is going to take a % of whatever you're buying from them and use it as pure profit, but a nationalised organisation doesn't have that at all, so 100% of your fee goes to 100% of the service.

The only argument I can ever see making sense is the "government departments are bloated red tape" things where you get less of a service than the cold efficient private sector. Which I can see happening. But I can't see why they don't just spruce that shit up. How on earth does it make more sense to completely close a department due to inefficiency, then pay a private company with a track record of fucking everything up (G4S, for example) to do the same thing for basically the same amount of money, instead of spending the effort required to clear up your own internal department? ESPECIALLY when you know it's gonna come back to bite you. Like G4S.

What obvious benefits am I missing that overcomes all these obvious flaws? It can't possibly be JUST politicians taking backhanded payments from private companies. I 100% accept that goes on but I can't see it being the only reason this ever happens. The negatives outweigh the positives too much for me to accept entire governments go along with it just because a few guys get some money. X Stickman (talk) 18:29, 21 June 2019 (UTC)

"I don't get is how the private company can actually offer an equivalent or better service for less than the nationalised service."
It could be thousands of reasons. Some that come to my mind: The company has developed a less expensive technology for performing the test; The company has reached a better agreement with the producers of the materials for the test; The company is actually losing some money, but sees becoming the leader in that sector as a very good investment; The cost of doing the test for the company is close to zero, because it uses machines and other stuff that it has already and that otherwise would be unused (for example, I know a company that produces chemicals for the motor industry and does a lot of unrelated things for the government, because it can do them with their laboratories whose maintenance is paying anyway). Thinker(unlicensed) 19:01, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
In the US, calls for privatization are driven by investors drooling over the prospect of making a huge killing by monetizing essential services. Example: a product (security services) with a captive market (airline passengers) that will only increase over time (airline travel). For a nominal payout, conservative think tanks and politicians do the dirty work of scaring the proles into supporting legislation that will make it happen. At least that's the theory. So far, the TSA, VA, and USPS are still in federal hands. Millennium Scallion (talk) 19:37, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Wow, the part "Also, for what it's worth, we all know the idea of privatisation and nationalisation of industries is pretty strongly linked to political ideology, BUT for this bit alone I'd really like people to try and be as unbiased as possible." was really dodged. Thinker(unlicensed) 19:43, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
Um, TSA at the airport where I live has been privatized, and I know our airport is not alone. Also, the VA and USPS do plenty of outsourcing. Ever hear of a contracted post office? (talk) 18:15, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
I work for a government service that has industry counterparts and can speak a little to the benefits of both. A government entity will typically have very high standards for record keeping. I actually have records from 1976 from when my laboratory bought cleaning alcohol for 2 dollars. I have records that trace back some of our equipment to the reconstruction era (1871!), where the original companies that produced the equipment are dead, gone, and forgotten. Government agencies typically are far better at being accredited and making sure the paperwork side of a business is done honestly and correctly. Unfortunately, maintaining a solid paper trail is expensive and a lot of companies cut corners here very severely. I've personally shut down a laboratory because they claimed they met a particular standard, but after inspection it became obvious they didn't understand what they were doing. But it's true, we cost quite a bit more than industry. Basically, you can expect a government entity to be honest (as long as it has nothing to do with politics) and thorough, but a company to be fast and cheap.
1) I don't know about the UK, but in the US government workers are typically paid significantly less than private workers. I could make 10% more if I just switched to working for a company with starting salary. Pay growth is also much slower. My boss makes the same amount I do, and so does their boss too!
2) It depends how many corners you need! The government will try to meet any arbitrary standard, regardless of cost. A company will try to give the minimum product necessary while maximizing profit. For this reason they often can provide many services very quickly. If you just need a lot of things, and you don't particularly care if a few of them are missing corners, then there is no reason to go with a government entity which is likely to be slower and more methodical.
3) The private sector pays far more, but it is more competitive. Because of this, people who are primarily concerned with money will often work for industry because...well...they get more money! People who get kicked out of industry but still need a job will often find one in the government. You end up getting three kinds of people in the government: People who are trying to get a good resume so they can leave the government and work for companies, people who aren't good at their jobs and the only place that will hire them is the government, and idealists who think that companies in their field are unethical and refuse to work for them when alternatives exist. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 23:10, 21 June 2019 (UTC)
In my line of work (I'm a job coach with disabled adults) the pay situation is actually reversed, the people who work for the state get way more than us, but they also have worse outcomes. The main difference is that private companies in our line can have smaller, more personalized services, eg. group homes with fewer people, disability-specific programs, that allow for more individualized attention (my state is still having issues with shutting down the Southbury Training SchoolWikipedia, and their other facilities are much better but also huge). That they pay us less (though the state just forced them to give us a raise this year!) frees up more money to be spent on those things, and as hard as it is on us as employees the extra money sure helps them. Also, with finding jobs and similar, agencies can directly contract with other companies much easier than the state can. Finally, if there's an issue involving abuse and neglect the state can investigate, and monitor internal investigations, and in that scenario they have much less incentive than a company to try to cover things up. These things definitely don't translate to a lot of other fields, as the clientele in almost any other setting can advocate for themselves much better than ours, but with the uniquely awful history of this field being what it is it's actually worked out well; agencies do most of the direct services, and a state agency is there to supervise and, in emergency situations, intervene. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 00:56, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Privatization is great and all until they hand you a bill for using the fucking ambulance, or they let your house burn down because you couldn't afford to pay. Oxyaena Harass 03:07, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Yeah. I don't know exactly where the line is, but the idea of private fire departments and similar is outrageous. Even Ayn Rand didn't go that far. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 05:01, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
In Ancient Rome Crassus owned the fire department, and he'd haggle the price of putting out the fire in your house while your house was burning. Glad to know things have improved since then. Oxyaena Harass 05:12, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Where I live, the ambulances are owned by the county fire department, the EMTs work for the county, and riding in one still results in a bill coming in the mail from some medical billing company in Atlanta. (talk) 01:59, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
As soon as services are necessary, the government should be in charge of operation, execution and payment.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 19:02, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

have you people ever been posters on 4chan or 8chan's /pol/?[edit]

what youre experiences with the site? i'm curious. Harrypotterfan96 (talk) 01:57, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

No. CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 02:05, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Why would we? ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 02:08, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

so no former /pol/llacks?Harrypotterfan96 (talk) 02:15, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Go away, little troll. Cosmikdebris (talk) 02:24, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Troll? I'm not so sure. Perhaps the OP here simply hasn't any real idea of how unlikely that RW frequenters would have frequented the morass that is chan-space in general, never mind the /pol boards. True, it's obvious to us, but hey-- sometimes ignorance is an excuse. Kencolt (talk) 01:02, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
I occasionally peered over at 4Chan in "the old days" when it was, as Hannasanarion alluded to, a fair bit less racist / conspiracy, was mostly known for the chaos of /b/, and in that space really was more like a far-less restrained SomethingAwful at that time. Never got the appeal and never posted there, but it's where a certain side of Internet meme-age came from back then for whatever reason. Gamergate basically broke that space, and now it seems the only meme-age that comes from there is alt-right / conspiracy loon memes. These days, if you made a drinking game where you take a sip of ordinary strength beer every time you see a racist phrase on 8Ch's /pol/'s first page, you'd probably be critically endangering your health. (In "the old days" Stormfront was destination #1 for the current inhabitants of /pol/ world, though there was a touch of spill-over, like there still is today, on places like FreeRepublic or the Fox News comment section.) Gizmodo in 2013 remembers some of the best and worst of old 4Chan (though signs of the current 4Chan were there back then, you know, I'll take LOLcats over QAnon any day of the week.) Soundwave106 (talk) 23:42, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
@Kencolt the username makes it obvious that the OP is a sock of that idiot named after a Harry Potter character who goes around talking about raping people and crap. Troll (talk) 02:04, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
I did not know of, nor have I until now been aware of, such a person. Instead, I have been existing in relative bliss, ignorant of his or her or it's existence. Thank you ever so much for ruining that for me, you bastard. Kencolt (talk) 08:22, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

I went on there once, which suffice to say was one time too many. --Logos (talk) 02:52, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

Visited a couple times before it was famous for being a racist hellscape, 2011-2013ish. Didn't see the appeal vs reddit or a traditional forum. Hannasanarion (talk) 01:37, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

Playing the Victim[edit]

Oxyaena Harass 03:15, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

I've read a number of books and seen some TV shows and films on Japanese atrocities, such as on "comfort women." Video games, probably not so much. Perhaps it's because of US guilt over dropping nukes, or just because it's easier to make something cartoony like Wolfenstein without seeming racist? UK-influenced reactions tend to be less muted (Bridge on the River Kwai, Empire of the Sun, etc.), perhaps from a general tendency to know about atrocities in the then-British world: Hong Kong, Malaya, etc. CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 14:39, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Yeah, I think part of it is just that Americans feel guilty for harming innocent Japanese citizens during WWII in a way that we didn't do for Germans. Spriggina (parolo) (kontribuoj) @ 16:43, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
During the war, Japanese people were alienized far more than German people. Between the concentration camps and the stereotype-ridden propaganda, it is hard to separate the war from the racism. In propaganda of the time, Germans were presented as evil people, Japanese were presented as non-people. Hannasanarion (talk) 01:16, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
This was at least in part a reaction to Japanese behavior during the war. During the battle of OkinawaWikipedia, the Japanese had around 96,000 soldiers and conscripts from the local population. More than 80,000 of them died; around 7,000 surrendered or were captured. Suicidal 'banzai' charges took place very frequently. We did Japan a great favor by dropping atom bombs on them. If you think the demonization and dehumanization of the Japanese people in US culture during WWII was excessive and outrageous, imagine the forms it would have taken if we had to move forward with our plans to invade the home islands and fight a hundred more Okinawas over them. It would have been the end of their culture. Now, I think we should have dealt with some European malefactors similarly: the end of WWII was probably our best opportunity to abolish the imperial papacy; we should have called Pius XII onto the carpet, and demanded that he renounce his claims to an earthly kingdom, infallibility, and primacy or else we'd give him a short fall from a tall tree. Dealt with him like we did with Hirohito, in other words. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 04:51, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
that dehumanisation thing went both ways as far as I can tell. its almost as if war is a bad a thing and brings the worst out in people. dehumanisation was certainly easier between Japanese and the western allied powers, literal oceans between them and would have been, pre war, unlikely to bump into one another in day to day life. it was present pre war too and the japanese were under estimated as a result- Singapore might not have been such an 'easy' victory had we not. germans less likely to be dehumanised simply due to looking like us, they were Europeans and so were we. AMassiveGay (talk) 08:35, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
Oh, boo hoo, Japan got nuked and now they're like "don't nuke us anymore!" OF COURSE THEY ARE LIKE WE GOT NUKED DON'T NUKE US ANYMORE! There's not much to the history here. The hard focus on Japan's decision to roll out like they always used to do doesn't ever bring up the circumstances that gave them the exact means to do so in a more modern sense. It is important to know the militant history of Japan. But that shouldn't gloss over the imperialistic/opportunistic history of the United States, nor should it gloss over Japan's current outlook of trade, influence, and maintenance. One country sided with Hitler, learned the huge disadvantage to fucking with a massive militaristic nuclear-capable superpower and focused on how to make their country work. The other went on to maintain the idea that it might use nukes at any point to get what it wants, because don't fuck with it, it's crazy man, it's crazy! Gol Sarnitt (talk) 02:33, 25 June 2019 (UTC)

The Case for Gay Reparation[edit]

Since people were talking about reparations for slavery.

The New York Times: The Case for Gay Reparation

SPOILER ALERT: It's not the same as reparations for slavery. Thinker(unlicensed) 11:31, 22 June 2019 (UTC)

That would at least make a bit more sense than slavery reparations, since there are actually people currently alive who were directly affected by Stonewall. Spriggina (parolo) (kontribuoj) @ 16:39, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Maybe reparations for conversion therapy and the like would not be a bad idea. Oxyaena Harass 18:21, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Slavery Reparation is extremely tricky due to nobody from the slave days being alive. It would take a long time to go through family records and would cost a lot more money. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 20:15, 22 June 2019 (UTC)
Good question; does someone with only 1/8 slave blood qualify? Secondly, how do we discern the difference between freedmen and slaves? Thirdly, if its argued, "well, freedmen might not have been slaves, but they still were subject to Jim Crow segregation," then its no longer slave reparations but segregation reparations. Fourth, Do Northern free states that never had Jim Crow segregation have to pay for Southern states that did? nobsI'm all yea'res 06:46, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
It really bugs me that reparations are being treated as a new idea that you can apply to people just because they were wronged by society. Reparations for slavery used to be normal. During the colonial period and early republic, it was normal that when a person is emancipated, by contract, by will, or by act of the state, they get a payment to start their new lives with, usually of land, food, and money. By 1865, most slave states had laws on the books that banned raparations from being given to black ex-slaves like they would be to white ex-slaves. Congress passed a bill to override those racist state laws and give reparations to the ex-slaves, but virulent racist Andrew Johnson vetoed them. Reparations are not new and they are not arbitrary, they are normal and they are overdue. Hannasanarion (talk) 01:20, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
What about descendants of gays? Can they qualify? nobsI'm all yea'res 04:04, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

there is a paywall on the article so cannot comment on it. on the face of it, it seems idiotic to even suggest that this maybe a similar issue to reparations for slavery. one involves compensating the ancestors of those affected by a historic wrong, people whom the affects of that wrong are still feeling today. the other involves people who are still living, and if not generally have no ancestors to be negatively effected. any wrongs can generally be dealt with via the courts with legal action for a specific breech of human rights - discrimination in employment or housing or what have you. but again, paywall. not commenting on the article directly. AMassiveGay (talk) 08:11, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

it also would depend on what ever wrongs being compensated actually being seen as wrongs by the legal system. slavery is pretty unambiguously seen, legally and morally, as a wrong (unless you are in the US prison system, then you can fil ya boots with legal slavery), discrimination at LGBT people, depending on your locale, less so. AMassiveGay (talk) 08:43, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

Hey, for those who choose it, who says reparative therapy doesn't work? (talk) 02:09, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Soft little moral equivalence fallacy our right-wingers have laid out here. The comparisons are fluffy and thick, the intent is like a fog, settling over and around the argument, cool and transient, without any threat of corporealization. An argument about reparations as smooth and weightless as a silk blanket. I could sleep on this for days. If you mean to use "reparations" explicitly in this case, differently from slavery reparations, which you have no argument against, please, absolutely, use the word, let's go get them reparations for our disadvantaged compatriots. There is no reason to discount reparations for slavery just because of an opinion about how the idea of reparations could be applied to other groups. I'm glad you guys are finally opening your sense-holes, I was about ready to write y'all off. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:53, 26 June 2019 (UTC)

Transgender dating article.[edit]

I was looking for information about the relative sizes of trans-inclusive and trans-exclusive feminist communities. Not much out there, but this seems related. Comments?Ariel31459 (talk) 17:29, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

I think there's a lot more nuance to it than can be expressed by a survey with that little detail. Spriggina (parolo) (kontribuoj) @ 18:48, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
I'm intrigued by the sentence "Of the seven participants who themselves identified as transgender or nonbinary, 89% were willing to date another trans person." So that's six and a quarter out of seven? Or a typo? --Annanoon (talk) 08:58, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
That should probably read "six out of seven" lol. Oxyaena Harass 11:18, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
one in tenAMassiveGay (talk) 12:01, 26 June 2019 (UTC)

Math suggests UFO may be a balloon[edit]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLyEO0jNt6M&feature=youtu.be — Unsigned, by: CogitoNotStirred / talk / contribs

Tier system for diploma mills[edit]

Not all mills are "hand over cash and you get a degree" and some of these schools have actual campuses along with staff that has real credentials. The main thing that makes a school good is the curriculum, knowledgeable faculty and utility of the credential. Places like Almenda University requires a credit card and nothing more. Places like Patriot Bible University have coursework but it is extremely limited and no teaching staff; the end product of Patriot Bible University is our lord and savior Kent Hovind. Still in the murky water but higher than the previously mentioned places- Louisiana Baptist University and Hyles-Anderson College which has actual campuses and teaching staff with somewhat legit credentials. How well would a tier system work in order to help future college students? --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 19:15, 23 June 2019 (UTC)

The real question is do you learn anything useful at any of them (and if so is it something that you can't get free somewhere else)? If not, they're all the same . Bongolian (talk) 21:51, 23 June 2019 (UTC)
Girls who go to Hyles-Anderson learn "how to be a good wife." (Sarcasm). (talk) 02:08, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Liberty University wants to know your location. Oxyaena Harass 10:56, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Redundant category discussion, part deux.[edit]

Once again I'm on a crusade to clean up the article categories, something I should have been working on but got distracted from. I would like for all active users to give their input on which categories are redundant, as several overlap but are not covered by their parent categories. For example, Alt-right is a child category of Neo-Nazism, which in turn is a child category of Nazism, but the Neo-Nazism category lacks the anti-semitism category, as does the Neo-Nazi category. How should we approach this? Add categories? Leave these child categories as is? Should the Neo-Nazi category exclude the Facists/Facism categories? Please, discuss. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:06, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Add some Neo-Nazi's that are under the Alt-Right category (Mikemikev's page for example), under the Neo-Nazi Category? Facists are de-facto anti-semitism. Don't think all Facists are also pro Nazi. Tinribmancer (talk) 15:29, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
There seems to be an issue as to whether it's ok for categories to generalise/approximate, or if a subcategory should only go in a supercategory if literally every member of the subcategory fits in the supercategory. Personally I'm ok with a small amount of generalisation as there's always going to be a few edge-case weirdos (Nazis who deny they're anti-semitic but only hate Muslims and black people, racists who deny they're nationalistic, etc). As to the specifics, I'm less bothered.
I guess there's also a debate as to whether the tree should be very specific and hierarchical, or if it's ok to throw a lot of categories (nazi and fascist and neo-nazi and racist and nationalist) on the same article/category. Wikipedia hasn't really solved these issues either. The best we can hope for is consistency among subgroups or subject areas rather than across the board. --Annanoon (talk) 16:47, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
@Annanoon I'm partly worried about the previous usage of categories to throw extra charges, insults, etc, rather than being used for organization purposes. To that end my goal is to reduce (elimination will of course be impossible) redundancy in each article's categories. So for example, calling a white supremacist or nazi a racist (to use one of my main examples) is redundant and just plain lazy, since these groups are racists, de facto, as part of their core ideology. Likewise in the gender equality arena, anti-feminism (the ideology) is sexist, by default, given the fact that it opposes an ideology that seeks to improve the lot of women in society.
TL;DR The main areas I'm focusing on at this time are categories that implicit when other, more specific, categories are added. And thus allowing for easier navigation of categories to find related articles. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 17:04, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Could a series of Venn diagrams be used to convey this on an explanation page of sorts? CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 17:47, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
It might be useful to consider that some of these categories are names of ideologies that are organized historical movements like Nazism, Italian fascism or Trumpism, while others are as yet only virus-like ideologies, like neo-nazism and alt-rightism. These are not scientific categories because they depend upon their historical context to have meaning and cannot be expected to be coherent. I don't believe the alt-right can be correctly viewed as a subset of Neo-Nazism. Alt-right people are probably not all fascists (i.e., want a dictatorship), but they are white reactionaries. They are white nationalists revolting against modernity. They are their own thing in history. Other categories are not really ideologies but evil characteristics of bad ideologies: e.g. misogyny, homophobia, antisemitism, etc. Ariel31459 (talk) 23:39, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Conservapedia and the UN Migration Pact.[edit]


Am I correct in believing that Conservapedia is against the UN migration pact? Also, the first I have visited Conservapedia. Tinribmancer (talk) 14:46, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Given all the information I have on Conservapedia, they're against the UN entirely. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:50, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
They're using the same fear-mongering tactics as the nationalists in my country:

The pact allows for criminals to pose as job seekers and economic migrants.

No, It doesn't. You fucking dolts! Tinribmancer (talk) 14:58, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
you are on RW and this is your first encounter with cp? how times change. the de-conservapeding? of rw is complete. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:31, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
@RobSmith Care to explain the lies found in this article, Nobs? Oxyaena Harass 16:15, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Wassa problum? u havin trubel with reality again? nobsI'm all yea'res 19:02, 27 June 2019 (UTC)
@AMassiveGay I came over from the ISF (International Skpetics forum, formerly known as the JREF forums). Someone posted a link in the Truther section to a page over here back in 2016 and that how I got to know about RationalWiki. Tinribmancer (talk) 16:22, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
@Oxyaena That page has also 11 Breitbart references and one from Faux News... Tinribmancer (talk) 16:43, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
"Faux News" is a moronic snarl word which doesn't make any actual sense - /foʊ/ is nowhere near /fɒks/. Don't use it. Spriggina (parolo) (kontribuoj) @ 17:34, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
It's also being used over here. Plus, I'm not the only one on this site to have used it. Tinribmancer (talk) 17:45, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
its probs best avoided though. especially with no context. the folk here who I am aware use the term are not generally people who I would recommend you emulate. AMassiveGay (talk) 20:31, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
its come along way since the days of people referring to fox news as faux news. such innocent times. now its a term used by fox and their ilk to refer to actual news. I think we discussed here quite recently about right wing shit heads rebranding commonly used things AMassiveGay (talk) 20:35, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Fixed. Spriggina (parolo) (kontribuoj) @ 21:56, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
I saw faux and read fake. my mistake AMassiveGay (talk) 20:32, 25 June 2019 (UTC)

Why are people so open about their anti-Catholic bigotry?[edit]

Hey everyone. I have gone through so many phases and all, but it seems like I will be settling on Roman Catholicism and getting baptized as soon as I can. Anyways, I am sometimes appalled at how blatantly people love displaying bigotry against the Catholic faith. I am in no way minimizing any atrocities committed in the name of Catholicism, but this is not an excuse to be a bigot. Anyone else notice how people are so biased? I have heard people say that individual Catholics are culpable for merely being Catholics, or calls to ban Catholicism. Some stuff like that. Do you notice this? Any thoughts? Have a nice day Kingdamian1 (talk) 18:02, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Be careful not to equivocate on "anti-Catholic." Bigotry against a faith is not necessarily bigotry against people. One can hold no grudge against Catholics as people, but think something is wrong with an institution that allows Cardinal Pells to flourish while saying consensual homosexuality between adults is a sin. The same could be said for any religion.CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 18:18, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Personally I have no more animosity against individual Catholics than against individual (for example) Muslims. Each individual is responsible for their own acts.Hubert (talk) 18:38, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
So maybe it is just my confirmation bias? Who knows. People really do seem to despise us, for some reason! Kingdamian1 (talk) 18:52, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Seems like generally most of the Catholic hatred, at least in the Western World, is target at the systemic hypocrisy and criminal negligence of the Catholic Church. And that seems like fair game. -RipCityLiberal (talk) 19:05, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
im not aware of any particularly blatant anti Catholicism outside of northern Ireland. could the op elaborate? in the uk we burn effigies of a particular catholic every year on bonfire night, but I don't believe any catholics, or indeed anyone these days see as anything other than harmless fun, seeing as how far removed from the days of any real anti catholic sentiment. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:46, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
By and large in America, Catholicism as a whole isn't looked down upon for tribal reasons these days, and the vast majority of the criticism I hear is directed at institutions, policy, or the various scandals they have had. And of that, some of the stronger criticisms themselves get strongly criticized (see Sinead O'Connor, of whom America really needs to apologize to now, really). Other religious sects have it far worse here. The FBI classified 73 hate crimes in 2017 as "anti-Catholic" though so I guess there are a few dweebs out there who are prejudiced against Catholics. (You can definitely still occasionally find a bit of the ol' prejudice particularly among certain evangelical crowds, but I'm still a little surprised by that number.) Soundwave106 (talk) 20:01, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
There has been some pretty strong historical anti-Catholic sentiment, and I still know some people (mostly old folks) who harbor anti-Catholic sentiments, and then there's the usual Protestant/Catholic divide, but anti-Catholic bigotry is mostly a thing of the past nowadays. Oxyaena Harass 20:03, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
what are the roots of anti catholic sentiment in the US? historically speaking AMassiveGay (talk) 20:26, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
Well, it all goes back to anti-immigrant sentiment. Germans, Italians, and Irishmen were all likely to be Catholic, and so Catholicism by association got tarred with a negative brush because of that. Oxyaena Harass 21:51, 24 June 2019 (UTC)
It also probably has something to do with the fact that part of the English Reformation was an anti-Catholic sentiment. Until relatively recntly, IIRC, opposition to "papism" was part of the job description of English monarchs. RoninMacbeth (talk) 06:50, 26 June 2019 (UTC)
It went as far as to lead to the death of one monarch and the exile of another, so.... Oxyaena Harass 08:57, 26 June 2019 (UTC)

(reset)Protestants came here, Anglicans were deeply skeptical of the Catholic church. I know among the controversies of electing JFK, was a belief that he would be loyal to the Pope over the American people. -RipCityLiberal (talk) 21:45, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Anglicans being sceptical (i'm not really sure what that means here) - is that not just professional rivalry?
im fully aware of British history. its interesting though because there isn't any anti catholic sentiment in the UK outside of n. Ireland, whereas from the discussion here there appears to be in the us, but im still clueless on a what this looks like - there is a lack specific examples here.
that said criticism of the catholic church is not anti Catholicism. there is a lot of criticism in the news of the catholic church because there are a lot of issues with the catholic church, that are very much current and need addressing. I would wager this is the 'anti-catholicism' the op laments. why take the word of a known troll at face value here? especially when they haven't elaborated n their claim in any way AMassiveGay (talk) 10:55, 26 June 2019 (UTC)

There are various aspects: atheism, agnosticism, 'anti-organised-religion', being of a different faith, being anti-'Catholicism in general', and being anti-Catholic-hierarchy (abuse, not allowing women an organisational role (when there were ruling abbesses and female theorists in the past), and 'so much wealth, so little done for poor persons' (though as someone said - how much is the Vatican-as-a-building worth, and to whom could you sell it; substitute the royal palaces and the Crown Jewels for the British Royal family 'and otherwise as appropriate'). Anna Livia (talk) 17:25, 27 June 2019 (UTC)