RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive347

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Are we "Anti-Women"?[edit]

According to our Wikipedia page:

Both Yan et. al 2019 and Knoche et al., two articles about classifying a writer's biases via text analysis, asserted that Conservapedia was "conservative" and RationalWiki was "liberal". Examining RationalWiki, Conservapedia, and Wikipedia, Knoche found that Conservapedia associated white people with pleasant words, black people with unpleasant, Islam with unpleasant, and atheism with unpleasant. Both Conservapedia and Wikipedia associated Christianity with pleasant words. RationalWiki had no such significant associations. All three wikis, however, exhibited bias against women. Knoche notes that RationalWiki's "contents often include sarcasm and satire, posing special challenges to statistical analysis".

I don't know what the "bias against women" part means. Are there some parts of RW that happen to be pro-MGTOW or something?Jeh2ow Damn son! 15:21, 26 February 2020 (UTC)

I think it's less overt sexism and more a bias similar to Wikipedia's gender biasWikipedia. The issues discussed on "the other Wiki" article probably also apply on other Wiki platforms, including this one. Soundwave106 (talk) 15:42, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I question the methodology. "Examining RationalWiki, Conservapedia, and Wikipedia, Knoche found that Conservapedia associated white people with pleasant words, black people with unpleasant, Islam with unpleasant, and atheism with unpleasant. Both Conservapedia and Wikipedia associated Christianity with pleasant words. RationalWiki had no such significant associations." They seriously concluded we have no significant point of view on Christianity or atheism?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 16:39, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
There's always room for improvement, but I question their assumption we're no better than Conservapedia. Maybe the issue is obsolete, pre-2014 articles that need to be updated? Oxyaena Harass 17:33, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
It is simply wrong. Furthermore the actual articles are not visible from the WP link. there are only links to two abstracts. The first abstract does not mention RW. The second mentions RW but does not include the text quoted. Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:45, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
"The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as His father, in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter." That's the opening quote from our article on Christianity. I question these results. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 17:50, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
Unfortunately the research in question that probably contains this remark is pay-walled, so "who knows". It's clearly machine learning oriented analysis -- the term WEAT is included, so one can assume methodology is similar to articles like this. Machine learning sometimes can be wrong in rather spectacular ways and I too would question the training if Christianity at Rationalwiki is associated with "pleasant words". Soundwave106 (talk) 17:56, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
If their algorithm is so bad that they get our articles on religion so wrong (at least as far is it's summarized on the WP page) then I really don't think we need to have much concern about anything else it says.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 12:04, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
The only way to properly check is to go through articles mentioning women and see what kind of adjectives are used and the tone of the sentences. I'll do some of that later myself. The worst reaction we could have is to just deny and dismiss this claim. ShabiDOO 19:33, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I actually read this paper when it came out! I know what they mean. Our articles on female subjects are more likely to use physical attraction centered vocabulary (beautiful, ugly, hag, etc) and less likely to use intellectual centered language as compared to men. I think that's probably 100% true. And moreover we're more likely to do that than wikipedia, who does it a little, though the paper found us nowhere nearly as likely to do that as Conservapedia. At the time, I found that finding entirely in keeping my perception of our wiki. I think I even posted the paper for discussion to the saloon bar in the hopes we'd find and improve those problems, but I can't remember now. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:45, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
Interesting. How did they come to the conclusion that we have no particular view on Christianity and atheism?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:49, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I think their engine also used a collection of vocabulary that had positive and negative connotations. Worth noting the authors stress in the paper that all measures are relative. So they found Christianity coverage was positive compared to Islam. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:00, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
Yup, I remember that paper too. I remember in response I tried fixing up articles on women too, removing unnecessary references to their appearance. I'm not sure how prevalent it was, but I think we did have a problem on fixating a bit on that part. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 20:17, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
A lot of that is probably just the side effect of having more articles about things like Christian theology. -- (talk) 22:29, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I went through the articles which mention women the most. For example, sexism, misogyny and similar articles. They mention women dozens and dozens of times. Since its written in the context of women suffering or being described in negative ways the word women is sometimes accompanied by negative vocabulary. In so many cases this isn't a subconscious bias but the vocabulary needed to properly cover the topic. I looked at articles which mention women only a few times and I didn't really see any negative or overly descriptive terms. In other words I think most of it is because of necessity not bias. There could be examples out there, Ill try another day to see if I can find them. ShabiDOO 23:38, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
What does this have to do with what I wrote? -- (talk) 00:48, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
But you'd think having more articles on Christian theology would mean more criticisms of it. How come it's more positive? I like to see some comparisons being made. BTW that comment by Shabidoo was probably a response to mine and relevant to the topic here, so I don't see the problem? I'm not sure if you're looking in the right spots. It's not views on women as a whole that creates that bias, it's how we treat articles with a woman as a subject. E.g. Ann Coulter, image caption of her is a joke on her pose (her physical appearance), but it used to be "an unbiased horse source" and "straight from the horse's mouth" (which I changed to the latter) which I interpreted as an attack on her physical appearance and then I changed it to what it is now (see revision). And then the article on Tomi Lahren, has several content remarking on her appearance, though to be fair she's picked probably because for her appearance. There's Sarah Palin that used to contain a distasteful quote on her appearance, and the current quote has "nice-looking parrot". On a tangent, I also removed a fat-shaming insult too, so... --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 01:07, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
The notion that comments on women's appearance are always out of bounds is the theology of a religion I don't believe in. But when we're talking about women who trade on it, like Fox News bimbos or talking-head celebrities like Coulter, whatever that is should not get in the way of snark. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 04:41, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
Never said it was always out of bounds. Just need to be tactful, including treating fat subjects. Just that we should be mocking their intellect and arguments, prioritizing that, often just as how more often we do with men. I do think women that use their physical appearance as a component of their job (Fox News anchor women for instance) can have their appearance mentioned, but I still don't think we should just let it rip either. Finally, we should also include their profession too when needed (e.g. Woman is an author) as there's a blind spot there when describing women, not a problem just in this wiki but in Wikipedia too iirc. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 07:32, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
The difficulty I see is that many women who fall within the mission, from Fox news babes to woo lifestyle bloggers, trade on this as part of their business model. The way extreme and agenda-driven diets can make your hair fall out is a perennial source of scandal. OTOH, to avoid even a hint of scandal, I checked whether there might be a more flattering picture of Andrea Dworkin on Commons; nada. Here, comment would be cruel, even to a hatemonger. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 03:52, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
If it's not a reply to a given comment, it shouldn't go "underneath" it in indentation level. The point of all the indenting is to create threaded replies, like what I'm doing now. Everyone should read Wikipedia:Indentation. If you're not doing threading, there's no point to all the indenting. Just leave everything flat. -- (talk) 04:31, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Oops, that should be wp:Wikipedia:Indentation -- (talk) 04:32, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Just a vent about ITT Tech[edit]

So my brother went to ITT Tech after community college. He graduated and got a degree. Then ITT Tech is shut down for being a scam school. My brother now has a paper that costed over $1000 and hundreds of hours but is worth jack shit. My brother also has a rare condition called EOE so it's already hard for him to get a job. I just wish that some entity would've given him back the money and sent him to a college that's legitimate. RationalHindu (talk) 16:12, 26 February 2020 (UTC)

The good news is I know exactly who to blame, Betsy Devos to reversed cancellation of debt to fraudulent private universities, including, specifically, ITT tech. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:03, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I remember a few years ago when ITT Tech went under, there was a segment on the news that Mott Community College would accept students but not their credits. Mott Community College even stated the ITT Tech credits were not up to community college standards. Plenty of law suites from the entire fiasco. Side note, I thought you were referring to the article here. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 20:18, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
The beauty of the free market at work! -- (talk) 23:11, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
ALL HAIL THE FREE MARKET!!!! Oxyaena Harass 00:40, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
Vote for a con man, get a con job. #MAGA --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 00:50, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
This got long, I have a coworker who is still dealing with debt from ITT Tech. Basically, if a school is funding aggressive ads for enrollment but not offering certifications, it's a scam. DeVry University(IT focus), Maryville College (nursing focus, no certs), Arizona College (religious focus, no certs), Trump University (real estate focus, no certs). I went to Midland Lutheran College, which is now Midland University, because I guess they figured out Lutheran is a red flag that I didn't understand when I was 18. I got a full ride "Leadership" scholarship and I took college credit earned in HS with me for Reading, Composition, Biology, and Psychology. When the college cut all funding to the journalism department, I left with everyone else in the journalism department. Literally everyone, there were about 20 students and 3 very, very dedicated, very knowledgeable, very problematic journalism teachers, problematic because reporting on the college's money troubles was bad. The college rebranded as Midland University, as opposed to Midland Lutheran and now do billboards and bus benches. However, when I left, the credits I had through Midland did not count when I switched to the University of Nebraska. So I had to fight through the counseling process to not only get the paperwork to prove that I scored 4s and 5s on AP tests, that I had a 32 on the ACT, but it was difficult in that the credits did not transfer and Midland had not kept any records of why I was accepted or given a scholarship. I wound up being labeled as a freshman with 32 credit hours of electives, as like, a placeholder, and then nobody in admissions or counseling had time to work it out, and my paperwork that I submitted was always somewhere else, and I'm 19 years old and thinking when they tell me to check back later that's true. I dropped out after a year being told I had to retake Public Speaking (which I placed in state competitions in Student Congress and Duo Interp), basic biology, which I was able to nag my way into "Science of Food" as a chem point, it was the one hot ticket I got a crack at, and took Native American Studies as my ethnic studies class. Which was cool, because I had taken "Black Experience in America" at MLC and it was taught simultaneously by 3 white literature teachers. But still had to take bio 101, nailed World History, was set to take reading, writing 101s for the next semester. Nobody was allowed into the journalism program as a freshman, so I couldn't take anything that I actually learned from one school to the other before I proved all the things I had proved to MLC to get a scholarship in the first place. I stopped going to classes and failed at attendance grades, passed no problem at essay/test classes. The absolutely lucky thing was I got a full ride to MLC, so after I dropped out of UNO, I was able to pay just UNO back. But I learned almost nothing at UNO. And nobody told me credit transfer didn't work like it does in high school. I actually started a good credit score for myself by quitting college. But now I don't have a degree, and a decade later I'm so rusty on all the things that would have made a degree easy for me. This fucking world.
100% for free college, 100% for debt forgiveness, because I fucking worked my ass off to clear what little debt I had. Fuck these "grown ups" who think debt forgiveness is unfair to them if they paid for their kids' tuition. It was unfair to pay for your kids' college, feeling like you got a bad deal if college is suddenly free, yes, you did get a bad deal. That's the point. Your ethics are bad, your philosophy is bad. I took an ethics class at a school that cut funding to my major and I learned that much. Lucky me. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:24, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
That's such bullshit. I'd say most of the responsibility lies with the institution making suckers of people. But still a fair bit lies on the government for not regulating institutions. I mean its something completely and utterly non-controversial in just about every other country in the world. And part of the responsibility lies on the students not checking out in advance the credentials you'll receive (assuming this is possible) and what kind of jobs would accept you as a candidate without a recognized diploma or certificate) ShabiDOO 17:26, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
But but but personal responsibility! It's your fault you have debt! You should've research lol you gullible fool instead of having nanny government make decisions for you! Why the hell even have laws if personal responsibility is a reliable crutch for everything) We always get taught about doing research first but con jobs know this too likely and try to confuse and obfuscate too, such as advertising about misleading accreditation, alumnus, etc. We all fall for this crap every now and then, so the victim blaming mentality of "personal responsibility" and letting scammers go free gets on my nerves. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 19:39, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
I'm sorry lefty...there is such a thing as both regulating things and being a careful consumer. Yes...if they did everything by the law then, I agree they are assholes. But the people who fell for it are also turkeys. I got scammed like nuts for a 400€ phone bill because of a telecom offer. It was outrageous and the telephone company was mostly to blame but I still took responsibility for not investigating the details about rates. Being a sucker after signing a contract to do something vs. say, being a victim of a physical crime or robbery...is not the same thing. I would recommend NOT using "victim blaming" outside of violent crime or robbery. It is a different universe. ShabiDOO 21:21, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
We tell people to be careful consumers all the time, but con jobs are really manipulative. That you have to look at painful details of the rates shouldn't be your job, and there's no way you knew you had to take that step before following through with the offer. I know you have to be vigilant and not fall for scams, but too often those scams, even the more obvious ones, prey on the most vulnerable people such as desperate, sick, or paranoid people, and I don't feel like talking down on them when the attention should be directed at scammers in the first place. My sister one time got email-bombed for not really double checking a torrent's comments and she kept beating herself up over it and tried convincing herself that she's not stupid or gullible. I imagine it's not psychologically healthy to continue piling on people that already have confidence problems. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 21:30, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
I was not a careful consumer of higher education fresh out of high school. Okay, I can own that mantle. I think it's statistically likely I'm in, just, very good company. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 01:51, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Started a rudimentary article on the accreditation agency the certified ITT Tech[edit]

Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges & Schools

Could use a little help. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 18:04, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

@Rationalzombie94 Okay, we got a foothold... Can you believe that 'Reagan National University'? Holy shit. Honestly I suspect there's more there, with this Si Tanka University and how it all relates to that University of Northern Virginia. Honestly, I wonder what would happen if you started digging into the remaining 60 something schools they're still accrediting.--NavigatorBR(Talk) - 04:52, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Sue, you're shouting at tea[edit]

Rant begins:

Remember when conservatives smashed their coffee machines and set fire to their trainers because the manufacturers made an ad, or withdrew from advertising on somebody's show? Oh, how we laughed! Now we have evidence the left can be just as stupid. A few days ago a British conservative politician posted a picture of himself holding a pack of tea. Cue screaming outrage, from people who should know better. that they would now be boycotting this brand of tea, and mass abuse of the company's twitter account for somehow being part of it (even though they can't control who buys their tea or what they do with it). it's been going on since the weekend and it's fucking ridiculous.
Rant ends. Avida Dollarsher again 19:13, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
Toxic pitics create a toxic society. The same thing is happening in Spain. Thing is..the toxic politics usually comes from conservative parties with no scruples to lie and be nasty. But it can easily affect stupid liberal idiots as well. Cancel culture doesn't help things. I wonder if the line between cancel culture and political outrage is disappearing. ShabiDOO 19:31, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I took a look at the source you cited, and A: it seems to be a fairly obscure news site, and B: the only sources they cited are unnamed "people online." I'm tempted to dismiss this as typical tabloid trash. You Won't BELIEVE What Astronomers Found In This Neutron Star! - Number Four WILL Shock You! 20:13, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
It's been all over twitter all day. Are you trying to say it didn't happen? Avida Dollarsher again 21:26, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
I haven't seen a thing about it on Twitter. I'm suggesting it's being wildly overblown. You Won't BELIEVE What Astronomers Found In This Neutron Star! - Number Four WILL Shock You! 21:47, 26 February 2020 (UTC)

The story has been mentioned on BBC radio news too. As the light hearted story at the end of the bulletin, of course. But it did make it to the most mainstream of the mainstream British media. Spud (talk) 04:25, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

Politics aside, any praise for a brand's posts on social media should be treated with complete scorn and disrespect. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 21:48, 26 February 2020 (UTC)
Even talking about them, like talking about faux outrage on some brands, talking about the commercials in NFL, it's just publicity about them. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 21:54, 26 February 2020 (UTC)

oh my god who the hell cares.gif -- (talk) 00:51, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

Sure is great that politics online has now become a random lady named Sue being mocked by hundreds of thousands of people, and subsequently sent death threats from online nazis. This entire "liberals mad about tea" thing is a manufactroversy by conservatives wanting to prove their opponents are silly people and something something cancel culture and they're the real smart ones. Unrelated, but who the fuck drinks Yorkshire Tea? Out of all the teas you could drink? Minish (talk) 09:34, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
its britains most popular brand of tea, so probably lots of people. but its black tea. theres not really a whole lot of difference between brands. I go own brands personally, Sainsbury red label specifically. its only a pound AMassiveGay (talk) 00:57, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
And Sue has claimed[1] that her original tweet was tongue-in-cheek. Another case of sarcasm not working in 280 characters? --Annanoon (talk) 10:19, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
Liberal toxicity definitely exists but please use a more notable example next time, this was an !!!OUTRAGE!!! that seemed to consume the bubble of Twitter, but barely seemed to escape this bubble. (Maybe it's the US filter, but a Google News search of "Sue you're shouting at tea" only brings up four rather gossipy articles and a search of her Twitter ID only brought up a low commented article at still-existing Fark.com.) Twitter is basically a drama bullshit festival that makes me pine for the good ol' days of Livejournal outrage. Soundwave106 (talk) 13:39, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
We even have a Fark article! I hang out there sometimes, and it can have some good discussion. Yeah I know, only squares spend their Internet time on places not part of the corporate oligopoly, like some dumb "RationalWiki" place. (This comment is offered in levity. Not intended as an attack on anyone.) -- (talk) 04:40, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
I've actually been surprised that everyone has flocked to the corporate oligopoly given how shitty of a social media experience it honestly is. Although the snark was due to recent reactions I've seen in social media about Fark, I consider Fark (and much of the "older social web" that still exists, such as Metafilter or even SomethingAwful) better places than a lot of the typical Facebook/Reddit shitshows, and certainly better than the Twitter dumpster fire. (And let's not forget the descent of chan culture from the, say, the "edgy" sort-of-racist-but-this-ain't-no-Stormfront of, say, your Pool's Closed memes, towards the batshit insanity of QAnon -- chan culture has always been kind of icky, but seriously, what the fuck happened, did a fucking video game developer with two X chromosomes trigger your entire chan culture into the abyss?) And yes, this certainly reveals that I'm old, kids get off my Internet lawn, etc. Soundwave106 (talk) 13:51, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Wonder how many extra boxes of Yorkshire Tea were sold. Anna Livia (talk) 19:11, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Learned a valuable lesson today[edit]

Never have an intelligent conversion about linguistics and more specifically- constructed languages or ConLang in public.

Okay at a department store where the bank me and my family use, I was talking with the bank teller about constructed languages and ancient languages. Multiple people in line and passing by gave us strange looks as if we were stupid. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 02:27, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

Or put it another way, have intelligent conversations about languages and linguistics with other people who are interested in them any time, anywhere and don't give a stuff about nosey gits you don't know eavesdropping. I would hazard a guess that you threw in a few Esperanto words to show how that language works and that eavesdroppers thought you were speaking some gobbledygook that you made up. Well, that's their problem. And so what? I hope that the bank teller is going to take an interest in Esperanto as a result of what you said. And you never know, some of the eavesdroppers might too. Spud (talk)
Exactly, it's their problem. No one talks about Smash Bros. in public, a subject I openly talk to my sister about, and that's a much stupider subject compared to linguistics. Hell, I rather people talk about linguistics and that stuff more than the latest celery gossip, so to me, your conversation is a step above that, and I hope my opinion is valued more than theirs. 👌 --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 07:36, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
I'll talk about Smash or some other vidya in public. Why give a shit if other people not in your conversation disapprove of your conversation topic? Okay, I know some people can have issues with displays of disapproval from others. A therapist might be helpful with this. This is VERY EMPHATICALLY NOT an insult; there is nothing wrong with seeing therapists, although, again, some fuckheads might think so. Fuck mental health stigma. I have been to therapists. -- (talk) 04:45, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Fear not being judged by strangers for having interests. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:20, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
Conlanger for 50 years. Still know enough Esperanto to use it on telemarketers. This usually gets me sent to a Spanish desk, which doesn't help much more. Next time I will try Tengkolaku. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 04:00, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Combating Solipsism[edit]

So ever since reading about it I find it very hard to let go, mostly because we can’t disprove it. I keep telling myself that there is no evidence for it and that it can’t be proven but all that stays in my head is that I can’t rule it false so....

I tried to relate it to the god argument since I don’t activity behave as though any exist because there isn’t evidence for it, but no dice. I don’t know why it’s so hard to just drop this. It’s causing me to have a fearful detachment of everything around me for fear that it’s not real.Machina (talk) 21:55, 27 February 2020 (UTC)

In a sense it is 100% true. The only thing you can be 100% sure about...is that you exist (somehow). Whether that means your a human in an enormous universe or a computer simulation or the only thing that exists period with a hyper-active imagination etc. you can't know. But you can be entirely sure you exist in some form (even if it is a meaningless form). But I would argue that the likelihood of you being the only thing that exists at all (based on just about everything we know) is super tiny. Negligible. Just like the odds of God existing are like 0.000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001% (less actually) I'd say the same about you being the only thing that exists. It's an important part of philosophy to not use certainty unless it is absolute. However more analytical philosophers will treat something that is 99.9999999999999999999999999999999999999% likely as though it is a given...with the disclaimer that you cannot be absolutely certain. Ultimately worrying about being the only thing that exists would be like worrying about being hit by a meteorite twice. And even if you were the only thing that exists, none of that changes reality as you perceive it. It makes literally ZERO difference to you in any meaningful way because you don't have access to that information nor any idea what kind of environment you actually exist in (if it just happened to be something radically different from how it appears to us). If you still suffer from this kind of anxiety I'd highly recommend CBT. Philosophers cannot help much with severe philosophical angst. ShabiDOO 23:25, 27 February 2020 (UTC)
I have a mental pattern for you. "Wow, ikanreed is being a real asshole to my shitty posts today, am I that much of an asshole in my own imagination? No, I'm better than that." ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 00:41, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
I can only attempt to disrupt that pattern. ikanreed is pointing out something like "you can't have nightmares if you believe in yourself." In my experience, it is possible to survive a nightmare after a lot of dream experience. I practiced lucid dreaming for a while, I never teleported or anything. But the point is it isn't possible to wake up to an entirely different world from the one you've tried to sleep off. ikanreed will apparently always be an asshole. I like the guy, but if I'd have made him up in a dream, he would have said exactly that so I could roast him. It's my birthday, I have to pee, I'm known for constant edits, and I am not looking forward to tomorrow. Are you my inventor? Did you make all of me up? If so, kudos to the detail but fuck you, you could have tried harder. Solipsism is a take on personal existence, and it rounds out about as well as "something starts nothing." It's untenable as a model for the universe if you consider, with humility, your own limitations over personal coincidences. But it's a worthwhile starting point if you're not a sociopath*

Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:02, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Did you ever watch I (heart) Huckabees? It's a light-hearted take on existential dread, I still think you'd like it. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:15, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
"Today, a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration—that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively. There is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we're the imagination of ourselves. Here's Tom with the weather." In all seriousness, talking this kind of stuff over with a trusted person might be helpful. And, therapists can be helpful and there's nothing wrong with seeing one if you think it would benefit you. -- (talk) 05:17, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Solipsism is not falsifiable, so it's not worth too much time worrying about. The competing belief system of Last Thursdayism is also not falsifiable. So, if you're thinking too much about solipsism, you should instead think about ways of enjoying your life: go out into nature, or do something fun more often. It might help you put things in perspective. Bongolian (talk) 07:40, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

I’ve tried that but I fail into the same terror as before about “what if this isn’t real and it’s a lie”. The whole what if other people don’t really exist? Then any friendships or relationships I have at meaningless and illusory. It would all be meaningless if it’s all in my head. So I don’t do anything for fear that anything I part take in isn’t real.Machina (talk) 18:39, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

The way I deal with it is just not caring about meaning. I don't need meaning. My life is meaningless, my existence is meaningless, earth itself is meaningless, so what? I still exist, I'm still bound to my physical body, I still feel stuff, react to stuff and every living thing around me seems to do the same. Giving it meaning (or not) changes nothing IMO. 2804:431:C7F3:D7CF:7B9B:A949:9A72:5A7A (talk) 20:18, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Oh I don't know: others not being real might be a cool thing. What concerns you about the world not being "real"? Seriously, it doesn't seem like the worst problem to have, being the creator of ones own universe. I suppose it has occurred to you that none of us are that significant? Ariel31459 (talk) 20:48, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
One tactic might be to realize that there is no tangible difference between solipsism-world and non-solipsism world. In solipsism-world, you are unable to control reality any differently than in non-solipsism-world. It's true that your actions have effects in both worlds, but also in both worlds you cannot, for example, defy the laws of physics. Bongolian (talk) 21:19, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
If reason isn't working then CBT therapy. Will help with this anxiety and other anxieties. Plus other negative thought patterns. We could all use it. ShabiDOO 00:35, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
I personally would have never said a single thing since my last post on the topic. I think they are mean and stupid and insightful and helpful, but I am not going to go through each thing respectively, because I would rather treat it all as a birthday present, and I thank you all for expressing ways to not be solipsists. Solipsism is not a bad starting point. But I would have never expected or invented this, a landslide which absolutely bodies solipsism, were that I could invent a universe myself. You gotta listen to the people. Don't get me wrong, I am so bored and frustrated by the people I listen to. That's why I post here. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:51, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

I just wish that I could forget all of it really. Reading it has ruined me mentally and CBT didn't help in the slightest because I don't know if the therapist is real or not.Machina (talk) 05:08, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

That's mean. Nobody here tried to be mean to you. I don't think you're trying to be mean either, but that is mean. I can't hang out with you, like there's a psychical and practical limitation to that. Do you want to hang out? I've got a hike that I'm planning this month, but how the fuck you gonna get here? You are TOTALLY welcome, and if you want I can help you get here to just go walk with me and one of my friends in the woods for a couple hours. And I mean that, but I'm talking one day, a couple hours of walking. That is the plan insofar. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:03, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Going to one single CBT session (did you actually go to one?) is not going to give you instant results or immediate satisfaction. ShabiDOO 15:00, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
im sure that's a very kind invitation and all, but I cant help think you a lime pit waiting for them. that said going for a stroll even on ones own (preferably on my own in my case) is super therapeutic. a brisk hour long stroll, aside from the physical benefits of exercise in general, is known to reduce depression and anxiety, and generally improve mood. walking has the benefit of being a piss of piece that anyone can do (unless you are a physical wreck) as well as, when compared to other forms of exercise, like the gym say, you don't need to be super motivated to get going.
get out of your own head. change the scenery. take routes you don't usually or never take. my personal fav (dependant on how 'safe' the area you live in is) go for a stroll in the middle of the night. London seems like a different place early morning, devoid of crowds and near silent. slap some tunes on your Walkman, or just take in the sounds of the world where you live. observe strangers going about their business, with different worries, the same worries. with solitary lives, lives filled with friends and family, hardships, joys, hopes and fears, lifestyles, backgrounds, prejudices. an infinity of possible lives can be lived by the passengers of a car flashing past, but unknowable to you as they are gone in an instant. snippets of overheard conversations of the people you walk past can reveal trajedy and triumph, just a glimpse into the life of an otherwise faceless stranger, never to encounter them again, but they disappear from your world with a flash of humanity. look at the buildings, see their beauty, their ugliness, the faults, their wear and tear, how they customised, see how each is unique if only in the smallest of ways, even in the most blandest of suburbias. identikit houses and zoning laws can make a neighbourhood seem so uniform, with no obvious landmarks, vistors can lose their barings. but the locals don't forget where they live, familiarity lets them see all kinds of differences they always know where they are.
at a distance, people are faceless automatons, indiscernible from one another. its easy to not think of them as people, with no connection to them. at a distance, the houses in a street are all the same, each street the same as the next, the sterile uniformity can give things an unreal feel in suburbia.
but get in close, we can see people of different ages, sexes, races, heights, weights, all the many physical differences, and we are less able to dismiss them as an homogenous mass. get even closer, talk to them, listen to them, and every person is different, the more of their lives you can see the easier it is see their humanity, the harder to dismiss as being unreal. you walk past dozens of identikit houses in a street. they mean nothing to you. they are not really houses. visit one. knock on the door. see its residents, smell the home cooking, see the worn sofa, circulars on the door mat, you can hear music being played, a child crying. its no longer a façade of housing, its a home, lived in with people, a family, with all their own unique hopes and fears. suddenly that house stands out to you, the street has become more memorable, all little bit more real, harder to dismiss.
the more disconnected we are from the world, from people, the shallower our understanding of things, the less thought we give things outside of our head, the more we are dismissive of those around us. people become all the same. you are not like them. you don't think like them. do they even think? you are far too disconnected form things to be able to trust anything but the most shallow observations. they get the same bus every day, for a nine to five job, same bus back everyday. they are robots, you can pay them no mind. is everyone a robot? they bleed so not robots, computer program maybe. that's it. you can only trust your mind is real.
it must be very lonely to think like this. compounding the disconnection. why get to know anyone a little better if they are not real? you can dismiss all advice from outside of yourself, as its only your own mind that you can trust.
go outside. go for a walk. open your eyes and ears. see the world, or at least look at it more closely than normally do. not for anything in a particular. just see what you can see. draw no conclusions. smile at people. say hello. tip your hat. acknowledge other people. buy a paper and talk to the paper seller about that weather/sports/local thing. ask how the kids are. they are more than a paper seller. he may have a different view point to you. he might tell you something new. the world might be a little more real. might take abit more engagement to feel a whole lot more real. more work to feel connected to people and the world, that even people and things your are not interested in or need to give any thought are just as valid and real as yourself.
and the thing is, the more engaged, the more connected you are the world at large, you wont care if it is real or not. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:44, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I do take exception to the lime pit idea, but I think I get what you mean. I do not agree that going out on your own for a hike is the same as going out for a hike with a friend. There is so much to take in on a good nature hike, and so much to take care of in order to make it a small adventure. Especially running into other hikers, personally, that takes a toll on me and I have to spend time getting over it once it's done. I can't just tip my hat, I can't just start a conversation, the effort it takes for me to be on my own and do that is detrimental. But with a friend I can do tipping of the hat more easily for some reason, I do a lot of path-planning and looking around once I'm on that path, I'm less prone to simply routing my trip and achieving the route to avoid as much anxiety as possible. I have friends who just want to start walking and see where we get, which works well, because I can path-plan back different routes based on mileage, slope, and time we want to get back. Going with a friend, I get to look around a lot more. Last time, at a park I hadn't been to before, I wound up being the spider-web spotter. Had two guys walk directly into spiderwebs so many times that I just took the lead and stopped them to duck under the ten million spiderwebs that had been put up. The first few we looked at instead of walking into were beautiful, the rest were just hazards of the less-traveled forest path we wound up on. We got everyone back on time with an incredible high plains grass/flower diversion that we had to hike a few, what felt like 60 degree slopes to get to, it was like two different planets and then it was all downhill home. Good hike. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:48, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
I listened to the radio on my way home, and as serendipity would have hit, a guy today who wrote "The Adventurer's Son" talked about his son [2], who died exploring Costa Rica. And I do get a bit of the difference, and I'd like to share a little bit. I went hiking with four friends in Yellowstone, we got stoned, lead took us off the trail by accident. We agreed that the best bet was to bee-line to the lake and then walk along the lakeside for a little bit, then we could bee-line back to the trail and hopefully spot it. We wound up walking through a blueberry patch. I scooped some as we were walking and ate them. The lead turned around and said "I think we should have hit the path by now" and I said "I think we've got a little bit further" and he was so focused on spotting the path that he said "You've got something in your teeth." I said "Oh, it's probably a blueberry seed." "Where did you get blueberries?" "Everywhere. They're all around you." I took the lead and he picked a bunch of blueberries and we got back on the trail.
We got absolutely shithoused at the campsite, and one of my friends, in the middle of the night, woke up to pee. As you do. He disappeared for like 40 minutes, I stayed quiet because I didn't want to wake up the other friend with a concern. The next day, she said she woke up too and did the same thing, not wanting to make we up. As we were hiking out, we saw bear tracks, like everywhere. When we found our next campsite trailhead, there was a bulletin that said our specific campsite was a bear-frequented area. I said "I am totally down for this, but if anybody in the group is not comfortable with it, we have to call this hike off." The girls called the hike off, and nobody was mad.
I went camping solo and a storm came rolling in. High winds, and the only campsite that was left was cliffside. I wanted to do it, but the winds were pretty bad. But I set up, built a fire, cooked my dinner, and then shut down camp and went home over weather. I still did all the things, got stalked by a bobcat, accidentally woke up a buck, but went home and slept in a house instead of potentially holding my tent down.
So what's the point, the point is adventure gets you out of that "I probably made it all up" kind of mindset. But that adventure is really tough to take on unless you've got friends who already do those adventures. Because for a lot of people, it's absolutely more fulfilling to say "Look at that!" to a person they trust isn't going to blow them off over it. It's lonely to say "Look at that!" to yourself. And what's more is smart people are less likely to laugh at jokes, because they usually already get them. I think Machina is a very smart person, and that's a tough place to land. I think you are a smart person too, but you are being prescriptive and not generous.
I upset everyone once, I drank two bottles of wine and some liquor before a midnight hike at Indian Caves to the mass grave site, and I just started running. I don't know why I started running, but when everyone caught up to the destination, I was a real jerk, and my only explanation was "You can just feel the trail." We walked back to the campsite and due to my direct actions, a friend of mine was cut badly on the thumb by an exploding glass bottle. A cork might pop out of a bottle put in a fire, but the glass gets weaker too. I promised those guys I'd try to be less dumb. It was a formative moment.Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:23, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

The advice for going for a walk profoundly fails as all I am reminded about the entire time is whether or not things around me real or not. Exercise does nothing for depression or anxiety for me, as I went to the gym for over a year but my mood and anxiety was the same as when I started so that research is bunk. I can't connect with anyone or anything on my walks or day to day because, again, I am tormented by the nagging feeling that I don't know for sure whether or not they are real. The more I engage the worse it gets, so your advice is actually damaging not helpful.Machina (talk) 07:48, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

Look, that's a hard place to be, but it's nagging because it's hard to disprove, and falsifying is difficult. The last time I ate mushrooms, I got trapped in my own pants on my bathroom floor, honestly came to the conclusion I was dead and in hell, eventually broke free, pieced the experience back together with a roommate. The last time I ate acid, I lived by myself, so before I took off, I cleaned my entire apartment top to bottom first, got wasted, ate the acid right before passing out at my normal bedtime, slept for just a little bit, woke up wasted, climbed into my closet under a blanket for at least an hour, took a shower, listened to the radio while I beat the story modes to my favorite fighting games, played VR games when "Live from Here" came on, then finally cooled down in time to go get some food at like, 9 pm. During the shower, especially, the time dilation was nuts. During the games, the music felt like something I could translate into how I was playing. You've posted a link to a psychedelics-forward forum, it's cool to dive in, not worried about your brain. Microdosing isn't my bag. I did have a come-down where I felt like I skipped a dimension to land in my own body. Instead of finding more mushrooms, instead of saying mushrooms are stupid, I learned from that experience and had one bomb ass Saturday on acid, just for me, just for myself. I didn't have to correct my behavior, I could get as weird as I wanted. There are nutso bonkers cases where psychedelics help. For me, in the end, I've never had a reformative experience on psychedelics, I've had good trips and bad trips, and my best trip was just getting psyched out of my mind and having fun with a hard-earned and carefully created environment, one with no responsibilities and no interruptions for the next 24 hours. I didn't crash into any new existence, like it kind of felt like when I got my first breath of not-anxiety during some of the other trips, I just had a few altered looks at my same existence. Are you experimenting with mushrooms? I don't think you need to answer that explicitly, but I, for one, have experimented with psychedelics, and haven't looked for them again after I got it right the once, on my own. A lot of pop culture think-pieces are highlighting it, and do not get me wrong, I think if there is time for it, it is worth it, but not above all else, and every drug affects people differently. Like, I naturally don't get headaches, so I have to be careful with alcohol. I can't smoke marijuana, I get anxious and lose my appetite. I can be very drunk and people don't know it, I can still be pretty drunk in the morning and I won't know it. I only found this out after I got in trouble and bought a breathalyzer. Now I try to spend 16 hours a day dead-ass 0%BAC sober. I've woken up feeling great at 0.00%, 0.06% 0.15%, you name it. Will say, on psychedelics, my first instinct is to get a little frustrated that I don't want a drink, and I get it for habit breaking. But again, I can't microdose, I have to eat everything I've got. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:35, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

What nags me the most about it is that there is no evidence in either direction, just probability. The probability that everything is a projection of my mind is incredibly small, but that still not a definite "no". But there is no proof that it's true either so you are stuck in an "i don't know".Machina (talk) 20:39, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

I'm gonna be pretty pissed, to be honest, if you really dig in on "There's no evidence you're sentient". Solipism comes from disregarding the evidence as insufficient in favor of a position that genuinely is unevidence and is entirely hypothetical. I'm sitting fucking here, using my giant-ass(for a monkey) brain to consider the fucking words you've put here and make this reply. You could look at a machine that scans my brain and find correspondance between the anger I'm telling you I'm experiencing and have the exact same kinds of data as if you scanned your own brain when you're angry. "No evidence." Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck youuuuuuuuuu. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 21:47, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
I totally agree with ikanreed. Fuck you, you're not a variable in my hike plan anymore because you're obviously not willing to challenge your own point of view. You asked the question, and I have to repeat this, because you clearly don't get it, YOU ASKED THE QUESTION. You could have researched it, you could have engaged the responses, there is a really bad axiom that says "there are no stupid questions." You're fucking telling me that I looked at different parks, trails, basically did not plan something very complicated and very important to me because I bought into your idea that you actually had a question about Solipsism, and that walking in nature on your own was too much for you, like it sometimes is for me. I 100% accept that lost time as my own time, doing something I like to do. But I'm frustrated, I could have solidified plans a little faster, which would have helped other people. You don't allow yourself to be wrong about things. If you want Solipsism, you can have it. I guess nobody is able to disprove it, but at least stop asking us questions about it if your answer is just "But that's not how it works in my head." Well, if it doesn't work that way in your head, you done fucked up your own job of creating everyone else's heads, and being lonely is static, immutable. Get some fucking Nihilism in there, my guy, you're missing out.
I don't want to be too mean, because depression sucks, and if you have it it's part of a chemical process, and Solipsism is not the way. Getting Solipsism, understanding it, is important. The above is a point I made, and I went through my shit, and one more day isn't going to hurt. Fuck you, hit me back quick if you want to go on a hike, but you can't be all "I made this scenario up, to I don't know, torture myself and others" about it, that's so dismissive of everyone else's experience and you've already pissed me off. Have you ever tried lucid dreaming? I just have no clue what you're asking for, don't you have dreams where the physical rules of the universe don't apply? Then you wake up and the physical rules apply the same way that they always did? You sound like you're upset about Solipsism and want to be less alone, that's fair and reasonable. Did you come up with Solipsism? Or are you just clutching to Solipsism to explain why you liked Solipsism in the first place? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:05, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
It's going to get warm, I bet the summer will be dry, hikes are going to get easy. Sorry, Machina, for putting you on the spot, you're not on my next hike. Let me know any time you want to go and I'll make it happen. That's me being generous, not you being somehow off the hook. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:47, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
I've thought about it, and lucid dreaming is probably what you, Machina, can do to combat solipsism. This means that for a while, your best use of your free time is going to be sleeping. It's not just pop-sci garbage, going into a sleep intentionally while your brain is active can be wild, and can give some insights about what the brain does when left to its own world-building. I don't wake up from nightmares anymore, I dream through them. Being unable to move correctly or navigate streets is an indicator that I'm dreaming. Sometimes I get just a few seconds of lucidity, but that's all it takes to turn a nightmare back into a normal dream. You can have really good intuition for how people you know behave, but you'll notice that your dream world is actually different from the real world. Both contain your experiences, solipsism can explain your dream world, but it can't affect your waking world. You need to do more experimentation, if you want to combat solipsism. Even if it doesn't convince you, the time I took practicing lucid dreaming years ago is still a benefit. I can sleep through nightmares, I can remember my dreams more easily, which means I can tell the difference between funny ones and boring ones if I want to say "I had the strangest dream," I can feel like I got an extra 20 minutes of dream time in a single 5 minute snooze session with my alarm, I can't explain why or how, but it happens. It's only a problem when I dream about work in those 5 minutes, like, what a waste, work dreams should be considered paid leave. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 22:02, 8 March 2020 (UTC)

myth of private sector more efficient or somehow better than public sector[edit]

where does this come from? its been very much government policy for far too long, despite all evidence to the contrary, but I only here as a mantra with no reference to who came up it. AMassiveGay (talk) 01:04, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

The core idea comes from neoclassical economics. Namely that markets punish actors who are wasteful with needing higher prices than their competitors, which drives down profit, eventually driving them out of business. Works in theory, not in practice, where the number of factors controlling any given purchasing decision are far too great to reduce to "X is more expensive than Y, so Y is better". All the math economists have come up with to bridge that gap frankly suck. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 01:57, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
@Ikanreed There's also the assumption that competition in a capitalist economy is driven by the desire to please the customers in order to stay in business and not say... The desire to obtain a monopoly and crush all rival corporations thus establishing an easy source of income with no real threats to it... ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:23, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
The dumb assumption that private sector must 'pull itself up by the boot straps' and turn a profit, and thus must be efficient and able sustain itself. That's why The Scum is shutting down next week after it lost £68m in 2019.--NavigatorBR(Talk) - 04:58, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Ah, but aksually monopolies only exist because of government, and the solution to any monopoly is less government! Checkmate libs! -- (talk) 05:29, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Not to mention a whole boatload of implicit assumptions that are usually smuggled in alongside when such an idea is invoked in a political discussion. Serving a potential customer can be unprofitable, so a private enterprise seeking to maximize profit will just not serve them. Not a big deal when we're talking about smartphones, should be when we're talking about something like public utilities or life-saving treatments. A lot of people privately don't care if other people suffer or die as a result as long as it doesn't affect them, because they probably deserved it anyway, though they often have enough self-awareness to not say this out loud in public and instead put out other arguments that seem plausible at first glance, like "personal responsibility" and "freedom". -- (talk) 05:27, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Yes. It also is a bait and switch argument based on the fact of the great success of the private sector at generating wealth for itself. Unfortunately it only can work when businesses are not constrained by the need to provide a given service to everyone. Take privatized fire departments, for example. Letting a home burn because the owner failed to pay a $75 fee seems a little harsh. I'm not so sure that the conservatives who want to privatize public services are not just looking for a corrupt outlet for payoffs. Ariel31459 (talk) 05:35, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
How will people learn to not have their houses burn down if we don't let them suffer the consequences? No one would put out fires if there was no way to profit from doing so. Are you suggesting that Marcus Licinius CrassusWikipedia was anything other than a noble Job Creator™? -- (talk) 06:06, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Can't help but feel like a nice gold drink should be the fate of a bunch of the rich arseholes around nowadays. McUrist (talk) 08:53, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Well, one other difference a lot of people notice – in private sector organisations, it is usually easier to fire people than in the public sector. That ability can be used both for good and evil. On the evil side, it makes it easier to unfairly let people go, to heavily cut essential staff (but worsen service), discriminate, oppress labour activism, etc. On the good side, if you've ever worked in the public sector, you've probably encountered those employees who are lazy and terrible at their jobs but it is too hard to get rid of them. One place I once worked, there was this employee who claimed he was too stressed to work, and so he'd been off work for 18 months – he was still getting fully paid though – we had infinite paid sick leave – and everyone knew he'd started doing consulting work on the side despite being "too stressed" for his main job, yet management was powerless to do anything about it – eventually, management forced him into taking a voluntary redundancy (his payout was over 52 weeks salary). (This guy wasn't some senior executive or anything, just a lowly Unix system administrator.) DepressedAustralian (talk) 16:24, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

This is the major argument where I live. People rarely say "private is more efficient than public", they solely focus on the argument that public sector employees are virtually unfireable, and because of that, overtime they become more and more lazy and stop respecting customers. It is true to an extent, but the solution "privatize everything!!" does not follow from the premise. Making it easier to fire public sector employees would be the solution, but that opens the door to political exploitation of employees (do what the Secretary wants or you are fired kind of thing). 2804:431:C7F3:D7CF:7B9B:A949:9A72:5A7A (talk) 20:24, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
The world is always going to have people who are less good at things than others, and less motivated than others. They also need to eat and have a roof over their heads. This is one of the basic problems of capitalism, at least as it is practiced today. We need effective disincentives for innovation, productivity, and disruption. We need to stop the ratchet that only gets tighter. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 20:32, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

Economics 101: The private sector is good at supplying some things, but it's bad at others. Generally speaking, if something is excludable and lacks large externalities, and a market for it can operate in such a way that both buyers and sellers have reasonably good information and the ability to decline offers in favor of competitors, then the profit-seeking motivation of suppliers will probably make the private sector better at supplying it than even an earnest and well-funded government effort. Consider a typical supermarket in the first world for something that puts all government efforts to shame. Obvious examples like this, where a capitalistic private sector produces material wellbeing unheard of in other economic systems, have led to fans who like to think that it's a solution to every economic problem, in an almost Platonic idealism. For another example we're all using now, consider computers. Government research established a lot of the basic science and technology underlying modern computers and their uses (basic research has large positive externalities, meaning that the private sector won't allocate anywhere near a socially-optimal amount of funding for it), but the private sector is responsible for things like putting computers in every home, producing phones that are basically tricorders with more processing power than all of NASA when it landed men on the moon, and driving enormous applied nanotechnology research as exponential improvement became the standard by which hardware companies compete for hundreds of billions of dollars. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 10:39, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

But the public sector is in charge of providing the power, and the public sector relies on it. NASA is looking after probes that run on decades-old technology. Which is actually cool, unless we stop giving NASA the ability to fire our current technology to lofty goals. But the lean towards privatization, which isn't exactly libertarianism but unfettered capitalism, which some libertarians and most sovereign citizens adhere to doesn't take place, ideologically, in the labor market. Go buy your slaves, and pay them poorly, see if they stick around. If they do, maybe your waste is your labor, and can't be solved by your labor. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 02:53, 11 March 2020 (UTC)

Education scandal in the Trump Administration[edit]


Betsy DeVos is under pressure after it was revealed that the ACICS accreditation agency that she allowed to certify schools accredited "Reagan National University". Pretty sure that several of you are aware but the Department of Education stated that they are "investigating" the issue. Yet another controversy before Trump's term is over. Talk about a dark era in education. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 02:48, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

There go those libs again, still obsessed with attacking our Lord and Savior Ronald Reagan (tax cuts be upon him)! -- (talk) 05:32, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
Thanks for creating the ACICS page, Rationalzombie94! Bongolian (talk) 07:35, 28 February 2020 (UTC)
@Rationalzombie94 Good to see that our resident diploma mill/pseudoeducation scout remains vigilant. And yet another sign that, somewhat shielded from media coverage by the constant antics of Trump, his cabinet has ramped up the longstanding GOP war on a well-functioning public sector, able to deliver services to ordinary citizens. DeVos is truly a scourge whose vandalism will have effects likely to ripple into the future, similar to the vandalism against the EPA. ScepticWombat (talk) 05:05, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
As for exchange students from other countries, the United States may not be the best option for a while. Even as an American if I could, I would go to a school overseas. Sad era for US education. Does not make me very happy. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 17:03, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

Troll barf[edit]

Do many anti-vaxxers actually argue that vaccines don't work? We mostly talk about their argument that vaccines have debilitating side effects, not that vaccines don't perform their intended function. I don't think I've never encountered an anti-vaxxer trying to explicitly argue the latter. 2600:1002:B123:6FC4:CD2:EE1A:3105:B4CD (talk) 22:31, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

They do argue that vaccines don't work. In fact, there are strains of anti-vaxxers that argue that sanitation eradicated diseases rather than vaccines, usually confusing between morbidity and mortality rates in the process. Others argue that vaccinated people "shed" their disease and can spread disease that way. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 00:52, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
The "shedding" thing is based on a grain of truth. Live vaccines can cause some to "shed" the infectious agent, and it is sometimes possible to infect others, though of course it'll be with the weakened strain. A live vaccine induces an actual infection, just with a weakened pathogen. This notably happens with the oral polio vaccine,Wikipedia which is why it's no longer used in places where polio isn't endemic. Of course anti-vaxxers blow this up into all kinds of nonsense, like saying the "natural" disease is mostly harmless but the vaccine form is an evil mutant bioweapon, or claiming this happens with all vaccines, not just live ones. -- (talk) 02:50, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
Oh hell yes they do. You are right that it's more common to see them talk about INJECTING POISON INTO YOUR BABIES because this is an appeal to emotion. The point is to grab the attention of people who aren't knowledgeable on the subject and trigger a panic response. "Oh no, am I poisoning myself/my child?" The rational, measured response to such an argument is to ask: What are these "poisons"? What is the dosage? What are the effects? How does getting the vaccine compare to not getting the vaccine? But scare stuff is intended to bypass critical thinking and trigger the instinctual "system 1" thinking. (See wp:Thinking, Fast and Slow.) Then once you rope 'em in and get them scared and listening to you they'll be more willing to accept the germ theory denial, conspiracy stuff, magical cures, etc., whereas if you put those up front they might just ignore them as "crazy". This is a type of milk before meat strategy. So for one example of "vaccines don't work": Henry G. Bieler,Wikipedia drugs are poison, all disease is caused by "toxins" from eating the wrong foods. His books are still in print and I've seen cranks cite them as well as the general idea that disease is all caused by diet. -- (talk) 02:50, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

Incel Rebellion: Laughable at best[edit]

Incels or those who get turned down by women for being creepy nuts have got to be a pathetic joke. For those who do not know, these guys blame women for not consenting to sex with them and guys who deny them the opportunity. Basically whack job extremists who blame everyone and everything for their own problems.

Now these incels who act like victims claim that they will launch a revolt against women and guys who cock block them. I have to laugh at how ridiculous and far fetched their rebellion is. How can you blame other guys who are probably decent human beings for your inability to get into a sexual relationship? Their idiocy is Alex Jones level conspiracy nonsense.

Even watching one video made by an incel, the dude who made the video had the vibe of a stalker. Blaming innocent people for your problems is nuts. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 03:50, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

They're pretty pathetic on their own, but they're terrifying. I'm their target. They've claimed female victims. I know why I don't hang out with them nor do I really want to talk to them, it's obvious, but not obvious to them. I think it's easy to affix your problems on a face rather than reflect on yourself and admit something you're doing is wrong. That being said, I don't think all sexually frustrated people project their anger on others or that there's something inherently wrong with them. In fact, the original term "incel" was coined to refer to those kind of people and the label was a means of discussing frustrations, but that sort of thing just seemed to have progressed to "let's hate women" gang. I think some of them genuinely can't find someone to be with because life sucks sometimes, circumstances are terrible, or they just don't have energy or resources to commit. Don't know how popular dating apps are, I'm not interested in those and I have no idea what sexual frustration's really like since I don't have a sex drive. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 04:46, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
I see incels as a symptom of male entitlement that pervades many of our cultures. How often have you seen movies where the male protagonist chases after a woman and eventually gets her in the end through sheer persistence, as if her interest in him is his birthright? Or the double standard regarding the value of losing one's virginity? The article I read about how the benefits of marriage are skewed in favour of the man, to the point that the man's life expectancy goes up while the woman's goes down was also an eye-opener. There's always been this unsettling power imbalance in traditional depictions of relationships that makes me uncomfortable, even before considering I'm ace as well. Colossal Squid (talk) 06:44, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
For the double standard of virgin, it's female virgin good, male virgin bad, right? I one time thought being a virgin was a good thing probably because I had no metric of it for a really long time and saw it being mentioned in the Bible regarding how "fresh" virgin women are. It's only a few years where I saw it being used as an insult toward men. The double standard illustrates that women are prizes, something you win, and you win before it's claimed by others. That thing disgusts me, that having a relationship is reduced to acting like you won something rather than commitment that comes with rewards for both people but also requires effort to maintain. I think part of the reason I'm ace, or at least what made me identify as ace is just how treasured sex is, to the point it can be toxic to not just asexuals but also to frustrated single peoole, and how it seems like it's so reductive compared to other more meaningful aspects of a relationship such as sharing life skills, experiences, perspectives. The way sex is depicted in movies, a lot of times, it just looks like it can be skipped and nothing changes. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 09:58, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

Isn't it fucking faur to be so comfortable. I have been felt up by men and wonen. I'm confident that I'm a heterosexual, I'm not confident of that because I had never had homosexual experiences. Naing said, my masculinity is a little strange. I've had my dick grabbed by a girl in a club setting. I didn't feel unsafe, had my dick grabbed by a dude, found a way to but out of there. either time, but fuck your drunk ass, I demand romance. The incel crowd is a little broad. it sounds like "If I have to suffer, everyone must suffer" and that's not a good ideology. Girls don't like it any more than boys do, straight men. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:26, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

Women suffer the same problem (especially because of the disparity between available men and available women) but they don't create user groups to self pity and blame their problems or bad-luck on everyone else. Of course, they likely haven't been fed the delusion that they are entitled to sex yet I'm sure both genders suffer equally. Incel community is broad. No doubt some of them are incels because they expect to score with a tiny percentage of women who are their "perfect" fantasy woman. Meaning you have tons of guys searching for a few. Or those guys who are just creepy and repel women. Then there are the guys with zero social skills who refuse to or don't even think about various therapies that can help build confidence and social skills. And then there is simply math...even if your "type" is broad (say 10% of available potential partners) you may simply luck out in never coming across a potential partner who is compatible at the right time. Then there are those who get a few dates but it doesn't work out (for a huge number of reasons not necessarily anyone's fault). And then there is the porn effect giving guys the idea that quick degenerate demeaning objectifying sex is a given and comes quickly. I wouldn't call all incels babies, just those who blame others for their situation. ShabiDOO 12:16, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
I guess that the incel crowd fails to realize that there are gay women who do not want men and plenty of gay men who have zero plans to cock block incels. The incel crowd is doing their own cock blocking. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 17:03, 29 February 2020 (UTC)
I wonder about the incel concept and whether it is a meme that mentally-disturbed young white males have fixated upon. Here is a page of photos , mostly of incels. Their appearances seem very average, some above average in attractiveness. Yet they claim they do not attract women because of their looks, which suggests a break from reality. Mass murderers are misogynists, as a rule, though most of them are not incels. Ariel31459 (talk) 23:05, 1 March 2020 (UTC)
Negative gender stereotypes aren't just for women, there's plenty of the incel community that is basically one negative male gender stereotype after another: over-emphasis on sex as a means to an end, bad male body image stereotypes, etc. I think the "forever alone" meme went around the women-dominated Tumblr social community (in addition to other more male-dominated social media like Reddit) and I've seen single women on Facebook go into occasional over-generalized rants or feel depressed about their single-hood, so it's not like the other sex isn't immune from self-pity, depression, or painting "sex wars" in broad strokes. A quick look at R9K seemed to reveal more depressing self-loathing than over-generalized rants about women or other stereotypes anyways (although that certainly existed in large quantity). The difference I guess is that a few of the males will resort to notoriously violent means. Soundwave106 (talk) 20:24, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
The offsite place /r/incels fled to, incels.co has daily threads of posting pictures of women who suffered domestic violence and mocking them. Daily. A few males "resorting" to violence is a paper thin cover over a huge ideologically committed community that actively encourages and promotes violence. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:47, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
It must be hard gathering information to come to that conclusion, huh. I think those sites are just digital self-harm, people that revel in negativity since they have no idea how to process it or don't even realize how messed up they are, with others validating their awful viewpoints. All this culminates in them taking out their anger on women. Why do sites like incels.co even exist, I don't know. The mantra that we have to contain terrible stuff or else it'll spread, I question that. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 21:10, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I assumed 4chan would be the worst out there and I was clearly mistaken. Incels.co has a lot of the self-loathing of r9k but with 8chan /pol/ levels of unhinged anger (replacing /pol/'s ethnic hatred with women hatred, of course). Digital self harm, for sure. Soundwave106 (talk) 22:48, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
All that self-loathing doesn't seem to come with a humility check though. They're really confident in what they believe in, that women are the cause of their problems. When I practiced self-harm years ago, I did it out of blaming myself for my standing, I had no confidence in my own beliefs beyond that, and communicating my hurt that words didn't seem to do. I guess self-harm's not always a result of beating yourself up for circumstances beyond your control. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:53, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
if these sites did not exist, their hatred would most likely be directed inward. but power of the internet to bring marginalised people together not always a good thing if the solidarity of like minded people creates an identity based on self loathing, despair, and worthlessness. rather than seek to better themselves, they revel in their misery. rationalise it. refocus their rage, no doubt influenced by men rights folk, alt righters, anti feminists. but it is an impotent rage. there is no plan for going forward. there are no circumstances for any kind of victory. real world violence they have inspired is lionised because its the only time we ever think of them as anything other than a joke. AMassiveGay (talk) 01:40, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

I remember, back in the late 90s / early 2000s, reading about the concept of "involuntary celibacy". At the time I identified with it somewhat, since at that stage I hadn't managed to have any sexual success (something which would later change – nowadays I'm married wth two kids). Interestingly, the term "involuntary celibacy" was actually first popularised by a woman (Alana), and was meant as a term open to people of any gender or sexual orientation. And then, at some point, it got shortened to "incel", and almost all the women left, and it turned into what it is now. But still, I have a lot of sympathy for Alana's original vision – of providing empathy and support to the romantically unsuccessful – as opposed to what it evolved into. DepressedAustralian (talk) 11:48, 9 March 2020 (UTC)

Life update for anyone whomst cares[edit]

Hey guys. A lil while ago I posted some sad shit about my life on here and some people were very supportive. I’d just like to do an update bc some stuff has gone good and I like talking to internet strangers about it. 💗 ASELAकुरा 💗 12:58, 29 February 2020 (UTC)

Well thank you or the ethics lesson Gol. What that lesson is...I'm utterly confused about but...as the ending of "Burn after reading" points out...there must be something to learn there...whatever it is. ShabiDOO 18:17, 11 March 2020 (UTC)



Minish (talk) 23:55, 1 March 2020 (UTC)
Always gonna be that one in a million, always had high, high hopes.Jeh2ow Damn son! 14:57, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Huh, who could have guessed that the totally-not-staged flashmob of genuine fans who went out of their way to choreograph a propaganda publicity film demonstrating how loyally dedicated they are to their leader was not a sure sign of victory? You Won't BELIEVE What Astronomers Found In This Neutron Star! - Number Four WILL Shock You! 23:26, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

My plans for RationalWiki articles in the next 1 to 3 months[edit]

Creating and or editing articles for schools accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges & Schools. Plenty for the picking and many of them with similar coercive recruitment tactics. Corinthians Colleges seems like the best candidate for my next article, basically a clone of ITT Tech. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 02:45, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

I suggest you start with a bullet list for these schools in the ACICS page first, before you start creating stub articles all over the place. Over time, it should become apparent if there's enough material or notoriety for the individual entries to be expanded into their own articles. Cosmikdebris (talk) 02:58, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I agree with Cosmikdebris' suggestion, it also makes it easier for the rest of us to easily locate articles to work on as part of this project or add our own in if we start one before you. I wish you luck Rationalzombie94!--NavigatorBR(Talk) - 21:57, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
The State of Virginia seems to be ripe with ACICS accredited schools. Going to do more research on it. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 13:28, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

ACICS schools are ripe with f**king lawsuits[edit]

Multiple schools accredited by these DeVos stooges are in the middle of lawsuits. So many innocent people getting scammed. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 00:01, 8 March 2020 (UTC)

A Srange Symptom of Capitalism[edit]

A decade or so ago, I worked as a gas station convenience store clerk.

BUT, one part of the training was that cops eat and drink free. Police officers had all food and drink comnped, only the really big dickheads checked at the counter to make sure that I blew them off at the register. And I also had to count change at the end of my shift for audits. But because it was a really good incentive to get cops to just hang around, my audits could be a little bit off. I learned in high school sociology that any offering, even if it's nice, crosses the line to a bribe when two lines of power intersect. Like, a cop is not supposed to accept a brownie from a granny when that cop is on the job, because that same cop is also responsible for arresting that granny if she breaks the law. But I am supposed to suffer a misread on my audit because I am keeping cops around? I quit the job, because the hours were bonkers. But cops getting comped by a business as an incentive/understanding is stupid.

I understand that a police officer's job is basically to sort out society's mess. I would like to give them a coffee and a sandwich. But there is a real reason businesses should not do that Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:44, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

The notion that 'power', defined as broadly and vaguely as possible, vitiates or invalidates every human interaction, is once again the theology of a religion I don't believe in. Gas station convenience stores like to have cops around because these businesses also attract a lot of petty crime that costs the proprietors money. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 05:55, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Yep, that's bribery. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:21, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I still think it's bribery, it draws closer police attention to the chains that can afford to give out coffee and sandwiches, and skews the attention of the cops towards a place that is already strategically located, built for maximum visibility, already has plans set in place if there is a situation. There are lots of convenience stores that don't have cops frequenting and can't afford the losses of petty crime. I really don't like those security videos of "hero shop owner pulls shotgun on robber." The only benefit as an employee is if I had diarrhea, the suggestion was to get a trusted customer or in the best case scenario, a cop, to watch the front counter for a couple minutes while you throw your underwear in the trash. I had never understood the importance of underwear before this was explained to me. Underwear is made so if you shit yourself, your pants stand a chance. Underwear is just the green mushroom of pants. It was a 24 hour convenience store, and overnight shifts were covered by a single employee, me, or now countless other exhausted people. Also I had to prep for morning and watch the register, it is a difficult job. I'm still pretty loyal, go to that chain over others because I know how hard the employees have to work. I lived 4 houses down from a convenience store when I was a kid and that place got robbed basically twice a month. Police sirens and lights in my window at night actually knocked me out as a kid. It was trains before that. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:26, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Oh, sorry, I was supposed to ask about the religion you don't believe in. I didn't think I was being vague, I thought I was explaining one point of power, law enforcement, and the need to keep law enforcement separate from the vague power structure of human interaction. While I totally agree law enforcement needs a huge focus on community interaction, if law enforcement is not buying their own coffees they are not on the same level. If law enforcement gets brownies from Granny simply for being law enforcement, that is an untenable perk of the job. Smerdis, I think we would both say "Police are important and have a difficult job." But in my experience, police do take these offers, and they do it very casually. Since you responded to my experience, would you care to elaborate on your idea that this makes some kind of sense? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:38, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

YouTube's recommendation algorithm[edit]

Yeah, it's old news, but I'm still trying to grasp the chain of logic in which every video related to pop culture or a funny meme leads into some Fox News talking head wannabe blathering anti-progressive crap. Is it because nerds skew right-wing, or because the anti-intellectual dark web folk are gaming the system? What kind of videos don't lead into right-wing loser recommendations? Are sites like Vimeo better about this kind of crap? Being on YouTube feels like reading The Sun. Colossal Squid (talk) 06:30, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

I'm not entirely sure, but I wouldn't assume its manipulation or maliciousness here. I was certainly surprised by the adjacency graph of some of the thing's I was watching years ago. I used to watch a fair bit of crap on youtube (thunderfoot, athiestexperience etc.) and I guess even when I was watching youtube haikus it was using my preferences and jumping to something meme-ish and related to what I'd watched, and some of the channels I actively watched were one degree of separation away from the likes of Sargon, Molyneux and Alex Jones. Luckily it was easy enough for me to give them a chance, listen for five minutes and deem them "fucking idiots", but I suspect many didn't have that reaction, therefore letting youtube re-enforce it's algorithm for others. McUrist (talk) 09:56, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Try clearing your cookies and not signing in. Generally speaking, it is my opinion that the Youtube universe is horrible for politics because it tends to reward the "WHASSUP PEOPLE I AM HERE TO *TOTALLY DESTROY* SOME OPINION" folk, attracting argumentum ad loudmouthum assholeum people who tend to have very little actual intelligence in their arguments. After clearing cookies, Youtube will bias in the direction of basically what you search. (I recommend obscure music, as that is a far more pleasant rabbit hole to fall in than politics.) Soundwave106 (talk) 13:33, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I already do my Youtube viewing without an account, and have my cookies flushed after every session with private mode. And still, anything related to things nerds fixate on tends to lead to some right-wing loser blather (even when I try to avoid commentators with right-wing political views already). Obscure music may be a good idea. Colossal Squid (talk) 15:12, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Unfortunately I do think "things nerds like" can have a fair bit of cross-pollinaton with "right wing idiocy". Pop culture wise, Gamergate and the anti-politically correct triggered mob on recent popcorn comic book films come to mind. Programming / IT even has its own stupid shit like, say, the world of Bitcoin. Playing around, I think one issue is that it only takes a few clicks into the world of stupid to all of a sudden get lots of bullshit video recommendations, even if you switch subjects (eg, click a Bitcoin link and you'll still see ads for doomsday recession fear-mongers and get-rich quick altcoin scams even if you quickly switch over to, say, searching for Golden Girls clips or something). Also there also appears to be a bit of IP tracking or browser session tracking or something because sometimes even clearing cookies doesn't erase the garbage (and non-garbage) "recommendations" from previous searches (however, if you repeatedly click non-garbage clips eventually Youtube figures that you are not interested, it seems). Youtube's algorithm is better than it used to be, it used to be (as this article noted) that simply searching for something as innocuous as "Federal Reserve" would bring up a whole bunch of conspiracy bullshit. It's not as bad now, but I still see a couple bits of bullshit here and then with this search term (for Altcoin Daily and Glenn Beck in a couple of Fed searches). Soundwave106 (talk) 16:32, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
That was kind of what I was getting at: gaming, programming, atheism etc. all sit within 1 or 2 degrees of the "shitheadosphere". When it comes to recommending your next video it basically looks at the odds the you will react positively to it. After watching this this review of a game, option a: redirecting to Sargon of Akkad on a conveniently similar topic, 40% watched it through, 20% liked, 80% sniggered at the idiocy and tuned out. Mildly positive outcome from Youtubes point of view. Option b: redirecting to a contrapoints on the same topic, 20% watched it through, 10% liked, 50% tuned out, 40% disliked then shouted about "leftist" conspiracies before attempting to dox then couldn't sleep at night from the rage etc. Negative outcome for Youtube. I think aside from gaming the system as commie says below, its also more convenient for farming views because of how Homogeneous the opinions are and how accessible the content is. McUrist (talk) 09:03, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
@Colossal Squid Not to sound like a paranoid conspiracy nut, but that's intentional. Do you know why Crowder rags on Star Wars? Because it's popular, but also because it'll get him clicks because YouTube's algorithms don't understand nuance. That's why you see a lot of alt-right and wingnut channels making endless repetitive videos talking about pop culture. They're gaming the system, because the system is shit. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 15:07, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Read some research re: youtube radicalization. A random walk through visible recommendations from alt-lite type content leads to non-political content rapidly, but users' actual clicks among recommendations lead to radicalization. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:10, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Well, for one thing, YouTube doesn't really care much about the difference between hate-watching and love-watching. There is the thumbs-up-down thing, but most people don't bother voting (watching something without voting on it counts like a soft thumbs up). Pyro (talk) 19:42, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Decided to officially not be Kosher[edit]

I had myself Dunkin's bag of bacon and a giant lobster at Outback Steakhouse, and let's just say my heart wasn't too happy.Jeh2ow Damn son! 15:00, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

Don't forget trying some Amish milk bread. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:06, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
A Muslim former-acquaintance of mine used to say that the tastiest ham sandwiches were made by Muslims. Bongolian (talk) 18:41, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Depends, I know some Muslim fast food joints that refuse to handle or sell pork products (even though there are plenty of potential non-Muslim customers for them). Hence why some pizza joints in my area has an asterisk after bacon, noting in the fine print that it’s turkey bacon. ScepticWombat (talk) 19:19, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Now look. There's some crimes religion pushes people to I can understand and forgive. Murder, terrorism, human sacrifice, eventually after enough time passes you have to say "well, shit people are all assholes". But replacing real bacon with turkey bacon and hiding that fact behind fine print? Unforgivable. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:47, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Bacon on pizza.... is pizza just not salty enough for you guys? --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 21:05, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Pro tip, buy a veggie pizza and add a meat to it if you need a meat. Most places charge the same for a veggie add-on as a meat add-on, and will absolutely load a veggie pizza with the stuff because people don't buy it. I need to drop another 5 pounds to meet my starting point, pizza ain't the way. But gol dern, people who don't eat vegetables on pizza blow my mind. That's just an exercise in stubbornness, pizza is intensely good even if there's pineapple on it. I'm not even mad at that New Zealand guy who said he put canned spaghetti on pizza; it's pizza, if there is a single useful vessel for serving spaghetti out of a can, pizza is the way. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:06, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
If you're trying to lose weight, you can do a lot worse than pizza. The reason pizza can get so fattening is that people load the thing with sausage, pepperoni and stuffed crust, just adding too much meat in general tends to do that to food. I don't like pepperoni on pizza too much for their tendency of being large pieces that slide around while I'm taking bites off), and compared to a sweet tomato, spinach, mushrooms, basil, or pineapple I just don't see the appeal of adding a lot of salty ingredients to something covered in cheese. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 05:01, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Some of the kind of pizzas I call "sludge pizzas" tend to be drenched in oil (and not only from meat toppings). Be that as it may, if you don't want to serve bacon on pizza, fair 'nough, but it sort of irks me to use asteriks and fine print to obfuscate this (the usual asterisk on a lot of pizzerias in my neck of the woods is to specify that "ham" is actually "pork shoulder" - a cheaper cut of meat, not meat from a completely different animal). Then again, I don't have any good pizzerias in the vicinity (only those of the aforementioned "sludge pizza" variety). So, I tend to only get pizza when I'm on the road and pass by a really good pizzeria. Though I do eat the occasional "sludge pizza" once in a blue moon, when I'm sick or hung over and can't be arsed to cook. Even then, it's not my first choice of hangover food, as I can get some comparatively decent fried food (burger/chicken) instead. Honestly, as most of these "sludge pizza" joints tend to do kebabs and burgers as well (and better), I'd be more likely to order one of those. ScepticWombat (talk) 13:44, 3 March 2020 (UTC)


FUCKING YES!!!! BUTTCHUG DROPPED OUT!!!!! WHOOOO!!!! Oxyaena Harass 15:27, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

The rampant homophobia shown by the Sandersnistas at this news has been... illuminating. RoundeTheeHorne (talk) 15:44, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Yeah they hate all the gay people who are also complete psychopaths. Unlike me, a person who will vote against LGBT rights in an instant if it's politically convenient! Tokens! That's how we do it here! Not people with a proven 50 year history of actively protecting gay rights. That's homophobia that is. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:53, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
The Democrat candidates are a really bad harvest this time around. As much as I really do not want to- I think I will vote for Bill Weld of the Republican Party. Not the best choice though. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 17:00, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
@RoundeTheeHorne Respond to Ikanreed's point. Oxyaena Harass 17:02, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
a) Don't tell me what to do, you're not my mother.
b) What point? That he doesn't like Bootedgedge? So what? It doesn't take away from the fact that the BernieTots were making homophobic remarks. That has fuck-all to do with Sanders' supposed position on gay rights... apart from his refusal to condemn them... again. There he has an excellent record of letting his supporters say what they want. And then vote for Trump when they don't get their way.
c) Bernie & his supporters are toxic as fuck.
d) Apart from renaming post offices, please provide a list of Bills Bernie has authored in his time in Congress. RoundeTheeHorne (talk) 19:00, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Yep, that's about what I expected. Absolutely no comments on the facts that e.g. Buttigieg has absolutely no platform on trans rights whatsoever. Or that Bernie has 50 fucking years of on record being pro gay marriage, and protecting trans rights way the fuck ahead of the rest of the party. Just trashy changing the subject, and angry toxicity. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:06, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Pete shouldn't have run. If the Democrats care about having credibility against Trump, they need to combat the idea that the presidency is an entry-level job. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 17:10, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Buttchug? Listen, Oxy. I have a ton of reasons to hate Pete, but homophobia isn't one of them. Needless to say, I am happy Buttigieg dropped out, because he didn't sound like a president that would actually do things. Also, tomorrow is Super Tuesday, so that means more chances for Bernie to earn some states.Jeh2ow Damn son! 17:42, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
"Buttchug's" homophobic? Oxyaena Harass 18:30, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
That was my first take, that it's homophobic, that it's an ad hominem attack on both his name and his sexual orientation.[3] There are a number of cheap-shot slurs against Buttigieg out there, all revolving around the homophobic idea that anal sex and gay sex are the same thing. Bongolian (talk) 18:48, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I guess the logic being that all sexual acts involving the butt are inherently homosexual? (EC) you can see that bongolian is in fact that dumb. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:53, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
@Ikanreed: You are misunderstanding what I wrote. It is homophobes who often equate gay sex with anal sex,[4][5] hence the likely origin of the Butt-related slurs against Buttigieg.[6] Bongolian (talk) 21:19, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I understood exactly what you meant from context. And it lowers my opinion of you that you'd cite a dumbass subreddit whose whole purpose in manufactuversy(look at basically any post there and tell me I'm lying). ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 21:34, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Fine, go ahead and call me stupid, @Ikanreed. I'm not the only one who thinks that buttchug is a homophobic slur:[7][8][9] OK, so what exactly is a 'buttchug'? It's one type of secret fraternity ritual that is simultaneously homophobic (because it is coerced upon pledges regardless of their actual sexual orientation or desires) and homosexual (by its nature).[10] (definitions 4 and 6 in Urban Dictionary) What is the purpose of these kinds of rituals (elephant walk is another one)? The rituals induce a code of secrecy via blackmail, and perpetuate the homophobic nature of such fraternities. Bongolian (talk) 23:55, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

Amazing how it suddenly became a slur overnight like that. No prior history, but someone mocks a shitty presidential candidate's name, and suddenly it must be. The word buttchug has been in use for decades, referring to a way of taking an alcohol enema, and never once appeared in conjunction with the word "slur" on the entire internet prior to april 2017. An internet full of many people sensitive to homophobia. Weird right? Almost... ALMOST like you're a gullible goddamn idiot who believes people who are lying to you.
You can either
A. Accept that those people are all lying to you(or mindlessly repeating a lie they heard, to be fair) and looking for a way to attack an innocent mocking of a dumb sounding name.
B. Double down and pretend that it's a somehow novel slur and all those people were being totally honest about how homophobic it is.
Please don't do B. Please? ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:22, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
In 2012, following a alcohol intoxication hospitalization of a Univ. Tennessee Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity member Alexander Broughton, he made a public homophobic denial about buttchugging at Pi Kappa Alpha, "This is the most gross idea I have ever heard. I would never do such a thing. I am a Christian who would never desecrate my body in that manner. To do so would be against God's law." "For the record, I am not a homosexual and do not appreciate the media reports that infer that I am gay."[11][12]
Shortly after the press conference, the University became known as "Butt Chugging U." [13][14][15]
So there is the fraternity system laid out: Broughton blacked out from alcohol consumption, can't remember too much about the incident, may have engaged in buttchugging, though he repeatedly denied it. He may have been coerced into something like a sex act, but no one will say what exactly happened in that basement where the 'Tour de Franzia' was taking place. The fraternity gets him a lawyer to help him write a statement for the press to try to save the fraternity's 'good name', and perhaps to keep the insurance company from raising their rates. Bongolian (talk) 20:02, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Buttigieg’s campaign always seemed the most cynical and craven of all of them to me. He’s basically Bill Clinton without the folksy charm (or the the sort of populism Slick Willie ran on back in ‘92) or Hillary Clinton without the resume. At least Bloomberg is openly in the race to protect his own assets, while Buttigieg was just the “listen to my hip messaging” spin candidate, beholden to the usual donor class. Even his slogans were lukewarm reheated versions of Obama-style “come together” without the former’s ability to channel civil right/charismatic religious rhetoric.
Indeed, looking at Buttigieg’s resume he seems even more of an unprincipled chameleon, willing to change his tune according to circumstance, and not least to line up with what’s best for Pete Buttigieg. His big “I’m a veteran” gig seemed exactly that sort of CV/career calculation, given that he basically just “got his ticket punched” (as the phrasing went in Vietnam) by serving one brief (and very safe) stint during a sabbatical from his post as mayor in 2014. Given that he’d been a reserve officer since 2009, one wonders why it took him so long to find a window in which to serve. ScepticWombat (talk) 19:09, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Specifically, I think "come together" messages fall on deaf ears post Trump. It's not that it's a bad idea politically. It's a bad idea now politically. Telling angry people to set aside their differences is good. Telling justifiably angry people to set aside their differences, that just makes us angrier. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:45, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Agree with the issue of “justifiably angry people” angle and even more so when the subtext is essentially “suck it up”, which is what Buttigieg’s version amounted to. A “come together” message has to include coming together around something; especially around something more than just Buttigieg’s personal ambition to become POTUS. ScepticWombat (talk) 19:51, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
And what do we coalesce into? The only reason we'd even unite is not actually to address deep-embedded disagreements within the Democratic Party, but trying to figure out who beats Trump the best and try to restore things to normal. That's a troubling sign IMO. History hasn't been kind to the fracturing of parties. The Republicans and the two-party system are part of this problem. We have no reasonable overton window to debate between conservatism and left-wing ideology as that thing has been shifted to conservatism/neoliberalism and reactionary. After all, many former Republicans have migrated to the Democratic Party because understandably, the current crop of what's considered conservatism is appalling. The thing about "come together" is that we tried getting a moderate, Hillary Clinton, we lost. I still think Bernie Sanders has the best shot, because he is a populist. His history shoes he can commit to his ideas (even if it's opposed by moderate Democrats) and his policies actually jive with the general population. I think it'll even jive with most conservative voters, who share similar problems as liberal voters such as struggling to find a job, being uncertain about the future, paying terrible rent, etc. if you just carefully reword things, such as how green technology was popular with Republicans when it was reworded to appeal to business conservatives, easier said than done though. Even if policies don't jive with moderate Democrats, how will electing Biden even address the core problems? Obama didn't exactly do enough to address the actual causes of the recession, he even appointed some architects of the recession to high positions. He still committed human rights abuses and locked children in cages. I don't want a continuation of those policies. I feel electing a moderate Democrat will just continue with the tax cuts for the wealthy or not even remove them, not even try to remove them, or not do enough to remove them, for instance. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 21:23, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
"Buttchug"? Really? I'm glad he's out too, but let's avoid things that are homophobic-adjacent please. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 21:54, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I think the issue of a “return to normal” is exactly the issue. The idea that you can win on what is essentially a return to the (Bill) Clinton/Obama (or for that matter the Bush Jr.) era as basically the good old days is where the serious rift is. It seems to me that there are far too many Americans for whom that is either outright unacceptable or at least not enough for such an approach to convince enough voters to support a candidate.
This means that there are enough people who want something, anything to change, because the post Cold War system does not seem to work for them, indeed to work against them. If they see no prospect for themselves or their children in the existing system, there is nothing to keep them voting even for a bloviating political amateur arsonist like Trump, because then at least they get the Schadenfreude of “sticking it to the man” (even if Trump actively continues the trends that diminished their prospects, he provides circuses, if not bread)
However, the DNC still sees Trump as a sui generis aberration, while Sanders and Yang (and possibly Gabbard and earlier I would have added Warren, though I’m less sure now) see Trump as a symptom of a deeper malaise. I think they’re right in this perspective and unless the “moderates” (or “status quo”) wing realises this, they will almost inevitably lose to a Trump. ScepticWombat (talk) 22:01, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
After the Great Depression leading to the rise of far-right groups in Europe, how can anyone look at Trump, after the Great Recession, and believe that he's an aberration? I think the DNC isn't stupid enough to see Trump as "only" an aberration. I'm sure they know the far-right fallout from the Great Recession bears similarities to the fallout from the Great Depression, but I think they're practicing really poor optics to make it seem like they don't know what the hell they're doing. They clearly don't like Trump, but only because he threatens their power, not because they dislike his policies enough. Like, for them, power comes before actually examining how policies hurt people or wither at democratic institutions. If being fair and democratic helps the DNC, as with high voter turnout and removing gerry-mandering, they'll try upholding fair rules. If being unfair helps the DNC, they will use their usual lobbyists and Super PACs to get the power, and they're not shy of gerry-mandering either. In some cases, it's kind of two sides of the same coin, but Democrats at least benefit from high voter turnout, and they have people in their ranks that do actually promote democracy or at least communicate populist messages more coherently. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:13, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────The problem is that the DNC (and a lot of the talking heads) seem convinced that “people vote their demographics” and that this means that the Democrats will automatically win as demographics change. This is coupled with an accompanying belief that those who are dissatisfied with the rightward drift of the Democrats “have nowhere else to go”, because that was the lesson they have drawn from the 1990s and 2000s (up until Trump).

I think the Democrats have actually been somewhat shielded by the two-party system with its tendency to “vote against” aka “voting for the lesser of two evils”. However, they are likely to generate low and decreasing turnout, similar to what has happened elsewhere where the political options have essentially been limited to various forms of 1990s style Clinton/Blair “left market worship” as the “left option”. Just look at what has happened to the Social Democrats in several European countries who went down the Third Way. At best, they faced a mild decline while parties to their left grew significantly. At worst, they were reduced to a shadow of their former strength. ScepticWombat (talk) 22:31, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

Klobuchar gone, too[edit]

While the race thinning out in terms of moderates is concerning, this is actually good for Bernie in the short term - it frees up the 92 delegate state of Minnesota entirely to Bernie, she was his only competition in her home state. (Although she may still get some delegates through early votes) It's not yet clear who her supporters would split off to. Minish (talk) 19:28, 2 March 2020 (UTC)

If you've ever looked at second choice crosstabs, the answer is "everyone". Though klobb voters in particular I think were the least likely to go to Bernie. And maybe the most likely to go to Pete? Guess it's outdated info. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:43, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I’m not sure it’s that good for Sanders. The exit of Steyer, Buttigieg and Klobuchar has to be viewed in relation to the highly important 15% viability threshold. With all of them out, the likelihood increases that a slew of Super Tuesday states will have three candidates (Sanders, Biden and Bloomberg) above the threshold, while it probably reduces Sanders’s chances of an outright majority. This is also why Warren’s decision to keep at it is very bad for Sanders. She is clearly not going to support him, so if she reaches 15% in, say, California, that may deprive him of crucial delegates. Conversely, by siphoning off less than 15% of voters, many of whom might otherwise vote for Sanders, she can also ensure that he will have a harder time reaching an overall majority of delegates, especially with the increased likelihood of Biden/Bloomberg making it past the 15%. ScepticWombat (talk) 19:59, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Ah you're looking at this from a "sanders wants to win a plurality to be the presumptive nominee" perspective. I'm looking at this from a "If sanders gets anything less than 51%, the party will hand the nomination to someone 'electable' and lose spectacularly" perspective. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:16, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
A brokered convention, something that would only forcibly tear the party into two divided halves, has never happened before since the Democratic nomination process was semi-democratised after the infamous fiasco that was the 1968 Democratic primary. If Warren continues to stand, even if Bloom drops out, it is going to happen, and she will be remembered for it infamously by the Progressive wing of the party. Minish (talk) 20:46, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Depending on the exact scenario, it's reasonable to say that a brokered convention could be the electoral death of the democratic party. Record low turnouts, record high third party voting. Downballot candidates losing in democratic strongholds. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:51, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Speaking of those apparently not dropping out (yet, at least); why exactly is Tulsi Gabbard still running? I mean she has been demonstrated to have spectacularly little to nonexistent support, to the extent that her dropping out would probably have effectively no impact on the end result. So, is there anything beyond mere stubbornness keeping her in the race? ScepticWombat (talk) 21:33, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
She's probably trying to get donations and traction for future political ventures at this point. Minish (talk) 22:06, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
Really? I mean I could see that being the reason if she was either an actual factor in deciding the final outcome, if she got significant airtime, or if she was raising serious money, but I haven’t seen evidence of either of these, so I wonder if she actually benefits from this race in any meaningful way at this point.
I mean she is hardly even mentioned when the results are tallied, because she only get one or two percent of the votes and who is going to throw money after her, given this lack of media coverage? Then there’s the problem that she hardly seem well placed to gain from some form of bargain struck with other candidates or even a brokered convention (as she’s unlikely to get any delegates). Nor does she appear to have struck up any alliances for future use or to be laying the groundwork for a potential 2024 run. I really can’t see the angle here. ScepticWombat (talk) 22:18, 2 March 2020 (UTC)
I predict she'll be Biden's VP pick. Tinact (talk) 06:24, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
On the off chance that you're serious, why on earth would Biden pick someone who doesn't bring anything at all to the table?
If Biden wants a younger, female running mate, why not pick Stacey Abrams? She at least have some status left from her Georgia contest, her response to Trump's State of the Union address last year and the general air of a "rising star". Or Klobuchar to strengthen his appeal in the Midwest?
The only thing Gabbard has shown is an absolutely dismal primary record, far worse than most of the other hopefuls who actually made it into the initial, pre Super Tuesday round of voting and caucusing, only edging ahead on dead-on-arrivals like Deval Patrick and Michael Bennet at the bottom of the "minuscule support" category, though she got slightly more votes than Yang in New Hampshire (while doing worse than him in Iowa).
To recap Gabbard's score so far (in votes/percentages): Iowa 0% (16 votes), New Hampshire 3.3%, Nevada 0% (32 votes), South Carolina 1.3%. With that track record, why would anyone pick her as VP? Or, for that matter, throw money at her? ScepticWombat (talk) 14:05, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Well, Abrams would be a smart choice, too. Klobucher didn't do well in most of the primaries but she's from the Midwest and, like she says all the time, she's never lost an election in Minnesota. But Abrams would probably be compatible with Biden, too. I'm just pretty sure he's going to pick a woman and Warren is just not compatible with him plus she'd never agree to be VP. So, I thought Klobucher was a likely choice. Biden also likes Buttigieg a lot but it was clear from his remarks that he think Buttigieg needs some national political experience first. I have no idea who Sanders would choose if he is the nominee as, again, I don't think Warren would agree to serve as VP and AOC is far too young and inexperienced. I'm just certain that with three old white guys competing to be the nominee, whoever wins the nomination will pick someone who represents a different demographic. Tinact (talk) 16:02, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

The 2020 Presidential Election will probably be a bigger nightmare than 2016[edit]

Sadly the Democrats are leading this shit show right now. The Republicans lead the shit show in 2016. I had hopes that the Democrats would get their act together but the debates and horrible ads from Bloomberg destroyed my hopes for that. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 12:36, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

Obama-style candidates with excellent oratory skills and a solid head for leadership are pretty rare these days, which is a pity. Of the front-runners, I actually think the one doing the worst, Warren, would make the best president, unfortunately America penalizes women leaders and wonks these days. I know this place tends to be kind to Sanders, but Sanders has a problem of being a bit of a blowhard absolutist, who proposes programs where the math doesn't work out right; his fairly light legislative record does not inspire confidence, plus his presidential campaign is very light on foreign policy, the area where presidents are of most direct impact (his recent blunder on Cuba was not a helpful example). We need many of his ideas, but I have a feeling he's not the greatest person to implement them. On the other hand, Biden's platform on foreign policy isn't much better -- actually, I find his website very mushy on ideology overall, and his campaign honestly hasn't inspired much confidence in his oratory skills. He seems to kind of be running on name recognition, in my opinion. Biden is still a fair bit better in the oratory department than the grouchy Bloomberg (at least Bloomberg has a plan on his website that is better IMHO than many would think, but his oratory skills are way off). Rest assured, though, I honestly find all of them much better than Trump, hopefully there's no hard feelings after all the in-fighting among the Democrat in-factions is done. Soundwave106 (talk) 13:48, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
I don't think that Obama showed that much of a " solid head for leadership". If anything, he was more of a custodian of conventional wisdom from the Clinton era with the same kind of popular, populist rhetoric in his initial run and similar paltry results (even Obamacare was something of a half measure) and his absolutely ridiculous decision to sit and wait for the GOP to give him a helping hand in a bipartisan deal.
The irony is that exactly the kind of conventional wisdom among the talking heads that saw Obama as a great leader, told everyone that the apparently routed GOP of 2004 and '08 would have to turn back to the centre (a knee jerk recommendation) if it wanted to stay relevant. Instead, we got the right wing populism of the Tea Party and a yet more radical rightward turn within the GOP, that not only knocked off Obama's Congressional support, but also primaried old school GOP'ers and culminated in the election of Trump (whom the same talking heads seemed incapable of imagining actually winning).
To me, Obama seems bound to go down the same road as Bill Clinton and Tony Blair: Extraordinarily feted (at least in some circles) while in office, their reputations seem to only decline as time passes and their time in office is put into perspective. ScepticWombat (talk) 14:22, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
I don't think the insanity of the right has peaked yet. The infrastructure for crazier and crazier extremists remains in place. There's gonna be some when prophesy fails style ultra-radicalization when Trump loses. I expect deaths in the hundreds. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:32, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
"Normalcy" is what created this nightmare in the first place, electing a centrist is only gonna lead to someone worse than Trump down the road. They're the problem, not the solution. Oxyaena Harass 15:17, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
I'm slightly, slightly more generous than Oxy about that. Normalcy plus rising inequality created the nightmare. If there hadn't been this constant gnawing at the social safety net and tax cuts for the rich and fed policy aimed at slow steady inflation without minimum wage increases to match and bail outs of failing capital institutions, people would never have gone for trump. And some centrist fuckwit wouldn't sound like signing the death warrant of hundreds of thousands. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:42, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Where do you think media sits within the blame game? If the UK election is anything to go by: the media is significantly more biased, it's more polarising and it's more sophisticated at manipulating opinions thanks to a much faster turnaround and they seem to have increased rather than decreased reach despite lower physical sales and more online competition. Has the Murdoch press just exploited an opening and the true fault lies in the engineered destruction of the education system? McUrist (talk) 15:59, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
The only blame there is that there is such a thing as "the" media. The fact that like... 4 corporations control 90% of reporting is bad. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:03, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
The media is a pos, that's that. They wouldn't shut the hell up documenting every little thing Trump does and giving attention to him during the 2016 election cycle, yet barely any of them accept blame for feeding us a Trump-does-this, Trump-does-that media cycle. I still recall LA Times readers complaining about the coverage Trump keeps getting during that cycle. I remember how fed up I am too. But this generates clicks, ad revenue, subscriptions. They don't have to be sorry. And right after Trump won, we kept getting articles after articles interviewing Trump supporters, all with the same narrative of "I think businessmen can do things" and "well I don't like how he talks but I think he knows well for me" and "His policies hurt me right now but it'll work out because he knows what he's doing" because their goddamn opinion is soooo important. And now they're coalescing into Biden and they keep bringing up the "toxic" "Bernie Bros." situation as if that's unique to Bernie and something that has to be opposed. Corporations controlling media makes a lot of sense why they keep doing this shit, but it also tells me what a deeply rigged system this whole damn thing, unchecked capitalism, is. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:52, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
@ScepticWombat: It doesn't help that Obama has mocked the millennial support base that helped get him into power in the first place. Colossal Squid (talk) 16:05, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
When did he do that? I know he made some musings on "cancel culture" but I personally think a little push-back on the "woke rules of order" crowd isn't a bad thing.
From my viewpoint, calling centrists "the problem" is bullshit absolutism, this is as shitty of a term as "RINO". The Clinton era made perfect sense coming off of Reagan-ism, where many people, like it or not (and you can debate why), were overall relatively happy to accept tax cuts for the rich and social safety net gnawing. The "overton window" has moved left and it really needs to, but if the progressives want to go in the absolutist direction, fair enough, it'll be fun to see legislative gridlock *even when one party has control of all chambers of government*. Which is the exact thing that happened to the Republicans. Soundwave106 (talk) 16:19, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
@Soundwave106 You seem to forget that both Clinton and Obama initially ran as transformative candidates with a clear populist streak, not as centrist “We’ll just tinker a bit with what we inherited from the GOP” candidates. They only changed to the “status quo, safe pair of hands” line after the initial enthusiasm had brought them to the White House and they were running as incumbents.
The question is whether your political strategy is essentially to try to cannibalise small slivers of swing voters who already trend more or less Republican and assume that everyone on your left flank will dutifully turn out to “vote blue no matter who”. Or whether you go for a mobilisation strategy. I personally don’t think it’s a coincidence that turnout in POTUS elections collapsed after Clinton’s 1992 victory, when Democrats and the GOP began their tête-à-tête ever rightwards.
My suspicion is that continuing the cannibalisation strategy will lead to either a seepage to the faux right wing populism (because they at least play at wanting to change a system that a significant portion of Americans consider to be “rigged”) or they will simply stay home, with a small pissed off element possibly voting third party.
Another huge problem for the “centrists” (aka Reagan Republicans) is their complete lack of vision and ambition that basically takes the current, political circumstances as an almost immutable given. This simply hands all the initiative to an increasingly radical GOP with no interest in “playing nice” as was so blatantly illustrated during the Obama years, as he wasted his initial momentum waiting for the GOP to reach out for a bipartisan compromise that they clearly had zero interest in playing ball with. This is why I consider Obama and a lot of the centrists to basically be small c conservatives, because they generally seek to tinker along the edges to ensure most things remain the same, or what Edmund Burke called “change to conserve”, which is how conservatism tends to be defined, at least in Europe.
Trump and the Tea Party, by contrast, has shown what can be accomplished in a frighteningly short time, if you don’t mind threatening fellow party members in the primaries (if you have a credible threat, of course). If you don’t at least hold that in reserve as a potential tool of pressure, then you’ll end up with the kind of tinkering a bit at the edges that will leave an increasing number of voters dissatisfied as the squeeze relentlessly moves up the socio economic ladder. ScepticWombat (talk) 19:00, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Trump and the Tea Party haven't honestly accomplished much of substance in their decade of existance. Rhetoric, sure. Winning elections, yes. Actually passing legislation, well, not really at the national level (and that is pretty fortunate to be honest). An unaffordable tax cut which (ironically considering how the Tea Party was Very Concerned about the debt under Obama) piles on government debt, a few government shutdowns, and a failed attempt to gut "Obamacare" -- yay. (The judicial appointments under Trump might be the only significant side effect we're going to have to live at for a while. And at the state level, they can proudly claim experiments like wrecking Kansas as an "accomplishment" I guess). I actually agree with you that running as a New Democrat wouldn't work as well these days (though Biden does seem to poll just as well head to head with Trump as Sanders does, I think Sanders would in the end generate more enthusiasm, particularly among people who wouldn't ordinarily vote). My thoughts were more against dogmatism. American government isn't just one individual, and should the Democrats win all three chambers, progressive Democrats will have to work with more moderate Democrats and vice versa -- there's no way around that, America is not a monoculture or even a culture of purely Red vs. Blue. I don't blame Obama for wanting to compromise with Republicans back then because, honestly, back then there was still some wiggle room for bi-partisan agreements, pretty much roughly up until about the time he took presidency (and we know some reasons why things went so dogmatic so quickly). But everyone Democrat should know by now not to work with Republicans while in they are in Trump insanity mode (Biden hasn't learned this lesson yet and that's a negative in my book these days). My hope is Democrats can work with each other and we don't get the equivalent embarrassment of the "House Freedom Caucus" temper tantrums that happened on the Republican side back then. Should Sanders be elected, I think some people are going to be disappointed, because the president by design can't do everything (this is overall a good thing), and everything will have to go through the House and Senate where multiple viewpoints and alignments will exist. In fact, should the Republicans hold the Senate, nothing really will probably happen at all (due to current Republican Trump insanity) except a lot of hot air and some executive order tinkering. Soundwave106 (talk) 20:04, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
The only actual goals they had as an astroturf movement was tax cuts for the rich and destruction of the social safety nets. Success in that field has been overwhelming. All the stuff they told the chuds they were voting for were just lies. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:30, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
They're also whittling away at democratic institutions with gerrymandering, voter ID laws, and trying to stuff the courts with cons. They're also abusing the walk-out feature to keep legislation they don't like from passing, such as situation in Oregon. I think besides tax cuts, they want to keep courts sympathetic to corporations, bomb other countries for their resources, tear down national parks for exploitation, send people to fight and die for oil to power their 20 Ferraris. We still have a window to prevent all this from happening, but the redcaps don't give a shit, just as long as redcaps see decent people getting alarmed and screaming at redcaps. Besides, even if this stopped, the redcaps are still there, and we still have A LOT TO DO to clean up from their spit. As for climate change, we wasted too many years stalling first with Bush's two unbelievable terms, then with Obama breaking his back and passing things that aren't enough for two terms, and then Trump undoing a lot of that progress. Those terms add up, and the stuff Trump didn't accomplish translates to a ton of years trying to deal with climate change. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:40, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@Soundwave106 I think this overly process oriented (verging on the complacent) focus ignores not only the outcomes mentioned by ikanreed and LeftyGreenMario, but also that the GOP seems to increasingly moving towards a strategy not of passing important legislation, but of making the federal level increasingly ungovernable via a deliberately dysfunctional Congress, personified by Mitch McConnell.

Instead, they are focusing their efforts at the state level and to institutionalise their ideology via the SCOTUS and the justice system in general (not least through decades of cranking out lawyers schooled in their particular views through various educational programmes, summer schools etc., as described by Nancy MacLeanWikipedia in her 2017 book Democracy in Chains). The ultimate wet dream for this approach would be a constitutional convention (though that might also be a risky venture) to add such important curtailments on political options as a balanced budget amendment. Indeed, an erosion of the (decision making) capabilities of public institutions on which their hold is not fairly certain is a net win for the GOP, especially as a demonstration that the public sector can’t be trusted to deliver for a broad section of the US populace. ScepticWombat (talk) 00:55, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

Not all states are dominated by the GOP, though -- some are, but in other states the GOP is irrelevant. Not all billionaires align with the corporate-libertarian Koch-Randroid style system (in fact even Trump and Koch have spatted over the China trade war and other issues. There are also Democrat leaning billionaires and liberal think tanks). I personally think American government institutions have held up well *in spite of* the GOP radicalization and the do-nothing bullshit at a federal level, and I only have to look at several other countries (from Britain to Eastern Europe) to see counter-examples that are worse. Yes, dysfunction is indeed a bad thing in an era of pressing issues like climate change, and I am well aware of the political bullshit the GOP overall tries to pull (you have to admit the Democrats pulled some of that too in the past, it's just that since the Newt Gingrich days the GOP has heavily upped the subversion to its current level). Which is why (as someone to the left of Joe Biden but to the right of a lot here on the wiki, I feel) I tend to vote straight ticket blue these days (not something I always did in the past). And why I hope any hard feelings between various Democratic factions are erased at the final election time. Which was the original point. Soundwave106 (talk) 02:42, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Without comment on anything else, just about every historian who's reviewed Democracy in Chains has concluded it's a masterpiece in bullshit artistry. The sources MacLean uses to back up her arguments almost never say what she claims they do. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 03:40, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
@The Blade of the Northern Lights Really? I know she has been criticised by some for overstating her conclusions, but so far the only really scathing reviews have come from Buchanan’s supporters outlets. That she is systematically abusing the source material should be fairly easy to demonstrate. ScepticWombat (talk) 06:28, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
On a cursory glance I found this. Apparently it's her comments on his views on public choice and school segregation that drew the most ire. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 16:58, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

It does seem increasingly likely that trump will win[edit]

There's no way biden of all people heals the divide that hillary's failure created within the party, and there's absolutely no way he beats trump. He might or might not get the nomination, but if he does, that's pretty much it for 2020. Republicans sweep up and downballot. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:16, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

Why is it that the prevailing philosophy of US liberals in particular seems to be "There is no alternative. Better things aren't possible."? On health care alone, they may as well be right-wingers considering every other industrialized nation has universal access and treats such a thing as common sense. Colossal Squid (talk) 14:34, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Why exactly would they do that? Seriously, why would they do that? When that's the position of people like Sanders, why exactly would they take it? When lying and moving right has worked for them thus far, why would they stop now? Your optimism seems a bit naive, and definitely not accounting for the current political tides and geography. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:50, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Considering the demographics of who's voting for Biden? I'm blaming actual lead poisoning from leaded gasoline. Can't decide if I'm being ironic or serious about that, ask me later. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:00, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
It's self fulfilling prophecy. The tone oof the media and commentators say it can't be done so what's the point. It's pure bullshit. If people just give up because they don't have the candidate of their wet dreams or never believe their goals could be achieved then no doubt unscrupulous dirty trick playing lying assholes will win and do as they please. The defeatest attitude is tiring and lame. The only place where things can't be done right now are North Korea and Somalia and even then that's just a short term prediction. Surprising election results happen all the time. Great effective leaders pop up from time to tkme. You can't discount them before they've even won the primary. Talk about over-analysis. ShabiDOO 17:07, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
"You can't predict their actions before they get elected!" Except you can, because they've been in office before, and pushed through certain patterns of legislation. These people don't exist in a vacuum where they have no previous history. They've made statements for and against certain policies, passed legislation, etc. So yeah, we can predict what they'll do. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 17:29, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Political news in the USA has a shelf life of maybe a week, if that. The miniature-poodle chorus of the pundits will have moved on to an entirely different narrative by next Wednesday. And there will be many more changes in the weather between now and November. Way too early to speak of winners and losers. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 19:06, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Irrelevant. Media narratives might matter for a small segment of easily swayed people who vote in primaries. But in terms of turnout? Biden can't and won't do it. He has no reason anyone who's not sure if they're gonna vote will actually get up and vote. No turnout means the right wing regulars win. 2016 again, with a whole lot of "well we're not trump" and not much else for the dems. Doomsday up and down ballot. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:10, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
That's exactly what I think. People want change, in the current political climate a moderate basically means "no change". People are not going to get up and vote for that, it really seems the D party learned nothing from 2016. 2804:431:C7F2:A9FD:8608:C629:B2B0:ADE4 (talk) 20:02, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
How a person senates can give you some hints about how they will president but no you cannot predict how they'll be presidenting with any level of certainty. The amount of confidence people have in their predictions of how an election will turn out or how well a politician who isn't even elected yet will do...is astounding. We are fairly close to having no idea what the results will be. Even with polls. ShabiDOO 20:21, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
You can be very confident that Biden doesn't offer anyone anything regaring the election because he hasn't. It's reaaaaaaaaaaaal damn obvious he'll lose this. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:28, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
And do you have the lottery numbers too? Aloysius the Gaul 20:46, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Sure do. The lottery numbers are actually letters where I come from. Strange thing, but here's what they're going to be "DOINGTHESAMETHINGTWICEANDEXPECTINGDIFFERENTRESULTS". With that many letters the odds of winning are very low. So you get a huge payout for being right. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 21:18, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Sigh ShabiDOO 21:21, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
I'm sorry, I'm not putting up with incredibly obvious insights about how elections work being treated like divination. If you bring nothing to the table, you lose. Even against the dumbest, most noxious candidate in the world. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 21:51, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
It seems like every midterm for the past 30ish years, the opposing party failed to bring their A Game. Republicans brought out that bland blandness that was Romney, plus Bob Dole, whereas Democrats had John Kerry and now Biden. I've stopped caring too much about it, nothing I can really do, just hold my nose and vote. Will probably vote Biden, I have few nice things to say about him but that's more than I can say for the current President. Would not be able to stomach a vote for Bernie (I know he's popular here, but he has no political accomplishments to speak of), might stomach Warren, but it's between Biden and Bernie now. CoryUsar (talk) 22:51, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Sigh... Can I just point out that Cuba is apparently better than us? Fucking Cuba, a developing nation that was a dictatorship under a trade ban for 40-50 years. Yeah, that Cuba, that Cuba is able to do what the US will not. Not "cannot" Will not. We can provide healthcare to all, tax the wealthy dipshits who pay nothing to our communities, forgive student loan, etc. But we won't, because we're a bunch of apathetic, scared, selfish, cowards. Fuck that bullshit. And fuck everyone who thinks any form of improvement is bad and scary. When people finally lose their shit and start killing each other over land and food, I want you to understand that that's on you, you did that, you voted for that. You voted for a status quo that is so far up it's own ass that it'll let vast numbers of people die rather than pay a single penny to improve life on this pathetic rock. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 01:25, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
In return for free health care and other common services, Cubans essentially couldn't own land, couldn't start private business, and couldn't vote. The state controlled all means of production, and they sucked at it. The smart people left Cuba for good reasons when Castro took over. I'll grant that Fulgencio Batista (and the US support of such) was very nasty, but there's ways of getting better health care without going full on Communist bullshittery (every other rich democracy does it). Right now personally, I'm getting the most tired of left wing Bernie Bros that have such an epistemic closure that they don't see that there's actual fucking opinions out there and not everyone thinks the sky is falling. Election season is awesome. (talk) 04:07, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Thank you dumbfuck, for going for a complete strawman of my point. At no point in my posts did I advocate for Communism, nor Authoritarianism. Learn to read, dipshit. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 04:15, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Then learn to type different words than "Cuba is better than us", dumbass. I read those fucking words just fine. (talk) 13:17, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Yeah, okay, that true statement has no bearing on the false statement you attributed to GC. The US is one of the most hyperauthoritarian countries in the world, hands down. And every one of our "enemies" we're supposed to fear becoming, with the exception of North Korea, has: far less of their populace in jail, far less comprehensive spying on all citizens, fewer suspicious elections, less apparent corruption, less police brutality in suppressing protests, and no fucking concentration camps. But heaven forfend your entirely fictional idea of "starting your own business" being banned. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 13:26, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Gods and goddesses fucking orally and anally above and below!!! Let me put this in simple terms so everyone including the red-baiting morons can understand. Cuba has a weaker economy. Cuba can afford to provide basic public services like affordable education and universal healthcare. Ergo, you illiterate morons the US can afford to do the same. Unless YOU are telling ME that Cuba is better than the US. Everyone got that? Good. Quit pointing out the fucking baseline of my argument. Idiots. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 15:57, 6 March 2020 (UTC)

What makes it hurt so much more, is that 2016 started out okay, and started to suck (At least from what I remember of it), this just started at full fucking suck, and escalated into a shitshow... And it's 4 March. There's 245 days or 8 months until we get utter disrepair confirmed for us. I think I'm going to pre-request the day after election day off. I won't want to be in work at 7am staring at a map of utility infrastructure, trying to not scream in our open floor plan office.--NavigatorBR(Talk) - 02:13, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
All this gloom and etc., is really just silly. Trump won because he convinced enough undereducated working people they had something to gain. Trouble is, most of them got nothing out of it. News flash: they are neither insane nor insouciant. Doing the same thing over again is not very smart, and that applies to the GOP in spades. 2018 was an ass-kicking. The main difference between Hillary and Biden is, conservatives hated Hillary and like Biden. Our young idealist crowd likes Sanders, and that's fine. Trouble is, they don't usually turn out. I'll vote for the democrat whoever it is. I say that the D's are going to win big, even if they nominate the ersatz democrat from Vermont. Ariel31459 (talk) 04:36, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
@Ariel31459 I think you’re absolutely wrong to see Trump as an aberration that simply tricked stupid voters into voting for him in a onetime fluke. Of course, this is the crux of the debate between the DNC camp and the progressive wing of the Democrats: Is Trump the disease or the symptom. I agree with the latter interpretation, which is why a status quo candidate like Biden will in all likelihood lose, because not enough voters overall look back with misty eyed nostalgia to the Obama or (Bill) Clinton era as “the good old days”. Don’t underestimate the willingness to support a political arsonist like Trump among people who absolutely hate and despise the political establishment, or how big a slice of the voters they comprise.
As for the 2018 experience, I see that as an example of the Democrats tentatively trying for some of the populism (e.g. healthcare) that has broad appeal. Biden is the antithesis of that, given that he’s banking on Obama’s support. Do anyone really think that he’s going to seriously change (which necessitates attacking) Obamacare, the crown jewel of the Obama legacy?
I think that the Democrats will in all likelihood lose with a Biden pick (not that a Sanders candidacy would be a shoe in, far from it). Indeed, the way Biden will probably end up winning the nomination, by piggybacking on a host of endorsements, rather than breaking out on his own, couldn’t be a more perfect fit for Trump, who has already relaunched his “rigged system” rhetoric. I am highly sceptical about the complacency shown for decades in the Democratic party, as it seems to assume that demographic changes will automatically hand them victory, eventually. ScepticWombat (talk) 06:20, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Oh, I don't know. The Sanders voters did not turn out on super Tuesday. That is either because they are all talk and no action, or because there just aren't enough of them. I don't mind either way. That's all on them. I don't know why it so difficult for the Sandys to understand American politics: It doesn't matter who the president is if the Potus' party controls congress and wants to do something bad enough. No democrat president is going to veto popular democratic legislation . Top Democratic election issue: Dump Trump. Who wants to pay for everyone else's kid's college tuition? Well, I don't know for sure, that's a tough one. Don't be surprised if your Aunt and Uncle don't get it.Ariel31459 (talk) 06:46, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Yup, fuck them kids! The cultural rot is well-advanced after decades of right-wing attacks on "big government", "welfare queens", and the basic idea of civil society, and is everywhere in older whites, who believe that "they weren't handed anything" and the kids these days are lazy whiners and hey why should I have to pay taxes for someone else's kid. But they're the ones who are both wealthiest (compared to other generations) and vote in droves, so they control U.S. politics. Here in CA it looks like the state school bond and most local bonds are going down. Goes against the stereotype of CA as Soviet Russia, but those of us who pay attention know the biggest part of the Democratic electorate is older "moderate" whites who think we don't need to be quite so mean to gays, minorities, etc. but still don't want to live near most of them or pay taxes. -- (talk) 10:33, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Pet peeve: it's "shoo in". -- (talk) 10:33, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
If by "something to gain" you mean "a patriarchial white ethnostate", yes. The question is, will those people decide Trump isn't really going to come through with that, and hence stay home/go third party, or will they believe he hasn't because of Democrat deep state resistance? -- (talk) 10:33, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Yup, if Biden gets the nomination he loses. Disaffected Sanders/etc. supporters will stay home. The 'pub message will be: Biden is old and creepy and corrupt. Ukraine, Ukraine, Ukraine. They're already gearing up for this. The point is not to convince people to vote Trump. It's to emphasize that both sides are bad so there's no point in voting. This is to make Democrats stay home, while loyal Trumpshirts will crawl over flaming broken glass to vote. It'll be a repeat of 2016; Trump and his media guys know the way to plant an idea in the public mind is repeat something simple over and over and over, as with "Hillary emails corruption". Democrats will try a bunch of nuanced and detailed critiques, like all of the hilarious corruption of Trump and Friends, and it will fall flat because a) it's too complex for the 15-second attention span of the media, so they won't amplify it b) Trump supporters don't care. And there's a good chance of an assist from Barr and other loyalists in the bureaucracy just flat-out arresting Biden on "corrpution" charges, or else pulling a Comey-style "October surprise". Democrats might not lose the House, only because that's a stretch, but that's small comfort because the party will tear itself apart in the aftermath, and Republicans are likely to go full-on fascism in a Trump second term. Get ready for some interesting times. I will be thrilled to be proven wrong, but right now I have a bad sense of deja vu. -- (talk) 10:33, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

And Bloomberg is out[edit]

Good-bye to bad rubbish. I consider Bloomberg to be at least complicit in the death of Eric Garner. Bloomberg created the 'loosies' market with his punitive and regressive public-healthist taxes on tobacco. Anti-smoking has been a civil rights emergency for years, and this is why. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 15:40, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

This statement reads like a parody of libertarians, except it falls on the "genuine" side of Poe's Law. Colossal Squid (talk) 15:45, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Well, that was a giant waste. Now we can finally be more progressive and vote for Sanders. I hope.Jeh2ow Damn son! 17:20, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
His campaign was one of those things that in hindsight was so poorly thought out, you have to wonder what he was thinking. Not sure that the time is right for Biden, but at least the Super Tuesday voters had the good sense not to go for the billionaire trying to buy his way into the race. I would have preferred Warren over Sanders - I think she would be better at presidenting - but at least Sanders's longstanding sincerity makes him relatively immune to Trump's theater. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 19:03, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Well it was something of a trial balloon for "can you buy a presidency" since that much money had never been dumped into an election before. And, while I'm super glad it failed, it didn't fail utterly. Him getting to viability in half the states was pretty alarming. We can now safely say circa 15% of democratic primary voters are indeed the kind of idiot who votes for whatever the TV says. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:13, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
IMO, Bloomberg's campaign was dead on arrival. He seriously thought that bombarding us with 10,000 TV/YouTube ads a day would get him into the White House. That's just annoying no matter what political party you're apart of. And I'm sorry, but that one ad with the Yahoo News headline "Trump scared of Bloomberg" was just retarded. There was not one candidate in this entire election that even gave Bloomberg the time of day, other than destroying him in the democratic debates. He should have waited until winning the nomination before pulling out that one. Aaronmichael5 21:08, 4 March 2020 (UTC).
It was also saber-rattling against Sanders/Warren. People paying attention had to consider whether they wanted those kind of resources on their side, or used against them in a Bloomberg third-party campaign to throw the election. Now Bloomberg is all-in for "the Senator from MNBA", who will safely not permit anything that will upset the oligarch class. Y'all fooled yourselves if you thought Bloomberg's only objective was to grab the nomination. -- (talk) 09:14, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
I actually liked the guy. Well, "like" is a strong word. Point is, I don't think he would've been all that terrible for the US as President, at least compared to our current sitch. But, I'm not too upset that he didn't win, just upset at who's remaining. CoryUsar (talk) 22:54, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
@CorruptUser You do know Bloomberg is basically Trump, but if he was smart and successful right? ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 01:18, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
That's not quite true, but even if it was it'd be a yuge reason to vote for the guy over Trump, because Trump being a consummate asshole is about 70% of the problem. Forget any of his policies, the biggest disaster is that by simply being blatantly racist, Trump has created a world where it is acceptable for people to be racist neo-nazis, something that wouldn't happen with Bloomberg. The Presidency is a bit more than a figurehead, but the President is still a symbol for all Americans of what a proper American should aspire to be. And when it comes to policies, Trump's domestic policies are beyond awful, but the most important policy for anyone outside the US (i.e., 95% of the world) is US foreign policy, which it pains me to say is arguably not terrible. For the first time in, well, as long as I've been alive, we have an administration that has not started or entered the US into a war or major conflict. Let that sink in for a second. Obama dragged the US into Syria and Libya. Bush started Iraq and mishandled Afghanistan. Clinton got involved in Yugoslavia and Somalia. Bush Sr has Iraq War Sr. Trump? Nothing. He's "cutting and running" from Syria, sitting down with Kim Jong Il to at least make an attempt at ending the Korean War, negotiating with the Taliban to end Afghanistan. You may think these are not the best decisions, but guess what, it's the most anti-war Presidency we've had. If you want to continue these pointless wars which we might not ever win short of doing something unthinkable, do so with your own blood and silver, not mine. So yeah, I'm going to give the "non-asshole version of Trump" a chance. But, it's a moot point, since it's Biden or Bernie now. CoryUsar (talk) 07:36, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
I guess your position is, other peoples' genocides, not our problem? "Yugoslavia and Somalia" were two of the most justified U.S. foreign things in the past half-century, though Somalia in particular was poorly-planned and half-assed which is why it didn't turn out so well. As for the former, well, they have statues of Clinton in Kosovo, and not because they like his looks. "Bomb anyone we don't like" and isolationism are a false dilemma. No big powers have made big moves internationally because they're waiting to see whether Trump gets re-elected. If he is, guaranteed, Putin rolls into Ukraine and probably applies "pressure" in the Arctic, and the PRC makes a grab for the South China Sea. India and Pakistan will likely see full-on genocide and war. The Levant too, if the Israeli right holds on to power. -- (talk) 09:09, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
The really depressing thing is that if the Bosnian War was happening today, the US would probably side with Milosevic. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 14:10, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
@CorruptUser Which is better, someone who stabs you in the back or someone stabs you in the front? Yeah, it kind of matters that people like you were willing to replace Trump with a man who's policies are virtually identical. And the fact that while Bloomberg is down, he isn't out. He's likely prepping to run third party, and whether to win or to ensure someone else does the damage will be the same. "Forget any of his policies, the biggest disaster is that by simply being blatantly racist, Trump has created a world where it is acceptable for people to be racist neo-nazis, something that wouldn't happen with Bloomberg." Yes it would. Bloomberg is Trump. A smarter, richer, more cunning Trump. Again, identical policies. I'm more than a little miffed that people like you are willing to screw people like me over just so you can feel safe. I'm neurally atypical, non-heterosexual, and lower middle-class to upper-working class. I'm going to be hit by Trump's next wave when he gets re-elected because people like you would rather people like me suffer rather than lift a finger to improve things. The time for tinkering around is over, has been for 30 years. The time for swift action is here, and we can do it the easy way, where we reform the system into something better than authoritarian developing countries coming out of economic isolation, or the hard way where we just start offing asshats or crashing the economy on purpose. Because those are the choices, when you look at it minus the glasses. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:24, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Yugoslavia was only justified because we won. All wars can be justified if we win them. Guess what, the Iraq War war was also a "justified" "democracy-building" war because Saddam was a mass murdering psycho who had turned (or kept) Iraq a hellhole, and had the Iraq War resulted in peace the entire world would be praising Saint Bush (and we'd probably have another justified war, and another). There's a reason that the majority of people supported that war. It's only now, nearly two decades later, that we can look back and say it was a mistake to go in. Had Yugoslavia dragged on, with an unending supply of proxies and money flowing in against us (and NATO), we'd now talk about how terrible it was to have gone in regardless of the initial reasons.
We didn't win Somalia. We got a couple warlords, and then the civil war ravaged the place for decades more.
I'm also neurally atypical and lower-middle/working class (but trying to move into upper class, if my career could get back on track). Semi-proud union boy. Other than the sexuality, we are relatively similar.CoryUsar (talk) 19:13, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
that's bullshit. Yugoslavia intervention was justified because of on going genocide and humanitarian crisis brought about by the various wars in the region. nato helped bring an end to the war, but didnt 'win' anything. somalia was similarly justified by an on going humanitarian crisis and genocide, intervention mandated by the un. it was still justified even though it did not lead to an immediate end to hostilities. you will note both these incidences involved intervention in already dire situations, with international consensus, the motivations being primarily humanitarian.
the Iraq war on the other hand, had no humanitarian mission, no international consensus, and can be considered a 'win' for the people who sought it - regime change was the goal, democracy was an after thought. but winning didnt justify the war. and lots of people didnt require 20 years of hindsight for that.
conflating these conflicts while ignoring just how different they were in how they were handled, the situations on the ground and the motivations is just facile, and the point being made is just as facile. im sure all wars can be justified if you win. people can justify all kinds of horrific actions. how something is justified matters, what is being justified matters. if the justification is dogshit matters. AMassiveGay (talk) 23:32, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
I think it’s a little overblown to call the Iraq War a win for those who sought it, since their goal wasn’t simply to get rid of Saddam, but to fundamentally shift the power dynamics in the Middle East with Iraq getting the role of “loyal US ally and deputy sheriff” that Iran had before the ayatollahs overthrew the shah. Given that rather than (further) isolating Iran, the Iraq War significantly increased Teheran’s influence, by removing their archenemy in Bagdad and replacing him with a Shia dominated government quite sympathetic to their co-religionists across the border, I don’t see how the Iraq War can be chalked up as a win, except in the extremely limited sense of having toppled Saddam.
As for Iraq being a hellhole prewar, yes, the regime was an extremely repressive one (not a coincidence that Saddam’s great idol was Stalin), but if the hellhole depiction refers to the living conditions, then those were pretty decent before the US-led coalition decided to use draconian sanctions to choke Iraq’s economy after the Gulf War. Anyone here remember Madeleine Albright’s incredibly callous "We think the price is worth it” response to the question of how she weighed the effects of sanctions against the then estimated half a million Iraqi children thought to have died as a consequence of the sanctions? ScepticWombat (talk) 04:43, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Whoops, how could anyone have seen that coming? Obviously all the ethnic and religious groups in Iraq that hate each other were going to peacefully coexist and vote in a safely Western-friendly neoliberal government that would proceed to give us access to their markets and garrison Iran for us. -- (talk) 06:23, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Everyone who wasn't a neocon supported the Iraq War because they were certain Saddam was going to nuke D.C. in a month or so and also give us all anthrax, and also hey maybe bin Laden is there! People who knew what they were talking about knew it would be a disaster, but "respectable opinion" deemed them traitorous terrorist sympathizers. Seriously, even people who lived through it tend to forget the level of war fever. Just look at the approval rating spike for Bush when the invasion happened (March 2003). You're certainly right that any poorly-planned and -executed intervention can leave things worse than before. One bad thing that doesn't get the attention it should (because ARE YOU SAYING YOU DON'T SUPPORT THE TROOPS?) is the attitude in the sclerotic and self-assured U.S. military establishment, which tends to believe any conflict can be resolved in six months, tops, with enough application of whiz-bang high-tech weapons. This is what politicians and the public want to hear, so consequently everyone ignores any long-term planning. No one wants to make large, ongoing commitments of ground troops, so the default strategy is to bomb things until the problem is "fixed", which just about never works. It's absolutely true that we should stay out of things unless we collectively agree to make the necessary commitment, which might be complicated and take decades, and plan thoroughly. -- (talk) 06:23, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
'Seriously, even people who lived through it tend to forget the level of war fever' - I lived through it, in the uk - part of the coalition of the willing, and I remember the anti war sentiment more than any war fever. support was far less than in the us. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:32, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Our media totally quashed all reporting on the antiwar protests. It's hard not to be conspiratorial about some of what happened. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:38, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
Duh, you're all lily-livered pinko Eurocommies. If it wasn't for 'Murica you'd all be speaking German! That's why you're all jealous and wanted America to fail in Iraq, sayeth the Moustache of Understanding. Also David French (hey, no article?) reminds us that the Iraq War still was the right thing to do, and bad things only happened because Bush and Obama were screwups. Also we should have invaded Syria too. Blood is on your hands, you anti-war cowards! -- (talk) 03:02, 7 March 2020 (UTC)

James Traficant[edit]

We should make an article about this ratfuckerWikipedia. Despite being a Democrat, he was vehemently anti-immigrant and pro-life before getting barred from Congress for bribing officials and getting jailed for it (like that other guy). Sadly, he also came from my state of Ohio.Jeh2ow Damn son! 17:19, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

Feel free to start one. RoninMacbeth (talk) 17:47, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
Don't forget that he joined Pat Buchanan in defending former Nazi war criminals living in the US, and used anti-Semitic dog whistles to claim that "Israel" (wink wink, nudge nudge) controls the US government and media. No wonder he has a small but notable following among the alt-right today, with many of them claiming that he did nothing wrong and got railroaded for getting too close to The Truth™. He was a prototype for everything wrong with politics today. KevinR1990 (talk) 21:55, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
"Despite being a Democrat..." No surprise there if you read his bio. He represented the conservative blue-collar whites who voted Democratic because of labor for most of the 20th century. Peeling enough of them off was a key part in the Reagan Revolution and breaking the New Deal coalition. The ones who care more about "social issues" ("the U.S. should be a white Christian patriarchy") vote Republican now. This by the way is why Ohio is close to becoming a red state, coupled with "brain drain" as the young flee to the coasts or liberal enclaves like Austin.
On a side note, Traficant was expelled from the House. Here is where I rail at the utter fecklessness of the Democratic leadership, who still haven't held a vote on expelling Steve King. It will fail; the point is to get House Republicans on record as supporting an open white supremacist. It's basically guaranteed that Pelosi hasn't done this as a favor to her good old Republican pals who just have some differences of opinion and don't want to be "put in a difficult position". -- (talk) 09:34, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Just as long as it's a better article than the deleted one. Avida Dollarsher again 18:55, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

(Checks deleted article) Yeah, that shouldn't be hard to do honestly, also yeah, Ohio is a crap state.--NavigatorBR(Talk) - 22:49, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
As an Ohioan, I concur. Oxyaena Harass 14:39, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
The Wright brothers, John Glenn and Neil Armstrong were all from Ohio. Living there obviously makes people want to leave the planet. Avida Dollarsher again 22:57, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
Moses Cleaveland, the founder of (wait for it...) Cleveland Ohio, is buried in Canterbury, Connecticut. That pretty much tells you everything you need to know about Cleveland Ohio. Aaronmichael5 18:52 9 March 2020 (UTC).

Token Film Characters: Applying the term in a different way than racism[edit]

Note: This is not intended as racism nor dismissing whitewashing in film

It can also be applied to a character with zero development and one nobody cares about. Easy to sacrifice so none of the tough choices are left up to the main characters.

Example- in The Walking Dead season 1 a character named Amy is killed off, she had zero character development and her death had no impact on what little story TWD even has. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 02:35, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Kinda a necessity in certain genres. You want to emphasize that "serious business is going down" in an action film, for example, you have the villain knock off a couple-three bystanders. Let them have some small presence, and then pop. Cliched? Maybe, but it serves the purpose of letting the audience know that "this guy is bad", so the audience can tell the difference between him and the hero.
Or you whack a couple of mooks who work for the Big Bad, this identifying the hero as the one who... erases undeveloped... movies are complicated. Kencolt (talk) 09:41, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
none of this is tokenism AMassiveGay (talk) 11:52, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Is this related to the Black Dude Dies First trope/stereotype? That's kind of tokenism and racism, in that you throw in a black character to the mix to make the party look more varied, but don't develop them, leaving them as one-dimensional in comparison to the white lead, and kill them off first (often in a rather pathetic/unheroic way). --Annanoon (talk) 12:04, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
@Rationalzombie94 Surely what you're talking about are Red Shirts. As has already been pointed out, nothing to do with tokenism. Spud (talk) 13:07, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
"May your characters always appear in the opening scene of a police procedura...." Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 15:03, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Ooooh. I have to remember that for the next time I log into WoW. Kencolt (talk) 21:57, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
@AMassiveGay You can see how I kinda thought that though. I did not actually know the term "Red Shirt" existed before. That is how I got confused. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 00:04, 8 March 2020 (UTC)
well I hope that's been cleared up for you. tokenism need not be about race though. its lip service to whatever group is required for the sheen of whatever kind of diversity is sought. usually a minority group, but can be really niche. you could have a token hammer in a no doubt award winning film about tongsAMassiveGay (talk) 10:05, 10 March 2020 (UTC)
Tertiary characters are usually the not-for-long ones. Token characters occur when some part of a culture doesn't actually affect the plot, it's more the color of their skin, their name, the tropes that define the character over any development. I can see how that's confusing with tertiary characters. In the Walking Dead, when Dale says "T-Dog has a nasty infection." It's never clear why T-Dog has the nickname, or why it's important that Dale calls him T-Dog, I would have watched an entire season of Dale and T-Dog bonding, Dale was a natural empath and T-Dog was a natural enforcer. I admittedly haven't even watched the show since halfway through second season, I just remember that line and laughing and saying "This is awful, anyone but Dale could have said that and I would believe it, why don't we know these two are friends!?!" Losing Dale on the farm was the only misstep I needed to not care about the show. Welllll, having Laurie question every decision and having Rick be like "I'm just trying to make decisions, wife," and then having Laurie being eaten entirely by a walker about the same size as her, anyway, the concept was cool, some ideas were cool, but it's not exactly a character-consistent show. Castlevania season 3 is streaming. Warren Ellis is one of my favorite writers. He's writing the Castlevania series, produced by Fred Seibert, and I like a lot of Seibert productions. I love Castlevania games, so that's three ticks for me. A couple of my friends are watching it so I cn point out that I've seen some direct references in animation to enemies and bosses from the games; Legion, Cthulhu (and that g-d dark void attack he does that has absolutely fucked my night up when I hadn't saved) and... Maybe an interesting take on Beelzebub? I think that's what they were going for, they had a bunch of little flying beasties pour out like flies and then never really addressed them again. Also in season three, there are a couple of Japanese kids, and they are mostly fine, except they speak the language fluently with a heavy... yellow... accent, and their purpose is to be culturally confusing. Everybody talks with a stupid accent, like Star Wars, but these kids are canonically Japanese and their intention is definitely deep token territory. They use some words differently, but seemingly for the sake of time this isn't fleshed out. They don't provide insight to their culture, their backstories are tropes that are based more in Japanese tropes than western tropes, but they don't push the storyline along via their own backstories or tropes, they become fodder to the main characters' personal story arcs. It's pretty bad tokenism, unless more... Yellow people... Show up and act differently and explain there's a nuance in people/culture from anywhere, I mean, yes, everyone but the mains are shown as ambiguous and bad, regardless of being white or Japanese. I'm just saying, so far it's a pretty bad look to introduce Japanese characters just to be from Japan. And I like Warren Ellis. He is insightful, clever, has a very distinct way of writing big jokes (i.e. "No, you said we could start a fire by punching a fish. [x] made it work." and "How can you tell the goat loves you?"/"Well it fucks me, don't it?") He has always written strong and intelligent women, and he's writing strong and intelligent women here. But so far, there's some definite tokenism. And I don't plan on not watching more, he's writing sympathetic villains and turning heroes into villains and heroes into depressed people who don't want to hero because that shit would actually suck, and he's doing in excellently, it's clearly moving somewhere, that's all really good. It's just a bummer that an old white Brit and a quality production company are going to do tokenism like it's still the 90s. Oh, what a confusing culture, eastern storytelling, I know, let's combine the weirdest parts of it just to mess up our white knight! Like, I'm watching my heroes do one of my favorite games justice as a clever adaptation, and you just don't see that. But what is a man, a miserable pile of secrets. Kill your heroes, I guess. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:49, 11 March 2020 (UTC)

Does Joe Biden has dementia?[edit]

Is it just me or does Joe Biden has dementia? I come to to this conclusion because can't form a coherent sentence, seems to have cognitive issues and by watching this video which was shocking because of how different Joe Biden acted there compared to how he's acting in the Dem primary. Tuxer (talk) 16:40, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Maybe I am just being an asshole as he does have a tendency to make gaffs and his debate performance was at best lacklustre and at worst attrocious while in that video he does sound much... passionate compared to how he acted in the debates. Tuxer (talk) 16:44, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
All his gaffes and slips are consistent with the great, terrible disease of being a 77-year old man. Minish (talk) 16:46, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
I wouldn't make a clinical diagnosis from public appearances and verbal flubs. God knows I'm not a practiced public speaker and would say some dumb things like that if I had to run a presidential campaign. However, comparing him to other presidential candidates his age, there is a recognizable contrast. Even against trump, who is himself not the most cogent man in the world. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:56, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
True but I am comparing 2020 Biden to 1995 Biden and there's a bit of a contrast. 1995 Biden seems imo to be more coherent compared to his lacklustre act in the debates but it's posible that age-based fatigue is playing a role. Armchair psychology is not good anyways. Tuxer (talk) 18:01, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Twenty five fucking years of a difference though, don't you think? Jaysus lad, are you the same person now as 25 years ago? Cardinal Chang (talk) 19:10, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
People don't realise that almost 80-year olds are normally awkward and mix up their wives and sisters because they've seen too much of Bernie Sanders, who is the exception that proves the rule. Minish (talk) 19:25, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
What rule was that now?Ariel31459 (talk) 00:46, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
You have no idea what real dementia is!! :( alternatively if you do have some idea then you're being glib with it!! I wish you all, and me, the joy of getting to 77 in as good shape as JB..... generally assuming not many of us are there yet.....Aloysius the Gaul 03:13, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
That doesn't mean I'd want him driving my car McUrist (talk) 09:08, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
I agree that we should be careful about playing diagnostics here, but Biden does seem more confused than his usual chronic “foot-in-mouth” disease. Some have noted that he seems to have declined somewhat since his vice presidency (comparing with 1995 is too big a jump in time to be useful) and his verbal nonsense seems to be more confused than simply his well known proclivity for gaffes. Now, there are several possible causes, from stress or mere age to more serious underlying causes, such as was the case with Saint Ronnie in his second term, when his distraction and confusion might well have been the early signs of his subsequent Alzheimer’s. Then again, Biden is up against an incumbent that behaves in a way consistent with the signs several serious psychological disorders and whose father suffered from Alzheimer’s. ScepticWombat (talk) 13:16, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
I mean it's possible but it looks like a repeat of people saying Hillary was unfit to be president because she coughed in some of her speeches and fell that one time. RationalHindu (talk) 15:47, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
I think that Hillary‘s cough was different. That was simply an ordinary infection, i.e. a one-time event, whereas Biden seems to have been acting odder than usual for some time. Then again, it may be just due to the constant travelling and stress of campaigning, but Sanders seems to be acting his usual self on the campaign trail. Then again, Sanders have been campaigning on and off since 2016, so he might have gotten used to it, while Biden hasn’t really been on the stump since his vice presidency campaign in 2012 (and that was, after all as a second fiddle to Obama). I guess we’ll just have to see how he does on the debate stage etc., now that he’ll have more time to fill, as the field has narrowed to just him and Sanders. ScepticWombat (talk) 16:56, 6 March 2020 (UTC)

Bye Warren[edit]

I really did have you as a second choice until you "triangulated" your way into having no principles whatsoever just before Iowa. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:57, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Dropping out is really the best thing for Warren. She elected to drop far too much of her principles (chiefly taking money from Super PACs) during the race in order to stay in it just a little longer. I hope this will be good for Bernie, and I especially hope she becomes Bernie's running mate and they combine their campaigns. Minish (talk) 17:04, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
And yet, Tulsi's still in. I think she'd be perfect as Bernie's Secretary of Defense or something.Jeh2ow Damn son! 17:14, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Correct me if I am wrong, but aren't Warren supporters second choices split close to evenly with Biden and Sanders? Given that Warren used to be clobbering Bernie in the polls I imagine a lot of those with Bernie as their second choice left already and that is why she did so poorly in the actual contests. This does not hurt Sanders but the net help is less than, say, when Bloomberg dropped out and how that worked out for Biden. Also, if you had combined Bloomberg and Biden's results on super tuesday Sanders would have pretty much lost the nomination right there.Flandres (talk) 17:33, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

I don't know. Not everything's always about strategy. I was deeply disappointed in Warren, then shortly thereafter extremely angry with her, due to the whole "a woman can't win" thing. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:37, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
You'd almost think the only thing happening in the world right now are American primaries. ShabiDOO 19:10, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
A lot of people here are Americans. The people here lean more to the Democrats than the Republicans. They are very interested in politics. So yeah, maybe its not such a big shock the contest that could decide who is their future leader is kinda a priority right now.-Flandres (talk) 19:16, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
No...but when the conversations become about if a candidate has dimentia and who would make a good secretary of defense for Sanders it's another story. I mean...it's a four year long election process. It's still months away. Take it easy or you might hyperventilate from rampant speculation and already drawn conclusions. ShabiDOO 19:42, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
That is just a fact of life in the modern political climate of the USA. People are obsessed with politics because we are at a crossroads and everyone wants to know how it ends. And now actually is the time to start predicting the outcome of the primaries because super tuesday has already happened and the next group of states(Idaho, North Dakota, Mississippi,Missouri,Washington, and Michigan) Could end up deciding the Nomination.-Flandres (talk) 19:59, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
I mean, honestly, "apolitical" people who actively speak up about how little they care about things that other people care about(within reason, of course) suck. It all but guarantees that the opinions they do have suck. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:05, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
The US is extremely politically divided right now. Of course we're gonna speculate and argue over our election results. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 23:09, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
Everyone's opinions about elections months away suck. You have no clue who will win or how well they'll do if elected. It's like gossip about who will win the Oscars where people blab like their opinions have certainty and substance. It's hardly that I don't care about which next US president wins. It's the difference between having difficult messy international relations or super fucked up international relations and trade wars. It's quite important in that sense. But even in the domain of American politics there are more interesting things happening than speculating who is the shittiest or most unelectable candidate or who you're so sure will gain momentum this week. You're making it up as you go along. ShabiDOO 23:20, 5 March 2020 (UTC)
It is still possible to have predictions about politics in advance-you could easily say in march 2012 that Obama would win re-election, for instance, and some pretty much foresaw the whole "Biden would look weak starting out but rebound on super Tuesday " thing, they just did not on rational wiki, a very pro-Bernie site. You adjust predictions to make up for new data(the moderates consolidating for instance) but you may still use broad trends to make guesses. You can also tell how well a president will do once elected if you have the perquisite knowledge of politics.-Flandres (talk) 23:28, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Shanks and Kevin Rudd[edit]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kznT8Sa6RjY Interesting discussion, mostly on media bias because that's Shank shtick. Rudds sentiment on the press seems similar Brown and Blair talking about it, where Blair admits he was far more eager. Should RW have a Jordies entry? He's got plenty of contentious opinions. McUrist (talk) 09:15, 6 March 2020 (UTC)

How is Russel Brand a thing?[edit]

I'm just confused about how a comedian goes from comedy to whatever spiritual "quest for truth consciousness" guy he is now and have people buy into it.Machina (talk) 22:44, 6 March 2020 (UTC)

He is not an MP, and he is a distraction from Coronavirus and Brexit and (whichever royal has currently annoyed the Media). Anna Livia (talk) 23:54, 6 March 2020 (UTC)
MP?Machina (talk) 02:21, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
Member of Parliament And I always thought he was a shit comedian. Spud (talk) 06:32, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
He is a shit comedian, dreadful MTV host and he likes to pick on old age pensioners "for a laugh" https://www.theguardian.com/media/2008/oct/27/russell-brand-jonathan-ross-andrew-sachs-calls in fact, he and that other motormouthed halfwit (Jonathan Woss) are essentially c***s Cardinal Chang (talk) 08:13, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
Liked*. I'm sure he's changed since his obnoxious days. (talk) 09:52, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
Likes* I'm sure he hasn't. Cardinal Chang (talk) 13:04, 9 March 2020 (UTC)
hes quite interesting when hes talking about his past drug addiction and mental health issues, many of his past mistakes where firmly in this period of is life. and some of his stand up is quite good. a relevant podcast AMassiveGay (talk) 13:45, 7 March 2020 (UTC)

I’m mostly referring to the new age junk he’s peddling now though that’s what I meant.Machina (talk) 16:07, 7 March 2020 (UTC)

then provide links to what you mean or are we supposed to guess? AMassiveGay (talk) 17:40, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
especially since what I associate with him more these days is activism around wealth disparity AMassiveGay (talk) 17:41, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
Brand is a motor-mouth, so I'm sure he has offended half of the planet: how to measure his success? measure his income? his estate is worth about 15 million (dollars I suppose). Source of income: a few movies, voice acting and comedy. Somebody thinks he does something right. Some people feel they have to seek enlightenment when drugs and booze don't do it for them, and "When you're rich they think you really know."Ariel31459 (talk) 18:56, 9 March 2020 (UTC)

Why is Dysk still allowed to be a mod of the subreddit?[edit]

So uhhh...slight digression here...but...why did the chicken cross the road? ShabiDOO 18:57, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
I am sure that this sort of thing can be resolved peacefully. No need to stir shit up. --Rationalzombie94 (talk) 00:08, 8 March 2020 (UTC)
I once went to a youth hockey game for a farm team, and as soon as the puck hit the ice, two kids dropped their gloves and tried to beat the shit out of each other. Neither of these kids were out of high school. I said "must be some facebook beef," and somebody older than me said "okay old man, it's clearly Twitter beef. Get with it."Do the interpersonal relationships outside of this site really define the institution? There's something I'm usually quiet about, but I spent some time with Planned Parenthood volunteers, and I tried to volunteer after hanging out with two people who I thought were friends, but in my experience Planned Parenthood volunteers can't stop fucking each other and getting mad about it, and I got put in a situation where I just didn't know what I was supposed to do. Like I get it, but I got tagged in by a friend who didn't help me at all, and I looked fucking worthless in front of the real sexual health lady, because it was my first outing and I had no idea what I was supposed to do. I don't talk to either of those two slimeballs anymore (I started a relationship with one of them for about a month, but she is a slimeball. I played in a band with one who introduced me to her to get her off his back, he is a slimeball). They did decent work, but they both just wanted to fuck their way to the top, but they couldn't stop being slimeballs and then getting mad about it. I'm sorry if somebody is an actually shitty human. I don't want them on my team, but if they just stop being slimeballs and do the work, let's go. But you're not going to convince me that your extracurriculars matter... I don't do discord, and as far as I'm concerned, fine, he's a slimeball, if he slimes on ratwik get rid of him. This site, in my opinion, is a public forum. If you drag it off site, play stupid games and win stupid prizes, don't bring it back. Don't fucking go to the Discord or subreddit in the first place, crimeny. Rationalwiki is supposed to be a resource, not a cesspool. I refuse to be a moderator because I don't have the time or energy to patrol a wiki. But clearly, you guys have so much time and energy, and a better understanding of how to do Discords and subreddits than you have of creating wiki pages. Do the fucking work, please, stop fucking with each other and just help with the mission or disambiguate. If you're exclusionary, you're missing the mission. If you want to be a moderator that bad, do the fucking work.
You're acting like children on a playground. You are joking around to hurt each others' feelings until your own feelings actually get hurt. You are pretending to be mean to each other, and then somebody can't pretend anymore, and then nobody pretends anymore because you've all been so mean to each other, because that's what people do? Stop pretending to be mean, and you will stop getting hurt over things you are pretending to be mean about. The cycle can stop, if you all just stop having violent and weird sex interactions with each other to prove how experienced you are and then using it to attempt to climb a ladder you don't even care about, we can stop running the best ones out. But if your goal is to run the best ones out, then fucking work harder than them, bring something to the mission. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:15, 12 March 2020 (UTC)

Tyrannosauroid feathers[edit]

Here's a link to a recent post of mine adding context to the Tyrannosauroid feather debate: [16] To sum up: it's highly likely the ancestors of Tyrannosaurus possessed feathers, but due to T. rex's big size it's unlikely T. rex itself had feathers. Oxyaena Harass 14:08, 7 March 2020 (UTC)

If it and its ancestors had feathers, the better question would be whether it had any reason to lose them. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 16:19, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
That question is covered in my post. Oxyaena Harass 17:57, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
My paleontology professor said that it's likely that T. rex had "simple feathers," like down. But they didn't have feathers in the same way raptors or modern birds do. RoninMacbeth (talk) 20:09, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
I think some specimen have feathers, others don't, and feathers are likely thin and not covering the dino much. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 23:07, 7 March 2020 (UTC)
Did any of y'all even read my linked post? Oxyaena Harass 03:00, 8 March 2020 (UTC)
It may come down to the definition of a "feather". The majority of animals cover their bare flesh with something. In modern animals that can be scales, feathers, shell or whatever. These coverings serve many functions. So if Tyrannosaurus did not have dinosaur-type "feathers" (which probably came in many forms) then what did it have? (And, yes, I read the original post, but I'm responding to various comments here on this wiki.) Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 12:39, 8 March 2020 (UTC)
Okay, let me explain then. It's well known that heat insulation correlates positively with size increase, and negatively with size decrease, which is why in hot tropical environments large animals like elephants and rhinos lack a dense covering of hair. In the uber-greenhouse world of the Cretaceous, this effect would've been amplified thousandfold, meaning that Tyrannosaurus likely lacked feathers as an adult, or at least only had a sparse covering of them, similar to human hair (we've found fossilized T rex skin imprints, showing scales and not much else) or elephant hair. Oxyaena Harass 13:04, 8 March 2020 (UTC)